Thursday, June 27th, 2013

Giorgio Armani No. 06 Fluid Sheer
Giorgio Armani No. 06 Fluid Sheer

Giorgio Armani No. 06 Fluid Sheer ($59.00 for 1.0 fl. oz.) is a deep, vibrant coral-red with gold micro-shimmer. In the bottle, it looks like a softer coral, but one pump, and it might be a bit of a surprise. It can be as intense as you want it to be, so when it’s applied as a sheer layer, it takes on a coral stain with faint gold shimmer, but it’s not as opaque or as vibrant. MAC Simmer is pinker, but when applied sheer, it’s hard to tell the difference. Tom Ford Flush is lighter, but again, applied sheer, the differences are minimized. See comparison swatches.

Fluid Sheer is a multi-tasking formula that can be used in a multitude of ways–really however you feel like–from mixed with foundation, on top, underneath, on lips, and so forth. This particular shade in the Fluid Sheer line is most obviously going to work as a blush on all complexions, but it can also be used as a lip stain and doesn’t feel uncomfortable used that way. It works well layered under foundation as well as patted on over foundation (I used Giorgio Armani’s Maestro, which is a liquid foundation, for both tests). For a shade that is as pigmented as this one, if you fear over-doing it, you can easily take any leftover foundation on your brush and lightly blend along the edges and on top to soften the look without impacting the texture. The shimmer is very fine, so it doesn’t emphasize pores or cause patchiness later on. This shade wore twelve hours on me, and it was still mostly visible–it acted a lot like a cheek stain.

I highly recommend using a very, very little bit in order to avoid over-applying the product, because a little goes a long way, and this is so intensely pigmented!  On the skin, it stays damp and movable long enough for you to blend and soften the color on the skin, and then it stays in place after that, but application is definitely not quite as foolproof as other shades of the Fluid Sheer family.

P.S — Giorgio Armani Beauty is also having their Friends & Family sale now through the 30th, so that’s 20% off + free shipping when you spend $75.

The Glossover

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No. 06

A+

I highly recommend using a very, very little bit in order to avoid over-applying the product, because a little goes a long way, and this is so intensely pigmented! On the skin, it stays damp and movable long enough for you to blend and soften the color on the skin, and then it stays in place after that, but application is definitely not quite as foolproof as other shades of the Fluid Sheer family.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

MAC Adored Mineralize Skinfinish
MAC Tropical Taboo Mineralize Skinfinishes

MAC Tropical Taboo Collection’s Mineralize Skinfinishes ($30.00 for 0.24 oz.) come in five shades: Adored, Gold Deposit (permanent), Lust, Rio, and Soft & Gentle (permanent). Except for Gold Deposit, the Mineralize Skinfinishes are on the lighter end of the spectrum, so for the majority of complexions, they’ll work more as highlighters than blushers or bronzers.  The textures of all five were less powdery than the blushes from this collection.  Gold Deposit was the only one that had a slightly sparkly/less smooth texture.  In my experience, MAC’s Mineralize cheek products don’t last as long as their regular powder blushes do.  I’ve only tested one of the five, and I’m in the process of testing Lust and Rio at this very moment and will update accordingly.  I expect to test the remaining two (which are permanent) tomorrow.  Overall, I think if you normally love and use Mineralize Skinfinishes as highlighters, one of the new shades is worth checking out, but the reality is they’re very similar to each other – each one slightly darker from Adored to Lust to Rio (Rio being the “darkest”).

Adored is described as a “coral with light beige pearl.” It’s a soft, pink-peach with a frosted, champagne shimmer-sheen. This shade is going to work best as a subtle blusher and highlighter on fair skin and then as a subtle highlighter on medium and darker complexions. It is true-to-pan in color, but the texture is soft and finely-milled to the point where it does tend to sheer out as it is applied, rather than build-up. This shade lasted for six hours, and it was noticeably faded after seven hours. On my normal-to-dry skin, it slightly emphasized pores but not too noticeably. MAC Lust is more shimmered and darker. NARS Sex Appeal is matte. MAC Stay By Me is more matte. MAC Light Year is darker, warmer. MAC Keep It Loose is darker. MAC Shell Pearl is slightly pinker, darker. See comparison swatches.

Gold Deposit is described as a “soft reflective golden bronze.” It’s a warm, orange-copper with a golden-copper sparkle and shimmer. The finish on this shade is more metallic, and the texture is a little sparkly, so it’s not as smooth as it could be. It was very pigmented. I will be testing this shade for wear tomorrow. Physicians Formula Light Bronzer is more orange. Urban Decay Baked is slightly less orange, browner. MAC Center of the Universe is similar. MAC Glorify is browner, darker, as is Estee Lauder Topaz Chameleon. See comparison swatches. This shade is part of the permanent range.

Lust is described as a “pale pink with cranberry pearl.” It’s a dirty, warm-toned pink with a frosted, slightly metallic, sheen. The color payoff was good, with the color getting to the same color as seen in the pan, and as a result, it is on the lighter side so medium and deeper complexions may find this acts more as a highlighter than much of a blusher. Because it does have a higher sheen in its finish, it did somewhat emphasize pores and skin texture. I will be testing this one today. MAC Rio is pinker, less beige/brown. Tom Ford Frantic Pink is pinker. Milani Dolce Pink is slightly pinker. MAC Legendary is less shimmery. MAC Born to Love is similar, slightly darker. MAC Definitely Defined is more beige. Bobbi Brown Peony is a touch pinker. See comparison swatches.

Rio is described as a “bronze with bright pink pearl.” It’s a medium pink with a soft, frosted finish and warm undertones. It had good color payoff with true-to-pan color that was soft, finely-milled, and blendable. On my medium complexion, it added subtle pink color and sheen, so for fairer complexions I could see it working as a highlighter and blush more so than on deeper complexions. I will be testing this shade for wear today. Tom Ford Frantic Pink is less shimmery, darker. Milani Dolce Pink is warmer. MAC Stunner is slightly pinker. MAC Easy Manner is less shimmery. See comparison swatches.

Soft & Gentle is described as a “gilded peach bronze.” It’s a warm-toned, champagne beige with a frosted sheen. It had true-to-pan in color, though it is a lighter shade, so on all but very fair skin tones, it act primarily as a highlighter.  It only emphasized my pores/natural skin texture very slightly. bareMinerals The Love Affair is more beige. MAC How Beautiful is darker, browner. MAC Whisper of Gilt is more golden/yellow. NARS Nico is less shimmery, more beige, lighter. See comparison swatches.

P.S. — Nordstrom has these listed for $29.

The Glossover

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Adored

B
This shade is going to work best as a subtle blusher and highlighter on fair skin and then as a subtle highlighter on medium and darker complexions.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Gold Deposit

B
The finish on this shade is more metallic, and the texture is a little sparkly, so it's not as smooth as it could be. It was very pigmented.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
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Lust

B
The color payoff was good, with the color getting to the same color as seen in the pan, and as a result, it is on the lighter side so medium and deeper complexions may find this acts more as a highlighter than much of a blusher.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

MAC Exotic Ember Mineralize Blush
MAC Tropical Taboo Mineralize Blushes

MAC Tropical Taboo Collection’s Mineralize Blushes ($25.00 for 0.10 oz.) sees the launch of three limited edition shades.  All three had rich, intense color payoff, but I did experience shorter wear (which is my typical experience with the mineralize face products), so the ratings reflect that shortcoming.  The other thing was that all three were extraordinarily powdery–the merest touch of MAC’s 116 dislodged quite a bit of powder and left powdery remains pushed to the edges.  MAC’s new 159 brush is better for these, just because it doesn’t seem to disturb the powder as much, so there is less excess and waste, and it is also easier to get less product so you can build the intensity to the desired level rather than starting at level ten.

Exotic Ember is described as an “orange with bronze pearl.” It’s a deep, bronze-shimmered brown with subtle warm undertones. This is a shade that is going to be tricky for some skin tones, amazing on others; I think if you liked Metal Rock, you’ll like the color of this. Aside from the tricky color, the orange shade was difficult to blend with the brown. It was like the two were oil and water and really didn’t want to blend together, so the color looked splotchy applied. I tried it over different foundations (two liquids, a powder, and bare skin), and I still had the same issues trying to get it to look even. I had the best results with I used a fan brush to use it very, very lightly as a contour but the color may not work as a contour for all skin tones (it doesn’t for mine, for reference). As a blush, it did emphasize pores and skin texture. I will try to snap a photo of it being used more as a contour sometime this week. It lasted six hours on my skin, and it was patchy after eight hours of wear (this is typical wear for me with MAC’s mineralize products). MAC Earthshine is less warm-toned, slightly redder/more plum in a way. MAC Pressed Amber is lighter, less warm-toned. Bobbi Brown Bahama is lighter, more plum. See comparison swatches.

Simmer is described as a “burnt rose with peach/gold pearl.” It’s a brightened, pink-coral with gold shimmer. The majority of the color is coming from the red bits, and this is extremely pigmented, so I would use a lot less than you expect and build up. If used very lightly, it only emphasizes pores in a minor way (not too noticeable by others, only if you look in the mirror), but as the color builds up, so does the metallic-like shimmer, which was unforgiving if you don’t have perfectly smooth skin. It lasted six and a half hours on me, and then it was faded and somewhat patchy after eight hours. Tom Ford Flush is more orange. theBalm Frat Boy is more matte. NARS Deep Throat is more muted. NARS Amour is more matte. MAC Star Wonder is less warm-toned but somewhat similar. MAC Flaming Chic is softer, more muted. Benefit Bella Bamba is pinker. See comparison swatches.

Sweet Samba is described as a “dark pink with tan pearl.” It’s a pink-plum with a soft, pearly sheen and neutral-to-cool undertones. It had intense color payoff, so go easy with a brush and lightly tap onto cheeks and then build up the intensity. It’s much easier to build than it is to diffuse and soften if you apply too much. I will be testing out the wear of this shade today.  This had the most forgiving texture and only slightly emphasized pores/the natural texture of the skin. theBalm Cabana Boy is less pink, more plum. NARS Oasis is darker, more plum. NARS Outlaw is similar, more subdued. MAC Mocha is pinker. MAC Star Wonder is lighter, more shimmery. MAC Gentle is pinker. See comparison swatches.

P.S. — Nordstrom still has these listed for $23.50.

The Glossover

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Exotic Ember

C+
The biggest problem was that this didn't want to blend; the two shades didn't want to come together as a single shade, so the end result was a rather splotchy, uneven color that needs some work to get just right. For those who have missed Metal Rock, they may enjoy this shade and find it worth the extra time to get it to look even on the skin, as these types of shades are hard to come by.

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Simmer

B
While it was intensely pigmented, the texture was surprisingly powdery (even allowing for baked products in general). It lasted only six hours on my skin (which is normal to dry), and it was faded and somewhat patchy by the eighth hour of wear.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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LE
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Sweet Samba

B+
Sweet Samba was richly pigmented, though somewhat powdery, and was the most forgiving finish once applied. It only very subtly emphasized pores/skin texture compared to the other two.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

Giorgio Armani No. 04 Fluid Sheer
Giorgio Armani No. 04 Fluid Sheer

Giorgio Armani No. 04 Fluid Sheer ($59.00 for 1.0 fl. oz.) is a warm-toned, sheer yellow with a subtle, luminous shimmer and sheen. As a highlighter, the effect is similar to Chanel Or or bareMinerals The Shining Moment to a subtler degree (see comparison swatches here).

Fluid Sheer is described as “an illuminating veil of radiance” that can be used as a base, corrector, or “radiance [booster]” applied alone, over, mixed with, or under foundation, as well as applied as a more traditional blush, bronzer, or highlighter (depending on the shade and your skin tone/color). No. 04 make look intimidating in the bottle, and when initially pumped out, it’s definitely yellow, but it sheers out beautifully to a soft, yellowy shimmer that will work really well on warmer complexions to add a golden warmth and sheen. I like it mixed with moisturizer or foundation (depending on what I’m doing), as well as patted along the high planes of the face as a highlighter.  When mixed with foundation, the wear seems to be the same as whatever I normally get with that particular foundation (but there’s no breakdown of the foundation because of this), and when worn just as a highlighter (as I am in the photo below), it wears seven hours well, and then starts to fade away.

It’s definitely a very versatile, nearly error-proof formula, because it’s spreadable, blendable, and can be worn over/under liquids as well as powders. Some liquid products don’t react well to powder and end up looking patchy or start flaking away, but this worked nicely even layered on top of setting and finishing powders as a last minute addition.  One bottle will last you quite awhile, because a little goes a long way (be careful when pumping out the product if you only want to use it as a spot highlighter/blush).

P.S. — I recommend watching Dustin Hunter’s video on the Fluid Sheers, because his video is what made me NEED this.

P.P.S — Giorgio Armani Beauty is also having their Friends & Family sale now through the 30th, so that’s 20% off + free shipping when you spend $75.

The Glossover

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product

No. 04

A

It's definitely a very versatile, nearly error-proof formula, because it's spreadable, blendable, and can be worn over/under liquids as well as powders. Some liquid products don't react well to powder and end up looking patchy or start flaking away, but this worked nicely even layered on top of setting and finishing powders as a last minute addition.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Saturday, June 22nd, 2013

Edward Bess South of France Quad Royale
Edward Bess South of France Quad Royale

Edward Bess South of France Quad Royale ($45.00 for 0.25 oz.) is described as a “shimmery sand.” It’s a pale, pink mauve with a golden shimmer and sheen. Milani Dolce Pink is warmer, darker. MAC Rosy Outlook is pinker, less shimmery. MAC Blush All Day is less shimmery, darker. MAC At Dusk is less shimmery, darker. Chanel Pink Cloud is similar. Bobbi Brown Peony is darker. See comparison swatches.

It was fairly true-to-color as it looked in the pan, which is rather light, so this is a product that will work best on fairer complexions. On my medium skin tone, it’s mostly a highlighter that adds a little plum to my cheeks, but I really had to layer it on – and as a result, it looked a bit cakey and did emphasize pores. When I later tried to wear it as more of a highlighter, then it looked better and only slightly emphasize pores (the finish is rather frosted). The texture of the blush was soft, though a bit powdery, but finely-milled and easy to blend out. It seemed to last about seven hours on me, and then it looked somewhat patchy after eight hours of wear.

The Glossover

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product

South of France

B+

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Friday, June 21st, 2013

Wet 'n' Wild Bikini Contest Color Icon Bronzer
Wet ‘n’ Wild Bikini Contest Color Icon Bronzer

Wet ‘n’ Wild Bikini Contest Color Icon Bronzer ($3.99 for 0.46 oz.) is a medium-dark, orange-toned tan with a soft, champagne shimmer-sheen finish. MAC Hibiscus Kiss Bronzer is more orange. Burberry Copper Glow is slightly warmer. MAC Lush Light Bronze is slightly browner. MAC Refined Golden is darker. Burberry Copper Glow is more golden. See comparison swatches.

It had a soft, finely-milled texture that applied evenly and smoothly. The more the product is worked into the skin and buffed out, the more refined the shimmer becomes and more natural the glow looks. It adds a lot of warmth, some orange tones, but it isn’t too frosted on the skin, so it doesn’t emphasize pores or the skin’s natural texture. Bikini Contest was easy to apply and blend out, and on my warmer complexion, didn’t look sunburnt or too orange. I think it may be too orange-based for cooler skin tones, though. When I wore it, the bronzer lasted seven and a half hours well on my cheeks, and after eight hours, it started to fade.

The Glossover

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product

Bikini Contest

A-

This is a fantastic budget-friendly bronzer! If you've been scared of bronzer or uncertain about what shade would work best, you might consider this formula.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

Results
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