Friday, 11 March 2011

Back in Matte Black

This is something I've been working up to doing for a while now, a comparison post of matte black eyeshadows.
As it turns out, I had a few more matte blacks than I thought. I wonder if there's a rehab programme for black shadow addicts?

All together, I've included 12 in this post by various brands. Some are solid, matte black whilst others are more of a charcoal.

Sugarpill - Bulletproof

This is one of my favourites. Rich, well-pigmented & great texture. It's a dream to apply & blend. Don't have as much trouble with fall-out when applying as I do with some other matte blacks.
Packaging is gorgeous, cute Sugarpill logo on a clear lid with a black plastic base. It's also sturdy too.
One of my top matte blacks.

Urban Decay - Black Dog

From the Black Palette. You want an extremely pigmented, blendable, blacker-than-black matte? This is the one for you. Upon swatching all of these shadows, I noticed that Black Dog is darker than the others. When it says black, it means business.
The downside? You'll have to buy this as part of the palette.

Make Up Forever - No. 4

Excuse the "loved" appearance, this has been in my stash for a while & has seen a fair bit of use.
This & Bulletproof are very similar. I did find when swatching that I had to swipe this a couple of times more than Bulletproof to get a good swatch.
It's a decent, solid, blendable black shadow. Good pigmentation, little fall-out, wears well.

Kat Von D - Lucifer

Great matte black. As with Black Dog, it's a palette-only deal. However, it has appeared in five of the KVD palettes: Ludwig, Beethoven, Metal Orchestra, True Love & Gypsy.
Good Pigmentation, easy to blend, smooth texture.

MAC - Carbon

Probably the best known of the matte blacks. Yes, it has good pigmentation but I've found that sometimes it can be quite hard & chalky. This seems particularly true of the pans that come in the pre-made quads. It's not as easy to blend as some of the other shadows here but it will stay on until you take it off.

Bulletproof, Black Dog, MUFE 4, Lucifer, Carbon
These swatches were applied straight to skin, no primer used. Black Dog is definitely the blackest but they're all deep, dark blacks. This was taken with the flash on.

MAC - Black Black pigment (old style packaging)

A PRO colour, it's deeper than Carbon. Blends a little better too. The downside is, with it being a pigment, the fall-out can be hugely messy. Definitely one to apply before foundation.
Pigment jars will last an age, you should get a lot of mileage out of one of these. Especially as you only need a small amount.

NARS - Pandora Duo

Good quality matte black that comes with a great white shadow. Maybe not the darkest, but it's definitely not a washed-out grey/black.
NARS can be a pretty spendy brand, but you tend to get what you pay for.

Illamasqua - Gimp

Described on Illamasqua's site as a slate grey-black (very accurate). Lestat is Illamasqua's pure black, sadly I haven't got around to buying that yet (what is wrong with me?!).
Great pigmentation, applies exactly as it looks in the pan. Good, blendable texture. Makes for a great smoky eye or a good liner, used wet or dry.

Urban Decay - Perversion

Less black than Black Dog. Although it's definitely a matte, Perversion has a slight sheen to it once applied.
It's akin to MAC's Typographic in both texture & colour. More of a charcoal than a full-on black. Blends really well & has a great texture that's not at all dry or chalky.

MAC - Typographic

Not as dark as Carbon, Typographic is more of a charcoal than a true black. What it lacks in depth, it more than makes up for in texture.
One of the Matte2 shadows. Super blendable, easy to apply & never dry.

Armani - Manta Ray duo

Limited edition. Comes paired with a taupe-ish shade that, when paired, make for an easy smoky eye.
It's a nice black that can be used for a daytime smoky since it isn't as deep & dark as some other shades.
It doesn't hold up to some other matte blacks for me because it's faded somewhat by the end of the day, even when used with a good primer.

Black Black pigment, Pandora black, Gimp, Perversion, Typographic, Manta Ray black, Givenchy Le Prissme Showy Black

There's an extra black on there. It's from the Givency Le Prissme quad in Showy Black, four blacks with different finishes in a tiny, cute quad.
Once again, the swatches are taken with the flash on & no primer on the skin. The shiny finish to Perversion is quite apparent here but it's a little less so once applied to the eyes.

Of all the shadows, the winners in my book are Urban Decay's Black Dog, Kat Von D's Lucifer, MUFE No. 4 & Sugarpill's Bulletproof.

If you're in the market for a new palette, then the choice between Lucifer & Black Dog depends on whether you want purely dark colours (The Black Palette) or something with more colour options (the KVD palettes).

If it's a single pan black shadow you're looking for, either MUFE or Bulletproof are great choices. Of the two, Bulletproof is my first pick. Great shadow, texture & pigmentation-wise, wear-time is fantastic (lasts all day, doesn't crease when I use it with a primer) it has cute packaging & it comes in a huge pan for a great price. There's no down sides to Bulletproof, I highly recommend it if you're looking for a really good matte black shadow.

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