A non-toxic beauty blog focusing on botanical ingredients, honest reviews, affordable options, lifestyle musings, and more than a touch of humor.
"I now look back fondly at those being the most constructive years for preparing me for life in the real world...You have to have pretty thick skin and you have to have big shoulders." - Tom Curley

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Product Review + SWATCHES!: Star Crushed Minerals Eye Shadows

I'm a bad beauty blogger. Bad! You know why? Because I've been hanging on to these shadows for over six months and I still haven't reviewed them!

I guess it's a testament to their longevity that they're still as vibrant, shimmery, and beautiful as the day I got them in the mail.

It's easy to have a bit of sticker shock when transitioning to clean beauty products, especially makeup. There's a lot of really cheap, effective, yet toxic makeup out there in drug stores and groceries. When looking at luxury brands like Kjaer Weis, ILIA, RMS Beauty, and W3LL People, it's easy to find yourself deciding between some eyeshadow and the electric bill. Luckily, a plethora of unique boutiques have popped up online offering more affordable, yet still clean, options for makeup. A number of these independent brands can be found on Etsy, which is where I encountered Star Crushed Minerals.

The wow factor from this shop comes from the affordability of their products -- $2.50 for generous shadow samples and $5.00 for full size jars! -- and the vast range of vibrant colors that are available. Edie, the lovely owner of this shop, also has a variety of powder foundations, blushes, nail lacquers, and glitters in her repertoire, but today I'll be focusing on the shadows.

So here's what you've been waiting for! Here are all of the amazing colors that I tried out:

Sunburst: a bright, orange-y gold shimmer. This shadow is somewhere between sheer and opaque, and my favorite way to wear it is layered over a neutral.

Taupe: a shimmery neutral tan, great for everyday wear. I wear this shadow much more often than all of the others.

Earthy gold: wow! Unfortunately, it doesn't really show in the picture, but this shadow has some serious sparkle! A deeper brown color with copper and gold sparkle.

Starry pink: a shimmery, blossom pink. More sheer, also great for everyday wear.

Amethyst: a sheer, shimmery lilac. Great for blending with the other purples.

Blue violet: a deep, matte purple. Opaque and long-lasting.

Orbit: opaque black with purple tones and sparkle.

Black garnet: again, it's difficult to see in the picture, but this shadow has some sparkle. It is a black base with deep red shimmer, a very unique shadow. Opaque.

Black emerald: quite similar to the above color. Black base with deep green shimmer. Opaque.

Now for the nitty-gritty... how did these shadows perform? Well, they're all incredibly vibrant, in both color and shimmer. A little bit really goes a long way. It's difficult to capture the vibrancy and sparkle of these shadows in photos, especially the dark colors, but trust me when I say they're beautiful. They blend quite well, even with shadows from different brands. The colors are beautiful and the neutrals are great for everyday wear. With the variety available, it's easy to pick out colors from the same family to create an unexpected look. I did a bright purple smokey eye the other day and lost count of the compliments!

One of my favorite ways to wear these shadows was as eyeliner. If you mix the colors (especially some of the darker colors) with a drop of water, you can apply them wet for an easy, unique eyeliner or a more subtle splash of color. I've worn the Black Garnet and the Black Emerald as liner many times and I love it!

However, there were a few small problems. Something about the texture of these shadows (or maybe my brush?) makes for the powder to kind of go everywhere during application. I highly recommend placing a small piece of tissue under your eye while applying, otherwise you'll end up with shadow all over your cheeks and under your eyes. Yuck! Also, don't even think about trying to rub or brush it off -- most of the colors will smear.

These shadows also have the quintessential problem of mineral shadows: after a few hours, they clump and settle into the crease of your eyelids. I have this problem with almost all shadows, so I don't hold it against Star Crushed Minerals specifically. I also have extremely oily lids, which makes it worse. Edie -- the matron of this shop and expert shadow-maker -- was kind enough to add a sample of her eye shadow primer in with my other samples, which did help. I found that the perfect combo for hours of crease-free wear was this: matte powder over my lids, a very light layer of eyeshadow primer, then more matte powder or a shadow that matched my skin tone, then as much shimmery, colorful goodness as I wanted!

A warning: do not dust powder over these shadows if you want to preserve their color and shimmer. I tried that a few times to see if it would help with the creasing, but it completely dulled the shimmer and turned most of the color dark. I don't know what that's about.

I know this sounds like a lot of issues, but all in all I loved these shadows! The problems they had are problems that I've experienced with many mineral shadows, as well as some conventional shadows. I highly recommend Star Crushed Minerals and I can't wait to try out some more fun colors!

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