ColourPop released its Spring 2019 collection over two months ago, which is about two years in ColourPop time, and I’ve lost count of the number of new collections and product ranges and eyeshadow palettes that the brand has debuted since then. However, the spring collection is still available (and is on sale as I type this), so I hope my review helps at least a couple of people!
Fall is my favorite season for makeup, but I seem to patronize ColourPop in the spring more than in any other season. I suppose it makes sense: I wear neutral and “fall/winter” colors year-round, but I don’t wear “spring/summer” colors except in the spring and summer, so I’m inclined to buy my coral lipstick and baby-blue eyeshadow from cheaper brands. (I put “fall/winter” and “spring/summer” in quotes because I know that not everyone is as neurotic about seasonal colors as I am.) But ColourPop also seems to come out with its best color collections in the spring. This year, I ordered six products, four from the permanent lineup (well, as “permanent” as ColourPop products get) and two from the Spring 2019 Sweet Talk collection. Clockwise from top left: Super Shock Shadow in Truth, Crème Lux Lipstick in 7 Springs, Pressed Powder Shadows in Howlin’ and Bassline, Super Shock Cheek in Aphrodisiac, and Jelly Much Eyeshadow in Photosynth Sis (groan).
Today we’ll be looking at the two products from the Spring 2019 Sweet Talk collection: Photosynth Sis, a metallic chartreuse, and 7 Springs, a dusty orange with a strong yellow base.
The packaging of the collection has a distinctive aesthetic that I’m not sure how to describe. Vintage Hollywood + ’80s teen-girl scrapbook + ransom note? It’s not quite to my taste, but as always, I appreciate the effort that ColourPop puts into its packaging for LE collections.
7 Springs (named after a ski resort in Pennsylvania, for some reason) was probably the least popular of the six Lux Lipstick shades in the spring collection. I had a hard time finding unfiltered swatches online, and every swatch looked different. (ColourPop’s lazy description, “warm orange,” certainly didn’t help. Is there such a thing as cool orange?) As my regular readers well know, orange is the riskiest lipstick color for me to order sight unseen, though I have decent luck with muted orangey shades like Marc Jacobs Rei of Light. 7 Springs looked muted and dusty in some photos, but almost neon in others. I knew ordering it was a risk, but I figured that if it was too bright, I could tone it down with a brown lip liner or lipstick.
When I finally saw 7 Springs in person, I understood why it looked so different in every photo: because its appearance changes dramatically based on lighting, and because the iPhone camera seems to make it look brighter than it is. 7 Springs is really a bitch to photograph, but I’ve done my best.
Here it is in indirect natural light, indoors:
In direct sunlight, outdoors:
In artificial light, indoors:
7 Springs is a very unusual orange lipstick. The phrase that comes to mind when I look at 7 Springs is “pumpkin orange.” Not pumpkin spice (which I think of as redder, browner, and darker, like Rei of Light), but the sunny gourd itself. Most orange lipsticks on the market are bright and artificial-looking, like gummy candy or popsicles, but there’s something very natural about 7 Springs. It doesn’t have a white base, and though it’s definitely not a rusty orange, it contains a bit of brown. 7 Springs is light and bright enough to suit spring and summer looks, but soft enough for fall ones. (And if you’re less obsessive about seasonal colors than I am, you can wear it year-round and ignore my chromatic hang-ups.)
Out of curiosity, I swatched 7 Springs alongside all my vaguely orange-adjacent lipsticks. As you can see, it’s the only true orange in my collection; the others lean much redder or browner. I was afraid that 7 Springs might be too close to MAC Smoked Almond, but they’re completely different: Smoked Almond is a dirty peachy nude, while 7 Springs is much brighter. Here are the swatches first in direct sunlight outdoors, then in shade indoors:
|L-R: Marc Jacobs Rei of Light, MAC Smoked Almond, 7 Springs, Topshop Rio Rio, ColourPop Dream Easy, Sephora Coral Sunset.|
It looks brighter and a little redder in direct sunlight:
I actually don’t mind the slight sheerness of 7 Springs. Dream Easy and Liquid Courage have insane pigmentation, but this means that the formula stains my lips and dries them out after an entire day of wear. 7 Springs needs to be touched up after a few hours, but I don’t find it drying at all.
