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Monday, April 26, 2010

Pressed to (almost) perfection

I finally tried my hand at pressing pigments and it is so much fun! That's sounds weird but there's a strange feeling of accomplishment that comes from pressing your loose products or fixing your broken products so they look all shiny and new again. I pressed three of my loose powder shadows, repaired 3 of my MAC eyeshadows that cracked due to my not so careful handling while depotting and also pressed my MAC loose irridescent powder into a compact.

I was initially going to do a how to post but this is so easy and others have already made great videos on how to do this process so just jump on to youtube and type in 'pressing pigments' and you'll get a whole bunch of them. The main things you're going to need are a bottle of rubbing alcohol that's preferably 70% or more alcohol ( I used Isocol which I believe is about 60-65% but that's all I could find and it still worked), a syringe or a dropper of some kind, a little container or bowl and a mixing instrument like a little spatula or even a bobbi pin will work (I used the end of a nail file).

Two of the loose shadows that I pressed were my MAC Solar Bits in Scatterrays and my Loreal On the Loose Shimmering Powder in Hyperspace. The third was actually a mix of 4 different products : the now discontinued Bobbi Brown Color Options Sparkledust for eyes in Champagne, MAC Ricepaper eyeshadow and NYX Ultra Pearl Mania loose pigments in Nude and in Mink. This last one is my favourite of the three because the end result is such a pretty coloured shadow that is perfect as an all over lid colour or as an inner corner highlight.

From left to right and then top to bottom are: Nylon, my mixed colour, Goldmine, Scatterrays, Loreal Hyperspace and Flip.

And here's a close up of the mix colour:

And here's a comparsion swatch with Nylon:

I am in love with this colour because I think it's the perfect compliment to any skin tone as it's not too yellow, brown or gold. I used to think nylon was a really good inner corner highlight but I never realised how white and cool-toned it was until I compared it with this. I've used this colour everyday since I pressed it. It doesn't have that 'professionally pressed' look complete with a nice pattern pressed on top but it does the job!

Next is a photo of my scatterrays in it's original little pot and the pressed version sitting next to it on the right:

Pressing this product hasn't changed the colour at all but it's just made it so much easier to work with. I swatched both the loose and the pressed form on to my skin ( the picture below) with a brush and the pressed one (on the left) just goes on so much easier and in a more controlled way. I also don't get as much fall out as I do with the loose form.

Last but not least I decided to press my MAC Irridescent Loose Powder in Golden Bronze because I love this colour on my cheeks to add bit of warmth and highlight but just find it really hard to work with because it tends to go everywhere. I found an old Studio Fix compact and pressed it in to there and now it goes on like a dream because I can pick up the exact amount of product I need and place it right where I want it to go. The only issue I've found is that the powder is left with the smell of the rubbing alcohol I used to mix it with but it's a small price to pay for how convenient this is to use now. Plus the smell goes a away once it's actually on your skin even though it seems quite strong when it's on your brush.

If you haven't already tried pressing your loose products or fixing your broken shadows then go out and try it because it is so easy and cheap (I paid less than $10 for a bottle of rubbing alcohol and a plastic syringe to put it in ) and while the process is a bit messy, the end result can't be beat! It'll also have you reaching for products you may have given up on because of their consistency. I'm glad I found out about this because these are all such great products that I would have essentially just wasted money on if I hadn't found a way to use them again.

UPDATE: Me and my friend just spent some time pressing her loose Covergirl Tru Blend Blush and joined two of her half empty Benefit Georgia powders into one container and they both came out great. I just may have passed on the pressing bug.

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