Friday, October 15th, 2010

China Glaze Holiday 2010
Nail Lacquer: Mommy Kissing Santa, Phat Santa, Ruby Deer

China Glaze Holiday 2010: Part 1

For the holidays, China Glaze has an impressive sixteen new shades for us. The first six I’m reviewing include three red-based shades as well as three cream finishes. I had no application issues with any of these six; they all applied quite easily for me–two coats needed for opaque color. The consistency of these shades was on the thinner side, but it wasn’t watery or sheer. Each China Glaze retails for $3 to 4, depending on where you purchase yours from. I know the brand is carried at various etailers as well as Sally’s (not sure if it’s in store yet, though).

  • Mommy Kissing Santa is a ruby red with matching shimmer. It almost has a metallic look but not quite. It’s a pretty red, but there’s a good chance you have something that seems similar in your stash. Zoya’s Karina is a little lighter and glitter rather than shimmer based; Two coats.
  • Phat Santa is a deepened red cream. It seems a touch lighter than Essie’s Limited Addiction. Two coats.
  • Ruby Deer is a brightened cherry red cream. It’s similar to Zoya’s Burke (less neutral red) and Essie’s Red Nouveau. Two coats.
  • Naughty and Nice is a blackened burgundy cream. The base color actually reminded me of China Glaze’s Mummy May I (which has glitter), also similar to Essie’s Velvet Voyeur (a bit redder in tone). Two coats.
  • Sugar Plums is a burgundy wine with flecks of darkened ruby micro-glitter. It does have a bumpy/gritty finish, so it needs a thicker top coat to look smooth. Two coats.
  • Little Drummer Boy is a rich navy blue with softened blue micro-shimmer. There’s something about this particular shade that has a lot of depth and character. I looked through my past nail swatches from the year, and I couldn’t find anything quite like it. Two coats.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I like Sugar Plums and Little Drummer Boy the most; the reds felt a little dupe-able, so whether they’re must-haves depends more on your personal stash.

AVAILABILITY: 8ty8beauty.com

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Thursday, October 14th, 2010

Maybelline Plum Paradise Lipstick

The Sultry Season: Maybelline Plum Paradise Lipstick

Maybelline Plum Paradise ColorSensational Lipcolor ($8.29 for 0.15 oz.) is a reddened raspberry with a soft frost sheen.  It’s nearly opaque, and the strength of the color helps this shade last a solid three hours, almost four, on my lips.  There’s just enough berry in this shade to make it feel like an autumn hue rather than a holiday one.

This is one of the clingier shades (as noted in my lipstick comparison post), because it has a frostier finish, which is drier than a creamy or satin finish shade.  It’s not drying, though, but if you have flaky or peeling lips, this one might not work out so well.   If you’re particularly sensitive to scent, ColorSensational does have a rather synthetic, syrupy sweet scent, but it seems to fade as many of mine just smell waxy.

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

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

Chanel Tweed Fuchsia Blush
Chanel Tweed Fuchsia Tissages de Chanel

Chanel Holiday 2010: Tweed Fuchsia

Chanel Tweed Fuchsia Tissages de Chanel ($45.00 for 0.19 oz.) is a cotton candy pink with slight blue undertones. It has golden shimmer patterned on the top of the blush, but underneath, it’s much subtler and interlaced with the blush itself. It’s almost like micro-glitter rather than regular shimmer, but a lot of it seems to disappear or get eaten up by the brush, so the effect isn’t like a disco ball. (And again, much of the glittery bits are overspray and will be gone after a use or two.)

Tweed Fuchsia, like several of the other Tweed varieties, does feel like it has a little more shimmer than the Joue Contrastes, which have a glowier kind of look when worn. The blue undertone of this pink isn’t too strong, though it gets stronger the heavier the color is used. When I wore it on my cheeks, it almost looked neutral! It also layered well, so you could build up the color for a more intense cheek or keep it soft for an everyday look.

It’s a pretty pink, but it’s a shade I’ve definitely seen before–if you have Pink Explosion from fall, you might find this quite easy to pass by.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: This is a flattering shade of pink on both cool and warm skin tones, because it doesn’t lean too blue.  It’s also buildable, which makes it more versatile as you can pair it with heavier, smokier or barely-there looks.  However, you may want to check your stash to see if you have something similar.

AVAILABILITY: Chanel

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Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

NYX Violet Ray Lipstick

The Sultry Season: NYX Violet Ray Lipstick

NYX Violet Ray Round Lipstick ($4.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a deep raspberry red with fuchsia sheen.  it’s semi-opaque and goes on a touch streaky, but it’s a great affordable option for a sultry lip this season.  It wears about three to four hours, but it’s not drying at all.  I like how there is some glossiness in the finish, which helps to make it look smoother.  This is a versatile shade that works for the vampier fall lip but also as more festive holiday lip color.

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

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

Tom Ford Moroccan Rouge Lipstick

The Sultry Season: Tom Ford Moroccan Rouge Lipstick

Tom Ford Moroccan Rouge Lip Color ($45.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a reddened plum with subtle fuchsia micro-shimmer.  It is nearly opaque, but you can see my lip freckle peeking through just slightly.  There’s a nice glossy shine while the lipstick itself is creamy and applies like a dream.  All of Tom Ford’s lipsticks are vanilla-scented but taste-free, and I get about five or six hours of wear with darker shades like Moroccan Rouge.

You can see previous reviews of Tom Ford’s lipsticks here.

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

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

Chanel Tentation Cuivree Eyeshadow Quad
Chanel Tentation Cuivree Eyeshadow Quad

Chanel Holiday 2010: Tentation Cuivree

Chanel Tentation Cuivree Eyeshadow Quad ($56.00 for 0.24 oz.) is new for holiday, and just like everything else in the collection, it is also limited edition. It’s a rather neutral quad with a smoky brown edge. I actually mean neutral in overall color scheme while the undertone is slightly warm but not much so.

The quad consists of a medium-dark cocoa brown with flecks of silver and bronze shimmer-glitter; softened champagne with a frost finish; high-shine light-medium pink with subtle yellow undertones; and a dark cocoa brown with flashes of molten bronze shimmer. Chanel’s eyeshadow quads can be used wet or dry (with no effect on the eyeshadows themselves), and the two lighter shades look about the same regardless, while both browns deepen. Funny enough, when used wet, the darkest brown seems to loses some of the copper flecks.

Overseas, the circular eyeshadow pans are the norm, while U.S. quads come in square pans typically. I’m not sure whether the change is just for holiday or going forward. I think I prefer the square pans; perhaps that pyramid shape lends it a bit of sophistication that the circular pans lack. It almost looks like a knockoff to me, but I imagine that’s also due to the fact that I’m not used to seeing it that way more than anything.

I don’t love this eyeshadow quad, and I don’t think it’s exactly the same in texture as other quads. It’s not quite as buttery or as smooth. I had some trouble with the medium brown swatching dry, though it sure came together when used wet. This quad is shimmer-heavy, with both of the brown shades having more of a micro-glitter effect than shimmer/sheen, so there is a touch of fall out, which I don’t usually associate with Chanel.

It’s nice but not knock-your-socks-off stunning. I like but don’t love, you know? The quality just isn’t quite there for me, and the abundance of shimmer and frost (and even a bit of glitter) came as a surprise. It’s worth taking a peek at, though!

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

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I think warmer beauties will find it very easy to use and a good go-to for smoky brown looks. It will still be nice on cooler skin, but it may not feel quite as complimentary (if you find warmer browns go red on you, I’d skip this).

AVAILABILITY: Chanel

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →