Kaleidos Smokey Nostalgia Blush and Lip Clays

From the Smokey Nostalgia collection, I purchased two of the four new lip clays and one of the five new blushes. There’s one more lip clay I purchased, which will be discussed later.

As an absolute blush fanatic, I was the most excited to try a blush from Kaleidos. The brand’s first attempt at blushes was a very non-inclusive release of two blush duos, so I was happy to see at least one deep skin friendly option this time. I will say that the Sanguine blush I purchased is not quite as deep as it appears on the website. This is why I’m not certain if the other shades are even lighter in person as well.

This shade is also difficult to capture accurately. It looks like a straightforward dark red in the pan, but I’d say it actually goes on the skin more like a deep rose shade. I was instantly reminded of MAC’s blush called Frankly Scarlet because of that reddish pink element.

The two blushes don’t look similar in the pan, but on my cheeks I can see that Sanguine is a bit more natural and red whereas Frankly Scarlet is a little more vibrant. I’m shocked to say this, but Sanguine is actually a tiny bit better! It isn’t often that I prefer another brand’s blush over MAC’s formula. The texture of the blush feels extremely soft, like velvet, and it’s both buildable and easy to blend. I honestly did not expect such good quality. Sanguine is pigmented, but I can make it as sheer or as intense as I want. I’ve done up to a nine hour wear test twice and it lasts on my cheek that whole time without fading if I apply a normal amount of blush. If I wear a light sheer layer, I can expect noticeable fading to start at 6-7 hours, but it was still clearly there by hour 9.
If I wasn’t confident that the other shades won’t work for me, I’d probably have placed another order to buy more. If additional shades are released in the future though, I could be tempted to get them.

One thing I can’t explain is that I swear there’s a faint rose-like scent, but fragrance isn’t listed on the packaging.

The quality of the Cloud Lab Lip Clays in this collection are the same as I’ve experienced in the past. I really wanted the Smokey Nostalgia tin, plus at least three lip products, so I opted for the Custom Lip Bundle and reserved the fourth lippie as a gift for a friend. A small part of me wishes I actually used that fourth spot for the Mahogany shade instead of Cognac because that’s one that I originally wanted as a mixing shade to deepen looks or make some less colorful.

Mixing these together isn’t as seamless as I expected. I kept seeing Kaleidos ads on YouTube mixing one of the pink-red shades (I think Cactus Flower) with Agave to create a gorgeous purple lip. They did something else with Mahogany, so I expected them to essentially mix like paint, but my attempts haven’t yielded results as dramatic as that. Also, some influencer videos showed Cognac as being a lot closer to brown than it is, so I figured (possibly incorrectly) that Cognac would be better than Mahogany for what I needed.

Despite so many options, and similarly toned ones at that, I still haven’t found my perfect shade in this formula, nor been able to find the best combo for myself either. I will continue to keep my eye out though because it’s the only liquid lipstick I’ve liked in a really long time. The unbelievable lasting power and water resistance without feeling like my lips are drying out are worth that effort to find.

Lastly, I just wanted to add that I’m shocked that Bare isn’t as pale as I expected. If it was the tiniest bit darker, it would have been perfect to wear on its own.

That’s all for today!

-Lili

INDIE BRAND SPOTLIGHT: Kaleidos Makeup Review

Kaleidos Space Age Highlighters

The Space Age line of highlighters from Kaleidos is known for having non-traditional shifty duo-chromatic shades like blue, bright red, green, etc. They even recently released a multichrome highlighter. As much fun as it would be to have colors like that in my collection, I’m not bold enough to rock shades like those regularly enough to get my money’s worth out of them. Instead, I chose to buy the two most traditional types of highlight colors: Solar Sailor, “a sleek and radiant satin gold,” and Ray Rider, “a velvety champagne sheen with a trace of peach.” Ray Rider was repromoted/reformulated during the launch of the Make Your Escape Collection. Although I don’t have the original shade to compare, according to Angelica Nyqvist, the new one is slightly lighter and smoother with a more translucent base. This change happened in June. As of November 2020, Ray Rider’s packaging was updated. However, it is not listed on the website as being a different from the original, unlike the shade Mars Melter which was reformulated with new packaging and is being sold as “Mars Melter” and “Mars Melter Original.”

These highlighters look glittery, which I usually despise, but because they blend a bit into the skin, they become a little more wearable. I used the tiniest amount of highlighter in these pictures, so a regular application would look much more intense!
Ray Rider’s particles are a bit smaller, which I like more, but I prefer the actual shade of Solar Sailor on me. Because they are right on that line of glitter level that I like, I doubt I will wear them regularly, but they won’t be completely neglected in my collection.

The Futurism Eyeshadow Palettes

Futurism I: Sci-Fi Green

This was my first Kaleidos palette, but I purchased it from a third-party. I know I’m fortunate to have such low shipping fees as a US consumer, but having to pay for shipping still bugs me. I only wanted to try one palette to see if the eyeshadow formula was worth the hype and didn’t want to spend $8 in shipping to find out. The other three palettes, however, were purchased directly from Kaleidos.

Swatches over a light layer of MAC Paint Pot.

I do think these palettes are worth the hype. That black shade is incredibly rich and dark. Sometimes yellow shadows don’t stay true to color on my eyes, but I don’t have that issue with Radioactive. The shimmers have a wonderful slip to them and the mattes are pigmented and blendable. My only complaint is that although you can see the shade differences in the swatch, my forearm is lighter than my eyelids. On my dark lids, the two matte greens look almost the same. Glamora appears more yellow than green on my eyes, which makes it harder to distinguish from Nuclear.

Futurism II: Cyber Bronze

Swatches over a light layer of MAC Paint Pot.

I’d have to double-check my single shadows collection, but I do believe plasma is the best silver eyeshadow I own (though I don’t have that many silvers in my collection). It is shockingly brilliant and intense without even being applied wet or on glitter glue. Droid is my favorite shade out of all the palettes to use from the brow to the crease. Y2K and Carbon look a bit more subtle on my eyes because they’re closer to my natural crease and lid shades. I can still see them in person, but they aren’t as distinct on my camera. Quantum is an uncommon shade among my collection and I was pleasantly surprised how much I liked it. Infared looks intense in swatches but for some reason, that shade of red doesn’t have the same vibrancy on my eyes. If you like shades like Infared, I highly recommend Salvatore, Blazed, or Homicide from Devinah Cosmetics. In my opinion, theirs are the best.

Futurism III: Astro-Pink

Swatches over a light layer of MAC Paint Pot.

This is my favorite of the four palettes I purchased! That blue-to-purple duochrome shade, Neptune, is gorgeous! The fuchsia shade, Nebula, isn’t a unique color but it is so incredibly smooth, pigmented, and easy to blend. It’s possibly the best-formulated version of that shade I have. Lightyear is just as brilliant as plasma, but with a light pinkish purple tone to it. It just looks silver on my eyes though. Cosmos is one of those sequin shades that usually drive me nuts (matte with a dash of glitter…just pick one shadow type!) but the glitter is so sparce that it’s mostly matte and I can use it as though it’s a plain matte, which is why I like it. And that shade is so pigmented and buttery smooth that I can easily use it as a powder liner. I’m not as impressed with Stardust and Lunar, purely because they don’t show up enough on my eyes, but they do give a rose-toned tinge under the brow and crease that pleases me to see in person, even if I know no one else will notice.

One interesting thing I noticed with the shimmers is that Nyx Glitter Primer, my tried and true product to enhance the impact of shadows on my eyes, doesn’t make much of a difference in terms of bringing out the pigments and sparkle. I still use it on the duochrome shades, but on the regular shimmers, in order to intensify the look, I dampen the brush with some MAC Fix+ spray. And even after that, I pack more shadow on top with my finger.

Futurism VI: Lunar Lavender

Swatches over a light layer of MAC Paint Pot.

I don’t enjoy being critical. I love gushing about good makeup, but I have to talk about issues that arise while using them. This palette gave me flashbacks to the Nomad Cosmetics Harajuku Tokyo palette that was a nightmare to use.

The top photo shows the patchy issues with MAC Paint Pot when trying to blend. The bottom two photos show how they look better on top of the Nars eye primer but despite that one being a wetter base, it still didn’t stick properly to the eyes and were blending away.

Unlike that formula, which worked better with a wet white base, I find these mattes work better on a dry white base. Because these shadows have more pigment than the Nomad Tokyo mattes, they are still usable and visible on the lids. This formula isn’t as bad as that one, but I don’t have the patience to try and make them work with continued use in the future. Even the two duochromes, though they work the same as the other Kaleidos duochromes, reminded me of the Nomad duochromes in terms of how they feel to the touch. But there’s no comparison in terms of performance and overall look. Kaleidos still wins on that front.

My improved eye looks using this palette when combined with a little of the Anastasia Beverly Hills eye primer.

Here are additional eye looks using shades from any of the 4 palettes.

Futurism V and VI are part of the new Fresh Fantasy collection, so I don’t know if there has been a tweak in the formula. As beautiful as the duochromes are, I cannot recommend anyone spend $24 to get just those two shades. $6-$8 CAD duochromes from Clionadh Cosmetics are still more intense, sparkly, and shifty than these.

I have since decided to depot these and put them all together (excluding the Lunar Lavender mattes) in one large custom magnetic palette. I know I wouldn’t get as much use out of them if I kept them all in their separate smaller palettes.

For anyone interested in ordering from Kaleidos, I recommend checking out the bundle section on their website. That’s how I was able to get any three palettes I wanted (excluding the limited edition Futurism IV) for $59 instead of $72. There is free shipping at $70, so I only needed to add one more item to my cart. There are also affiliate codes that can be found from different YouTubers, but the codes don’t work on the bundle.

Also, you can expect a long wait once your order is placed. I completed my order on September 9th and it arrived October 13th.
24 of those days were in transit as it was shipped directly from their factory/manufacturer in China. It roughly took a week to travel from Shanghai to LA, a week to clear customs, and another week from Compton to my address.

I believe I covered everything. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment.
Thank you for reading!

-Lili