Sunday, August 21, 2016

Essence Cosmetics Autumn/Winter Releases || Overview & Review || Lots of pictures!!

Hello again! Today's as you've probably guessed, I'm going to go over a bunch of new products from Essence that are coming out for this fall/winter season! I was sent these products to test out, but this post is not sponsored, and my opinions are completely honest and 100% my own! I didn't receive everything coming out in this launch, but I did receive A LOT of it, so hopefully this post can give you an idea of what's coming from Essence, and some good swatches of the various products!

I'll also be using at least some of these items in upcoming tutorials and GRWMs, so look forward to those to see how these products work on the the face as part of a whole look! And as always, feel free to let me know anyting you really want to see used!

My thoughts and swatches of everything will be below the jump, since this is going to be a long and picture heavy post... but here's a quick look at everything I recieved:

the haul

I'm going to try to break everything down into logical sections, so click the section below if you want to jump to one specific part, or just scroll on down. =)

  1. Nails
  2. Eyes
  3. Face
  4. Lips

Nail polishes:


As you can see above, I received 6 polishes, two from their I Love Trends new Porcelains line, and four from their regular The Gel polish line, which is already a favourite of mine.

The Gel nail polish range comes in these adorable, unique little bottles, about half the size of a regular polish at 8ml, but who really uses up most polishes anyways? They come in a range of great colours, and there are always new shades for the new seasons. I find they have good staying power (at least my average for most polishes, which is 3-4 days. Though I have definitely worn these polishes from time to time for a whole week) and are plenty shiny (though you should, of course be using a top coat over the colour). Also, they're crazy inexpensive at only ~$3!

I'm pretty sure the Trends polishes are based on the same formula, but this is where Essence seems t play with new finishes, whatever is really in at the time. The last ones I tried were the metals, which were great, and these new Porcelain ones are so unique, at least compared to what I've seen! They are still glossy and smooth, but they look almost like they have a powdery finish under the gloss but without leaving a horrible, sandy texture on your nails. The effect is soft and pretty, and the grey-blue porcelain is by far my favourite shade I received.

It looks like the Trends are a Loblaws exclusive, and retail for $2.49.

polish swatches

The swatches 1-4 are the regular gel nail polishes in the colours: 1. Be Awesome Tonight, 2. Free Hugs, 3. Ice Cream Party, 4. Grey Zone. The other two are the Trends: 5. Pretty Little Thing, and 6. Blue Symphony. As mentioned above, Blue Symphony is my sure favourite!



For eyeshadows, I was sent 7 single powder shadows from their new The Velvets line, as well as 2 chubby shadow/liner pencils.

chubby pencil swatches

The chubby pencils I received are beautifully pigmented and practically metallic! They're also meant to be waterproof, which is great. The concept really reminds me of the Maybelline Color Tattoos, an like those, you could totally use these are bases or on their own. I haven't tested them for creasing yet, but they set and didn't want to budge from my hand, so that's a great sign! The colours swatched above are: Peach Perfect and Light Me Up. There are 2 other colours as well, and these should retail for $4.99.

eyeshadow swatches

Above are the swatches of the single shadows, and they are so much more butter and pigmented than I expected! I've tried Essence shadows before, which is hit or miss and not very impressive... but these are lovely! I used some of them in a GRWM that will be up in a week or two on my channel, and I loved the colours, pigmentation, and how easy they were to apply and blend! I would definitely recommend giving this line a go if any of the colours appeal. These are an e-commerce exclusive and sell for $2.49 each.

