Thursday, August 18, 2011

UPDATED with new pictures: Jordana Easyshine Glossy Lip Color Review and Swatches

ETA: I retook the lip swatches for all of these; I'm still not completely pleased with some of them (blurry!), but the colors are all very accurate.  I wanted to update them because I really love these lippies––I wear Sweet Strawberry several times a week (impressive, considering how many lip products I have...)––and because it seems to be a popular post, and I didn't want people being disappointed by the swatches they found.  SO!  Without further ado, here's the original post with new pictures and minor edits.  Enjoy!

When the boyfriend was here, we gallivanted around a bit, which led to the happy happenstance of driving through Albany and the Kmart that resides there, and the Jordana, Milani, and E.L.F. that it contains.  I'd been wanting to check out the Jordana Easyshines since I'd seen reviews of them on MUA, but there are no stores that sell them in Eugene (I'd checked the Walgreens, but their Jordana selection was limited), so I jumped at the chance to get some.  The poor boyfriend had to listen to me hyperventilate about all the cheap pretties for half an hour, but was a very good sport about it--he seemed to find it cute, which makes me worry for his mental health.  I picked up several colors, though I do wish I'd splurged and gotten them all (next time I drive my brother up to school, I am so going back!).
The Easyshines are grouped on Jordana's website with the glosses, not the lipsticks, which I find puzzling. The ones I got are all quite pigmented, with very mild shine, but certainly not so much as to be termed a gloss (something I appreciate, since I hate getting my hair stuck in glosses!).  I was looking for my mother, too, since the Revlon tinted lip balm she uses was discontinued long ago and is no longer available on eBay.  She's warmer than I am (a true redhead!), so I picked out one of the browner shades with the hopes it would work on her.

Jordana Easyshines, left to right: Sweet Strawberry, Berry Colada, Sugar Plum, Sugar Cookie

The Easyshines come in a few finishes, though I'd say the biggest distinction is between creams and sparkles.  I got 2 of each.  They are all creamy and moisturizing with slight shine, and wear comfortably for about an hour (not bad for a glossy lip cream!).  The darker shades leave a mild stain, which makes them effectively last even longer (>2 hours).  They don't dry my lips out any, and I can reapply most of them without a mirror.  They all smell somewhat like their namesake, and have a mildly sweet taste, though neither the smell nor the taste last more than a few minutes after application (a bonus if you're sensitive to fragrance).

I'll start with the one I found most problematic, which is extremely disappointing, since it was the one I had the most hope for being a MLBB shade for me.
Jordana Easyshine Glossy Lip Color in Berry Colada; 1 swipe on the left, 3 on the right

Lip swatch, in sunlight (enlarge to see the glitters)

Lip swatch, in shade
Berry Colada, your base color is so perfect: a medium cool rose, exactly what I want my lips to be.  So why, oh why, do you have gold glitter??  Shimmer is one thing––but glitter?  Chunks that remain behind when the color has faded, giving me disco-queen sparkle lips?  Do. Not. Want.  The saddest part is, I bought 2 of the Berry Colada because I was so convinced it would be HG.  Admittedly, at less than $2 apiece, it's not like it's a huge waste, but still.  It's the principle of the thing!  Grade: B

The other shimmer color I got was intended for my mother, she of the warm-complected redheadedness. Sugar Cookie is the least pigmented out of all the ones I got, and the shimmer is subtler than that in Berry Colada.
Sugar Cookie; 1 swipe on the left, 3 swipes on the right.  You can see it's less buildable than Berry Colada.

Worn over the residue of another lipstick, in sunlight

Ditto, but in shade (enlarge to see the gold glitters)
My mother is a fan––it's a nice neutral for her that's easy to apply on the fly.  Worn over a cooler lippie, I can make it work for me, but it's not my favorite.  Grade: B

The other two shades I got are both cremes.  My go-to choice is Sweet Strawberry, a sheer red.

Sweet Strawberry; 1 swipe on the left, 3 on the right

Lip swatch, in sunlight

Lip swatch, in shade
It's pretty pigmented, but not so much that it overtakes my face, and it adds a nice level of moisture and shine to my lips.  It also smells great!  It's easy to apply without a mirror, though I do have to be careful to check my lips every so often (or just rub them together, which isn't really a problem for me...more like an obsessive nervous habit) to make sure I don't have the dreaded ring-around-the-mouth. Grade: A

The last shade I picked up, Sugar Plum, is by far the most pigmented; like Sweet Strawberry, it is a creme, and thus sparkle-free, but it takes a little more care to apply than Sweet Strawberry, since it's so dark.
Sugar Plum; 1 swipe on left, 3 on right

Lip swatch, in sunlight

Lip swatch, in shade

Lip swatch, in shade facing another direction (to show how it looks in darker, cooler light)

Lip swatch post-blotting, in sunlight

Lip swatch post-blotting, in shade
It makes a gorgeous dramatic lip, since its plummy tones really work well as a wearable vampy shade.  It's also very easy to apply straight from the tube, which I appreciate, though I definitely recommend having a mirror handy to make sure application is even, since it's so dark.  The intense pigmentation also means it lasts the longest out of all the colors I got, good for at least 2 hours, though the shine fades before then.  If you're not sure how you feel about darker, vampy shades, Sugar Plum is a great cheap way to experiment.  And the ease of application can't be beat, for a darker color!  It's pretty comparable to Wet N Wild Lip Shimmer in Spice in terms of color, but is better in pretty much every way––no shimmer, smoother, creamier, etc.  Grade: A

It is worth noting that the color in the tube is not the color when worn; you can see in the picture below it looks much warmer and more brick-like in the tube than it does on my skin, though this may have somewhat to do with the cooler undertones in my skin:

And here are all the swatches in a row, so you can see how they compare to each other:
Left to right: Sweet Strawberry, Berry Colada, Sugar Plum, Sugar Cookie

I'm looking forward to picking up some more of the cremes the next time I'm near a Kmart!

Pros: Moisturizing color, buildable, smooth, scented, cheap
Cons: Not terribly long-lasting, scented, hard to find (for me, at least; Jordana is carried at Walgreens [though the ones I've been to haven't carried the Easyshines], Duane Reade, Kmart, and Save Mart Supermarkets [I've never even heard of them])

Quality: 9.25
Effectiveness: 4.5 (they're supposed to be really shiny, which they're not)
Ease of Use: 4.75 (the darkest shade does need to be applied in front of a mirror, but besides that, they're hassle-free)
Senses: 5 (they all smell like their names!  So delicious)
Pigmentation: 4.5
Duration: 4
Consistency: 4.5
Price: 5 (I got them for $1.50 each, but retail is $2–seriously not bad!)
Value: 4.5 (they only come with 0.07 oz, which is about half the size of standard lipsticks, but the average size of slim shiny/moisturizing lipsticks)
Packaging: -0.5 (the top pictures show the lipsticks as retracted as they get––this means that there is a little bit of product that sticks up, which gets caught on the lid when you're putting it back on.  Very irritating!)
Grade: A- (Sweet Strawberry and Sugar Plum are the better two, while Berry Colada and Sugar Cookie are less awesome because of the annoying glitter in the former and lack of pigmentation in the latter)

What about you?  Have you ever tried anything from Jordana?  What did you think?  Do the Easyshines appeal to you?
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