When I first heard that Aromaleigh’s Halloween collection was going to be based on poisonous and venomous deadly things, I was slightly intrigued. When I saw the swatch photos that were posted on the Facebook page (they are now posted on Aromaleigh’s website) I was completely agog. So naturally, I placed an order for teensy tiny itty bitty little samples (seriously, 1/16 of a teaspoon is teeniny). And once I started wearing said samples I totally fell in love with the actual theme. I’ve completely loved googling the names of these shadows and learning about their namesakes. I mean, the shadows are really pretty, but bugs! And plants! And creepy crawly things! This is going to be a long post. Like longer than normal. So hunker down with a protein shake (did you know that GNC has a pumpkin spice protein shake that actually bears a striking resemblance to the actual flavor of pumpkin pie? It’s delightful.) and lets look at some glittery goodies and some fascinating flora and fauna.
I swatched these in two batches, the first batch consists of the shades I really thought I would love the most and thus, was most excited to swatch:
I can’t remember now why I didn’t label the eyeshadows on some of these photos. That’s going to bother me a bit. Moving on…
Phoneutria nigriventer (Brazilian Wandering Spider):
Phoneutria is ancient Greek for “Murderess”, nigriventer is Latin for “black bellied”. “Phoneutria has probably the worst reputation among the araneomorph spiders. In almost every published text, even in some non-fiction books covering this subject, they are described as “extremely dangerous”, “extremely aggressive” and “(most-) toxic”, “highly venomous”, or just “deadly”. There are also dozens of “true” field reports giving the impression that these spiders must be the pure evil. ” (Source: Wandering-spiders.net)
Color Description: One of the more neutral shades of the Fatalis collection, but still dramatic! It has a black base with strong color travel from gold to bronze and even possibility of aqua to blue.- depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
Definitely neutral. It is a warm leaning taupe kind of shade that will occasionally have a slightly more blue or green cast to it.
Atropa belladonna (Deadly Nighshade)
Scientific name: Atropa belladonna
Atropa: Derived from the Greek Atropos, one of the Fates who held the shears to cut the thread of human life.
belladonna: Italian for “beautiful woman”, a reference to the use of the plant to enhance beauty.
“Atropa belladonna is a Eurasian perennial with reddish, bell-shaped flowers that bear glossy-coated, black berries. Other names for the plant include belladonna, deadly nightshade, devil’s berries, naughty man’s cherries, death cherries, beautiful death, and devil’s herb. The plant earns its sinister nicknames, as its foliage and berries are extremely toxic, containing potent dosages of tropane alkaloids. Its most common name, belladonna, derives from Italian, meaning “beautiful woman.” Historically, women have used the herb’s oil to dilate and enlarge the pupils for seductive effect. But it’s best known as the plant of choice for assassins through history.” (SOURCE: Slate)
Color Description: This shade has a medium-deep purply mauve base which flashes to reddish pink and violet – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
I would say that the website description is quite accurate with the exception of calling this “deep”. I didn’t find that any of these shadows are “deep” or dark no matter how I applied them. That being said, I wasn’t super crazy about this shade (I know! I was surprised too! I mean, it’s PURPLE!) but it does do something really nice for my eye color. That’s true of a LOT of these shadows, they make my eye color really look awesome.
Amanita Muscaria (Fly amanita)
Fly agaric was first described by Carl Linnaeus (Swedish botanist and the father of modern taxonomy) in 1753, as Agaricus muscarius, the epithet deriving from the Latin ‘musca’, or ‘fly’, apparently referring to its use in parts of Europe as an insecticide, crushed in milk for attracting and killing flies. Amanita refers to Ancient Greek Amanitai, meaning “fungus”. It is amongst the most iconic of the toadstools, commonly depicted in children’s books and on Christmas cards around the world. It is highly distinctive and, at least when fresh and in good condition, can hardly be confused with any other species. Its hallucinogenic properties have been well-known for centuries and the species has a long history of use in religious and shamanistic rituals, especially in Siberia. It is a common and widespread fungus, native to much of the north-temperate world.(Source: Kew.org)
Color Description: This shade is inspired by the warm reddish to golden tones of the Fly Agaric mushroom. It has a warm red base and strong gold to chartreuse color travel. You may also see aqua – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view
I get mostly an orange, peachy kind of shade with aqua sparkles. It’s undoubtedly pretty but not what I was expecting. That being said, I did like this one enough to order a slightly larger sample.
Dendroaspis polylepis (Black Mamba)
The name Dendroaspis is derived from Ancient Greek Dendro, which means”tree”, and aspis or “asp”, which denotes “cobra” or simply “snake”, while polylepis means “many scales”.
“The black mamba has quite a reputation. It is one of the world’s deadliest snakes. It is the fastest land snake in the world, and “the longest species of venomous snake in Africa and the second longest in the world,” said Sara Viernum, a herpetologist based in Madison, Wisconsin. This snake’s potential danger has been the subject of many African myths and it has been blamed for thousands of human deaths. Just two drops of potent black mamba venom can kill a human, according to South Africa’s Kruger National Park. “Like cobras and coral snakes, the venom of a black mamba contains neurotoxins,” Viernum told Live Science. She described the venom as “fast-acting.” It shuts down the nervous system and paralyzes victims, and without antivenom, the fatality rate from a black mamba bite is 100 percent. ” (SOURCE: LiveScience)
Color Description: This shade is inspired by the black mamba snake. While the snake is markedly grey tones, I saw a lot of pictures where the scales had a pinkish/violet tinge, and some shots of the inside of the snake’s mouth as it strikes. This is where I took my color inspiration. This one has a more delicate shift, as it’s a neutral greyed/cocoa base with the copper to rose to violet shift.- depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
This is a soft glowy mauve type shade. I wasn’t wild about it but it grew on me as the day went on. It’s pretty if not the most unique shade in the bunch.
Nerium Oleander (Oleander)
Nerium- Believed to come from the Greek ‘nerion’ which is, itself, believed to be based on ‘neros’, ‘wet’ or ‘fresh’. Oleander- Possibly a combination of the Latin ‘olea’, ‘olive’ and ‘rodandrum’, ‘rhododendron’ meaning the plant looks somewhat similar to a cross between these two. “Nerium oleander is a highly toxic ornamental shrub widely cultivated in the Mediterranean. It has been grown since ancient times and features in many of the Roman wall paintings in Pompeii. Alexander the Great in his military campaigns is said to have lost men as a result of eating meat skewered on highly poisonous Nerium twigs. Nerium oleander is widely cultivated as an ornamental shrub or as an informal hedge in warm-temperate and dry subtropical regions, and as a plant for the conservatory in cooler climates. Oleander is highly poisonous to humans, pets, livestock and birds due to the presence of cardiac glycosides, mainly oleandrin. Ingestion causes nausea, vomiting, cardiac arrhythmias, hypotension (low blood pressure) and death. Its sap has been used as rat poison.” (SOURCE: KEW)
Color Description: This shade has a vivid pink base that shifts to green and teal and occasionally a tinge of violet – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
I would say that this has little shift involved. It reads to me as a bright pink with green and teal sparkles. It’s a definite glitter bomb.
And here are the shades that I ended up loving the most:
Phyllobates terribilis (Golden poison frog)
The name Phyllobates is Latin for “leaf climber”, while terribilis is “terrible”. The golden poison dart frog is considered one of the most toxic animals on Earth. A single specimen measuring two inches (five centimeters) has enough venom to kill ten grown men. Indigenous Emberá people of Colombia have used its powerful venom for centuries to tip their blowgun darts when hunting, hence the species’ name. Scientists are unsure of the source of this frog’s amazing toxicity, but it is possible they assimilate plant poisons, which are carried by their prey. Poison dart frogs raised in captivity and isolated from insects in their native habitat never develop venom. (Source: National Geographic)
Color Description: This shade is inspired by shade range of the golden poison dart frogs. It has a warm green base and shifts of vivid gold to orange to reddish. You might even see a pop of violet – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view
I didn’t think this looked like the most interesting shade on the website but it’s really lovely in person. My photos do it no justice. It has such a soft subtle glowy shift from a pinky copper to that dirty golden color. It’s beautiful.
Helleborous niger (Christmas rose)
Helleborus. Believed to come from the Greek ‘ellos/hellos’, ‘fawn’ and ‘bora’, ‘food’, thus, food for a fawn, and “niger”, meaning black- as pertaining to the color of the plant’s roots. In Europe Helleborus niger is considered one of the most traditional and noble flowering plants of the Winter season. The knowledge of the powerful toxicity or rather the medicinal potential of Christmas rose goes back to the Middle Ages, when it was extensively used by herbalists, and even to earlier times. Theophrastus (Greek philosopher, c. 372-287 BC., “the father of Botany”) and Dioscorides (Greek physician, 1st century AD., author of De Materia Medica) have mentioned Christmas rose in their works. Pliny has mentioned the use of H. niger as early as in 1400 BC. by a soothsayer and physician Melampus, after whom the plant has sometimes been referred to as “melampode”. (SOURCE: Cornell University)
Color Description: This color has a has a purplish taupe base and shifts to gold and chartreuse and aqua – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
That’s quite the color description right? And the swatches on the website are insane! I got a mostly silvery taupe color with really faint and occasional green or gold undertones but no actual shift.
Hapachlaena lunulata (Greater blue-ringed octopus)
Hapalochlaena: Latin for “soft-skinned”, lunulata: Latin for “little moons” The greater blue-ringed octopus likes shallow waters with mixed seabed (rubble, reefs, sandy areas …). Like all octopuses, it lives in a burrow and only comes out to search for food or a mate. The entrance of the shelter is littered with legs from meals (empty shells and crab shell and legs) and it’s quite easily identifiable.The greater blue-ringed octopus is widespread trough out the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indo-West Pacific from Sri Lanka to the Philippines and from Australia to south Japan. Even if the greater blue-ringed octopus looks calm and docile, it nevertheless remains capable of inflicting a deadly bite to its predators which can even be fatal to humans. Octopuses from genus Hapalochlaena have two kinds of venom glands which impregnate their saliva. One is used to immobilize the hunted crustaceans before eating them. The second one as a defense purpose which venom toxin is named maculotoxin. This toxin is a powerfull neurotoxin with a strong paralyzing power. Its effects are similar to the tetrodotoxin. (Source: Wikipedia)
Color Description: This shade is intensely color traveling and will look different in just about every type of lighting condition, ranging from cocoa/copper to shifts of teal, chartreuse and even violet – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
This is the photo from the website that really inspired me to purchase this collection. This really looks nothing like the photos on the site in real life. That being said, this is my favorite. It is a neutral with a twist and it just glows. It’s really really pretty. I get a nude brown base with a bright blue (but still subtle and intriguing) shift. I don’t really see any of the other shades listed in the site description.
Leiurus quinquestriatus (Deathstalker scorpion)
“The deathstalker (Leiurus quinquestriatus), is a species of scorpion, a member of the Buthidae family. It is also known as the Israeli yellow scorpion, Palestine yellow scorpion, Omdurman scorpion, Naqab desert scorpionand many other colloquial names, which generally originate from the commercial captive trade of the animal. To eliminate confusion, especially important with potentially dangerous species, the scientific name is normally used to refer to them. The name Leiurus quinquestriatus roughly translates into English as “five-striped smooth-tail”. The deathstalker is regarded as the most dangerous species of scorpion. Its venom is a powerful mixture ofneurotoxins, with a low lethal dose. While a sting from this scorpion is extraordinarily painful, it normally would not kill a healthy adult human; young children, the elderly, or infirm (such as those with a heart condition and those who are allergic) are at much greater risk. ” (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Color Description: This type of scorpion is a distinctive warm greenish yellow, and did you know that all scorpions glow a teal/blue in ultraviolet light? This shade has a base that is a smokey warm green with a golden glow, and interference shift that goes gold-chartreuse-green-teal – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
I feel like this is prettier in real life than in the site swatches. It is soft and subtle and gives that glow in the dark kind of vibe.
Chironex fleckeri (Sea wasp box jelly fish)
Derived from the Greek `cheiro’ meaning `hand’, and the Latin `nex’ meaning `murderer’, and `fleckeri’ in honour of its discoverer, Dr. Hugo Flecker. “Commonly known as sea wasp, Chironex fleckeri is a species of box jellyfish found in coastal waters from northern Australia and New Guinea north to the Philippines and Vietnam. It has been described as “the most lethal jellyfish in the world”. It is the largest of the cubozoans (collectively called box jellyfish), many of which may carry similarly toxic venom. Its bell grows to about the size of a basketball. From each of the four corners of the bell trails a cluster of 15 tentacles. The pale blue bell has faint markings; viewed from certain angles, it bears a somewhat eerie resemblance to a human head or skull. Since it is virtually transparent, the creature is nearly impossible to see in its habitat, posing particular danger to swimmers.” (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Color Description: This shade has a base in a deeper blue-grey and it shifts to a brighter blue to teal and also violet – depending on lighting conditions and angles in which you view.
I would say that the description is fairly accurate. I don’t notice much color change in this one but it is pretty. It’s a blue I actually like on me!
Lets talk just a moment about the claims made for these eyeshadows because they are somewhat unique. Here is the description from the Aromaleigh website:
Halloween 2015 brings “Fatalis”, inspired by poisonous flora and fauna. The 10/1 release will feature 10 vibrant color traveling eyeshadows, 4 unique multipurpose contour powders, 2 highlighters, a finishing powder, and 2 Nourishing Color Creme for lips.
This eyeshadow collection features truly unique, color traveling pigments that display a strong and vibrant color shift under direct, artificial light sources. When they are in between two different light sources, you will be able to see the strongest multiple color transmission. Under direct sunlight or diffused artificial light, the effects are muted or washed out, and you will only see a slight and subtle color shift.
As the pigments used in this collection are extremely costly and used as the highest percentage in the formulas (they are six times the cost of the typical duochrome/interference pigment), I have adjusted prices/sizing accordingly. Basically, you will find that these are twice the cost of other Aromaleigh eyeshadows. Example: a regular Aromaleigh sample is 1/8 tsp in a baggie for $1.25. In Fatalis, you get 1/16th tsp in a baggie for the same price of $1.25)
Recommended application for these is over a cream eyeshadow base (NYX cream eyeshadow base is my go-to!). Sticky or glue bases may work well for you, but I personally don’t use these or test/swatch my products with them. With all color shifting/duochrome shades, I urge you to use a flat taklon brush or other suitable tool to flatten and align the color shifting component of the eyeshadow. This will create a more uniform and reflective surface.
So I took photos of a few of my eye looks under different lighting to see how much change I would get. For science!
Rainbow look in somewhat diffused natural light (the same car lighting that I take most of my full face photos in)
Artificial lighting in my kitchen:
Standing next to a window with indoor lights on as well:
Product list for this eye look: Loreal concealer as primer, LORAC Unzipped palette: Undercover as highlight and blending shade, Unconditional as transition shade. Darling Girl Glitter Glue, Aromaleigh shades from the inner corner working out: Nerium oleander, Amanita muscaria, Phyllobates terribilis, Leiurus quinquestriatus, Chironex fleckeri and Atropa belladonna. Rimmel Nude liner in the waterline, Jordana Best Lash mascara, Nuance Shape and Define Brow Kit in Medium Blonde.
The Helleborus niger look in different lighting:
Honestly? I think it just looks like different lighting, I saw no real differences in the way that my eyeshadow looked. The swatches look somewhat different in different lighting but on the eye? Not so much. Sometimes the eyeshadow would look a bit different if I stood 6 feet away from a mirror as opposed to two feet away, but even then, the difference was fairly minimal.
Here are a couple of comparisons with different bases:
I think that the results without glitter glue are softer and more ethereal but the glitter glue brings out a bit of the shift and sparkle. So…basically exactly what you would expect.
Pricing and Availability:
1/8 tsp (Demi sample jar) – $3.50
1/2 tsp (Mini jar with artwork) – $7.25
Sample baggies are only available if you purchase the whole set.
1/16 tsp (baggies full set) – $12.50
Demi sample set – $35.00
Mini set – $$72.50
This is a limited edition set for Halloween. It is stated in some of the product descriptions that this will be retired in December but will be brought back next Halloween. It isn’t stated everywhere though so I’m not sure if certain shades will be making a comeback or if the whole set will. In any case, you can get this through December.
Does the product behave as advertised:
Quite frankly, no. I don’t think that these really qualify as duochromes or multichromes or any crazy unreal color shift anything. From the photos and the descriptions on the website I was really expecting shades that were rainbows and unicorns but that isn’t really the case.
That being said, these are super lovely eyeshadows. I can’t quite place my finger on what they remind me of but it might be those dragon tears, the glass drops that you can put in fish tanks or vases. They’re a little like watercolors or stained glass, I’m not exactly sure. They’re really beautiful! Just not really anything like the website led me to believe.
I didn’t experience any creasing or fading or really any fall out and often, these still looked pretty darn good even after hitting the gym.
These are pretty easy to work with for something so sparkly. I had very minimal fall out which was really surprising. I didn’t have trouble blending out the edges after initial application but I didn’t find it terribly easy to blend two shades into one another. They mostly worked out best when applied as a single lid shade. (If you have these and you find them easy to blend and wear together share your secrets!)
Cohesion of the collection:
The theme is perfection. I felt like there was a great mix of flora and fauna represented and I loved it. As far as the actual shadows go, this isn’t a collection that you would purchase and think “Hey, now I don’t need any other eyeshadows in my life!” (Well maybe you would, in which case, you go with your bad self!). Every shade is sparkly and glittery. There is an entire rainbow available and I LOVE that!
Overall, I liked this collection more the more I actually used it. The shades are a bit ethereal and ghostly but still colorful and pretty. That being said, I think I’m ready for some totally matte eyeshadow looks now.
Did you see the pre-release pictures? Do you think they look anything like my swatches? Or your swatches? If you have anything from this collection I’m really really interested to hear your thoughts on it! Or if you’re planning on getting something I’d love to know what and why! Let’s talk about glittery rainbows in the comments!
- I’m thinking of starting a gym page on this blog. I don’t know how often I would have anything to write about but I think it would be fun to swap workouts and recipes and have a place to encourage each other in our health goals.
- Thing Cat and I basically snuggled all afternoon. It was delightful.
- I can’t stop eating grapes. I don’t know what that’s all about but they’re like crack. Have you seen the Moondrop grapes? I’m skeptical about the “non-GMO” claims but honestly, if Moondrop grapes are wrong, I don’t want to be right.