The dark brown shade did arrive smashed, and I should try to press it back, but it still swatched great, and luckily, the compacts shut really tightly and none of the powder has leaked out even if I shake it around, which is so great.

brow gel and eye base

These next two products I was pretty excited to try out, since they are follow-ups to some of my favourite Essence products! Both these are the same great formulas I already love, in new colours.

brow gel applicator

I've talked about this before, but the Make Me Brow gel is basically a drugstore dupe of the Benefit Give Me Brow. It's a tinted gel with fibres in a tiny bottle with a tiny little brush, and sells for $3.99. This is a brand new colour, which is great, because there were originally only a very pale blonde shade, and a very deep brown. For me, I like a bold brow, and this new middle shade is a little lighter than I like, but I am still glad it's an option. It's much close to my natural brows than the other two, and is a great middle shade for anyone who found the other 2 shades a little extreme.

eyeshadow base applicator

The I Love Stage eyeshadow base is a longtime holy-grail favourite of mine. If you watch my videos, you'll know it's the only eye primer I ever use. It's inexpensive, it works well, and it helps to cover my veiny lids. This is the same formula, but in a new, paler colour. They're calling this one the I Love Colour Intensifying base, because it's meant to amplify the colours of your shadows, kind of like using a white primer, but a little less extreme.

As you can see below, the more yellow-toned shade was the I Love Stage, and the pale one is the I Love Colour. They are both great, and personally I don't have a preference, but this new shade will be great for anyone who thought the old one was too orange or yellow, which is certainly a complaint I have heard before.

eyeshadow base swatches

The new shade is very similar in tone, in my opinion to the Urban Decay Primer Potion original, but with higher coverage, so it still adds some coverage to thin eyelids, and I still find it a better, more effective formula.

Next, I've got some liners to show you. One white kohl pencil, and three liquid eyeliners.

whtie liner

This kohl pencil is creamy and blendable, but like other kohl pencils I've tried, it doesn't seem to set very well. As such, I would probably only ever use this as a base for eyeshadows.

eyeliner applicator

Both of the dippable liquid liners—waterproof and non-waterproof—had the same kinda-chunky felt-tip brush. It's easy to draw with and holds plenty of product, but it is far too thick in my opinion. Your only option with this format is a very thick, bold eyeliner. Even the point is too wide for a subtle line! Both formulas do dry to a beautiful, opaque matte black, though, and the waterproof is great and long lasting, so if bold liner is your thing, these may be great.

liner swatches

Obviously the white line is the kohl liner. The next two are swatches of the dippable liquid liners. They're basically identical, but the waterproof may have mattified and dried quicker (it's the third line). The fourth line is the felt-pen style waterproof liquid liner, which I forgot to photograph alone. It has a longer,narrower tip, which I thought was going to make it far superior, but it is much drier and very very hard to draw with because of that! I had to keep going over the same lines for opacity, and that makes for some jagged, unclean lines. Huge disappointment.

All the liquid liners are $3.99, and the kohl pencils are $4.49 (and also available in black and brown).


Unfortunately there were no waterproof mascaras in this launch, but there are 3 nice mascaras for you folks who don't like waterproof or just don't care.

mascara forbidden volume

The Forbidden Volume mascara has a slightly conical wand and a nice thick mousse-y formula meant to build volume. It sounds from the release like both this and the Rebel (below) are the same formula with different brushes. I haven't tried this one out yet, but I feel like it will probably be a little more volumizing, where the Rebel is a little more lengthening.

mascara forbidden volume rebel

The Rebele Forbidden Volume mascara definitely has more of my kid of brush, since I love the big, thick, dense brushes, though this one is a little harder than the original to get the bottom lashes with. See further down for pictures of this mascara in use!

mascara top coat

Finally, the Forbidden Volume False Lash topcoat has fibres and is meant to be used any time in the day to refresh your mascara and add length. I used it below as a third coat on the Rebel mascara, but haven't tried it as a mascara refresher because I'm not sure it would pair well with a waterproof mascara.

mascara - 1 coats

Above: One coat of the Rebel Forbidden Volume mascara. (excuse my no-makeup face) Pretty basic, nothing special. Definitely needs a second coat for my liking.

