Monday, May 7th, 2012

Cle de Peau #2 Lipgloss
Cle de Peau #2 Lipgloss

Cle de Peau #2 Lipgloss Review, Photos, Swatches

One question I regularly receive about products (and not just luxury priced products) is, “Is it worth it?” This is also iterated in other ways, like: 1) “Do I need this?” 2) “Should I save up for this?” and 3) “Should I buy the original or the cheaper dupe?” Sometimes someone will want to be convinced to buy something, other times someone will want to be reminded that it’s totally dupeable or below-the-bar in quality. The problem with these questions is it’s really, really hard for me to tell you if a product is worth it to you or not. It’s undeniably subjective and completely based upon your budget and personal preferences!

I thought maybe it would be a good reference post going forward whenever I review a more expensive product, because “worth” and “value” are measured differently by each of us. Some of us prefer to look at how much you’re getting for the price, others look purely at the price tag because they never expect to go through a product, and others look at price per use (because you expect to use it up). I’m more in the camp of the last one–if you are only going to wear a product once or twice before moving onto something else, there’s absolutely no reason to save up for it. If you’re going to use it everyday for months, then maybe it’s worth saving up for.

From time to time, I re-review one of my all-time favorite products (and thankfully, it’s permanent!) that I continue to love each and every time I wear as much as I did the first time (and I’m often motivated to do a more thorough job reviewing the product each time and with better photos!). There are a few reasons why I love it, but they’re all personal reasons and justifications. I just re-purchased it from Saks a week or so ago.

Cle de Peau #2 Lipgloss ($48.00 for 0.21 fl. oz.) is a peach and gold shimmered peach-pink with a nearly metallic finish. It’s semi-opaque in coverage–there is a lot of shimmer in it, while the base color itself is fairly close to my natural lip color (warmer and pinker). Le Metier de Beaute Papaya Creme is the closest dupe to this shade, and it has a slightly darker color base (less pink, a little more coral), but it has a very similar shimmer component that gives off the same metallic-like finish. MAC Nymphette is sheerer, more golden (less peach), and doesn’t have nearly as much shimmer–but it is a gorgeous shade and similarly flattering. Benefit I’m With the Band is pinker, less peach, almost gold-copper in shimmer. Chanel Pin-Up is similar but has less shimmer. NARS Orgasm is also similar but lacks the heavy shimmer finish. NP Set Mauritius is milkier and a little less peach.

First and foremost, I’m absolutely in love with the color. It’s warm, peach, and gold; all shades that flatter my particular skin tone and overall coloring. It’s not sheer, but it’s not totally opaque, so it can be layered with other lipsticks but also wore on its own (I usually wear it on its own). There are, however, as you can see from above, numerous shades that are similar to this one–and for most, I suspect, similar enough to opt for a version that’s half or even a third of the price of this one. The only thing that really makes it slightly different is how much shimmer is in the gloss, and the resulting more metallic-like finish (which Papaya Creme also has but the base color is a wee different, though not by much–and still $12 cheaper).

The texture is lightweight and comfortable to wear without being too thin or too thick; it doesn’t slip around once applied, but it doesn’t cling. It’s non-sticky, and there was no discernible scent or taste. I love that it wears five to six hours on me, and it fades evenly and none of the shimmer (and there’s a lot of it!) travels while it’s worn. The formula is moisturizing and never leaves my lips feeling dehydrated, even after wearing it all day.  It’s not my favorite gloss formula of all time, but it’s a really good one (though I haven’t tried many other shades beyond #2–I can’t even remember trying another shade on).  If it was a poorly made gloss with a stellar color, I would probably end up moving to a dupe with a better formula and only keep my original tube as nostalgia.

