Disclaimer: Press sample provided for review. All opinions expressed are my own.
Lately my music-listening habits have me cycling between Taylor Swift’s new album– 1989– and One Direction’s new album– Four. (My Portmanteau Couple Name for the two, of course, is the Orwellian 19 Eighty-Four. #OTP) Truly we live in an axial age of pop.
It’s been kind of a rough week– it’s the time of year when everyone’s sick and everything’s due. My advisor was nice enough to give me horehound lozenges for the former and something called “Emotional Ally Anxiety & Duress Aid” for the latter. But clearly what I really needed was more One Direction makeup!
Our favorite boyband’s put their name on another limited edition beauty release– a value set with six eyeshadows, four lip glosses, two nail varnishes, an eye pencil, and a lip gloss top coat. (Doesn’t that sound like a variant of the chorus to “Twelve Days of Christmas”?) The aesthetic here’s a lot like that of their earlier makeup release. But these tins are quite a bit smaller, and they’re being distributed by less upmarket stores. Accordingly, prices have been made even more accessible– I was frankly kind of surprised when I looked them up. You get several looks’ worth of product for less than the cost of one MAC lipstick.
There are five tins available for sale as of November 15. They all carry the same suite of products, but there’s a different band member on the packaging for each one. So go forth and choose your favorite 20% of One Direction. Or, following Pokemon logic, go and catch ’em all? I’ll give you a head start– enter a giveaway here.
Availability: $12.98 from Sears; in stores at Kmart, Walmart Canada, and select Targets
Quantity: 0.52 oz of solid product and 0.48 fl oz of liquid
Again, all the shades are named after One Direction tracks– I’ll be linking to each one as I review the appropriate color. I’m glad they have a substantial enough discography to cover so many colors. But I’m a little sad none of the Four tracks showed up. Aren’t “Fool’s Gold” and “Fireproof” basically begging to be turned into makeup colors? Like, give me a gold foil mascara and a matte orange-red eyeshadow! That wouldn’t be any more wonderfully weird than “Act My Age“….
Let’s start with the nail varnishes. Here’s Stole My Heart, described as a “magenta pink shimmer”. IRL it’s a lot more vibrant than in the photo above– I’m angry that my expensive DSLR seems to have betrayed me. It’s a hot pink shot through with iridescent shimmer that seems to wink pink and orange and lavender– discretely, and not particularly discreetly. It applies really well, in thin and even layers. But the bottle’s hobbitish stature means the brush can be a little clumsy to work with– you’ve got to grip it by this stubby little handle. Still, I got a much cleaner application than I usually manage with the Julep brushes that make up most of my collection. One Direction does nail polish right.
And here’s Alive, a clear varnish with “multi-colored glitter flakes” in silver, turquoise, and magenta. My issue with this one is the issue I have with all glitter topcoats– you’ve gotta do a fair amount of fishing if you want, like, a representative color spread. But Alive‘s no worse than the rest of its ilk.
I didn’t bother swatching I Want, the eye pencil in “true matte black”– it is, in every respect, Exactly What It Says on the Tin. You can see it in action in any of the shots on this page in which my eyes are visible! But the eyeshadows deserve a further look. It’s a powder formula and, as with the shadows in their last collection, I found them sheer but buildable in texture. They work better on the lid than when swatched. Nyx Milk improved vibrancy significantly, but also seemed to make the shades read cooler. And it brought out some interesting metallic depth in I Would.
Now on to the colors! Nobody Compares is described as a “metallic silver”, which seems accurate. It’s a cool-toned, almost bluish steel color. The finish leans matte– far more chrome than mercury. Tell Me a Lie, supposedly a “metallic nude pink”, seemed neither metallic nor pink to me, although I guess it’s basically a nude. I’d actually call it a greyed out beige that almost blends into my skin when swatched bare. There’s a little bit of shimmer suspended in it, but it actually reads matte. Same Mistakes, a “metallic mint”, seems more genuinely metallic. It’s a pale, cerulean-leaning green with gold microshimmer, and something about it looks deliciously venomous to me. I actually like it a lot as a sheer wash of color, but it’s gorgeous over Milk.
The next three eyeshadows are all dark, moody shades that apply kind of sheer. On bare skin, they actually look like tonally variant blacks– like the dark reprise to MAKE’s experiment with tonal whites. #accidentalavantgarde You really have to break out a white base to get them to differentiate themselves. I Would— named after one of my favorite 1D songs, even though the lyrics do a weird thing to the subjunctive!– is supposed to be a “smokey brown shimmer”. It reads as a warm black, and it’s got a kind of demimetallic finish brightened by gold microshimmer. Next, Summer Love, theoretically a “smokey purple haze”, translates into a violet-leaning navy with purple microshimmer. Finally, Everything About You, accurately termed a “smokey black shimmer”, applied the most sheerly out of the three.And here are the lip glosses!
Loved You First is a “bubblegum pink”, a description I deem wholly accurate. It’s the most heavily pigmented gloss in this set. I’d actually say it wears more like a lipstick, drying down to a satin finish. The texture reminded me a lot of the Nyx Wicked Lippies, actually– good pigment, but emollient enough that you get some slip, and visible brushstrokes at close range. It does stain– which might be either a bug or a feature, YMMV. I personally appreciate anything that extends the life of my lip color.
One Thing is named for one of my favorite vintage 1D songs! It looks kind of crazy with my skin tone, even though I see it being ethereally striking on paler skinned folks– give it a try if you look like Frozen‘s Elsa. It’s deemed a “frosted pink ice”, a permutation of descriptors that usually strikes fear in my heart. The milkiness makes it settle into lip lines quite a bit. I’d say this one’s best for layering.I swear “Irresistible” is spelled in a, like, standard way when they’re talking about the song. Therefore I will continue to do the annoying [sic] thing. Whatever. This is supposed to be a “shimmered pearl”, which seems unlikely to me– even more so once you consider Heart Attack. I’m about 90% convinced they switched those around? Anyway, Irresistable [sic] is my favorite lip gloss in the bunch. It’d call it a warm, medium-toned pink with pink shimmer– a YLBB shade with a little kick of luminosity.
Finally, here’s Heart Attack, our alleged “creamy rose shine”. You see what I’m saying about these two shade names being switched? This one’s a champagne gold pearl that experiences, to a lesser degree, the same settling into lip lines you get with One Thing. I suspect this one, too, is meant to be a layering shade.
I wasn’t quite sure what to do with Over Again, the “silver glitter sparkle” marketed as a lip gloss top coat. Most of the glosses in this set were luminous enough that it didn’t really changed the look of them– and I also didn’t notice it prolonging wear significantly. So I decided to layer it over that most iconic of matte reds, MAC Ruby Woo. Voila! You’ve got a glossy red pout, with the shimmer staying at a level I’d call subtle.
In fact, I decided Ruby Woo made a pretty good control for testing my two problem glosses as layering shades. In that capacity, they performed admirable– they’re good options for giving your matte lipsticks some more versatility and some subtle tonal variations.
Face: Japonesque Color Radiance Primer, Skin79 Oriental Gold BB Cream Plus, Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Dollface, e.l.f. Studio Tone Correcting Powder in Warm, Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette in Dim Light and Incandescent Light