This long-wearing cream-to-powder eyeshadow seems tenacious enough to live up to its 24-hour claim, but we don’t recommend keeping any cosmetic around your eyes for that long; after all, at some point you need to sleep, and sleeping in makeup is always a bad idea! Housed in a screw-top jar, application is easy with fingertips or a synthetic brush, with plenty of time to blend. Once the formula sets, it resists creasing, flaking, and smearing until removed. The problem is that once this shadow dries, it tends to exaggerate wrinkly lids.
Another use for this is as an eyeshadow primer, which seemed to help (but not completely eliminate) the wrinkly lid issue. We found that layering powder shadow on top of Color Tattoo produced amazingly rich results, but only if you pair your shadow with a complementary shade. Only a handful of these shades will work for daytime wear (Bad to the Bronze and Tough as Taupe are best bets), but if you are looking to amp up your evening look, these could be a fun way to enhance your depth of color while ensuring your eye design will last all night.
- Long-wear formula doesn’t smear, smudge, or crease.
- Blends easily, applies best with fingertips or synthetic hair brush.
- Can work as a color-enriching primer underneath powder shadow for a glamorous evening look.
- Accentuates wrinkly lids when worn alone.
- Screw-top jar packaging makes the product prone to drying out.
- Shade selection is limited, with mostly over-the-top bright or frosty options.
Though the shade selection is not nearly as impressive, Maybelline’s Color Tattoo is nearly a drugstore double for MAC’s excellent but pricey Paint Pot.
Maybelline is one of the best-known and most recognized mass-market makeup lines in the world—it's available in 90 countries. Throughout its long history, which began in 1915 when T. L. Wilson founded the company and named it after his sister, Mabel, and Vaseline (which he combined with coal dust to concoct a mascara for her), the company has prided itself on bringing innovative products to the marketplace. L'Oreal purchased the company in early 1996 and that's when things really started getting much better. Both companies specialize in offering a large selection of lipsticks, nail polishes, and mascaras, and many of their foundations have the same strengths and weaknesses (smooth textures and finishes plus the inclusion of sunscreens that are often without much-needed UVA-protecting ingredients).
The powders, several mascaras, pencils, matte-finish concealers, and Superstay Lipcolor are impressive and inexpensive. Although L'Oreal remains the more sophisticated and refined of the two lines (and now they have credible products, not just sleek ads, to back this assertion), Maybelline's latest urban image is a positive step, as many of their latest launches have been innovative without resorting to "been-there, done-that" gimmicks. Price-wise, Maybelline is the least expensive of the L'Oreal-owned cosmetic lines (which also includes Lancome, Biotherm, Vichy, and Kiehl’s), and smart shoppers will note the similarities among brands that, with conscientious shopping, can really save you money without sacrificing quality or performance.
For more information about Maybelline New York, owned by L'Oreal, call (800) 944-0730 or visit their interactive Web site at www.maybelline.com.