Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

Hourglass Nectar Extreme Sheen Lipgloss
Hourglass Nectar Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Nectar Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Nectar Extreme Sheen Lipgloss ($28.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a brightened coral with subtle pink undertones. It applies nearly opaque, but it doesn’t apply as evenly as I’d like–close but there are still a few uneven areas. It has a high gloss finish with lots of shine and gives lips a rather juicy look from the creamy finish.

my thoughts on the formula: It is such a rich, luxurious gloss that applies beautifully and evenly while delivering opaque color with very little product. The formula is thick without being goopy, non-sticky, and very moisturizing. I get three to four hours of wear. There is a light, sweet scent–reminiscent of perhaps creme brulee–that doesn’t feel overwhelming nor smell synthetic.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Unfortunately for Nectar, Siren was the first Extreme Sheen I tried and such a dazzling shade at that, I find it hard to be as enthusiastic about Nectar as I was over Siren. Personal preferences and all that, you know!  If this applied more evenly, it would have been rated higher.

where to buy: Hourglass

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011


Hourglass Aura for Spring 2011

If spring makeup is about looking effortlessly chic, then the Aura range is right on the mark. The products enhance, illuminate and highlight without color overkill. Aura boasts three swoon-worthy shades for cheeks and three for lips that all produce lighter-than-air coverage. Cheeks look as though they’ve been adorably pinched, and lips appear as they’ve been passionately kissed. “They’re a wonderful alternative to powder blushes and heavier lip products,” says Janes, “and they boast rejuvenating ingredients.” The cheek stain’s see-through color payoff is an antidote to excess glitter, while the lip stain has an on-trend, semi-matte finish. Both products can be used to simulate the 70s-inspired, Californian look seen on spring runways.

Aura Sheer Cheek Stain ($45.00)

A water-based formula with real staying power that gives cheeks a gorgeous lit-from-within glow. Aura Sheer Cheek Stain is enriched with Vitamin E to help improve skin’s moisture retention. The twist-click dispenser is equipped with a sponge applicator for ease of application. To initiate product upon first use, twist base until cheek color appears on sponge tip. Free of oil, fragrance, and phthalates.

  • Rouge Sheer rose
  • Flush Sheer red
  • Petal Sheer pink/coral shimmer

Application tips by Hourglass Artistic Director Gina Brooke: “Blot the sponge applicator directly on to the apples of the cheeks and blend up towards your temples using your fingers. It’s long-wearing but it moves when you’re applying so it’s less intimidating—it sets afterwards. You can wear Aura Sheer Cheek Stain over Hourglass Illusion Tinted Moisturizer or solo. During the summer, makeup minimalists can just get by on the cheek stain, lip stain and a few coats of mascara. It gives you a subtle, refreshed look and a pop of color that really lasts, so you won’t need to reapply throughout the day.”

Aura Sheer Lip Stain ($26.00)

The water-based, non-transfer formula offers a delicious wash of color, buildable coverage and a natural, semi-matte finish. Beneficial ingredients include anti-oxidants like Vitamin E and Green Tea Extract plus an algae-based extract that addresses elastin and collagen degradation in the lips. Aura Sheer Lip Stain has a flock tip applicator with a built-in twist mechanism for easy, even application. To initiate product upon first use, twist base until lip color appears on applicator tip. Free of parabens, phthalates, fragrance and sulfate.

  • Rouge Sheer rose
  • Flush Sheer red
  • Petal Sheer pink/coral shimmer

Application tips by Hourglass Artistic Director Gina Brooke: “Start by exfoliating the lips to slough off any dead skin cells and create a smooth base. Blot applicator onto the lips and blend using your finger—it’s that simple. For extra precision, or to create the illusion of a fuller pout, line the lips before application. Aura Sheer Lip Stain plumps the pout with anti-aging ingredients that fill in fine lines and wrinkles. It has a lightweight consistency that’s easy to blend and comfortable to wear. You can build your coverage for a more dramatic statement. Finishing with a gloss softens the look.”

availability: Spring 2011

Saturday, January 15th, 2011

Hourglass Gypsy Eyeshadow Duo
Hourglass Exhibition Eyeshadow Duo

Hourglass Exhibition Eyeshadow Duo

Hourglass Exhibition Visionaire Eyeshadow Duo ($38.00 for 0.20 oz.) contains a grayish plum mauve with a frost-metallic finish and a blackened burgundy eggplant with a frost-metallic sheen. Hourglass’ Eyeshadow Duos are such an underrated and under-appreciated product–the quality is absolutely phenomenal and the shades are infinitely flattering.

Selfishly, I wish they had about a dozen more duos, because their eyeshadows are easily some of the best I’ve come across–and better yet, the quality is fantastic across the range. There are no duds in their duo line-up. Soft, smooth as silk, and buttery texture paired with intense color pigmentation that glides on, blends effortlessly, and can be used wet or dry.

The $38 may seem steep, but don’t let it fool you: there are two full-sized (actually, more than that) eyeshadows inside. Each eyeshadow is 0.10 oz., which is double the average full-sized eyeshadow, for a total of 0.20 oz. The packaging is also this pewter bronze with a swivel top that reveals a mirror inside along with a pint-sized brush (with real bristles) that’s usable and not scratchy.

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

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: Hourglass as a brand is underrated, but their eyeshadows are easily my favorite product from the brand. There is something to be said for a brand that puts out consistently high quality products with to-die-for textures. This duo will naturally flatter cooler skin tones but it is not so cool-toned that warmer skin tones will find it difficult to work with.

WHERE TO BUY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Hourglass Gypsy Eyeshadow Duo
Hourglass Gypsy Eyeshadow Duo

Hourglass Gypsy Eyeshadow Duo

Hourglass Gypsy Visionaire Eyeshadow Duo ($38.00 for 0.20 oz.) is a beautiful neutral duo featuring a shimmering, warmed-up champagne beige and a rich, coppered chocolate brown. Hourglass’ Eyeshadow Duos are such an underrated and underappreciated product–the quality is absolutely phenomenal and the shades are infinitely flattering.
Selfishly, I wish they had about a dozen more duos, because their eyeshadows are easily some of the best I’ve come across–and better yet, the quality is fantastic across the range. There are no duds in their duo line-up. Soft, smooth as silk, and buttery texture paired with intense color pigmentation that glides on, blends effortlessly, and can be used wet or dry.

The $38 may seem steep, but don’t let it fool you: there are two full-sized (actually, more than that) eyeshadows inside. Each eyeshadow is 0.10 oz., which is double the average full-sized eyeshadow, for a total of 0.20 oz. The packaging is also this pewter bronze with a swivel top that reveals a mirror inside along with a pint-sized brush (with real bristles) that’s usable and not scratchy.

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

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: Hourglass as a brand is underrated, but their eyeshadows are easily my favorite product from the brand.  There is something to be said for a brand that puts out consistently high quality products with to-die-for textures.  This duo will naturally flatter warmer skin tones but they are not too warm–they will work well on cooler and neutral-toned skin, too.

WHERE TO BUY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, January 10th, 2011

Hourglass Siren Extreme Sheen Lipgloss
Hourglass Siren Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Siren Extreme Sheen Lipgloss

Hourglass Siren Extreme Sheen Lipgloss ($28.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a wicked shade of fiery red with a part-chrome, part-metallic finish. It has a definite orange-base, but this the strength of the red really is pulled to the forefront. Think Kat Von D Adora… but more. It is such a rich, luxurious gloss that applies beautifully and evenly while delivering opaque color with very little product. The wear is fantastic (four to six hours), and it’s moisturizing while you wear it. There is a light, sweet scent–reminiscent of perhaps creme brulee–that doesn’t feel overwhelming nor smell synthetic.

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

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: Yes, yes, and yes. I have to try more to see if the whole range performs as well as Siren, but I look forward to whatever shade I try next. I just wish they’d inject a wee bit more into each tube — at 0.12 oz., they fall below average, and though it certainly is a vibrant, pigmented gloss and doesn’t need a lot of product to deliver that color, it’s still a little low.

WHERE TO BUY: Hourglass

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

Hourglass Dune Eyeshadow Duo
Hourglass Dune Eyeshadow Duo

Still Loving Hourglass’ Visionaire Eyeshadow Duos

Hourglass Dune Eyeshadow Duo ($38.00 for 0.20 oz.) includes a champagne shimmer and deep olive shimmer eyeshadow. I picked up this shade during Sephora’s Friends & Family Sale, because I really love the texture of Hourglass’ eyeshadows–so smooth and buttery without being a powdery mess.

Dune has a shimmering gilded beige champagne with a metallic sheen accompanied by a darker, deeper, smoldering brown with flecks of green and copper shimmer.  Each eyeshadow was rich in pigmentation, applied flawlessly on the lid, and it was easy to blend them together.

Even though the price tag makes me cringe, keep in mind that you’re getting 0.20 oz. worth of product–MAC and Urban Decay eyeshadows are only 0.05 oz. ($14.50 and $17.00, respectively), while NARS Single Eyeshadows contain 0.07 oz. ($23.00).

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you’re in the market for an easy to use, high quality neutral eyeshadow duo, consider Dune.  At the very least, check out the Hourglass display next time you’re at Sephora.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →