Sunday, January 9, 2011

Matte eyeshadows are not for everyone or a beauty rant

Hi girls,

I spent the whole day thinking if I should write this entry.... or should not. Then I thought I probably should, but then I changed my mind again. Finally the "should" won since, as Anastasia at Lipsticks & Lightsabers says, it's my space and I can write whatever I want, and whoever doesn't like it should not read it. 

Few days ago I was looking for some makeup inspiration on DeviantArt and through it found Olga Ekaterincheva, a Russian makeup artist who does GORGEOUS makeup work . She even has an English version of her site, so all of you can check it out. She also does makeup lessons on the side, which in itself I think is a great idea. I guess people come to her house (she doesn't say where they come, just that they come over) and bring ALL of their makeup for evaluation. For the lessons, she tries to use as much of person's makeup as possible, only recommending new stuff if theirs are absolutely un-usable. She seems really down to earth and a fun lady, I would love to get a makeup lesson with her myself. (sadly this whole Makeup Lessons part of her site is only available in Russian, but you can still look at photos)

And here where the big BUT comes in. After reading through description of lessons with examples I got a distinct feeling that she is very against shimmer eye shadows and very much pro-luxury makeup brands. Why do I get that feeling? Because she is constantly repeating how matte eye shadows are the way to go (especially when she said that one of the girls had the ONLY  eye palette from Chanel that she would have called GOOD, since it barely had any shimmer - my poor translation/paraphrasing) and only recommends luxury brands (from what I could decipher from small writings in the example photos).

Yes, I agree that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. After all, I wouldn't be writing this if I didn't have my own opinion on makeup. For example, I hate matte eye shadows, but I do not tell everyone that only shimmers are allowed to "live" so to say. Or I am a budget makeup buyer, from luxury brands I only own some Urban Decay and some Benefit. Actually, I'm not even sure I consider those as "luxury" brands, they are too funky for that :) When I think luxury, I think sophisticated but somewhat minimalistic approach, not fun and funky ways of Urban Decay and Benefit. Yet I am not against luxury brands, I just don't feel the need to spend lots of $$ on a product when I could find a cheaper alternative. At the same time, I am dying to get a luxury brand foundation from say Mac, concealer from Bobbi Brown, or a primer from Guerlain. One of those days I will.

Now I really don't know how is the situation with makeup in Russia, when I went to Ukraine I had no problem finding skin care and hair care ranges made in Russia (Ukraine, Belarus, etc...) but sadly I didn't have time to look better for makeup brands. I think I noticed some 'normal' brands available everywhere, like Maybelline and Revlon, and I think I even saw some luxury makeup brands. Didn't notice any Russian or Ukrainian ones, but I didn't look too well. :( So assuming that all the drugstore brands that we have available are also available there, WHY DOES SHE HAVE TO RECOMMEND ONLY THE LUXURY BRANDS? We wouldn't have dupes if cheaper makeup did not perform as well, or in some cases as better than luxury brands. It just really irked me.

The next thing that irked me quite a lot was her constant use of matte eye shadows. It might be my humble opinion, but only 2 looks from the whole page worked, and even those only worked because of darker, more natural matte eye shadows were used. I even think the other looks would have looked better have there been some shimmer/highlight on the brow bone. And maybe more than one color used (yes, I am referring to that blue eye shadow look on the 1st model).

Why can't day look have more shimmer to it? Why should a night look only have shimmer in moderation? Why, why, WHY? Why would a makeup artist who does such gorgeous works, stubbornly suggest the same thing to everyone who comes in for a lesson? I bet if I had a lesson, she would disapprove of my WHOLE eye shadow collection, because they are all shimmer. Of course she also says that she doesn't forbid anything to anyone, so if you like shimmer, go for it but in moderation. Then why not post a look with shimmer in the examples?

So who knows, maybe the women in examples asked for those looks. Maybe the ones with shimmer did not allow their photos to be posted.  But overall, I got a very one sided impression of the whole makeup lessons, an it really made frustrated so I had to rant about it.

On the bright side, yesterday my friend and I went makeup shopping! She haven't really been to Boots or Superdrug, so when we walked in and she saw that drugstore makeup brands can be swatched and tried, she was just as excited as I was over a year ago. I recommended her a few things that I already tried, she picked up some stuff that she heard about, and was in general makeup heaven. I decided to pick up some No7 stuff that I've been wanting to try, thankfully Boots has a 3 for 2 offer on it right now and with the No7 voucher I was a very happy camper.

So here is what I got:

Exceptional Definition Mascara
The one I have is starting to dry out, so it was a perfect excuse to get a replacement. This time I got it in Black, instead of Black/Brown.

Instant Radiance Concealer in shade II
I wanted to try it ever since one of the blogs I follow mentioned it as either their best of 2010, or just as a favorite.

Colour Calming Primer
It is GREEN so of course I had to try it. Plus because of the offer, it was free. My face tend to get very red in cold or hot weather, so I'm hoping this will help me fix the problem.

Hm.... this is turning out to be quite a long post, but I have one more thing to add. This is FOTD I had few days ago, and I really want to post it especially after all that matte vs. shimmer eye talk.

Here is a look I created with Sleek SUNSET palette, which is my go to palette right now. Not that I don't want to try other stuff, but my makeup storage space is quite limited so I tend to use one thing until I get tired of it, then put it away and start on something new. But for now I'm very happy with the SUNSET palette, and don't see myself getting tired of it any time soon.

I was inspired by Eye Candy makeup book that I got few weeks ago in Birmingham. I love the book, and I love the looks the author creates there, with some modifications (read MUCH BRIGHTER) if I had to re-create them. This look was inspired by some of the examples, and was very quick to do. And very eye catching too, I had several people comment on it.

I didn't use an eyeliner because I felt it will overpower the blue and red, but if I had to repeat this look I would use blue and red eyeliner. If I can find them in the same color as those eye shadows. :)

So what do you think? Should shimmer eye shadows be allowed to be used in every day makeup? Could we get away with using cheaper brands for good (or amazing results)? What do you think about the above look?

~ Lyuba


  1. Love that eye look! I may have to try it. I'm with you on the shimmer. Don't get me wrong, I like mattes too and on me I really do have to use everything in moderation but I'd never tell people they should only use matte shadows. Nuts! x

  2. Claire, if you do that look, please post it!!!! I'm not against matte eye shadows, I just don't like the way they look cuz I want me some shimmer lol. But I've see lots of bloggers who make them work and look gorgeous in them.

  3. To me, matte has much more "mature" feeling. I know my mother prefers matte shadows because shimmer draws attention to her crows' feet.

    However, at our age, I see no reason to have fun with makeup if you can! I may not be able to wear very pigmented colours but I love a good pale shimmery gold with some fun eyeliner.