Friday, November 27th, 2009

Lancome Sparkling Cherub Illuminating Powder

Lancome Holiday 2009: Lancome Sparkling Cherub Illuminating Powder

Lancome Sparkling Cherub Sheer Warming Illuminating Powder ($40.00 for 0.35 oz.) is very true to its name: it’s a subtle powder that warms up the complexion.

To me, it feels and looks very much like a bronzer. Although it initially looks sparkly, it’s just a gold overspray, so after that top layer disappears, you’re left with a mostly matte combination of colors. The outer right is kind of a beige-y fleshy-tone, while the inner ring is a deeper bronzy shade. I’m not really a fan of overspray, just because all they do is make it look pretty, sparkly, and different than what it really is.  I’d rather just see it in its semi-matte to matte form.

It’s not really practical to use each section alone, so together, they mix and create a very lightly warmed-up bronze-orange powdery shade. I could see some maybe using the inner portion alone, but the outer ring is a little thin to make it easy to use by itself.

The design of the cherub is cute, and you’ll see it linger in your compact for several uses (until you flatten him out, LOL), which is nice. I could see myself using this as a light blusher on cheeks or maybe a dusting on my forehead, nose, and chin to add extra warmth during the winter season. I don’t, personally, think I’ll reach for this too often, but if you’re looking for a way to warm up your complexion, this might be it.

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: 4/5

Recommendation: For a cutely designed, subtle bronzer, Sparkling Cherub might have you covered.

Availability: Nordstrom

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Friday, November 27th, 2009

Chanel Audace Rouge Allure Lipstick
Chanel Audace Rouge Allure Lipstick

The Scarlet Season: Chanel Audace Rouge Allure Lipstick

Chanel Audace Rouge Allure Lipstick ($30.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a fiery, orange-based bright red in Chanel’s ultra pigmented, moisturizing Rouge Allure formula. Unlike Passion, this is distinctly orange-based whereas Passion is blue-based. I really love when a brand has both (and even more so when they have a pretty neutral red available, too!), because I know some prefer orange-red while others prefer blue-red! (I lean towards blue-red myself.) When I first tested this shade, I thought it was similar to Chanel’s Coromandel Rouge Allure Laque, but it’s not as deep, seems lighter, and doesn’t have shimmer, so they are different enough.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

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Thursday, November 26th, 2009

Bobbi Brown Cabana Corals Collection

Bobbi Brown Cabana Corals Collection for Spring 2010

Check out this coral-inspired collection from Bobbi Brown for this upcoming spring season! Continue reading →

Thursday, November 26th, 2009

Lipstick Queen 9 Minutes of Fame Pop Art Gloss
Lipstick Queen 9 Minutes of Fame Pop Art Gloss

The Scarlet Season: Lipstick Queen 9 Minutes of Fame Pop Art Gloss

Lipstick Queen 9 Minutes of Fame Pop Art Gloss ($16.50 for 1.45ml/0.05 oz.) is a semi-opaque medium red gloss. It comes in a twist-up brush-type applicator, which isn’t my favorite delivery method (it’s the germaphobe in me), but the color is really pretty. It almost seems like it enhances your natural lip color in such a way that it doesn’t really look like you’re wearing a lipstick or gloss — it’s like the color becomes your lips, and then it’s just glossiness after that. It wears well and feels hydrating!  It’s non-sticky, contains no shimmer, and is pretty lightweight.

I do have to mention that this product seems awfully pricey, because a typical gloss (e.g. MAC Lipglass) has 4.2ml for $14… this is not even half as much.

What about you? Would you wear this red?

The Scarlet Season is a series of posts showcasing and featuring my favorite shades of red lips–from glosses to lipsticks that runs through December 2009. You can sure expect to see a lot of red this holiday season!

See more swatches and comparison photosContinue reading →

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

MAC Baroque Boudoir Collection:  Photos & Swatches
MAC The Lap of Luxury Lipgloss

MAC Baroque Boudoir Collection: Lipgloss & Lipstick Lip Swatches

As promised, here are lip swatches for the new, limited edition lipglosses and lipsticks from MAC’s Baroque Boudoir Collection. My lip swatches are always done trying to use what the “reasonable” user would use — so I’m not in the business of spending ten minutes layering a lipstick on nor will I goop on gloss just to get it to show!

I mentioned earlier, in the individual reviews, but D’Nouveau was the most pigmented of the lipglosses, and all three lipsticks were fairly opaque.

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Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

MAC Baroque Boudoir Collection:  Photos & Swatches

MAC Baroque Boudoir Collection: Lipsticks

Every year, MAC presents us with a very limited edition, small-sized collection that’s decked out in more luxe packaging accompanied by equally more luxe prices. This year’s collection is Baroque Boudoir, which is in matte silver with shiny silver and black filigree overlay. This year’s collection contains a whopping nine items to covet: three lipsticks, three lipglosses, two shades of Sheer Mystery Powder, and a clutch.

The lipsticks are creamy, contain no shimmer, tend to be a little more pigmented, and apply more opaquely on lips, though this year’s are less pigmented than some of the previous years’ launches. Like the Lipglosses, I felt like these shades weren’t particularly special or standout. I’m am surprised, yet again, to not see a really excellent holiday red launched. And again, the price on these? Really obscene. They’re definitely not better than MAC’s lipsticks at $14 a pop; you could say these are, perhaps, a little more moisturizing, but not any more so than MAC’s Amplified Creme finish.

P.S. – I will do lip swatches this afternoon!

Baroque Boudoir Lipstick ($22.00 U.S. / $26.00 CDN)

  • Prive is a blue-based medium pink with a light sheen. It’s creamy, and it goes on so-so, not totally opaque, but still adds plenty of color to my lips. It reminded me of a more subtle Speed Dial Lipstick.
  • Baroque Boudoir is a plummy brown with a light sheen. It’s semi-opaque (you can kind of tell in the swatch) both on the skin and on the lips. I think it’s similar to Spice It Up! (a little redder) or Sheer Plum (a little browner) Lipstick.
  • Treasured is a creamy, semi-opaque neutral beige. MAC says it’s warm, it seemed neutral on me. It really didn’t jump out at me as warm (I almost wanted to say it was cool!). It reminded me of Jubilee! or even a more pigmented Fresh Brew Lipstick.

Let me also give you a quick run-down of the Sheer Mystery Powder, which I chose not to spend solely for the sake of photographing it. My bottom line is I don’t think it’s a particularly good pressed powder, and therefore not even close to being worth the $60 price tag attached to it. The compact is very similar to the Hello Kitty Kouture compacts, just with different embellishments. It’s also similar to Monogram’s from last year. It has some heft to it, but it’s not too heavy (unlike Couture and Stylistic’s compacts).

Sheer Mystery Powder is an extremely lightweight pressed powder. I find it a little too dusty and chalky to really enjoy it, and the shade range is incredibly limited. As NC30, I felt too dark for Light Medium and yet too light for Medium Plus. If you love the packaging, there’s no shame in purchasing it for the compact alone! If it makes you happy, it makes me happy! (Please note, the rating below is only for the lipsticks. For the compact, I’d give it an overall score of C for an average product housed in an overpriced compact.)

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation: Like the Lipglosses, if you’re a big fan of the packaging, you might find it’s worth picking up one or two!

Availability: MAC Cosmetics

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