Review: Maybelline | Color Tattoo Eyeshadow

Hailed as one of the biggest breakthrough drugstore products last year, the Maybelline Colour Tattoo eye shadows have truly redefined our perceptions of drugstore beauty. During my novice years in makeup when drugstore was the most accessible (and affordable), I often found myself stuck in the eyeshadow section with few options to choose from. Cream shadows were even rarer to come by, making temporary appearances from time to time but in the end never gaining enough popularity to stay on the shelves for long.

Maybelline Colour Tattoo_01
Brand: Maybelline New York
Product: Colour Tattoo 24hr Eyeshadow
Shades: Original 9 shades, Metals 5 shades
Size: 4 grams
Price: $7-10CAD
Availability: Drugstore
Would I repurchase: Yes, likely.

These Maybelline pots bursted onto the beauty scene with some bold claims to its name, 24hr wear, a creme gel formula and a daring selection of shades including a bright tangerine and a matte taupe, all things I associated with high end products (and also high price tags). The eye shadows come in solid glass pots, clear at the bottom so you can easily see the shade you  have in hand. The colour selection tend to be on the satin or metallic side with only a few matte choices. There has since been released a “Metal” collection, which is really just an introduction of new shades rather than finishes since many of the originals are already metallic.

Maybelline Colour Tattoo_02
Perhaps you are like me and wondered why these are labeled as “creme gels” versus the more popular “gel creme” descriptions of most cream eyeshadows. Looking at the product in the pot, they appear to be quite solid (no amount of upside down shaking will dislodge it from the container) and even a bit dry when you put a finger to the surface but upon warming it slightly the dense creme transforms into a creme gel consistency. Once on the eyes, you have to work quickly before it sets into a film of colour on the skin. These are best applied in thin layers to achieved the desired effect instead of one heavy later, be it a sheer wash you are after or something more intense. Beware that these don’t layer well at all with other cream products once set, I learned this the hard way. When dried and set they leave absolutely no moistness and is completely dry to the the touch, perfect for layer powders on top without the fear of getting patchy.
Maybelline Colour Tattoo_03
Through out the months, I have collected 6 colours ranging from both the Original and the Metals series. Pigmentation is consistent through the various shades, being light to medium in one stroke and certainly buildable to achieve more opacity. A few shades, like Inked in Pink and Bad to the Bronze swatched surprisingly different than they appeared in the pot so do test the shades in the shops first if you can.

The most pressing question left is that of the 24hr wear claim because let’s face it, cream shadows are infamous for creasing and smudging. I’d say that these Maybelline ones last most of the day for causal daily wear but won’t hold up against a workout or other steamy sweaty situations, they will crease albeit much less so than most cream shadows. So unless you are going to be doing nothing but sitting pretty in an air conditioned room for 24hrs then claim is a bit far fetched in my opinion but none the less I think for a drugstore product they perform superbly well overall and is the best I’ve come across in this category thus far.

Those who’ve been with me for some time know that I am faithfully devoted to my (single) MAC paintpot in Groundwork, a medium matte brown that I use almost every time I wear makeup. In comparison, I do prefer the creamier texture of the MAC (Maybelline feels very dry initially) and the fact that it is easier to blend over the eye because of that, giving me more time to work with the product. Wear time is quite similar with the paintpot edging out by a few hours more but both are enough for an average 9-5 day. I’m just hoping that Maybelline will release a matte series so there will be more to love for days I’m not feeling all sparkly.

Maybelline Colour Tattoo_04
Ingredients: General list (will vary slightly depending on the shade)
Cyclopentasiloxane, Isododecane, Polypropylsilsesquioxane, Ceresin, Cyclohexasiloxane, Caprylyl Methicone, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Alumina, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Cyclomethicone, Propylene Carbonate, Candelilla Cera / Candelilla Wax / Cire De Candelilla, Caprylyl Glycol, C30-45 Alkyldimethylsilyl Polypropylsilsesquioxane, Calcium Sodium Borosilicate, Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Silica, Polyethylene Terephthalate, Tin Oxide, Acrylates Copolymer, Paraffin. May Contain: Mica, CI 77891 / Titanium Dioxide, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499 / Iron Oxides, CI 77007 / Ultramarines, CI 19140 / Yellow 5 Lake, CI 16035 / Red 40 Lake, CI 77000 / Aluminum Powder, CI 77510 / Ferric Ferrocyanide, CI 75470 / Carmine, CI 42090 / Blue 1 Lake, CI 77400 / Bronze Powder, CI 77288 / Chromium Oxide Greens, CI 77289 / Chromium Hydroxide Green, CI 77742 / Manganese Violet, CI 77400 / Copper Powder, CI 77163 / Bismuth Oxychloride, CI 77510 / Ferric Ammonium Ferrocyanide.

6 thoughts on “Review: Maybelline | Color Tattoo Eyeshadow

  1. Sara says:

    Love these cream shadows the only problem I found with a few of them is they dried out way quicker then my Paint Pots. Maybe because they are opened and used more often:)Sara xx


  2. Jennifer Chung says:

    I, myself, have two of the Maybelline Tattoos. I find that the texture / quality differ between shades. I have 'Rich Mahogany', which was limited edition, and it comes out dry and splotchy, but my 'Inked in Pink' was much more creamier and applies much nicer. But since I don't own a Mac one, I can't compare. I've also heard that if you store them upside down (colour facing up) it will last much longer and won't dry out as fast. Jen


  3. noire says:

    I went on a day trip last year and put Tough as Taupe to the ultimate test because I had it on my eyes for over 24 hours. It lasted (with eyeshadow on top) in good spirits for 12 hours, then it started to crease. But then my lids are super oily, so for me the staying power was amazing. I don't really remove my makeup for working out (I do it right after work) and they last thoughout it all without budging (and I sweat a lot!) but I always use eyeshadow with them, I can't really say if they would last that long without a powder on top.Thanks a lot for the review and swatches, Inked Pink looks lovely on the swatch but not so much on the pot which is why I initially passed on it. Can't wait to try Barely Branded, I bet it's the perfect base for colourful eyeshadows ^^ xx


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