I couldn’t resist trying on Photosynth Sis and 7 Springs together, though I thought the combination looked a bit clownish and swapped 7 Springs for Smoked Almond before I went out of the house.
Here’s a combination I liked much better: 7 Springs with Glossier Play Colorslide in Early Girl and Glossier Cloud Paint in Dawn (I’m still feeling the mid-’70s vibes, as you can tell).
Now for Photosynth Sis, which is basically the eyeshadow version of Julianne Moore’s 2019 Met Gala gown:
|Source: Vanity Fair. I don’t know if this fits the Met Gala’s camp theme, but I still want it.|
(For the record, Essie Million Mile Hues is the nail-polish version of Julianne Moore’s gown. I’m throwing a photo up here because I know I’ll never write a proper review.)
The Sweet Talk collection contains six new Jelly Much eyeshadow shades. Though I was tempted by almost all of them, I limited myself to one, since the Jelly Much shadow I bought last year (Half Moon) has shrunk to about half its original size in just six months. The formula still works fine, but it’s obvious that the Jelly Much formula is even more short-lived than the Super Shock one, so buy at your own risk!
The containers for the spring Jelly Much shadows have lids that (sort of) correspond to the colors inside, which is cute.
Maybe it’s just my chartreuse fetish talking, but Photosynth Sis is one of the most beautiful makeup products I’ve ever bought. I MEAN!!! It looks like a magical inkpot. Here it is in sunlight, with my hand for scale.
LOOK AT THE DAMN SWATCH!
I’ve collected a few shadows in the chartreuse/old-gold color family over the years, but the others are all powders. L-R: ColourPop Deja Boo, Photosynth Sis, Inglot 433, theBalm Seductive.
I had high hopes for Photosynth Sis’s formula because of my experience with Half Moon, which spreads across my eyelids evenly, sets quickly and thoroughly, and lasts all day. (I never reviewed Half Moon on my blog, but here’s a mini-review I wrote on Instagram.) Unfortunately, Photosynth Sis is trickier to use and wear. Here’s the best application method I’ve found so far:
1. Take a TINY DAB of eyeshadow on your finger and apply across your lid, using tapping motions instead of swiping motions (swiping will remove the product you just put down). Don’t worry if this layer isn’t completely opaque.
2. Working quickly (because this shit dries almost immediately), use a synthetic brush to blend out the edges, but ONLY the edges. Going over any other part of the shadow will make it patchy.
3. If you need another layer for opacity, wait until the first layer has dried before you add a second (again, using tapping motions). Placing fresh shadow over still-wet shadow will cause clumping and streaking.
4. Use half a tub of Vaseline to clean off the stray product that has inevitably made its way to your lower lashline and cheeks.
When a liquid eyeshadow dries down to a powdery finish, I expect it to be almost indelible, like the Glossier Lidstars. Unfortunately, Photosynth Sis is nowhere near waterproof. Here it is after a few minutes of crying (yes, even in the midst of emotional crisis I pay attention to the durability of my makeup):
If you don’t cry, sweat heavily, or get caught in the rain, Photosynth Sis will last all day without much flaking or creasing. If you do any of those things…well, see the photo above.
Basically, Photosynth Sis is a giant pain in the ass to use. I wouldn’t recommend it for a makeup beginner, and I’m not sure I’d recommend it for an experienced makeup user, either. However. When applied correctly, it produces the most brilliant chartreusey-gold foiled effect that I’m not sure any other product can replicate (though ColourPop Super Shock Shadow in Telepathy looks close):
If you love chartreuse as much as I do, and don’t mind a product that demands some extra effort, Photosynth Sis might be worth your hard-earned $8. Just don’t expect to be able to slap it on in thirty seconds before work.
And that’s that for the Sweet Talk products! I’ll review my other new ColourPop makeup in due time. (Part 2 here.)