Thursday, November 10th, 2011

NARS Catfight Lipstick
NARS Catfight Lipstick

NARS Catfight Lipstick

NARS Catfight Lipstick ($24.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “nude mauve.” It has a semi-matte finish, which is supposed to yield full color coverage, be long-wearing, and moisturizing from the inclusion of conditioners and antioxidants. I don’t know if I’d use the word “nude” to describe this color. It’s a pink-plum with a subtle, cool undertone running through it. The finish is decidedly semi-matte–it has the look of a matte overall but there’s a little sheen there, and the sheen is still visible from afar. MAC Hot Gossip is pinker and glossier but similar in color.

NARS’ Semi-Matte Lipstick formula wears four to six hours on me, and when I wore Catfight out for errands, it wore welll for four hours and needed reapplication at five. It’s unscented and tasteless to me. I don’t find it hydrating; it’s not as drying as some matte finishes are, but it’s not comfortable to wear for longer than three hours. I had strong urges to apply balm by that point!

The Glossover

P
product

Catfight

B
I wish it was more hydrating or less drying, because wearing it for longer than a few hours results in rather dry, chapped lips. I'd recommend wearing it with balm or gloss on top or underneath to help combat that particular issue.

Product

7.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

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Thursday, November 10th, 2011

La Prairie Translucent Cellular Treatment Loose Powder
La Prairie Translucent Cellular Treatment Loose Powder

La Prairie Translucent Cellular Treatment Loose Powder

La Prairie Translucent Cellular Treatment Loose Powder ($80.00 for 2.20 oz.) is available in two shades, Translucent 1 and Translucent 2, both of which are loose powders designed to set makeup and mattify the skin. It is also supposed to add radiance to the skin. Worth noting is for the price, you get a large, full-size (2.0 oz.) along with a travel-sized version (0.20 oz.), both of which are refillable (though, I did not spy any refills available online, so it may be an in-store purchase only).

I should probably be using Translucent 2, which is designed for warmer skin tones (and also for those on the darker side of the spectrum), but the product I received and tested was Translucent 1. I don’t have extremely strong yellow undertones, so that’s probably why I was able to get away with Translucent 1, which is generally more suitable for cooler skin tones and those on the lighter end of the spectrum. Loose Powders are a product that really needs to be tested on the face with an appropriate applicator, because merely swatching it on your arm or the back of your hand will rarely yield the same result. For reference, I’ve done an arm swatch only just blended so the product is still visible against my skin as well as before-and-after photos of the loose powder applied with a fluffy powder brush (MAC 134).

This powder has shimmer in it, and initially, when I first swatched it against the skin, I was like, “Ooh, boy, that is SO not going to work!” Lo and behold, it mattified without giving the skin an unnaturally dry appearance. The subtle reflecting particles help deliver that soft focused look that gives the skin the appearance of a softer, more even appearance. There are numerous loose powders on the market with similar properties, so it’s not unique to La Prairie’s by any means, but these types of powders work exceptionally well on camera. They’re picked up and read back beautifully.

La Prairie’s loose powder is extremely finely milled–so soft it feels like silk and almost comes together like a cream. It applies easily without looking caky and disappears against the skin when a flick of the brush. It sets my makeup in place and keeps it there for eight to ten hours without needing to re-powder or blot. While testing this, my skin was fairly normal, and like many of you, I do get a little oilier around my t-zone. Without a powder, my t-zone looks oily after six hours and foundations can feel slick on the skin, but I felt like everything remained solid until that eight hour mark.

The price point–as far as La Prairie goes–is not nearly as high as I’d expect, given the amount of powder you receive. For reference, popular setting powder Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder retails for $34 and contains 1 oz. of product, which works out to be $34/oz., while La Prairie is $36.36/oz. It’s a higher initial price tag, but for something like setting powder, once you find the one that works for you, it’s a staple product you use everyday and will eventually use up. (Unless, of course, you have trouble committing to a product for long–like me!) I do like that you get a travel-sized version with you, though; it’s just convenient for keeping in your makeup bag or when you’re traveling. And if you don’t intend to travel, you can use the small size and refill it using the larger jar; this means keeping the large jar totally clean for the years it’ll take to finish it.

I have a good number of go-to setting powders, and La Prairie does everything it’s supposed to do.  It doesn’t compel me to switch, as I have found that many loose powders perform equally well on my skin type, it’s not just puffery.  It is definitely one I would reach for on a special occasion for its exceptional ability to give skin a softer, smoother appearance.

The Glossover

coming-soon

La Prairie Translucent Cellular Treatment Loose Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

A
I have a good number of go-to setting powders, and La Prairie does everything it's supposed to do. It doesn't compel me to switch, as I have found that many loose powders perform equally well on my skin type, it's not just puffery. It is definitely one I would reach for on a special occasion for its exceptional ability to give skin a softer, smoother appearance.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

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Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Bobbi Brown Onyx & Silver Eye Paint Palette
Bobbi Brown Onyx & Silver Eye Paint Palette

Bobbi Brown Onyx & Silver Eye Paint Palette ($45.00 for 0.12 oz.) contains four shades of Bobbi Brown’s Long-Wear Eye Paints. They’re designed to not only wear for hours but are “densely pigmented” and “can be applied wet or dry” with a “lustrous, highly-reflective finish.”

It includes these shades: Tinsel (light silver), Silver (blue silver), Lava (black with silver pearl), and Blue Onyx (deep indigo blue)

  • Tinsel is a bright silver with silvery-white glitter and a metallic finish. It’s sheer both dry and wet, and it doesn’t come together smoothly even when applied wet–I had a lot of fall out with this shade. It’s a bit lighter than MAC Filament.
  • Silver is a dark silver-shimmered gray with subtle brow undertones and a bluish sheen. It has decent color payoff when applied dry but becomes opaque, deep, and smooth when applied damp. It reminded me of theBalm Muppetational, which is a bit lighter. MAC Tundra is also similar in both color and finish.
  • Lava is a matte black with silver sparkle and teal shimmer layered on top. It’s a better version of Bobbi Brown Onyx. It’s in the same vein as shades like MAC Black Tied and Lancome The New Black (which is the best of this type). When applied dry, the sparkle is less noticeable, and it appears as more of a black-brown with a dry, almost chalky look. When applied damp, it’s much more intense, more like a black, and the sparkle comes out more. I did experience some fall out with this shade.
  • Blue Onyx is a blackened blue with an indigo blue shimmer and sheen. It’s more of a satiny finish than metallic as described. This shade was very, very sheer when applied dry, and it doesn’t look all that blue either. When I dampened the product, it came out more vibrant and the blue came to the forefront. It reminded me of MAC Blue Storm. Givenchy Lune Mordoree is also similar but a touch purpler.

If you’re a fan of MAC’s Mineralize Eyeshadows, you’ll probably like Bobbi Brown’s Long-Wear Eye Paints, because they’re really similar. They have the feel, look, and wear of baked eyeshadows. If you use them dry, expect sheerer color payoff, while dampening the shade will greatly intensify the pigmentation and smooth out the texture. The colors are prone to fading during wear if you use them damp/wet during application; of course, they will always dry a little more muted than when they are initially applied wet since it does not stay perpetually wet, but it fades even more.

Tinsel had a ton of fall out; it was difficult to apply from the get-go because of the amount of excess that littered my under eye area, but I had continual fall out throughout the day because it just doesn’t bind together. You’d really need a sticky base to get it to adhere to minimize the fall out. I had similar issues with Lava but to a lesser degree; I didn’t have too much fall out during application, but I did find the silver sparkles transferred to parts unknown as the day wore on.

The Glossover

palette

Bobbi Brown Onyx & Silver Eye Paint Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

D+
Fading and fall out -- two big no-nos when it comes to eyeshadow, and they're too prevalent in this palette to make it worth recommending. As far as baked eyeshadows go, these are some of the more basic shades, so I think using pressed alternatives is your best bet.

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

3/5

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Wednesday, November 9th, 2011


China Glaze Nail Lacquers in Blue Year’s Eve, Glittering Garland, Twinkle Lights, Icicle

China Glaze Let It Snow: Blue Year’s Eve, Glittering Garland, Twinkle Lights, Icicle

To round out China Glaze’s Let It Snow Collection, we have the final four: Blue Year’s Eve (shimmering blue), Glittering Garland (glittery green), Twinkle Lights (mix of glittery shades), and Icicle (silver shimmer).

  • Blue Year’s Eve is a medium-dark blue with lighter blue shimmer. It almost has a violet edge to it. It was mostly opaque in two coats–there was a hint of visible nail line at certain angles. MAC Ming Blue was the closest dupe I could think of, but it is a bit darker.
  • Glittering Garland is a deep, dark blackened-green base with lighter forest green shimmer–it almost looks like flakes of sparkle to me. It was opaque in two coats. The base color reminded me of China Glaze Jolly Holly but mixed with the shimmer from ORLY It’s Not Rocket Science.
  • Twinkle Lights is a mix of gold, emerald green, and ruby red glitter suspended in a clear base. It was surprisingly opaque at two coats, and I’d expect a third to have made it opaque or just nearly. I couldn’t think of any dupes, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there were a few.
  • Icicle is a bright silver foil with slightly darker silver micro-glitter. It dries super quick and was opaque in two coats. It looked a lot like China Glaze Cheers to You, but Icicle is slightly less metallic but not by much and a touch lighter.

I didn’t have any notable issues with the formula on these four.  Blue Year’s Eve was less pigmented than anticipated but still was just about opaque in two coats; I could only detect visible nail line faintly at certain angles under a fair amount of lighting.  Icicle seems the most dupeable out of this set, while Glittering Garland was the shade I felt stood out the most; there’s something about the way the shimmer is shaped and set in the base color.  These polishes weren’t too thick or too thin, had good, even flow, and applied easily.  I typically get a week of wear with minimal tip wear with China Glaze’s formula.

The Glossover

coming-soon

China Glaze Let it Snow Collection Reviews, Photos, Swatches (Part 3)

A
China Glaze's Let It Snow collection is classic holiday that still manages to put forth a few shades that are a bit different from polishes I already have. I like that they mixed a few layering shades along with creams and shimmers.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4.5/5

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Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Video Review: MAC Dazzlespheres First Impressions & Swatches

We’re going through MAC’s Dazzlespheres collection, which features lipgloss kits, pigment sets, and even a mini nail set!  First impressions/thoughts along with live swatches!

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Bobbi Brown Chocolate/Bronze Dual-Ended Eyeliner
Bobbi Brown Chocolate/Bronze Dual-Ended Eyeliner

Bobbi Brown Chocolate/Bronze Dual-Ended Eyeliner

Bobbi Brown Chocolate/Bronze Dual-Ended Eyeliner ($24.00 for 0.02 oz.) is described as a “dark brown” and “golden chocolate.” Why a brand comes out with a limited edition eyeliner formula will never make sense to me, but Bobbi Brown’s done it this season with a dual-ended eyeliner that’s long-wearing, pigmented, and silky smooth. One shade is designed to brighten while the other to define.

  • Chocolate is a dark chocolate brown with warm, red undertones. It’s fairly opaque in a single go, but it delivers full color coverage with two passes. It’s similar to MAC Brown Border and Chanel Brun-Teak.
  • Bronze is a medium-dark coppery brown with flecks of bronze and copper shimmer. It’s nearly opaque in one pass. It’s similar to Urban Decay Bourbon, but this has a redder base. Chanel Brun-Cuivre seems similar.

I’m totally peeved these are limited edition, because the formula on these is excellent! These are easily some of the softest eyeliners I’ve ever come across, but here’s where they excel: they’re actually long-wearing. Typically, the creamier the eyeliner, the less likely it is to actually remain on the lash line by the end of the day. Bobbi Brown’s new and limited edition dual-ended eyeliners stay put extraordinarily well but still have that ultra creamy, oh-so-soft texture that makes application dreamy. These glide on like butter, feel like silk on, and don’t budge, smudge, or migrate.

Besides the limited edition nature of the eyeliner, these are half the size of your average pencil eyeliner. Most pencil eyeliners are 0.04 oz., while this one is only 0.02 oz. Plus, Bobbi Brown’s Creamy Eyeliner (which is 0.04 oz.) is only $20. Up the size (or lower the price) and make these permanent, please!

The Glossover

product

Bobbi Brown Chocolate/Bronze Dual-Ended Eyeliner Review, Photos, Swatches

A+
Up the size (or lower the price) and make these permanent, please! Surprisingly long-wearing for such a creamy formula--definitely work checking out next time you're near a Bobbi Brown counter.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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