Tuesday, February 24th, 2015

NARS Frenzy Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Frenzy Dual-Intensity Blush

NARS Frenzy Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00 for 0.21 oz.) is more of a highlighter/blush concept, as the lightest shade is most similar to other gold highlighters we’ve seen in the past. The formula is a lot easier to work with dry, as it blended nicely and just didn’t take nearly as much effort to work into the skin as a damp application. If you wear foundation underneath these, I would recommend great care and some brush experimentation when using the formula damp, as using NARS’ Wet/Dry Blush Brush lifts the color and doesn’t blend the color well at all. I think this duo was a lot more flattering on the skin, as the texture wasn’t emphasized terribly (compared the first one I reviewed).

If you missed my initial review of this formula, you can find it here, but it went into more detail about the formula. As a recap, NARS is touting these as a wet/dry formula with the wet formula yielding a “translucent wash of color,” which is really the opposite of my experience, as applying either shade with a dampened brush intensifies both the color and the finish (if it has any shimmer)–this would have rated a B+ if it was described as most wet/dry formulas were (including their own Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow formula, which is damp application yields greater pigment/intensity).

Frenzy (Left) is described as a “sparkling soft pink-gold highlighter.” It’s a brightened, true yellow gold with warm undertones and a metallic finish. I don’t see any pink in the pan, whether from afar, up-close, or when swatched (wet or dry). The texture is firmly packed, and this was a shade that yielded only so-so color coverage with brushes but will yield better pigmentation if you use your fingertips. It had a luminous finish that gave the skin a sheen (and didn’t give me much color, but I’m medium in color) without emphasizing pores. It wore well for seven hours. When I applied it damp, it was more pigmented and significantly more shimmery, but it only slightly emphasized pores and wore well for eight hours. Becca Opal (P, $38.00) is very similar. Dior Transatlantique (LE, $58.00) is darker. theBalm Mary Lou-manizer (P, $24.00) is lighter. MAC Whisper of Gilt (LE, $30.00) is similar. Guerlain Terracotta Sun in the City Illuminating Powder (LE, $70.00) is darker. Chanel Mouche de Beaute Illuminating Powder (LE, $80.00) is similar. Chanel Routes des Indes de Chanel Illuminating Powder (LE, $80.00) is yellower. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Frenzy (Right) is described as a “shimmering bright tangerine orange.” It’s a medium-dark orange with warm, yellow-red undertones and a soft, pearly shimmer. The texture was softer while still being smooth. Applied dry, you’ll get semi-opaque coverage with a softer quality to it, while the finish appears more satiny on the skin. I was able to get seven and a half hours of wear when I applied it dry. When I tried using the blush damp, the color payoff was deeper and richer with a more pronounced shimmery sheen. It was harder to blend and work with when used damp, though it lasted for nine hours. MAC Style Cast (LE, $21.00) is lighter. MAC Seduced at Sea (LE, $25.00) is slightly redder. MAC Modern Mandarin (P, $21.00) is darker, redder. Sleek MakeUP Pink Mint (P, $6.99) iis darker. MAC Bad Girl Gone Good (LE, $21.00) is more muted. NARS Soulshine #2 (LE, $29.00) is similar. NARS Luster (P, $29.00) is lighter, yellower, more shimmery. MAC My Paradise (LE, $28.00) is similar when mixed. MAC Shape the Future (LE, $30.00) is darker, more orange. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

Frenzy

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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P
product

Frenzy (Left)

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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product

Frenzy (Right)

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes

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Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

NARS Adoration Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Adoration Dual-Intensity Blush

NARS Adoration Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00 for 0.21 oz.) is one of six duos that will be available on March 4th. The lighter shade was best applied dry, as damp application resulted in such a metallic finish that it was more like a flashing, neon sign that said, “Hey, my skin isn’t perfect! I have pores! And texture!” The darker shade ended up becoming much, much more pigmented when applied damp, but it become too shimmery, and it lasted longer that way. It was easier to apply, blend, and control applied dry, though, and coverage was buildable so greater intensity was achievable with two or three passes. Wear time is fairly good regardless of application method, but I get slightly longer results with a damp application. The texture is firm, but smooth, and it doesn’t feel dry or stiff, but it seems to have a firmer press overall.

The formula is supposed to have a “weightless, luxurious texture” that can be used wet or dry. The wet application is supposed to give a “translucent wash of color,” while dry application yields “a natural glow that warms the complexion.” If you’ve tried MAC Extra Dimension Blush and MAC Extra Dimension Skinfinish, the formulas are similar. Estee Lauder, Lancome, and Laura Mercier have all done cheek products with a similar wet/dry kind of formula.

Nearly across the board, there was either negligible color payoff difference between wet and dry applications, but when there was a difference, it was typically much more pigmented. The shades tended to apply with a more metallic/shimmery finish when applied with a dampened brush and emphasized pores. The fact that it was more pigmented applied damp may be great news for some, but it is the opposite of how the formula was described (which is how I rate products), so you will see that have a negative impact on the ratings. It is interesting that it was described as a wash when applied wet, as this is the opposite of the Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow formula.

With the new blush formula, NARS also added a Wet/Dry Blush Brush to their assortment of brushes. I’m trying to give the brush more chances, but I had great difficulty using it with their formula, particularly wet, where it tended to lift the product and leave the results looking patchy, even over bare skin. With enough effort and a very, barely-there touch and some fingertip blending, I could manage fairly even color over bare skin. However, it was impossible to use over a liquid foundation, as it moved and lifted the foundation in places. I far preferred using MAC’s 159 stippling brush, which worked well for both wet and dry applications. Ultra-soft brushes by Chikuhodo and SUQQU didn’t pick-up product well with this formula. Some of the deeper shades do work with those feathery, ultra-soft brushes.

Adoration (Left) is described as a “sparkling baby pink.” It’s a light-medium pink with subtle, warm undertones and white shimmer and slightly larger silver-white sparkle. The texture was firm but smooth with semi-opaque color coverage dry and mostly opaque coverage damp. It had more of a frosted finish when it was applied dry, and it very slightly emphasized pores but for the most impart imparted a high-shine sheen and lasted for seven and a half hours. When I applied it damp, it was much more metallic and emphasized every pore and imperfection, but it wore well for eight and a half hours. The effect can be luminous without being emphasized by patting translucent or flesh-colored powder over it. MAC Just a Wisp (P, $27.00) is less shimmery. Makeup Geek First Love (P, $9.99) is less shimmery, cooler-toned. MAC For Your Amusement (LE, $20.00) is less shimmery. MAC Azalea in the Afternoon (LE, $27.00) is less shimmery, warmer. Physicians Formula Rose (P, $11.99) is warmer. Lancome Moonlight Rose (LE, $42.00) is less shimmery, lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Adoration (Right) is described as a “shimmering hot pink.” It’s a medium-dark pink with subtle, cool undertones and a satiny sheen. Applied dry, it was semi-sheer and buildable, with a more satin-like finish that gave the skin a lovely glow that didn’t draw attention to pores, and it lasted for eight hours on me. Applied damp, it was intensely pigmented with nearly opaque coverage from the get-go, and you’ll want to apply the smallest amount and build-up, or else you’ll have a lot of work ahead of you. The dampened application intensifies the sheen, but it doesn’t turn metallic, so it still gives a glow without emphasizing the texture of the skin, and applied this way, the blush lasted for nine hours. Makeup Geek Love Affair (P, $9.99) is warmer. MAC Peaches & Cream (LE, $21.00) is similar. MAC Sunset Beach (LE, $32.00) is similar. YSL Fuchsia Desinvolte (01) (P, $40.00) is less shimmery. Clinique Berry Pop (03) (P, $21.00) is brighter, cooler-toned. Illamasqua Peaked (P, $26.00) is more muted. Chanel Affinite (65) (P, $38.00) is lighter. Tom Ford Beauty Wicked (P, $55.00) is cooler-toned, more muted. Tom Ford Beauty Narcissist (LE, $55.00) is cooler-toned. NYX Bourgeois Pig (P, $5.00) is less shimmery. MAC Supernova (LE, $27.00) is similar. See comparison swatchesview dupes.

P.S. — I am testing the wet and dry application for each shade, so one duo is the equivalent of testing four blushes, and while I will work diligently through the six, I may not get be able to test all of them before the official release date (it really depends on how long each shade wears and whether I can test more than one shade per cheek per day!)–just as a heads up.

The Glossover

P
palette

Adoration

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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P
product

Adoration (Left)

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
P
product

Adoration (Right)

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes

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Friday, February 20th, 2015

NARS Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Dual-Intensity Blush

NARS Panic Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00 for 0.21 oz.) will release on March 4th at Sephora/NARS and then at other retailers on April 1st. There are six duos in the Dual-Intensity formula, so they’re a wet and dry formulation. Here are some sneak peek swatches to mull over why I work my way through testing them :)

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Friday, February 20th, 2015

NARS Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Dual-Intensity Blush

For Spring 2015, NARS Cosmetics introduces the new Dual-Intensity Blush. Featuring NARS’ exclusive Translucent Prismatic Technology, the newly-imagined formula allows for multi-dimensional effects with a uniquely weightless, luxurious texture. Six modern shade pairings curated by François Nars offer a universal spectrum of hues that works across all skintones. Sweeps on dry for a bold flush or wet for a translucent wash of color. Dry pigments impart a natural glow that warms the complexion and fuses weightlessly. Dampen NARS’ exclusive Wet/Dry Blush Brush before application for a watercolor effect—dab over the apples of the cheeks and swirl in a circular motion to paint on a subtle tint. Designed in a sensorial, soft-touch square case with a modern magnetic closure, six luxuriously embossed duos heighten the art of transformation.

Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00) (New, Permanent)

  • Adoration Sparkling baby pink / shimmering hot pink
  • Craving Sparkling seashell pink highlighter / shimmering beachy bronze
  • Fervor Shimmering soft pink / sparkling deep coppery rose
  • Frenzy Sparkling soft pink-gold highlighter / shimmering bright tangerine orange
  • Jubilation Sparkling yellow gold highlighter / shimmering soft nude peach
  • Panic Shimmering shocking fuchsia / shimmering orange-pink

Availability: March 4th at Sephora and NARS; April 1st at specialty and department stores

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Sunday, February 8th, 2015

NARS Porto Venere Eye Paint
NARS Porto Venere Eye Paint

NARS Porto Venere Eye Paint ($25.00 for 0.08 oz.) is described as a “soft pale pink.” It’s a light pink with subtle, warm undertones and a satin finish. Dior Golden Shock #4 (LE) is a powder product. Tarte Palace of Versaille (LE) is a powder product. MAC Rose Blend #1 (LE) is darker, powder. bareMinerals Strawberry Mousse (LE, $14.00) is a powder product. Urban Decay Strange (P, $18.00) is a powder product. Tom Ford Beauty In the Pink #1 (LE) is darker, powder. MAC Sensibility (LE, $15.00) is more shimmery, powder. Inglot #356 (P, $6.00) is darker, warmer, powder. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Eye Paint formula, it’s supposed to be a long-wearing, richly pigmented gel eyeliner and eyeshadow. It’s actually a more unique shade (and finish) when it comes to a gel/cream formula, as the majority of similarly-colored shades went, they were powder eyeshadows. I could see this working well as an eyeshadow base to make colors more vibrant, too. I think it is better applied as a sheerer layer or wash of product than on its own, as it is only semi-opaque at best. Two or three thin layers will build up the color to mostly opaque coverage. It seems like it might be a workhorse for some, but it doesn’t really live up to pigmentation claims, though it lasted for twelve hours on me as an eyeliner and ten hours as a cream eyeshadow.

The Glossover

P
product

Porto Venere

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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Thursday, February 5th, 2015

NARS St-Paul-de-Vence Eyeshadow Duo
NARS St-Paul-de-Vence Eyeshadow Duo

NARS St-Paul-de-Vence Eyeshadow Duo ($35.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a mix of orange and medium brown, both warm-toned shades. These actually applied with more pigmentation when pressed onto the skin with a fingertip, as brushes seemed to make them apply more sheerly with a muted quality to them, but the satiny brown goes on unevenly with that type of application, so you might opt for sponge-tipped applicators or use a slightly tacky base. The duo goes together, though there isn’t a lot of contrast, so it may be too subtle together for some.

St-Paul-de-Vence (Left) is described as a “shimmering nectarine.” It’s a brightened peachy-orange with a frosted finish and warm undertones. It applied fairly well with good color payoff, but there’s a dryness to the shade overall that seemed to make it look more muted on the lid. It was noticeably faded after seven hours of wear. Makeup Geek In the Spotlight (P, $9.99) is more shimmery, lighter. LORAC Apricot (LE) is darker. Giorgio Armani Organica (Right) (LE) is yellower. Make Up For Ever I722 Mandarin (P, $21.00) is darker, less shimmery. Chanel Tisse Vendome #3 (P) is more muted. Too Faced Marzipan (P, $16.00) is darker, less orange. Clarins The Essentials #3 (LE) is lighter. Makeup Geek Cinderella (P, $5.99) is darker. LORAC Light Bronze (P) is lighter. Urban Decay Moonflower (P, $18.00) is slightly darker. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

St-Paul-de-Vence (Right) is described as a “chestnut.” It’s a medium brown with warm undertones and a satin finish. It had good pigmentation, but the texture was a little powdery and dry, so it tended to sheer out and fade more readily. It only lasted for seven hours on me. Make Up For Ever S706 Milk Toffee (P, $21.00) is warmer, lighter. Make Up For Ever S604 Teak (P, $21.00) is darker. Make Up For Ever S602 Cinnamon (P, $21.00) is darker. MAC Plum Ember (LE, $15.00) is darker. MAC Femme Fatale (LE, $15.00) is warmer. Sisley Paris Toffee (7) (P, $47.00) is darker. Makeup Geek Country Girl (P, $5.99) is darker. theBalm C4 (LE, $16.00) is darker. MAC One to Watch (P, $21.00) is similar. MAC Glimpse of Flesh (LE, $15.00) is more shimmery. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

palette

St-Paul-de-Vence

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
product

St-Paul-de-Vence (Left)

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

St-Paul-de-Vence (Right)

B-

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes

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