A good idea… that fails miserably

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As my readers will know, I’m always up for new toys in nail polish and makeup.  I’m easily distracted by bells, whistles, and shiny things.

So when I saw the cute and tiny Colorstay Shadowlinks™ from Revlon, which click or link together to form your own custom eye shadow palette, I thought it was a great idea.  Here’s a picture from Revlon’s site:

Revlon Shadowlinks

Each shadow, a little more than an inch square, has a tab on one edge that slides into a groove on another shadow’s edge so you can connect as many as you want.  Wow, I thought, pick only the shades you love and make your own duo, trio, or quad — no more buying a palette where you only love a few of the shades.  Great idea, no?


Well, it is a good idea.  In theory.  First of all, each shadow costs $2.99 SRP so if you want four then the total price ends up being about $12 and for that price you can get a pretty darn good pre-built eye shadow quad.  I’d say $1.99 would be a more reasonable price per Shadowlink and I have found them on sale.  One advantage is that you don’t have to buy a separate empty palette/container to put the shadows in, like the pricey ones from Urban Decay, as just one example.

But the pigmentation is the worst.  Seriously, I think these are the most poorly-pigmented eye shadows I’ve ever used.  They look so bright and intense in the pan but that just doesn’t translate in application.

There are 30 shadows altogether.  The only place I’ve seen all 30 for sale is Ulta; CVS Pharmacy had 18 in their display and Walgreens had 24.  There are four finishes, and in degrees of shimmer/glitter from none to most, they are matte, satin, pearl, and metallic.

The matte ones feel OK but the others feel dry and rough, with the metallic ones feeling the worst, downright gritty.

To start with, I bought a few to test.  Left to right, Oyster (metallic), Candy (pearl), Taupe (satin), and Plum (matte):

Revlon SL closed

Revlon SL open

When applying them, I feel like I have to rub and rub to see any color on the applicator, and even then they don’t show up well on my skin.  At the end of the day, I couldn’t even tell what colors I’d used except I could see a bit of Plum.  It was like they evaporated.  Here are swatches on my inner arm.  Yes, Oyster really is swatched on the far left.  All you can see, both in the photo and in person, is a few flakes of glitter.

Revlon SL swatches

Then, because I’m either an idiot or a glutton for punishment, I thought some of the other shades might work better so what did I do but buy a few more.  What can I say, cute packaging gets to me.  I wanted them to work so badly!  But they weren’t any better.

I’ve since read other reviews of these Shadowlinks and have yet to see anyone say they like them.  Almost 100% agreement re: the poor pigmentation.  So I’d say save your money for eye shadow that’s actually visible.  If you absolutely must try them I’d recommend sticking with the matte shades as they are the least horrible.


6 responses »

  1. 😦
    I wonder if they’d be much better over a primer?

    2.99 does seem like a lot for one little color, which if it were amazing formula and color, you could overlook, but no.

    To be honest I’ve bought a couple Wet n Wild 8 pans for $5 each, and gotten a few other shadows in Ipsy bags, etc. and I feel like thus about all I need.

    • I tried them on my eyelids over primer and they weren’t any better. WnW has some awesomely pigmented palettes and I plan to review some of them soon. The price is definitely right on WnW too!

  2. .99 each would make the most sense to me. $4 for a quad is quite reasonable. $8 at your suggested price is not reasonable. $12 at their price is ludicrous. I am on an incredibly low, fixed income because I am disabled and live on Social Security. I quite literally have to count my nickels and dimes. There is no way I would pay that much, especially for Revlon which I consider to be one of the more affordable brands of makeup. At that rate I would end up going to the dollar store to buy the cheap stuff that no one should ever buy because it is horrible makeup….actually, calling it makeup is a stretch. Nail polish can be bought at a dollar store but something you put on your eyes, never…I am picky when it comes to eye makeup. I have had pink eye too many times and now have scars so bad on my corneas that I can no longer wear contact lenses…so yeah…no dollar store eye makeup for me. Ok…I’ll get off of my soap box now lol. Rant over.

  3. They looked pretty awesome but who knew!

  4. I almost bought a set of these because I loved the cute idea and being able to click them together in sets. Remembering I was on a no-buy I passed and now after reading your reviews I am glad I did. It’s too bad about the pigmentation because the colors are fantastic.

  5. Pingback: I’m the Toast of New York! | The Silver Nail

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