Late last year I stumbled upon a new brand of makeup that was not only cruelty free, but boasted a $1 price tag for every item. The allure of cheap, socially conscious makeup was far too much of a pull for me to ignore, and so I handed over a good $20 (including shipping) for a little bit of everything AOA Studios had to offer.
As you can see, my haul was pretty large, but I wanted to get an idea of the quality of their makeup across the board. I was…slightly disappointed. Let’s take a closer look:
AOA Wonder Skin – Poreless Face Primer
As I settle into my 30s, I’ve noticed my pores are getting larger and larger (yay), so I tend to look for primers that can help me diminish that lovely orange peel look. This primer not only failed to fill my pores, it failed to help my makeup stick to my face for a whole day. In fact, I think it actually made things worse…
AOA Wonder Cover Corrector – White Highlighter
They say you’re supposed to choose concealer that is one shade lighter than your foundation color. For my pale ass, that’s pretty laughable right there. So, having lacked a concealer for a couple of years now, and seeing that AOA had one in white, I figured I’d give it a go.
I can say that this concealer does its job and has some serious staying power. I use it under my eyes for those days when I look like I went a few rounds with a professional boxer in my sleep. Other than that, it just sits in the “once in a while” drawer of my vanity. I think I got used to not having concealer.
Super Soft Wonder Blender – Beveled
You may remember me putting this little gal on my favorite things list of 2017, but if not, let me take a minute to gush. This blender is just as good as the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge, but $5 cheaper. I really, really love it. It gives me that flawless finish, cleans easily, and holds up well. I’ll be buying it again!
AOA Sculpting Brow Pencil – “Taupe”
To get a good color payoff from this pencil, you have to press pretty hard, which ends up leaving your brows a bit waxy. Thankfully the built in spoolie can help you tame them. However, having medium ash brown hair, I have a hard time finding products that match my brow color, and this one juuuuust misses the mark. I tossed it in my makeup backlog to have around in case of an emergency.
AOA Wonder Baked Eyeshadow – “Poetic”
The AOA eyeshadow does an admirable job. It could use a little more color payoff, but other than that, it’s perfectly usable. However, I’m a slave to Coastal Scents, so this guy ended up in the makeup backlog.
AOA Wonder Baked Highlighter – “Cloud”
This is a pretty decent highlighter. It showed up on my skin (which is something I often have trouble with), and gave me a little sparkle. I’ve used better, smoother highlighters in the past, but for $1, this one is surprisingly good.
AOA Wonder Lipliner – “Drama”
A wonderful little lipliner for a price that can’t be beat. It goes on smooth and velvety like a gel, rather than feeling like you’re stabbing yourself with a pencil, and stays put all day. Now, I just have to find another lipstick to pair it with, because…
AOA Wonder Matte Liquid Lipstick – “Drama”
This. Lipstick. Sucks. No ifs, ands, or buts — this is some garbage ass liquid lipstick right here. To start, it went on patchy as all get out. I spent a good 10 minutes getting it to a point where I was satisfied. I wore it for exactly 28 minutes. In that time, I walked around a craft store, said “thank you” to a cashier, and went straight home. I did not eat anything, or speak more than those two words. When I looked in the mirror again, I had the dreaded “butthole” look and my poor lips were dry and peeling. I took it off and immediately threw the lipstick in the trash.
AOA Wonder Metal Liquid Lipstick – “Unicorn”
My experience with the last liquid lipstick was so bad, that I honestly didn’t try this one until this morning. It’s just been sitting on my vanity for three months. While this lipstick isn’t quite as horrible as the last, it certainly isn’t good. The color went on smooth and opaque (no patchiness), but again, I only wore it for about half an hour. During that time I didn’t eat or drink anything, but I did sing a bit (one does not simply refuse to sing along to Soundgarden’s “Spoonman”). I ended up with dry, “butthole” lips again. This one is going in the trash too.
AOA Wonder Liplock – “Potion” Mattes (“Front Row”)
I have to say, this is quite possibly the weirdest lipstick I’ve ever experienced. I tried to apply it straight to my lips, but the color was hard to get on and kept skipping. I grabbed a lip brush and used that to apply it instead. Unfortunately, while doing so, I found out that despite its troublesome application issues, the lipstick itself is very soft — I accidentally crushed it. Both frustrated and pissed, I was still determined to get a review in. I got the lipstick on and was puzzled by its feel and wear. There was no color transfer — which I don’t have to tell you is weird in a bullet lipstick — and my lips felt as if I’d applied a mixture of contact paper and wax to them. It wasn’t necessarily unpleasant, but it was strange. It wore perfectly through a two hour work meeting in which I spoke often. However, I was eager to get it off when I got home. It went straight into the trash as well. The time it takes to apply just isn’t worth it for me. 2/5
AOA Diamond Lipgloss – “Glitz”
I don’t like lip gloss. It’s sticky and gross. But, for the sake of a review, I decided to give this one a go. It’s very pretty, and adds a nice golden sparkle to whatever I choose to wear it over. But it’s still sticky. I tossed it in the backlog to wear to holiday parties.
a2o Setting Spray
This setting spray is actually part of the a2o line, which is slightly more expensive than their AOA counterparts. I spent $3.50 on it. I wish I’d spent that money on a cup of coffee. Not only did this setting spray smell like feet, it also failed to set my makeup. I mean….come on. You had one job!
AOA Makeup Remover Wipes – Cucumber
When it comes to makeup remover wipes, there’s really only one thing they need to do well — remove your makeup. To be honest, a slightly damp paper towel would have worked better than these. I shrugged my shoulders, remembered that they only cost a dollar, and chucked them straight into the trash.
AOA Canvas Pouch – “Beauty Essentials”
I love this pouch. It stores almost all of my makeup backlog. It’s a decent size, well made, and cute to boot! I’m pleased with this purchase!
So, if we’re going by the law of averages, my AOA Studio Makeup experience ended up being a 2.2/5 and that’s not exactly a winning number. There are a few things that I do recommend — namely the sponge, the lipliner, and their adorable selection of pouches. Other than that, I suggest you spend your money elsewhere. When it comes to AOA, the old adage, “You get what you pay for” is dead on.
*Three Broke Bunnies were not financially compensated for this post. Everything featured was paid for out of pocket. The opinions stated are completely our own and based on our experience. We are not part of any affiliate programs.*