Lip Plumpers: Pink Pearl, Rose Flush, Peach Glow;
Palette: Buff, Tawny Apricot, Granite; Blushing Peach, Blushing Pink
Laura Mercier’s First Blush Collection recently debuted at retailers and Nordstrom.com. I believe just this morning it launched on LauraMercier.com, as well! It’s a fairly small launch, relative to many of the other major beauty brands this season, with just a palette, brush set, three lip plumpers, and two nail polishes.
The First Blush Palette ($55.00) contains three eyeshadows (Buff, Tawny Apricot, and Granite), two blushes (Blushing Peach and Blushing Pink), and three lip glazes (Flushed, Natural, and Naked). My favorites of the palette are both blushes; they’re both soft, smooth powder blushes in complimentary tones. The peach is soft and light, while the pink is pretty neutral and subtle. The eyeshadows didn’t impress me overly so, as I’ve definitely seen these shades many times before. Buff was a little chalky, which totally turned me off. The lip glazes were pretty, but I imagine they are at least semi-sheer when actually applied to lips (my swatches ran thicker). The shades of lip glazes are flattering on most skin tones, and they’re soft and springy for sure.
The First Blush Lip Plumpers ($30.00 each) are pretty, but with a price tag like that, I had to pass. I don’t need a lip plumper, so I see no reason to pay that much for a Laura Mercier gloss (their Lip Glace is $22 a pop). Pink Pearl is a sheer, pastel pink–not terribly unique–but it’s a face friendly color that works easily and can be used everyday. Rose Flush is a brownish red that goes on sheer and glossy. Similarly, Peach Glow is just as glossy, but the color is a brighter coral-orange shade.
I didn’t have much time to play with the brush set, though from what I could tell, it felt nice enough. I have plenty of brush sets myself, so I don’t see myself buying more at this time, which is probably why I didn’t fight through the crowd at the Laura Mercier counter to see them better! The nail lacquers were also being used, but they were both soft, subtle shades designed with spring in mind.
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Mystic Eyes Quad
Chanel’s Bohemian Fantasy Collection for Spring 2009 is a stunning combination of light and dark shades, sheer glossimers, and potent lipsticks.
Mystic Eyes Quad ($56.00) contains four neutral shades of eyeshadow: a light grayish-silver; a soft milky pink; near neutral shimmer brown; and a dark, charcoal-brown. Even though the shades themselves are not original or unique, they are classic shades perfect for neutral eyes, work-safe/school-safe/court-safe (ha!) looks. The shimmer in them is low, with some having a velvety finish with just a subtle sparkle to them. I will say I do prefer Chanel’s Beiges de Chanel quad much more (from winter), but these have more shimmer than winter’s quad, which may make it more agreeable for others. I decided to wait before buying this quad, because I wanted to see if Dior’s quints for spring caught my eye first (they didn’t–not enough to purchase, at least). I may go back for this, but I’m going to hold out and see how long my lemming lasts before committing!
Liberty Eyeshadow ($28.50) is a pretty shade of whitish-apricot with a lot of frostiness to it. It would make a nice all over wash or highlighter, and being the Soft Touch Eyeshadow, it does feel like silk. Magic Night Eyeshadow ($28.50) is kind of what I wanted 100 Strokes to be–it’s a rich, smooth burgundy-black with subtle shimmer. Fandango Powder Blush ($42.00) is a pretty shade of peachy-brown with a sheen of gold shimmer. It’s well pigmented, and I’m not entirely sure if it’ll be too dark for complexion or if it’ll end up muddying me more than giving me a nice blush color! But it sure LOOKS pretty!
Beige Guitar Glossimer ($27.00) is a very sheer but shimmery shade of gloss; it has a lot of pinky-peach shimmer, but it definitely appeared multi-colored to me. Wild Rose Glossimer ($27.00) swatched like a gorgeous, subtly shimmered rose-pink. I thought it was just gorgeous, and I bought it right away. I was more disappointed when I tried it on at home (I really oughta try things on in-store!), because it fit the definition of “my lips but better.” Of course, that’s not inherently a bad thing, but I was expecting a little more.
Bohemian Fantasy released a lot of lipsticks, most of them in the Hydrabase formula ($28.50 each) with a few in Aqualumiere ($28.50) and two Ultra Wear Lip Color ($34.00). Here is a quick run-through of the colors:
Rose Rebelle is a soft, reddish rose shade that’s not too intense nor too sheer.
Euphoria is a pinkish-coral with red tones to it. Not quite as intense as Gipsy Scarlet.
Fiesta is a softer version of Fuego–a coral-red with some sheerness to it.
Fuego is an intense coral-red with orange tones.
Beige Desire is a high sheen brownish-beige shade.
Gipsy Scarlet is an intense pinky-red with a good amount of sheen.
Malta is a beige/nude shade with a rosiness to it, so it could work out really well for those afraid of going too nude.
Positano is a sheer nude shade with a slight gold sheen to it.
Opal Rose is a bright, warm-toned pink–perfect for a spring pout–that goes on creamy then dries down.
Alexandrite is a phenomenal shade of deep red; it’s one of those shades of red that just grabs your attention. It reminded me of Perpetuate by MAC, which I dearly love.
I will review the two Nail Colours (Django and Vendetta) in a separate post, to be written soon I also hope to get some Chanel lip swatches done in the next few days.
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Row 1: Color Fever Plumper in City Mauve, Downtown Pink, Fuchsia Flaunt,
Rose Punk; Color Fever Lipstick in Forget Me Not
Row 2: Color Fever Lipstick in Mademoiselle, Pink Attitude;
Color Fever Gloss Piha Black
Lancome’s Pink Irreverence Spring Collection is currently available on Lancome Online, as well as your major retailers for Lancome, like Nordsrom’s. I must admit I did not immediately want anything from this launch; the original promo photo I saw didn’t get me excited. Having seen this collection, I’ve totally changed my mind!
If there is one gloss you get this spring, make it La Laque Fever in Electric Pink. It is an amazing hot fuchsia-pink that’s utterly dazzling. These photos do not do the color justice–I totally urge you to make a stop by your local Lancome counter and test it for yourself. The other shades of La Laque are lovely; the high shimmer/glitter factor is really fun, but the texture doesn’t feel gritty.
I am really eying Color Fever Lipstick in Pink Attitude, because it looks exactly like Cle de Peau Gloss #2 in lipstick form. You know, one of my favorite colors ever–so you know I have to have it in lipstick form, too. Pure Black La Laque is an extremely intense, pitch-black black liner. Like seriously black. It also looks wet even when it’s dry, so it adds a lot of depth to any look when used. Layer it with Pure Sparkle La Laque for added glimmer!
Everything else was lovely and pretty no doubt, but the products mentioned above are ones I felt stood out and really grabbed my attention. I think the Color Fever Plumpers in Downtown Pink (glossy reddish pink) and Fuchsia Flaunt (coralish shimmer) are stunning, but they are drowned out by the Laque Fevers. City Mauve is creamy without shimmer in a mauvey nude shade, while Rose Punk looks like clear gloss an shimmer to me.
The other lipsticks available in the launch are creamy and smooth, and of course, Rock Icon Fuchsia really stands out being such a bright shade of fuchsia. Both Forget Me Not (rosy nude) and Mademoiselle (browny-nude) make good everyday colors, when you don’t want to wear Piha Black Color Fever Gloss (sheer, shimmery black).
Irreverent Madame is the quad with the pink shadows in it. I wasn’t overly impressed by the four shades, but it isn’t a bad quad. I’m just not in need of any of the colors, and none of them really wowed me in actual color. You know me, I’m over the chalky black trend, so that killed one. The deeper pink is nice, but since I have similar shades, I can easily pass. Mademoiselle Sass is a warmer quad with a peachy-pink shade that’s lovely, as well as a warm gold shimmered brown.
Lancome also featured two shades of Color Design Pro in Hard to Get and High Expectations, which can be used on eyes or face, apparently. I only swatched these, so I don’t know how they actually work in practice. The colors seemed fine to me, though High Expectations seemed a bit dark to use on the face–but it actually sheers out quite a bit and would look great on deeper complexions.
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MUSE Artist Eye Palette Row 1
If there’s one spring collection that’s been a sleeper, it’s Smashbox’s Muse Collection. It was one of the first collections to be available online (at Nordstrom’s), but I didn’t seem to hear about it much. I haven’t even seen a real review on it yet! So imagine my surprise when I happen upon it at Nordstrom’s last week, and the lovely Smashbox artist tells me they’re sold out!
The MUSE Artist Eye Palette ($48.00) contains ten eyeshadows along with an eyeshadow brush, and every eyeshadow has a great finish, texture, and color pay off. The first row is almost a lighter, pastel version of the second row of colors. It’s a great idea, because then you know you can do a lot of easy 2-3 color looks with this palette. The texture is buttery and smooth–no chalkiness, no skipping. The colors are rich and very much how they appear in the palette, which I can appreciate, since I hate feeling duped! Stila’s Precious Pearl Palette still has my heart, but Smashbox did a great job and offers bargain buy of ten shadows for $48 (Stila’s contains six and costs $40).
The MUSE Lip Paints ($21.00) are semi-sheer glosses with a colored base and then gold shimmer. Artiste is a reddish coral shade, and it is the darkest of the three. Virtuoso is a peachy, creamy shade, while Luminary is a warm baby pink. They’re all pretty, but none of them stood out and made me feel like I had to get one. The MUSE Rush Blush ($24.00) is a nice peach-toned pink shade that’ll go great on warm toned skin, and I think would still work well on cooler toned skin. It’s matte in its finish, and the pigmentation reminded me a bit of NARS blushes. Smooth and rich without being powdery. I must say, for the price of the Lip Paints or Blush, I’d rather just put my money towards the Eye Palette.
Finally, the MUSE Cream Eyeliner Artist Pencil Set ($36.00) contains three richly pigmented liners in Antique Gold, Imperial, Lapis, and Slate. At my counter, I only saw three out, which I believe are Antique Gold, Lapis, and Slate. These liners are really smooth with no skipping, an the colors are vibrant and true to color. The set of four for $36 means you get each for $9, which is pretty good when it comes to more high-end eye liners. I was tempted to get these, but since they were sold out, I had no choice but not!
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Stila’s Precious Pearl Collection not only features the so stunning Precious Pearl Palette, but four shades of Pearl Shimmer Gloss ($22.00 each):
- South Sea Coral Soft peach with white shimmer
- Pearlescent Pink Mid-tone pink with shimmer
- Ocean Currant Deep, sheer berry with pink and red shimmer
- Pearl Kitten Universally flattering warm pink-champagne with shimmer
I was able to try out South Sea Coral, which is a soft, semi-sheer peachy shade with multi-colored shimmer; as well as Pearl Kitten, which is a frosty, shimmery beigey color. It almost looks brown in the tube, but the formula itself is pretty sheer so it ends up working out when applied to lips. I preferred South Sea Coral, because on my lips, it’s almost like a sheer, milky peach with subtle gold shimmer. Pearl Kitten is richer in shimmer and gives my lips a bronzy look.
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Yes to Carrots Frosty Loves C Holiday Set contains three of Yes to Carrots C Me Smile Lip Butters in Mint, Carrot, and Berry. There are two other flavors (not included), which are Citrus and Melon. I couldn’t actually find a retailer online which sold the holiday trio, but each of the lip butters retails for $3.69 at major drugstores/retailers (drugstore.com, Target, Walgreens, etc.). If you can snatch a few up on sale, even better! My favorite flavors are Berry, Carrot, and Citrus–Citrus probably being my numero uno (I adore lemony-scented products).
I love these tubes of lip moisturizing delight because they’re–duh–incredibly moisturizing, but they smell delicious. I also feel like I don’t have to reapply all the time, because my lips stay soft for quite awhile. As far as natural and organic products go, I’m pleased to be able to tell you that this product is certified as USDA organic. The brand doesn’t practice animal testing, nor do they use parabens, petroleums, or phthalates.
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