Monday, 25 April 2011

on the great big illamasqua review

I've been meaning to review products from Illamasqua for some time. I first came across them a year ago when a friend hooked me up with one of their nail polishes (a gorgeous gold called Victory) and one of their rich liquid foundations. Ever since there have been different products I've fallen in love with (their eyelashes for one are brilliant)...but today thought would focus on a few key products that I tend to use a lot -pretty much everything from the Throb collection back in February - namely because red and black are my default colours but also because think they give a good overview of the other products. Today am going to be looking at Illamasqua Rich Liquid Foundation in RF140, intense lipgloss in succubus, lipstick in sangers and two nail polishes - throb (red) and scorn (a matte black.)

Foundation
The first thing I noticed about the rich liquid foundation was how thick it was. It does have a nice creamy feel, but for the most part I feel when applying it if felt cloying and very heavy. That said it does provide a really good coverage and provides a clean matte base to work with. If you're looking for a blank slate to work with, Illamasqua rich liquid foundation does provide a good base. I find the colour quite prominent, and RF140 was way too dark for me. It was very yellow and just made me look like I had a bad tan and a liver infection. For the kind of coverage it provides, I do prefer Estee Lauder's maximum cover for this kind of thing, but I feel for a big night out and if I had a better colour match I would be more open to this. This colour is best mixed with some moisturiser to thin it out as otherwise might be a bit too heavy even for a night out.

Lipstick
I do love me a good red lipstick, so it will come as no suprise that I love Illamasqua's lipstick in Sangers. It's pretty much your standard red, I'd say it's quite warm in tone and has an almost vintage pin up tone to it. Very vampy and very matte. It reminds me of Mac's Ruby Woo - except no where near as chalky. The application was fairly easy and the colour is long wearing (roughly 6 hours.) The colour builds up quite well and stays put, and comes in this gorgeous elegant square black packaging. It feels mature and elegant, while still having an edge. If all Illamasqua's lipsticks are as long wearing as this I may just be convert over from MAC. Maybe. I've got my eye on a warm coral pink matte called Scandal that might just be the perfect day time lipstick. At £15.50 it's not exactly purse friendly...but the long wear and the packaging make it worth it.
Lipgloss
The think I enjoyed about the lipstick was that it was scent free, not so with the lipgloss - but that's to be expected. Succubus has this really gorgeous smell of raspberries that isn't sweet or sickly. It's very pigmented and I found the coverage very pull. The colour itself is billed as a blood red (pretty much the best description I can think of). I'd say it is far warmer than Sangers and has a nice finish. However while it doesn't feel too sticky on the lips it almost feels waxy and I found my hair took quite the liking to it. I'm not really a lipgloss person...ever, however the colour and the staying power of Succubus has me sold. I'm not sure if I'd be tempted to try any of the other intense lipglosses...although Gender (a bright blue) looks pretty amazing. I'm still not completely sold on glosses but maybe it's time to extend my repertoire.
Nail Polish- Scorn
I have nothing but praise for Illamasqua's nail polishes and have no qualms about saying that they are probably some of the best polishes on the market. You'll have to forgive my application skills, and my crap camera, you can find another view and better pictorials here.
Scorn is a gorgeous matte black, and what I like about it looks a bit like latex for your nails. It has the amazing rubber effect. It takes a couple of applications to build up the effect but the over all effect is striking. I found Scorn did take a little bit of time to dry between applications but once it's on it's quite durable.
Nail Polish - Throb
Every girls needs a red nail polish. It's just one of those finishing touches. Throb is the perfect red polish, not too orange, but no too deep - quite bright with a shine to the finish. The application for this colour was easy and Throb, unlike Scorn - only really needs one coat though you can build it up. Once more the lasting power is great and doesn't chip too much (it's passed the bar test.) £13.50. So worth it.

Overall
As you can probably guess I'm pretty much a fangirl for Illamasqua's nail polishes. I'm yet to have a bad experience with them. I have covered my default colours here, but their range is so varied and I love their experimentation with colours and finishes. I'm dying to try some of their neons - they look astounding. Overall my experience with the brand has been positive, although I would be reluctant to try their foundation again. I'd like to know your experiences with the brand though - and what products I haven't covered here (blushes, eyeshadows?) and if they are worth giving a wee shot.
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23 comments

  1. Iv been looking at the Illamasqua items for a while, mainly the nail polish. So glad you done this review I will def pop one in my basket

    thanks

    xx

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  2. very interesting post - never heard of this brand before. Where can you get it from? :o) xx

    http://mystyledefine.blogspot.com/

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  3. i love illamasqua and have been pondering purchasing a red nail varnish from the range for a while now, i love the one you've featured and think i'll definitely have to make the purchase now! definitely can't beat a good red nail polish. x

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  4. I haven't heard of this brand before either-the lipstick looks delish!

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  5. The lipgloss looks awesome

    xx

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  6. I've never tried anything from Illamasqua but I am a sucker for a red lip and that lipgloss looks divine! Also, hello AWESOME name - succubus is like an all time FAVOURITE word of mine.

    Yeah. Supercool.

    Where can you buy Illamasqua stuff from? I'm a bit of a cool-makeup-virgin, Superdrug usually suffices for me!

    xx

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  7. Hey ladies...glad you like the review.
    Kirsty - illamasqua have a stand in debhanams, between urban decay and smashbox. The girls are total sweethearts and will look after you. They always have the most uhmazing lookbooks.

    Everyone- pretty sure illamasqua have stands at various department stores throughout the country, you can find your nearest store via their website or shop online.

    x

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  8. Just read your comment on my blogm, I've never tried Barbara Daly, I don't know if my tesco actually stocks it though

    xx

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  9. I think I might brave Debenhams to have a wee look at the foundations and lipstick (I hate Debenhams, but this sounds worth it!).
    Does the foundation look ok on, or does it give that death-mask look that some thick bases sometimes do? It can be quite hard to find a full-coverage foundation that doesn't look like heavy-duty stage make-up!

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  10. Julia - if want a full coverage foundation go for estee lauder double wear. It's the holy grail of foundations, I think this one might be a bit too heavy. If you get a trip to tesco the barbara daly one's are fantastic. You need to go to a big tesco though. The concealer is pretty sweet as well are you are looking at spending about 8 of your british, so quite pocket friendly. I do like most illamasqua products, but the foundation is the one I'm still not completely sold on. x

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  11. I quite like Illamasqua but it's hard to find in Ireland. That being said, an online purchase is definitely in order if I want very nice blood red nails like yours (and I do).

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  12. I really fancy some Illamasqua lipstick. I've heard so many great things. Nars do great lipsticks too btw - better than MAC, I think.

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  13. I love 'throb' i think i shall be investing post paris x

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  14. Great post, I've never tried this particular brand before. I've had a little look at some of their products and maybe in the future when I have a bit of spare cash I might try some of them out!

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  15. I have never actually tried this brand of make-up. I don't like the idea of a heavy feeling foundation, but if it has good coverage, I'm all for it! Loving those nailpolishes. Great review! :)SarahD

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  16. I've never tried any Illamasqua products before but I keep hearing good things, will definitely have to find somewhere that stocks them so I can have a look. The nail polishes especially look like they're really good quality and worth investing in.
    I love the names of the colours too, 'throb' teehee.

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