02.08.2013
1
8
Eye Beam Double-Ended Brightener
Rating
$22
Category:Makeup > Concealers & Highlighters > Highlighter
Last Updated:02.08.2013
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:No
Review Overview

This dual-sided pencil offers two flesh-toned shades, each needing routine sharpening to maintain a fine point. The texture of both is smooth and they glide over skin, being initially creamy but setting to a dry finish that stays put better than expected (thanks to talc, which is the third ingredient). This pencil brightens the eye area with each shade’s soft, pearlescent finish. When applied sparingly and softly blended with a brush, the effect can be flattering. This is worth a look if you don’t mind pencils that require regular sharpening. Note that you can achieve the same effect by using a tiny brush to apply a pearlescent powder eyeshadow to the inner corners of your eyes.

Claims
Ingredients
Brand Overview

Smashbox At-A-Glance

Strengths: A unique Anti-Shine product that is a must-try if you have very oily skin; mostly good foundations with a neutral range of shades; improved powder eyeshadows; the great Photo Finish Lipstick; a lash primer that really makes a difference; well-constructed makeup brushes that cost less than the department-store competition.

Weaknesses: A small, mostly boring assortment of products priced higher than they should be; a couple of products contain irritants that have no benefit for skin; several lackluster makeup categories, including concealer, blush, eye pencils, and brow shaders; the Cream Eyeliner is a mistake if you expect any amount of longevity; several specialty products that should offer more for the money (and the one with sunscreen leaves skin vulnerable to UVA damage).

Perhaps one of the most interesting things about Smashbox is that its name refers to the early, accordion-style cameras and that Smashbox is first and foremost a Hollywood-based photography studio. The company's creators, Dean and Davis Factor, have their heritage in makeup—their great-grandfather was the legendary makeup artist Max Factor. However, this seems to be a case where the proverbial apple didn't fall all that close to the tree. It is apparent that Dean and Davis are better at their respective careers as CEO and photographer, respectively, than at creating a cosmetics line. The makeup, which debuted in 1996, began as a collection of trendy and fashion-forward colors coupled with a pleasingly neutral palette of foundations, concealers, and powders. Nowadays, many of the colors are too sheer to register on medium to dark skin tones, shiny products abound, and several of the complexion-enhancing products just don't look as natural on skin as they should. In fact, the foundations and concealers could use some updating; they haven't kept pace with what other makeup artistry lines are launching, and don't demonstrate much longevity under normal conditions, as in day-to-day casual makeup.

Realizing that celebrities sell products better than the product claims themselves, Smashbox steadily capitalizes on its ties to Hollywood and often mentions several famous faces who wear their products. Their counter brochures follow suit, tempting women to sit down with a Smashbox artist to get the star treatment. It's easy to get caught up in the hype, but as a comprehensive line Smashbox doesn't have what it takes to create A-list glamour, at least not if you're looking for cutting-edge textures and finishes.

For more information about Smashbox, now owned by Estee Lauder, call (888) 763-1361 or visit www.smashbox.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula Begoun herself.

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06.28.2014
Portable Dual Function Eyelighter

One end is somewhat waxy, for brow highlights, the other is creamy, for highlighting the inner corner of the eye or using on the lid. As a pencil it's smaller than highlighters in a pan, making it useful for one's purse makeup bag. It is not a skinny pencil, so you need a sharpener that includes a bigger opening. Using as intended, you won't need to sharpen often. I prefer pencils that need sharpening, because I find the product doesn't dry out anywhere nearly as quickly automatic pencils do.

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Ellen P.
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