Saturday, October 16th, 2010


Tarte for Holiday 2010

The Jewelry Box ($52.00) (Limited Edition) (Sephora Exclusive)

This versatile palette is a veritable treasure trove packed with new and limited-edition products and shades along with such Tarte bestsellers as a full-size of Park Avenue Princess Mineral Powder Bronzer. As an added bonus, this festive jewelry box comes with its own “off the chain” gilded trinket, guaranteed to be your go-to accessory for holiday parties and year-round. Includes: 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized shimmering eye shadow, 16 x 0.06 oz full-sized matte eyeshadow, 8 x 0.03 oz lip gloss, 0.21 oz Mineral Powder Bronzer, 0.25 oz highlighting powder in soft pink, 5 x 0.02 oz long-wearing eyeliners.

Good as Gold Lipgloss Collection ($29.00) (Limited Edition) (Sephora Exclusive)

15 x 0.06 oz Lipgloss in bubblegum pink, vivid pink, true pink, warm berry, deep raspberry, nude, brown sugar, soft peach, coral, whisper pink, apricot, apple red, mauve, tawny brown, deep plum

Check out more sets & photos! Continue reading →

Saturday, October 16th, 2010

Nubar Holiday 2010
Nail Lacquer: Sateen, Charmeuse, Moire, Chiffon

Nubar Holiday 2010: Finest Silks (Part 2)

For the holidays, Nubar took inspiration from the Silk Road with their collection of eight shades. Each shade is designed to provide complete coverage in two coats and be universally wearable. Nubar is free of formaldehyde, phthalate and toluene. Shades include: Organza (intense pearl white), Taffeta (pale peachy brown), Marabout (deep muted brown), Pekin (rich dark red), Sateen (deep vivid red), Charmeuse (neutral blush), Moire (light reddish brown), and Chiffon (muted brown). All shades are creams except Organza, which is a frost.

  • Sateen is a deep dark red cream–it’s a couple of shades darker than Pekin. This has a little brown to it in comparison. It almost looks like a jelly but it’s more cream than jelly. It’s not quite as dark as Chanel Rouge Fatal but it comes close. Two coats.
  • Charmeuse is a medium pink cream muted by brown. It’s similar to Chanel Rose Confidentielle but with more noticeable brown. Two coats.
  • Moire is a light-medium beige brown cream. Two coats.
  • Chiffon is a mushroom-taupe cream. Two coats.

I thought that Barielle’s Style in Argyle Collection would offer at least a couple of dupes but nothing was very similar. In general, I don’t have a vast stash of browns, so I didn’t find dupes for the majority of the shades here. All of the shades lean have mostly neutral tones to them, so they will work well on both cooler and warmer skin tones.

I think Charmeuse will be a favorite, just because it’s a wearable, modern pink–not bright, not utterly girly, and not pastel.

Application was stellar on all of the creams: two coats for creamy, smooth, even color. The formula isn’t too thick or thin, and the rubber cap makes it easy to hold when applying.

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: Sateen is a gorgeous dark red, if you have need for one, while Charmeuse is a lovely wearable pink for all skin tones.

AVAILABILITY: Nubar

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, October 16th, 2010

Nubar Holiday 2010
Nail Lacquer: Organza, Taffeta, Marabout, Pekin

Nubar Holiday 2010: Finest Silks (Part 1)

For the holidays, Nubar took inspiration from the Silk Road with their collection of eight shades. Each shade is designed to provide complete coverage in two coats and be universally wearable. Nubar is free of formaldehyde, phthalate and toluene. Shades include: Organza (intense pearl white), Taffeta (pale peachy brown), Marabout (deep muted brown), Pekin (rich dark red), Sateen (deep vivid red), Charmeuse (neutral blush), Moire (light reddish brown), and Chiffon (muted brown). All shades are creams except Organza, which is a frost. Each shade retails for $7.49.

  • Organza is a white gold with ultra fine white shimmer. This looks more metallic than frosty to me, and brush strokes are quite noticeable. I did three coats, and I couldn’t get it to be opaque. It was the only shade that had opacity issues, but there was something appealing about this shade. It reminded me of weddings, actually. I like it even though I hate seeing brush strokes, which is so twilight zone. (I would give this one a product rating of 25/30, while the others are 29/30.)
  • Taffeta is a medium brown with orange-peach cream. Slightly warm but mostly neutral. Two coats.
  • Marabout is a cool-toned plummy brown-gray cream. Two coats.
  • Pekin is a dark red cream that pulls just a tiny bit blue. It’s similar to Essie’s Limited Addiction, which is a little darker and seems more neutral. Two coats.

I thought that Barielle’s Style in Argyle Collection would offer at least a couple of dupes but nothing was very similar. In general, I don’t have a vast stash of browns, so I didn’t find dupes for the majority of the shades here. All of the shades lean have mostly neutral tones to them, so they will work well on both cooler and warmer skin tones.

Application was stellar on all of the creams: two coats for creamy, smooth, even color. The formula isn’t too thick or thin, and the rubber cap makes it easy to hold when applying. Organza was the odd man out with a sheerer application and visible brush strokes.

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: I have no idea why I’m drawn to Organza in spite of its brush strokes, but I am. Pekin is a nice dark red cream, though I like Sateen (coming up!) a bit better.

AVAILABILITY: Nubar

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Friday, October 15th, 2010


YSL Metallic Colorama Holiday 2010 Collection

Metallic Colorama Palette ($65.00) (Limited Edition)

A shimmering, pink champagne powder for the face and décolletage.

Ombres Duolumieres ($41.00) (Limited Edition)

  • No. 33 Silver grey/golden plum

Golden Gloss ($30.00) (Limited Edition)

  • Golden Carat Gold
  • Golden Chocolate Bronze
  • Golden Red Beige

Rouge Pur Shine ($30.00) (Limited Edition)

  • Rose Metallique Soft rose
  • Or Metallique Gold

La Laque (Limited Edition)

  • Gold (139)
  • Bronze (140)
  • Silver (141)

Touche d’Or ($40.00) (Limited Edition)

Taking inspiration from the YSL Metallic Colorama Collection, this highlighter is like liquid gold for the face. Offering a lovely, overall illuminating effect for the complexion, Touche D’Or looks lovely by day and seductive by night.

Availability: October 2010

See more photos! Continue reading →

Friday, October 15th, 2010

China Glaze Holiday 2010
Nail Lacquer: Midnight Kiss, Party Hearty

China Glaze Holiday 2010: Part 3

Finally! These are the last four shades of the new and limited sixteen holiday shades by China Glaze. I grouped these together, because three of the four are very glitter-based. I wanted to swatch the glitters last, since the glitter does have a tendency to get into the nooks and crannies of my nails, which can throw off other swatches. Party Hearty is a fun shade but definitely use it to layer rather than alone.

Each China Glaze retails for $3 and up, depending on where you purchase yours from. I know the brand is carried at various etailers as well as Sally’s (not sure if it’s in store yet, though).

  • Midnight Kiss is a soft gold with gold shimmer-glitter and an almost metallic/foil finish. It’s the gold version of Cheers to You. It seems similar to Butter London’s Full Monty. Two coats.
  • Party Hearty is a mix of large, red hexagonal glitter; smaller green hexagonal glitter; and smaller silver and gold circular/square glitter. All the glitter particles are flat and suspended in a clear base. This is a shade that’s best layered over other polishes rather than on its own. For swatching purposes, I did both, and when it’s shown alone, that’s three full coats. I liked it best over Midnight Kiss, Cheers to You, and Frosty.
  • Mrs. Claus is a pinky-red jelly with dark pink and fuchsia glitter suspended in the base. I feel like I’ve seen this shade before, but I can’t put my finger on it. I did three coats, but it still seemed rather pink on me. (This shade fell flat for me; it’s just so pink on but red in the bottle–I’d give this a lower product score of 27/30, FYI!)
  • Mistletoe Kisses is an emerald green base with minty-green/silver glitter. After swatching Mrs. Clause, I thought this was going to be just like it, but Mistletoe Kisses is quite opaque! It initially reminded me of China Glaze Watermelon Rind, but it’s far too teal in comparison. Two coats.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Party Hearty is fun and the very definition of Christmas! It looks excellent over Midnight Kiss.

AVAILABILITY: 8ty8beauty.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Friday, October 15th, 2010

China Glaze Holiday 2010
Nail Lacquer: Jolly Holly, Peace on Earth, Jingle Bells

China Glaze Holiday 2010: Part 2

The next six shades consist of all shimmers with the exception of Show, which is a cream. I had the same experience formula-wise as I did with the first six; easy, even application. Most shades were two coats, though I did three for Snow and Frosty.   The consistency of these shades was on the thinner side, but it wasn’t watery or sheer. Each China Glaze retails for $3 to 4, depending on where you purchase yours from. I know the brand is carried at various etailers as well as Sally’s (not sure if it’s in store yet, though).

  • Jolly Holly is a darkened emerald green with lighter green shimmer. It’s a little warmer with finer shimmer than China Glaze’s Emerald Sparkle. Jolly Holly feels less emerald in comparison. Two coats.
  • Peace on Earth is a medium olive green with an almost chartreuse tone. It’s similar to NARS’ Mash, which has a little more olive in its base. Two coats.
  • Jingle Bells is a light champagne gold with golden microshimmer. This looks really lovely on, and the application is absolutely flawless. It reminded me of a less yellow/gold version of Chanel Gold Lame (which has a metallic finish, so they’re a bit different). Two coats.
  • Snow is a stark white cream. It was surprisingly easy to apply, though I needed three coats to even out a little streakiness I had towards the bottom of the nail (which was more owed to impatience during application). It’s like White Out for your nails but you know, looks better, applies better, and lasts longer. It does seem to have a blue-base to it. It’s a brighter version of MAC Vestral White (which is harder to apply). Three coats but it was opaque in two.
  • Frosty is a semi-sheer white base with silvery-white shimmer. There’s something about this that reminds me of wedding dresses. It almost has a purplish iridescent sheen. I don’t own many white-based polishes, so I don’t have any dupes for this one. Three coats.
  • Cheers to You is a silver foil. It just says shimmer, but it looks like a foil/mtallic, because of the high sheen and finish. Duri’s Celebrity Scandal and SpaRitual’s Looking Glass are both similar. Two coats.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Snow may not be a shade that’s easy to wear on its own, but it could be used to layer underneath other polishes or glitters. If NARS’ Mash seems too expensive for you, Peace on Earth is a nice affordable option.

AVAILABILITY: 8ty8beauty.com

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →