Indie Loose Eyeshadow/Pigment Pressing Experiment

Monday, February 10, 2014

Warning!: Pic heavy and wordy but worth it :) 

My first foray back into makeup started with reading blog's like and discovering the world of indie makeup. Here I found small companies producing amazing products in complex and bright shades for a fraction of the cost of what I would normally pay in store. Needless to say over the years I've collected a ridiculous amount of pigments and loose eyeshadows, I can't help myself there's just so many pretty colours!

Around this time I also found out about TKB trading and all the possibilities of making my own mineral makeup - so off I went and invested in all the micas, pressing powder mediums, empty pans, clear jars - the absolute works! Aaaaand about 3 custom eyeshadows later, into a plastic storage tub at the top of my wardrobe they went for about, oh I don't know, 2 years or so LOL.

What's all this back story got to do with today's post I hear you ask? Well somehow or another I ended up reading a blog swatch post on some Fyrinnae shadows and all nostalgic like, went to my stash and thought I have so many here that I just never bother to use, living in their drawers, never seeing the light of the day cos lets face it I'm not a morning person and can't be arsed dealing with fussy if any makeup in the mornings.

....the inspiration to finally press them all struck! =D

So first steps first, I googled how to press Fyrinnae loose eyeshadows and came across shamelessfripperies and drivolaboutfrivol who had fantastic tutorials which I used as my baseline. 

Below is a list of the equipment and and materials I used:
  • 70-100% Isopropyl alcohol (in this case a 100% Isopropyl solution sold as brush cleaner by my local chemist who stock a wide variety of SFX makeup supplies)
  • MyMix pressing medium by TKB Trading
  • a syringe for measuring and dispensing the alcohol into mixing jars
  • plastic jars to mix in
  • paper towel
  • ribbon
  • toothpicks or spatula to stir with
  • empty pans or your choice

I started with three different brands of shadows, Concrete Minerals, Fyrinnae and Shiro to trial with before destroying my entire stash! The formula ratio I used was 3 drops of the MyMix pressing medium from TKB trading to a 1/4 tsp sample from Fyrinnae, 6 drop for a full size Concrete Mineral shadow and 4 drops for a full size Shiro shadow. For the alcohol ratio it was as much as I needed to make it goopy.

- Concrete Minerals in Unity - 

As this was a full size eyeshadow I went balls-to-the-wall in trying to produce a perfect "wet sand texture" as mentioned in other tutorials..... translation: I sort of killed it with 6 drops of MyMix.

ALL TEH DROPZ!!!!! MWuahahahahhah

It looks kind of like wet sand right?

*sings*..Purple Dough, Purple Dooooooughhhhhhh.....Purple dough, purple doughhhhh.........I only want to see you laughing in the Purple Dough......

Next I added just a few drops of alcohol at a time until it looked like a damp ball of dough. Then I scooped it into the pan and smeared it around til it filled it up corner to corner. 

Dough,  meet Pan.
Looks like lumpy purple custard 

Due to my impatience and delusions of MacGuyver like prowess I used a cotton wool circle instead of paper towel and a TKB tamping tool to press the shadow. The result was a rather dry uneven looking product.  I think I used too much MyMix I left it to dry out more before attempting to swatch it.

ahh impatience - should have waited for the paper towel

After drying I found the shadow to be really hard and not have much payoff *cries* - definitely less MyMix on the next Concrete Mineral shadow. In an attempt to fix the appearance to a less lumpy look, I flooded the pan with alcohol and then re-pressed the shadow with paper towel and ribbon - which definitely fixed the look - it didn't however fix the colour pay off :(

a lil alcohol and she's all shiny again! still crappy colour payoff though  :( 

- Fyrinnae in Danse Macabre - 

Back to the drawing board, I googled some more and thought maybe I should try Fyrinna in Danse Macabre next and not try to wing it, but follow someone else's more accurate instructions to the letter LOL.
This time I used 3 drops of MyMix and as advised by Karima at ShamelessFripperies, stirred the shadow and pressing medium until it looked like wet sand, not feel like wet sand. I also added more alcohol to this batch, saturating the mix to resemble "magic mud", this goopy stuff we made in primary school out of corn starch and water that was both a solid and liquid at the same time.

*look* for the wet sand, don't feel for it
green eyeshadow snot 

Next I scraped the mixture into the pan, spread it around and set it aside until it was dry enough to press. The main reason/thought behind waiting for it to dry is to stop the paper towel absorbing too much pigment when pressing. Once dry enough I pressed this one with paper towel a few times to soak up as much of the alcohol as possible and then using a ribbon I pressed it once more to leave cross hatch marks on the surface.

goop, goop, goop into the pan you go! 
*glub glub* 
voila! sexy Danse Macabre pressed eyeshadow

This one turned out miles better than Unity!

- Shiro in Din's Fire - 

Last up is Din's Fire by Shiro. Due to how much product is packed in to the tineh tineh jar, I transferred it to a larger one to mix in.
Also due to there being more product than in the Fyrinnae mini I add 3 drops of MyMix at the start, then cautiously worked in a 4th which resulted in perfect "wet sand" texture.
Put it into the pan, spread evenly and wait a while to let some of the alcohol evaporate and then press with paper towel and a ribbon.

transferred to bigger mixing jar and cutting in 4 drops of MyMix

magic eyeshadow mud

all that eyeshadow for that tineh tineh pan!! ( it fit in by the end lol)

an example of the "magic mud effect" (aka colloidal suspension) plus poking it was funny

Din's Fire all pretty and pressed up in pink! also featuring TKB tamping tool and ribbon!

Below are some swatches of the 3 final products once dry. 
L-R CM's Unity, Shiro's Din's Fire, Fyrinnae's Danse Macabre under bounced flash/artificial daylight temperature light
L-R CM's Unity, Shiro's Din's Fire, Fyrinnae's Danse Macabre under shaded afternoon daylight

L-R CM's Unity, Shiro's Din's Fire, Fyrinnae's Danse Macabre under shaded afternoon daylight

All in all the experiment went well, and I think I worked out a rough formula that should work with most loose shadows. In my next post coming up I'll show you my DIY palette and more hand pressed eyeshadows. Hope this was helpful to anyone out there wanting to press their stash of indie shadows and that is post wasn't too long!!! =^_^= (if you tl;dr I'll totally understand LOL) 

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