I imagine part of the love for this particular gloss is attached to memories; my first luxury cosmetic purchase, which was part souvenir (at my first Barney’s, which was in Vegas) and part reward, and one of those products that has endured over time. It doesn’t matter if others think it’s a waste of money or hate the color or don’t think it’s worth that much–my enjoyment is not dependent on others loving it.  Every time I apply this gloss, I smile. My spirits rise.  I get a little giddy.  I remember the very moment I swatched this and saw the crazy peach-gold duochrome and fell in love and indulged.

One thing that you’ll notice is I’m careful about saying what is and isn’t my favorite. There are lots of products I like and even love, but there are less products I consider true favorites–ones I go back to, ones I would repurchase, ones that I would use over and over again if I was a normal consumer.  So when I say something is my favorite, I say it with feeling.

There are a handful of lip products that I always reach for when I travel, this being one of them (others include Chanel Dragon–my power red–and a Guerlain Rouge G, which usually fluctuates between Garconne, Gems, and Ginny at the moment). This also has a permanent home in my purse (along with Jack Black Lip Balm), and if I don’t have a product I’m testing along with me and the product I was originally testing has worn off, I reach for this.

Is there a beauty product that holds a special place in your heart?

The Glossover

coming-soon

The Million Dollar "Is it worth it?" Question

A-
It's my favorite gloss for a few reasons, and it's a good gloss overall--it's not the best gloss formula of all time. What sold me originally was the color, and what keeps me sold is the total package plus the back story and the "meaning" of the gloss to me. There are several dupes worth considering at a more wallet-friendly price, though!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Cle de Peau R9 (Comtesse de Cayla) Extra Rich Lipstick
Cle de Peau R9 (Comtesse de Cayla) Extra Rich Lipstick

Cle de Peau R9 (Comtesse de Cayla) Extra Rich Lipstick

Cle de Peau R9 (Comtesse de Cayla) Extra Rich Lipstick ($60.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a light-medium coral with a hint of pink and soft rose micro-shimmer. Guerlain Jicky is sheerer and a bit darker, less coral. MAC Mellowarm is a darker, browner version. Chanel Chalys is a bit more orange and darker. Chanel Libertine is similar. Lancome Stylista is slightly pinker. MAC Razzledazzler is pinker. Burberry Devon Sunset is pretty close, creamier rather than shimmery. MAC So Vain is a touch pinker and lighter.

The texture of Comtesse de Cayla is soft, creamy, and very lightweight–for such a creamy consistency, it’s surprisingly light on the lips. There’s opaque color payoff with a single pass of the lipstick, which is easily applied as it glides on like softened butter. The shimmer is very fine, so it doesn’t look frosted or metallic on the lips–it is a more forgiving finish and texture on lips with more lines, dryness, and the like.  When I tested this shade for wear, it wore for five hours and lost some of the glossiness in the natural finish after three and a half.  It was in need of a full reapplication after six and a half hours.

Cle de Peau advertises that there are “skincare benefits” in the formula, and while I can’t attest to that, given that I cannot commit to a single formula for six weeks to trial it, I can weigh-in on the short-term benefits like de-emphasis of lip lines (softened after ten to fifteen minutes of wear) and intense hydration. There are a lot of lipsticks that keep lips hydrated while you wear them to the point where your lips are no worse for the wear after they’ve faded, but there are fewer formulas that leave your lips feeling more hydrated than they were when you first applied the product.

One of the more frequent questions I’ll receive from readers whenever I post about a luxury product is, “Is it worth it?” The answer is really going to depend on you: your preferences, budget, and how much you love what you already have. My answer is always yes and no; yes, it’s absolutely worth it if it’s going to be a shade that you reach for, wear, and love every time you apply it, but no, not if you buy it and never wear it. I just repurchased Cle de Peau’s #2 Lipgloss (my all-time favorite gloss color), which is beautiful and lovely in every way, suits my coloring, and is one of the few glosses I’ll wear alone. What I can tell you is that the Extra Rich formula is fantastic–you are, at the very least, getting a high quality product.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Cle de Peau R9 (Comtesse de Cayla) Extra Rich Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

A
It's every bit a luxury product--it feels lightweight, silky soft, and applies beautifully with rich color payoff, flattering undertones across skin tones, and is one of the most hydrating formulas on the market. Whether it's worth it is part of each individual's justification/rationalization process, but I can at least tell you that you're getting a high quality product.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

Cle de Peau Beauty Secret (R7) Extra Rich Lipstick
Cle de Peau Beauty Secret (R7) Extra Rich Lipstick

Cle de Peau Beauty Secret (R7) Extra Rich Lipstick

Cle de Peau Beauty Secret (R7) Extra Rich Lipstick ($60.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a rich coral-brown with a natural sheen and hint of shimmer. It’s more of a muted coral that doesn’t have the level of warmth that many corals have. Dior Versailles has a similar coral-brown-like base, but it has a lot of golden shimmer, so it appears lighter. MAC Mellowarm is reminiscent of this shade but with more orange. Cle de Peau #114 is slightly more orange, but it’s somewhat similar. Burberry Blush is pinker.

The color coverage is opaque in a single pass–no building required–and the lipstick’s consistency is soft and creamy, so it glides on easily. What I’ve always loved about the Extra Rich formula is the hydration; these wear four to six hours (this one wears five) and my lips always feel better after wearing these. After ten to fifteen minutes of wear, this does seem to soften lip lines. I’m really sensitive to lip plumpers, but I never have issues with these. Cle de Peau says that there are “skincare benefits” included in the formula, but I’ve never worn one for six weeks straight to tell you if there are any long-term benefits.

Cle de Peau is a luxury beauty brand, so it’s not positioned to be affordable. The formula is excellent; the lipstick is comfortable to wear, yields full-color coverage, hydrates, and wears longer than average. Whether it’s worth the luxury price tag is up to you and your justification/rationalization process. For me, it’s a treat; this is the type of product you reward yourself with–maybe for that tough contract you negotiated, recent raise you received, graduating school–and something you’re absolutely in love with. You don’t buy this just to buy a color; you buy it because it’s one of those ultra flattering shades on you.

It took me years to learn the lesson: quality over quantity; buy one lipstick you’ll love wearing everyday rather than five that you wear once or twice a year. A good friend of mine always looks at “cost per use” when it comes to her makeup buying decisions. She won’t shell out big bucks for a shade she knows she’ll never feel comfortable wearing, but she will on something she knows she’ll use for weeks on end.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Cle de Peau Beauty Secret (R7) Extra Rich Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

A
It's an excellent formula--great color payoff, wear, feel, consistency--but it certainly comes at the top of the price range. Worth splurging on if it's just the right shade of coral you've been looking for, though!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Cle de Peau #129 Extra Silky Lipstick
Cle de Peau #129 Extra Silky Lipstick

Cle de Peau #129 Extra Silky Lipstick

Cle de Peau #129 Extra Silky Lipstick ($52.00 for 0.07 oz.) is a soft, yellow-toned pink with very fine pale peach-gold micro-shimmer and a glossy sheen. It’s such a soft color, but the color payoff is almost opaque–you can just barely see the shadow of my lip freckle. Dior Pinky Mauve is a bit darker. Estee Lauder Night Bloom is similar but pinker. Maybelline Warm Me Up is a bit darker and grayer. MAC Angel is pinker and has a creamier look. Urban Decay Naked is a darker pinker.

I’m a big fan of the Extra Silky Lipstick range; it’s lightweight, hydrating, and feels and looks incredible on. With lighter shades like #129, it wears for around four hours, but I have had longer wear (more like six or so) with some of the darker shades–about average for lipsticks for me. This formula is very, very emollient and creamy, so I recommend applying less than you think you need, because otherwise you’ll overapply. It doesn’t look bad, but you’ll waste product and at this price point (and for the quantity you get–about 30% less than the average lipstick), you don’t want to waste any! These are also scent- and taste-free from my experience.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Cle de Peau #129 Extra Silky Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I love how creamy and moisturizing these lipsticks are, and I'm always surprised how much color they impart, because they seem so soft at first, but they really do deliver on pigmentation, too.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011


Holiday Gift Guide: Must-Have Beauty Products for Lips

One of the things I am most thankful for is that by becoming a beauty blogger and having the opportunity to try so may different products is that it’s opened up my eyes to how many fantastic brands and formulas there are. Not every brand does everything perfectly, and there are a lot of great formulas that are just varying degrees of great. Picking a favorite really comes down to a less quantifiable factor, I think. It might be the color range, packaging, scent, or the overall feel. These are all lip products I personally recommend from brands’ permanent ranges.

Lip Balms/Treatments

  • Kiehl’s #1 Lip Balm ($7.00) is nice for those who prefer a thinner balm with no shine. It’s very, very slick and thin on the lips, but it does a good job at moisturizing.
  • Jack Black Lip Therapy Lip Balm ($7.50) is my all-time favorite lip balm, and I have them all over the house–at my desk, purse, pocket, nightstand–and a stock pile of them in reserve. So, so hydrating and comfortable to wear. My favorite flavor is Lemon & Chamomile, with Original as a runner-up.
  • Philosophy Lip Shines ($10.00) are kind of a balm, kind of a lip balm; because they tend to run so sheer and have the thicker feel of a balm, I’m going to go with it as a lip balm! I like that they’re fragranced with Philosophy’s signature scents plus have some shimmer and shine.
  • Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment ($22.50) is a decadent balm that works well but wears away quickly–I like the product, not so much the price tag and how quickly it finishes, though! They do have tinted versions, though, and they’re some of the better lip stains because they’re more hydrating, but they are prone to uneven fading.
  • Sara Happ The Lip Scrub ($24.00) is my favorite lip scrub, because it holds together well, exfoliates lips, and leaves them feeling soft and moisturized.
  • Guerlain Terracotta Baume Au Couer Lip Balm ($30.00) is tinted and feels like butter on lips; it wears for a few hours before disappearing, but it’s moisturizing the entire time.
  • La Mer The Lip Balm ($45.00) is probably the priciest lip balm I’ve ever used, but it really does work well. It hydrates lips while still wearing well (you won’t have to reapply every hour).

