Sunday, October 30, 2011

Bare Escentuals: Box of Gems

This is one of the larger holiday kits from Bare Escentuals. It is only availble at QVC right now. The Box of Gems has ten mini eye shadows, five mini buxom glosses, and five 100% natural glosses. Most of the the glosses are old colours but there are two new ones, I think. All ten eye shadows are new. Most of the eye shadows are neutral.

Sparkling: Is a soft foggy white. At first I thought it would be similar to snowflake but when you put sparkling on it looks matte.

Gleam: Is a very pale pink that reminds me a little bit of blush. When you put it on the eye by itself it does not look pink it looks just like a light neutral. It is also matte.

Glow: From the swatch I thought glow would be more sparkly but on the eye it just has a slight sheen. It is a soft light orangy peach.

Twinkle: Is a cranberry redish brown. It almost seems like a pink brown but with earthy tones. It also applies matte.

Incandescent: This is more of a chocolate brown with a neutral glowing shimmer. The shimmer comes out more when you foil it. It looks darker in the swatch than it applies. If you do a light layer you can see that it is actually a mid-tone shade. It would make a nice crease colour or all over lid colour.

Solitaire: This is probably the most unique shade of all the colours in this set. It is a sparkling slate. It has blue/grey tones and a slight silver sparkle. The sliver sparkle disappears when you apply it. It looks grey on.

Jewel: This looks like a bold pink in the swatch and I'm sure you could get it to show up that way on the eye if you foiled it or just did a heavy layer of it. But I was pleasently surprised how soft it went on when I used a light hand. This also applies matte.

Beam: Is a medium blue that is similar to Ocean but more blue. This also applies matte. It is a pretty shadw but similar to other blues I have.

Gem: This is a really pretty emerald green with a hint of teal. It applies mostly matte and the green, rather than being bright, applies as a smoky green.

Locket: This is so pretty! This is a nice dark purple with blue sparkle in it. It blends out nicely as a crease colour. It retains some of its sparkle when you apply it wet and it is dark enough to use as a liner.

Overall this set is just okay. If you love matte shadows then you should get this. But if you were looking for exciting colours and a wide variety of textures I think you would be disappointed by this set. I'm not sure I would buy it if I had it to do over again.

Here are some comparison swatches:

Too Faced Shadow Insurance,
50/50 mix well rested/clear radiance all over,
Gleam under brow,
Glow lash to crease,
Twinkle in crease,
Incandescent outer corner,
Big and Bright liner in Charbronze upper lash line,
Buxom mascara.

CHEEKS: Gorgeous blush
LIPS: Tarte Glitzy

Too Faced Shadow Insurance,
50/50 mix well rested/clear radiance all over,
Sparkling under brow,
Gleam lash to crease on inner 1/2,
Jewel lash to crease on outer 2/3,
Locket in crease and outer corner,
Locket wet lined on top and bottom,

CHEEKS: Miracle blush
LIPS: Cranberry Sorbet gloss

Too Faced Shadow Insurance,
50/50 mix well rested/clear radiance all over,
Sparkling under brow,
Gem lash to crease and lower lash line,
Beam in crease and outer corner,
Solitaire in V,
Round the Clock liner in Midnight top and bottom,
Buxom Amplified mascara.

CHEEKS: Floret blush
LIPS: Tarte Perky


  1. I have to say only a couple of those colors (Sparkling and Gleam) look like actual mattes in your swatches. All the others appear to range from sheens to shimmers. But none of them strike me as terribly original. The one that appeals the most to me is Locket.But even that one seems very similar to at least a couple other purples in my collection. I think I can safely pass on this kit, based on your review!

  2. I was surprised that all of them turned out to apply matte. After I did the swatches I was hoping that at least some of them would have some sparkle but all the sparkle disappeared once I put them on my eye. The sparkle in Locket did show up when I used it wet as a liner and maybe that will be true of some others. I agree though that you could probably find dupes for alomst all of these colours if you have a good size collection.

  3. You could try using a shimmery primer, like UDPP Sin. I did that under Meet The Plums this week and was very pleased with the results.

  4. That's a good idea. I think I will. Thanks!