Etude House Play 101 Blending Pencil Review & Swatches

Happy Sunday! This post was supposed to go up last night but I forgot to take a few pictures which I need daylight to take 😦 but I took them this morning and the post is now here! Today I’ll be be reviewing Etude House’s newest addition to their Play 101 line – Blending Pencils!

WM IMG_7861

This month Etude House has released 25 “blending” pencils to their Play 101 line, which is a formula previously unseen, and the 3rd addition to this line. They come in Jewel, Creamy, Jelly, and Velvet finishes. I was sent the above 10 by Etude House, and bought one (#18, not pictured) myself on sale!

WM IMG_7877

This product promotes a formula that “melts and blends at a simple touch”, and can be used on any part of your face for a full makeup look.

WM IMG_7875
Ingredients & Description

Numbers 1 ~ 14 have 1.1g, and 15 ~ 25 contain 0.9g. I’m not sure why there is a difference when the price is the same – 7,900 KRW each!

WM IMG_7870
Creamy vs Jewel

The end of each pencil shows the colour that is inside like the rest of the line, and can be used to twist up more product. Depending on the finish of the pencil, the finish of the plastic on the end is also different, as you can see above with the Jewel texture pencil having small glitter flecks in it. 🙂

WM IMG_7874

The pencils have a rounded end which is small enough for precision work but big enough to be able to spread it over your face without taking 20 years to do so. 😀

WM IMG_7838
1, 4, 5, 11, 12, 13, 14, 18, 22, 24, 25

Apparently I have a hard time drawing straight lines 😂…The creamy textured pencils are by far my favourite. They draw on with one easy swipe, are extremely pigmented, and blend really nicely! The jewel ones also blend out easily and have a very flattering sheen to them. The velvet texture is also very smooth and pigmented, but you can see in the above pictures that they are a little chunky. They go on so creamily that when dragged across my arm they tended to bunch up. However, they go on very smoothly blended on your cheeks, eyes, or on your lips so I fin d this is only a problem with the swatches!

These can be used on the eyes alone or as a cream eyeshadow base. I recommend setting them to prevent creasing. They last all throughout the day without much fading, and the velvet texture is very moisturizing on the lips and quite long lasting!

•○ Play 101 Blending Pencil Brush Finger Brush ○•

WM IMG_7842

Another thing that Etude House generously sent me was the new brush that came out with the Blending Pencil line!

WM IMG_7844

Retails for 7,500 KRW.

WM IMG_7847
The wiggly font gives the brush such a weird illusion of being wiggly itself…

The brush comes with two ends – a dense angular brush end, and a Hershey’s Kiss-shaped (I’m sure there’s a better name for this) sponge end!

WM IMG_7856
#5 & #14 – Creamy & Jewel pencil blending test

For the above and below photo I drew 3 lines with the pencil and attempted to blend it out downwards. Above, I tried blending out both creamy and jewel pencils with the brush, and you can see the results above. The brush blended out the jewel pencil with less harsh lines, but didn’t do so well with the creamy pencil.

WM IMG_7858
#24 – Sponge blender test

I then tried using the sponge to blend out one of the velvet pencils and was veyr happy with the results. On the right I “stamped” the sponge to see how well it would fare, hence the more pronounced texture, and on the right I rubbed the sponge to give a smoother, blended out effect.

WM IMG_7852

I’ve used the brush end several times and I’m not sure how I feel about it yet. It blends out the pencils quite okay, but the texture is stiffer than I’d like a blending brush to be. I’d probably use this to pack powder shadow on to my lid more than anything. The sponge, however, I love!! My favourite way to use it is not on my lips, but by painting the pencil on the tip of the sponge directly and using it to apply and blend the colour on my eyes lightly. 😀

•○ Makeup Looks ○•

Etude House requested that we attempt the following two makeup looks that were done on Etude House’s most recent models, from the Korean idol group I.O.I. Tutorials for these looks can be found on Etude House’s website here (Wine Kiss) and here (Mini Wink).

Picture taken from Etude House’s official website

The first look is a light burgundy eye with a dark lip. This kind of look is something I’d normally go for, but since it was my first time trying out the Blending Pencils I STRUGGLED! 😦

WM IMG_7965
What a patchy, bruised-eye mess 😦

I found that drawing directly on the eye like they do in the videos and trying to blend it out after is a NIGHTMARE. Doing this makes the parts where you applied the pencil directly to be the strongest, with the rest of your eye looking patchy and terrible as you can see above. There are some parts with glitter, some parts without pigment, some parts with too much pigment…overall it’s a terrible, horrible look that I am embarrassed to even post on here 😂 It’s such a simple look but I was fighting with it for over 40 minutes; applying, blending, pulling up pigment by accident while attempting to blend, reapplying, removing, reapplying…etc. So stressful. 😥

WM IMG_7955

The full face looks a bit better from far away…I found the look not to be as dark and purpley as I imagined it to be based on the photos. I think I’d do much better if I were to re-do it, which I was going to do, but decided to upload it anyway so you can learn from my mistakes and use your pencils properly as I have since then. 🙂


The next look is a lighter, flirty pink look. I had given up all hope at this point after the disaster with the first look, but actually figured out how to do it properly this time!

WM IMG_7986
Much better!

I didn’t realize that the eye was much more blown out and slightly winged upwards while watching the video, oops 😦 But I found this one much easier to do than the previous look! The way I applied the pencil evenly over my full lid was by rubbing it on my finger, and then patting it on my lid that way instead of applying the pencil to my lid directly. They say that with all shadow you should always start light and build up rather than go heavy straight at once, as it’s harder to blend out pigment once you have too much on there, and these pencils follow the same rule. Patting it on with your finger gives a much more even, easily buildable finish than drawing the pencil on your lid and attempting to blend it out with a brush. 🙂

WM IMG_8002
My outside lighting is so green ㅠㅠ

As you can see on my lid here, this look is much better blended than the previous one! I used the brush to blend out the edges once I applied with my finger, and applied product to the sponge and swiped it under my eye to create a blended out, eyeliner-esque lower lash line.

WM IMG_7994

The blush was applied in the same way I did the eyes, which was by applying it to my finger and patting / rubbing it on instead of using the pencil on my face directly. The lips were the only thing I applied directly – #18 blended out with the sponge with a little #1 patted on top for shine.

•○ Final Thoughts ○•

WM IMG_7867

Despite the trial and error needed to figure out how to truly use these to their full potential, I really love these and have been using them very often! I really like the velvet texture as lip colours due to how moisturizing they are and easy to blend out on the lips. I’ve also been using the creamy shades as a base for my smokey/grungey eye looks and they work excellent for that!

All in all these are a great product that comes in an extensive range of colours. Great for those who are into throwing on a quick all-over lid shade and calling it a day, or swiping on a simple liner. It might take a bit of practice, but if you follow the tips I gave above, you should skip the trial and error process I went through and be able to create pretty looks with these!

As for the brush – you can probably skip it. I will be using it, but I don’t find it necessary or life changing.

And that’s it! My mom was visiting for a week and a half, but left yesterday so I’ll hopefully be able to get back into my blogging routine as I really do miss it ❤ I hope you enjoyed this post and I’ll try to prepare something for next time that ISN’T Etude House 😂 Until then~

Non-paid sponsor!




2 thoughts on “Etude House Play 101 Blending Pencil Review & Swatches

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s