First off, I want to apologise for the dismal condition of some of the photos. My camera broke and I had to send it in for repairs, thus resulting in my using my very old phone camera to take the remainder of the pictures, now…
This thing was such a colossal pain in the butt. I had to actually purchase this twice. Why you ask? Ok, lemme tell you. You know that magazine that Ulta sends out? It had this listed as part of a set with the new Duo Brush. Well, when I got mine…there was no brush, so I called Ulta.com and they told me that the couldn’t send a brush out to me if it had been part of a set, but here was a nice $10 gift card for all my troubles…
I said ok thanks, walked right over to my local Ulta, returned it, came home…and purchased it from QVC brush and all for the same price even with shipping. What irritated me was the fact that they didn’t offer to replace the brush even though technically I’d already paid for it being a part of the set and all. That $10 gift card wasn’t going to cover the entire price of the brush which is $26, plus tax, plus shipping. I feel like if I had gone in store they would have just given me the brush, but unfortunately my store didn’t have that or the powders in as yet.
The presentation of the set is beautiful. The powders are a bit larger than I’d expected, lately I’ve been thinking that with a lot of products, mostly based on the price I seem to expect them to be smaller. In any case, the powders are housed is a somewhat chunky looking shiny black compact with a mirror, with the two powders in recessed compartments inside that minimise the chance of cross contamination. There is a matte white powder for setting makeup and keeping oil at bay, and a beige white with swirls of peach in a pearlescent finish for adding luminosity to the complexion. This second powder reminds me of the Hourglass blushes in looks at least.
The pearlescent powder employs the marbling technique which means that no two will look the same. Unfortunately it also means that the amount of peach the you get in each one with also differ. The first one that I’d gotten from Ulta had only a small amount of peach, but the one from QVC had a much higher content which made me glad that I’d decided to purchase from them.
Pictures below of both, the one from QVC is the one pictured with the brush.
The brush that comes as part of the set is the new Dual Finish Contour & Blush Brush. You can purchase it separately if you wish for $26, but only I think from Ulta, from QVC at this time it’s strictly a part of this set. It’s cream and brown bristles are both natural and synthetic. The cream side is the synthetic side, and the bristles though not harsh or scratchy, clearly have less give than the darker, natural haired side. It’s meant to function as both a contouring brush and a blush brush and is about the size of a typical blush brush. However, since the bristles aren’t especially dense, I fail to see how it will function well as a contour brush. Blush, maybe. Contour, eh…not so much
I don’t understand this brush. It confuses me. It leaves me irrationally angry and wanting to hurt things whenever I look at it. I mean it’s pretty and all but…You know that really pretty friend that you have? The one that makes you go wow every time you look at her because she’s truly gorgeous? The same one who’ll open her mouth and shatter that illusion and make you want to kill yourself and her, because nothing that comes out of her mouth makes any damn sense? But you have to smile and act as if it does because she’s your friend and it would hurt her feelings if you told her to just STFU and never speak again? Besides which, you put yourself in the situation so obviously your fault? Yeah, that’s this brush.
While it’s not completely useless for anything other than being pretty like that friend, it’s not great and I don’t envision myself using it very often. It just doesn’t do a good enough job of picking up or depositing the powders. I had to use one of my larger BH brushes to get the job done.
As for the powders…Bare Minerals says that they went out of their way to create them in such a way that they would compliment all skin tones, especially taking into consideration the way that white powders can create harsh ashy tones on dark skin. In fact, for their QVC presentation they specifically used a model about my complexion to showcase that.
While I’m eternally grateful that the brand took complexions like mine into such serious consideration, and while they absolutely nailed it…I found the powders to perform in a rather lacklustre manner. They’re a bit hard, making it difficult to pick up much with a brush. In fact, I found myself actually depositing foundation onto the glow powder from having to go back over so often to get enough to make any sort of difference to my skin. I have no swatches because I could not swatch enough product with my fingers to get a good shot. It’s almost as if the top layer has set, and I would have to scrape off the top to make it perform well. I still may.
The good news is that when I did manage to get enough to use, the matte portion did not make my face ashy, it just created a uniform finish. The glow side similarly imparted a very lovely, low-key, natural looking luminosity.
I’m torn on this powder. When I can get product it performs well. I feel the key here may be in removing that top, hard layer, but then I’ll be pissed because I’ll have ruined it aesthetically. I dunno, I have a feeling that these would have been better as loose powder options. Should you get this? I’m not sure, I may have gotten a one off baddie from QVC, but since I didn’t swatch the one from Ulta because I knew I’d be returning it, I can’t really come to that conclusion. This is one of those products that I don’t have a definitive answer for you about. This one you’re gonna have go alone.
Would I re-purchase this? Likely no, I know of that perform better. I will say though for the price point of $32 (compact only), it’s a steal. You two decently sized powders for the price of one, and maybe you’ll get a better one that I did.