March 07, 2012

Josie Maran Argan Eyeshadow Quad

I was introduced to the Josie Maran brand back in my Sephora days. Like the case is with most brand debuts, we had a full-store training session, where a rep from the company did her very best to convince us that THEIR brand was everything we had dreamed of and more. It honestly didn't take much convincing. Josie Maran has simple, elegant packaging, a good range of products, lovely colors and an eco-conciousness that's easy to get behind. I haven't experimented much with it since leaving the store, but I recently ordered a few items to see if they lived up to my remembered impressions.

The limited edition Argan Eyeshadow Quad seemed like a good place to start, as it contains four eyeshadows, including one from the regular line.

The packaging is simple and sturdy, made from partially recycled materials. The colors inside are described as:

Partagas - a rich, spiced rum shade with flecks of golden glitter
Cloak - a pitch-black matte shadow with peekaboo silver glitter
Valencia - a warm copper color with a sprinkling of bronze glimmer
Cinnamon - our best-selling champagne pink shimmer

This is a fairly neutral palette, though Valencia might be difficult for cooler complexions. What's really nice is how well the shades all work together, and can be combined to create anything from a nude, subtle look to a fairly dramatic smoky eye. This is the kind of palette you can take traveling and have most most of your bases covered.

With flash.

Indirect natural light.

Partagas has wonderful pigmentation, applies and blends smoothly, and feels wonderfully soft. Dip your brush carefully, because it will kick up some powder if used too forcefully. The tiny bit of gold mico-glitter doesn't really read upon application.

Cloak is not what I would call pitch-black, it's more of a soft black. It applies well for a matte (no patchiness), even though it has a drier texture than all the others in this quad. The glitter does fall-out a bit, and disappears pretty much entirely when blended in. It is, however, the perfect shade to smoke a crease without going too dark, and adds a nice layer for evening versatility to this quad.

Valencia has a similar texture to Partagas, though softer and even more pigmented, and a shimmer/metallic. It's really lovely.

Cinnamon is a shimmer, again very soft, with sheerer pigmentation. Beautiful as a highlight, though it also work well as a lid color to brighten up the area. I have no idea why they named it Cinnamon, as it is the least likely color for that moniker.

All of the shades held up well over a primer, with no creasing, and only slight fading (for Cinnamon only) at the 8 hour mark.

Indirect light.

Indirect light, different angle.

Availability: Can be purchased from for 24$. The site does ship to Canada, and purchases over 25$ ship for free. Which is pretty damn awesome!

Pros: Soft textures, great pigmentation, and the shades work well together, making for a simple but versatile palette. Eco-friendly and very reasonably priced.

Cons: The slight glitter fall-out on Cloak, and Cinnamon could be a smidge more pigmented.

(I purchased this from the Josie Maran website.)


  1. Anonymous7.3.12

    That's a great neutral palette to check out, especially if you're new to the brand! I have yet to try any of Josie Maran's makeup, but I'm sure I'll come around soon enough :)

    1. It's definitely a good place to start. =)

      Do you have the brand at a Sephora near you?

  2. I love Josie Maran! I only have her tinted moisturizer right now which I think is great. Strange that I don't have more of her things.

    Man, your photos are gorgeous. And I love how clutter-free your blog layout is.

    1. I know, right? Every time I wear something of hers, I wonder why I don't have more.

      And wow, thank you! I keep thinking I should get an actual camera and set up a light box for product shots. My iphone and Ikea desktop is SO not pro, lol!

  3. I've never tried anything from this line, though I've been tempted several times...I just get side-tracked checking out other things, then next thing you know, I've forgotten all about it AGAIN! What I like about this quad is that the colours all seem very wearable and can easily transcend the seasons....lovely swatches Maggie!

    1. My gosh, Eugenia, there is SO. MUCH. OUT. THERE. I can't even begin to list all the things I'd love the try, so believe me, I understand about getting side-tracked, lol! Josie Maran is just such a sweet little brand, and the lady behind it seems so genuine, that it almost makes you feel good to splurge on their stuff, you know?

  4. Anonymous17.3.12

    I have this quad from a set that came out one Christmas. It makes a great smokey eye!
    I like her stick blushes a lot! Have you got any of them?

    1. Nope, not yet! I mostly have eye products from her, but I'm going to have to try more things soon. =)


Hi! Thank you for your comment, I love to hear back from you guys. =) I try to respond back to every comment within a few days.

Please don't use this comment form for self-promotion, though. It's bad blogger etiquette. And we don't wish to upset Emily Post. ;)