Monday, July 19th, 2010

NARS Strawberry Fields Lip Gloss
NARS Strawberry Fields Lip Gloss

Who knew NARS could do opaque lipgloss?

NARS Strawberry Fields Lip Gloss ($24.00 for 0.28 oz.) is a richly pigmented, near-opaque shade of deep strawberry pink (but I almost want to call it raspberry–the product name makes me want to stay on track, though). It’s the most pigmented lip gloss I’ve ever tried by NARS–and I’m really quite (pleasantly) surprised by it.

Of course, not every lip gloss needs to be opaque, and there is certainly a time and place for even the sheerest glosses. I’ve just come to accept that NARS glosses are generally sheer and that’s that. Strawberry Fields is a dominating shade in comparison to the NARS range. It’s bold and bright without being too much; it will give your lips definition and zero in the focus to them, but it’s not a traffic-stopping shade.

I got about three hours of wear this shade, and then a slight stain that wore on for another hour or two. It was scent- and taste-free (not even a hint of waxiness/plastic!). I do like NARS glosses for their moisturizing properties, too. Though $24 may seem steep for a lip gloss, NARS delivers much more than the average lip gloss does–0.28 oz.–which makes them as expensive (by the ounce) as MAC lipglasses.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: NARS is really stepping it up with their fall collection from the select pieces I’ve tried so far. If you dig opaque lip glosses and have been looking for something in a deep pink shade, Strawberry Fields may be something to check out.

AVAILABILITY: NARS

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Sunday, July 18th, 2010

Guerlain Galante Rouge G Lipstick
Guerlain Galante Rouge G Lipstick

Ahh, Rouge G — I Still Love You

Guerlain Galante (09) Rouge G Lipstick ($46.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a slightly brown-tinged, plum-kissed pink. Sephora describes it as a “rosy plum,” and I see the plum, but I also feel like you can’t not say there’s some brown in there, too. It’s a shade that’s difficult to describe. Not that that really matters, because it’s such a beautiful shade.

Every time I apply one of the Rouge Gs, I am reminded of how amazing the formula is. It’s soft, smooth, and moisturizing while delivering rich color in a whole slew of universally flattering shades. Galante has this subtle light rose pink micro-shimmer that dazzles and shimmers in the light in such a lovely way. I love the way they feel and wear–I get anywhere from three to six hours, depending on the shade. With a shade like this, I usually hit the four or five hour mark.

Guerlain’s Rouge Gs are scented with fragrance, so if you’re sensitive to scents, you may want to stop by and give it a whiff before committing $46 to it. I don’t notice it when I wear it, only when I smell the tube itself, but I’m not bothered by it either way. I still have a secret wish that they made the Rouge G formula available without the fancy case (which is truly fancy with its substantial weighty feel and flip mirror), just so the price wouldn’t be as high.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: This is one of my favorite shades of Rouge G — it’s so flattering without being neither bold nor subtle!

AVAILABILITY: Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Sephora

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Friday, July 16th, 2010

Bobbi Brown Guava Lipstick
Bobbi Brown Guava Lipstick

The Summer Season: Bobbi Brown Guava Lipstick

Bobbi Brown Guava Lip Color ($22.00 for 0.12 oz.) is an opaque shade of peachy coral with no shimmer, just a soft sheen, and a creamy feel and look.  It applies beautifully and makes lips look fuller and softer.  This is a great way to wear coral without being too coral, and it’s a fitting shade for summer without being bright or bold, too.  It’s not sheer so it’s still noticeable, though.  Gotta love the scent- and taste-free nature of it, too!

Is this the right coral for you? Would you wear it?

The Summer Season is a series of posts featuring bright, vibrant shades of coral, orange, and pink lipsticks and lipglosses — all perfect for a summer of fun — that runs through July 2010.

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Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

MAC Dazzle Lipstick
Dazzleglass: Boys Go Crazy, Fabulous Fun, Glamour OD, Hi-Falutin’, Spanking Rich, Utterly Posh, You Got the Look

MAC Digi-Pops: Dazzleglass

Oh, Dazzleglass — why must you be so pricey for such a teeny, tiny amount?  It’s really such a shame, given your packaging–all long and round and large in the right places! Dazzleglass is a slightly tacky, thicker lip gloss with a high dosage of glitter with sheer to semi-sheer color.  Nordstrom will see seven shades as part of Digi-Pops, but for whatever reason, they’re not available for pre-order online (but I know stores were doing pre-orders for them).

Glamour OD, Spanking Rich, and Utterly Posh are repromotes, but the other four shades are new.

Dazzleglass ($18.50 U.S. / $21.50 CDN)

  • Boys Go Crazy is a darkened plum-berry purple with iridescent purple and blue-violet glitter.  It’s a little vampy but the sheerness keeps it from being a total, in-your-face kind of shade.
  • Fabulous Fun is a semi-sheer, brightened fuchsia-pink with fuchsia-purple glitter.   It gave my lips noticeable color, but it’s still on the sheerer side.
  • Glamour OD is a brightened red with a touch of silver and pink glitter. This is a repromote.
  • Hi-Falutin’ is a sheer, softened peach-coral with gold glitter.  It looks more like a milky peach with subtle gold glitter on lips.
  • Spanking Rich is a semi-sheer, softened pink mauve with fuchsia glitter. This is a repromote.
  • Utterly Posh is a semi-sheer darkened orange with a little brown and orange-gold glitter. This is a repromote.
  • You Got the Look is a brightened tangerine orange with almost teal glitter.  It has a rather milky base, and it needs to be applied with some precision to keep it from gathering when you press your lips together.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I’m always going to get frustrated with the itty bitty amount of product you get in each dazzleglass, despite the the lip gloss being rather pretty.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom (on the 15th/16th)

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Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

MAC Dazzle Lipstick
Dazzle Lipstick: Naughty You, Smash Hit, Snazzy, Sweet Bits, Troublemaker, Wham, Win-Win

MAC Dazzle Lipstick for the Glitter Lovers

Check out part one for details on the formula!

Dazzle Lipstick ($14.00 U.S. / $16.50 CDN)

  • Naughty You is a semi-opaque brightened medium pink with fuchsia glitter.  It’s a brighter, less cool-toned version of Troublemaker.  The application went on pretty even, and the glitter seemed to stay in place for the most part.
  • Smash Hit is a sheer beige-gold with darkened gold glitter. It’s a warmer version of Liquid Lurex.  Since it’s rather sheer, the glittery bits are more noticeable and thus look gritty rather than smooth (but again, it doesn’t feel gritty).  I’d use this layered underneath a lipgloss.
  • Snazzy is a semi-opaque, red plum with fuchsia-purple glitter.  This is one of the most pigmented shades of the thirteen dazzle lipsticks.  It has a nice level of color coverage and is also the most wearable, because it’s glittery without being metallic.
  • Sweet Bits is a semi-sheer grayish lilac with multi-color glitter. It’s kind of like Vex eyeshadow in lipstick form.  I find this color a little hard to wear on its own, so it’s definitely more of a layering shade.  It also has a tendency to look gritty (but it doesn’t feel that way) and has a decent amount of slip-slide with the glitter, so it may look uneven.
  • Troublemaker is a semi-opaque, darkened red-pink with fuchsia glitter. It’s a darker, more opaque version of Naughty You.  I had a lot of slipping with this shade–I definitely had to be careful not to press my lips together or else the color and glitter seemed to smear around and look uneven.
  • Wham is a red-brown with gold and copper glitter.  This one also had a fair amount of slipping when I pressed my lips together–so be careful should you choose this shade.
  • Win-Win is a light baby pink with blue undertones and lilac glitter.  It’s very cool-toned and almost veers on a lilac pink or a milky pink.  It’s very sheer, so it’s better layered with another product than alone, if only because it looks more obvious that you’re wearing glitter with it by itself.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I like the concept, just because it is fun and different from other lipsticks I have. I did find that some of the glitter can slip-slide and end up looking rather uneven on lips if you’re not careful about application. It’s not a big deal, because you just have to make yourself conscious of it.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

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Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

MAC Dazzle Lipstick
Dazzle Lipstick: Baby’s On Fire, Glaringly Hip, Hellraiser, Hot Sass, Infused with Glam, Liquid Lurex

MAC Dazzle Lipstick for the Glitter Lovers

Twenty lip swatches later… and now it’s time to actually go through and review the new Dazzle Lipsticks!  MAC has put out thirteen shades of their newest lipstick formula, which contains micro-glitter to the max.  Think Dazzleglass but in lipstick form!  These will debut with Nordstrom’s Digi-Pops Collection (officially out on the 15th) and then later hit MAC stores and other department store counters on August 5th.  I originally previewed Digi-Pops here.

Dazzle Lipstick ($14.00 U.S. / $16.50 CDN)

  • Baby’s On Fire is a softened ruby red with silver and scarlekt sparkle.  It’s a semi-opaque shade that gives a good dose of color without feeling or looking heavy.  It’s dazzling and shimmery without being unwearable–the glitter in this one also didn’t seem to slip-slide all over my lips.
  • Glaringly Hip is a semi-sheer muted peach with brown undertones and pink and white glitter.  It doesn’t look amazing by itself in my opinion–it seems a little clumpy and gritty (even though it doesn’t feel gritty!).  There was some glitter shifting, but it wasn’t too bad.
  • Hellraiser is a sheer, darkened mauve-plum with bluish-silver glitter.  This one looks and feels like a lustre finish, even though it clearly has all the micro-glitter one could ask for.
  • Hot Sass is a semi-opaque, brightened orange with reddish-copper glitter.  It delivers decent color pay off without too much glitter shift.  It’s one of the more pigmented shades, too, and it doesn’t yellow teeth too much, either.
  • Infused with Glam is a semi-opaque, warmed-up brown with red undertones and gold and copper-red micro-glitter.  You won’t want to smoosh your lips together too much, because the glitter can shift around and look uneven.
  • Liquid Lurex is a sheer yellow gray-gold with silver and copper micro-glitter.  This is an interesting shade, though I think it’d be better paired with a lipgloss on top.

The formula isn’t gritty, but there is a noticeable texture–it’s like you know there’s glitter, therefore you can feel it when you press your lips together, but it’s not what one would describe as gritty.  Even as the lipstick fades, the glitter never transforms into something gritty, but you will likely find glittery bits around your lips and on them by the end of the day.  (I think I have enough sparkle to light up Times Square at the moment…)

They are the very definition of sparkling–very glittery, shimmering, and dazzling–but the effect may be too much for some to wear alone.  A creamier gloss can help to minimize the effect a bit (but still getting some of it), or you can really amp it up by topping with Dazzleglass or Superglass (if you’re really feeling fun!).  The Dazzle lipsticks are going to be something some will love, others will loathe–just depends on your style and preferences.

They wear about two to three hours, though the more pigmented shades run closer to three and a little more than two–which is just below average for MAC lipsticks for me.   The glitter stays on for longer but the base color fades in the time frame I mentioned.  Like other MAC lipsticks, these are vanilla scented and come in the traditional black bullet.

MAC describes these as “long-wearing” (not the case for me) with “rich, creamy color.”  I get creamy–they feel moisturizing and almost like glaze/lustre lipsticks–but the majority don’t seem to have rich color.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I like the concept, just because it is fun and different from other lipsticks I have. I did find that some of the glitter can slip-slide and end up looking rather uneven on lips if you’re not careful about application. It’s not a big deal, because you just have to make yourself conscious of it.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

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