Friday, February 11th, 2011

Honor @ NYFW Fall/Winter 2011
Honor @ NYFW Fall/Winter 2011

Honor @ NYFW Fall/Winter 2011

NARS created the look for the Honor Fall 2011 runway show. “I kept looking back to a moment with my grandmother in a department store. There was a gumball machine that I wanted, but the only one left was housed in a box that was a bit damaged. The idea of something slightly distressed, but still beautiful intrigued me, ” said designer Giovanna Randall. “The colors are warm – there’s a 70s sensibility but in an American sportswear way.”

“The look is very punky, sort of like a London ‘club kid,’ but there’s a romantic sensibility about it. It’s beautiful and glamorous, but at the same time, there is roughness,” said Lead Artist James Boehmer.
Below are the key products used to create the exclusive look:

Makeup Breakdown

  • Face: Sheer Glow Foundation, Sex Appeal Blush
  • Eyes: Exhibit A Blush, Taj Mahal Blush, Red Square Velvet Matte Lip Pencil, Triple X Lip Gloss, Via Veneto Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner (NEW for Fall 2011!; for now, try Black Moon Eyeliner Pencil), Larger Than Life Lengthening Mascara
  • Lips: Roman Holiday Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

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Friday, February 11th, 2011

NARS Madere Pure Matte Lipstick
NARS Madere Pure Matte Lipstick

NARS Spring 2011: Madere

NARS Madere Pure Matte Lipstick ($25.00 for 0.07 oz.) is a pale pink-toned white-beige with a matte finish. It has great coverage, going opaque with little product, but as a matte, tends to cling to lips more than your average lipstick.

my thoughts on the formula: Pure Matte lipsticks have a matte finish, and while they’re not moisturizing, they don’t rob my lips of moisture. Lighter matte shades can take prep work, because the matte texture will emphasize any imperfections on your lips. Mattes do, however, last longer on lips, and NARS’ Pure Matte lipsticks last between four and five hours on me, though lighter shades like Madere are only three to four hours.

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  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: I will say that this is by no means a flattering shade on me, and I don’t see it working for a wide variety of skin tones. It’s so pale that it will provide great contrast on darker skin tones, but it is borders on zombie-lips when I wear it. The slight pink in the color does bring it up a notch, but I see this working best for a certain look or on paler skin tones.

where to buy: NARS

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Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

NARS Calanque Eyeshadow Trio
NARS Calanque Eyeshadow Trio

NARS Spring 2011: Calanque

NARS Calanque Eyeshadow Trio ($45.00 for 0.17 oz.) is described as a mix of gold infused platinum with silver flecks, light matte caramel, and rich antique bronze infused with gold. NARS does an admirable job describing their shades, because the official descriptions are quite apt.

The largest shade is a part-shimmer, part-glitter sheer overlay of a pale white-gold color. In all honesty, I do not like it at all–it applies unevenly, makes a mess, and the “silver flecks” aka silver glitter get everywhere. To make this shade manageable, try using it over a sticky base and wet, because dry, it proves to have far more fall out than it is worth. It’s more of a layering shade, too, because there isn’t much of a base color so much as a dusting of shimmer and glitter.

In the middle, there is a soft beige-tan with a subtle sheen; it’s not exactly matte–seems more like a satin to me, because of the sateen finish. This shade had a beautiful finish, very smooth and silky, with nice color pay off, too. The thinnest shade is a dark bronze brown with soft bronze shimmer. It has a softened frost sheen; it’s not a true frost finish, but it is a little more than a satin.

my thoughts on the formula: NARS states that you can use their eyeshadows wet or dry, though. The texture is soft, smooth, and very blendable, with the colors being nicely pigmented more often than not.   Here, two of the three shades are true to the NARS formula, but the largest and lightest shade is more difficult to work with than one would expect.  A NARS Eyeshadow Duo contains 0.14 oz. of product and retails for $32, which makes the trio more per ounce (but a better value than the single eyeshadows).

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  • Product: 24/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Given that the largest shade is also the most difficult one to work with, I’m hard-pressed to recommend this trio, because I only think two shades are worth having.  The amount of glitter fall out from the lightest shade is quite bothersome.

where to buy: NARS

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Monday, January 24th, 2011

NARS Celebrate Soft Touch Shadow Pencil
NARS Celebrate Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

NARS Spring 2011: Celebrate

NARS Celebrate Soft Touch Shadow Pencil ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “parrot green” by NARS. The Soft Touch Shadow Pencils are supposed to be “smooth, creamy, and long-wearing.” They are touted as the “ideal base for layering with powder eyeshadow to increase color intensity.” It’s a multi-tasking pencil that can be used to “Shade the lid, line, or highlight the eye.”

Celebrate is a bright, chartreuse green with a strong yellow base. It applied semi-opaque but glided on easily. The problem with this shade was its complete inability to not crease. I tried it alone, and it creased within minutes. I layered eyeshadow on top (Giorgio Armani Transluminence palette–the teal–I just used whatever I had nearest to me), and it still creased in less than an hour. It’s not even a little creasing–it’s painful to see. Not to be daunted, I also tried it over NARS’ Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base with the same eyeshadow layered on top, and I still had the same results (a veritable creasing bonanza).

my thoughts on the formula: More often than not, the Soft Touch Shadow Pencils are a bust for me–they crease alone but also when layered with powder–and Celebrate continues to show that NARS’ Soft Touch Shadow Pencils really can be hit or miss.

The Glossover

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product

Celebrate

I'm not even sure what you can really use this with or for, if it's going to crease with two additional helpers (a base and shadow to set). It migrates on the lower lash line, too, so it's not something one could line with, either. Five points for the glide and color pay off!
Results
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Dupes
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Monday, January 24th, 2011

NARS Hollywoodland Soft Touch Shadow Pencil
NARS Hollywoodland Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

NARS Spring 2011: Hollywoodland

NARS Hollywoodland Soft Touch Shadow Pencil ($24.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “pale gold” by NARS. The Soft Touch Shadow Pencils are supposed to be “smooth, creamy, and long-wearing.” They are touted as the “ideal base for layering with powder eyeshadow to increase color intensity.” It’s a multi-tasking pencil that can be used to “Shade the lid, line, or highlight the eye.”

Hollywoodland is a muted yellow-based gold–kind of a gilded champagne-gold to me. It delivers a nice layer of color without a lot of tugging. Smooth without being greasy, it glides on the lid. I tested it alone, and within ten minutes, it was crease-city (photo included, for your viewing horror), and following that disaster, I tested it with Hourglass’ Dune eyeshadow on top–much better results (six hours of crease-free wear). However, I later tried it with NARS Brazil eyeshadow on it, and it creased a bit at the four hour mark. It seems like it really needs quite a bit of powder to really set it. I also wore it as a liner and honestly, when I went to check it after an hour, I couldn’t find it.

my thoughts on the formula: More often than not, the Soft Touch Shadow Pencils are a bust for me–they crease alone but also when layered with powder–but with enough powder, Hollywoodland managed to get through six hours without creasing, unlike the last one I tried (Palladium).

The Glossover

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product

Hollywoodland

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For $24, this product needs a lot of help to make it usable. From a brand that can make my favorite eyeshadow primer, I'm It's a shame, because it was gorgeous as a base but also blended out on its own for a quick, everyday look.  Given that these are prone to creasing on my normal-to-dry lids, if you have to layer your eyeshadow primers normally, I don't think these are for you.

Product

3/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

6/10

Longevity

2/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Monday, January 24th, 2011

NARS Bateau Ivre Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Bateau Ivre Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Spring 2011: Bateau Ivre

NARS Bateau Ivre Eyeshadow Duo ($32.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “rich sky blue” and “deep denim blue” by NARS.  It is a new and limited edition eyeshadow duo from NARS’ Spring Collection (now available).

Bateau Ivre is a combo of a rich periwinkle blue with a satin-matte finish (seems more periwinkle than sky blue to me, though I can see the sky blue reference working) and dark, grayish-cast blue with a matte finish. This is a really beautiful combination of colors; it is also a very pretty way to wear blue in a less neon/vibrant way. These softer, almost muted blues remind me of sailors and boats and cruise ships. The texture of the eyeshadows are both soft and smooth, with the lighter blue shade seemingly more pigmented but both work nicely when applied to the lid.

my thoughts on the formula: NARS Eyeshadow Duos usually contain complementary colors, though sometimes you’ll see a duo and go, “There’s no way!” NARS states that you can use their eyeshadows wet or dry, though. The texutre is soft, smooth, and very blendable, with the colors being nicely pigmented.

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  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: The classic way to wear this duo would be to use the lighter blue all over the lid with the darker blue in the crease, then highlight with your favorite highlighter. These blues will suit the gamut of skin tones with their slightly muted appearance.

where to buy: NARS

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