Still no sign of Burberry makeup in Texas (boo), but I am truly thrilled to feature today’s guest swatches, from the extraordinary Kristie at naturalNchicmakeup. Kristie is a photographer and part time/freelance makeup artist, so her application and color descriptions are not only spot-on, but her photos (from the swatches to the product shots) are magazine-worthy.
In sympathy for those of us still without a Burberry counter, Kristie took a really thorough look at this fledgling line. Here are her thoughts and swatches:
I started my investigation with Burberry’s Sheer Eyeshadows. These retail for $29 (for 0.088 oz. of product). There are a total of 20 colors, ranging from white to dark blue and everything else in between.
Now at first glance, the skeptic in all of us will think, “sheer eyeshadows? No thanks!” I’m here to tell you they are anything but sheer, and I’m not sure why Burberry decided to name them that way. One swipe is all you need for these to show up. They are incredibly smooth — no, make that buttery smooth. I was pleasantly surprised by the feel and pigmentation. The colors are not entirely unique, but the feel, and the shimmer on the lid is simply unbeatable. I love my MAC and Chanel, but I personally think Burberry just upped the game with these eyeshadows.
All the eyeshadows are imprinted Burberry plaid, as are their compacts. Below are swatches of all 20 eyeshadows to give you a better idea of their colors. Please do keep in mind these are taken under mall lighting that doesn’t fully capture the luminescence or shimmer of the products.
1 Pearly White is exactly that, a pearly white color with shimmer. This would be best as a highlighter in the inner corner of the eyes.
5 Chestnut is a medium brown that’s great paired with Rosewood for a subtle smokey eye.
2 Trench is a beige with slight shimmer that blends in really well with my NC25/NC30 skin tone. A quick pat on the lid will give you that everyday “why does she look so good with no makeup on?” look. You can also use this as a brow bone highlighter.
6 Almond is lighter than Chestnut, a light brown that’s good for staple neutral looks.
3 Porcelain is a creme color with gold shimmer. Apply this to the inner lid with a darker crease color for a subtle glisten in the light.
7 Taupe Brown is, well, taupe brown. This is definitely a crease color, and it has a slight shimmer.
4 Gold Trench is a more gold version of Trench. It’s a little bit more muted than Trench, but still pretty.
8 Khaki is a classic color. Burberry’s version has almost no shimmer.
Not a neutral fan? No problem. Burberry has a great lineup of pigmented blues, blacks, pinks, and violets. These swatches are all two swipes, to show you how pigmented are, even under indoor lighting conditions.
9 Rosewood is a shimmery light taupe and my favorite color. It gives a nice dimension on the lids. It has a bit of shimmer and it really jumped out at me from first swatch.
13 Lavender Blue is more of a lavender/lilac. Not sure where the “blue” comes in, but it’s a very pretty, girly, soft color with very slight shimmer.
17 Pearl Grey is your classic grey, it will work best for a smokey eye that’s not traditional black.
10 Antique Rose is a muted dark rose — closer to mauve in my opinion.
14 Lavender has a tint of blue/purple that’s very pretty. It also has slight shimmer. I can see many beautiful color combos with this and Rosewood/Trench/Lavender Blue.
18 Midnight Black is classic black with barely any shimmer.
11 Tea Rose is a beautiful medium, buildable pink. I can see this being gorgeous on ladies of lighter skintone.
15 Slate Blue is medium blue with no shimmery effects on the skin.
19 Midnight Plum is plum with shimmer.
12 Pale Rose is very pale pink. It has an iridescent pink shimmer duochrome that’s very similar to MAC’s Nanogold. Very pretty in person.
16 Pearl Blue is a sky blue with baby blue shimmer. I think this will be a winner for ladies with blue or green eyes.
20 Midnight Blue is darker blue with baby blue shimmer. This is an excellent color for a nontraditional smoky eye, paired with Pearl Blue or Midnight Black.
Overall, I am very impressed with Burberry’s eyeshadows and LOVE their feel/texture. Most soft eyeshadows crumble or produce fallout when applied to the lids. These stay put and are very smooth. At $29, they’re 50 cents more expensive than Chanel, but I think they’re worth the price. The shadows give a chic, understated, and natural look.
What came home with me?
There’s just one shade of Burberry’s Effortless Mascara Volumising Enhancer: Midnight Black. I did not test this on my lashes for sanitary reasons. The brush head is similar to Diorshow — maybe slightly smaller.
The five eyeliners (Eye Definer Pencils) are all classic colors: black, blue, purple, brown, green.
They’re $27 and incredibly pigmented and smooth. Two swipes and the colors are vibrant on the skin. #1 Midnight Black is your basic black, #2 Midnight Brown is brown with gold shimmer, #3 Midnight Ash is a khaki green with gold shimmer, #4 Midnight Blue and #5 Midnight Plum speak for themselves.
I picked up #2 because it seemed the most useful for my everyday use. Unfortunately, it’s proved a disappointment. The color smudges and fades after 4-5 hours on a regular day. They don’t hold up at all on my lower lash (but maybe that’s the fault of my oily lids). The colors are beautiful, but at $27, I really expected them to outperform MAC, Urban Decay, and even Make Up For Ever.
Onto the lips. Reds, pinks, burgundy, beige — whatever your heart desires, Burberry has you covered, with 21 “Lip Cover” Soft Satin Lipsticks, 12 “Lip Glow” Natural Lip Glosses, and 6 complementary Lip Definer Shaping Pencils.
The lipsticks are $30, and both the lipstick and the case are stamped with the classic Burberry plaid. The case is also magnetic closure, gunmetal grey, and heavier than MAC/Estee Lauder/Lancome. I’d say its weight is similar to Chanel’s Rouge Coco. I definitely give props to Burberry for their chic, modern packaging.
