Monday, August 9, 2010

Comparison: BYS & Sleek, pt 1

I was very naughty and purchased the Sleek Curious palette from eBay during my no-buy (c'mon, limited edition!) I'd been hearing such rave reviews about these shadows and was curious (pun totally not intended! Seriously, I groaned when I realised what I'd typed) to see what all the fuss was about. There are eleventy-million reviews and swatch posts of the Sleek palettes, so I decided there was no point doing one of my own, since I'd just be repeating everything. In a nutshell: everything you've heard about these palettes is true. Sturdy, slimline packaging, great mirror, superior pigmentation, mouth-watering blendability, fantastic variety.The day I got Curious in the mail, I was so impressed by it, that I ordered Safari. I'm seriously considering the Storm palette, since they're so cheap and I really don't have neutrals in my arsenal.

Embrassingly enough, the only pressed shadows I've used before are by a cheap and crappy little Australian 'drugstore' brand called BYS. Now, BYS do have some nicely pigmented eyeshadows, but whenever I used my palette it always smelled sickly sweet and chemical-y, so after a little while (and a lot of mineral eyeshadow purchasing) I threw it out. For the purposes of a comparison, I ducked into Gloss (a budget makeup/accessories shop) and bought this palette:

'Metallic eyeshadow'. What a misnomer. I put this on in a rush to go out to dinner. Applying it over TFSI, I was like, "Huh? These are looking distinctly... matte. And sheer. And ew. Crap, I wish I'd brought my make-up removing wipes!" On the left here is the blue from BYS Metallic palette, over Pixie Epoxy, with the dark blue from the Sleek Curious Palette on the right (also over PE):
A tiny hint of glitter. Visible because I was using a macro setting. In person, I had to put my eye right up to my hand to see it. If your eye is any more than 5cm away, it looks completely matte.

Both blues, one swipe over TFSI (I bought a mini tube off eBay, it's seriously cute and tiny):

Ok, here's the really annoying part. Here is the actual eyeshadow in the Curious palete:

The eyeshadow from the Metallic palette:

Looks matte, right? Here's an untouched shadow from the Metallic palette.

All shiny! Now, here's the same shadow, and I have run my brush over the left-hand side of the eyeshadow.

WTF. Apparently these 'metallic' shadows have a nice shiny coating on them, so that they look metallic.. until you go to use them. Here is a close-up of the blue shadow over TFSI:

So not only is it matte, it's also stupidly sheer and was really hard to work with. BLEH.

I bought this metallic palette because I remembered the other BYS shadows being fairly satiny and straightfoward, and I wanted something shimmery, since most of the Sleek shadows in my palettes are shimmery. Fail and a half. I am going to pick up one of the regular BYS palettes this week, since I remember the quality of those being far better. In fairness, this palette was $3.95, which is dirt cheap. Sleek palettes are £5, which equates to about $8.70 Australian. I bought mine off eBay so I paid a fair bit more than that!

The difference in texture and pigmentation of these shadows really surprised me, because the ingredients are actually kind of similar. Both contain Mica, Talc, Magnesium, Stearate, Ethylhexl, Palmitate, and Propylparaben. Both are made in China, haha. Sleek does contain Kaolin, which surprised me, since I usually associate that with shadows being dull and foiling/going over PE funny. It does somewhat explain the much-lauded smoothness of the shadows, though.

Part 2 will discuss packaging, since it's late and I'm a bit tired! Hopefully the regular BYS palette won't be quite as disappointing, I'm chucking this so-called 'metallic' one in the bin.


  1. I swear BYS probably thought their customers were morons when they created that palette -_- I havent noticed a sweet smell with my Neon palette when I use it, then again I've not mushed it up against my nose either, haha.

  2. Yeah, pretty much! I may have been imagining the smell :P I'll have to wait and see. I am so glad I didn't pay any more for that palette, I'd be spitting chips!


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