Sunday, March 9, 2014

Review: Miscellanious Fyrinnae Eyeshadows

I'm just going to go ahead and say up-front that I am generally pro-Fyrinnae. I'm generally going to recommend that you check out the brand, if you have not already done so.

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, I also need to let you know that I have a shitload of caveats to my pro-Fyrinnae stance. (Well... four. Four big caveats.) These will be addressed throughout the post, as relevant.


Gotta start us off with a big caveat: the buying experience!

Caveat #1: If you're unlucky, buying from Fyrinnae can be kind of a pain. 

I bought 18 Fyrinnae mini eyeshadows because I am a mini-eyeshadow kind of indie buyer. I want to fit as many colors into my cart as I can possibly justify. I had no hitches when I purchased and, indeed, I was pretty happy at their fast-as-fuck turnaround time. They tend to give a really long turnaround time on the website (so that there is no chance that you'll get your stuff later than promised), but I've purchased from them twice and both times my order showed on my doorstep within a week.

HOWEVER it's kind of a crapshoot whether or not purchasing from them will be an easy experience. The Fyrinnae website tends to close at random times without warning or explanation. Sometimes it's open, but it will only have a certain types of products listed. This isn't a new company (Fyrinnae opened in 2003. 2003 was a long time ago.) so it's strange that they haven't gotten their act together a little better. As I write this, Fyrinnae is closed. If you get your order in, though, they're reliable and will get you your stuff.

Note: There's also been some recent hullabaloo about some unprofessional tweets by one of Fyrinnae's formulators, Teir Connell, which you can read about here, if you're interested. Personally, I'm not upset about it. My guess is that the owners of Fyrinnae have been working really hard for a long time for not as much money as they might have hoped, hence the occasional grumpy tweets and random website shut-downs.

On to the eyeshadow! I have a mix of the regular shadows and the Arcane Magic shadows, which are the company's duochromes.

I also should probably explicitly point out, since I am showing you my open eyeshadow containers, that these are not new eyeshadows that I just bought two weeks ago. I bought these in August of 2013 and I have used them, like... a lot. So if you are looking at any of the shadows and thinking, "Wow, that looks really empty...", that's actually just because I love the eyeshadow and I use it a shitload. Every single eyeshadow in my pictures is heavily used, but some are more loved than others. I wanted to show the shadows open, though, so you can see the colors more easily.

As is my habit, I swatched my shadows on bare skin with no primer. However, I also swatched them over Fryinnae's Pixie Epoxy which I've previously written about here. This is because:

Caveat #2: Fyrinnae shadows really need a sticky base to shine (figuratively and literally). 

If you do not buy Pixie epoxy and you do not already own an acceptable Pixie Epoxy substitute, you're probably going to be disappointed with your Fyrinnae order. Without a sticky base, the they are, as a whole, quite sheer and the glitter gets lost.

Okay, but seriously. Eyeshadow pictures. It is time.

Round 1

From left to right: Electric Stardust, Chrome, Aye Captain, and Bitey Tyrannosaur

Electric Stardust (Arcane Magic) is a sparkly, cool-toned mint with a frosty finish. I'm not sure that I understand why this falls into the "Arcane Magic" range, since there isn't anything fancy going on, but I'm never one to turn down a nice mint-colored eyeshadow.

Chrome is a super metallic silver.

Aye, Captain is a shimmery chartreuse that kind of reminds me of what happened to the lawn when we left the slip-n-slide out for too long as a child.

Bitey Tyrannosaur is the color of a green apple-flavored candy with yellow and golden shimmer.

Swatches from left to right: Electric Stardust, Chrome, Aye Captain, and Bitey Tyrannosaur
Round 2

From left to right: Pyromantic Erotica, Cupcake Frosting, Conjuror, Sultry Samhain
Pyromantic Erotica (Arcane Magic) is bright, shimmery tangerine. Another one that doesn't really fit in the "Arcane Magic" category. The "obvious chartreuse highlight" that Fyrinnae describes sure as fuck ain't obvious to me.

Cupcake Frosting is a glittery pastel pink.

Conjuror (Arcane Magic) is a rusty red duochrome with teal shift.

Sultry Samhain (Arcane Magic) is bright burgundy with lighter, warm sparkles.

Swatches from  left to right: Pyromantic Erotica, Cupcake Frosting, Conjuror, Sultry Samhaim
Round 3

From left to right: Mystical Hedgehog, Parental Advisory, Polyester Witch, Alchemist's Curse, Glitterboi

Mystical Hedgehog (Arcane Magic) is a smokey, grayish purple. It's a duochrome with a moderate turquoise shift.

Parental Advisory is definitely my favorite out of all of these because it's such an in-your-face-royal blue-ish purple. If anyone wants to know my favorite color, Fyrinnae's Parental Advisory is my favorite color!

Polyester Witch is the color of my grandma's irises. It's a lilac color with lots of silver sparkle and a little bit of green sparkle.

Alchemist's Curse (Arcane Magic) is a black eyeshadow with pink glitter.

Glitterboi (Arcane Magic) is a black eyeshadow with purple, pink, and blue glitter.

Swatches from left to right: Mystical Hedgehog, Parental Advisory, Polyester Witch, Alchemist's Curse, Glitterboi
Round 4

From left to right: Are You My Mummy?, Pteranodon, Dark Fantasy, Mermaid Masquerade, Faerie Glamour

Are You My Mummy? (Arcane Magic) is a frosty forest green with teal sparkle. If you are very lucky, it can look a little lavender in the right light.

Pteranodon is a bright turquoise with hunks of silver glitter.

Dark Fantasy (Arcane Magic) is a black shadow with tons of grass-green shimmer. (Again, Fyrinnae is claiming a coral shift that I simply cannot find.)

Mermaid Masquerade (Arcane Magic) is a vibrant ocean blue.

Faerie Glamour (Arcane Magic) is a violet base with blue sparkle.

Swatches from left to right: Are You My Mummy?, Pteranodon, Dark Fantasy, Mermaid Masquerade, Faerie Glamour

After my Arcane Magic swatches, in particular, you may have noticed...

Caveat # 3: You seriously need to keep your expectations reasonable.

Fyrinnae sells itself as the most special eyeshadow out there. The eyeshadows are indisputably beautiful. But. But. BUT. Many of the alleged "shifts" in the Arcane Magic shadows are either impossible for me to find, or difficult for me to find and you have to get lucky with your light. Remember that Fyrinnae cannot actually give you magical eyeshadow, so be sure to adjust your expectations with that in mind. Some of the duochrome effects are much more obvious than others.

With that said, they are still all gorgeous as fuck.

Here are a few looks I've done recently with Fyrinnae eyeshadows:










Finally, we need to talk about cost.

Caveat #4: Fyrinnae's sizing is inconsistant.

The mini Arcane Magics cost $2.25 for 1/4 tsp and the mini regular shadows are $2.25 for 1/3 tsp.
The website is super vague about the size of the minis, stating that "the 1/3tsp mini size (does not fill jar) is about .4 to .7 gram in weight." That's a huge variation. 0.4g (0.014oz) would work out to be $160.71 per ounce, which is really, really expensive, even by non-indie standards. (For example, Paul and Joe's La Belle Epoque is comparable at $169.71 per ounce.) On the other hand, 0.7g/0.025oz would be only $90 per ounce: a million times more reasonable!

I weighed a few of the minis that I purchased and the Arcane Magics hovered around about 0.5g/0.018oz. If the owners were consistent, the mini regular eyeshadows would weigh 0.67g/0.023oz. However, the mean of my regular minis was less than this; closer to 0.6g/0.021oz.

If we use experimental rather than theoretical values, the minis will run you $125 per ounce for the Arcane Magic and $107.14 per ounce for the regular eyeshadows. This is a bit pricer, ounce per ounce, than the $100 per ounce ($3.50 for 0.035 oz) of the Shiro minis.

The website puts the full size shadows at "approximately" 3g (0.11oz). At $6.80 for the full size, that comes out to $61.82 per ounce. That's actually less expensive than Shiro's full size shadows, which are $71.43 per ounce. However, I wouldn't necessarily count on getting a better deal on these, since the owners of Fyrinnae are simply not as meticulous about weighing their shadows as the owner of Shiro, who is very consistent.

If you've read my caveats and aren't scared away, it's time to start refreshing the Fyrinnae webpage until they open their fucking store again. (Seriously. Scroll up and look at Parental Advisory again. Don't lie to yourself. You need that color.)

39 comments:

  1. Even when they've been open, it looks like the Pixie Epoxy has been consistently been out of stock. Can you recommend something similar?

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    Replies
    1. I have never personally tried it (sold out both times I placed an order), but Darling Girl's Glitter Glue is supposed to be a good alternative.

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    2. I've used both and like them equally. DG GG seems less sticky and has a thinner texture, but they both work in exactly the same way.

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  2. Oh wow, you have great skin in a bunch of those shots - the acne scarring on your right cheek/jawline is INVISIBLE. Great job!

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  3. Guess what's more annoying than trying to buy from Fyrinnae on a whim? Trying to buy the pressed eyeshadows. Even when they're open, they'll have like one in stock and the rest will be gone. So, I own one. Ideally, I'd probably own five by now. I also like the lip lustres...well, the two I've managed to buy.

    I like Pixie Epoxy...luckily, I'm usually too lazy to wear loose shadows at all, so the one tube I managed to buy will last a long time?

    I really don't get what's up with them. They make it very hard for people to throw money at them.

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    Replies
    1. I FEEL YOU. I would buy, like ten, if I could my grubby little hands on them.

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    2. I could not agree with you more. I've been trying to buy the pressed shadows since they came out!

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  4. I had just figured out a combination of their face powders that I really really liked and was going to buy full sized, and yeah. Sigh. (For the record, it is Hollywood Sorcery - super gorgeous, but too dark - plus Oil Control - always a good thing, and lightens things considerably).


    I guess I have been lucky in that whenever I have found the shop open, everything I wanted was in stock? I pretty much assumed the pressed eye shadows were not available, though.

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    Replies
    1. I haven't faced any issues save the MIA pressed shadows, but I know some people have been really frustrated with the site's stocking, especially recently.

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  5. I think the problem with Fyrinnae is that they are apparently SUPER-PICKY about the people they hire. Their products are awesome, but it cannot be denied that they are definitely a...finnicky company. It seems like they would rather be small, inconsistently open, and proud than operate below the standards they have set for themselves. (Which sucks especially when their standards include discontinuing things I want...)

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    Replies
    1. I think they could benefit from someone who would really handle the "business" side of things!

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  6. What lipstick are you wearing in the last photo?

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  7. All the colours looked amazing on you Robyn!

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  8. I just bought a sample blush, epoxy, and lip lustre. I didn't see a section for eye-shadow. I hour it doesn't really take 30 days (not including Sundays and holidays)

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    Replies
    1. I am sure it will not. I think they are pretty speedy. It is my understanding that they keep the TAT long just so there is no chance of a problem. (E.g. I know they get a huge number of orders whenever Temptalia reviews them, so I think they are preparing for stuff like that.)

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  9. i like when your picture alternate the direction in which you are facing. i dont know why.

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    Replies
    1. In that case, these are for you!

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  10. It's really petty but I find their site to be really obnoxious too. Like, the whole company seems to have a weird attitude about how their products are so different and so great without any of the actual decent business practices to back it up. Their turnaround time is almost a month, they're almost always closed, and when they are actually open, they frequently have almost half their product out of stock. I know their stuff is nice, but I'll probably never order from them. If a long-standing brick-and-mortar store behaved like that, I'd find somewhere else to get what I was looking for!

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, that's fair, especially when there are so many excellent indie companies out there. To me, they're still worth it, though, even with all the headaches.

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  11. I'm an occasional buyer. My favorite thing from them ever is my Bitey Tyrannosaur pressed shadow. I love the green, I love the name and if I could cuddle with it, I would do so.

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    Replies
    1. Fun! I'm glad you managed to get one of the pressed shadows. They are hard to come by!

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  12. Parental Advisory is my favourite colour too! Snap! :-) I also like the Farie Glamour kind of shade. By the way, the all-purple look you did? You are my hero.

    I've never bought anything from Fyrinnae - I want to (Parental Advisory, for starters!), but every time I go to their site it seems to be closed?

    I have to admit - I read through the whole tweet thing, and while I agree that they might just be frustrated about the amount they sell for how hard they work... if you close your website all the time and claim that you don't make business cards because you 'don't need to advertise'...then I feel like it's really your own fault if you don't sell as much as you'd like! Having loose PR cannons like Teir careering around Twitter doesn't help. When will people learn that just because you're 'indie' or make a decent product, it doesn't give you the green light to be an unprofessional ass? Twitter and Facebook and the like are really powerful marketing tools these days - but that also means that they come with the attendant risks: if you do something foolish because you didn't stop to think before you opened your mouth (or you don't care), the Internet will spread it around and remember it more or less forever.

    I will say though, that people often leave the most irritatingly passive-aggressive comments on cosmetic companies' FB/Twitter etc (like: 'So, I guess you're NOT going to answer my email then?!?'). From that point of view, I can understand the people at the companies getting frustrated with the tone, but professionalism means *not* responding in the same childish way, and actually trying to address the complaint/query.

    I still like the looks of Fyrinnae's product, but they do make it rather difficult to want to jump through all the hoops required to get it! :-P

    ReplyDelete
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    1. That's fair! I speculate that the issue isn't that they aren't selling enough, it's that each individual shadow is a lot of work for not a lot of money. So selling more just means you work super hard for a slightly higher pittance!

      Total guesswork, but that's what it looks like to me.

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    2. Hm, I see your point. I'm not really a businessperson (i.e. not at all), but I have to assume that if this is what is happening to you, then there is a problem with your business model.

      Maybe they just need to hire more people? Preferably someone who can create and maintain a usable website, and someone who can help with the production load. Either that or scale down and stop offering sample sizes etc? Increase the prices?

      Pardon my armchair economics/marketing :-P

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  13. Parental Advisory has been my favourite colour for quite some time ^_^ .

    And the purple look? FLAWLESS.

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  14. I placed an order today! No link to the eye shadows in the sidebar, but a google search brings up the direct link, which let me put things in my cart AND pay for them.

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    Replies
    1. Oh, tricky! Hopefully that works okay and they don't cancel your order due to sneakiness. ;)

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    2. My vague recollection is that I did the exact same thing with my last order, so we shall see!

      I kind of like supporting them because they are within 30 miles or so of my Seattle suburb home, but I tend to buy the vast majority of my loose shadows from Sweet Libertine because she was one of my imaginary friends from the internets well before she started her company (with her $300 economic stimulus check from the government! And now it supports her and her husband, which is super-awesome).

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    3. My order arrived today, with eye shadows. So, sneakiness paid off.

      Delete
  15. I love Fyrinnae, and have a very special love for Conjuror and Velvet Vampire. That said... how the hell do you blend them when Pixie Epoxy comes into play? I tend to use my shadows to complement a more neutral base (creams and beiges, etc.), and it seems like once I break out the tube of epoxy, blending gets thrown out the window.

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    Replies
    1. Even though I put my primer all over the place, I keep Pixie Epoxy only on my lid, which seems to help prevent too many blending mishaps.

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  16. 1.) UD N3's "Dust" + pixie epoxy = everything that was wrong with that shadow magically disappears.

    2.) I received a free sample of "serendipity", my favorite color, in my last order from them, which I happily combined with the mini I already owned - and it was considerably lighter and less red than the one I had, and the two were received within weeks of each other. So there are definite inconsistencies in their formula between batches, which might be another caveat.

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  17. I AM IN LOVE WITH THAT PURPLE LOOK. It's so gorgeous. The look on the last picture is pretty impressive too! Also, I think you should start listing what products you used under each picture; I always find myself wondering what eyeshadow shades, lipcolor and blush you're wearing!

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  18. I have just purchased my first order from fyrianne, for delivery to the UK.
    I was so excited, virtually camped out by the post box waiting for my 14 eyeshadows and Pixie Epoxy to arrive. BUT, boy was I disappointed.

    Firstly the attitude displayed by Fyrianne staff in response to a question about additional shipping charges was obnoxious and dismissive to say the least!
    But, rising above that, because as a true make up junkie and beauty professional, I REALLY wanted to believe the hype, I paid the extra fees and collected my order.

    Firstly, the one I'd been most excited to get my hands on as it appeared to be so unique, Mephisto. Well, I played around with this one a lot before putting it anywhere near my eyes, but whatever I tried, with/without primer and PE I ended up with a ridiculous amount of the blackened navy base radiating around the edges.Eventually I braved it on my lids, and looked like I'd been punched in the face!!!

    So, still desperate to love this brand and be a UK trailblazer,I tried again today with dressed to kill over UD Primer. Fabulous, much better look, but just 4 hours later I was left with just a sludgy coloured green mess around my eyes! No staying power at all.

    These products are no more unique in shade, and definitely much poorer in quality, than certain drug store brands I have used, particularly the fabulous sleek idivine palettes.

    However, for duochromes, I'll definitely be paying the extra to stick with my usual Urban Decay in future.

    Sorry fyrianne, but there's too much competition out there nowadays for anyone to bother giving below par products, and atrocious customer service a second chance.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I have just purchased my first order from fyrianne, for delivery to the UK.
    I was so excited, virtually camped out by the post box waiting for my 14 eyeshadows and Pixie Epoxy to arrive. BUT, boy was I disappointed.

    Firstly the attitude displayed by Fyrianne staff in response to a question about additional shipping charges was obnoxious and dismissive to say the least!
    But, rising above that, because as a true make up junkie and beauty professional, I REALLY wanted to believe the hype, I paid the extra fees and collected my order.

    Firstly, the one I'd been most excited to get my hands on as it appeared to be so unique, Mephisto. Well, I played around with this one a lot before putting it anywhere near my eyes, but whatever I tried, with/without primer and PE I ended up with a ridiculous amount of the blackened navy base radiating around the edges.Eventually I braved it on my lids, and looked like I'd been punched in the face!!!

    So, still desperate to love this brand and be a UK trailblazer,I tried again today with dressed to kill over UD Primer. Fabulous, much better look, but just 4 hours later I was left with just a sludgy coloured green mess around my eyes! No staying power at all.

    These products are no more unique in shade, and definitely much poorer in quality, than certain drug store brands I have used, particularly the fabulous sleek idivine palettes.

    However, for duochromes, I'll definitely be paying the extra to stick with my usual Urban Decay in future.

    Sorry fyrianne, but there's too much competition out there nowadays for anyone to bother giving below par products, and atrocious customer service a second chance.

    ReplyDelete

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