These lipsticks are creamy and have a faint perfume smell that’s pleasant — definitely not as strong as YSL Rouge Volupte. If you have persistently dry lips, though, I do NOT recommend these without a lip balm underneath. They emphasize dry patches so please prep your lips (gentle scrub) before application.
I find all the colors very pigmented and creamy — they’re slightly glossy but not as creamy as YSL Rouge Volupte (I find those to be so creamy as to be somewhat difficult to apply).
All the swatches were done with one swipe so you can imagine how vibrant and pigmented they are.
The first 12 colors of the line are lighter peaches and pinks (and #2 Cameo and #3 Cameo Pink are my top picks).
If you love darker pinks or reds, I think Burberry provides a wide variety of classic, elegant shades. Burgundy lovers will like #21 Deep Burgundy; those looking for a bright coral will love #17 Union Red.
If you’re not the lipstick type (or if you like to top your lipstick with gloss), you can choose one of the 12 Lip Glow Natural Lip Glosses. These retail for $27, which is similar to other high-end brands (Chanel, YSL, Dior, etc.). These aren’t sticky, have no strange smells, and feel like a cross between Chanel Aqualumiere and Dior glosses.
Like everything else in the line, the packaging is chic, with a plaid cap and a doe’s foot applicator. Compared to other brands, the tubes feel slightly heavier (which I equate with luxury).
#1 Rosewood, #4 Blush, and #7 Cameo Pink are my top picks from this line. Coral lovers will love #8 Cameo while nude lovers will eye #9 Nude Beige and #10 Nutmeg. Cameo Pink is duochrome with a peachy-pink frost. I have seen this color before from Chanel’s permanent line. Rosewood is a “my lips but better” color, perfect for a neutral gal like me.
Like the lipsticks and glosses, the lipliners are creamy and pigmented. Most are satin finish, with the exception of #1 Nude Beige (which has slight shimmer).
I’m particularly fond of #1 for a nude look, #2 Dusty Rose for a “my lips but better” pop of color paired with a pink lipstick, and #5 Brick Red for a classic come-hither red that would be wearable for all skin tones. Mauve/burgundy lovers will like #4 Bright Plum. Since these are so creamy, I can imagine putting on #2 paired with #4 lipgloss for a pretty summer look.
Overall I find the lip line very nice: pigmented and creamy. The products feel smooth on the lips, and my favorite shades really brightened my face. The iconic packaging is a definite plus for me.
At $30 for a lipstick and $27 for a lipgloss, are these on par with other high end lines? Are they worth it? I personally think Burberry is in a league of its own, and I am excited to see more from the brand. I’d love to see more light pinks, roses, and mauves in future collections.
Compared to the wealth of lip shades, Burberry has a relatively modest offering of blushes: five shades ranging from pale pink to rustic rose. These are $42 each (the same as Chanel’s Joues Contraste) and have a faint floral fragrance, which isn’t as strong as Chanel or Guerlain. The compacts and the powders are both imprinted with the Burberry plaid, and each blush includes a small brush for application (and for mini brushes, these are really nice: soft, not scratchy).
#5 Blossom is coral but turns completely orange on me. It might be suitable for darker skin tones, but not sure about light/medium skin tones. #1 Russet is also very dark on me as a blush — even too much as a bronzer. #2 Cameo and #3 Rose look like they’d be wearable for all skin tones; #4 Â Peony might be for light to light-medium skintones. It could look ashy on darker skintones.
The blushes are each shown with two swipes, and they are very pigmented. They are not as finely milled as Chanel or as frosty as Dior. I do find these super smooth to the touch, but they are more powdery than I like. I hope Burberry expands the color selection in future collections.
There are also four shades of bronzer ($48). These come in the same plaid compacts as the blushes, but do not include a mini brush. All of the colors are satin finish with the exception of #4 which has shimmer.
I am already tan, and I usually don’t use bronzers because I can never find a color that works on my skintone. Sadly this was the case with all four bronzers from Burberry’s line. They turned very dark and either orange or too brown on me. If I had to choose a favorite, it would be #4 because I liked the slight shimmer.
Keep in mind these swatches are just two swipes of product. They’re pigmented, so a light hand is definitely needed. The feel is smooth and slightly powdery, similar to the blushes.
The Sheer Luminous Compact Foundation comes in nine shades. It’s $55, and the bottom of the magnetic-close compact holds an application sponge.
I only swatched shades 1-5 (couldn’t spend ALL day at the counter). #2 has the most pink undertone while #5 has the most yellow undertone.
On my arm, you can’t quite see the pink in #2, but I think you can definitely see the beige and yellow in #3 and #5. For my skintone, I’m leaning toward 4 or 5 because I’m yellow-toned. #1 would be good for light skintones. There are also darker shades 6â€“9. Each of the swatches was two swipes, so these powders are definitely buildable for a light/medium coverage. They’re very smooth and not as powdery as the blushes or bronzers.
If you prefer liquid to powder, Sheer Luminous Fluid Foundation also comes in nine shades. I didn’t swatch these, but I did try shade #5 on my face.
It felt creamy and smooth, but not overly heavy. The texture reminds me of my La Mer The Treatment Creme Foundation — but Burberry doesn’t make the T-zone an oily mess by the end of a long day.
It’s hard to describe the way this foundation feels: creamy/mousse-like yet liquidy. It was very comfortable and did not separate or become blotchy over the eight hours that I wore it.
This foundation does seem to emphasize dry patches, so ladies with dry skin may want to try before buying.
If you’re not in one of the five cities in the U.S. with a Burberry counter, your only option is to order from Nordstrom.com. If you’re outside the U.S., Burberry cosmetics are also available at selected Harrods (UK) and Lane Crawford (Hong Kong).