Wednesday, January 5th, 2011


MAC Finally Flawless Collection for Spring 2011

U.S. Launch Date: January 13th, 2011 | International Launch Date: January 2011

Mineralize Foundation SPF 15 has the exclusive formula – micronized and coated pigments improve blendability, maintain colour purity with SPF 15, and our liquid mineral ferment complex adds nutrients. Light diffusing optics minimize the visibility of imperfections – FINALLY Flawless!

Mineralize Foundation SPF 15 ($32.00 U.S. / $38.00 CDN)

Minerals are the foundation for all living things. The human body is made of approximately 60% water and skin is approximately 70% water. By fusing minerals and water, Mineralize SPF 15 Foundation is the synthesis of earthly essential elements in the form of a rich, luxurious solid cream compact with a liquid mineral infusion. This uniquely textured, medium buildable, foundation delivers immediate hydration while revitalizing the look of dull and dry skin. Used backstage during the Spring/Summer 2010 fashion shows of; BCBG, Carolina Herrera and Baby Phat, it is both a makeup artists dream and a real woman’s skin saving grace.

Mineralize SPF 15 Foundation features an innovative gel based system that provides extreme comfort and creaminess in application, making this formula appealing to all skins but especially normal to dry. The gel fuses the formula’s high water content (30.5%) with the polymers and coated pigments for the ultimate in silky smooth, yet long wearing (up to 8 hours), colour payoff. Because of the immediate moisturization benefits, Mineralize SPF 15 Foundation also helps to immediately reduce the appearance of pores and provides skin with a non-sticky, cooling break.

Additionally, a blend of lightweight oils creates a creamy, comfortable feeling on the skin. The innovative wax-free structure helps moisturize skin, while light diffusing optics help minimize the visibility of pores and imperfections for a flawless looking complexion

  • Available in: NC15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 37, 40, 42, 44, 45, 50, 55; NW15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 43, 45, 47, 50, 55.

130 Short Duo Fibre Brush ($40.00 U.S. / $48.00 CDN)

A short, round, flat-topped brush ideal for the smooth, easy application of foundations, creams, emulsions, and select powder products. Features a blend of natural bristles and synthetic fibres.

Please note: This collection is a relaunch of Mineralize Foundation SPF 15, which debuted last spring. I reviewed the 130 Brush when it originally launched, too.  I will try to review the foundation, but since it is permanent (and has been for awhile), there are several other products that are new and limited for spring that I want to show you first, so it may be awhile — just a heads up.

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Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer
Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer

Estee Lauder Spring 2011: Wild Storm

Estee Lauder Wild Storm Nail Lacquer ($19.00 for 0.30 fl. oz.) is a steely gray with a hint of bluish-teal micro-shimmer with a faint metallic-frost finish. The blue-tinge is very subtle–it’s more noticeable in the bottle than it is on the hands. The blue comes out strongest in natural light (or low light), but it is there. I only need two coats for an opaque result, and it applied smoothly and fairly evenly, despite minor brushstrokes showing up under flash lighting.

I was initially reminded of Chanel Steel, but it’s nothing like it–it is far too black to be similar. Then, I thought perhaps it was in the same vein as Chanel Black Pearl, but Black Pearl is much more teal–not so much silver or blue. It is like a darker version of NARS Full Metal Jacket. It is also like Zoya Kelly–with shimmer.

The formula itself wasn’t too thick or thin and applied smoothly without any issues. Drying time seemed average, and there was a soft glossy shine, but I’d still recommend a top coat. The amount in the bottle is a little below average, I’d say, while the price tag is a bit hefty.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: While I’ve been really impressed with the uniqueness in some of Estee Lauder’s polishes lately, Wild Storm doesn’t quite hit those notes for me.

WHERE TO BUY: Estee Lauder

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Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

Chanel Promesse Eyeshadow Quad
Chanel Promesse Eyeshadow Quad

Chanel Promesse Eyeshadow Quad

Chanel Promesse Eyeshadow Quad ($56.00 for 0.04 oz.) is a [relatively] new and limited edition pastel palette, which is exclusive to Chanel.com. For those of us in the U.S., the palette is in the “international style,” where the eyeshadows have more of a baked appearance and texture; they are noticeably different from the texture and design of most U.S. eyeshadow quads. I’m generally not a fan of Chanel’s quads in this formula, because the shades are often very sheer and nowhere near as soft–typically, the only way to use them is wet–this is based on my experience with three or four of this kind of quad.

Promesse delivers decent pigmentation across all four shades, both wet and dry, which I was really happy to see. These also didn’t seem to skip or drag at all when used dry. The palette includes a pale white with a blue tinge in a frosted metallic finish; pink-tinged champagne beige; warm bronze with a frosted finish; and pale, pastel green with a pearly finish. The beige shade was the sheerest when used dry, but the others were fine. When used wet, all four performed well. The texture also seemed softer and silkier than usual.

I’m always taken aback when I see how little is supposed to be in here, just 0.04 oz. (less than most single eyeshadows, and U.S. Chanel quads are typically 0.21 oz.), and I can say that it certainly doesn’t look like there isn’t enough product in it. From a weight perspective, it seems ridiculously low, but when I look at the product itself and the way they seem to fill the pan, it’s hard to align those two images.

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

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: I like this quad best on paler skin tones, because two of the four shades are very, very pale and almost white, which may look too stark and almost ashy on medium to dark skin tones.

WHERE TO BUY: Chanel

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Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Archived:  2010 MAC Cosmetics Collections

With 2010 officially behind us, it is time to archive the past year’s collections so that we can concentrate on what’s ahead of us.

See collections from 2010! Continue reading →

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011


Zoya Intimate Collection: Caitlin, Dannii, Dove

Zoya Intimate Collection Review, Photos, Swatches

Zoya’s Intimate Collection features six new shades for spring, and it will launch online on January 15th. Each bottle retails for $7 and contains 0.50 fl. oz. The shades include: Caitlin (misty, moody gray violet cream), Dannii (sparkling, enchanted orchid metallic), Dove (delicate, pale gray cream), Gemma (mysterious green/purple duotone metallic, Jules (soft, glimmering gold kiss metallic), and Marley (lavender pink with a whisper of metallic).

  • Caitlin is a muted, gray, violet-tinged periwinkle with a cream finish. I used two coats. I’m thinking China Glaze Secret Periwinkle might be similar but brighter/more obvious periwinkle.
  • Dannii is a pinked violet with red undertones and gold and ruby shimmer and sparkle. I used two coats. I can’t think of dupes for this one at the moment.
  • Dove is a softened, pale gray with an ever-so-slight tinge of green-teal (at least, on me). I used two coats. It seems like a lighter version of Rescue Beauty Lounge’s Concrete Jungle.
  • Gemma is a murky spring green with soft yellow undertones and flecks of teal and fuchsia shimmer. It took three coats for me to get this to be opaque (I did just two coats on my pointer figure, for reference). I couldn’t think of a dupe for this one.
  • Jules is a pale champagne beige gold with darker gold flecks. This dries down pretty quickly and definitely needs a top coat to retain a high shine finish. I used two coats. It reminded me of MAC Soiree, but Soiree is significantly more copper, though the finishes are similar. Also similar in finish to Dior Timeless Gold but not so much in regards to color (boo!).
  • Marley is a pale lavender cream with subtle pink undertones and a dusting of pearly white micro-shimmer. Two coats. Ironically, for as light as this shade was, it was the most pigmented of all six. I thought perhaps China Glaze Light As Air would be similar, but it’s far too cool-toned (more blue-based thank pink-based) and lighter. I think Essie’s Neo Whimsical is the closest I have, but it’s pinker and has no shimmer.

The formula on these was easy to work with–not too thin or too thick–and applied evenly without any fuss.  Gemma was the only shade I found needed three coats to look its best, while the rest were fine in two coats.  I really loved the ease of application on both Dannii and Jules–this is my kind of finish but they’re just so effortless to apply.   I wore Dannii all last week, and after seven days, I only had minor tip wear.

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

FINAL THOUGHTS: My favorites were Dannii, Jules, and Marley.  I actually really loved the subtly of the pearly shimmer in Marley; it looks very much like a cream in natural light, but with just a bit of sunlight, it has this faint glimmer of sparkle.

WHERE TO BUY: Zoya, available on January 15th.

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Estee Lauder Extravagant Red Lipstick
Estee Lauder Extravagant Red Lipstick

Estee Lauder Holiday 2010: Extravagant Red

Estee Lauder Extravagant Red Long Lasting Lipstick ($22.00 for 0.13 oz.) is a limited edition shade from Estee Lauder’s holiday collection (which also features Extravagant Berry). The best part about this lipstick is actually the gold glitter overspray on the outside of the lipstick–it’s just a shame it wears off. The lipstick itself does have a faint gold shimmer to it, but it is quite subtle. It is a rich, opaque orange-based red with subtle gold micro-shimmer, soft shine, and intensely pigmented. It wears for six hours with ease, and it doesn’t leave lips feeling dry. Like other Estee Lauder lip colors, it did have their sweet fig scent.

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

FINAL THOUGHTS: I like everything these is about this lipstick — it’s smooth, pigmented, and wears comfortably.  The shade itself is not particularly unique, though, so for those who find themselves buying red lipsticks often, you may have something similar enough to this to skip.

WHERE TO BUY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →