Let's start with the positive: the colour combination
*Top right: neutral taupe shimmer with cooler aqua duochcome, pigmented
*Bottom left: warm red-purple shimmer with aqua duochrome, very pigmented
Bottom right: cool lemon frost, very sheer
The starred shades are duochromes: the effect strongest in the magenta, also strong in the taupe and very subtle in the peach -- as you can tell from the product pics, there isn't a single angle at which the purple doesn't flash aqua, while the peach just shifts from warmer to cooler versions of itself. In finish, all four shades are frosts, mainly differing in terms of opacity -- the sheerest lemon yellow appearing least solid/opaque only because its shimmer is less tightly packed, and vice versa for the purple.
For me, the textural variety in EX-12 Hisuidama is far preferable, but I think again Suqqu's clever naming intimates more than you might think -- the identical finishes in Violet Pearl, worn all together, do evoke something of dusty/velvety violet petals as well as the blandly smooth surfaces of pearls.
ONE swipe with sponge applicators
|natural light, shade|
TWO swipes of the peach and yellow
|natural light, sunny|
THREE swipes of the peach and yellow
|natural light, sunny|
The first picture illustrates how sheer the lighter two shades are; the last picture, with both built up to stand alongside the darker two, shows how closely we're edging to wall-of-frost territory if all four colours are worn as colours -- terrible news for a frost-hater like me, who fell for the idea of this palette because of the combination of all four shades together. :(
The monotextural meh is exacerbated by the fact that the the taupe sits on a yellow-brown base which blends out very similarly to the lemon yellow, while the purple shade blends out into a warm reddened plum which likes to eat up the warm pink-peach. Which combines to make this quad a further disappointment, once layered.
No real new shades or even particularly fresh nuances; certainly nothing as dramatic as the genuine duochrome flashes you can create by layering Hisuidama.
Time for a wee compare'n'contrast with some other palettes I own. I already mentioned that I love the idea of Sumiredama's colour combination, right? Because it seems that I have some overlapping palettes already: THREE 04 Art of Parties (purples, yellow, yellow-brown), EST Emotional Aura Eyes 03 (dc) (yellow, pink, taupe, plum), and Hourglass Exhibition duo (taupe, plum).
The EST 03 quad illustrates the kind of balance between four shades (all well pigmented, though of different finishes) I'd been hoping for from Sumiredama. The Suqqu quad is overall warmest, and softest -- THREE Art of Parties the most varied. I kind of threw Hourglass Exhibition in the mix to suggest just how unusual Suqqu's 'taupe' and 'plum' are to the shades we tend to think of when those words are used -- definitely neutrals with a twist.
Despite ousting 04 Keshizumi [review] to make room for Sumiredama, I still have a goodly collection of Suqqu quads which overlap with it: 08 Mizuaoi (pink/purple), 06 Ginbudou (gold/purple), EX-05 Usumomokurumi (LE Christmas 2011) (pink, warm taupe) and 10 Sakuragi (dc) (yellow, warm taupe, plum).
While not technically the most 'neutral', Sumiredama is the most low-contrast of any of these quads. The closest analogue is Sakuragi, but while that quad (inspired by the tones of sakura tree bark) coalesces austere grey tones, Suremidama's shades are all lit by a warm yellow/peach glow -- two very different springtime moods.
Top left peach-pink with Rouge Bunny Rouge Sleeping Under a Mandarin Tree and Eaten All the Cherries pigments, and Angelic Cockatiels and Fire-Tailed Sunbird pressed shadows; the top right orange from Suqqu 07 Komorebi and the top right pink from Suqqu 08 Mizuaoi.
Sumiredama's peachy-pink is sheer, and most similar to Fire-Tailed Sunbird, albeit with a weaker duochrome, and lacking the RBR shade's clear vibrancy.
Top right taupe duochrome with:
Rouge Bunny Rouge Solstice Halcyon layered with Periwinkle Cardinal
Fyrinnae Damn Paladins (now known as Work Safe Blue)
the top right taupe from Suqqu EX-05 Usumomokurumi
all four shades of Suqqu EX-12 Hisuidama layered
|clearer angle for the flash|
Fyrinnae Damn Paladins/Work Safe Blue has the most similar (yellowed-taupe) base, but its duochrome is paler and much stronger, almost obscuring the base altogether. RBR Periwinkle Cardinal has the right mix of blue/green to mimic Sumiredama's aqua flash, and its grey tones help pull the more mauve-based Solstice Halcyon into neutral territory. Contrast Sumiredama's taupe base with the definite mauve tones of Usumomokurumi's taupe, next to it. Hisuidama is.....my pretty, pretty princess. *sigh*
Bottom left plum duochrome with Catrice C'Mon Chameleon; Fyrinnae Conjuror; the darker shade of Hourglass Exhibition; the bottom left purple from Suqqu 08 Mizuaoi; the top left purple silk smooth from Shu Uemura Prestigious Bordeaux; Pixi Black Tulip pencil; THREE Eye Belong pencil.
Sumiredama's plum has a base whose mutedness and warmth only really comes through when contrasted against cooler, clearer purples from Mizuaoi, Pixi and THREE. This warmth is distinctly red-toned, rather than Prestigious Bordeaux's scattered pink-and-gold complexity, or Exhibition's brown notes. It is in fact, pretty much what you'd get by mixing Catrice's C'Mon Chameleon (the better version of MAC Club) with Fyrinnae Conjuror and subtracting a good dose of glitter.
Bottom right lemon yellow with the leftmost gold in KATE Deep Trap Eyes GR-1 (dc); the top left shade from EST 03; the top left warm gold from Suqqu 06 Ginbudou; the bottom right glitter from THREE 04 Art of Parties; and Rouge Bunny Rouge Unforgettable Oriole.
Again, Sumiredama's gold likes to disappear, even in a heavy fingertip swatch. As you can see, I have no problem getting either paler (KATE/EST) shades or more delicately diffuse textures (Ginbudou, THREE) to show up on my skin. WHAT IS THIS CRUEL WITCHCRAFT.
(I will post a few looks with Sumiredama over the week, but may as well admit now that it's gone straight back 'out' again. Please don't burn the heretic.)