I am so sick right now, I feel like nothing in this article is going to make sense. Words are weird. Everything’s weird.
I had to make one of those piñata cakes that’s been floating around Pinterest for my sister’s ninth birthday. It involves baking two round cakes in bowls, cutting them in half, hollowing them out, and filling the inside with candy before frosting the two halves together. I was so temporarily stupid thanks to this cold and cold medicine, I used two different sized bowls. This cake is going to turn out looking... weird.
Whatever, I also got her a fox and a Totoro backpack, so I think she’ll be able to deal with the cake disappointment.
Anyway, when I’m this out of it, the last thing I need is a complicated beauty look. I can only handle simple things right now. Simple as in: here, take this colorful crayon and color your eyelids with it.
Sounds fun, right? It IS fun. I only buy fun things (my sister will soon be able to attest to that) and I think that these e.l.f. Essential Jumbo Eyeshadow Sticks are a lot of fun. They’re also super-easy to apply, which is exactly what I need right now.
I have three different colors and I thought I’d walk you guys through each one. Please excuse my spaced-out expressions in the pictures; I’m on the verge of death.
There are a few things to remember when using these. The most important is to use a primer on your eyelids first. (Mine is also by e.l.f.) Secondly, these can get very messy, especially the darker colors. Usually, I use my fingers for everything--fixing smudged cat eyes, blending eyeshadow, etc.--but learned the hard way that you cannot use your fingers to blend or fix mistakes with this product. You’ll just end up smearing it all over your face. Use a brush or sponge for blending. To clean it up around the edges when you’re done (a necessary step, except for the gold one) you can either use a q-tip or a makeup remover pen. I just got one from--surprise!--e.l.f. I’m nothing if not brand-loyal, especially when the brand is so affordable.
I’m going to show you the easiest one to wear first. Little Miss Thing is a warm, shimmery gold. I just colored it all over my eyelids and then paired it with a pretty berry lip (Dark Wine by Wet ‘n’ Wild). It’s really that easy.
This shade is subtle enough that there was no need to clean up the edges at all. The primer helps it to to stay on, but I like to keep the little stick in my bag for the occasional touch up whenever the gold fades a little or migrates towards my creases. It’s so easy to apply that I don’t mind.
I was a little skeptical about Turkish Coffee at first. It’s basically just brown and I’ve never worn brown eyeshadow before. However, I bought it thinking it’d be a good look for when I want a dark, smoky eye without the harshness that black can add to my face.
In the end I was surprised by how much I liked it. It turned out to be the most matte of the three shades. I think the matte bronze color makes for a perfect eyeshadow color: not as subtle as the gold, and still sexy but not as in-your-face as black.
Speaking of black... Black Midnight is the most dramatic shade and the trickiest to apply. It has the potential to be really good for a messy smoky eye, the kind that goes with tousled bedhead and black leather skinnies. I don’t have black leather pants, however, and bedhead is just how my hair looks every day because you can get away with not caring with a pixie.
Suffice it to say that I probably don’t have the sexy, too cool for school look that is required to be able to pull off the messy smoky eye. That doesn’t mean I didn’t give it a try, though.
After a good base of primer, I just applied a thick, messy black coat all over my eyelids. I went a bit further above and outwards than necessary, but no worries because the next step is to clean it up a little bit to give it a sharper line.
I didn’t like using the makeup remover pen for this one because it just turned the pen black, which created more smudges in the end; I used a q-tip instead.
Finally, make sure to keep the black away from the inner corners of your eyes, or just clean up that area afterwards. I like to keep that area bright, otherwise the look becomes too raccoon-eyes for me. I kept my lips bare, as traditional smoky eye rules dictate. I regret that now because I think my face looks weird without some lip color.
You can also blend two colors together. In fact, you should because that’s exactly the sort of thing that these are made for. I paired Turkish Coffee with Little Miss Thing for a graduated bronze/gold look.
Turkish Coffee went on my eyelids and then I blended Little Miss Thing above the crease, as well as a little bit into the brown that was already there. I was pretty pleased with this combination; the gold added just the right amount of shimmer.
So the pros of these jumbo eyeshadow sticks are that they’re easy and fast to apply; they have pretty colors and, in some of them, shimmer; and they’re very easy to blend or build for the look that you want. You also won’t get eyeshadow powder all over your face and clothes.
The cons? Well, the black and gold both tend to fade a bit. That’s not such a big deal for the gold; it’s so subtle that it fades gracefully. The black did cake into my creases somewhat. I have insanely oily, creased eyelids though (it’s my curse), so it might not be so bad on someone else.
And as I mentioned before, they’re easy to apply and small enough to just tuck into your purse for a touchup. The black can also be messy to apply, but that’s easy enough to fix with a quick swipe once you’re done.
For $2, I can totally ignore those cons. In fact, if my local Target stocks more colors I’m planning to hoard enough to rival my Revlon Lip Butter collection. Have any of you guys tried these; if so, what did you think?