I bought a couple of the new YSL Pure Chromatics 4 Wet Dry Eyeshadows when they first came out a couple of months ago, but it took me a while to fully figure them out and start enjoying them. While wet/dry eye shadows are not exactly a new concept, in Pure Chromatics Yves Saint Laurent is offering a different texture, formula and applicator to get the most of the colors in these quads.
The basic idea is this: each set holds four shimmery eye shadows (the color combinations in some of the quads is more than a little questionable, but I just regard them as random shades not to be worn together). The shimmer and pigment varies in intensity, as you can see in No. 3. The light silvery blue is a pale wash of color when applied dry, and the brown ones are quite tame. Applied dry, all the shadows in this quad (and in #6, which I'll feature soon) are better off with a primer and give several options for flattering looks, alone or combined.
Things get tricky when you want to get the full effect of the chromatic formula and apply these YSL colors wet. A damp dense pencil brush sort of works for some of the colors and less so for others. The rubber applicator YSL provided is here for a reason. It's not just about using the shadows damp/wet. You want to bring the eye shadow to a paste-like consistency and then pack it on or contour the lid with it. There's a learning curve there, but when you get the texture exactly right the result is very impressive. Obviously, YSL Pure Chromatics 4 Wet Dry Eyeshadows can create editorial-worthy looks, but even those of us who need to leave the house and not scare small children can get a lot of use out No. 3, because applied responsibly, these colors are flattering (the blue ones are pretty on olive skin and brown eyes) and can give just the right amount of color/shine.
No. 3 is by far my favorite, but I'll also review No. 6 soon. Also, check out Best Things In Beauty for a review of the new summer colors.
Bottom Line: Not for newbies.
YSL Pure Chromatics 4 Wet & Dry Eyeshadows No. 3 ($48) is available from Yves Saint Laurent counters and yslbeautyus.com.
All photos are mine.