Monday, August 8, 2011

Linnaeus Cosmetics Review + Swatches (and a FOTD!)

I've heard so many good things about Linnaeus, so when Marin, the owner, threw a 30% off sale, I had to indulge just a wee bit. I received my package last week and have had a bit of a play... so let's review, shall we?

Linnaeus Cosmetics can be purchased at
A 5 gram jar of eyeshadow is $6, while a 1/4 tsp sample is $1.

Marin's website is laid out very nicely, everything is clear to read and easy to navigate. The eyeshadows are divided into colors and then also collections. As the entire company focuses around animals, the eyeshadows are all vegan and not tested on animals. Once Marin gets the business more steady, she intends on donating proceeds to wildlife preservation organizations. I have to say, that is something I can support for sure!

A photo, swatch, description of the color and ingredients are listed for each eyeshadow on the website. As I said, all of the colors focus on animals so she also includes a section called 'the wildlife' and 'the eyeshadow' where she talks about the animal the shadow is based on and then describes the shadow and why she choose it. Again, I really like this concept and respect it. I also found that the swatches on the site were pretty accurate to the shadows in real life.

I ordered the 10 eyeshadow sample package for $10, and received 30% off. My order total with shipping came to $8. I had a bit of a snafu in Etsy and couldn't list my colors before it confirmed my order, so I emailed my choices to Marin instead. She was so courteous and let me know that she received the email right away! I was kept up to date on the status of my order throughout the process, and she shipped in a timely fashion.

I received my package in just over a week after ordering and was absolutely amazed at what I received.

I received my 10 samples plus -4- additional samples! Marin also included a handwritten letter discussing why she choose the additional samples she did and also encouraging a Mac shopping trip if she visits here ;-) (she doesn't live far from me at all!). I was seriously blown away at the personal service (and even the moose stamp on the back of my package... and the tiger mini business card. CUTE.)

I ordered: Anomaly, Lanky, Kitsch, Hold Fast, Swoop, Pollywog, Bombastico, Flutter, Hope and Reef. I received free samples of Matriarch, Truculent, Largo and Anomaly.

You're probably ready for swatches, so let's go! As usual, natural light/no flash is the top photo and the bottom is flash, all over Darling Girl Glitter Glue.

Left to right: Matriarch, Twiggy and Lanky

Matriarch is from the Golden Lion Tamarind collection. It is a dusky, slightly bronzed gold with silver shimmer.

Twiggy is from the Maned Wolf collection. I found this to be a bit peachier and less orange than the website swatch. It's a peachy champagne with a stronger shimmer finish.

Lanky is also from the Maned Wolf collection. This is a burnt orange with very slight orange shift. Quite unique.

Left to right: Kitsch and Reef

Kitsch is from the Puna Flamingo collection and is an amazing shimmery magenta. There is a slight violet shift. I love that this is vibrant without being neon!

Reef is from the Orchid Dottback collection and is a pinky coral with a lighter pink shift, medium shimmer. This one had a bit of orange as well but was really hard to capture on camera.

Left to right: Pollywog, Hold Fast and Swoop

Pollywog is from the Green Mantellas collection. I have to apologize for the horrible swatch! It is color accurate but I know there is a huge gap where there is no shadow that stuck to my hand. This is a hard shade to describe... sort of a dusky green with gold shift and a bit of aqua as well. Strange.

Hold Fast is from the Emerald Tree Skink collection. This is your classic shimmering grass green with a bit of gold. It's a little darker in real life versus my photos.

Swoop is from the Ruby Throated Hummingbird collection. This is a dusky olive with bronzey gold shift. I like that this is an olive that isn't in your face or overly shimmery, it would be a great color for green eyes.

Left to right: Hope and Anomaly

Hope is based on the Vaquita Porpoise (I believe this is from a Porpoise collection) and is a slightly murky green grey. The depth on this is amazing and I love that it has the most subtle hint of blue.

Anomaly is from the Echidna collection. This is a deep brown with just a hint of lean to taupe and slight bit of purple. Sometimes it appears taupe and other times it's a golden brown. Interesting.

Left to right: Flutter, Largo, Bombastico and bottom: Truculent

Flutter is from the Lovely Cotinga and is a beautiful shimmering sky blue. I think this is actually my favorite shade!

Largo is based on the Hyacinth Macaw and is a medium blue with slight shimmer. As the light hits it, it shifts to be much lighter and brighter. Compared to the website photo, I found it to be slightly less intense in pigmentation.

Bombastico is another Hyacinth Macaw shade and has a deeper base tone than Largo. There is a little bit of violet lurking in there as well.

Truculent is another shade from the Orchid Dottyback collection. This is a beautiful purple with violet shift and pink sparkles. Love.

So far, I am really enjoying these eyeshadows. They are very finely milled so applying them is easy and no fuss. I like that they represent animals and while some shades are vibrant and full of depth, some of them are softer and more representative of nature and it's natural tones. I wasn't disappointed with any of the shades. I think I hoped Largo would be a little brighter based on how it looked in the bag, but it does shift lighter and brighter as the light hits it. Overall, definitely recommended for purchase.

I put together a quick FOTD showcasing some colors that my husband so graciously helped pick out.

- Cover Girl Tinted Moisturizer in Fair to Light
- Mac MSF Natural in Light Medium
- Maybelline Superstay Concealer in Cream
- Maybelline Dream Mousse concealer in Ivory
- NYX blush in Terracotta

- Too Faced Shadow Insurance
- Linnaeus Cosmetics eyeshadow in Pollywog
- Linnaeus Cosmetics eyeshadow in Flutter
- Linnaeus Cosmetics eyeshadow in Hope
- Ben Nye eyeshadow in Ice
- Revlon eyeshadow in Vintage Lace
- Urban Decay eyeliner in Flipside
- MUA glitter liner in Shade 9
- Maybelline One by One mascara (black)

-Mac dazzleglass in Funtabulous


  1. Great review! I have been seeing a lot of wonderful things about Linnaeus. I will have to check them out! Beautiful colors you picked! And the green and blue look is so pretty!

  2. I love swoop, it's so pretty!!
    Grace xx

  3. I love Twiggy, Hope and Truculent. Good colour choices, Rob, love the LOTD.

  4. Love this look!! And name, some of those colors are screaming my name! ZOOOOOMMMMMMBBBBIIIEEEE! (like that.)

  5. Lanky and Hope are so beautiful!

  6. Beautiful look which showcases Marin's colors nicely!! I have numerous samples & some full sizes. Love everything I have!

  7. That lipglass looks so good on you! And it has the best name ever, haha.

  8. They're all pretty, but hot damn I need Hope and Anomaly. Purrty EOTD! :D

  9. Beautiful swatches and FOTD. :)