Friday, September 10th, 2010

Milani Runway Eyeshadow
Milani Leaf Green Runway Eyeshadow

Milani Runway Eyeshadow: Leaf Green

Milani Leaf Green Runway Eyeshadow ($5.99 for 0.07 oz.) looks like a medium grassy (or leafy, I suppose) green, but in actuality, it swatches as a chartreuse green with stronger yellow undertones.  It’s semi-sheer when applied dry, but it really looks beautiful when applied wet (and it still retains much of the same intensity and coloring when it dries down–I’d say 90%).   It has such a smooth, more metallic than shimmer look when applied wet–could be a nice substitute for MAC True Chartreuse pigment.  I do wish it would apply better when used dry, though, since it’s supposed to be used either way.

Check out my original review for my thoughts on the packaging.

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

  • Product: 24/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 2/5

RECOMMENDATION: Color eyeshadow fiends should probably pass, just because it’s nowhere near as pigmented as many top brands for color–but if you just want to play around and experiment with color, this is an affordable way to do so.

AVAILABILITY: Cherry Culture

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Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Essie Fall 2010 Collection
Nail Lacquers: Sew Psyched, Limited Addiction, In Stitches, Merino Cool, Velvet Voyeur, Little Brown Dress

Essie Gets It Just Right for Fall

Essie’s Fall Collection includes six new shades, which you can purchase individually for $8 a pop. You can also purchase all six together for $48 (which is still $8 each). Nordstrom also has a mini four-pack (includes Merino Cool, Limited Addiction, Little Brown Dress, and Sew Psyched) for $17. The shades are described as: Sew Psyched (cashmere-soft sage pewter), Limited Addiction (racy garnet red), In Stitches (cheeky blush pink), Merino Cool (sensuous autumn mulberry), Velvet Voyeur (intense chocolate amethyst), Little Brown Dress (beguiling black coffee).

  • Sew Psyched is a muted sage green with silvered-gray micro-shimmer. Two coats. It reminded me of Rescue Beauty Lounge’s Diddy Mow, but it’s darker and less yellow–like cousins but not twins.
  • Limited Addiction is a deep red cream that’s very opaque in one coat, though I found two coats to be perfect. It almost looked like a jelly lacquer, even though it’s a cream. Though the color may be similar to other shades of red, the application was flawless.
  • In Stitches is a muted rose-berry cream. I love how it’s pink, but it’s not really pink–and it’s not plum either. I think this would be really lovely on cooler skin tones in particular.
  • Merino Cool is a purple-tinged gray, or perhaps a very dull, darkened lilac? But not really. I think you have to go with gray as the primary descriptor, even though it is quite altered by the purple pull. I swatched it with two coats, but I think three would be better.
  • Velvet Voyeur is an ultra vampy red-based purple burgundy cream. It has a very glossy, inky look. Make sure you get enough polish on the brush when you go to do a second coat–I didn’t get enough on one of my nails (you’ll notice in the swatch), and it layered rather streakily.
  • Little Brown Dress is a deep, blackened chocolate brown cream. It’s dark, but it’s distinctly brown, even in natural light. I love that it doesn’t look black but definitively black-brown. Just two coats here, as it was incredibly pigmented.

The formula was really nice on these; not too thin, not too thick, and the majority were pigmented enough to use just two coats of polish.   Merino Cool was the only one where I think three coats was necessary (though the swatch photos are with two, for reference).  My personal favorites were Merino Cool and Sew Psyched, though I kind of dig Little Brown Dress.

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

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

RECOMMENDATION: There’s no reason not to consider one of these shades, as they all performed quite well. I found Merino Cool and Sew Psyched to be the two that really grabbed me, but Little Brown Dress is a shade I wouldn’t normally consider wearing, so I liked getting the chance to try it!

AVAILABILITY: Essie

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Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Video Review:  Chanel Les Khakis de Chanel Collection

Here’s a “thorough” video featuring the three new nail lacquers from Chanel’s Les Khakis de Chanel Collection, which is released in honor of Fashion’s Night Out.  It hits chanel.com, Chanel boutiques, and select department store counters on September 10th.  Each polish retails for $25 and contains 0.4 fl. oz.  You can read my full review and see photo swatches here.

Please excuse my horrible French pronunciation.  It was always my biggest issue that I was never able to overcome when I took French during high school–my dumb mouth never could cooperate with my brain that was speaking beautifully (at least, in my mind, LOL).  And to think I took French over Spanish because I couldn’t roll my Rs!

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Video Review: Rock & Republic (Blushes) First Impressions & Swatches

I reviewed CALL ME on Monday, but here’s a video I shot when I first opened up the four blushes I purchased from HauteLook, close-ups, me talking far too much per usual, and swatches.  I will do written reviews for the rest as well — not to fear!

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Milani Runway Eyeshadow
Milani Caribbean Sea Runway Eyeshadow

Milani Runway Eyeshadow: Caribbean Sea

Milani Caribbean Sea Runway Eyeshadow ($5.99 for 0.07 oz.) is such a pretty shade of aqua blue… if you use it wet.  When used dry, it’s rather lackluster and almost takes on a greenish cast; it’s also on the sheer side.  However, add just a touch of fixing spray or water to your brush before picking up the shadow yields a much more intense, pigmented shade of lightened aqua blue.  You’ll need to pack on the color, rather than sweep on, to get the best results.  It’s not a great eyeshadow, but it’s workable when wet.

Check out my original review for my thoughts on the packaging.

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

  • Product: 23/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 2/5

RECOMMENDATION: Color eyeshadow fiends should probably pass, just because it’s nowhere near as pigmented as many top brands for color–but if you just want to play around and experiment with color, this is an affordable way to do so.

AVAILABILITY: Cherry Culture

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Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Chanel Les Khakis de Chanel Collection
Nail Lacquers: Khaki Brun, Khaki Rose, Khaki Vert

Fashion’s Night Out with Chanel

In honor of Fashion’s Night Out, Chanel has put together Les Khakis de Chanel, a collection featuring a trio of nail lacquers. These will be available on September 10th at chanel.com, Chanel boutiques, and select department store counters.  Each shade retails for $25.00.

Edited @ 2:42pm:  Added comparison photos of Khaki Vert against Sew Psyched, because I don’t think they’re dupes, but I’ve had a lot of questions asking if they are!  Pics or shut up, right?  I like Sew Psyched, too, but they are different enough on me that I wouldn’t call ‘em dupes.

  • Khaki Brun is a deep olive green-tinged brown. It’s a rather murky brown with just this touch of green to it; it’s distinctly brown but in natural light, the olive tones are pulled out more. Just two coats.
  • Khaki Rose is a rose-tinged medium-dark brown. It has such a subtle rosiness to it that it’s almost not there, but yet you can’t say it’s not, because there’s something about how the rose warms up the brown. Two coats.
  • Khaki Vert is a grayish-cast medium green. Not really murky, but it’s not bright or happy either; a rather neutral green, I’d say. It’s not quite camo green, because it doesn’t have strong yellow or live undertones. Two coats.  I don’t think this is really similar to Essie’s Sew Psyched–this is much greener, while Sew Psyched pulls almost blue/teal in comparison.

The formula on these was a bit thicker than usual, but it didn’t make for difficult application–quite the opposite!  Application was nearly flawless with each coat being incredibly pigmented.  One coat would have almost been enough on each one, but two coats created that smooth, opaque look.  I always hate how these end up being B+ products, which is really due to the price, not the quality of the product (which is excellent).

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: All three had fantastic pigmentation and applied flawlessly, so if a color catches your eye and you don’t mind the price tag of Chanel, I definitely recommend trying it out.

AVAILABILITY: September 10th @ chanel.com

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