Thursday, May 31st, 2012

MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour
MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Evening Stroll Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour ($20.00 for 0.43 fl. oz.) is described as a “violet cream.” It’s a red-toned purple that can look pinker when sheered out, but it’s still more purple than it is pink, no matter how sheer you go. If you’ve ever wanted a “true purple” blush, this gets you close. I couldn’t think of a comparable blush shade; MAC Azalea Blossom isn’t as purple, and MAC Sakura is much pinker. If you’re looking to replicate it as a lip color, MAC Seasoned Plum is slightly darker, MAC Playtime is pinker, MAC Goes and Goes is darker, less pink, and MAC Go For It is slightly less pink.

This is a new (and limited edition) product and shade. MAC describes the new formula as “[v]ersatile, lightweight all-in-one colour for cheeks and lips … [c]reamy, super-blendable, barely there” with vitamin E. I think the best way to think of this product is like this: you’ve spent all day at the beach, and you don’t have time to go home and get ready for an evening out, so you quickly pat on one of these on your lips and cheeks–you look a little dressed up, but it’s never over-the-top, and it’s always natural and easy-going. That’s the best way I can describe the formula in a big picture sense. (The only problem is that this scenario isn’t exactly hygenic usage of this product.)

As a Cream Blush

If you like matte and loathe words like “dewy” and “glowy,” this isn’t the right cream blush formula for you. These are rather dewy on my normal-to-dry skin, and they never seem to dry down completely for me. It feels a little “oily” to the touch; it doesn’t seem oily or greasy, but there’s some kind of slickness that enables it to be pushed and moved around even after a couple of hours after application. I was expecting it to wear off quickly as a result, and while the two shades I’ve trialed (Evening Stroll and Weekend Getaway) so far haven’t made it a full eight hours, they both wore for six hours before starting to look faded.

The consistency is soft, pliant, and creamy without being too thick (it’s not as thin as the Cremeblend Blushes, but it’s not as thick as the Blushcremes were), so it spreads and applies over the skin easily. Though it’s not sticky, there is transfer when I pressed my finger against my cheek or even just put a cloth against it (I wanted to pretend that it was clothing, because there have been many times where I’ve transferred makeup onto my fiance’s shirt). Because not a lot of product is applied to begin with, it’s not as if it all “kisses” off, but some does transfer over. It is vanilla-scented, though I didn’t notice any odd taste when using it on my lips.

I found the best application method was using fingers, because it enabled it to melt better against the skin and blend out evenly. I also liked the 188 and 130 brushes, and both achieved a similar result, they just took a little longer. It blends well over foundation and on bare skin, though I prefer the look of it over foundation, because I don’t have perfect skin, and it just seemed to make my cheeks look splotchier than usual more often than not, and I felt like my pores were beacons in the night, but I’m also more sensitive to “dewy” finishes.

The spectrum of dewy to oily is always hard to judge, because it really ends up being a matter of taste. There are times where I love the glowy, dewy finish of a product, and a reader will comment about how oily my skin looks–and there are times where I think something makes my skin look oily, and then a reader will comment about the glow! On my skin, it read slightly more pronounced than natural dewiness finish–there was a definite sheen and shine that went and went for nearly the entire time it wore.

As a Lip Color

Oddly, though, when it is applied to lips, it has a tendency to really dry down and set, almost feeling clingy without being sucked into every nook and cranny on the lips. It is incredibly lightweight and natural-looking on the lips. Despite the thin consistency on the lips, it’s not drying. It wasn’t moisturizing, but  it wasn’t drying. I recommend using lip balm prior to applying this product, and possibly exfoliating lips, because it does cling and will emphasize any flakes or roughness on the lips. It’s more forgiving than a true matte lipstick, but it can do so. On the lips, I was able to get four hours of wear out of Evening Stroll.

MAC was very generous with this product; it contains four times the amount of most lipsticks or twice the amount of most blushes (for instance, this is over double the size of the Cremeblend Blushes). This is great, except, this is a tub of product that is best applied with fingers yet cream products are much more prone to inhibiting bacteria. I would use this by taking a small amount out with a clean utensil (like a cosmetic spatula), and then using your fingers at that point. Otherwise, I think this is the type of product that will easily spoil before you finish it. A little goes a long way, both on cheeks and on lips, so this oversized pot of color will last you quite awhile.

The Glossover

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product

Evening Stroll

A-
I think a lot of people will love these, but there will be some who will not. If you don't like dewy finishes, or if you have really oily skin around your cheeks, I'd look elsewhere for a cream blush option. If you're looking for better wear out of your blush, I'd also steer you somewhere else. I liked it best as a lip color, surprisingly.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, May 17th, 2012


MAC Launch Away! Blush

MAC Launch Away! Blush

MAC Launch Away! Blush ($21.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “true peach” with a satin finish. It looks a little pinked in the pot, but it’s more like a darkened peach–in the pot. On me, though, it turns rather pink! It’s a light-medium peony pink with warm undertones and a subtle sheen. MAC Crew is warmer and a touch darker, and this is noticeable on the cheeks, too–but Crew is also less buildable and pigmented compared to Launch Away! MAC Flower Fantasy is lighter and has a higher sheen. Chanel Brompton Road is a bit lighter and shows up less on the cheeks. Benefit Hervana is darker and sheerer. Burberry Peony is very similar but has more of a true matte finish.

It has the same drier, stiffer texture of Fleet Fast, which is typical of MAC blushes, especially of their satin finished blushes. The powder is soft to the touch and applies smoothly.  The finish of Launch Away! is very subtle–the sheen is barely there and almost imperceptible once applied.  It builds up easily and gave my cheeks noticeable color without having to pile it on, but it is a paler, lighter shade, so it would not be ideal for deeper skin tones–particularly because the drier texture paired with the near-matte finish can look chalky on darker complexions.  When I wore this one for wear, it managed just under seven hours and started to decline and fade after that.

The Glossover

LE
product

Launch Away

B+
This is another blush that is going to be best on lighter complexions, but it will work well with both cool and warm undertones. If you don't like a lot of shine, shimmer, or sparkle in your blush, you may also really like the finish of this shade.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, May 17th, 2012


MAC Fleet Fast Blush

MAC Hey, Sailor Collection — Fleet Fast Blush

MAC Fleet Fast Blush ($21.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “pinky golden coral” with a satin finish. It’s a muted red-coral with a golden shimmer-sheen. Tom Ford Flush is more vibrant with less shimmer. MAC Immortal Flower is softer and pinker with more of a sheen than a shimmer. Tarte Glisten is very similar but with a more pronounced sheen. Illamasqua Dixie is much more intense and vibrant. Tarte Blissful is brighter and warmer. Tarina Tarantino Feather is lighter. theBalm Frat Boy is a touch pinker and doesn’t have the shimmer/sheen. MAC Early Morning is looks almost burnt in comparison–a little redder.

Even though this and Launch Away! (the other blush in this collection, which I will review after I finish concluding this post!) look rather different in the pot, they don’t look nearly as different once applied. The major difference is the overall tone, as this shade is warmer and redder, while Launch Away! appears pinker.  The texture is soft, finely-milled, and a little stiff/dry; it’s not dry in a bad way so much as it’s just that type of texture. It’s not soft and dense and buttery.  Fleet Fast has good color payoff and applies well against the skin and adds coral and gold warmth to cheeks.  It blended out nicely when I used the 116 to apply it.  I tested out the wear of both blushes yesterday (with some really excellent timing, I managed to test four cheek products, each for eight hours!), Fleet Fast wore for about seven hours before having some minor fading.

The Glossover

LE
product

Fleet Fast

B+
This will work well on light-medium to medium-dark complexions, particularly those with warmer undertones. It may look a bit more orange-coral on cooler skin tones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Thursday, May 17th, 2012


MAC Crew Highlight Powder

MAC Crew Highlight Powder

MAC Crew Highlight Powder ($29.00 for 0.35 oz.) is a multi-colored highlighting powder that has three primary shades: soft peach-orange with an almost matte finish, subtly yellow-toned light-medium pink with a satin-like finish, and a cool-toned pink-lilac with a satin finish. There’s also creamy beige hue, but this is an overlay of color and does not go all the way through. I made two gouges in the product to see how the colors went through, and it seemed like each main color is really what’s underneath a 1-2mm layer of the creamy beige. The composition of this reminded me of Benefit Sugarbomb and Benefit Hervana.

