Last year, Giorgio Armani Maestro Bronzer ($64.00 for 1.0 fl. oz.) launched in Sun Kiss (100), which I really loved as a formula. It was limited edition, but this summer, it’s back along with two more shades (one lighter and one darker) and seems to be permanent. I remember last year that I wished for a rosier and deeper shade for darker skin tones, and now we have one lighter and darker! The formula is thin, almost watery, with a velvety feel that has a more satin finish to it–if you’ve tried the Maestro line at all, the texture is very in line with the rest of the range. It sits extremely well on the skin, whether bare or over/under foundation, and it blends out easily and lasts for nine to ten hours. The only thing I’m not keen on is the packaging, which uses a dropper to dispense the product. One bottle contains a mega-ton of bronzer, so it’ll take a long time to get through a bottle, and I’d rather a half-size option for $40 or so instead (same with the brand’s Fluid Sheers).
MAC Film Noir Blush ($17.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “rich warm chocolate [with a Matte finish].” It’s a very deep, dark burgundy brown with warm, reddish tones and a matte finish. I couldn’t think of any dupes based on products I’d reviewed in the past; it’s much, much darker than anything I was considering (Chanel Plum Attraction, MAC Pressed Amber, NYX Taupe).
NYX Highlight & Contour Palette ($25.00 for 0.72 oz.) is a set of four highlight powders and four contour powders. All of the shades included in the palette can be purchased individually, and the palette is refillable, so shades can be removed or rearranged. The only downside is that they don’t sell the palette empty, and there are two additional highlight powder shades (Bone, Soft Peach) and two additional contour powder shades (Sienna, Saddle) available as singles (each single is $5.00). I liked that two of the four highlighters had some shimmer to them, so for those who like a little sheen to their highlight, you’ll have those options, and you can always tamp down the satiny sheen by dusting one of the more matte highlight powders on top to stretch out the others if you like less shimmer. The contours all had a semi-matte to satin finish, so none were totally matte, and they looked natural on the skin without looking too shimmery or too flat. I had some trouble blending out the contour shades at times, and I had the best luck by applying with a more feathery brush to lay down the general outline of the contour, and then going back to darken as needed. The highlight shades are soft and smooth but powdery.