Sunday, May 1st, 2011

Laura Mercier St. Tropez Lipstick
Laura Mercier St. Tropez Lipstick (Right)

Laura Mercier St. Tropez Lipstick

Laura Mercier St. Tropez Lipstick ($22.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a semi-opaque, darkened beige with a little peachiness and marigold shimmer. The texture is really smooth, soft, and delicate; these remind me a lot of Guerlain’s Rouge G finishes–just the way the shimmer plays with the lip color and how it sinks into lips (in a good way, such that the color looks one with your lips).

Laura Mercier’s Shimmer Lipsticks have a rather strong floral scent to them, while several of her other lip products are heavily vanilla scented (not sure why these are different). I get three to four hours of wear (about average), and I find these neither drying nor particularly moisturizing, but they are comfortable to wear. Sandcastle applied evenly and easily without having to layer on a lot to get opaque color.

The Glossover

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Laura Mercier St. Tropez Lipstick Review, Photos, Swatches

A
It applies and wears so beautifully while looking natural on lips, despite the darker hue, and the way the shimmer warms up the color is very fine and subtle.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Saturday, April 30th, 2011


MAC Packed to Go: 4 Lips & Pressed Powder

MAC Packed to Go: 4 Lips & Pressed Powder

MAC Packed to Go was originally a duty free launch, but it’s landed online at maccosmetics.com now. It features several sets of products, and I’m reviewing three of the offerings. The reason I am not reviewing the rest is because they contain products I’ve reviewed in the past or are permanent shades. 4 Lips & Pressed Powder ($38.00) contains four lipglasses: Riviera Ready (warm light nude), Poetic License (pale apricot), Rosehips (mid-tone rosy pink), and Quick Change (mid-tone cool blue rose) along with one powder:  Belightful (gilded peach bronze). Poetic License, Rosehips, and Belightful are repromotes.

  • Riviera Ready is a warm, yellow-based nude with soft gold shimmer. It is semi-sheer on lips. C-Thru is the closest permanent gloss, but it is less warm and creamier.
  • Poetic License is a milky peach-pink with subtle pink and gold micro-shimmer. It is semi-sheer on lips. It seems closest to Florabundance.
  • Rosehips is a rosy plum with a creamy finish. It is semi-opaque on lips. It is lighter than Lust.
  • Quick Change is a rpasberry pink with lots of golden shimmer. It is semi-sheer on lips. I can’t think of a permanent dupe in MAC’s line for this, but it is similar to Korres #18 Peach lipstick.
  • Belightful is a champagne bronze with flecks of bronze glitter. The glitter is noticeable on skin but not chunky. I did feel it emphasized the texture of my skin, though. Try theBalm’s Mary Lou-manizer as a dupe.

If you’re familiar with MAC’s holiday palettes from last year, the packaging is very similar–this palette is just all black and has no special design on the outside. Each lipglass well contains 0.049 oz. of product (total of 0.196 oz.), while the powder is 0.17 oz. In the palette, you’re getting $16.72 worth of lipglass and $13.96 worth of powder (I believe the Iridescent Powder retailed for $23 for 0.28 oz.). The palette is actually more expensive than the amount of product you actually get, though you do get to try five different products for $38.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Packed to Go 4 Lips & Pressed Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

C+
The lipglasses are always sheerer in the palettes than they are in tubes, which makes application frustrating. Belightful was sheer and difficult to apply evenly.

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

7/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, April 29th, 2011

NARS Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil
NARS Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

NARS Summer 2011: Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

NARS Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.08 oz.) is described as a “pink cantaloupe,” while the Velvet Matte Lip Pencil formula is all about “rich pigment” delivered via a “jumbo-sized crayon” that imparts a “velvet matte finish.” It’s supposed to be long-wearing without being drying, while still being creamy. This shade has been added to NARS’ permanent range.

I thought the color was closer to that of grapefruit, but I guess if cantaloupe was pink, it might look something like this (and then kind of like grapefruit, ha!). It’s a lightened pink with just a hint of coral. It looked more coral swatched than it did once I applied it to my lips, though.  It actually bears a lot of similarity to MAC Ever Hip, though ever-so-slightly paler and, obviously, the finish is different as Bolero is matte.

The finish is completely matte, and with the lightness of the color, there is a touch of settling into lip lines and emphasis on any imperfections of the natural lip but really quite little overall and not noticeable from a normal viewing distance (you know, not close-up!). It does have enough creaminess in the texture to easily apply it, smooth it out, and get a nice layer of even color, and the pigmentation is excellent–really dense, opaque color without having to wear the pencil down to a nub.

With some of the really deep shades of the Velvet Matte Lip Pencil line-up, I can see six to eight hours of wear, but with a lighter shade like Bolero, it wore just over four hours (which is slightly above average for a light color like this, where I normally see three to four). The length of wear was good and above average, but it’s not excellent. I did find Bolero a little drying by the fourth hour.

These aren’t your best bang for your buck lip product, considering you only get 0.086 oz. for $24–a NARS lipstick contains 0.12 oz. but also costs $24.00. They do apply color more precisely than a lipstick, because it has a more chiseled tip, but the cap is not as secure on this jumbo-sized lip pencil than it is on a lipstick–such a game of trade-offs! I didn’t find that the cap was easy to come off, but I do acknowledge it is less secure by its nature than lipstick.

The Glossover

LE
product

Bolero

B
If the wear was more on par with long-wearing lipsticks (including other shades within this range, which tend to be six to eight hours), the product would have rated higher. I think the color is one that will appeal to many, and it should work well on both cool and warmer skin tones, as the pink dominates over the coral, making it flattering on both.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, April 29th, 2011

NARS Wonder Lipgloss
NARS Wonder Lipgloss

NARS Summer 2011: Wonder Lipgloss

NARS Wonder Lipgloss ($24.00 for 0.28 oz.) is described as a “shiny, sheer mandarin orange laced with pink and gold shimmer.” It was a very reddened orange with flecks of gold and pink shimmer but less distinctly orange when worn.

Funny enough, this is a product described as sheer but actually is rather semi-sheer to semi-opaque! It’s a very buildable gloss, so it can go from a sheerer wash of color to more medium coverage  (though you can still clearly see my natural lip color through the gloss–it has a lot of color but still a lot of translucence) without feeling like you have to apply half the tube to do so.  One pull of gloss gets you sheer, a second pull gets you to what you see here.

NARS Lipglosses have a thinner consistency that’s mostly non-sticky (though sometimes, there is the odd gloss out), and the past several shades I’ve tried, are also scent- and taste-free. (In the past, some NARS glosses had a plasticky scent.) Wonder applies smoothly and evenly, and it gives lips a really plump, juicy look with the high-shine finish. I typically get three to four hours of wear out of NARS glosses.

The Glossover

LE
product

Wonder

A

Surprisingly buildable, it is easy to wear at sheerer levels as well as more opaque levels. It wears well, evenly, and leaves lips looking really lush.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

MAC Summer Shower Lipstick
MAC Summer Shower Lipstick

MAC Fashion Flower: Lipsticks

The collection features four shades of Lipstick (each $14.50 for 0.10 oz.) — Ever Hip (bright creamy coral), Growing Trend (mid-tone taupe nude), Mlle (light white pink), and Summer Shower (light aqua).

  • Ever Hip is a pink-based coral with a creamy, slightly glossy finish.  It’s semi-opaque to opaque on lips, depending on how much you layer it. It has a cremesheen finish.  MAC doesn’t have a comparable permanent dupe to it, unfortunately.
  • Growing Trend is a medium dark beige nude with a creamy finish.  It has an amplified finish.  It’s a shade or two darker than Viva Glam Gaga 2 and has less peach (this almost looks a touch pink next to it).
  • Mlle is a pale, blue-based light pink. It looks a little dry on lips (perhaps more like a frost finish, except it lacks the shimmer part of a frost), but it didn’t feel drying. It has a glaze finish, and it is a repromote–but from many, many years ago. It seems like a paler version of Pink Plaid, cooler version of Creme Cup. This would work best on cooler skin tones.
  • Summer Shower is very much a near-to-clear base with teal, fuchsia-purple, and white shimmer and sparkle. It’s more of layering lip product than one you’d wear on its own (in general). I can’t think of a permanent dupe for it. It has a glaze finish. This would work across skin tones.

my thoughts on the formula: MAC Lipsticks are vanilla-scented but taste-free. I typically get four hours of wear, but some of the lighter lustre and glaze finishes tend to disappear by hour three. Amplified cremes and amplified finishes, however, tend to go beyond four. I find the formula comfortable to wear and not drying (but not moisturizing–a couple of the matte shades can be drying).

The Glossover

product

MAC Fashion Flower Lipstick Swatches, Photos, Reviews

B
Mlle doesn't look as flattering as worn as one would like--it has a drier look, even though the texture itself was smooth and applied evenly. Summer Shower looks fun in the tube but keep in mind it is more about the multi-colored reflective shimmer than the actual color!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

MAC Fashion Flower Lipgelee
MAC Fashion Flower Lipgelee

MAC Fashion Flower: Lipgelees

The collection features three shades of Lipgelee (each $14.50 for 0.10 oz.) — Budding Beauty (pale coral with pearl pigment), Fashion Flower (pale pink with pearl pigment), and Now in Season (pale yellow with pearl pigment).

  • Budding Beauty is a coral melon with pink and gold shimmer.  It has more of a shimmery finish than the glittery texture of Fashion Flower and Now in Season.  When applied, it has a very milky melon look–semi-sheer for sure, though.  Love Nectar lustreglass seems like the closest permanent dupe.
  • Fashion Flower is a pink-tinged gloss with lots of pink and silver glitter. It’s a lot like the previous launches of Lipgelees (Lillyland, Cham-Pale) — super glittery, little color, lots of sparkle. I’d say it’s most like Luxure, but applied, Fashion Flower pulls pinker.
  • Now in Season is a pale yellow gold with multicolored shimmer of teal, gold, and silver.  This felt so sticky, which is uncharacteristic of lipgelees.  When worn, it doesn’t deliver much color, just lots of shimmer/glitter.  It’s surprisingly similar to Bubble Lounge when worn, since the color base doesn’t show up.

my thoughts on the formula: MAC Lipgelees are moisturizing, easy to apply, and last three to four hours on me. They are a thicker formula, more like a gel, and come in squeeze tubes. They have a non-sticky texture, are vanilla-scented, and a sheer formula, but these are noticeably sticky. There is some glitter migration (maybe four or five flecks), but it didn’t seem like rapid migration nor did it stray into the far reaches of my face or hair or somehow wander to my feet. I have always loved that the Lipgelees come with 0.5 oz. of product–nearly double even large-sized glosses. After they wear away, they can sometimes feel gritty, because of the abundance of glitter.

The Glossover

product

MAC Fashion Flower Lipgelees Swatches, Photos, Reviews

B
If you love your lips to sparkle beyond belief, you'll likely enjoy these Lipgelees--they are sparkle-tastic! Though the glitter doesn't seem to travel and migrate throughout the day, it may feel gritty after the gloss wears away and the glitter remains.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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