Nars – Eyeshadows (Duos and Singles)

20 Sep

Nars Shadow Duos

It’s taken me awhile to warm up to Nars. The first shadows I bought were hard to work with and had crappy colour payoff. I persevered, however, and discovered that over time, they seemed to loosen up and I could collect more powder per brush stroke, and the payoff improved. I’ve been experimenting with different Nars shadows – both singles and duos since. Here are the results.

 L-R: Elsa, Brumes, Underworld
  • Elsa: I just got this one, and honestly I haven’t used it much yet. The shades are light blue and lilac, with a frosty finish. I think they’d be great over other colours to add a subtle shimmer, or as a subtle wash.
  • Brumes: This is one of my favourites. Both colours are matte, one is a greyed mid-tone brown, and the other is a bluish-grey slate colour. I like using them instead of pencil or cream liner along the lash line for a softer daytime look.
  • Underworld: I love the name of this duo – and it’s perfect for the shades. One is an ethereal pale silver, the other is a rich, deep blue shimmer. They’re great together, but can also be worn alone or with other shadows. I love the sheen the silver carries, and it wears into the lid well.
Clockwise from top: Cheyenne, Kalahari, Bohemian Gold
  • Cheyenne: The burgundy in this duo is beautiful and it works well with purples or mauves. I find shades like this look stunning on hazel and green eyes, since the red undertones will draw out the green in the eyes. The orange tone doesn’t appeal to me all that much – I don’t tent to use oranges – but if you’re into them, this is a nice one.
  • Kalahari: This is the first Nars duo I ever purchased. I didn’t like this all that much at first as I found that it was hard to get good payoff. But over time using it seemed to loosen up the powder a bit and it’s easier to work with now (this has been the case for a few Nars shadows). These really need a base to make the most of their colour, though. The shade on the left is a neutral bronze brown that I love alone or paired with slightly darker shades. The other shade is a lovely bruised plum that has a hint of purple and looks amazing on hazel eyes. Again, great as a neutral daytime shade!
  • Bohemian Gold: This is an interesting duo. The darker orange (though, as I said, I’m not big on oranges) has a slight pink duochrome and is quite a unique shade. The lighter peach shade, however, I absolutely love on the lid with a black line for a simple, elegant look. It’s deceptive in the pan, though. It seems quite neutral, but when applied the orange pops out and it looks more peach than expected.
Clockwise from top: Wicked, Star Sailor, Caravaggio
  • Wicked: I’m assuming this is based on the book/musical, since it has a light green and shimmery white. Honestly it’s more of a gimmick duo than anything else, and it doesn’t really stand out from the collection.
  • Star Sailor: This duo reminds me of olive and moss. The lighter shade is a gold mustard, while the other is a deep green/brown shimmer. Wearable, and would complement hazel and brown eyes beautifully.
  • Caravaggio: Super bright! If you want dramatic shades and are someone who likes to make a bold statement with your shadow, this is for you. The purple can be toned down if layered or paired with mauve shades. Be careful with the pink if you have pale skin, because anything that’s deep pink or red-based can make eyes look tired and irritated.
 Clockwise from top: Ondine, Night Fever, Night Porter, New York, Nepal

I only have a few Nars single shadows because I tend to think they’re quite pricey, despite being a good amount of product. There are a few nice shades, however:

  • Ondine: Light lilac/mauve with gold shimmer. This one reminds me of MAC’s Trax, only much cooler and without the slight berry tinge.
  • Night Fever: Black with red shimmer. This is nearly an exact dupe for MAC’s Beauty Marked. Similarly, this must be pressed onto a tacky base (like a paint pot) to show up the red in it, and does better on a black base.
  • Night Porter: Like Night Fever, only with green shimmer instead of red and more green tone to the base colour. Dark forest green that can be used for a green smoky eye – quite a unique shade.
  • New York: I absolutely love this shade. It’s one of the only matte Nars shadows I have, and it’s a truly gorgeous muted plum red earthtone.
  • Nepal: This was the first Nars shadow I ever purchased. It’s a pretty neutral colour – pink/beige shimmer. I like this all over the lid with a dark, strong line for a classic look.

I’d recommend proceeding with caution when purchasing Nars shadows. They don’t always give the best payoff, and some are strictly for the adventurous type! They’re quite pricey – though you get a fair amount of product for your dollar – so they’re not for those who prefer to keep their makeups to the basics and the best value for money. Given their price, I wouldn’t recommend stretching your beauty dollars for these over other high-end brands. At the very least, I recommend playing with them a bit in the store and viewing swatches in daylight before committing.

Ratings:
Packaging: 5/5
Product quality: 4/5 (quality of shadows varies – some are great, some are hard to work with)
Worth the price? Some I’d say definitely, but not all of them, since they’re very pricey. Purchase with caution if you’re on a budget!
Would I purchase again? It’s hard to say. They do come with a lot of product, so they’ll last a long time. Which is good, considering the cost.
Cruelty-Free? Still looking into it.

Where to find it: Sephora in store and online. Nars online. The Bay department store (Nars Counter).
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