Archive for the 'pigments' Category

Quick UNII Palette MAC Pressed Pigment Rundown

February 7, 2010

Several of my lovely readers had requested a rundown of the MAC shades contained in my Snow UNII palette so here it is! In the top row we have (from left to right) Dazzlelight (shimmery champagne nude that makes a fantastic brow highlighter), Gilded Green Pigment, Viz-a-Violet Pigment and Fuchsia Pigment, in the middle row we have Naked Pigment, Golden Olive Pigment and Violet Pigment, and in the bottom row we’ve got Apricot Pink Pigment, Mutiny Pigment, and (my personal favorite) Pink Pearl Pigment. The blush is the only non-MAC thing in the palette, and it’s a universally flattering pale pink shade called Sutton Place from DEX.

As you can see, I went through a rather obsessive little pigment-pressing stage some time ago, and if you haven’t checked out my pigment-pressing tutorial, please do! It’s from waaaay back in the early stages of ABS (in the crappy-camera days), but it’s relatively easy to follow and a ton of fun. As for the palette, well you now all know that it’s from UNII Cosmetics and I’ve babbled about all its wonderfulness here.

Pressing Some MAC Overrich and Other Piggies & Golden Olive vs. Antique Gold Pigments Compared

September 13, 2008
Top Row: MAC Apricot Pink Pigment, Aromaleigh Blush in Breathless
Middle Row:
MAC Pigments in Viz-a-Violet and Gilded Green
Bottom Row: MAC Overrich Pigments in Blonde’s Gold, Antique Gold, and Antique Green

If you own even one MAC pigment and haven’t checked out my illustrated pigmented-pressing tutorial, what are you waiting for? Click on over now! It’s fun and easy and a great way to waste a few hours of your life =D.

As you can see on the swatches of denim I used to press my pigments, the Gilded Green and the Aromaleigh blush bled quite a lot and released a lot of color, but no worries the pressed pigments are still gorgeous! Well I should qualify that to say that all of the MAC pigments are still gorgeous. My attempt to press the Aromaleigh mineral blush resulted in a rock hard hunk of pink that I had to toss, since no amount of scraping at the surface gave me any color!

Swatches (L to R): Antique Green, Blonde’s Gold, Antique Green, Apricot Pink

And for all the green lovers (*ahem* Anastasia) a comparison of some of the greenish Overrich pigments and Golden Olive pigments:

Swatches (L to R): Antique Gold, Golden Olive, Antique Green

…and for a comparison of a few other green MAC pigments, click here!

And since I’m on a green kick, I thought I’d take us back in time to look at some FOTD’s I’ve done using MAC Golden Olive pigment (click on the photos to be taken back to the original posts for details):





MAC Blonde’s Gold Overrich Pigment Versus Ricepaper Eyeshadow

September 3, 2008
Top: MAC Blonde’s Gold Pigment
Bottom: MAC Ricepaper Eyeshadow

Closeup of Ricepaper

Swatches (L to R): Blonde’s Gold, Ricepaper

One of my readers (Aleksis) asked me how MAC’s new Overrich pigment in Blonde’s Gold compared to their Ricepaper eyeshadow, but having never tried Ricepaper I couldn’t give her a proper response–so Nicole came to our rescue!

Thanks so much for the great photos!

MAC Blonde’s Gold and Jardin Aires Pigments Compared, Plus a Peek Into Nicole’s Train Case

August 29, 2008
Nicole’s Train Case

If only I were this organized! Check out all the lovely mascara on the right (I spy YSL Everlong, Exceptionnel de Chanel, Dior Iconic and Givenchy Phenomen’Eyes), plus all the yummy Chanel glossimers!

Blonde’s Gold (left) versus Jardin Aires (right)

According to Nicole, Blonde’s Gold is a deeper shade than Jardin Aires is, and also has a better texture.


MAC Overrich Pigment in Vintage Gold

MAC Overrich Pigment in Blonde’s Gold


Reader Experiments in Pigment Pressing!

August 22, 2008

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but I LOVE getting reader comments and e-mails! It makes me feel so loved–especially when they send photos of pressed pigments created using my tutorial!


A Rainbow of Pigments

Nicole sent me this photo MONTHS ago but I’ve been waiting for the perfect opportunity to post it, and today’s the day! Her first attempt at pigment-pressing–isn’t it pretty?

The following photos are from the lovely Decorative Diva, who also used my tutorial! She was able to successfully press both MAC pigments and mineral products, so hop on over to her blog to check it out!

She used an emptied-out Wet n Wild palette for her mineral blushes–how clever!

And in case you’ve forgotten, my pigment pressing results!

Related Posts:
If you haven’t done so already, be sure to check out my MAC pigment pressing tutorial here. It’s fun, easy, and will bring out your inner child!

I’ve had some great reader-contributed photos in the past as well–check them all out here.

MAC Pigments in Viz-a-Violet and Gilded Green (from Colour Forms): Review, Swatches, and some Comparisons

August 5, 2008
MAC Colour Forms (Nordstorm exclusive) pigment in Gilded Green, MAC Pigment in Viz-a-Violet

They’re a little clumpy/chunky in texture.

As a post-bar treat, SO took me to Sephora, Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, and the Cosmetics Company Outlet at Woodbury commons this past weekend ❤ While at Nordstrom I happened to be checking out their exclusive Colour Forms collection for only the millionth time when I decided to swatch Gilded Green just for the heck of it. I have MAC Pigments in Golden Olive and Pastorale so hadn't really given Gilded Green much attention, but after swatching it I had to have it! I'd say it's in-between Pastorale and Golden Olive–it's a mid-toned candy apple green with gold pearl that's great for a bright pop of color.

Left to Right: Pastorale (pale mint green), Gilded Green, Golden Olive
Click here for additional swatches of Pastorale and Golden Olive.

Same swatches, different lighting!

I was ridiculously excited to check out the MAC selection at the Cosmetics Company Outlet, and while they had tons of great stuff, they had very little in the way of pigment selection. Luckily I happened upon Viz-a-Violet, or I would’ve had a very sad pigment day! I wasn’t sure if I needed this since I had Violet pigment at home, but SO convinced me that it was different from any of the purples that I had, so of course I let him talk me into buying it!

Left to Right: Viz-a-Violet pigment, Violet pigment
Click here for a better swatch of Violet pigment–I don’t know what’s wrong with this one!

Viz-a-Violet is a mid-tone violet with blue and red pearl (which I don’t see!), whereas Violet is a bright violet-purple. Meaning Viz-a-Violet has a much more muted lavendery hue, while Violet is a much brighter purple shade. I think Viz-a-Violet is what you’d end up with if you mixed MAC pigments in Violet and Vanilla together!

Either way, I absolutely love Viz-a-Violet. I wore it out while shopping at the Nordstrom MAC counter, and all the MA’s were asking me what shade I was wearing on my eyes, and where I had gotten it! They had no idea it was even MAC!

All in all I had a great shopping weekend!

How was your weekend? Pick up lots of cosmetic goodies? Share with me!

Related Posts:
See me weekend haul (during which I got these pigments and a few other goodies) here.

See a quick FOTD using MAC Golden Olive pigment here.

Learn about new ways to use your MAC pigments here.

Check out my illustrated MAC pigment-pressing tutorial here-I promise it’s easy and fun!

See more swatches of MAC pigments here and here.

ABS’s Giveaway for the Month of June!

June 6, 2008

Now you don’t really think I’d just give away a pro compact with nothing in it do you? Have a little faith!!! 😉


Since I’ve been on such a pigment kick this month (as evidenced by my pigment pressing tutorial found here as well as the various other pigment uses I’ve experimented with), I thought that my readers deserved to test out the pressed pigments I’ve been babbling on and on about and so I decided to press a few especially for you!

Remember the little mystery purchase I mentioned in this post? Well it turns out that a little MAC pigment in Naked followed me home that day, wanting to be pressed into an eyeshadow/highlighter for one of you lovely ladies!


