Every once in a while, I am introduced to a product or an independent brand that completely blows me away with their quality and creativity. The lovely Imogen recently introduced me to such a brand. Shiro Cosmetics is a 100% vegan, cruelty-free cosmetics company with eye shadows, lip colors, blushes, bronzers, and powders inspired by video games, television shows (the “Seven Kingdoms/Game of Thrones” collection looks gorgeous,) internet memes, and so on. Swatches shown on the site look rich and highly pigmented, and the price points are completely reasonable and affordable.
With actor Nicolas Cage’s 50th birthday taking place earlier this month, Shiro released a lip gloss collection depicting him in five different eras of American history. With names like “Nic Cage Churning Butter One Crisp Thanksgiving Morn” and “Nic Cage Doing the Charleston in a Bustling Speakeasy,” I couldn’t resist- and I ordered the whole set of five full-sized glosses for $35.
My package arrived shortly thereafter and included candy and a couple of eye shadow samples, “When the Thrush Knocks” from the “Hobbit” Collection, and “Gift of Mercy” from the GoT collection. Reviews of those can be found further down in this post!
Gloss # 1: “Nic Cage Churning Butter One Crisp Thanksgiving Morn”
“April showers bring May flowers. Mayflowers bring Nic Cage?
A gorgeous nude color, slightly on the sheerer side of medium coverage. We like to think of it as “Nicolas Beige.” Flavored like yummy honey! (vegan substitute, not the bees)” – (LINK)
I loved this sweet-scented nude color. It was very subtle on my lips- perfect for everyday wear. I think this is going to be my go-to for work or when I want a hint of shine without a ton of color.
Gloss # 2: “Nic Cage Nibbling Petit Fours in a Posh Victorian Tearoom”
“A Victorian tearoom is not to be confused with a Nictorian tearoom, which, rather than being an elegant tea-taking experience, is actually just a terrible pun for which I am very ashamed.
Moderately opaque dusty rose with a gentle pearl finish. Flavored with fancy pink frosting!” – (LINK)
Out of all the glosses, this one was my favorite scented and the closest match to the lip colors I typically wear. It’s a lovely rose shade that compliments my skin tone perfectly.
Gloss # 3: “Nic Cage Posing for a Calendar with Shiny Bright Red Cars”
“It’s a little known fact that National Treasure’s “Book of Secrets” actually referred to an extensive collection of Nic Cage’s glamorous pin-up shoots. The film, alas, took many creative liberties and covered up the whole thing.
Moderately opaque bright sports-car red, with a subtle pearl finish. Flavored like fresh cherry pie!” – (LINK)
Ever a fan of bright, cherry red lips- this gloss was one of my favorites in the set. It gave me a great pop of dramatic color and a beautiful shine. This looks great by itself, or over a red lipstick for extra “oomph!”
Gloss # 4: “Nic Cage Doing the Charleston in a Bustling Speakeasy”
“Won’t you Cageston with me?/And while the band is playing that/Nicolas Cage, around we will rage/Together we’ll show them/How the Cageston is done/We’ll surprise everyone!”
Moderately opaque fuchsia-mulberry. Will leave behind a faint stain. Flavored like bubbly champagne!” – (LINK)
I wore this plummy/wine colored gloss out to dinner with my girlfriends over the weekend, and like the description says, it does stain your lips- which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. After an appetizer, an entree, a dessert, and coffee- my lips still looked full and dramatic.
Gloss # 5: “Nic Cage Getting Funky with that Saturday Night Fever”
“The invention of the disco ball came about one night after Nic Cage, at the tender age of five, accidentally sat on a mirror. The shards stuck to his bum and reflected the lasers which happened to be around, throwing off glorious scatterings of multicolored light which made everyone want to dance. Unfortunately, the name “Nicso ball” did not stick.
Super sheer purple with bright orange sparkle. Flavored like grape candy, Lip Smackers style!” – (LINK)
Although this gloss appears dark purple in the tube, it applied as a very pretty lavender/pink on my lips. The only downside to this particular gloss was the scent. I’m not a fan of grape-flavored anything, really- so when I applied this for the first time, all it reminded me of was children’s cough syrup/Tylenol.
These glosses gave a good amount of color and a beautiful shine. While you shouldn’t expect all-day wear with these (they aren’t lipsticks, after all,) the longevity is pretty impressive. I only had to re-apply a couple of times throughout the day as opposed to every hour, on the hour- which means I’m getting my money’s worth and not wasting any of the product (or my cash.)
I would like to point out that although the descriptions list these glosses as being flavored- they don’t have a taste- which is fine with me since I have a habit of compulsively licking anything flavored off my lips, anyway. These smell spot-on and absolutely delicious, though (except for the grape one, but that’s just personal preference!) and that’s just as good.
Overall I’m really pleased with this set. These glosses were a lot of fun to try and I’m excited to integrate them into my makeup collection. Plus, when someone asks what I’m wearing- saying the name of the color and showing off the hilariously decorated tube has been wildly entertaining.
Of course, I wanted to try the eye shadow samples, too:
Sample # 1: “Gift of Mercy”
“Maybe some real wolves will find you. Maybe they’ll smell you when the sun goes down. Then you’ll learn what wolves do to dogs.
Blackened plate-steel grey shot through with hints of orange fire. Lip-safe!” – (LINK)
I can’t get over how much I loved this color. While the loose shadow appeared jet black in the packet, which was admittedly a little intimidating to me, it applied on my lids as a really gorgeous dark grey with flecks of copper. This is PERFECT to create a unique smokey eye. In the photo above, I’ve applied “Gift of Mercy” over Urban Decay’s Primer Potion. No other colors were added/used.
Sample # 2: “When The Thrush Knocks”
“Then suddenly when their hope was lowest a red ray of the sun escaped like a finger through a rent in the cloud. A gleam of light came straight through the opening into the bay and fell on the smooth rock-face. The old thrush, who had been watching from a high perch with beady eyes and head cocked on one side, gave a sudden trill. There was a loud crack. A flake of rock split from the wall and fell.” – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
Late afternoon sunlight: soft coppery yellow-gold with light shimmer. Lip-safe!” – (LINK)
Another beautiful, shimmery (but not TOO shimmery) copper tone. This applied beautifully and brought out the blue in my eyes. In the photo above, I’ve applied “When The Thrush Knocks” over Urban Decay’s Primer Potion. No other colors were added/used.
Just when I thought I couldn’t enjoy anything more than the Nicolas Cage lip glosses, these shadow samples completely blew me away. Like the swatches on Shiro’s website suggested- these loose shadows are highly pigmented. Even better? They didn’t budge. At ALL. The shadows stayed in place, just as I applied them, without creasing, flaking, fading, or becoming discolored as the day wore on. I was so, so impressed.
Consider me a life-long fan and customer of Shiro Cosmetics. I’m absolutely smitten with the entire line- from their wide array of colors and finishes to their clever names, descriptions, and packaging. I’m already picking out things for my next order- which will include a Dr. Who-inspired TARDIS blue eye shadow, among many other things.