Why I Didn’t Like the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Gift Set

The Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Gift Set can be found at Shoppers Drugmart for $24.99. It includes 1 Shimmer Strips eye shadow palette, 2 eye liner pencils and 1 double sided Mascara (so basically a 2 in 1 mascara). I mentioned this set in my post about the Gift Sets that I purchased for myself this year and thought that it’d be a good idea to explain why I didn’t care for this set in a little more detail. My 2014 Holiday Sets post can be found here.

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You may have seen this pic before! I’m expanding a little on my previous post to explain why I didn’t care for this set.

Physicians Formula is a drugstore brand that is all about being hypoallergenic and “good for you” makeup. They have a wide range of products that tend to be a slightly higher price point than other drugstore brands. They sell mineral make up, blushes, eye shadows, highlighters, mascara, pretty much the usual. Beauty bloggers tend to love their blushes and the Shimmer Strips eye shadows. I personally have always been put off of Physicians Formula because they use gimmicky packaging, glitter over sprays and are quite expensive for what they are. I was willing to overlook some of the bad if I could find a less expensive version of the products that I really like from Pur Minerals, Bare Minerals etc. If that’s why you’re interested in Physicians Formula, let me tell you right now. Don’t bother. After hearing so much about the Shimmer Strips eye shadows I became curious but never bought them because they are about $17.99 which in my opinion is a lot of money for a drugstore eye shadow palette. Maybelline’s Nude palette is $13.99 and is frequently on sale for $9.99. Anyway, I saw this gift set for $24.99 and thought that it’d be a really great way to try Physicians Formula.

The beloved Shimmer Strips… are lack luster in my opinion. I’ve said it before, if you own a few Wet’n’Wild trios you can achieve similar looks. The shadow did last all day when paired with a primer and it was blendable and buildable. I would have liked it a lot more if it weren’t for their packaging. I felt that each eye shadow was quite tiny and that made it a little awkward trying to pick up product with my brush. This is especially annoying since we’re not talking Urban Decay quality shadows here where you’d simply dab your brush in ever so slightly to pick up product. You do need to actually take a good swipe to get some product so you inevitably pick other shades with it. That being said, if you have a travel eye shadow brush set or this flaw doesn’t bother you, you might actually be able to get better use of the Shimmer Strips than I will. I intend on hanging on to them for travel.

Swatches of the Shimmer Strips. The pigment isn't bad but FYI they bottom row of colours are all quite shear.
Swatches of the Shimmer Strips.
See how when I dip in a brush it picks up multiple colours? If you're careful you can a
See how when I dip in a brush it picks up multiple colours? If you’re careful you can avoid doing that but at 6am when I’m getting ready for work, I’m not that careful.

The Mascara was nice and buildable. It lasted all day. It was black. I didn’t get crazy lashes or anything but it was nice and worked. I’d be interested in taking a risk on trying some of their other mascaras after trying this. I don’t have much constructive to say about it so moving on…

Brown side of the mascara.
Brown side of the mascara.
Black side of the mascara.


The eye liners were not good. I don’t think I’d actually recommend them to anyone in any circumstance. They smudge and wore off after a full days wear. Another challenge is that they are not sold individually. You have to buy 3 colours at once. The 3 pack is about $15. So I don’t recommend these at all because they didn’t last and you can buy decent drug store eye liner for a lot less and in individuals formats.

The lighter shade on my hand is actually the black. The darker swatch is actually the brown. Seems backwards doesn’t it?
A gentle wipe with my finger completely smudged away the liner.
A gentle wipe with my finger completely smudged away the liner.

Over all, this gift set was a bit of a miss for me personally. I don’t think that Physicians Formula is a brand that I can get behind. I tried this gift set and a few months back I tried their loose powder kit. Neither of them worked out for me. If you’re shopping for a person just getting in to makeup, this might actually be a suitable and affordable gift set to give them but if you want to try the Shimmer Strips shadows and think (like I did) that a gift set such as this is a good value and a great excuse to try them – don’t bother. Physicians Formula frequently goes on sale for 40% at Shoppers Drugmart and Well.ca. Just wait for a sale and try the Shimmer Strips. I hope you don’t mind the tiny packaging.



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