Saturday, December 11th, 2010


Giorgio Armani Spring 2011 Collection: Transluminence

Giorgio Armani introduces colours of nature, awakened by the morning light.

Light and nature are two major themes that have infused Giorgio Armani’s aesthetic and vision of makeup since its creation.

The Armani makeup collection for spring 2011 plays with transparency to ignite a woman’s face. Bright colours that allow infinite layering and blending create a new landscape of tones. There is a new smoky look for the eyes produced with radiant colours. From soft to dramatic, the look seen at the Armani spring/summer 2011 fashion show was a fresh interpretation of “La Femme Bleue”.

This season the must-have look utilises a perfect harmony of diaphanous forest green and purple iris on eyes, contrasted with frozen pink light on skin and lips. The inspiration: fresh morning dew on a wild bunch of flowers.

Makeup artist Linda Cantello, who worked on the Armani spring/summer 2011 fashion show, says: “Imagine the richest purple and the deepest green both enlivened by a frozen silver. A soft black completes the palette, to be worn alone as liner or to add depth to smoky eyes. Freshened by the softest baby lips, a beautiful frosty blush completes this new way of facing spring in the depths of winter.”

Transluminence Eye Palette ($58.00)

Blend and layer the four full, rich, colour-intense translucent tones. Apply rich purple iris with an eye brush to the eyelid and add dewy forest green. These will fuse together into a vibrant blue turquoise. Render the effect even more luminous with a layer of frozen silver. Open up the eye with a touch of silver on the inside corner. Outline the under eye or the eyelid with soft black eye colour, applied wet or dry.

Transluminence Face Palette ($49.00)

Sculpt the face with frost bitten Sheer Translucent Blush presented in the spring signature face palette.

Rouge d’Armani ($30.00)

  • Dawn Pink (518)
  • Early Morning Rose (508)
  • Petal Pink (503)

Availability: giorgioarmanibeauty.com and at Armani Fifth Avenue and select fine department stores, including Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales, Nordstrom and Barneys in Spring 2011

Friday, November 19th, 2010


Giorgio Armani Holiday 2010: Gold Rush Collection

Giorgio Armani Cosmetics celebrates the holiday season with the exclusive Gold Rush Collection. This season’s ‘must have’, the Gold Rush Palette is an all over gold platinum topcoat that sublimates the eyes, lips and skin with a touch of elegant Armani glamour.

Gold Rush Palette ($55.00) (Limited Edition)

A soft, universal beige, sheer, shimmer powder that lights up the face and décolleté with an irresistible gold cut glow. The sleek, pale gold and black lacquered signature compact adds a sparkling note to this seductive collection.

Rouge d’Armani Gold Rush ($30.00) (Limited Edition)

  • 404 Bright, coral red
  • 517 Fuchsia
  • 405 Tibetan orange

Availability: Now

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Monday, October 11th, 2010


Lipstick Comparisons: $26 to $34 (Part 2)

Though often lumped into high-end, this is a tier made up of designer brands like Chanel, Dior, and YSL. Most higher-end/designer lipsticks are scented, usually with floral or fruit. Rose seems to be the most prevalent scent found in brands across the board; sometimes it’s subtle (Chanel), while other times it’s heavy (Dolce & Gabbana). I find designer range lipsticks to be non-drying to moisturizing with more opaque formulas overall. Packaging is often nicer, but it’s not always the case and is, inevitably, very personal.

Giorgio Armani Rouge d’Armani Lipstick ($30.00)

  • PROS: Creamy, semi-opaque to opaque, long-wearing (4 to 6 hours)
  • NEUTRAL: 0.14 oz., scent-free, somewhat moisturizing
  • CONS: May feather/bleed on slightly dry to dry lips
  • MY REC: I don’t find them super moisturizing, though they don’t dry lips out. Typically, I don’t find lipsticks bleed on me easily, but I did have some issues with this one feathering on me when I tested them originally (my lips were a bit drier than they normally are during those tests). Like Burberry lipsticks, there is a magnetic clasp that keeps the lid on.

