I've seen a few reviews for this product and they've been overwhelmingly negative. I do smoky eyes so rarely because I don't feel confident with dark shadows so this really appealed to me. A two-step, one product smoky eye? Where do I sign?! So regardless of the negative reviews I was drawn to the Maybelline counter to give this baby a swatch.
There was a few colours to choose from, all very imaginatively named smoky "insert colour." In my dreams this would have been a dark jungle green but the violet seemed like the next best thing. Bright enough to be considered colourful and the shade would ideally enhance the green tones in my eyes. The product itself is a chunky crayon encased in wood with a sponge "smudger" on the opposite end. It does come with lids on both ends but I'll explain why mine doesn't at the end of the post. Nothing innovative packaging wise, but nice and neat. I also liked that the colour of the pencil was an indicator of the product shade. I much prefer products presented like that because when you have a lot of makeup you can spend several minutes just trying to find the products you're after. Buzzkill. Here's a swatch on my hand:
I did really love this look though. It's a little muddy on the lid but it would make a great addition to some dark purple shadows and absolutely does work fine on it's own. It's quite "safe" as far as smoky eyes go as a single product, but I'm really looking forward to having a play and seeing what I can achieve! It was fairly soft but it did drag a little on the skin. Not terrible but perhaps enough to irritate very sensitive eyes. The pigmentation is fantastic and I love the colour! It's not obvious from the photos but my eyes looked very green in reality. The smudger wasn't half as bad as I imagined it would be from other reviews, I felt it did the job quite well to be honest. These retail for £5.99 each at Boots or Superdrug. There's also a mascara in the "Smoky" range but I really don't feel it could do anything more than what any other volumising mascara could, so it was a miss for me. I did quite like this product and might pick up the brown shade too.
Final verdict: It's not a must-have product, but it's a nice addition to my liners and I'll probably reach for it a few times in the coming evenings.
What do you think to this product? Have you tried any pieces from the Smoky collection?
P.S. The story behind the missing lid: I was about to pay for my full price Smoky Violet when the assistant whipped one out with a missing lid and offered it to me for £1 since they couldn't sell it for full price. Needless to say I didn't dither for long. £5 is a big saving, and I store my pencils upright anyway so it's not as if the sponge is going to gather dirt in the bottom of my makeup bag. Hell yeah savings!