I love neon makeup, and I love that it seems to be a trend right now. Ruby May Cosmetics recently put out their Street Art palette and Blush Tribe recently ran a pre-order for their new Neon palette, and I’ve got my eyes on both of those little lovelies. And of course, you know that ColourPop had to get in on the action! Just before Coachella they released a collection of “Festival Ready” favorites including a 12 pan palette, all available as singles as well, that featured 4 pressed neon pigments and 8 pressed glitters. They also released a collection of 5 liners, 4 in neon shades and 1 white to help provide a good base for those wild and vibrant shades. I decided to pick up the palette and the liners, even though I really sort of hate pressed glitters. I wasn’t wrong.
Let’s start with the liners. I feel like liners are hard to mess up, and I do love these colors. The pink shade is Insomniac, the orange is Untz, yellow is CRSSD (I’m clearly to old to understand what that is supposed to stand for – I’m assuming something important to festival culture?), and the green shade is Electric Daisy. Because I’m me and I’m always a hot mess, I somehow managed to misplace the white liner, Exit, somewhere on the way to my office to do photographs, so it isn’t pictured; however, I did have a chance to play with it and the performance is pretty much the same. Overall I found that these were pretty good for a gel liner this light and bright. The yellow, green, and white shades were a little inconsistent, but white pigments are known for making things a little trickier to work with, and white is one of the prime components of a neon shade! The formula is also really soft – I didn’t have a lot extended out of the tube, but both the yellow and the green liners broke while I was using them the first time. That’s disappointing for something whose only job is painting a line, but despite that I was pretty pleased with these. I read somewhere that the green shade has some sort of pigment that makes it not safe for the eye area? I didn’t keep the box, so I can’t confirm, but just be aware that it might not be meant for the waterline. Again, I’m a hot mess so I don’t always research what is or is not supposed to go in various places all over my body. My bad.
The “Headliner Palette” was basically a collection that included the 4 neon pigments, 8 glitters, and one of CP’s new yellow/pink cactus palettes. Given the nature of festival looks, I think it would have been cooler if they had used one of the new holographic magnetic palettes, but those don’t seem to have a small size, and that doesn’t affect the performance so I’ll just get over myself, shall I?
Here are the swatches. They are done over OMFG face primer, and apparently I forgot my entire process so I did them completely differently than I usually do. The pigments are all swatched with a finger, then each with a brush in the same order. For the glitters, I just did finger application since I wouldn’t mess up one of my brushes by trying to wrangle these glitters with it! The top photo is my studio lighting without a flash and the bottom photo is the same lighting with a flash:
L to R: Sandbar, OOO, Keep Scrolling, and Seeing Stars (and then the same shades repeated, but with a brush)
Sandbar is a bright fuchsia pink, beautifully matte and very pigmented. I’m not familiar enough with CP’s line of single shadows (they are a recent obsession!) but I’ve heard that this shade, and maybe one other, isn’t actually new but is being repromoted with this collection. Cannot confirm. OOO is a bright reddish orange neon; I would have preferred more of a traffic cone orange sort of neon, but this is a nice option, and this will pair nicely with red shadows to help brighten up looks with something like the Blood Sugar palette from Jeffree Star. Keep Scrolling is an electric lime that struggled a little with the brush and was the weakest of the shades, but still a fairly nice color. And Seeing Stars is a bright, vibrant purple – I was really impressed with how pigmented and consistent this was. Purples can be a pain in the ass and this one is actually really easy to apply and blend. These neons were all pretty good, and they are making me excited to try more neon options and make some crazy fun looks!
Now for the glitters:
L to R: Palooze, Boombayah, Fyre, and Freebird
My main complaint with these four is that three of them were clearly meant to match up with the neon pigments: Boombayah is a bright orange with holographic reflect to pair with OOO, Fyre is a lime green with holo to match up with Keep Scrolling, and Free Bird is a purple holo glitter that pairs up with Seeing Stars. But instead of doing a neon pink glitter for Sandbar, they paired it with a sunny yellow glitter with iridescent sparkle. I love yellow, and that glitter is pretty, but why do three out of 4 as pairs, and then not do the last one? You could have still done the yellow and just bumped one of the other four shades. It’s not like you can ever have too much neon! I like these neon colors, but I have some problems with this formula that I’ll address below.
L to R: Hungry Ghost, Renegade, LightShow, Indio
Hungry Ghost is a opalescent glitter that can look yellowy orange or greenish gold, depending on the angle and the lighting. Renegade is a sort of Rose Gold with some holo sparkle. Lightshow is a white, explosive iridescent and holo glitter. Indio is a light pink glitter with a lot of holo sparkle. These are more subdued in terms of the base color, but they have strong holo or iridescent properties that make them really fun.
These glitters are a bit of a mess. They don’t have nearly as much binding ingredients in them as say the pressed glitters in the Pretty Rich palette or in the tarte High Tides & Good Vibes palette (review coming soon!), so the glitter tends to get really messy, really quickly. The glitter pieces themselves are also larger and generally chunkier and they look kind of messy. If you just want some sparkle, these are a fun addition, and it’s not like they are super expensive (if you want one shade of the pressed glitters, it will run you 5 dollars!) but I just feel like there are such easier ways to do glitter now that these pressed glitters, especially this formulation, just seem pointless. Grab some loose glitter and your favorite adhesive and go to town; if you want a larger, more diffused application, the Space Jams and Space Pastes from Lemonhead LA (or even the Glitterally Obsessed from ColourPop’s own line) are a better option.
This collection is fun and I’m sure I’ll get some use out of it, but I’m anticipating lots of mess with the glitters. We’ll see how long they last in my collection before I declutter them, but for now I’m interested to see how the sparkle can amp up my looks.
What are your thoughts – is neon makeup something that has you electrified, or does it make your bulb burn out? Are you loving the festival looks you’re seeing this year? I’m loving that more brands are putting out festival collections that aren’t banking on cultural appropriation to make the sale, so that’s a step in the right direction. What would you like to see in future collections from this brand? Any other neon products you’re dying to try or that you’re currently loving? As always, sound off in the comments below!