Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense: Intense Black, Intense Plum swatches

Friday, March 30, 2012

I believe I promised eye swatches, yes?

Here are two of the shades featured in our review — just two, because (in true Rae fashion), I accidentally took two photo sets with Intense Plum and none at all with Intense Ivy. So; the inky black and bright plum today, and we’ll leave the charcoal and green for another morning.

Swatched L-R: Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense in Intense Black, Plum, Charcoal, and Ivy.

Intense Black

The terrible thing is (well, I mean, there are lots of terrible things in the comedy of errors leading up to this post, but this one is the most relevant) that I didn’t note down any of the other products used in these photos. So don’t get too curious, because I probably won’t be able to answer your questions! ;)

I believe, for Intense Black, it’s the highlighter shade from Clarins’ Graphites quad that I’ve applied through the lid, over translucent primer. A bit of concealer under the eyes, but nothing else on the lid, and nothing on the lashes.

Clinique Intense Black lid swatch

Intense Plum

There’s an ultra-nude eye that on a pretty frequent basis, especially when testing out or photographing liners or mascaras – a look that’s very natural; almost undetectable (even on film), while still adding a bit of depth to the eye area. I’m not 100% sure, but I can say with a reasonable amount of certainty that that’s what I’ve done here. I think.

For a look like this one, it’s just a bit of (1) primer through the lid, (2) black liner pushed into (but not above or below) the lashline, and (3, 4) two eyeshadows – a subtle highlighter on the inner 2/3, plus any brown or taupe on the outer third.

If you don’t have a favourite nude eyeshadow combination, try these highlighter swatches for your lid shade & these taupe eyeshadow swatches to add depth! (I’ve been partial to using a matte medium brown, recently, but I’m afraid I haven’t enough shades in that vein to swatch them en masse… yet.)

What really “makes” the look isn’t the products, but how much of them you use and how you apply them: the difference between a regular “natural eye look” and this one is just the amount of blending. Which is to say, apply sparingly and blend the crap out of everything. 

Finish by (5) adding eyeliner, if you’d like, (6) a quick coat of mascara – always a tubing one, for me, – and (7) blending in a bit of concealer under the eyes.

Clinique Intense Plum lid swatch

More Quickliner for Eyes Intense coverage…

The quick way to get intense eyes – even on the go. | Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense: review, photos, swatches

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The product: Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense

  ↳ in Intense Black, Intense Plum, Intense Charcoal, and Intense Ivy.

The application: Okay, so, not the easiest pencil to get on – depending on the look you’re going for. I usually wear fairly clean eyeliner, with a bit of a wing at the end, and these are a bit terrible for that! I sort of have to get it on, then grab a liner brush, and smudge it into shape.

If you’re looking for a smokey, sexy, smudgey eyeliner, though… well, look no farther. These smudge like a dream. The buttery sort of dream, which probably revolves around desserts and has a plotline worth about 1200 calories, and ends with the dreamer eating an entire cheesecake or rolling around in butter or something.

Seriously. They’re the butteriest pencil liner I’ve ever come across, which is terrible if you’re going for a precise line, but absolutely wonderful if you’re a fan of a softer, smokier line.

The wear: Unfortunately, the wear is the one thing about these liners that’s not up to par. With my oily monolids, I can get only five or six hours out of these before the colour starts to transfer – and that’s with primer and powder eyeshadow underneath. (For my lids, that’s about on par with other popular long-wearing liners, like MUFE’s Aqua Eyes, but definitely less than what I get with a good liquid liner.) If a liner can’t hold up for at least ten hours, I’ll definitely think twice before wearing it – even if the product’s this pretty!

I do have really picky lids, though, so don’t write these off without giving them a go. I have actually read very positive reviews about the wear time of these, so I guess it’s another “your mileage may vary” type of product!

Swatched L-R: Clinique Intense Black, Intense Plum, Intense Charcoal, and Intense Ivy.

Indirect sunlight, no flash.

The shades: When Clinique said “Intense,” they weren’t joking around. The Quickliner for Eyes Intense liners come in six shades, four of which are featured here – and yeah, they’re pretty damn intense. (Missing from this post are Intense Chocolate and Intense Midnight, a rich brown and a dark blue, respectively.)

Intense Black (01) is an opaque, cream-finish black with absolutely no shimmer. Intense Plum (02) is a playfully sparkly dark violet – tons of very finely milled violet and blue-violet shimmer interspersed in a creamy black base colour. Intense Charcoal (05) is a gorgeous gunmetal grey with incredibly refined silver and gold microshimmer – think “brushed metal” rather than “shimmery”. Intense Ivy (07) is a dark olive green with gold shimmer – very, very pretty.

Clinique Quickliner for Eyes Intense in Intense Black, Intense Plum, Intense Charcoal, and Intense Ivy.

The packaging: Clinique has done a surprisingly clever (not surprising because it’s Clinique; surprising because it’s so perfect) job of packaging these liners, keeping the shape and function of the Quickliner Intense range, but making them different by colouring the tubes correspondingly.

What really gets me, though, is that they’ve factored in shimmer, too: like the shades inside, the packaging of Intense Black is completely shimmer-free, while Intense Charcoal‘s tube is slightly metallic, and both Intense Plum and Intense Ivy are wrapped in shimmering colour. Talk about attention to detail!

The verdict?

They’re good, but… they’re not quite there yet. Clinique’s Quickliner for Eyes Intense formula is buttery, blendable, and (just as promised), really intense – but it doesn’t have the wear that I’d want out of a liner.

I don’t want to write it off completely, though, because I do find the formula to be quite unique. If you don’t have difficult lids, these would be the perfect way to get the look (and creaminess) of a gel liner, but with the convenience of a pencil – something that I don’t feel has been achieved by anyone yet.

Keep reading! »

Tips for beauty bloggers: Let’s talk curves.

Monday, March 26, 2012

The Photoshop kind, not the body kind. (But hey, if you want to talk humans-with-curves in the comments, you go right ahead. The world could use a little less skinny ’round here! Just keep it PG-13, you hear?)

Long story short, I’ve been working on a Clinique Quickliner Intense review, and I’m halfway done, but I’m really, really tired. So, you’ll have to wait until Tuesday for that, but this: this, you can have now.

A sad, lonely, unedited March snowfall photo.

The basics

This isn’t actually an in-depth curves tutorial; rather, I feel like I need to periodically remind people that they exist. They’re ridiculously easy (and ridiculously handy), and can be used in anything from vignetting, to increasing contrast and brightening up photos, to doing that hipster-faded thing.

Curves – brighter (think of it like a screen layer), darker (think of it like a multiply layer).

Unless you’ve gone and inverted your axes, pulling the curve upwards is going to add brightness, an S curve is going to increase contrast, and pulling the curve downwards will increase shadows. Dragging the endpoints inwards will add a more harsh change; think of it as brightening or darkening the shadows, rather than the midpoints. A curve in which the lower point is farther from the x=y line than the upper point will decrease contrast, doing that old-photograph thing that people seem to be into at the moment.

Curves – more contrast; less.

Keep reading! »

Perfection in a film clip: YSL Rouge Pur Couture Vernis à Lèvres

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Love this! Sneak behind the cut for the making of, as well – I can’t imagine spending so much time on such a meticulous task, but that’s artists for you, right? Creating brilliance where the rest of us dare not even tread ;)

Keep reading! »

Silicone-free at the drugstore | Garnier Fructis Pure Clean Clear 2 in 1 Shampoo review, photos

Friday, March 23, 2012

The product: Garnier Fructis Pure Clean Clear 2 in 1 Shampoo

As those of you who have gone ‘cone-free will know, finding silicone-free haircare for under $20 apiece can be… well, difficult, to say the least. More often than not, formulas (particularly conditioners and styling products) will rely on silicones to give hair that smooth, slippery feeling, and the ‘cone-free ones come with price tags around $50 (plus hours of your time on the silicone-free hunt) for the duo.

On top of all that, I’ve been itching for a 2 in 1 for those I’d-rather-be-sleeping mornings – so, finding out that Garnier just put out a new Pure Clean shampoo + conditioner? It was a bit like waking up (very groggily) from a good dream.

The clear, slightly greenish formula (a lot of that super-green colour is from the plastic, not the product) contains no silicones, parabens, or dyes, and comes packaged in a 50% recycled material PET plastic container – which is the most recyclable form there is, for those of you who (like me) would rather research polish than plastic. I’m not huge on the drugstore fresh! scent, but at just over $5 for a 384ml bottle, I can’t really complain.

As for how a clear 2 in 1 is for the long term? I’m not sure yet, but things have been going pretty well so far. The clear, super-sudsy formula has had me a bit on edge, though, so I figured I might as well have a look at what’s inside – a lot of conditioning agents will make products go milky or opaque, but maybe Garnier’s found the magic formula to keep things clear and conditioned.

Let’s talk ingredients…

Keep reading »

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