Saturday, February 8th, 2014

NARS Final Cut Blush
NARS Final Cut Blush

NARS Final Cut Blush ($30.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “peach coral.” It’s a warm-toned, muted medium orange with a hint of pink. The color is more complex than it seems initially, but I think this is a shade that may look pinker or more orange depending on your natural undertones, as it looks more peachy-orange in some lighting, and then coral in the next room. Fyrinnae Nordic Angel (P, $6.50) is slightly pinker. MAC Passion for Colour (LE, $20.00) is also a smidgen pinker. Chanel Presage (62) (LE, $38.00) is darker, cream. Edward Bess Secret Affair (P, $43.00) is pinker, more shimmery. NARS Gilda (P, $29.00) is darker, not as flat of a matte. MAC Early Morning (LE, $25.00) is darker. Chanel Frivole (P, $43.00) is darker. See comparison swatches. (You can see it on The Dupe List here!)

This shade is part of NARS’ Final Cut collection, which is a Nordstrom exclusive (in the states).  I reviewed all of the other shades from the collection here. The texture was incredibly soft, velvety, and finely-milled. I had no problems getting true-to-pan color, and applied on my medium skin tone, it’s a soft, coral-y flush, though not a strong, intense shade. It blends beautifully and easily, so it feels like a foolproof blush that can be worn every day and applied in a hurry. It wore well for almost eight hours on before showing signs of fading along the edges.

The Glossover

LE
product

Final Cut

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Saturday, February 1st, 2014

MAC Azalea in the Afternoon Mineralize Blush
MAC Azalea in the Afternoon Mineralize Blush

MAC Azalea in the Afternoon Mineralize Blush ($25.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “mid-tone cool pink.” It’s a light-medium pink with very subtle, cool undertones and a high, frosted finish. It had mostly opaque color coverage, which could be applied lightly and then built up in its intensity or blended out. The texture was mostly smooth with the typical dryness of Mineralize products, and it was somewhat powdery and prone to fading–it was noticeably faded after six hours of wear. MAC Stunner (LE, $21.00) is darker. MAC Porcelain Pink (LE, $30.00) is lighter, warmer. MAC Blonde (LE, $30.00) is lighter, warmer. Chanel Pink Cloud (LE, $43.00) is less frosted, more muted. See comparison swatches.

Petal Power Mineralize Blush ($25.00 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “coral pink with gold shimmer.” It’s a brightened, medium coral with warm, orange undertones and a golden, frosted finish and sheen. It had a fair amount of sheen, and it did slightly emphasize pores when I wore it. The color payoff was great, though, and the texture, though a little powdery, was easy to blend out on the skin. This blush lasted for six and a half hours on me. NARS Soulshine (Together) (LE, $29.00) is darker. Physicians Formula Warm (P, $11.99) is slightly pinker. MAC Fleet Fast (LE, $21.00) is darker. NARS Orgasm is pinker, slightly darker. See comparison swatches.

The Glossover

LE
product

Azalea in the Afternoon

B-

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Dupes
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LE
product

Petal Power

B

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Saturday, February 1st, 2014

MAC Perfect Topping Mineralize Skinfinish
MAC Perfect Topping Mineralize Skinfinish

MAC Perfect Topping (2014) Mineralize Skinfinish ($30.00 for 0.32 oz.) is described as a “pale pearlized pink.” The one I just purchased from this collection is a peach muted by beige with a frosted finish. The one I have from when it launched in 2009 is distinctly pink, almost cool-toned really. The colors of the veins did not even appear that similar in the pans, as it seems to be more than an issue of a different distribution of the types of colored veins. The texture was soft but powdery, and it will most likely be a highlighter on all but the very fairest of skin tones. It wore well for six hours before it turned patchy and slightly faded along the edges, which is the norm for me when wearing MAC’s Mineralize cheek products. bareMinerals The Many Splendors #2 (LE) is lighter. MAC Amber Glow (LE, $25.00) is less frosted. Le Metier de Beaute Whisper (P, $30.00) is similar. See comparison swatches.

Stereo Rose (2014) Mineralize Skinfinish ($30.00 for 0.32 oz.) is described as a “copper bronze.” It’s a light-medium, warm-toned peach with a frosted, somewhat metallic, sheen. Oh, the difference between this Stereo Rose (again, just purchased from MAC’s website on Thursday AM!) and the one I have from the end of 2012 are like night and day. I used a paper towel to rub off several layers of product from the new version to see if it would get better but no luck. Still a very light peach compared to the deeper pinky-coral of previous years. The texture is soft but on the dry side, so it can be powdery, and it wore well for six hours before showing some fading. It is a couple of shades darker than Perfect Topping #2. bareMinerals The Many Splendors #2 (LE) is lighter. MAC Amber Glow (LE, $25.00) is less shimmery. Le Metier de Beaute Whisper (P, $30.00) is a touch lighter. See comparison swatches.

Mineralize Skinfinishes can differ from pan to pan, as it is a mix of different shades and veins, so sometimes there is variance, but I think these go beyond variance. The pans of Perfect Topping don’t look alike at all; we have a mix of lilac, pink, and peachy-beige compared to beige, peach, and a murky lavender. Swatched, the original is definitely pink and on the cooler side. The differences between the two Stereo Roses in the pan seems less obvious–the newly released version appears lighter and less pinky-red, and the most obvious missing component is the coppery veining. However, when swatched, it is such a huge, huge difference.

It’s extremely frustrating that MAC re-releases sought after products, and they’re different. (As an aside, Lily White pigment is also very different from the previously released Lily White.) It is inexcusable to see Stereo Rose so drastically different from when it was released a mere year ago. If MAC can’t keep the color same, they should name it something different – that’s all there is to it. They put out an endless stream of new shades and products with minor differences from something they’ve previously released, but they have new names, so at least no one’s buying it off of older swatches or from previous hype.

The Glossover

LE
product

Perfect Topping (2014)

B-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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LE
product

Stereo Rose (2014)

B-

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Friday, January 31st, 2014

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Comparisons

The new Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes ($35.00 for 0.15 oz. each) are soft, finely-milled, and blend beautifully on the skin while looking natural, never powdery, as if the powder melted into the skin. They’re pigmented in the sense that they go on like they swatch and look in the pan (but you have to envision the shades mixed/swirled together), but none of them are really dark or bright by the nature of their colors. The quality was consistent across all six shades, which was great. I only noticed that Luminous Flush had a slightly rougher texture for the peachy portion (in places), but it didn’t affect the application or was something I noticed when applying or wearing the product.

You can see them side-by-side, where you can also move them around into whatever order you’d like (just click and drag!), in the Swatch Gallery.

All but one have sold out during the VIB early access/preview. Sephora notes these will be in-stores beginning February 21st, so I would expect them to release the remaining stock of the shades to all customers somewhere around then for online as well.

Reviews, Photos, Swatches

  1. Ethereal Glow — pale, cool-toned pink
  2. Dim Infusion — light peach
  3. Diffused Heat — light-medium, peachy coral
  4. Radiant Magenta — light-medium pink-coral
  5. Luminous Flush — medium pink-coral
  6. Mood Exposure — plummy brown

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Friday, January 31st, 2014

Hourglass Ethereal Glow Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Ethereal Glow Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Ethereal Glow Ambient Lighting Blush ($35.00 for 0.15 oz.) is described as a “cool pink.” It’s a cool-toned, pale pink with a satin-matte finish. NARS Sex Fantasy (LE, $29.00) is darker. NARS Mistinguette (LE, $29.00) is darker, brighter. Chanel Brompton Road is less cool-toned and more sparkly but is almost as light. See comparison swatches.

I was really happy to see a distinctly cool-toned shade in the range (finally!), but with only one, I wish it was a bit darker so that it would be more versatile and also work for more skin tones.  This is a shade that is going to work best on very fair skin tones, as it is quite light. On my medium skin tone, though I tried my best, it really doesn’t show up. It might be usable as an all-over brightening powder for light-medium to medium skin tones. It only looked chalky on me when it was really heavily layered, but as a sheer wash, it seemed somewhat brightening. It had good pigmentation–even though it’s very light, it’s not sheer, which is also buildable and easy enough to blend or sheer out if you want a lighter application. The texture was very soft and silky, but it was also on the powdery side where a lot of excess powder built up along the edges of the pan and along the rim of the compact, so go easy when putting your brush to the powder. To the best I was able to tell, the powder lasted well for eight hours (it was very faint on me!).

The Glossover

P
product

Ethereal Glow

A-

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Thursday, January 30th, 2014

Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush
Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush

Hourglass Mood Exposure Ambient Lighting Blush ($35.00 for 0.15 oz.) is described as a “soft plum.” It’s a rosy plum with subtle warm undertones and a satiny finish. In the pan, it looks more neutral-toned, but when everything is blended and applied, I don’t get any of that neutral (let alone cool) undertone coming through. MAC Lavish Living (LE, $25.00) is darker, more plum-hued, more shimmery. Giorgio Armani Light Rose (LE) is browner, less rose/plum. NARS Lovejoy (P, $29.00) is much darker overall, but applied with a softer application, it is similar–just a little more shimmery. bareMinerals The Indecent Proposal (P, $22.00) is darker, less shimmery. See comparison swatches.

The texture is incredibly soft, finely-milled, and silky, so it blends beautifully on the skin. Though it seems a little powdery in the pan (excess builds up in the corners), it doesn’t look powdery or cakey on the skin. In fact, the powder almost melts against the skin, because it looks natural and smooth; very much that “seamless, soft-focus” look Hourglass was after. This particular shade has a soft sheen that gives skin a glowing, healthy finish but doesn’t emphasize pores or imperfections.  It had good color payoff that was both buildable and blendable.   Mood Exposure wore as well as the other shades–eight full hours before there were signs of fading along the edges. The quality seems comparable across the board from the five (of six) I’ve tried and tested now.

P.S. — As soon as my order of Ethereal Glow arrives and I’ve written up a review for it, I will do a round-up with some overall thoughts and commentary!

The Glossover

P
product

Mood Exposure

A

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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