Monday, May 10th, 2010

Guerlain #262 Kiss Kiss Baby

Guerlain Cherry Summer (#262) Kiss Kiss Baby Lip Balm ($31.00) is an ultra moisturizing, sheer baby pink.  Kiss Kiss Baby is a high-end version of lip balm, so don’t go into it expecting extraordinary color pay off.  Accordingly, Cherry Summer is no exception–it’s barely there color that delivers a hydrating punch to the lips.   It’s one of two limited edition shades from Guerlain’s Summer collection.  I can’t get over how soft and smooth it is and it really does keep lips moisturized for hours.  I also like that you don’t need a lot to get the moisturizing effect, which is often a problem with higher-end lip balms.  I do like their little potted Terracotta balms a bit  more, but the stick-delivery is way more convenient.  I think Guerlain fanatics will enjoy it, but if you’re not a high-end beauty fiend, this isn’t the product I’d start with!

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you’re a Guerlain fanatic and are on the hunt for something ultra moisturizing, you might find it in Kiss Kiss Baby.

Availability: Nordstrom

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Monday, May 10th, 2010

Tarte Clay Shadow/Liner

Tarte Clay Shadow/Liner ($22.00 for 0.08 oz.) is new for summer and available in five shades: Black (matte black), Bronze (deep bronze sheen), Brown (matte chocolate brown), Indigo (deep royal blue sheen), and Plum (eggplant purple sheen). Each shade also comes with a double-ended brush with a small eyeshadow brush on one end and a pointed end for lining.

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been testing the wear of four of the five shades, and they definitely hold up well as an eyeshadow or eyeshadow base. They’re a bit bold to wear alone, so I’ve found that I prefer layering eyeshadows on top of them instead. They have a creamy feel and apply with a very smooth finish.

  • Brown is a matte chocolate brown–that’s the exact description I came up with before I read the officialy one–and it’s very, very opaque.
  • Indigo is a midnight blue with a soft, frosted sheen. I found that it’s pigmented without being intense. It’s a noticeable color, but it isn’t too vibrant that it’s a bright.
  • Plum is a red-based medium-dark purple with multi-colored shimmer and a frost sheen. I don’t think I’d call this Plum, though — it’s a bit brighter than that.
  • Bronze is a coppered bronze with a frosted sheen .It has a definite warmth to it.

The shades themselves don’t reinvent the color wheel by any means, but the product itself is solid. I didn’t experience any creasing or fading when I used them as an eyeshadow base. Similar, when I wore them as eyeliner, they stayed put–no budging, migration, or fading. I found the Brown shade (the only one I tried, since the other three have shimmer) lasted a few hours on my waterline, as well. They’re definitely pool and summer-friendly products, though I definitely like them more as an eyeliner. I find such dark bases eat color rather than enhance it like lighter bases, so I just personally get more use out of these kinds of products by using them as an eyeliner.

I had a little issue with the packaging, as I often had to attempt to screw the cap on several times to catch the threading, and the cap itself felt a bit flimsy. It doesn’t make or break the product for me, but it was annoying, since you want to make sure to tightly close all of your cream/gel products to prevent them from drying out. The included brush is just so-so–I still reached for my trusty MAC brushes–just a little unrefined and not the softest brush I’ve used. Better than a sponge-tip applicator, though!

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:  For long-lasting, creamy eyeliner or eyeshadow, Tarte’s new Clay Shadow/Liners definitely get the job done.

Availability: Sephora

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Monday, May 10th, 2010

Illamasqua Fierce Intense Lipgloss
Illamasqua Fierce Intense Lipgloss

The Summer Season: Illamasqua Fierce Intense Lipgloss

Illamasqua Intense Lipgloss Fierce ($19.00 for 0.20 oz.) is a medium violet purple. Yes, it’s really, truly a purple lipgloss. This isn’t a hint of violet, a smidgen of purple–it is undeniably purple. I don’t, personally, think I’d wear this shade alone, but I’d work it with a red or burgundy lipstick mixed with it for something I could wear. Though I experienced no bleeding and the gloss goes on beautifully–smooth, evenly, and mostly opaque–the natural color of the edges of my lips are visible–I recommend using a lip brush to apply and a magenta or purple lip liner underneath. I think this will yield the most impacting pout if you’re going full-force purple.

Is this the right purple lipstick for you? Would you wear it?

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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.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Sunday, May 9th, 2010

YSL #13 Rouge Volupte Lipstick
YSL Peach Passion Rouge Volupte Lipstick

The Summer Season: YSL Peach Passion Rouge Volupte Lipstick

YSL Peach Passion (#13) Rouge Volupte Lipstick ($34.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a brightened peachy-coral with an ultra creamy feel. Rouge Voluptes are ridiculously creamy–quite possibly the creamiest lipstick I’ve ever tried–so they do have a lot of slip. It’s easy to use more than you need, but the lipstick itself lasts a solid three to four hours, despite the slip-factor. Peach Passion is a rich, opaque shade that delivers full-color coverage with a soft, mango-ish scent.