mascara - 2 coats

Above: After a second coat. Lashes are a little fuller and blacker, and a bit longer. I was surprised at the separation that this mascara offered, as well.

mascara - 2 coats and topcoat

Above: In addition to the 2 coats of the Rebel Forbidden Volume mascara, I added a coat of the topcoat. I'm not usually a fan of fibre mascaras, but this one managed to hold onto it's fibres and not drop them in my eyes. The formula is a bit wetter than the other two mascaras, and made my lashes long, thick, and spikey. It's a look I really like, actually, but spikey lashes can be a divisive topic, so draw your own conclusions. =P


blush and highlighter

Next there is a new blush and a highlighter The highlighter sells for $5.49, and the blush is an e-commerce exclusive that sells for $3.99 and comes in 2 shades.


The shade of this blush looks really pretty. It's soft, not at all chalky, and a little shimmery without being over the top. It is very light on the pigmentation, though, as you will see in the swatch below. I'm meh about this one.


Essence describes this highlighter as working for all skin tones (which I mostly agree with), and as being subtle... While I'm sure you can make this shimmery, gold-toned highlighter subtle with a very light hand and a fan brush, it can also be super intense and gorgeous! Using a small blush brush from ELF, this highlight is strong and glowy and I freaking love it!

blush and highlighter swatches

Hopefully you can see what I mean about the blush's paleness. I had to swatch quite heavily to make it show up this much, and I can apply pretty liberally to my cheeks and not get a ton of colour... which could be good for some people? Also, that highlight... god it's pretty!

setting spray

Another product I was pretty happy to test out was this setting spray! I love setting sprays, and it's so great that more drugstore brands are starting to offer them! This one sells for $3.99, which is so much cheaper even than other drugstore options. I'm still making up my mind, but I like this one so far. It's simple, with a short list of ingredients, no fragrance or scent, and no stickiness or heaviness on the skin. It isn't mattifying or dewy, so it doesn't try to change the texture of your makeup, and has a really nice fine mist, so it doesn't soak your face in big droplets of water.


lip glosses

There are actually several new lip products in the A/W collection this year, but I only recieved these gloss-type products. A little unfortunate since I'm not a gloss-lover, but I was excited to try out these lip oils. I was hoping they'd satisfy my cravings to buy the tinted oils from YSL and Sephora Collection. =P

The BB Lip Glosses sell for $4.49, and the Lip Oils sell for $3.99. Both products are Loblaws exclusives and come in more shades than shown here.

lip gloss applicator

The BB Lip Glosses come in a squeeze-tube with a slanted plastic applicator tip, which is not a personal favourite, but it's not the worst possible thing. These glosses are enriched with vitamin E and shea butter to be really nourishing and moisturizing, and I was surprised to see how pigmented they were as well as being good for your lips!

lip gloss swatches

I found that they stayed on the lips pretty well through drinking, but not eating, without feeling heavy or sticky, and did feel quite protective. I can see myself possibly continuing to wear the paler shades but will pass the red shade on to someone else.

lip oil applicator

While the twist closure on these packages felt really rough and cheap, that's the only thing I really disliked about this product. The doefoot wand applicator is great and holds a good amount of product to cover the lips. There is a faint pleasant fruity scent to this product, but it doesn't linger or have a flavour. It isn't sticky, nor does it feel like your lips are geasy and covered in oil, which is good. It stays on the lips and hydrates, as well, instead of eventually sinking in as a plain oil might. I quite like these, and will probably continue to wear them as lip balms.

lip oil swatches

While there is a slight colour to these in a hand swatch, on the lips it's basically indiscernible, and I can't tell the pink from the honey toned gloss. A little more pigmentation could have made these even more fun, but they're still nice as a shiney balm.


So that's everything that I received from the Essence Autumn/Winter collection. Let me know if you have tried anything above, want to try anything after seeing this post, or if there's anything you want me to feature in a tutorial!

Thanks for reading!

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