Thursday, 24 November 2011

Comparing Cream Eyeshadows

L-R: Benefit Creaseless Cream in Birthday Suit, Bobbi Brown Longwear Cream Shadow in Ash & 17 Wild Metallics Eyes in Wild Nude

I find that powder eyeshadows often irritate my eyes and make them feel puffy particularly the glittery shades, so before I found cream eyeshadows I didn't really wear any eye makeup other than mascara and hadn't for years. I had always assumed that there would be a range available somewhere that wouldn't irritate my eyes but didn't fancy wasting a lot of money trying out different brands. 
I've owned Benefit's Birthday Suit for about three years now along with the shades Skinny JeansRSVP and Flatter Me. I was surprised when I first discovered them, I'd finally found a suitable product which was not irritating to my sensitive eyes. I fell in love with the Creaseless Creams but there isn't a huge range of colours to choose from and they are mostly shimmery finishes. Although I don't dislike the shimmer I am more of a fan of matte finishes so next I set out to find out what matte cream eyeshadows were available.
About a year later this led me to the Bobbi Brown counter where to my excitement I found a huge range of cream eyeshadows with both matte and shimmery shades on offer. I picked up the shade Ash to use as an eyeliner as it was the darkest matte brown. They do also have a range of Long-Wear eyeliners but I thought the eyeshadow would be more versatile. Most of the time I use Ash as my eyeliner then go over the top of it with a dark brown powder shadow (Revlon Matte 009 Sable).
More recently when I heard about the 17 Wild Metallics range, and read lots of blog posts on them, I decided I had to try them out too! Since I found the Benefit shadows I've been hoping to see a cheaper alternative appear on the high street. I almost opted for the shade Bronze from the 17 range but decided I'd go back for that one later if I liked the nude shade as they would look lovely together.

Packaging: The Bobbi Brown and Benefit shadows are packaged similarly with glass pots presented in small cardboard boxes where as the 17 shadow comes in a plastic pot. There is a slight difference in the amount of product, the Benefit shadow is 4.5g and the Bobbi Brown a little less at 3.5g. However the 17 shadow doesn't seem to state the amount of product anywhere on the packaging.

Product Appearance: The colours of the 17 and Benefit shades are quite similar as both are nude/neutral shades although the Benefit one is lighter and more gold toned. Obviously the Bobbi Brown eyeshadow differs in that it is a matte finish and a darker shade.
The scent of the 17 eyeshadow is quite synthetic which I really don't like but it's not particularly important with an eye product. The Benefit eyeshadows have a lovely scent but it has definitely faded over time. On the other hand the Bobbi Brown shadow doesn't have a particularly strong scent and just smells similar to a cream eyeliner.

Application & Wear : The 17 eyeshadow has a much thinner, more mousse-like consistency and is therefore easier to blend but slower to dry. I definitely wouldn't rely on it for everyday wear because I found it transferred really easily. The Benefit and Bobbi Brown eyeshadows are thicker and have better staying power and will last all day without creasing. I've also used the Benefit eyeshadow as a primer or base before which I'm not sure would be possible with the 17 eyeshadow as it could get a bit messy. I'd love to add a lighter, neutral shade from Bobbi Brown to my collection as a matte base or subtle everyday colour.

Price: There is obviously a huge difference in the prices so it's really great to see brands like 17 and ELF introducing more affordable versions into their collections. The Benefit Creaseless Creams currently retail at £14, the Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadows £17 and the 17 Wild Metallics at only £3.99. Boots frequently run 3 for 2 deals on their make up ranges too which would be the perfect time to try out the new cream eyeshadows!

Personally I think if you are looking for something to wear everyday then the staying power of the Benefit & Bobbi Brown eyeshadows justifies the price tag but if you are new to cream eyeshadows then for the price the 17 one is definitely worth a try. I've only ever really used my Bobbi Brown shadow as a liner so I can't really comment on how it works as an all over colour. As a liner it works perfectly on it's own or as a base for a powder shadow and it stays put for most of the day.
More shades of the Bobbi Brown shadows are definitely on my wish list, I've got my eye on Sand Dollar, Brown MetalBone, Shore & Slate in particular. I'd also really like to try the Mac Paint Pots (£13.50), the more affordable version from ELF (£3.50) and of course Illusoire from the Chanel Illusion D'Ombre range (£22.50).

What are your favourite cream eyeshadows?
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