Review: Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Eyeshadow in Bone
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One day not so long ago, I decided that I desperately needed a white/nude cream base for my eyeshadows. There was a reason for it at the time but at this point I have no freaking clue why I wanted one so badly. I’ve already tried NYX Milk and the white NYX eyeshadow base without much success (crease city with both of them, no matter how little I used) so I ventured out into the online wilderness to see if there were any options from higher-end brands. And I tell you what, there’s not a lot top pick from if you want something with no shimmer in it. After much hemming and hawing, I settled on Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Eyeshadow in Bone.
The cream eyeshadow comes in small glass pot that has a square base and a round lid. I think that’s sort of an odd choice aesthetically, but it does give you something to grab onto so it’s easier to open. All the pieces are sturdy so it doesn’t feel like the lid will crack if you tighten it down too much in an effort to keep it from drying out. I unintentionally did a drop test with this one and it passed with flying colors (no, literally, it flew about halfway across the room before it landed). The one thing I’m not so thrilled about is the mouth of the jar. I think the best tool for applying this shadow is a standard-issue finger (more on that in a minute), and that’ll work just fine – until the product starts getting used up. The opening isn’t very wide, so after a certain point you’ll need to use either a brush or the tip of your finger to get the product out. That’ll be a tricky prospect if I ever manage to get my nails to grow out again, but I guess I’ll deal with that problem when I come to it. I suppose they were trying to minimize the surface area that could get exposed to air, but anything that makes accessing the product more difficult is a bad design move, in my humble opinion. Aside from that, the jar is just the tiniest hair too thick for a slim Muji drawer. Technically it fits, but the lid can catch on the bottom of the next drawer and cause both to pull out when you open one. End result here being that I have to store this in a deeper drawer, separate from my other cream shadows (#FWP).
Bone is a nice color for an eyeshadow base. It’s described as an off-white, which is pretty accurate if you build it up. It goes on a bit sheer but builds up pretty easily – see the first photo in this section for an example of one layer vs three layers. Depending on how much of your own skin color you let show through, I think this shade could look good on a lot of people. It would be close to invisible on very light skin, though, and I can easily imagine it looking chalky on very dark skin. Just as I was hoping, the finish is totally matte. It’s a really nice lid color for a natural look, if you’re wearing it on its own.
I rummaged through my collection to see if I had similar shades in powder shadows and surprisingly, I didn’t see much that was all that close. I sometimes use Buff from Lorac Pro 2 and Laura Mercier Vanilla Nuts as powder base colors though, so I pulled them out to compare. Against those two, Bone looks almost pink. Buff is more yellow, and Vanilla Nuts has more of a beige cast.
Application, Texture & Wear
This. This is where it all goes wrong. A tricksy beast, this one is. The shadow feels nice and creamy in the pot, but it starts to set so fast that it’s difficult to apply evenly. I started off with a flat synthetic brush for it (same as I do with my other cream shadows) but it was very hard to get an even layer. Using my fingertip and patting the shadow on works much better. Even then, it’s a good thing this is so close to my skin color, because the edges are literally impossible to blend with a brush – I have to sort of feather it out with my finger, if that makes any sense. When used over primer it looks fairly dry and chalky, but lasts all day with no problems. It looks much smoother on unprimed lids, but the one time I tried that it creased so badly that by lunchtime the only part of it left was what’s on my visible lid when my eyes are open. That probably has more to do with my oily lids than the shadow, but the point is it’s difficult for me to wear on its own.
But, I got this with no intention to use it as a standalone eyeshadow color, so how about as a base? Nope. True, it does make most powder shadows show up with a more intense, true-to-pan color, but functionally it makes them a huge pain in the ass to work with. Matte powder shadows will hardly stick to my lids at all when I’m using this as a base – shadows that I normally love for their pigmentation. Every powder shadow I’ve tried over this also magically became nearly impossible to blend unless I used a stiff domed brush.
Long story short, I’m really grasping for ways I can successfully use this. Maybe it would work as a waterline brightener if I use a teeny-tiny brush? Haven’t tried that yet.
Product Weight: .12oz/3.5g
In Short: I was really excited about this and prepared to love it, but it just doesn’t do any of the things I wanted it to. I’m pretty sure it’s getting returned.
Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Eyeshadow ($26) is available at nordstrom.com
ErinJanuary 29, 2015 at 10:51 am
Reminds me alot of MAC’s Painterly paint pot. Looks like a great base!
Erin | Erin and Katherine Talk Beauty
NikkiJanuary 29, 2015 at 10:55 am
MAC Painterly was my other choice, but when I looked at it in person it seemed a little too pinkish for what I wanted. I may end up trying it out anyway though, or NARS Porto Venere.
LexieJanuary 30, 2015 at 1:59 pm
It made me think of MAC paint pots too! Sucks that it wasn’t really workable, though. Have you looked at/tried the Soft Ochre paint pot? It’s more yellow toned than Painterly.
NikkiJanuary 30, 2015 at 2:05 pm
I think my MAC counter must not have had Soft Ochre, because it looks really close to what I wanted! Guess I’m due for another research trip to the mall :-)
DianaJanuary 31, 2015 at 1:07 pm
Interesting. This is a HG of mine. I’ve gone through like three pots! It works so well for me.