Monday, September 15, 2014

Product Review & Comparison: Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit vs. City Color Contour Effects

Today, I bring you a comparison post between the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit and 
City Color Contour Effects. I have seen loads of hype about these products and I really wanted to see if they were worth the hype.

Right away you can tell that the pan sizes of the City Color Contour Effects is larger than those in the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit, but you are receiving 3 additional shades in the latter. The City Color Contour Effects only comes with one shade of highlighter whereas the Anastasia Contour Kit comes with three. The Anastasia Contour Kit has shades which can be popped in and out of the palette by the little finger-dip zone to the bottom right of each color. This is so handy since Anastasia Beverly Hills now sells refills and you can build your own palette if you want.

You can tell from my photo that I have gotten quite a lot of use out of this palette in just a few weeks of owning it. I have also made a concerted effort to use drugstore-quality contours and bronzers since this is a high-end option I don't want to have to repurchase refills for in merely a few months.

I mix Vanilla and Banana for the perfect lighting for my face (I do have to point out that my skin is more yellow than pink-toned, so this may be a contributing factor as to why this works so well for me). I use Sand as a pop of shimmer above my cheeks and on my cupid's bow as it does reflect the light beautifully. 

Fawn is the perfect contour transition shade. This works the same way on your face as a transition shade would above your eye crease - it blurs out and essentially makes your face look Photoshop-flawless as opposed to giving you a harsh bronzer or contour line. I use Java to warm up my skin-tone as a bronzer and as the contour shade on days I'm looking for less definition. If I want more distinct definition, I usually use Havana specifically for under my jawline and to lift my cheekbones.

You can see in the swatches that all of these shades are very pigmented and it really doesn't take a lot of layering to get the desired tone. The colors are also not so highly saturated with pigment that they are hard to work with - in my opinion, they are the perfect fine-milled face powders. It is very easy to achieve a "blown out" look with all of the shades and Fawn is an absolute holy grail since it is taupe-leaning and cool contour shades are rather difficult to come across.

The City Color Contour Effects palette consists of 3 shades: Contour, Bronze and Highlight, as well as a guide instructing how to use the shades. Each person's face is slightly different and may need definition in places another person's may not, so always use these guides at your discretion. Remember, you know your face best and makeup is all about having fun with creativity :)!

The texture of the powders is harder in this palette than in the Anastasia Contour Kit, but the shades are highly pigmented. They are so pigmented in fact that you have to be careful not to pick up too much of any shade on your brush. You can see that the Highlight is a stark white shade, Bronze is an orange-leaning bronzing shade, and Contour is a medium-dark brown.

When I apply these colors to my face, I have to use a light hand because it can get out of hand and I can start to look like an awful Kim Kardashian wannabe very quickly. Contour is too dark for my fair skin-tone, this may work better if you are of medium to dark complexion. I can only use this shade lightly underneath my jawbone (since that's probably the place least seen). I am more likely to use the Bronze in this kit as my contour, but since this orange-leaning, it is a little Oompa Loompa for my taste. Also, I applied the Highlight shade to highlight my nose, forehead and cheeks, when I went out during the daylight, even though I had blended the powder, it was a very bright white on my face. So again, this isn't a subtle palette, not for those who like natural contouring and highlight nor those who use their brushes more aggressively in powder.

Here is a comparison swatch line-up so you can see all of the colors side-by-side. You can see that Highlight is much lighter than Vanilla, Banana, and Sand (Vanilla and Sand are much more beige). You can also tell quite easily that Contour is the darkest shade in both palettes by at least 2-3 shades. Bronze is a more orange-toned version of Java

All things considered, I really do think you are better off purchasing the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit, specifically if you are of a fair or light complexion. I really only see the City Color Contour Effects
working for medium to dark warm-toned complexions. Seeing as I have already purchased this, I will try to give it a whirl when I'm more tan.

Do you own either of these? What do you think?

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