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NARS Trouville Nail Lacquer

NARS Trouville Nail Lacquer
NARS Trouville Nail Lacquer

NARS Trouville Nail Lacquer

NARS Trouville Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “seashell pink.” It’s a soft pink with a hint of coral and yellow undertones. It’s nearly opaque in two coats–under diffused flash, there’s faint visible nail line, but in studio lighting, I couldn’t tell it wasn’t 100% opaque. OCC Femme is a yellow-toned pink, but it’s a bit pinker and has shimmer. Chanel Mistral is also a yellow-toned pink but darker, pinker, and has shimmer. Chanel Morning is the closest in tone, but it’s darker.

The consistency of Trouville was just slightly thicker than ideal, but it applied fairly evenly and easily. Each coat takes a little longer to dry, and if you go too quickly, you risk pulling up the color of the first coat a bit.  I think this is a really lovely choice for spring and summer; it’s warm, breezy, and feminine without being too pastel or too bright.  I could see this working well on toes, too!  I’ve had excellent luck with NARS’ formula–it wears like iron and lasts a full seven days without chipping.

NARS Nail Polish Trouville
Trouville
Trouville
9.5
Product
9.5
Pigmentation
9.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
96%
Total

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NARS Calabria Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

NARS Calabria Soft Touch Shadow Pencil
NARS Calabria Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

NARS Calabria Soft Touch Shadow Pencil

NARS Calabria Soft Touch Shadow Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “shimmering plum.” It’s a dark burgundy plum with softer plum shimmer. Bare Escentuals Passion is slightly redder, less frosted. Le Metier de Beaute Fig is very similar, perhaps a little warmer. Guerlain Boulevard de Montparnasse is plummier. Tarina Tarantino Fantastical is purpler.

I have to emphasize how NARS markets the formula: “easy, portable, long-wearing application,” “functionality to shade the lid, line, or highlight the eye,” “an ideal base for layering with a powder shadow for increased color intensity,” “smooth, creamy, long-wearing formula.” Then, from the press release for this collection and specific shade, “This versatile, shimmering plum Soft Touch Shadow Pencil is the ideal complement for color on lids. Named for the region south of Naples, at the “toe” of the Italian Peninsula—it can be worn solo, as a base for powder shadows, or as a liner.”

The reason why this pencil can’t make it past five minutes (let alone an hour) without creasing is that it never dries down. It remains glossy and creamy for as long as I wear it–after three hours, I removed it and tried using it as a base with powder eyeshadows over it, but it creased horribly after an hour. The areas where the product has creased and accumulated are very slick, while the color on the lid will transfer onto my finger even with the slightest tough. There’s always a fine line between too quick and too slow when it comes to a cream eyeshadow/base product, but this one takes “too slow” to new lengths. I used it as an eyeliner and set it with eyeshadow, but it was entirely smudged after two hours and I had to remove it. The consistency is very, very creamy, which means it doesn’t tug or pull on the lid or lash line when it’s used, but it has a tendency to apply unevenly as it slides around the lid.

I am often asked why do I keep reviewing this formula only to give it a bad rating:  would (or should) I stop reviewing new shades of a good product? I don’t think so.  My policy is to review as many products as I can, whether or not they are good, bad, or just so-so.  Aside from the idea that all shades are individual and may perform better/worse than other shades in the same formula, there’s still value in reviewing a product, even if it’s consistently good or bad.  There’s opportunity to confirm that it is or isn’t consistent, how it may differ, the color, better alternatives on the market, and the like.  I wouldn’t seek this product out, but if NARS keeps making them and sending them to Temptalia for review, I’ll keep letting you know how they perform.

If you’ve been able to work these, I’d love to hear your thoughts! A review is always bolstered by reader comments – shared experience is what creates a fuller picture of how a product does and doesn’t perform.

NARS Soft Touch Shadow Pencil Calabria
Calabria

NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo
NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo

NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo ($34.00 for 0.14 oz.) is described as an “iridescent orchid” and “regal blue.” The left shade is a pale pink lilac with a lavender iridescence. The color payoff is sheer and translucent. MAC Light Violet is a bit similar, though not as pink. Inglot #346 is also more lavender, less pink, and has a matte finish. Wet ‘n’ Wild We’re Blasting Off is similar, though perhaps a little pinker, and has more of a satin-like finish. The right shade is a darkened navy blue with a violet shimmer and sheen, which becomes more pronounced when applied (it looked less blue, more purple). The pigmentation on this is decent, but there is some sheerness in the swatch as well as when applied. Tom Ford Cobalt Rush is very, very similar–less iridescent. MAC Starless Night is much darker, deeper. MAC Imaginary is purpler.

This eyeshadow duo creased after six hours over an eyeshadow primer (NARS Smudgeproof, actually), and on top of the creasing, there was significant fading of both shades from this duo (the blue was on the upper half of the lid and in the crease while the lilac shade was blended above the crease). I have normal-to-dry lids, and NARS Smudgeproof is my go-to primer normally, and while NARS eyeshadows do, typically, have some minor creasing and/or fading when worn without a base after eight hours, the wear here was abnormal. The creasing became more apparent after eight hours, but the fading was surprisingly noticeable after six and steadily worsened as the day wore on. There was some minor fall out from the shimmer in the shades from this duo as well that occurred while it was worn (but I didn’t see any during application). The wear was just as bad without a primer–the creasing/fading just became noticeable at the four hour mark– I thought maybe the glaze-like finish would adhere better to bare lids but no dice.

The texture of this particular eyeshadow duo is unlike anything I can remember seeing from NARS. It has a very glaze-like finish, that’s almost a little wet, but still a powder. If you’re familiar with Stila’s Sparkle eyeshadows, Tom Ford’s Sparkle eyeshadows, or Urban Decay’s Stardust eyeshadows, you may have a better grasp of that kind of texture–these aren’t quite as “wet.” The closest texture would be to Tom Ford’s sparkle-finish eyeshadows. The bluer shade looks really lovely when applied–wet and shimmering–but it actually seemed to disappear as I was applying it. I went back three times to darken the color before leaving it alone. The lilac shade was pretty soft and didn’t want to build up in color at all; the iridescence in it is a lot less noticeable compared to the blue (it just looked like a pink-lilac).

I was exceptionally disappointed in the results of Marie-Galante.  As far as wear went, it killed me with three major no-nos:  creasing, fading, and fall out.  It had issues with color payoff, too, which was really just icing on an inedible cake–like a cake that looks delicious but turns out to be made out of plastic.

NARS Marie-Galante Eyeshadow Duo

D
6
Product
7
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
4.5
Longevity
3.5
Application
66%
Total

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NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil
NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil

NARS Buenos Aires Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil ($24.00 for 0.09 oz.) is described as a “nude beige pink.” It’s a light peach beige with a subtle shine. The color coverage is mostly opaque. It’s not quite as glossy or as shiny as other hues within the Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil range, though. MAC Naturally Eccentric is lighter. MAC Peachstock is darker, more orange. Guerlain Guerlinade is slightly darker.  What I like about the color is that it’s more universally wearable–it’s not so pale and light that it becomes the kind of nude that can easily wash out complexions.  There’s enough warmth, color, and opaqueness to give lips a lighter look without washing them out.

When I wore Buenos Aires, it lasted for just over three and a half hours. There was a very slight tackiness after an hour or so–very subtle but still there. The texture is fairly lightweight and thin. While the formula is supposed to be moisturizing, I found it neutral; neither drying nor moisturizing. The tip of the pencil is soft and creamy, so it applies fairly easily and provides even coverage.  The packaging is a bit of a bummer, because the softness of the pencil means a lot of it gets stuck in the sharpener, so there is a fair amount of loss every time you sharpen it. You can freeze the pencil to help minimize it, but it’s still a problem.

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil Buenos Aires

NARS Vendanges Lipstick

NARS Vendanges Lipstick
NARS Vendanges Lipstick

NARS Vendanges Lipstick

NARS Vendanges Lipstick ($24.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “sheer grape.” It’s a semi-opaque plummy brown with a subtly glossy shine–it is a little more pigmented than I would expect for a shade from the sheer range. MAC Sheer Plum is much browner. MAC One of a Kind is quite similar. Estee Lauder Plum Fizz is redder. Guerlain Galante is lighter and less plum. Benefit I Think I Love You is shimmery. MAC So Very Good is darker. MAC Offshoot is plummier. Chanel Bel Ami is similar.

Vendanges is part of the Sheer Lipstick range, which is a formula that is supposed to be long-wearing with translucent color and “sophisticated shine.”  The lipstick is scent- and taste-free (and no waxy scent either–it seems NARS has fixed any issues they had with that particular scent, because I haven’t come across one in a very long time).   The consistency has just enough slip to yield that pretty shine in the finish as well as enables it to glide across the lips and deposit color evenly without being so slippery that it slides around.

This kind of sheer is lovely–there is a translucency that is apparent but there is still a healthy amount of color deposited.  It’s a deeper shade that’s not too vampy, so it’s easy to wear and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance.  When I tested the wear of this shade yesterday, it wore well for four hours.  My lips felt hydrated after wear, too, so the formula is on the moisturizing side.

NARS Sheer Lipstick Vendanges
Vendanges

Bobbi Brown Canary High Shimmer Lipgloss

Bobbi Brown Canary High Shimmer Lipgloss
Bobbi Brown Canary High Shimmer Lipgloss

Bobbi Brown Canary High Shimmer Lipgloss ($23.00 for 0.24 fl. oz.) is described as a “pure gold with gold pearl.” I’d like to call it sparkling lipgloss gone absolutely, positively insane. This is quite possibly one of the most shimmering, glittering, glimmering, dazzling, so on and so forth glosses I’ve ever used. The base color is really a pale gold that yields little color, but it’s full of yellow gold, molten gold, and copper shimmer, so it brings the coverage up to semi-sheer to semi-opaque. The overall effect is very shimmery, metallic, and it gives lips a browner look. Though it appears “sheer,” there is a marked difference between my bare lips and this on.

MAC Straight to the Head is very brown, there’s no real gold in it. Make Up for Ever M6 is bronze and the shimmer is finer. NARS LusteR is such a tame, tame version–it looks so flat in comparison. MAC Gold Dust is a bit better, but it still doesn’t catch the light as well.  This is a shade that looks fine on its own, but it will be the perfect way to add glossiness and warmth to your favorite lipstick (try it over a red).

I’m a big fan of Bobbi Brown’s High Shimmer Lipgloss formula–it has an amazing high gloss shine that’s ridiculously glossy, shimmery, and all-around dazzling. If you’re a fan of Chanel Glossimers or MAC Dazzleglasses, you really should check out this formula, because (and in my opinion only, of course) these are even better. The formula is lightweight, comfortable to wear, glide on easily but never slip around, and wear for four to five hours–and the best part? The shimmer never feels gritty and doesn’t travel. When I wore Canary earlier this week for a wear test, it wore for four hours. These are mint-scented, taste-free, and non-sticky. It’s moisturizing, though it won’t replace your lip balm.

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss Canary
Canary

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