For all of you that keep up with Kim from Keeping up with Kardashians, you should be pretty acquainted with the very talented educator and makeup artist, Mario Dedivanovic. For those who do not know him, he is a celebrity makeup artist who has spent the past twenty years building up to the release of his own collection aptly named Makeup by Mario. Mario's story is incredibly inspiring. His talent is unmatched, but does his new makeup line hold up to his golden reputation?
The Makeup by Mario collection launched in stores (Sephora exclusive) and online at Mario's website on October 1st and is already making headlines in the beauty industry. Mario has done collabs before, but he has never launched his own makeup line! That being the case, I felt that this would be an excellent opportunity for me to give you some insight on which products in the launch are worth it and which are not.
The Makeup by Mario launch includes three eyeshadow palettes (Master Mattes, Master Metals, and Master Metallics), a metal manipulator, three highlighters, a translucent gloss highlighter, three eye primers, brightening/pigment pencils, and makeup removing wipes. Currently, these products can only be purchased at Sephora or on the Makeup by Mario website.
While shopping for makeup in Sephora stores still has restrictions, such as not being able to test the products, you can always ask a beauty representative to help you sample them! I had a Sephora beauty representative swatch the palettes prior to purchasing them to help eliminate some of the risks associated with buying from a new beauty line. I ended up getting the three eyeshadow palettes, a liquid liner, and the metal manipulator to review for you guys.
Let's start this review off with the product packaging. Mario settled on a black and white, minimalistic packaging scheme for his makeup products. The box itself is all black with the text "MAKEUP BY MARIO" on the bottom right half. In the upper left, there is a description of the product box's content. Personally, I did not find the packaging to be anything spectacular. I felt like the text "MAKEUP BY MARIO" was spaced awkwardly, and the color scheme was bland, but I will give it kudos for having a clean, slender appearance.
The product itself follows the same black and white color scheme as the outer packaging but reversed. The products are all white in color with a small black "BY MARIO" text in the bottom right corner. The product description is located on the palette's backside, along with the names of the shades included. Here's where things get interesting.
The names of the shades are not unique or captivating. The shades' names are identical to the color associated with them. For example, on the Master Mattes eyeshadow palette, the shades' names include Matte 1, Matte 2, Matte 3, and continues up to Matte 12. While I can appreciate the palette's straightforwardness, I also found myself craving something to make it unique. After all, this is not the first matte- neutral-toned palette to be released. The naming scheme is similar to the Master Metallics Palette. The third palette was Master Metals. This palette's names were the actual colors included, such as 'silver,' 'gold,' 'copper,' 'bronze,' and 'rose gold.' The shade names on all three of these palettes are simplistic and to the point, just like the packaging. There seems to be a consistent theme here of minimalist simplicity, which prompts the question: Are the products themselves unnoteworthy?
The palette I was most excited about, and the first one I got into was Master Mattes. I am sure you guys know by now, but I have a real problem with neutral eyeshadows. I HAVE TO HAVE THEM ALL. I have an obsession with all things sparkle, but mattes also make me feel some type of way. The Makeup by Mario Master Mattes palette is a warm-toned
eyeshadow palette consisting of 12 matte shades that range from light to dark, with emphasis on browns. The palette's warm tones make it an optimal choice for those with olive, gold, or yellow undertones. Unfortunately, for those with pink undertones, you may find a more challenging time loving this palette. I have pink undertones, but I figured I would still give it a shot! The shadows themselves are very similar in color. The good news about this is it will make for a very smooth transition and seamless blend. The bad news is that you don't get a lot of variety. As for the pigments in the palette, they are effortless to blend. The colors are not saturated to the point where you get a rich sweep of color, but rather are very silky and buildable. The more product you put on your brush, the more color payout you are going to receive. This palette is SIMPLY stunning (pun intended). I would recommend this to anyone with WARM undertones and looking for some matte sultry shadows.
The next palette I opened was Master Metals. Again, we find ourselves looking at another warm-toned palette. However, this one appears to have far fewer colors in it.
Another component that sets this palette apart is the mixing tray included with it. This is because the colors are so saturated with iridescent pigment that you can use them as a creative eyeliner or a "mix-it-yourself" molten eyeshadow. How do you do this, you may ask? You do it by using his Master Metal Manipulator. This mixing liquid allows for the manipulation of the metal shadows into a long-wear liquid eyeliner or shadow. For more info on "how-to" with these products, Mario has a 'Learn' tab on his website that shows exactly how to do it. The concept of making your own liner using eyeshadow is something I wish had been introduced to the beauty community sooner because it is BRILLIANT. I know there are ways you can "DIY" eyeshadows into eyeliner. Still, I must say, it is nice having the ability to own a product that instantly liquefies your shadows for you AND makes them smudge-proof! 10/10 would recommend both the palette and the manipulator.
The last palette I opened was Master Metallics. This one I was skeptical about. The color story did not really speak to me. Personally, I've never found metallics to be all that alluring.
Still, I figured since I would review the other two eyeshadow palettes, I would also do this one! This palette includes a variety of 12 metallic colors. The colors range from golds to greens and coppers to purples. This palette has a ton of color! However, the colors are not my favorite. They appeared to be a bit random and only complementary to the other two colors in a column. When swatched, the shadows are very rich in color pay off. One swipe of the metallic shades across the lid is enough to create a molten luxury look. Are these the best metallics I've ever seen? Not by a long shot. Would they suit some people looking for earthy metallic shades? Absolutely. All things accounted for, I do not recommend this eyeshadow palette. I suggest you spend your money on something a little more noteworthy.
I am giving the eyeliner I purchased from the Makeup by Mario Line its own category. Why is this, you might ask? It is because of how DISAPPOINTED I was in this product. I thought that if anyone could combat the clean line that the Too Faced "Better Than Sex" eyeliner delivers, it would be Mario. However, I was wrong. Let's start with the packaging, shall we?
The packaging is the same black and white theme, as seen on the other products I reviewed. The outer box is black with white lettering, and the product itself is white with black lettering. No surprises there. The surprise comes when you open the cap, and the inside of it filled with product. I am talking about liquid liner everywhere. Let me tell you, there is nothing more off-putting than when you spend twenty-four dollars on a product that makes a complete mess when you open it. Another frustrating aspect was that the liner looks as if you pulled it straight from a Crayola marker box. I get that Mario is all for creativity, but I would prefer my makeup to be a separate entity from my coloring supplies.
While this may have been a one-off product failure, new product releases can have defects and kinks to work out as the product line matures. At this time, though, I do not recommend this product for purchase. I strongly suggest you stick to an established brand liner for the time being.
Let me wrap this all up by saying I have nothing but respect and admiration for Mario and his artistic abilities. I love his passion for his work and the story behind his beginnings. As for the first launch of his brand, I think there are some things he could work on, such as the packaging and more inclusive colors. Still, I also think he did a great job on the formulas and keeping a consistent presentation of the products. To make things easier for those of you who skipped down to the bottom of this post (I am aware it was a long post), here is the BUY and DO NOT BUY breakdown of the Makeup by Mario first product launch: