Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Estee Lauder Peach Nuance Blush
Estee Lauder Peach Nuance vs. MAC Ripe Peach Blush Ombre

Estee Lauder Peach Nuance vs. MAC Ripe Peach Blush Ombre — Dupes?

Estee Lauder Peach Nuance Blush ($26.00 for 0.25 oz.) may have escaped your notice, but it is now highly touted as a perfect dupe for MAC’s Ripe Peach. I was quite confused at the hype over Ripe Peach after it came out, to be honest. It’s pretty, but I am completely surprised at how collectible it has become. When murmurings began comparing Estee Lauder’s Peach Nuance, I knew I had to find out for myself.

Peach Nuance is incredibly close, but I found it was a little lighter and a smidgen pinker–it also doesn’t have the shimmer-sheen of Ripe Peach. It’s close, truly, but it’s not a perfect dupe to me. When worn on the cheeks, the difference is much, much subtler, but when swatched, the difference is more noticeable. Peach Nuance is a lightened coral-pink with a very silky, nearly matte finish. If you want to get closer to Ripe Peach, stay more on the coral side of the blush and avoid the lighter side, which does most of the lightening.

This is all to say that Peach Nuance is a lovely color, worth getting if you missed out on Ripe Peach and would love a gradated coral blusher. (Estee Lauder also carries several other Nuance shades, which seem to all have the gradated look.) It’s smooth and easily blended, though the color is soft and sheer and needs to be built up for a more intense look. It’s a great coral for both cool and warm skin tones, though, so it’s a very universal shade.  It could be a little more pigmented, but it’s on par with the pigmentation of Ripe Peach.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: Completely worth picking up if you’ve been trying to find your own Ripe Peach or refuse to pay $70 for one on eBay. Worth picking up if you’re a coral fiend, period!

Availability: Nordstrom

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Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

MAC Digi-Pops

MAC Digi-Pops Collection (Nordstrom Exclusive)

Digi-Pops is Nordstrom’s Anniversary Collection, which is also available at The Bay (in Canada), but will not launch elsewhere as far as I know. It has several portions, so check the launch date on each, because the dates are a little all over the place! Edit: It’s supposed to release internationally in August.

Digi-Pops: Lip Server

Launch Date: July 15th, 2010 at Nordstrom and The Bay

Dazzle Lipstick ($14.00 U.S . / $16.50 CDN)

  • Liquid Lurex Tarnished golden (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Smash Hit White beige (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Infused with Glam Copper brown (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Wham Plum brown (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Glaringly Hip Light Peach (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Sweet Bits Light lavender pink (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Hot Sass Bright orange (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Win-Win Light pink (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Naughty You Neon Pink (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Troublemaker Magenta (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Snazzy Deep plum (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Hellraiser Light lavender (Pearl) (Limited Edition)
  • Baby’s On Fire Deep Red (Pearl) (Limited Edition)

Dazzleglass ($18.50 U.S. / $21.50 CDN)

  • Glamour OD Bright Coral Red (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)
  • Spanking Rich Raspberry Pink (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)
  • Boys Go Crazy Deep amthyst (Frost) (Limited Edition)
  • Fabulous Fun Rich magenta (Frost) (Limited Edition)
  • Hi-Falutin’ Light yellow pink (Frost) (Limited Edition)
  • You Got the Look Yellow nectarine (Frost) (Limited Edition)
  • Utterly Posh Mid-tone orange (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)

Check out the Digi-Pops: iPalette, Digi-Pops: Brush Browser, and Look in a Box Collections! Continue reading →

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

NARS Pro-Prime:  Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base

NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base ($24.00 for 0.26 oz.) is much-needed primer addition to NARS’ core range. In addition to the eyeshadow base, NARS also launched their Pro-Prime Face Prep ($30.00) (which, at this time, I am not planning to review).

I picked up a sample tube of the primer with a recent Sephora order, and the sample tube allowed me about four or five uses. From the images I’ve seen online, the packaging is similar–just a longer tube for the full-size version. They both have a doe-foot applicator (like the kind you see in lipgloss). It has an incredibly thin, slightly creamy consistency. When applied, it looks white on the applicator, but it is virtually colorless. This colorlessness is actually my only–albeit marginal and nitpicky–complaint.

It’s so colorless, even from the get-go, that it is difficult to determine where you’ve applied the primer. This makes covering the entire lid a little more difficult than when one would use a colored, even subtly so, primer. I’ve noticed that if I’ve missed an area, that area will look duller and flake, since there is no primer there. The problem is just it’s really difficult to tell if you’ve missed an area!

Aside from that, if you’ve covered your entire lid, it works really well. It lives up to all the claims NARS makes about it: lightweight, extends the wear, smooths the surface, and maximizes color. I didn’t experience any budging, smudging, creasing, or migration when I used this as a primer underneath my eyeshadows. It is a clear, matte primer that merely smooths over the lid and acts to hold and bond all the eyeshadow together. Colors definitely didn’t look muted at all, and they held their intensity throughout the day.

NARS Smudgeproof is most comparable to Urban Decay Primer Potion and Too Faced Shadow Insurance. The consistency is very similar–they are all very thin and a little creamy.  However, NARS definitely feels more velvety once it dries–which is very quickly.  They are all nearly colorless, though NARS is definitely truly colorless–UDPP has a slight nude tone to it and TFSI even less nude. I’ve always found that UDPP seemed to have a slight shimmer to it, and NARS is completely matte (which is a good thing, if you want to keep your matte eyeshadows matte!). Of course, the major difference between the two is the price — UDPP goes for $18 for 0.34 oz. while NARS is $24 for 0.26 oz and TFSI is $17 for 0.35 oz.

Between the three, I’d actually go NARS. I really didn’t think I’d like it more than the other two, but I would. One of the issues I have with TFSI is the product can separate a bit in the tube. I do really like that you can squeeze out what you need and easily apply with a brush. Both NARS and UDPP have doe-foot applicators, but NARS is a simple tube, so it’s not nearly as wasteful as UDPP is. I’ve never finished a bottle of primer in my life, so even if $24 is a higher upfront cost, I really don’t see it not being worth the investment, since a tube should last you many, many uses.

Fun Fact: Ironically, since I revisited my TFSI review, which was made back in 2008–OMG!–TFSI, at the time, was $1 more than UDPP, which was $16.  The whole point?  UDPP has raised its price $2 in two years and is now more expensive than TFSI.

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: If you’re looking for a lightweight, colorless eyeshadow primer that stays on all day without budging, smudging, or fading, you may want to give NARS Smudgeproof a try.

Availability: Sephora

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Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Milani Magenta Madness Lipstick

The Summer Season: Milani Magenta Madness Lipstick

Milani Magenta Madness Lipstick ($5.00) is a darkened magenta-purple with a violet sheen. It’s like a much more purple, almost downplayed version of MAC Show Orchid. It’s as if MAC Violetta and MAC Show Orchid had a baby, actually. Magenta Madness has good color pay off and applies evenly and smoothly. If you’re not sensitive to scents (synthetic ones, in particular), Milani is a great brand for highly pigmented lipsticks at a budget-friendly price.

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

The Summer Season is a series of posts featuring bright, vibrant shades of coral, orange, and pink lipsticks and lipglosses — all perfect for a summer of fun — that runs through July 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

MAC In the Groove Collection

MAC In the Groove Collection

U.S. Launch Date: July 8th, 2010
International Launch Date: July 2010

Lipstick ($14.00 U.S. / $16.50 CDN)

  • Call My Bluff Mid-tone creamy coffee (Cremesheen) (Limited Edition)
  • Jazzed Bright coral pink (Cremesheen) (Limited Edition)
  • Creme de Nude Pale muted peach beige (Cremesheen) (Permanent)
  • I Like It Like That Deep blue pink (Cremesheen) (Limited Edition)
  • All Styled Up Bright yellow pink (Cremesheen) (Limited Edition)
  • Go For It Mid-tone blue purple (Cremesheen) (Limited Edition)

Cremesheen Glass ($18.00 U.S. / $21.50 CDN)