Is this the right coral lipstick 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.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Saturday, May 8th, 2010

NARS Schiap Lipstick
NARS Schiap Lipstick

The Summer Season: NARS Schiap Lipstick

NARS Schiap Lipstick ($24.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a bright, fuchsia-pink with a semi-matte finish. It has no shimmer, but it does have a slightly glossy sheen, so it doesn’t a completely matte finish. Schiap applies beautifully–soft, smooth, and the color looks even with little effort. I like that it’s not totally matte, because I think if it was, this shade might be drying. The slight creaminess and glisten to it give it enough moisture to keep from drying your lips out (but if you have really dry lips, I recommend prepping well before wearing this). NARS lipsticks are scent-free and taste-free (though you might detect a wax-y scent). I got about four hours of wear before it started fading, but it held on pretty well.

Is this the right pink lipstick 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.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Friday, May 7th, 2010

MAC To the Beach Collection

MAC to the Beach Sneak Peek!  I mean… Faux Peek!

I might not be able to give you a true-and-blue sneak peek, but here’s a faux peek instead. MAC’s To the Beach Collection includes several repromoted/permanent shades, and since I do own a few of those, here are photos and swatches of those products. Just to be clear, none of the products shown are in the limited edition packaging of the actual collection. I don’t own Golden Bronzer or Rosemary & Thyme Eyeliner, but both of these are also permanent shades.

Please know that if I haven’t posted swatches or photos, it’s because I don’t have the products–sometimes I get press samples early, but many times I purchase the products myself when they’re available for sale.   Trust me, I wouldn’t hold back from you! :)

  • Hipness Blush is a soft pink with a hint of coral with a smooth finish–very satiny, not shimmery. It was originally released with the Fafi and MAC collaboration.
  • Refined Golden Bronzer is a dirty brown with a very fine golden shimmer strewn through the powder that’s barely noticeable when used. I don’t find it turns orange-y at all, so I like it for a bronzing option. It’s dark enough to work on light to medium dark complexions, but it’s not so dark that it will look drastic on lighter skin tones. This is a permanent product, but I have it because it was released with Style Warriors. (Which also released Solar Riche as the second bronzer in that collection, whereas To the Beach features Golden, also a permanent bronzing shade.)
  • Shimmermoss Eyeshadow is a darkened aqua-teal with a frosty sheen. It’s part of MAC’s permanent line, and it’s definitely one of my favorite eyeshadows, too. It’s a shade I think everyone who loves colors and MAC should own. If you depot your products or don’t care about the special packaging, you can snag it in pan form and save a few bucks.
  • Humid Eyeshadow is a darkened green with a yellow undertone and slight golden sheen. Like Shimmermoss, it’s a permanent shade, but it’s a classic shade, too. It’s soft, smooth, and has great color pay off. Humid is a must for green fiend like myself!
  • Thrills Lipstick is a stunning combination of red-rose and amber-bronze shimmer/frost. It’s a shade you just don’t see often. The only shade that comes close is nearly three times the price–La Prairie’s Rose Bronze (but that’s much pinker, rosier; same effect, but the base color is stronger). This originally launched with Rushmetal, way back in 2007. I don’t even have to see anything else from To the Beach to tell you this is a must-have from it, though. It’s AMAZING!
  • Pink Rebel Lustre Drops is a slightly pink-toned peach highlighter. Lustre Drops are, essentially, liquid highlighters. You can use them on your cheeks, brows, decolletage… whatever. You can mix it in with your foundation or moisturizer for an all-over sheen. Naturally, this one suits those with pinker undertones, but it can easily work with warmer complexions as well.  Lustre Drops debuted in Style Warriors last year.
  • Sun Rush Lustre Drops is a golden peach highlighter. This one is definitely more suitable for those with warmer undertones, but if used sheerly (which is really the best way to use these anyway), it’s not so warm that it would turn orange on cooler undertones.

Availability: May 27th, 2010 in-store, May 24th or 25th for online; Unveiling parties on May 18th at select locations

Let’s get a list going of unveilings happening around the country on May 18th…  Comment if you know of any stores that are :)

  • MAC @ El Segundo, El Segundo, CA
  • MAC @ Hillsdale Mall, San Mateo, CA
  • MAC @ Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA
  • MAC @ Bridgeport Village, Portland, OR
  • MAC @ Uptown, Albuquerque, NM
  • MAC @ The Parks, Arlington, TX
  • MAC @ The Domain, Austin, TX
  • MAC @ Nordstrom Stone Briar Mall, Dallas, TX (5/22)
  • MAC @ Hennepin, Minneapolis, MN
  • MAC @ King of Prussia, PA
  • MAC @ Natick, Natick, MA
  • MAC @ Smithaven Mall, Lake Grove, NY
  • MAC @ Montague, Brooklyn, NY
  • MAC @ 125th Street, Harlem, NY
  • MAC @ Columbus, NYC, NY
  • MAC @ Gardens, Palm Beach Gardens, FL
  • MAC @ Kingsway, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • MAC @ Robson, Vancouver, Canada
  • MAC @ Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada

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