Friday, January 3rd, 2014

Guerlain Star Dust (862) Le Vernis Nail Lacquer
Guerlain Star Dust (862) Le Vernis Nail Lacquer

Guerlain Star Dust (862) Le Vernis Nail Lacquer ($25.00 for 0.33 fl. oz.) is described as an “iridescent ray of pure light.” Guerlain goes on to describe it as a “top coat [that] work[s] to enhance color, adding diamond shine.” (Said of both this polish as well as the gloss, which is the same color.) It’s a pearly, iridescent mix of silver and white that flashes blue and green that’s sparkling and shining. I don’t have anything that’s quite like this, particularly because it flashes a green-ish blue. Anna Sui Minnie Mouse Snow White (002) (LE, $16.00) is warmer and has flecks of glitter. Tom Ford Beauty Vapour (LE, $30.00) is more metallic. MAC Much Adored (LE, $16.00) is warmer and pinker. Dior Lady (LE, $26.00) is more metallic. China Glaze Frosty (LE, $7.50) is more silvered. See comparison swatches.

This might be too pigmented, or not pigmented enough, depending on your goal. Worn alone, two coats gives it semi-sheer coverage, which seems to be in line with what Guerlain was going for if this is also intended to be used as a top coat. One coat layered over a solid base color had an interesting mix of results. I tried it over a dark blue to so-so results, three coats of it alone (still somewhat sheer), one coat over black (less impressive), and one coat over red (best results). As a layering top coat, it’s almost too pigmented at times and seems to do best over light and medium colors, rather than anything really dark (like black) didn’t work as well. I found myself being particularly careful with just how much product was on the brush before layering over anything. On the other hand, if you love sheer, pearlescent shades, this might be a winner. The way it sparkles and shimmers in the light was lovely. It had a slightly thicker consistency, and the shimmer seemed to spread evenly overall whether applied alone or as a top coat. It dried down to a naturally high-shine finish.

The Glossover

LE
product

Star Dust (862)

B

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Friday, January 3rd, 2014

Guerlain Meteorites Powder Brush
Guerlain Meteorites Powder Brush

Guerlain Meteorites Powder Brush ($42.00) is described as having “long, soft bristles designed to take in only the exact quantity of Meteorites Pearls needed for each application and distribute them evenly.” It is a short-handled, large, long powder brush. The brush head is just shy of 2 inches (or 5 centimeters) in length, 1.5 inches (4 centimeters) in width. The brush has a total length of 4.5 inches or just over 11 centimeters with an open ferrule. Despite having a longer length, it doesn’t feel floppy. It is a dense brush–not as dense as a buffer or kabuki brush but denser than a some blush brushes. shu uemura’s 18R is similar but slightly narrower in width.

The brush fits well into the opening of the Meteorites Pearls, and it would easily reach the bottom of the container, should one ever get low on their Meteorites Pearls. I don’t have the previous version of the brush (which may be a surprise to some!), so I can’t remark on whether this is improved or not. According to Guerlain, the new brush is “longer and softer.” I tried using this brush to apply the Meteorites Pearls, but I just don’t like the texture of the bristles–they’re noticeably scratchy unless you use the lightest, most feathery touch, but it’s not nearly as soft as many other powder/blush brushes I own (Bobbi Brown, Hakuhodo, Make Up For Ever, Real Techniques, shu uemura, and so on). It applied the right amount of product, though I did not have any trouble using my preferred brush (Hakuhodo J104) and applying the right quantity either. There were a few bristles that shed the first time I used it (after washing it once), but I didn’t notice any additional shedding after that. I can’t comment on durability/longevity, as I haven’t had this brush for long.

The Glossover

product

Meteorites Powder Brush

I tried using this brush to apply the Meteorites Pearls, but I just don't like the texture of the bristles--they're noticeably scratchy unless you use the lightest, most feathery touch, but it's not nearly as soft as many other powder/blush brushes I own (Bobbi Brown, Hakuhodo, Make Up For Ever, Real Techniques, shu uemura, and so on).
Results
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Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

Guerlain Two VIP (09) Eyeshadow Duo
Guerlain Two VIP (09) Eyeshadow Duo

Guerlain Two VIP (09) Eyeshadow Duo ($44.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a new and limited eyeshadow duo for spring. Guerlain’s duos feature one shade that is a “luminous veil with a glittering or metallic finish” and a “pure matte.” One is a sheer, sparkling shade, the other is a more intense, matte shade. According to the brand, they can be worn together, layered, or one at a time–you know, however you want. The texture of the purple shade (which is the “luminous veil” color) was oddly gritty–there were flecks and specks of purple that wouldn’t blend out, and yet, they weren’t glitters, but they felt like gritty or dry powdery bits. It was a strange experience, but it occurred when swatching and later on when I applied it to the lid. To make it a bittersweet duo, the matte shade was insanely soft, blendable, and pigmented.

Two VIP #1 is described as a “dazzling violet.” It’s a cool-toned, medium violet purple with lilac and violet sparkle and shimmer. It has an almost wet-look when applied, as it glimmers. The texture was somewhat stiff, and when I was working with it on the lid, it wasn’t very blendable. I had trouble getting it to layer over the matte shade as well. Beyond that, there was a noticeable grittiness to it that wasn’t just sparkle but almost like clumps of powder (but more like speck-size, not giant, clumps), but it was like the texture was balling up and flaking away in part. The color payoff was definitely sheer and was in keeping with the “luminous veil” concept. Though hard to work with in general, there was only minor fall out (and less fall out than anticipated with a shade as sparkly as this one) after eight hours. theBalm A2 (LE, $16.00) is less sparkly. Urban Decay Betrayal (LE, $18.00) is lighter. Illamasqua Trance (LE) is less sparkly, cream. Urban Decay Omen (P, $18.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Butterfly Party (LE, $32.50) is warmer, darker. See comparison swatches.

Two VIP #2 is described as an “elegant taupe.” It’s a cool-toned, medium-dark taupe with a heavy gray influence and a matte finish. It was incredibly, richly pigmented, and the texture was divine; so soft, smooth, buttery, and blendable. This shade wore well for a full eight hours. bareMinerals Head Over Heels (LE) is warmer. MAC Smoked Cocoa #2 (LE, $15.00) is lighter. MAC Tailor Grey (P, $18.50) is warmer, cream product. Maybelline Tough as Taupe (P, $6.99) is darker, cream product. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

palette

Two VIP (09)

B

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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LE
product

Two VIP #1

C-

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

5.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

Two VIP #2

A

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes

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Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

Guerlain Clair (02) Meteorites Pearls
Guerlain Clair (02) Meteorites Pearls

Guerlain Clair (02) Meteorites Pearls ($60.00 for 0.88 oz.) is described as a “harmony of green … white … and champagne pearls.” Clair (02) contains “green pearls for extra redness correction,” along with “white pearls to reflect the light” and “champagne pearls to adapt to the skin and gently illuminate it.” It also contains three colors that are the base of all the Meteorites (mauve, pink, and yellow). In general, this combination of colors and the way the powder swatches and applies to the skin, it seemed rather brightening. It softened the look of skin (primarily by smoothing out pores), brightened, and added a very, very subtle radiance.

The effect is lovely, and I’ve been a long-time fan of the Meteorites range; as they always improve the look of the skin and making skin appear healthier, more radiant, smoother, and lovelier.  It works best as a finishing powder–it’s not a traditional highlighter, and it’s not a setting powder.  If you use a setting powder or more matte foundation, finishing powders help to add back some of the luminosity that gets lost by a more matte finish without leaving the skin looking too dewy.  If you go on in wanting something to highlight cheek bones and high planes of the face, you’ll be disappointed. This gets dusted all-over the face.  I would say skip the Meteorites brush; I will do a review of the revamped brush released for spring later on, but in short, it’s unnecessary for applying Meteorites, and I thought it was a little rough/scratchy.

Guerlain has re-released their famous Meteorites Pearls with their Meteorites Blossom Collection. The formula and packaging have both undergone a revamp. The tin has the same size, shape, and feel as the last iteration released in 2010–the embellishments and patterns are different. The formula is supposed to have “softer” pearls that “allow for an even easier application and a more visible effect with every brush stroke.” There are three shades, this one, along with Medium (03) and Dore (04). I only have Clair (02), but I wasn’t able to find any noticeable or visible differences (for better or worse).

This seems to replace Teint Rose. Worth noting is that they were previously priced at $58 and contained 1.05 oz. and now are $60 a pop and only 0.88 oz., which is a squeeze on both ends. I didn’t notice any difference between Clair (02) and Teint Rose; the texture, feel, appearance–all the same. In general, Meteorites, once applied, tend to look more similar than not. On very fair skin, any differences may be more amplified but still quite subtle, and on deeper skin tones, any of the more brightening shades may have a tendency to look chalky or ashy.

The Glossover

P
product

Clair (02)

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

Guerlain Cherry (02) Meteorites Bubble Blush
Guerlain Cherry (02) Meteorites Bubble Blush

Guerlain Cherry (02) Meteorites Bubble Blush ($42.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “cheerful fuchsia.” It’s a cool-toned, blue-based fuchsia magenta with a satin finish. Urban Decay Quickie (LE) is lighter, powder. NARS Desire (P, $29.00) is brighter, powder. NARS Angelika (P, $29.00) is similar but powder. MAC Peony Petal (LE, $21.00) is lighter, bluer-based, powder. MAC I’m the One (LE, $21.00) is lighter, powder. MAC Florida (LE, $21.00) is slightly more magenta. See comparison swatches.

It’s a new–but limited edition–formula in Guerlain’s Meteorites Blossom Collection. It’s described as having a “satiny finish with a delicate violet scent.” It’s supposed to “instantly melt into [the] skin.” It’s housed in a small “bubble” with a rounded top but flat bottom. The first thing I noticed about it was actually the packaging, as it felt a somewhat cheap–it’s definitely not as luxe or as fancy as Guerlain’s palettes and lipsticks. It almost looks like a lip balm. I was able to use a small stippling brush (MAC 188) to grab color to apply to the cheeks, even though the whole blush is on the small side.

The pigmentation is more on the intense side, though it is blendable and buildable, so a little tap of product can go a long way, depending on how you like to wear your blush. It applied best over bare skin, though lightly patted and blended over not-quite-dry liquid foundation (I used Guerlain’s Parure de Lumiere) worked fairly well. The blush feels and looks more like a powder once applied, as there is no dewiness, and it sets and stays in place shortly after application. When I wore this, it lasted well for almost eight hours before showing signs of fading.

The Glossover

LE
product

Cherry (02)

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, December 31st, 2013

2013 was good year for lipsticks, particularly if you loved yours bold, bright, and/or matte. There were new formulas to fall in love with, and plenty of new and limited shades released from my favorite formulas. This was a tough list to compile! Because I really do believe variety is the spice of life, I tried to pick across a variety of formulas!

What lipsticks did you fall in love with this past year?