L’Oreal’s Infallible eyeshadows (Drugstore, $7.95) are intended to last twenty-four hours on the lid without creasing, fading or budging. The formula is a loose powder that’s been intensely compacted, and each container comes with a little stopper for re-compacting it if it becomes loose again. I’ve already reviewed two shades, Bronzed Taupe and Golden Sage. This one is Continuous Cocoa, and it’s a matte deep brown, suitable for use as a liner as well as a shadow.
These have been compared to Armani’s Eyes to Kill along with some other high end shadows. I don’t have those, and I’m sure many of you also don’t either. If you’ve ever worked with loose pigments, you know they can be far more intense than compacted formulas. Think Mac pigments, or Bare Minerals loose shadows, of even Elf’s surprisingly good loose shadows. Now imagine those compacted without losing any pigmentation, and you’ve got the formula of these shadows. That said, not all shades perform the same.
Continuous Cocoa is one of the best shades, and that’s good news because excellent drugstore mattes are few and far between. Unlike Golden Sage, it looked exactly the color on my skin that it did in the pan. It went on as dark as intense as I had hoped/expected. It performed beautifully as a shadow liner and as a shadow. And you can apply it very softly as a layer to add depth to other colors – for example, put a lighter color all over the lid, then add just a little of Continuous Cocoa in the outer corner to deepen it, and you’ve got a beautiful look that’s soft and neutral enough to daytime. But on the other hand, you can apply this over the lower third of the lid and under the lower lashes to form the basis of a killer evening smoky eye.
I love using intense shadows as liner, because they have a beautiful soft matte look that stays all day but cleans off so easily. Continuous Cocoa is perfect for this use. In fact, I like it so well that when I’m too lazy to get out one of my palettes containing Urban Decay’s Blackout, I always have Continuous Cocoa on hand for a very deep brown line instead.
I don’t test makeup for 24 hours, but this shade does last a long time (12-14 hours, at least) without any creasing or fading on me. I consider this a high performance eyeshadow. In fact, when I swatched this shade, it wouldn’t wash off with soap and water, like most eyeshadows – I had to get out the eye makeup remover (which does take it off easily – I want my makeup to last, but I also want it to come off when I’m done!).
These shadows work very well with a brush. You can use a finger and get good results – I personally prefer brushes. And that makes them very flexible, because you can use fingers if you’re in a hurry or want to travel without bringing brushes, or you can use brushes to get the kind of precision that’s so hard to achieve with fingers.
See that little stopper marked “do not discard”? Take that seriously, because you can use it to re-compact the shadow if it dries out and turns to loose powder again. Also, leaving it in the container keeps as much air as possible away from the shadow to prevent drying out.
The bottom line
Overall, I recommend this line. I’ve read from multiple sources that the purple shade is terrible, and I’ve had mixed feelings about the color on some of the shades I’ve reviewed. But I always get lots of compliments when I wear these – there’s something multi-dimensional about the colors, which reminds me of Bare Minerals extremely beautiful but irritatingly messy loose powders. This is one of the best shades, so I strongly recommend it if you could use a great deep matte brown in your collection.