So go on-enter to win June’s giveaway of a MAC Pro Compact, and pressed pigments in Pink Pearl and Naked (I’ve left the other two slots empty for you to fill with coordinating shadows of your choice). Come on, you know you want to!! Scroll down for rules of entry.

Swatches: MAC Naked pigment on the left, Pink Pearl pigment on the right

The rules are simple this time around:
1) Enter by June 22nd and leave me your contact info (and promise to tell me what you think of your prize once you receive it) in your comment!
2) Tell me your favorite brand and shade of eyeshadow. I’ll be selecting the winner at random!
(Yes I know I changed the rules-the prior challenge seemed to be a bit too challenging. I’m saving it for a special giveaway!)

See my illustrated MAC pigment-pressing tutorial here.

Find some new uses for MAC pigments here.

Read about my first pigment pressing experiment here and learn about what you can and can’t press.

Exploring the Full Potential of MAC Pigments

June 3, 2008

Although I had a lot of fun pressing my MAC pigments into eyeshadows, I know haven’t been taking full advantage of their versatility, and so in the next few weeks I’m determined to find as many different uses for them as I can.

Use #1: Gorgeous Pressed Eyeshadows and Blushes!!

Use #2: Luminizer/Hydrator


See the gorgeous swirls of pigment?

I transferred some of my MAC Fix+ into a small spray bottle, spooned in some Vanilla pigment, shook and voila, glow in a bottle! I’m loving this since the MAC Fix+ was just sitting on my vanity, wasting away from neglect. Now I have a refreshing midday spritzer that also gives my skin a subtle dewy glow. I’ve also mixed some pigment into my Shu Uemura Depsea spray (which is MUCH better than MAC Fix+)!

Use #3: Gloss Revamper


My Dior Ultra-Gloss Reflect in Cotton petal (247) hadn’t been getting much use because the color, while pretty, was just too sheer on me. I finally decided to take matters into my own hands today by adding some Pink Pearl pigment to it.

Before (pretty milky pink):


That’s all I had time for today-hopefully more to come at some point in the future! 🙂

Tell me about the different ways you use your pigments!

See my illustrated pigment-pressing tutorial here.

Read about my first little pigment-pressing experiment and see the results here.

MAC Fuchsia, Golden Olive, and Violet EOTD

June 1, 2008

Another FOTD using MAC pigments! I decided to start off with pink since I’ve been feeling a bit pink-deprived these past few weeks, and improvised from there 🙂


I used MAC Fuchsia pigment on the inner third of my eyes, Golden Olive on the center, and Violet on the outer third. Don’t mind the little mascara smudgie on one of my eyes-had a little mishap!! 🙂

An Illustrated MAC Pigment-Pressing Tutorial :)

May 30, 2008
Want to learn how to turn you messy pigments into gorgeous pressed shadows (that you can’t spill-you know you’re afraid you will!)?
Then read on! 🙂

List of Supplies:

  • Phase 1
    • Rubbing alcohol
    • Small dropper (old bottle of eye drops, etc)
    • Empty eyeshadow pans (I get mine here)
    • Small spatula or other mixing implement and a little spoon
    • Small mixing bowls (optional)-I used the bottom half of those little plastic containers you get out of the 25 cent machines 🙂
    • Pigments (DUH!) 3/4 teaspoon per eyeshadow (aka 3 samples if that’s what you’re using)
    • Paper towels
  • Phase 2
    • Small squares of fabric (preferably something sturdy like denim)
    • Lots of quarters (and nickels and dimes!)
    • Some very heavy books (you know you’ll never read them anyway!)
    • Slim magnets with adhesive on the back
    • Labels (optional)
Phase 1

1. Lay down a paper towel and get together all your supplies for Phase 1 of pressing (Pigment pressing can get a little messy!)

2. Fill up your dropper bottle with rubbing alcohol. I used 70% but different concentrations are fine. Just keep in mind that the lower your percentage, the longer it will take for the alcohol to evaporate! And yes mine is citrus scented, meaning my eyeshadows have a faint citrus scent 🙂


3. Place a few drops of rubbing alcohol in the bottom of your mixing bowl (or directly into the empty pan if you choose not to mix in a separate bowl).

4. Spoon in a few little spoonfuls of pigment.

5. Mix mix mix!!!

6. Keep adding more pigment and more alcohol until you’ve used about 3/4 teaspoon of pigment (approximately 3 samples for those of you working from sample containers) and your mixture has reached a cake icing-like consistency. You can go for a runnier mixture, but that again means your eyeshadow will take longer to dry and set. Also, I’ve found that while you’d think that having a runnier mixture would be easier to transfer to your eyeshadow pan, it’s actually more difficult. After a few tries you’ll figure out what consistency works best for you!


7. If you were working out of a separate bowl like me, place 1-2 drops of rubbing alcohol in the bottom of your eyeshadow pan now (it helps your pigment mixture to adhere to the pan).

8. Scoop your pigment mixture into the pan. Make sure you get it all in there!! At this point it should look like you have a big pile of poop in your pan 🙂

9. Repeatedly pick up and drop your eyeshadow pan (from a distance of about an inch or two in the air) onto your tabletop to create a smooth even surface (if you can’t get it perfectly even no worries-pressing takes care of that!). Also do this every once in awhile while your eyeshadows are drying to pack them down.


10. Set your mixtures aside to dry (anywhere from 30 minutes to overnight)! I like to place them in a warm/sunny spot so that the rubbing alcohol evaporates more quickly. You’ll know your eyeshadow is ready for phase two when you lightly tap touch the surface of your shadow and nothing comes away on your finger. Also, check out how Bell-Bottom Blue, Tan, and Golden Olive have sunken into their pans, whereas Fuchsia and Violet which I mixed up last (and which aren’t ready for pressing) are still somewhat overflowing. This is another indication of whether your pigment is or isn’t ready for Phase 2. Don’t forget to keep packing down your shadows whenever you remember to!

Phase 2
Got all your supplies for Phase 2 together? Then let’s get to pressing!!
Make sure you have at least as many quarters as you do eyeshadows, and a good amount of change on top of that!


1) Top each eyeshadow with a square of fabric (I cut up an ancient pair of denim shorts), and then center a quarter on top. You should be able to feel the quarter get caught within the confines of the eyeshadow pan-makes sure it’s actually in there!

2) Repeat however many times you need to 🙂 I like to use two quarters plus a dime for every eyeshadow, since the pressing causes the pigment mixture to compress a good amount. If you only use one quarter, it’ll sink and you might not get as good a press as you’d like.

3) Stack a few heavy books on top of your eyeshadows (I used my casebooks-those things are massive!) and press down HARD! You can also use a small flower press to speed up the process. Now walk away and let those babies compress (I give them at least an hour or two. And if you’re patient, overnight is great!). NO PEEKING!!!


4) You couldn’t resist peeking could you? I never can! If the bottom quarter has sunken so that its top is about flush with the top of the eyeshadow pan, your new shadow is probably ready. Your fabric swatch should have sunken into the pan like in the photo.

5) Remove the quarters and fabric and marvel at how gorgeous your new eyeshadows are. Doesn’t the denim leave a beautiful texture?!

6) Now if you’re going to pop them into your palette, stick a magnet on the back (I have magnetic scotch tape so just use that), and pop a label with the name of the pigment on top of that.

And voila, you’re all done!! A rainbow of pigments, conveniently pressed and ready to be used!

Top row: Tan, Rose, L’Oreal HIP pigment in Valiant
Middle row: Quick Frost, Fuchsia, Golden Olive, Bell-Bottom Blue
Bottom row: Vanilla, Pink Pearl, Violet, Pastorale, Mutiny

I’d love to hear what you think of my tutorial in the comments! Any suggestions for improvement would be most appreciated 🙂

See swatches of Mutiny, Bell-Bottom Blue, Violet, Fuchsia, and Vanilla pigments here.

Read about my little pigment-pressing experiment here, and learn that yes you can press L’Oreal HIP pigments!

See swatches of Pink Pearl, Rose, Quick Frost, Pastorale, Golden Olive, and Tan here.