Review: Make Up For Ever Aqua Essentials Kit (Sephora Beauty in a Box)

By Voxy  

Since we are still in the Sweaty Glowy Summer Season and you may be in the market for sweatproof, waterproof, budgeproof cosmetics, I thought I’d review the rest of the products in the Make Up For Ever Aqua Essentials Set, available from Sephora for $69. This turned out to be a very mixed bag for me; some products perform excellently, others … not so much.

First of all you will remember that I am apparently the only person on the planet who didn’t like the long-awaited and much-lemminged Aqua Creams. I’m going to give them another chance, though, and will report back if I get better results.

The kit also comes with a lip pencil, two eye pencils, a waterproof mascara, and a small bottle of eye makeup remover for waterproof makeup. All except the eye makeup remover are full-size products. I can’t comment on the mascara because I’m still finishing up a tube of Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes and so I haven’t even opened it. (Since mascara goes bad so quickly, I really hate to have more than one open at a time.) I also try to stay away from waterproof mascara since my eyes are so sensitive to mascara flakes and it’s harder to remove waterproof mascara cleanly than it is to remove non-waterproof mascara.

Speaking of that, the makeup remover works perfectly well. I wish I could get more excited about it than that, but that’s about all the rah-rah I’ve got. It’s a lotion rather than a liquid; no shaking or mixing required. It works. It’s neither better nor worse than most other makeup removers I’ve tried. It’s no Lancome Bi-Facil, but it does the job.

The lip pencil, sadly, is not as good as I wanted it to be. I compared notes with Marigolds on the subject and she has the same opinion. The shade is nice, and is a neutral terracotta that should be good for a variety of skintones, but it just doesn’t last, even with TFLI underneath it. Sorry, MUFE, but Urban Decay has it all over you in the lip pencil department.

By way of redemption, though, the MUFE eye pencils are quite nice. The two that come in the kit are black and a kind of bluish-gray. Excellent for making smoky eyes, but just as capable (when sharpened) of very satisfactory tightlining. They stay put on the lashline (so long as you’ve got a good primer underneath) and hold their color for most of the day.

Is it worth purchasing? Well, if you like the Aqua Creams, which retail for $22 apiece, and you like the Aqua Eyes eye pencils, which retail for $17 apiece, then buying this kit will save you $9 over purchasing those products separately, and you get a full-size lip pencil, full-size mascara, and small bottle of makeup remover thrown in for good measure.


Left to right: Aqua Creams in #13 Warm Beige and #15 Taupe, Aqua Eyes pencils in Mat Black 0L and Dark Grey 21L, Aqua Lip in Nude Beige 1C (and by the way, “nude beige” absolutely does not describe this color).


MUFE Aqua Essentials Kit: $69 at Sephora

Provenance: Purchased

Price/Value Ratio (high-end: poor/fair/good/excellent): For me, since I dislike the Aqua Creams, poor. However, if the products work for you, this could easily turn out to be an Excellent.

Purchase again? Not this one, but that’s not to say I won’t be suckered in by future offerings…

(Have you used this product? Love it? Hate it? Want it? Give a holler in the comments!)

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  1. avatar marigolds
    Posted August 2, 2010 at 3:54 pm | Permalink | Reply

    The mascara is OK, but I have decided I like Maybelline’s Full ‘n’ Soft waterproof better. The MUFE is all spiky and hard, like most waterproof mascara is; the Maybelline is, well, full and soft.

    I have been loving the eye pencils; they’re great for the waterline. I have not even tried the eye makeup remover yet, because it’s in such a cute wee bottle that I am saving it in my travel kit.

    And I read the other day on the modelmayhem sites that the aqua creams are definitely designed to be applied with fingers rather than brushes; I really feel like that might help you like it better the next time around!


  2. avatar Francie
    Posted July 31, 2010 at 11:25 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Voxy, have you forgotten? Ladies do not sweat; they perspire.

    I do like that dark gray eye pencil, though.


    • avatar Voxy
      Posted August 1, 2010 at 2:14 am | Permalink | Reply

      No, no — we glow. I could never do something as jejune as … perspire.


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