Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Guerlain Rue de Francs Bourgeois Eyeshadow Palette
Guerlain Rue de Francs Bourgeois Eyeshadow Palette

Can this palette really be worth $84?

Guerlain Rue de Francs Bourgeois Eyeshadow Palette ($84.00 for 0.25 oz.) contains six different eyeshadows with a dual-ended natural-bristled brush housed in an incredibly luxe compact.

Guerlain is normally on the more generous side with their products, but this palette–by weight–is more per ounce ($336) than their single eyeshadows ($292) or eyeshadow quads ($295). Like Rouge G Lipsticks, you’re definitely paying (more so than usual) for the packaging. It has a beautiful filigree design on the front of the compact along with Guerlain’s signature bee, and then inside is a flip-top mirror that opens to reveal the actual eyeshadows inside. There’s certainly a nice heft to it, and it feels very solid; it’s not cheap or flimsy in the least bit.

Each palette utilizes a mix of three different finishes: iridescent, matte, and satin. In this particular palette, we have a light-medium beige with a matte finish (which nearly matches my skin tone–NC20 for the underarm–for reference) that would make for a nice highlighter on light to medium skin tones; medium-dark grayed brown with a satin finish; brightly shimmered copper with gold sheen in an iridescent finish; dark chocolate brown with a satin-matte finish; medium brown with subtle peach undertones in a satin finish; and a blackened brown with copper flecks in a satin finish.  The darkest shade can also be used wet as a liner.  None of the shadows are named, FYI!

I’m underwhelmed by the overall color palette but more so by the consistency, texture, and intensity of the eyeshadows. They’re just not as soft, smooth, or rich as Guerlain’s other eyeshadows (singles and quads). The formula is entirely different–they don’t have the creaminess that their other eyeshadows have. The pigmentation is just so-so; they’re not particularly sheer or chalky, but you may find yourself going back for seconds in a look. I will say that they perform better in practice than they do simply as swatches on the skin. Each shadow had a very soft, finely milled texture, but I missed the richness of Guerlain’s usual eyeshadow formula. These are not bad eyeshadows–but they’re not out of this world, either; they’re nice but not phenomenal.

Aside from some concerns about the formula itself, the colors seem very basic. There’s nothing inherently wrong with that (and I’m not taking any points away based on the colors themselves!), but I always have admired Guerlain for their ability to bring out nuances in their shades–particularly noteworthy in the Rouge G lipstick line. I’m reminded of Urban Decay’s Naked Palette (Naked, Buck, Half Baked, Darkhorse, Sidecar in particular). They do work beautifully as a palette, though; I was easily able to use several shades in a look with very little effort, and they applied better than they swatched.

I am big fan of Guerlain, and having said so, have been rather hesitant about doling out the $84 it costs for each of the five eyeshadow palettes they launched with their fall collection. Ironically, the fact that this palette didn’t blow me away was what spurned me to finally purchase one! I ordered Rue 2 Vendome and will review that soon. I’m curious if that one will impress me more!

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

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

RECOMMENDATION: I don’t think this is the particular palette that’s worth $84. Unless you’re flush, I’d maybe check out some of the other color variations to find shades with that je ne sais quoi.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

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Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

Guerlain Gwen Rouge G Lipstick
Guerlain Gwen Rouge G Lipstick

Fall Lipstick: Guerlain’s Gwen

Guerlain Gwen (69) Rouge G Lipstick ($46.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a deepened ruby red with a glossy sheen and nearly imperceptible micro-shimmer.  It’s opaque, and like many Rouge Gs, wears incredibly well–my lips still looked scarlet after drinking a full Starbucks, and the color continued on like a champ for about six hours before gradually fading.  It’s moisturizing without being heavy or slippery; it’s creamy but not slick.  It applies like a dream–even color, smooth texture–and feels lightweight.

I think you’ve probably seen me profess my love for Rouge G Lipsticks often enough on the blog.  It has and continues to be one of my favorite lipstick formulas, even if it comes at a price.  All Rouge Gs are scented with a rather perfume-y mix, but I’ve never noticed it linger and only detect it when I smell the tube itself.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If your wallet doesn’t scream and run far, far away from you, Guerlain Rouge Gs have always been worth the indulgence for me.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Video:  Peek at Urban Decay’s New Squeeze-tastic Primer Potion

Just a little hands-on demonstration of the new packaging, me talking far too much per usual… you know, a regular day here at Temptalia HQ.

Monday, August 30th, 2010

MAC Smoked Purple Lipstick
MAC Smoked Purple Lipstick

The Sultry Season: MAC Smoked Purple Lipstick

MAC Smoked Purple Lipstick ($14.50 for 0.10 oz.) is a deep, dark reddened purple.  It’s not exactly the purple you first think of, but I find myself always gravitating back to using the word purple to describe the color.  It’s incredibly dark, certainly vampy, and it packs quite a bit of color.  It is a little on the dry side, though nothing overwhelmingly dry (a la Ruby Woo), so do take care and prep lips by exfoliating them prior to application.

Is this the right purple for you? Would you wear it?

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Urban Decay Primer Potion
Urban Decay Primer Potion

Say Goodbye, Genie

Urban Decay Primer Potion ($29.00 for 0.85 oz.) is now available in the Professional Size, which is the same famous UDPP in a squeeze-tube instead of the curvy genie bottle.  Same product, new packaging.  I don’t have a lot of details on it at the moment, but I know that Sephora has a limited amount, while Urban Decay will start carrying more on its own website soon.

I did notice that the tube is very… squeezy.  There’s a lot of give to the tube, and you’ll need to squeeze it with some pressure to squeeze out the product.  This isn’t a criticism, because it allows for more precision and less waste; you won’t squeeze out too much.   I just received this tube on Friday, but I did not experience any separation in this tube (which is my annoyance with Too Faced Shadow Insurance) — can’t tell you for sure, since it’s likely a new tube and all that.   But so far so good!

I’m sure the packaging change (or at least the availability of it–again, still waiting to hear more information) is a welcome one for a lot of UDPP fans.  I was never bothered by UDPP’s original packaging, but I’ve also never been near finishing one!

Are you all about the squeeze-tube?

Sunday, August 29th, 2010

NYX Hero Lipstick

The Sultry Season: NYX Hero Lipstick

NYX Hero Lipstick ($4.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a deepened neutral-cool blue-based red with a creamy, glossy finish and opaque color.  My NYX Round Lipsticks seem to be scent-free overall, but I do have a few that were brand new and smelled a little on the plastic side, while a couple had more of a general perfume-y feel.  I’m not entirely sure why there is so much variation across the board!   I love the texture and feel of their Round Lipsticks, though; incredibly creamy and the darker shades are certainly quite pigmented.  They do have a fair amount of slip, so they may bleed if you’re prone to to that, and I don’t find they last more than two to three hours, with darker shades on the three hour side and some leaving behind a soft stain.

Is this the right red for you? Would you wear it?

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →