Friday, August 17th, 2012

MAC Hidden Treasure Blush
MAC Hidden Treasure Blush

Not So Hidden Blushes with This Treasure

MAC Hidden Treasure Blush ($20.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “rich burnt red.” It has a velvet finish, according to the back, though the press release had originally listed it as a satin. The color is a dark rusted red with a very subtle sheen, no detectable shimmer or the like, and a warm, red-orange undertone. MAC Ring of Saturn is lighter and has more of a golden sheen–it would still look very similar if used lightly. Tom Ford Savage is lighter, more muted, less red. NARS Liberte is more orange, less red.

The texture is just slightly dry, though it packs plenty o’ pigment–you’ll absolutely want to use a light hand with this blush (and might I also recommend a stippling brush, like MAC’s 187 or 188?).  Since it’s a little drier, it doesn’t blend out as effortlessly as some other blushes. It does take more time and effort to get a soft, faded edge.  I think this blush will look exceptionally beautiful on darker skin tones, because it has great depth and color.  I tested the wear of this shade, and it wore for a full eight hours and was just slightly faded along the edge.

The Glossover

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Hidden Treasure

B+
Despite the marginally dry texture, I think this is a worthwhile blush to check out if you have a medium-dark to dark skin tone--it will read really nicely against the skin. Lighter complexions will be able to wear this, but because blending is not a cinch, it may be more of a challenge to use without looking like you're suffering from sunburn!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Chanel Fleur de Lotus Joues Contraste / Blush
Chanel Fleur de Lotus Joues Contraste / Blush

Chanel Fleur de Lotus Joues Contraste / Blush ($43.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “joyful color.” It’s a warm coral with a hint of pink and a satiny sheen. This is definitely a color we’ve seen pop up several times over the year. MAC Fleet Fast is similar, slightly darker and has a more golden sheen. Tom Ford Flush is brighter, more matte in finish. theBalm Frat Boy is pinker. Tarte Blissful is a touch pinker, brighter, and more matte.

This shade is a Nordstrom exclusive, and it’s a very pretty, summery coral with a lovely sheen that gives the face a warm, ethereal glow.  While it seems pigmented enough, it’s hard to build up color on the cheeks, so it’s not a blusher I’d recommend for medium-dark to dark skin tones. It delivers both subtle and more medium color, so for those with paler complexions, it is easy to use without fear of going overboard.  The texture is soft, finely-milled, and not powdery.  It feels like silk against the skin and lies beautifully once applied.  Fleur de Lotus is also extremely blendable and wore for eight hours without fading.

The Glossover

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Fleur de Lotus

A-
Fans of Chanel's silky-soft blushes will enjoy this take on coral, which isn't too orange or too pink. It has a soft sheen, no shimmer or sparkle, so it looks natural against the skin.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Monday, August 13th, 2012

Guerlain Peach Boy Blush Duo
Guerlain Peach Boy Rose aux Joues Blush Duo

Guerlain Goes Two-for-One with New Blushes

Guerlain Peach Boy Blush Duo ($50.00 for 0.21 oz.) contains a vibrant orange-coral with a mostly matte finish and a gold-shimmered peach-coral. Combined, the two work together to create a soft gold-shimmered, light-medium coral-orange. For the dominant shade, the color is more intense than NARS Gilda but less intense than NARS Exhibit A; MAC Modern Mandarin has a soft sheen that makes it appear just a hair lighter, while MAC Out for Fun is very similar. Make Up For Ever #5 is also simimilar in color.

The lighter shade is lighter and less coral compared to Make Up For Ever #153, more golden than Tarina Tarantino Feather, and softer than Tom Ford Lovelust. Together, it reminded me of a pinker MAC Ripe Peach, more shimmered MAC Marine Life, shimmered version of Chanel Tweed Brun Rose, or gold-shimmered Tom Ford Lovelust.

Each blush duo is designed to have a dominant shade that yields a pop of color, while the smaller shade can be used blended in or used to highlight or contour.  In Peach Boy, I think it’s safe to say that the bottom shade is a highlighter, given it’s shimmering content and finish.  It definitely works that way.  The darker shade was soft, had good color payoff, but was never powdery–it wasn’t as blendable as I’d like, though it was not too stubborn to work with. I’d recommend using a light hand with the color; it builds nicely and doesn’t go on true-to-pan with one touch, but it can look heavy quickly.

The lighter shade was soft, a little creamier in a way, and blended out beautiful on the cheeks. The shimmer seemed large when I swatched, but it came together nicely on the cheek; it didn’t emphasize pores and yielded a beautiful sheen.  I liked them best together, though, as the highlighting shade alone doesn’t have a lot of color, and when they’re used blended together, you get something with a lovely sheen and just enough color.

When I tested the wear of the darker shade, it wore for eight hours and had no fading that I could note.  The lighter shade wore for eight hours with minor fading.  Together, they wore for eight hours with very minor fading along the edges.  The textures of Guerlain’s new blush duos are very reminiscent of their eyeshadow palettes, which have a drier texture–just a bit firmer–but still finely-milled and soft.  The duo comes with a brush, which was soft enough to be usable, though I still preferred to use a full-sized brush. Also worth mentioning is that the powder is lightly perfumed (in line with other Guerlain powder products).

The Glossover

palette

Guerlain Peach Boy Rose aux Joues Blush Duo Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
The concept of a blush duo is great--you get a little more bang for your buck, because you get two colors instead of just one, and because the two are meant to work with each other, so you have a lot of layering opportunities available.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Sunday, August 12th, 2012

NARS Undress Me The Multiple
NARS Undress Me The Multiple

Please Stay Dressed, NARS

NARS Undress Me The Multiple ($39.00 for 0.5 oz.) is described as a “ballerina pink with silver shimmer.” That should be upgraded to silver glitter–it’s much, much chunkier than sparkle. I don’t think I’d describe it as micro-glitter but regular glitter or a mix of small and large-sized glitter particles. The color itself is a pale, just slightly cool-toned, pink. MAC Lazy Sunday has a similar effect and look on, though it has no sparkle. MAC Full of Joy is much cooler-toned, to the point that it looks almost lilac. MAC New Order has gold sparkle and is slightly darker. Make Up For Ever #303 would have a similar effect on cheeks, though it has a frosted finish and is slightly cooler-toned.

Multiples are supposed to work for eyes, cheeks, lips, and body with a cream-to-powder formula that is creamy, has sheer color, and blends effortlessly. Lots and lots of readers love Multiples, and as much as I’d like to fall in love, I haven’t. Maybe I haven’t tried the right shades–Undress Me certainly isn’t one of those right shades. It’s very, very sparkly in a way that emphasizes pores and has noticeable flecks of glitter that just seem randomly dispersed. The glitter also traveled to places unknown (and known places included my hair line, nose, and chin) while I wore it. One of the problems I have with Multiples is their short wear time; Undress Me looked noticeably faded after four hours (and much of the glitter had tried to escape by that point as well) and was completely gone after six hours.

The texture is a little dry; it’s definitely a cream-based product, but it’s stiff. This was agony on the lips; I took photos, but I had visions of the photos making their way into the bowels of the internet. They were… not pretty and were wrong on so many levels. On the lips, it was unbearably dry, and the glitter was gritty. I don’t like Multiples on the lips, but this had to have been the worst I’ve attempted using on lips.

It’s not disco-ball highlighter–it’s something else entirely. I don’t think it’s flattering, and the problem with glitter is that if it’s not catching the light, it just looks like a chunk of silver.  Without the glitter, I think this might be more manageable, but with it, it’s riddled with problems.  The short wear time, traveling glitter, and dry, difficult-to-blend texture make this a no-go for me.  I kept trying to find ways to make it work over the past few weeks, but it was always the same story.  It’s best on bare skin, because it’s most blendable there, and it tended to just smear my liquid foundation around if I used this over it.

The Glossover

LE
product

Undress Me

D+
It's not disco-ball highlighter--it's something else entirely. I don't think it's flattering, and the problem with glitter is that if it's not catching the light, it just looks like a chunk of silver. Without the glitter, I think this might be more manageable, but with it, it's riddled with problems.

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

3/5

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Thursday, August 9th, 2012

NARS Gilda Highlighting Blush
NARS Gilda Blush

Gilda the Good Blush

NARS Gilda Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “perfect coral with a hint of red.” It’s an orange-coral with a little burnt red tinge and matte finish. NARS Exhibit A is much more intense, deeper, and redder. MAC Modern Mandarin is brighter with a satin finish. Make Up For Ever #5 is richer in color but similar in color. MAC Out for Fun is a cream blush but very comparable in color.

The hint of red is readily apparent in this blush, and for some, it may bring out any underlying redness and give that sunburned look that’s less-than-lovely.  If you don’t have a lot of natural redness in your cheeks, this should read prettily on your skin.  The texture is soft, finely-milled, and looks natural against the skin. Despite the matte finish, it doesn’t look dry or flat, and it never accentuates pores or skin imperfections.  Gilda has good color payoff, though you don’t have to fear too much about overdoing it–you don’t need a feathery hand like you do with Exhibit A. It’s buildable, blendable, and a good alternative to Exhibit A if it just seems too intense for you. When I wore this, Gilda lasted for a full eight hours and didn’t have any fading at all.

The Glossover

P
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Gilda

A
It's buildable, blendable, and a good alternative to Exhibit A if it just seems too intense for you. If you already own Exhibit A, you can always just use it really, really lightly, because the two look fairly similar when applied.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Monday, August 6th, 2012

NARS Gaiety Highlighting Blush
NARS Gaiety Blush

Once More with… Gaiety!

I reviewed this blush just seven months ago when it originally launched with NARS’ spring collection. This is mostly a summary and an update with newer, better quality photos along with the diffused flash/studio lighting for the full face photos along with an updated list of potential dupes (based on added product swatches).

NARS Gaiety Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “bright candy pink.” It’s a cool-toned cotton candy pink with strong blue undertones and a mostly matte finish. I remember some readers inquiring about its similarity to NARS Desire, which I did not own previously, but now that I do, I can say that it’s far, far different–Desire is darker, richer, much more intense overall. MAC Full of Joy is lighter, more purple. MAC Peony Petal is darker, pinker. MAC Azalea Blossom is more purple. MAC Briar Rose is pinker.

Gaiety has a soft, touchable texture that’s finely-milled but not powdery. It delivers decent color payoff, but with it being a lighter color, it will take some layering to achieve true-to-pan color on medium to dark complexions. On lighter skin tones, it’s a very wearable pale pink with blue undertones–perfect for those with similarly cool undertones. I re-tested the wear, and it still wore well; a solid eight hours with very minimal fading along the edges.

The Glossover

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product

Gaiety

B+
It delivers decent color payoff, but with it being a lighter color, it will take some layering to achieve true-to-pan color on medium to dark complexions. On lighter skin tones, it's a very wearable pale pink with blue undertones--perfect for those with similarly cool undertones.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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