Long story short: Fyrinnae's Mephisto is one of the most raved-about products in the indie world--and thus, a lot of similar shadows get compared to it. Here are three I've seen mentioned as possible dupes (Darling Girl's Blue Flame, Notoriously Morbid's Grand Empress, and Shiro's I Understood that Reference) and how they compare on my arm.
A pre-emptive apology: this was actually my first time using a glitter adhesive (yeah, I know, I'm still pretty much a makeup newbie) and my second time swatching, so there's a bit of patchiness in some of those swatches and that's user error, not the products.
Left side over Darling Girl Glitter Glue, right side over NYX Milk.
|Sunlight is the easiest way to get some sheen on camera--sorry for the yellow-y light.|
(Unfortunately I don't own Darling Girl's London Calling, which is probably a much closer dupe than Blue Flame, now that I've seen all of these things in real life.)
I Understood that Reference doesn't come off at its best in these photos, but it's the closest dupe, though there are differences. IUtR's blue base is more of a Captain America blue, while Mephisto's is darker, inkier. IUtR has a redder sheer that comes off subtler, while Mephisto's is brighter by virtue of its copper leanings. IUtR also has silvery-white sparkles, which are hard to capture on camera but an obvious difference in real life.
Here's a closer look at IUtR (left sides) next to Mephisto (right sides) to illustrate what I mean--they're very similar but the differences I've noted are there.
It's probably pointless for me to own both of these, but I love Captain America, so oh well!
The other dupes are...not so close.
|Our friendly neighbourhood arm, titled to show some sheen.|
I expected The Grand Empress to be very similar to Mephisto--the website swatch definitely is--but nope.
As is evident, Notoriously Morbid's The Grand Empress (second from top) is much darker than Mephisto. Mephisto's blue base is spilled BIC pen ink-blue, while Empress' base is more of an inky blue-black. Mephisto's sheen is coppery-red, while Empress' sheen leans browner, sort of a coppery-bronze. The Grand Empress is gorgeous, probably boss for a smoky eye look (especially for brown eyes, I think) but not as Mephisto-y as the website swatch led me to believe.
A note on The Grand Empress: much as I found with NM's Boca del Infierno, this shadow is super pigmented. It came out this way in one patting-on. You are winning me over quickly, NM.
|One of these things is not like the other.|
Last but not least--Blue Flame isn't anywhere near close to a dupe. It is, however, jaw-droppingly beautiful. Buy it anyway. Here it is next to The Grand Empress--though they are both definitely Not Mephisto, their duochromes are beautiful.
|Empress left, Blue Flame right. Not dupes, but I LOVE THEM FOR WHO THEY ARE.|
The one other thing I'll say about Blue Flame: while most of these come off almost as well over NYX Milk as over Glitter Glue, Blue Flame is 100% prettier over GG, so if you're going to purchase from Darling Girl and pick this up anyway, grab Glitter Glue. I definitely made a mess of it in my first couple of patchy swatches, but as you can see from these two, I learned quickly!
Some good news: none of these eyeshadows are limited edition and none of them cost more than $6.25 for a full size. I would recommend them all--but um, Blue Flame especially because damn.