Saturday, February 28th, 2015

NARS Panic Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Panic Dual-Intensity Blush

NARS Panic Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a vibrant duo featuring a bright pink and rusty coral. This seemed to be the least forgiving of the duos releasing as we’re working with much richer shades to begin with, so any weakness in blending is easily seen, and it is lacking that blendability that is so necessary when you have deeper shades like these two. The texture of the product dry is firm and a little stiff, so getting a really even, smooth layer of color dry wasn’t easy and required some buffing with a separate brush to get everything in place. Applied damp, it was hard to avoid splotchy color. Worth repeating, NARS described the formula to have richer color payoff applied dry with more of a wash of color applied damp, and the latter isn’t true whatsoever–applying with a damp brush results in much richer, deeper color and a more intense finish (typically more shimmery).

Panic (Left) is described as a “shimmering shocking fuchsia.” It’s a brightened, medium fuchsia pink with cool, blue undertones and a soft, frosted finish. Applied dry, it had mostly opaque color coverage, was somewhat blendable but not easy to apply, and the shimmer very slightly emphasized pores, but with enough buffing, it’s possible to tamp it down, while the color itself lasted for seven and a half hours on me. Applied damp, it was fully opaque with really rich color coverage but lacked blendability as it adhered and “dried” in place and didn’t want to diffuse/blend out after a few seconds. The finish is more noticeably shimmery on the skin and tended to emphasize the skin’s natural texture. The damp application lasted eight and a half hours. NARS Adoration (Right) (P) is warmer. Clinique Berry Pop (03) (P, $21.00) is brighter, darker. Tom Ford Beauty Narcissist (LE, $55.00) is darker. MAC Supernova (LE, $27.00) is warmer. MAC Feeling Flush (LE, $27.00) is more muted. Burberry Hydrangea Pink (P, $42.00) is less shimmery, darker. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Panic (Right) is described as a “shimmering orange-pink.” It’s a brightened, medium coral with a hint of pink and a gold, frosted shimmer. Applied dry, it had mostly opaque color payoff with a fairly shimmery finish, so it did make my pores more noticeable, and the color stayed on well for seven hours before fading. Applied damp, it deepened and turned a reddish-orange coral with a more metallic sheen, and definitely made my cheeks look very textured as a result, though it lasted a bit longer than dry application at eight hours. It was also rather difficult to blend the color out when I tried using it damp. MAC Secret Admirer (LE, $20.00) is a cream product. Surratt Beauty Ponceau (P, $32.00) is less shimmery, lighter. IT Cosmetics Pretty in Peony (P, $24.00) is pinker. Clinique Ginger Pop (01) (P, $21.00) is less shimmery. NARS Realm of the Senses (Together) (LE, $29.00) is pinker. MAC Simmer (LE, $27.00) is pinker. Tom Ford Beauty Flush (P, $55.00) is less shimmery, lighter. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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palette

Panic

C+

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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product

Panic (Left)

C+

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Panic (Right)

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Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes

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Saturday, February 28th, 2015

Do you rock lavender lipstick? I love the color but must admit that it’s not my favorite on me, so I tend to forget about how pretty it is until spring hits and all I hear about are pastels. Something like NARS Dominique is a really wearable way to wear lavender without it being too pastel or bright, whereas NYX Violet is a great option for almost-lavender but not a true lavender since it is brighter and has stronger purple tones to it. What are your favorite lavenders? What kind of eye/cheek do you pair with them?

  1. OCC Digitalis — a pink-lavender cream
  2. ColourPop Brills — a satiny lavender with a hint of pink
  3. NARS Dominique — a muted, lavender pink
  4. NYX Castle — a gold-shimmered lavender pink
  5. NYX Violet — a brightened, lavender purple

>> See side-by-side swatches! <<

P.S. — Do you have any top five lists from me that you’d like to see? Taking requests for various color-themed top five lists! :)

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

NARS Fervor Dual-Intensity Blush
NARS Fervor Dual-Intensity Blush

NARS Fervor Dual-Intensity Blush ($45.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a mix of warm pink and plum. The formula can be used wet or dry, with dry application yielding a “bold flush,” while damp application gives a “translucent wash of color.” The blushes perform best when applied dry, as they blend and diffuse with little effort and have decent wear (though wear definitely is longer and improved with a damp application). Applying either damp is trickier, as you lose a lot of the ability to blend, and it’s really more like tugging and dabbing color into place, but it never appears as nicely diffused and blended as dry application does. Damp application also means you have to contend with potentially emphasizing pores due to shimmery finishes getting amplified; the lighter shade in the duo didn’t seem to do so, but the darker shade will get very metallic quickly if you aren’t careful (and will take a lot of work to tamp it back down). The texture of the blushes is soft and smooth to the touch, but the powder itself has a firmer press, so really soft, feathery brushes (like Chikuhodo Zs, SUQQU, etc.) do not work well with these in particular. I primarily used MAC 159s when applying these, as they worked well for both dry and damp application methods.

Fervor (Left) is described as a “shimmering, soft pink.” It’s a light-medium pink with warm, yellow undertones and a silvery shimmer. The pigmentation was similar both wet and dry–mostly opaque–but dampened application made the color two to three shades darker and intensified the shimmery effect in the finish. Luckily, while it has noticeable shimmer, it doesn’t intensify to the point where it’s harder to apply; it stayed luminous without emphasizing pores regardless of application method. On me, the blush lasted for seven hours applied dry and eight hours applied damp. LORAC Underrated (LE) is darker, more matte. MAC Modest Blush (LE, $27.00) is more matte. MAC Lesson in Love (LE, $21.00) is lighter. Chanel Sakura (87) (LE, $45.00) is more matte, warmer. Charlotte Tilbury Love Glow (P, $40.00) is similar. Giorgio Armani Eccentrico (LE, $88.00) is warmer. MAC Dainty (P, $27.00) is less shimmery. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

Fervor (Right) is described as a “sparkling deep coppery rose.” It’s a medium-dark, coppery brown with pink and gold shimmer for a more frosted finish. Applied dry, it had semi-opaque pigmentation with a soft, frosted finish. Applied damp, it was darker, bolder, and nearly metallic. It is a lot harder to work with damp than dry, so my recommendation is to apply dry unless you really need the color intensify of damp application, but be prepared for a lot of buffing and/or dusting of translucent powder to tamp it down. Just blending the damp product is significantly harder, whereas dry application feels nearly effortless. Applied damp, the metallic finish emphasizes the skin’s natural texture and any pores in the area. Applied dry, it wore well for eight hours, and applied damp, it lasted for eight and a half hours. This one was more of a chameleon between dry and damp applications, as it takes on a stronger rosy/plum color damp compared to how warm and copper it is dry. Sephora + Pantone Universe Marsala (LE) is rosier. MAC Make You Mine (P, $23.50) is less shimmery. Gucci Beauty Cherry Nectar (P, $49.00) is redder. Tom Ford Beauty Contour (Softcore) (LE, $55.00) is redder. NARS Mauritanie (LE, $39.00) is a cream, matte. Chanel Canaille (89) (LE, $45.00) is similar to the dry application, primarily. NARS Na Pali Coast (P, $39.00) is a cream. MAC Scene to Be Seen (Inner) (LE, $30.00) is similar. NARS Lovejoy (P, $29.00) is slightly more plum. MAC Stylish Me (LE, $21.00) is darker. MAC Ambering Rose (P, $21.00) is warmer, brighter. MAC Stratus (LE, $27.00) is darker. See comparison swatches / view dupes.

The Glossover

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Fervor

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Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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product

Fervor (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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Fervor (Right)

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes

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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

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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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product

Frenzy (Left)

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

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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

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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
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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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