Guerlain KissKiss Lipstick ($31.00)

  • PROS: Creamy, glossy finish, moisturizing, smooth, opaque, wears for an average of 4 hours
  • NEUTRAL: 0.12 oz., fruit-scented
  • CONS: Basic shade range of pinks/reds
  • MY REC: After being spoiled by Guerlain’s Rouge G lipstick line, despite being $16 more, I feel like if I’m going to go Guerlain, I better go Rouge G. KissKiss is actually a nice formula on its own; it’s creamy, usually pigmented, and moisturizing enough for normal to dry lips.

Lancome L’Absolu Rouge Lipstick ($29.00)

  • PROS: Creamy, opaque, moisturizing, long-wearing (4 to 6 hours), minimizes lip lines
  • NEUTRAL: 0.14 oz, rose-scented
  • CONS: Mostly cream/satin finishes
  • MY REC: I love how creamy it is without being slippery; it won’t slide all over the place, so it actually wears well and on the longer side. It is also a bit pricier than other Lancome lipsticks, which makes it it their top tier lipstick, but at least they give you 0.14 oz., while the average lipstick is 0.12 oz.

YSL Rouge Volupte Lipstick ($34.00)

  • PROS: Creamy, opaque, good shade range, moisturizing, wears an average of 4 hours
  • NEUTRAL: 0.12 oz., mango-scented
  • CONS: Slippery, shades can be stark, heavy
  • MY REC: YSL has expanded their Rouge Volupte line quite a bit since I originally reviewed the range, and more importantly, I’ve expanded the range of lipsticks I’ve tested as well. I actually find these don’t wear as well as other lipsticks–they’re just too slippery. It’s moisturizing but not overly so, but it is also one of the heavier lipsticks I’ve worn. If your lips are prone to bleeding, you might experience that with the darker shades, since it has a lot of slip.

YSL Gloss Volupte Lipstick ($30.00)

  • PROS: Creamy, sheer (supposed to be), glossy finish
  • NEUTRAL: 0.07 oz., mango-scented
  • CONS: Not very moisturizing, requires frequent reapplication
  • MY REC: Apparently, I’ve never done an official review for this, but I distinctly remember being unimpressed by it. It’s a very sheer formula, which is fine, but I didn’t even see any color on my lips, which goes beyond sheer to me. My lips felt drier after wearing this, and I found myself having to reapply every hour or two. Also, did you note how little you get for $30?

The Lipstick Comparisons series is designed to provide a quick reference summary sheet for some of the many available lipstick formulas. It seems like most brands have at least a couple of formulas, if not half a dozen, and it can be difficult to find the formulas that will work best for your budget, coloring, style, or taste.

This is not necessarily a best of list, and it’s not exhaustive–it is based on actual lipsticks that I’ve tried; they are all, however, decent to excellent lipsticks. (And perhaps, some day, it will be an exhaustive list.) I have summarized my experience based on pros and cons, but also some “neutral” factors that may be pros or cons, depending on your preferences. I will update this series as I try new lipstick formulas.

Saturday, August 21st, 2010

Giorgio Armani Night Shades Collection for Fall 2010

The new fall dress code for Giorgio Armani is “nocturnal”.

Inspired by the deep blue tones of the night, Giorgio Armani explores for fall a new landscape of night shades.

From cold blue to sophisticated pink tones and warm crimson berry.

The new nocturnal chic.

Night Shades Eyeshadow Palette

Star product of the season, the quad palette shades continue the narrative of Armani elegance with shimmering colors of the night. The palette offers a beautiful selection of color harmonies inspired by the dark shades of a nocturnal landscape delicately lit by moonlight.

Eyes to Kill Palette

  • Palette 10 — Twilight Hues (Pure Mauve — Satin; Ink Black — Satin; Aubergine Purple — Metallic)

Eyes to Kill Mascara

  • No. 5 Blue grey

Rouge d’Armani

  • No. 604 Deep ruby
  • No. 602 Soft pink
  • No. 603 Black purple

Lip Skin

  • No. 1 Black purple
  • No. 2 Lavish red
  • No. 3 Sharp pink
  • No. 4 Nude Rose

Blush Duo

Extremely light and soft Microfil™ duo sheer blush in two special shades of shimmering pale and dark raspberry, in perfect harmony with the collection, adds shadow and a light touch of color to the cheeks.

Availability: Now

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Wednesday, December 9th, 2009


Giorgio Armani #600 Rouge d’Armani Lipstick

Venturing Into Plums:  Giorgio Armani #600

Giorgio Armani #600 Rouge d’Armani Lipstick ($30.00) is a fuchsia-plum shade in Giorgio Armani’s new long-wearing lipstick formula. The formula is supposed to deliver up to eight hours of wear-time without fading or feathering while feeling moisturizing.

Previously, I reviewed #401, which is more of an orange-based red (more orange than red, I’d say, though) — and the shade didn’t suit me personally, so it was onto the next… #600 is certainly a shade much more up my alley! It’s a bright plummy shade (which is why I’d describe it as a fuchsia-plum) that’s not so bright it’s hard to wear, but bright enough that it can be worn alone or as the star feature of a look.

On my lips, it certainly hugs and adheres to them – looks like it’s natural and yet obviously not (since it’s clearly a brightened up pucker!). It has a very glossy sheen and full color coverage. I initially thought it might be a little sheer, since the swatch wasn’t quite as opaque as it was with #401, but it proved me wrong once I applied it to my lips.

It’s definitely hydrating and wears well — I don’t know about a full eight hours, but I get around five or six, which is good enough for me. It’ll hold on decently through some drinking and a bit of eating, but I didn’t get stellar results through a full meal myself.

I found myself liking this shade much more than #401, and I was happy to see that it wears very similar to #401 as well (reds tend to wear the longest and best, because they’re so deep and richly pigmented!). I’m also still digging the packaging – there’s a magnetic clasp that keeps it locked into place.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: Looking for a plum with a lil’ kick? #600 might be it!

Availability: Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue

See swatches… Continue reading →

Sunday, October 25th, 2009

Giorgio Armani #401 Rouge d’Armani Lipstick ($30.00) is the newest long-wear lipstick formula from Armani, only recently released last month. The new formula is available in eighteen shades, ranging from beiges to pinks to reds to browns. According to Giorgio Armani, Rouge d’Armani is designed to be a hydrating, long-wearing lipstick that lasts for “up to eight hours without fading or feathering,” as well as give lips “continuous hydration” for up to six hours.

I tested out #401, which is an orange-based red and made famous by songstress Rihanna. The lipstick feels like a dream when you first apply it – it’s lightweight, creamy, and the color is fairly opaque. I did find that it feathered/bled a bit when my lips were more on the drier side (a terrible side-effect of getting over a flu!) and less so when my lips were more naturally hydrated. I’d basically say if you have drier lips, you’ll still need a liner to keep your red looking pristine, but if you have lips less prone to feathering, you may be able to skip that step with this formula.

The color does wear well and begins to fade after about five or six hours, or faster if I’m eating/drinking. It’s a long-wearing lipstick formula for sure, but I didn’t find it made it through a meal intact. I was able to drink a bit with minimal fading, though. Like most reds, when it does fade away, it leaves a slight reddish stain behind, which is always nice, because you don’t have to feel like you have to reapply right that very second.

The packaging is sleek and classy – all black with a magnetic clasp (so you’ll hear a “click” when it closes) and a slightly raised logo where the cap and lipstick meet. The price is a bit steeper than other Armani lipsticks (like ArmaniSilk, which is $25), but it does offer stellar color and wear-time.

Bottom Line: I’m definitely going to stop by my Giorgio Armani counter next time I’m at Nordstrom, so I can see if any of the other colors appeal to me. #401 is a bit too orange for my personal preference, so the first shade I want to see in person is #400!

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you like creamy, hydrating lipsticks with full-color pigmentation, Rouge d’Armani may be the one for you!

Availability: Nordstrom

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See more photos and swatchesContinue reading →