As with the 2012 version, there are 4 sets, each with an eye shadow palette, a blush, and lip color. The eye shadow palettes are housed in limited edition compacts with pretty lacy print, the blushes are in paper cartons with matching lacy print, and the lip colors are also in a cute tube packaging. As the EX-2 and EX-4 sets have the 3D Gradation Eyes in 2 limited edition palettes I went for these just as I did last year. Otherwise, the colors available in the permanent lineup look boring ^.^
Coffret D'Or 2013 Total Designing Sets EX-2 and EX-4. All pictures taken in natural light without flash.
EX-1 in pink packaging:
- 3D Gradation Eyes 01 Pink Beige
- Color Blush PK-22, same color blush as the 2012 sets
- Bright Up Rouge (Creamy Liquid) PK-264
EX-2 in pink packaging:
- 3D Gradation Eyes 05 Soft Plum (limited edition)
- Color Blush PK-22, same as in EX-1
- Bright Up Rouge (Creamy Liquid) PK-264, same as EX-1
EX-3 in blue packaging:
- 3D Gradation Eyes 02 Mint Brown
- Color Blush RS-17, same color blush as the 2012 sets
- Bright Up Rouge (Creamy Liquid) PK-263
EX-4 in blue packaging:
- 3D Gradation Eyes 06 Beige Navy
- Color Blush RS-17, same as in EX-3
- Bright Up Rouge (Creamy Liquid) PK-263, same as EX-3
EX-2 and EX-4
I like the 3D Gradation Eyes very much, not in the least because they're beautiful to look at ^.^ All 5 shades are pressed powder and they are super soft and silky, almost buttery to the youth, even the sparkly top wash! They are also decently pigmented, especially the liner color. The huge down side is that there are 3 light colors in 2/3 of the pan versus only 1 medium and 1 darker color in the remaining 1/3, so basically you don't get much color at all :(
Another thing I don't like about the compact is that it still has the annoying clear plastic flap that's been glued to the underneath of the shadow pan. You can't really see it in the 2 pictures below but it's there, and it gets in the way whenever I open these compacts to use. That said, I like the two palettes I have enough to over look both the lighter colors as well as the stupid flapping plastic. Coffret D'Or has kept up their trend of fine shimmers and sparkly top washes without the high-wattage bling. The overall look is softly glowy, sophisticated, and understated.
- 05 Soft Plum: soft plum indeed and this palette gives a feminine and lady-like look. At first glance this palette looks pretty neutral, but when comparing it side by side (below) with 06 Beige Navy though, it's clearly a warmer palette.
Clockwise from top left, the colors are:
- Base/highlighter: pearly satin, low intensity. A pink-tinged off white. I know it looks ivory in both the close-up as well as the swatch picture, but when compared side by side with the base/highlighter in 06 Beige Navy, it's obviously pink-tinted.
- Sparkly top wash: high shimmer, very sheer. Also pink-tinted off white, and the shimmers are much finer than your average sparkly top watch. The result is a transparent veil of pretty sparkles that's not glittery or gaudy at all.
- Lid shade: shimmer, very sheer. A warm fleshy pink that's completely translucent - see the swatch for yourself! The base/highlighter shade has more opacity and pigmentation than this lid shade! However, this shade is not completely useless. The shimmers in it are such that it gives a glistening wet finish and is quite pretty!
- Liner shade: pearly satin, high intensity. A gorgeous dark plum that's admittedly darker on the back of my hands than on my eyes. However, thanks to the high pigmentation a couple of layers will make it a nice liner shade.
- Medium shade: semi-metallic, medium intensity. A pretty taupe beige, again with a pink tint and fine shimmers that give a glistening semi-metallic finish. Lovely, but too bad it's on the light side for a medium shade and I can't even contour the crease with it. So I actually wear it on the lid below the crease ^.^
- 06 Beige Navy: this palette gives a more sophisticated look, and despite having a base/highlighter as well as the medium shade that look very similar to those in 05 Soft Plum, they are different colors and they definitely don't look the same when compared side by side.
Clockwise from top left, the colors are:
- Base/highlighter: pearly satin, low intensity. An ivory that's slightly yellow.
- Sparkly top wash: high shimmer, very sheer. I want to say this is ivory, but when I compare this palette to the 05 Soft Plum, this sparkly top wash turns out to have a slight greenish tint!
- Lid shade: shimmer, very sheer. A pale peach-tinged beige. Like the lid shade in 05 Soft Plum, this one is also translucent but gives a glistening wet finish.
- Liner shade: pearly satin, high intensity. A gorgeous inky blue that makes a really lovely liner.
- Medium shade: semi-metallic, medium intensity. A golden beige with fine shimmers that give a glistening semi-metallic finish. I did a double-take with this shade too until I compare it side by side with the medium shade in 05 Soft Plum, and that was when the gold became apparent.
05 Soft Plum versus 06 Navy Beige. Note the pint in the base/highlighter (top left) as well as the sparkly top wash (middle) in 05 Soft Plum, versus the greenish tinge in the sparkly top wash (middle) of the 06 Navy Beige. Also, note the pink in the medium shade (lower left) of 05 Soft Plum versus the gold in 06 Navy Beige.
Overall, I'm pretty pleased with the 2013 Total Designing Sets I have, although I do wish Coffret D'Or didn't repeat both blush colors from last year's sets. And I actually prefer last year's version of the blushes anyway as they were housed in adorable round tins. The tins were were bulky but still more sturdy than these paper carton blushes, which are still bulky. And I use my own blush brush so the fan brushes that come with the paper carton are useless for me. At least last year's pink puffs were cute for display purposes... Sigh, I guess I can't have my cake and eat it too.
Since I've already reviewed these two Color Blushes in PK-22 and RS-17, I won't repeat again. I like these blushes a lot because they make my skin glowy and smooth, so I guess it's not a bad thing to have more of them, but the point of sets are to try different colors, so repeating colors from year to year defeats the purpose if you ask me. Anyway, if you're wondering how 2012's blushes compare to 2013's, well, I've swatched both versions below ^.^ They look the same to me. I mean, if I want to use a magnifying glass and pick at them, I can probably find a slight difference but that would be ridiculous.
Left picture: 2013 Color Blush PK-22 and RS-17.
Right picture: 2013 version on top row versus 2012 versions on bottom row. They look the same, right?
Were Coffret D'Or to repeat last year's lip colors too I might not have bought the 2013 sets at all! I've also reviewed the texture and finish for these Bright Up Rouge (Creamy Liquid) from the 2012 sets. Basically, they're very glossy, super moisturizing, and in the same size mini tubes. However, in the 2013 sets I'm pleasantly surprised to find the two colors PK-264 and PK-263 both brighter, slightly more opaque, and with more pigment than 2012's BE-202 and PK-262. The lasting power doubled too to about 2-3 hours instead of a meager 1 hour for the 2012's colors. Definitely an improvement!
PK-264 from EX-2 (pink) and PK-263 from EX-4 (blue).
- PK264: a warm and flattering coral with very fine gold shimmers.