  • On the Scene Light Coral beige (Limited Edition)
  • You’ve Got It Dirty silver grey (Limited Edition)
  • Going Casual Sheer lilac (Limited Edition)
  • Fashion Whim Light Beige (Limited Edition)
  • Right Image Mid-tone blue pink (Limited Edition)
  • Chillin’ Light white blue (Limited Edition)

Mineralize Eye Shadow (Trio) ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Love to Love Satin beige/Pearly Bronze/Satin Brown (Limited Edition)
  • In the Groove Satin green/Pearly burgundy/Satin coral (Limited Edition)
  • Making It Easy Satin red brown/Pearly beige rose/Satin dark beige (Limited Edition)
  • Togetherness Satin lavender/Pearly purple/Satin grey (Limited Edition)
  • Style Influencer Satin silver/Pearly deep blue/Satin deep mauve brown (Limited Edition)
  • Soften the Mood Satin light brown/Pearly rose/Satin light blue (Limited Edition)
  • Fresh & Easy Satin pink/Pearly burgundy/Satin grey (Limited Edition)
  • Calm, Cool, & Collected Satin deep green/Pearly green/Satin beige (Limited Edition)
  • Blue My Mind Satin light blue/Pearly deep teal/Satin black (Limited Edition)

Powerpoint Eye Pencil ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN)

  • Stubborn Brown Deep Rich Brown (Permanent)
  • Permaplum Deep plum with pink shimmer (Permanent)
  • Navy Stain Royal blue with shimmer (Permanent)

Zoomlash ($13.00 U.S. / $15.50 CDN)

  • Zoomblack Rich Black (Permanent)

Mineralized Skinfinish ($28.00 U.S. / $33.50 CDN)

  • By Candlelight Golden pink (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)
  • Stereo Rose Coral with golden bronze shimmering nuances (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)
  • Comfort Golden bronze (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)
  • Petticoat Pale rose with gold and amber veining (Frost) (Limited Edition) (Repromote)

Mineralize Blush (Duo) ($23.00 U.S. / $27.50 CDN)

  • Happy Together Satin caramel/Pearly beige (Limited Edition)
  • A Little Bit of Sunshine Satin light brown/Pearly beige (Limited Edition)
  • Hang Loose Satin bright pink/Pearly lavender (Limited Edition)
  • Band of Roses Satin blue pink/Pearly light plum (Limited Edition)
  • New Vibe Satin deep rose/Pearly bronze (Limited Edition)

Brush ($42.00 U.S. / $50.50 CDN)

  • 187 Brush A large full circular brush used for lightweight application and blending of face powder or pigments. Use to create soft layers or add textures. Made from a soft blend of goat and synthetic fibres.

See high-res photos! Continue reading →

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

MAC Barelash Pro Longlash

MAC Nude: Barelash Pro Longlash Mascara

MAC Barelash Pro Longlash Mascara ($13.00) is a nude-beige shade in the Pro Longlash formula. I definitely got length without spikiness, but the formula is on the drier side, so it has a tendency to clump if you don’t work quickly. On my lashes, it seemed to give me beige tips, but the root and most of the lash length was only a muted gray or else still a black-brown.

I have Pro Longlash in the black shade, so I’m definitely going to make sure to do an official review of that soon, but the formula can be difficult to work with such a short drying time.  It lengthens well, and it doesn’t clump unless you work slowly.  I also experienced no smudging, budging, or flaking while wearing this over eight hours.   The brush is also small enough that it’s very easy to get to all the lashes from root to tip, including lower lashes.

Official description: Goes the distance. Makes lashes luxuriously long and silky: no spikes! Luxury and longitude in a pro-proven formula. Accelerates lashes into length, smooth and fast. Smooth silky finish. Wears long (all day!) Go the distance: bat-a-lash!

I tried to layer mascara on top of it, and it seemed to amp up colored mascara a bit, but it doesn’t work so well, since it dries quite quickly. I’ve had better results with a mascara primer, because they stay wetter longer and don’t require as many coats to mute your natural lash shade.

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: Barelash gives decent length and stays on without smudging or flaking off during the day, but the shade itself is a bit odd to work with (particularly since it’s hard to work with colored mascara on top of the dry formula), so I don’t think most customers would have a good use for it.

Availability: MAC PRO

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →