I haven’t played with Essence in a little while now. They’re a UK brand that you can find at Shoppers Drugmart. Most of their products are less than $5 each! I love trying them out because they have a few gems in their collection and well… $5! You can’t beat that! This time I picked up the Lash Princess Mascara for $4.99 and the Smokey Eyes Set for $3.99. I got the shade 02 Smokey Day. I tested them out for my usual work day and here’s what I got!
The Smokey Eyes palette is a trio with the taupe shade being the centre piece. It includes; a lovely shimmery taupe, a satin-matte dark brown for contrast and a cream shimmery highlight. Basically 3 absolute staples in anyone’s collection! The packaging is quite sturdy and a sponge tip applicator is included. I didn’t use the sponge applicator. It’s very reminiscent of standard drugstore eyeshadows from the usual culprits such as Maybelline.
They have a soft texture and respectable pigmentation. I wish the dark brown was a little more intense though. It will do the job for contrasting in the crease but it’s really not dark enough to use as a liner or anything. Well, not without a fight at least!
As for the look – it came out nice. There’s only so much you can do with this type of trio of course 🙂 I found it pretty easy to work with. They blended well and it was really obvious how Essence intended for you to use each shade. It’s a simple, no brainer look. I’m not knocking the simplicity of it. Everyone needs this kind of trio. I found that the eyeshadow lasted all day (as you can see below). The only complaint I can make was that it faded a little bit by the end of the day. (FYI – I always use an eyeshadow primer as well, lately it’s an Urban Decay one.)
In the pics above I’m also wearing the Essence Lash Princess mascara.
I’m a little fussy on my mascara. It can make or break your whole look! I have watery eyes that get irritated easily. This means I’m constantly wiping them and scratching them. It causes all kinds of issues for me with mascara and concealer! When I first applied this mascara I was a little disappointed in how big I could build my lashes. I expected more based on the name of the product. Still, it was a nice mascara with little clumps. I’d be ok with using it for work but not as a night look. I found myself wiping away some smudging through out the day but by the end of the day mascara was still present. The wand had an interesting shape where it twists around (depicted below). I found it easy to master the application with the odd shaped wand but I’m not sure what kind of value that really adds to the product.
Overall – for $4.99 I think the mascara is descent but there’s a lot of great drugstore mascara that frequently goes on sale for a similar price. TheEssence Lash Princess mascara is good but there’s nothing to distinguish it from other great brands like Maybelline’s line of mascaras. Basically I could take it or leave it.
As for the Smokey Eyes Set, well I’d place it in the same category as Wet’n’Wild’s Walking on Eggshells. The price is right – $3.99. The product is good. It’s a really great staple to have in your collection. In fact, you might already have something similar! I actually do like it and think that it can serve a purpose in many peoples collections. For the price point and form factor it’d be a great little travel buddy. It could have a nice home in someone’s makeup basket for getting ready quick. Perhaps even in someone’s makeup stash at work? I’d also suggest it for someone who is looking to get in to makeup, a teen etc.