Lipsticks

  • CoverGirl Lip Perfection ($6.99) is really rich in color, glides on easily, and wears for hours. The downside is the scent, so if you’re super sensitive to smells, you might look elsewhere, but these perform well overall.
  • Maybelline ColorSensational Lipsticks ($8.29) is a good go-to for a more affordable lipstick brand, and of course, like other drugstore brands, you can catch it on sale for much less than $8 a pop. I find the creamier shades are the best!
  • MAC Lipsticks ($14.50) straddle that price point that doesn’t quite break the bank, feels a little more high-end than some drugstore brands, and is an all-around good formula. Their range is one of the most extensive that I know of, and with that, does come some inconsistency–not every single shade is as great as the last, but they do have several favorites. Some of these include Angel, Russian Red, Girl About Town, Crosswires, Sweetie, Cosmo, Plumful, and Media–just to scratch the surface.
  • Korres Mango Butter Lipsticks ($18.00) are lightweight, comfortable to wear, and come with a fairly glossy finish and semi-sheer color. Shades like Natural Pink and Natural Purple are really easy to wear.
  • Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Colors ($23.00) are long-wearing, opaque, and comfortable to wear. For cooler skin tones, try Bare Pink, Cosmic Raspberry, and Mod Pink. For warmer skin tones, try Cosmic Raspberry, Soft Coral, and Sweet Nectar.
  • Giorgio Armani Rouge d’Armani Lipsticks ($30.00) are creamy, moisturizing, and long-wearing while delivering good color coverage in over forty different shades. Shades like #400, 402, 501, and 506 are really easy to wear on most skin tones.
  • Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipsticks ($30.00) are rich in color and long on wear. For cooler complexions, I think shades like Ballet, Edition, and Fresco would work. For warmer complexions, try Edition, Muse, and Whisper.
  • Dior Rouge Dior Lip Colors ($32.00) is long-wearing and moisturizing with a wide range of shades. For warmer complexions, I recommend shades like Pink Songe, Andalouse, and Red Muse. For cooler complexions, I recommend Pink Caprice, Devilish Pink, and Daisy Plum.
  • Guerlain Rouge Automatique Lipsticks ($35.00) come really close to the Rouge G formula, but they are slightly less creamy, sometimes less opaque, and a smidgen less hydrating. They are really close but there is a noticeable difference on lips. I still really love the formula, though! For cooler complexions, I recommend Samsara, Cherry Blossom, and Champs Elysees. For warmer complexions, I recommend Violette de Mad, Rouge d’Enfer, and Coque d’Or.
  • Guerlain Rouge G Lipsticks ($47.00) is my all-time favorite lipstick formula, because it’s long-wearing, opaque, moisturizing, and the color range is really nuanced. For cooler complexions, I like Galia, Greta, Gabrielle, and Grenade. For warmer complexions, I like Galante, Gala, Gipsy, and Ginger.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Extra Silky Lipstick ($52.00) feels like glossy silk on the lips; it’s super moisturizing and has a glossy shine. It wears well on me, too, despite how creamy it is. The shade range is really wearable and mostly universal, too.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Extra Rich Lipstick ($60.00) is a decadent formula that’s rich in color, comfortable to wear, long-wearing, and has a formula that helps to plump and fill lip lines giving lips a smoother look. It’s totally over the top, but it’s an excellent formula, so you’re not just paying for brand name/packaging here.

Lipglosses

  • Revlon Super Lustrous Lipglosses ($6.99) is a budget-friendly shimmery gloss that’s mostly sheer but delivers a fair amount of sparkle and dazzle. Like other sheer formulas, the range should work across skin tones.
  • Korres Cherry Oil Lipglosses ($17.00) are hydrating and comfortable tow ear, and about half the range delivers richer color, while others are sheerer (and are described as such). My favorites are #52, #52, and #22.
  • Make Up For Ever Lab Shine Lipglosses ($18.00) is a really wide range of glosses with three different finishes. I really like how Make Up For Ever has expansive color options for most of their products, and the lipgloss range is no exception.
  • Illamasqua Intense Lipglosses ($20.00) are a total must if you or someone you know loves opaque lipglosses–these are really rich in pigment, comfortable wear, long-wearing, and have a beautiful glossy shine. I recommend virtually all of them, but a few of my favorites are Belladonna, Hermetic, and Move.
  • Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lipglosses ($23.00) are a new favorite for me; they’re very reminiscent of Chanel Glossimers but more affordable. Sheerer color with lots of dazzling sparkle! Because they’re on the sheerer side, the shade range is fairly universal.
  • Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lipglosses ($28.00) are super slick, comfortable to wear, and moisturizing. Some shades are sheer, some are more pigmented. Shades like Siren are beautiful and opaque with a really interesting metallic finish. Fortune is a great shade for everyone because it’s sheer and peachy-pink.
  • Giorgio Armani Gloss d’Armanis ($28.00) may not be as long-wearing as the brand claims, but a gloss that wears six hours without drying lips out while delivering good color coverage is rare. I really love this formula, despite the shortfall in wear (relative to their claim). I love shades like #401, 402, 404, and 505.
  • Chanel Glossimers ($28.50) are a classic gloss for someone who loves lots of shimmer and glossiness. These took me awhile to appreciate, but they really do shine and sparkle. These days, most shades are sheer, so they should flatter the full spectrum of skin tones. I really like shades such as Aurore, Coral Love, Futile, Meteore, Spark, and Sundress.
  • Le Metier de Beaute Lip Cremes ($36.00) are extremely creamy, non-sticky, and hydrating. It was one of my first high-end glosses (and probably high-end purchases in general)–who knew that $36 would become “normal” to me one day–and I absolutely love shades like Fraise Creme, Framboise Creme, and Papaye Creme.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Lipglosses ($48.00) wear longer than the average gloss, have a great shimmer and shine, and are moisturizing. May I recommend #2? It’s a total staple for me.

