Friday, September 30th, 2011

NARS Rated R Eyeshadow Duo<
NARS Rated R Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Rated R Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Rated R Eyeshadow Duo ($33.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as a “shimmering chartreuse” and “electric cobalt blue.” This is the first NARS product I ever looked at–back when I just started getting into makeup–though I did not purchase it at the time. I remember feeling like if you wanted to wear bright eye makeup, you had to have this.

The chartreuse is light-medium mix of yellow and green with a yellowy gold shimmer. It reminded me of MAC Double Feature 2 and Inglot #343 (this is matte). The color payoff is good, and the texture is very soft and finely milled.  The cobalt shade is described well by NARS; it’s blue, it’s purple–no, it’s a harmonious blend of the two with an icy blue shimmer. It is on the sheerer side and has a dusty feel, which is a bit of a bummer. It’s not as blue as Inglot #369 or MAC Winkle. On the other hand, MAC Cobalt is darker and purpler.

Per NARS’ website, their eyeshadows are supposed to be long-wearing and crease-resistant. In my experience, they still need to be worn over an eyeshadow base for all-day wear, but alone, they wear seven to eight hours with subtle creasing. They don’t fall apart immediately after application, but an eyeshadow base is recommended for best results.

The Glossover

palette

NARS Rated R Eyeshadow Duo Swatches, Photos, Review

B
Both shades are extremely vibrant and more in-your-face kind of shades, and while they can be used together, you could definitely pair them with other shades in your stash! I wish the cobalt shade was better, because it falls short of good.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Guerlain Shalimar Eau de Parfum
Guerlain Shalimar Eau de Parfum

Guerlain Shalimar Eau de Parfum

With the recent launch of Shalimar Parfum Initial, I felt it only proper to try out Shalimar Eau de Parfum ($123.00 for 3 oz.) first. It’s an iconic scent, not just for the brand, but in the world of fragrance. For a truly excellent read on the history of the scent, check out Perfume Shrine’s. It comes in a wide range of concentrations and product types; from the most concentrated (Extract, $131 to $322) to accessorizing products like perfumed body powder ($64).

The notes of Shalimar are bergamot, lemon, jasmine, rose, May rose, iris, incense, opopanax, tonka bean, and vanilla. It opens with an intense burst of the bergamot where the crisp citrus gives it a very cool feel, but it warms up quickly with a heady smokiness that’s marked by spice and leather. As it progresses, the final scent on me is a sweetened, spicy vanilla with the warmth and coziness of amber and sandalwood. It’s not the sweetened vanilla of a dessert, but richer, deeper, less sugary and cloyingly sweet. It is rather powdery on me, more notably in the earlier hours of the scent and decreases over time until it’s all but vanished by the third hour.

It’s not a shy scent, and it’s one that instantly says, “Pay attention, you don’t want to miss a note.”  There is a great deal of complexity from beginning to end.  Perfume is so very personal and often has to do with just what sensory memories are evoked when it is spritzed. I cannot relay any stories of mothers or grandmothers who wore and loved this scent; I actually have no memories for or against–no one I have known has worn it (and it is a scent you would remember!). I don’t like it on me until about two hours in; then it’s that right level of headiness that I like but with more of the tonka bean and vanilla pulling through with less emphasis on bergamot (which I don’t usually like).  The scent lasts on me for eight hours or so.

The inspiration: “The setting: Northern India, four centuries ago. His name was Shah Jahan. Hers was Mumtaz Mahal. Dazzled by her beauty, he idolized her; so madly in love was he that he wanted to make her life a perpetual garden of delights. And so sprang from the earth the Gardens of Shalimar. The story of their boundless love fired the imagination of Jacques Guerlain who, in 1925, created the world’s first oriental fragrance. A subtle mix of flowers and sensual amber-woody accents, Shalimar has become the eternal essence of love and radiant femininity. Wildly Guerlain, marvelously classic, it continues to fascinate young women just as it conquered every generation that came before.”

See more photos! Continue reading →

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Nubar Midnight Glory Nail Lacquer
Nubar Midnight Glory Nail Lacquer

Nubar Duochromes: Midnight Glory Nail Lacquer

Nubar Midnight Glory Nail Lacquer ($7.49 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a duochrome-finished shade. It shifts from blue to gold to pink, while the polish itself is very sheer. I swatched showing three coats, and there is still a lot of visible nail line. The base color is more of a robin’s egg blue while the shimmer is pink, copper, and almost gold. The base color isn’t as opaque or as intense as Nubar Blue Hydrangea but bluer than Chanel Riva. I don’t have anything like this, because of the duochrome finish.

Nubar’s polishes are formaldehyde-, toluene-, and phtalate-free. The rubberized cap is one of my favorites, because it’s very comfortable to hold and provides good grip for more precise application. I typically get a week of wear with minimal tip wear from Nubar’s polishes–they’re some of my favorites. The formula on Midnight Glory is on the thinner side, which fits given the sheerness overall.

The Glossover

P
product

Midnight Glory

B-
Nubar does not provide much of a description for this shade, so I don't know if it was designed to be particularly sheer (many of the other duochromes are opaque!). If you like layering shades, it's certainly worth checking out!

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Make Up For Ever #940 Star Powder
Make Up For Ever #940 Star Powder

Make Up For Ever #940 Star Powder

Make Up For Ever #940 Star Powder ($19.00 for 0.09 oz.) is a loose powder that shifts color at different angles and lighting situations. It moves from a cooler-toned beige-white to a coppery pink shimmer-sheen. It seems like it is similar to MAC’s Vanilla pigment but perhaps with a less pronounced sheen–more yellow in it than copper.

This is actually the shade that Nick Lujan patted onto the center of the lid in this look. The texture is very, very finely milled; it practically melts against the skin because of how silky smooth it is. #940 is particularly useful for layering over other eyeshadows to add more dimension to the shade, though it can be used alone just as easily.  It can be applied dry or damp, and the metallic sheen will be more pronounced if it applied damp.

The Glossover

P
product

#940 Star Powder

A-
Surprisingly, the silkiness of the loose powder doesn't give way to chalkiness or even lots of dusty flare-ups when you open the container. It settles just enough to be easy to use while still having a really soft feel.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011


Wet ‘n’ Wild Dancing in the Clouds Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio

Wet ‘n’ Wild Dancing in the Clouds Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio

Wet ‘n’ Wild Dancing in the Clouds Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio ($2.99 for 0.17 oz.) contains a gilded gold, violet, and softened copper.  It’s decent, but where it disappoints, it really disappoints.  At this price point, for two good colors, it’s still worth considering, of course.  Sometimes it makes you wonder what happened, though!  I can see this color combination working well together, but I don’t expect most to use it as each shade is labeled.

The gilded gold shade was beautiful to work with; it was soft, buttery, and so very pigmented. It reminded me of Urban Decay Maui Wowie without the fall out. Bare Escentuals Gold Medal also compares favorably. I was disappointed in the violet shade, beause the texture was dry and stiff, which yielded sheer, uneven color payoff. The violet shade is similar to MAC Violet and MAC Beautiful Iris. The final shade of the trio is a softened coppery brown with a frosted finish. It wasn’t as buttery as the gold shade, but it was still nice overlal and had good color payoff with a smooth application. It’s not as metallic as MAC Tan, and it’s not as intense as Urban Decay Baked. It seems rather similar to Wet ‘n’ Wild Comfort Zone, actually!

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Dancing in the Clouds Color Icon Eyeshadow Trio Swatches, Photos, Reviews

B+
The purple shade is a total dud, but the other two shades are almost good enough to make up for it. If you tend to spend more than less on cosmetics, then it's still worth checking out!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011


Chanel Blue Boy Le Vernis / Nail Lacquer

Chanel Les Jeans de Chanel Collection Swatches, Photos, Reviews

Chanel Les Jeans de Chanel Collection features three new and limited edition shades of lacquer (each retailing for $29.00 and containing 0.4 fl. oz., which is $4 more than the polishes are normally). Blue Boy (deep, rich blue denim), Blue Rebel (dark wash jeans), and Coco Blue (muted blue) make up the collection of blue-hued lacquers.

  • Blue Boy is a slightly faded, medium-dark blue with a cream finish. I needed three coats for opaque color, though it was more opaque than not at two.The closest dupe I could think of was Essie Lapis of Luxury, which is significantly lighter. Rescue Beauty Lounge Catherine H. has a similar faded quality but the multi-colored shimmer makes it look rather different.
  • Blue Rebel is a dark, navy blue with a cream finish. I used two coats for opaque color coverage, and I felt like the formula was better than it was on Blue Boy and Coco Blue. Rescue Beauty Lounge Dead Calm is deeper, richer. Though still more intense, China Glaze First Mate comes closer.
  • Coco Blue is a light-medium sky blue with barely-there white micro-shimmer. I used three coats for mostly opaque color, but I found the formula to be prone to streaks. The drying time was longer, too, so the polish pulled in places. Chanel Riva is much, much lighter and has less blue tones. Nubar Blue Hydrangea is more similar than Riva, but it’s more vibrant and more of a robin’s egg blue.

What struck me most about this collection had more to do with a slight case of sticker shock. I understand the luxury/designer brand model, and by no means is Chanel lacquer–dollar for dollar–any better than a polish at a fraction of the cost, but what’s with the $4 increase? I was expecting Chanel to add some marketing jargon about a rare ingredient, mixing technique, etc. that would justify the price increase, because Le Vernis jumped from $23 to $25 from the end 2010 to early 2011 already.

The formula on Blue Rebel was the best; really good flow, pigmentation, and no streakiness. Coco Blue was the worst as it was streaky and needed three coats, while Blue Boy was in the middle–no streakiness and decent flow but needed three coats for opaque color. I normally get a week of wear with minor tip wear out of Chanel’s polishes.

I’m always surprised when seemingly simple colors aren’t ones I can easily find dupes of. I’m sure many of you have already picked these polishes up, so I’d love to hear from you if you’ve found any dupes!

The Glossover

product

Chanel Les Jeans de Chanel Collection Swatches, Photos, Reviews

B
I couldn't think of perfect dupes for these shades, but at the same time, the imperfections in the formula leave me feeling underwhelmed about the three shades overall.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
Loading ... Loading ...
Dupes
Login or Register to be able to add this to your Vanity or Wishlist! Plus rate and review!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →