January 04, 2014

theBalm Mary-Lou Manizer & Betty-Lou Manizer | Review + Swatches

I got this limited-edition duo at Kohl's for $29, which is awesome because this has a value of $48. After swatching Mary-Lou Manizer in-store, I was intrigued by its goldy-champagne color. These are very nice quality, but due to my personal preference, they didn't live up to the hype. Read on for a detailed review or skip to the bottom for a list of pros and cons.

Packaging: The packaging is pretty nice. Its a sturdy compact, that's appropriately sized, that comes with a mirror. Each compact comes with 8.5g of product. The closure is secure. The material is a silver plastic that has a slight sheen, so dirty fingerprints aren't a problem. The front labels are undeniably fun.

swatches: natural light - flash

Shades: Mary-Lou Manizer is a warm champagne; it's what you would describe as "candlelit." It is the ideal color for me for highlighting. Betty-Lou Manizer is a subdued orange, so as a bronzer, it's just too orange for my skin as a bronzer.

Finishes: Both have fine shimmer, but it's definitely noticeable (especially in artificial light), with a pearly base. Because of this finish, Mary-Lou is a bit too obvious as a highlighter for me. I don't like the shimmer. Same goes for Betty-Lou. A bronzer with this shimmery and pearly of a finish is not ideal. 

Texture/pigmentation: These are magnificently textured. Nice and buttery, but not overly so since they are tightly packed. Fallout and powder flying everywhere is not an issue. The pigmentation is equally great. Just a slight dab with my finger and there is full opacity. Since these are so pigmented, you have to be quite careful and use a light-hand when using these as face products. This is kind of downside because it's so easy to go overboard. Luckily, these are easy to blend. 

Application/uses: Don't get me wrong, I don't hate these products. But they didn't perform well for me as their primary purpose. Mary-Lou is too shimmery and dramatic for me as a highlighter, but it's awesome as an eyeshadow, especially as an inner-corner highlight! I love using these types of shades as eyeshadows. Sheered out, it layers well over other colors to give them a pretty sheen. Betty-Lou is too orange and shimmery as a bronzer, but layered over my blush, it gives my cheeks a warm, pretty sheen. This also works well as an eyeshadow. It's the classic shimmery copper. Even though these didn't work for me as a cheek highlighter or bronzer, they're not completely useless. 

Ingredients: Mary-Lou Manizer: mica, isoeicosane, polyethylene, boron nitride, polyisobutene, PTFE, silica, synthetic wax, dimethicone, titanium dioxide (CI 77891), iron oxides (CI 77491). 

Betty-Lou Manizer: mica, isoeicosane, polyethylene, boron nitride, polyisobutene, PTFE, silica, synthetic wax, dimethicone, iron oxides (CI 77491), titanium dioxide (CI 77891), carmine (CI 75470).

  • Pigmented
  • Buttery texture
  • No fallout
  • Tightly packed
  •  Practical yet aesthetically pleasing packaging
  • Multi-purpose

  • Finishes aren't ideal for highlighting and bronzing (more of a personal preference thing)

The duo is available at Kohl's (it's limited edition though). The singles are also available at Kohl's along with theBalm's website [MLM, BLM], Nordstrom, Zappos, and a variety of other online retailers.

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