What are your favorite permanent lip products?

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

Cle de Peau #207 Eye Color Quad
Cle de Peau #207 Eye Color Quad

Cle de Peau #207 Eye Color Quad

Cle de Peau #207 Eye Color Quad ($55.00 for refill of 0.17 oz., $25.00 for case) is a decadent option for eyeshadow. The formula is “resistant to smudging, creasing, and fading” while “Argan Tree Oil provides smooth application and wear” as well as it contains “moisturizing Hydro-Wrap Complex.”

The product itself is embossed with muted, plum-pink iterations of their logo, and these are just an overlay, as they disappear after a use or two. I made sure to remove them from mine before swatching the colors themselves to ensure nothing altered the actual underlying colors!

My first reaction was: “WHAT ON EARTH IS THIS SILKINESS?” I felt like I had touched silk dipped in butter, because it was so soft, so smooth, and creamy (but it is a powder). I’ve tried Cle de Peau’s eyeshadow singles, and some are nice, others are so-so–but the product, while soft, felt nothing like this palette. I just stared at the compact dumbfounded when I first swatched it. I’m not easily impressed, but this really caught my attention. It was the softest eyeshadow I had ever used. The formula is soft like silk, but smooth and creamy like butter that glides across the skin and melts into it. When I wore these alone (without primer), they lasted a full ten hours without creasing, fading, or fall out.

  • The first shade is a sparkling pink champagne with silvery-white micro-glitter. It’s similar to Giorgio Armani #7, which has a more metallic finish. This shade is soft but does apply opaque–though it can be sheered out with ease. I thought it would have fall out, but I didn’t experience any when I wore it. The texture is almost like Urban Decay’s Stardust Eyeshadows but smoother.
  • The second shade is a softened, peach-beige with a bright, metallic sheen. It’s more opaque than NARS Delphes, but it is shade or so lighter and warmer than Inglot #397. This has great color payoff and an ultra-smooth texture.
  • The third shade is a gray-casted purple with a hint of blue. The finish is part shimmer, part sheen. I couldn’t think of any dupes for this one, though I looked through the blue, gray, and purple eyeshadow galleries. It has good color payoff (could be a little more rich in color), but it applied beautifully.
  • The last shade is a warm, soft gray with a shimmery finish. The only shade I could think of that was even remotely similar was theBalm Come Hither Heather, which is many shades darker. It has the same really smooth texture with a soft feel, and the pigmentation is good.

For those who might find Cle de Peau a bit out of their price range, consider purchasing the refill and storing it inside a more affordable compact (maybe a Z-palette or the like), as the pan of eyeshadows is $55, while the case is sold separately at $25. The refill makes it much more in line with Chanel, Dior, and Guerlain and may make the product more . The case is sturdy but ultimately made out of plastic. It has a large mirror inside as well as two brushes.  This is what I’ll be doing–I’m not willing to shell out $25 per compact, but I liked the quality and texture of this palette so much, I purchased two refill quads after I finished testing this one, which I’ll be sure to review once I’ve received and tested those.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Cle de Peau #207 Eye Color Quad Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I can't fathom why the compact is so costly, but the product itself stands out in texture. The colors are softer, so they are not always opaque, but those who prefer subtler looks would likely enjoy Cle de Peau's take on them. I do appreciate and like that you can purchase the product separate from the case--at least you aren't paying for packaging!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →