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NARS NARSissist Cheek Kit

NARS NARSissist Cheek Kit
NARS NARSissist Cheek Kit

NARS NARSissist Cheek Kit ($49.00 for 0.24 oz.) includes three cheek products–a highlighter, blush, and bronzer. I can’t tell you how frustrating it was to start photographing and swatching this only to realize that lo and behold, it’s Orgasm and Laguna yet again. NARS has a full range of blushes, and even more, a lot of them are amazing. I wish NARS would work on introducing fans to new shades rather than throwing the same two at us over and over again. If you picked up the One Night Stand palette over the holidays, you already have all three shades within that palette. The permanent versions of Orgasm and Laguna that I have are both softer, less stiff,  and easier to work with than the palette versions included here. I didn’t care for the brush; it was somewhat scratchy and rough against the skin. I used it for application, and it agitated the skin on my cheeks to subtle but reddened bumps (something I experience with MAC’s 129 as well).

In terms of value, it’s hard to really pinpoint it, since you are getting a brush with it. If we just pretend the brush isn’t part of the equation, it works out to be $204.17/oz. as compared to $181.25/oz. for a full-sized blush (and $128.57/oz. for full-sized Laguna). You can also purchase a duo of Orgasm/Laguna for $41 (or $117.14/oz., as it contains 0.35 oz. — more than this palette in total!), or the mini-sized version for $24 (0.17 oz. total, or $141.18/oz.).

Devotee is a pale, pink-tinged beige with a frosted finish. The texture is soft, lightweight, and easy to blend. It had buildable color payoff to about semi-opaque, but it is designed to be a highlighter than a blush. I was surprised, but it just barely emphasizes pores, and if you really blend it out a lot, it becomes very glowy and luminous without the emphasis. It wears six and a half hours on me, which is short of average. Urban Decay Naked (P, $29.00) is similar. Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight (P, $44.00) is warmer. NARS Debbie Harry Highlighter (LE, $29.00) is cooler-toned. See comparison swatches.

Orgasm is described as a “peachy pink with golden shimmer.” It’s a warm, medium pink with a stong golden shimmer-sheen. Too Faced Peachy Keen (LE) is similar. Guerlain Blush G (LE, $65.00) is also similar. Milani Dolce Pink (P, $6.49) is very similar. Guerlain Peach Boy #2 (P) is slightly less pink. Benefit Sugarbomb (P, $28.00) is softer. See comparison swatches.

Laguna is a medium-dark tan brown with warm, orange-yellow undertones and a golden shimmer-sheen finish. I reviewed this in full here. I find the quality of the Laguna in this palette to be the same as it was in the previous palette I tried (NARS Hearts New York); the quality of the individual pan is slightly higher. It lasts well for eight hours, had good color payoff, and a fairly soft texture. Urban Decay Toasted is darker, browner. MAC Lush Light Bronze is warmer. MAC Refined Golden is browner, darker. MAC Soft Sand is slightly warmer, lighter. Burberry Summer Glow is more yellow-toned. See comparison swatches.

NARS NARSissist Cheek Kit NARSissist Cheek
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NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette

NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette
NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette

NARS Eyeshadow ($79.00 for 15 x 0.03 oz. or 0.45 oz.) includes fifteen eyeshadows. NARS’ eyeshadows are supposed to be “highly pigmented, longwearing, and crease resistant” while the “color glides on smoothly, evenly, and blends effortlessly.” Some of the issues I had with this palette are issues that I have found to occur with several NARS eyeshadows I’ve tried in the past. There are some NARS eyeshadows I absolutely love, but there are a lot that leave me wanting more. In general, if you always use an eyeshadow primer, then this palette is workable, but if you don’t, some of the shades have trouble adhering to dry skin–if you have slightly oily lids, then that should help the powders stick better as well. The texture of the eyeshadows in the palette are all a little harder/firmer than corresponding singles/duos (I don’t have them all, but comparing to the ones I did have in their original single/duo form, it held true). Wear varied between seven and nine hours, depending on the shade. All of the eyeshadows are from existing singles or duos (and all of them are currently available, I believe, though a couple are considered Vintage, and one is limited edition), so if you only love one or two, you might consider buying them individually.

In regards to value, NARS eyeshadow singles are $24.00/0.07 oz. or $342.86/oz., while duos are $34.00/0.14 oz. or $242.86/oz. The palette is $175.56/oz., so you will get more product for less money when you purchase them together. I think if you love more than five or six shades, then the palette is probably the way to go. 0.03 oz. is plenty of eyeshadow to last you a good while, and if there are any you really use up all the time, most are available permanently. To clarify, the #1/#2 or I/II is to indicate left/right side of a duo.

This palette appears to be fully sold out online at this time, though it was supposed to be exclusively available through NARS’ e-commerce website beginning January 15th with February 1st as the launch date for department/specialty stores. Nordstrom did release it early (January 13th), but it went “unavailable” shortly after–whether it sold out or if they took it down until February 1st, I don’t know. So while sold out for now, there should be other retailers/stores that you can purchase from closer to February 1st, but if it’s really something on your wish list, you might trying calling your local store/counter and asking if they have it available for sale.

All About Eve #1 is described as a “flesh-toned neutral.” It’s a muted, yellowed beige with a soft, frosted finish and warm undertones. It had nice color payoff, though it’s close enough to my skin tone that it might not look that way, but I can assure you that it was opaque. It applied smoothly and evenly to the lid. Tarina Tarantino Delightful #4 (P) is similar. Chanel Quadrille #2 (LE) is lighter. Too Faced Cheers! (LE) is less beige. Maybelline Barely Brazen (P, $6.99) is warmer, darker. MAC Jest (P, $15.00) is similar. MAC Naked (P, $21.00) is slightly warmer. MAC Naked Lunch (P, $15.00) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Madrague #2 is described as a “matte caramel.” It’s a medium brown with warm, yellowed undertones and a matte finish. The texture was somewhat stiff to work with, so the color payoff wasn’t fully opaque. Scraping off the top layer helped a little bit going forward. This shade showed signs of creasing after seven and a half hours. Makeup Geek Latte (P, $5.99) is darker, less yellow. Makeup Geek Frappe (P, $5.99) is slightly shimmery and less yellow-toned. Makeup Geek Creme Brulee (P, $5.99) is warmer, less brown. Chanel Charming #2 (LE) is darker. Too Faced Chocolate Milk (LE) is slightly darker. Bobbi Brown Frappe (LE, $29.00) is lighter. LORAC Taupe (P) is darker. MAC Brownluxe #2 (P) is shimmery. theBalm Allegro (P, $16.00) is slightly darker. Inglot #342 (P, $6.00) is darker. See comparison swatches.

Fez is described as a “velvety cocoa.” It’s a warm-toned, coppery-bronze with a frosted finish. This was the best eyeshadow in the palette; incredibly pigmented, very soft and buttery. It wore well for nine hours. Charlotte Tilbury Golden Quartz (P) is a cream product, darker. Clarins The Essentials #7 (LE) is slightly darker. Chanel Charming #3 (LE) is similar. MAC Her Cocoa #3 (LE, $15.00) is lighter. Urban Decay Ambush (LE, $18.00) is browner. MAC Divine Decadence (P, $15.00) is similar. Too Faced Gangsta (LE) is more golden. Milani Intermix (P, $6.99) is slightly browner. See comparison swatches.

Bali is described as a “neutral.” It’s a dark brown with cool undertones and a matte finish. This eyeshadow just wouldn’t adhere to bare skin well; on my arm, I could pack it on (tried it with fingertips, brushes, and sponge-tip applicators), but it would sheer away to nothing. When I later worked with it on the lid, it adhered better (my eyelid is less dry compared to my arm), but it was a little stiff when blending. Over NARS’ primer, it did just fine, though. The texture was really soft (can be a little powdery), and it is incredibly pigmented in the sense that a lot of product gets on the brush just lightly tapping it on the surface of the powder–it just doesn’t stick to bare skin well. Compared to the permanent single of this, it is less pigmented and doesn’t bind as well. It was hard to rate this one, because technically, pigmentation was fine except it didn’t stick, which is more of a general quality (maybe a texture) issue. Tarina Tarantino Delightful #5 (P) is not quite as matte. Too Faced Dark Chocolate (LE) is darker. bareMinerals Boardroom (LE) is darker. Kat Von D Wolf (P) is warmer. Urban Decay Secret Service (P, $18.00) is is similar. Urban Decay Faint (P, $18.00) is lighter, warmer. MAC Cross-Cultural (LE, $15.00) is warmer. MAC Charcoal Brown (P, $15.00) is similar. Inglot #363 (P, $6.00) is slightly plummy. Bobbi Brown Hot Stone (LE, $29.00) is cooler-toned. See comparison swatches.

Coconut Grove is described as a “deep brown infused with reflections.” It’s a deep brown with a matte finish. It might say “infused with reflections,” but I didn’t see any sparkle when applied! I had all the same issues with this as I did with Bali, though this one wasn’t as powdery and did adhere better–so same issues but not as severe. Laura Mercier Espresso (LE, $23.00) is redder in tone. Chanel Charming #4 (LE) is lighter. Too Faced Dark Chocolate (LE) is slightly lighter. Tom Ford Beauty She Wolf #1 (LE) has a redder tone. bareMinerals Boardroom (LE) is similar. theBalm Matt Ramirez (LE, $16.00) isn’t quite as dark, warmer. MAC Midnight Flurry (LE, $15.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Dance in the Dark (P, $15.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Showstopper (LE, $15.00) is similar. MAC Embark (P, $15.00) is similar. bareMinerals Foreshadow (P) is cooler-toned. Inglot #329 (P, $6.00) is slightly warmer. See comparison swatches.

Madrague #1 is described as a “matte cream.” It’s a pale, yellow-toned beige with a matte finish. It’s another shade that matches my skin tone, so it may not look like it’s as pigmented as it really is–but it was nicely pigmented, soft and blendable, and easy to use. bareMinerals Velvet Nude (LE, $14.00) is similar. Wet ‘n’ Wild Hard Being the It Girl #3 (LE, $2.29) is a touch lighter. Disney by Sephora Ali Ababwa (LE) isn’t as warm-toned. Urban Decay Foxy (P, $18.00) is slightly yellower in tone. See comparison swatches.

Nepal is described as a “soft sheer rose.” It’s a soft, peachy brown with a warm undertone and a frosted finish. It had fairly good color payoff, and the texture was soft and applied smoothly overall. Too Faced Marzipan (P) is similar. bareMinerals Ball Gown (LE) is lighter. LORAC Light Bronze (P) is warmer. See comparison swatches.

Ashes to Ashes is described as a “shimmery violet based brown.” It’s a medium brown with a frosted sheen and subtle warm undertones. The texture was stiffer, and the color didn’t go on as strongly as it looked in the pan–it also looked a lot more golden swatched than it does in the pan. MAC Crushed Clove (P, $15.00) is warmer. Too Faced Jingle All the Way Eyeshadow #4 (LE) is more golden. Sleek MakeUP Court in Cannes (LE, $9.99) is more golden. bareMinerals Schmooze (LE) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Brousse #2 is described as a “black violet.” It’s a muted, smoky purple with warm undertones and a satin finish. It was a drier, stiffer color to work with, and the pigmentation reflected that with semi-opaque color payoff. This one creased on me after eight hours of wear. Makeup Geek Drama Queen (P, $5.99) is slightly brighter. Illamasqua Queen of the Night (LE) is also similar. See comparison swatches.

Mekong is described as an “espresso infused with shimmer.” It’s a deepened brown with subtle warm undertones and gold sparkle and shimmer over a matte finish. It had good color payoff, and the texture was soft and fairly blendable. Despite its more matte finish, it adhered a lot better to bare skin than Bali or Coconut Grove! MAC Midnight Hour (LE, $15.00) is more matte. MAC Beluga (LE, $15.00) is darker. Chanel Mystere #1 (LE) is darker. Disney by Sephora Cinders (LE) is also darker. Dior Night Golds #3 (LE) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Bellissima #1 is described as a “shimmering beige with subtle glitter.” It’s a pale, peach-tinged beige with sparkle. It had fairly good color payoff, and the texture was soft and blendable–a smidgen powdery. There are so many similar beiges to this, though not as many that have the sparkles — see comparison swatches.

Lhasa is described as a “lavender grey.” It’s a purpled taupe with a frosted finish and cool undertones. It had fairly good color payoff, but the texture was stiffer than it is with the permanent single–and the color payoff isn’t as good. It is buildable, so I think you can get comparable color to the single, but Lhasa is a really lovely eyeshadow as a single and less stellar here. Guerlain Les Tendres #4 (LE) is less shimmery. Bobbi Brown Smokey Grey (LE, $21.00) is darker. Urban Decay Darkside (P, $18.00) is brighter. MAC Graphic Style (LE, $15.00) is cooler-toned. MAC Hypnotizing (LE, $15.00) is more frosted. See comparison swatches.

Bad Behaviour is described as a “deep pewter.” It’s a dark gray with a teal shimmer and frosted sheen. It had good color payoff, and the texture was mostly soft and smooth, but it was different than the single that was released over the holidays. The texture is completely different–firm versus incredibly soft and almost pliant–and the color of the palette shade leans very teal with a stronger sheen, whereas the single looks grayer. Makeup Geek Galaxy (P, $5.99) is grayer. Dior Golden Snow #5 (LE) is less frosted. MAC Nighttrain (LE, $15.00) is grayer, darker. See comparison swatches.

Dogon #2 is described as a “charcoal.” It’s a blackened navy with very fine navy shimmer over a matte base. It had so-so pigmentation, and the texture was a little stiff (definitely not as soft as Bali/Coconut Grove). bareMinerals Black Leather (LE, $14.00) is blacker. Anna Sui Diamond Blue (LE) is similar. Wet ‘n’ Wild I Don’t Do Camouflage #2 (LE, $2.29) is bluer. Inglot #389 (P, $6.00) is lighter, bluer. See comparison swatches.

Pandora #2 is described as a “matte black.” It’s a deep, dark matte black with neutral undertones. This had similar issues as the ones I experienced with Bali and Coconut Grove–it just doesn’t stick that well to bare skin, even though it is seemingly quite pigmented as plenty of product gets onto the brush, it just sheers away quickly. As it is a more basic color, there are a lot of similar shades — see comparison swatches.

NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette NARSissist Eye
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Round-up: NARS Final Cut Collection

NARS Final Cut Collection
NARS Final Cut Collection

The new-for-spring NARS Final Cut Collection, which is exclusively available at Nordstrom (in the U.S.), Selfridges (UK), and Holt Renfrew (Canada), is here!  It has an official release date of February 1st, though.  On March 1st, it will also be available at narscosmetics.com and NARS Boutiques. There is an additional blush, Final Cut, that I don’t have, so I wasn’t able to review it for you, but the rest of the collection has been reviewed in full and is linked below.  My personal favorites were Descanso and Villa Lante Satin Lip Pencils.

Reviews, Photos, Swatches

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Sneak Peek: NARS NARSissist Eye Palette Photos & Swatches

NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette
NARS NARSissist Eyeshadow Palette

Here’s a sneak peek at the new NARS NARSissist Eye Palette which launches January 15th online at narscosmetics.com, February 1st at department stores/specialty retailers.  Except, Nordstrom already has it online for purchase. Full review to come — please hold questions until the review is up – I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you!  🙂

See more photos & swatches!

NARS Spring 2014 Gifting: NARSissist Eye & Cheek Palettes

NARS Spring 2014 Gifting
NARS Spring 2014 Gifting

Are you a NARSissist? NARSissist (NARS∙is∙sist) (n.) – lives by her own rules, not afraid to express herself in every look, mood or attitude. Effortlessly captivating with a bottomless makeup bag.

NARSissist Eye Palette ($79.00) (Limited Edition)

NARS Cosmetics introduces the NARSissist Eye Palette, named for and inspired by the brand’s devoted fans and cult followers, this inaugural palette will set the stage for future NARSissist products to come. The limited-edition palette features 15 of the NARSissist community’s most beloved and inspiring shades in one compact, ready-to-wear every day, every way. Wear one shade on its own for captivating color or play with the possibilities by layering different shades for an unlimited range of effects. Available January 15th on narscosmetics.com and NARSissist followers; February 1st for NARS Boutiques and department/specialty stores.

  • All About Eve I Flesh-toned neutrals (Part of a Permanent Duo)
  • Madrague II Matte caramel (Part of a Permanent Duo)
  • Fez Velvety cocoa (Permanent)
  • Bali Neutral (Permanent)
  • Coconut Grove Deep brown infused with reflections (Permanent)
  • Madrague l Matte cream (Part of a Permanent Duo)
  • Nepal Soft, sheer rose (Permanent)
  • Ashes to Ashes Shimmery violet based brown (Permanent)
  • Brousse II Black violet (Part of a Vintage Duo)
  • Mekong Espresso infused with shimmer (Permanent)
  • Bellissima I Shimmering beige with subtle glitter (Part of a Permanent Duo)
  • Lhasa Lavender grey (Permanent)
  • Bad Behaviour Deep pewter (Limited Edition/Repromote)
  • Dogon II Charcoal (Part of a Permanent Duo)
  • Pandora II Matte black (Part of a Permanent Duo)

NARSissist Cheek Palette ($49.00) (Sephora Exclusive) (Limited Edition)

NARS Cosmetics is bringing out your inner NARSissist with the introduction of the NARSissist Cheek Palette. Named for and inspired by the brand’s devoted fans and cult followers, this inaugural palette showcases the brand’s most iconic products and beloved shades for cheeks. This limited edition set features three must-have shades for Spring and a newly designed mini blush brush for easy application on the go.  Available February 1st at Sephora and sephora.com.

  • Devotee (Highlighting Blush)
  • Orgasm (Blush)
  • Laguna (Bronzing Powder)
  • Mini Blush Brush (Brush)

Availability: Eye Palette online at narscosmetics.com January 15th, in NARS boutiques and department/specialty retailers on February 1st. Cheek palette at sephora.com and Sephora stores on February 1st. NOW ONLINE AT NORDSTROM!

See more photos!

Round-up: NARS Spring 2014 Collection

NARS Spring 2014 Collection
NARS Spring 2014 Collection

Here’s the round-up of our coverage for NARS new spring collection (in case you missed a post!), which is available online now at Nordstrom and will be officially released January 15th at narscosmetics.com.  February 1st is the official in-store date (says “at select stores”). You can read the official information here.

My personal favorites were the Kauai Eyeshadow Duo (which received an A+ and a recommendation from me) and Timanfaya Satin Lip Pencil (which is high quality but a little dupeable).

Reviews, Photos, Swatches

Any favorites? Any must-haves or items you plan to check out?

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