When the product is swirled together, the end result is a coral-tinted pink with yellow undertones. It looked a bit chalky against my skin tone when I swatched it, but it was less chalky applied to my cheeks. I think the lighter color paired with a slightly matte finish gives it a drier look, which translates into chalky on my medium skin tone. There is a very faint satin sheen, but it’s incredibly subtle. For those who love more shimmery, metallic highlighters, this is on the opposite end. MAC Flower Fantasy is lighter and shimmery. Chanel Brompton Road is lighter. Chanel Blush Horizon de Chanel is darker, yellower. Benefit Hervana is similar but more coral, lighter. Chanel Pink Cloud is lighter, less pink. MAC Stunner is darker, warmer. Burberry Peony is a smidgen darker and warmer.

The texture is soft, smooth, and finely-milled.  If you want to use it as a blusher, it’s certainly do-able, even on medium skin tones.  I don’t know if this genuinely highlights as it does brightens and adds some natural color to the cheeks that’s not too warm, so it’s instantly brightening and should be flattering on both cool and warm undertones.  It wore around eight hours on my cheeks before staring to fade around the edges.

The Glossover

LE
product

Crew

A-
If you want to use it as a blusher, it's certainly do-able, even on medium skin tones.  I don't know if this genuinely highlights as it does brightens and adds some natural color to the cheeks that's not too warm, so it's instantly brightening and should be flattering on both cool and warm undertones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

NARS Liberte Blush
NARS Liberte Blush

NARS Liberte Blush

NARS Liberte Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “burnished apricot.” It’s a burnt orange-red with a very subtle sheen. Fans of NARS Exhibit A will probably enjoy this–it’s just a bit darker, more muted compared to Exhibit A. It’s not as bright; it reads softer, and the subtle sheen gives it a more luminous look on the cheeks. MAC My Paradise has a similar feel, though it is a touch lighter.

Admittedly, it’s horrible on me, but I think this is something that will look absolutely stunning on deeper complexions. There’s just something about this color and my particular skin tone that makes it read “terribly sunburnt” rather than “gloriously blushing.” It is also an interesting shade, because it reinforced my feelings that this collection was more of a split personality than anything else–this blush would complement the Ramatuelle trio, but it doesn’t work at all with the Marie-Galante duo (similarly, Moscow looks awful with Marie-Galante but would work with Ramatuelle).

It can be used both intensely and more sheered out, depending on how heavy-handed you are and what brush you use.  I’d recommend a stippling or really fluffy brush if you wanted a softer look, because this powder is rather pigmented.  The texture is a little on the drier, powdery side, so blending wasn’t effortless–it did take some maneuvering to get the edges to diffuse properly.  I ended up cheating a bit and using a pat or two of foundation over the edges, because it just wasn’t getting there for me.  A good method to try is to apply a very soft layer first, diffuse that, and then apply a bit more exactly where you want it.  I wore this yesterday for wear, and it wore for seven hours with just a little fading along the cheekbones.

The Glossover

product

Liberte

B+
If it was easier to blend, this would product would have been an A- product, but it takes substantial effort to get it to blend out and soften along the edges. The pigmentation is fantastic, and this will be lovely on deeper complexions.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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Saturday, April 14th, 2012

Tom Ford Flush Cheek Color
Tom Ford Flush Cheek Color

Tom Ford Flush Cheek Color ($55.00 for 0.28 oz.) is a vibrant coral-orange with a subtle satin-like sheen and a faint shimmer. It’s very similar to Illamasqua Dixie, which is a little pinker and has a cream formula. Tarte Blissful is also incredibly close, and it even has a similar texture. theBalm Frat Boy is similar but a touch pinker.

Flush can be applied sheerly with ease or built up to a medium color coverage–it has enough pigmentation to work on deeper skin tones without being too intense on lighter skin tones. The finish has a natural sheen that isn’t heavy, shimmery, or frosted, so it doesn’t emphasize pores or the texture of the skin. It’s a very flattering shade on warmer skin tones, and though it is more coral-orange than coral-pink, the vibrancy gives it more wearability on cooler skin tones.

The texture of Tom Ford’s blushes is impressive, and truth be told, of all the items from his makeup range, the blushes have been the most impressive. Everything else has left me lukewarm or just a little excited, but the blushes have been fantastic. The texture of Flush is slightly less dense than Lovelust and Wicked, but the texture is very finely-milled, so it feels like silk and melts against the skin. It wore for ten hours and looked just barely faded along the very top of my cheekbones.

The Glossover

P
product

Flush

A+

It's a very flattering shade on warmer skin tones, and though it is more coral-orange than coral-pink, the vibrancy gives it more wearability on cooler skin tones.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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