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Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

Dior DiorShow Extase Mascara

Dior DiorShow Extase Mascara ($28.00) is the latest variation on the famous Dior DiorShow Mascara. It seems like it’s exclusively available at Sephora for the time being, and Sephora describes the new mascara as:

DiorShow Extase provides built-in treatment benefits and high-impact lashes in a single stroke! The spherical-shaped Black Pearl Pigments create a 3D volume effect and the exclusive Metamorphosis Powders expand in size by up to 50% after application. Also, SR38 Patented Ceramid brings additional care, reconstructing damaged lashes and promoting stronger and fuller lashes. The Extase mascara features a “Tiered Brush” that is inspired by the “tiered” couture dresses created by the House of Dior. The brush is designed for performance and contains an Exclusive Duo of Fibers: The Black Elastomer Fibers brush out and define the lashes for panoramic fringe and the Gold Nylon Fibers hold and deposit formula, generously coating each lash for outstanding volume.

Whenever I review a mascara, I look to see what exactly the mascara is claiming to do, because I find that like some anti-aging products, mascara is a product type that is often more marketing than results.   Extase is designed to volumize and thicken lashes while defining them.

Extase delivers length best — it’s exceptionally good at providing you with instantly longer lashes, even with just one light coat of the mascara. That’s really the part that I noticed first. It adds some volume, but I wouldn’t label this a volumizing mascara. My lashes really looked longer, but not so feathery (as my lashes tend to look with a more volumizing mascara). As far as thickening goes, it thickens well for a such a multi-tasking mascara. I think what stands out about this mascara is the lengthening aspect of it; everything else is decent, but it’s hard to separate the volume, thickness, etc. from the dramatic increase in length. The color of the mascara is definitely a deep black; I’d say Chanel Exceptionnel and MAC Plushlash are slightly richer, but they’re all in the same ballpark. I don’t have any issues with the pigmentation–it’s black enough for me.

It does a good job of defining lashes, but to a point, because the mascara will clump up on you if you’re not careful. The brush often has excess mascara on it, so removing excess certainly helps, and you can get a good two or three coats of mascara with very minimal clumping. I always recommend using a mascara comb regardless of the mascara you’re using, just because it helps separate and define lashes. I wouldn’t say this is perfectly clump-free, but I’d say it’s a relatively clump-free mascara. If you like to get multiple coats on, just follow my aforementioned tips for a better application.

I’ve been wearing Extase for over a week now, so you can see it used in a variety of looks here in addition to the comparison photos included in the review.  The original DiorShow gave me good length, some thickening and volumizing, and looked good overall, but it flaked and smudged on me within an hour, so it was a no-go. I am so pleased to report that Extase doesn’t flake, budge, or smudge at all, even with twelve hours of wear. It also holds a curl like nobody’s business!

The brush has a sort of “swirled” look to it, and even though they mentioned black and gold fibers, it all looked black to me, so it was difficult to assess that particular aspect of it. The brush didn’t seem too large, though it felt a little long. It takes an application or two to find the right method for application, but it didn’t require much thought or effort to get good results.

OVERALL, I did enjoy the way Dior DiorShow Extase made my lashes look. It’s particularly lovely for lengthening lashes, even the stubbier ones I have on the outer lash line, and does a decent job everywhere else to make it one of the better multi-tasking mascaras I’ve tried. I’d say it’s very comparable to Chanel Exceptionnel but clumps less (but doesn’t thicken as well).  Extase is also priced higher than Dior’s other mascaras at $28, so it’s not the most affordable mascara you’ll come across.  Just for reference, DiorShow is $24 and DiorShow Iconic is $27.

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 like DiorShow and want more length, you may enjoy Extase.

Availability: Sephora

See more photos and comparisons… Continue reading →

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

If you were using Make Up For Ever #93 Eyeshadow?, what look would you create with it?

What shadows would you use? What would you use on cheeks? Anything added to the lips? Create a look using whatever you want, as long as you include today’s look book product!

Did you come up with a look you’d like to share featuring today’s product? You can link to your images, embed your images using HTML, or you can submit your images via e-mail to share them with readers to help give them inspiration on how to use the product!

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

2009 Editor’s Choice Awards — Part 1

I’m so happy (and relieved!) to be able to announce my picks for best brands and products of 2009. Because it is much easier to coordinate with just one person (myself!) than it is with thousands, I do have more categories than the Readers’ Choice Awards does. (Can you just imagine having to nominate products for 40+ categories? Exactly!) I also breakdown each award into best high-end winner and budget-friendly winner. For each award, the winning brand/product gets a brief description of why, and where appropriate, a link to any in-depth review.

Part 1 focuses on some of the biggest awards I give out each year — they’re the best of the best, creme de la creme — these products are some of the absolute best released in 2009.

Best Brand of the Year (High-end): Guerlain

Guerlain won me over this year with their beautiful limited edition collections along with their permanent range. I always find “Best Brand” to be an extremely difficult category to choose a winner for, but I felt like taking my experience with the brand throughout the year was the best way to go about figuring it out. Between the ultra luxe and lovely Rouge Gs to their silky soft blushes to the cult-favorite Meteorites, Guerlain just impressed me. Many of my latest and greatest holy grail products are by Guerlain (Gems Rouge G lipstick and Parure Gold Foundation, just to name two). You can read all of our Guerlain coverage here.

Best Brand of the Year (Budget): Maybelline

Maybelline showed me why they’re a worthwhile, budget-friendly brand this year. They’re incredibly reliable, and I just don’t run into too many products within the line that are just devastating. They make one of my favorite drugstore mascaras (Full ‘n Soft), as well as an excellent line of affordable lipstick and lipgloss (Color Sensational). You can read all of our Maybelline coverage here.

Find out who won Best New Product, Most Surprisingly Amazing Product, Most Disappointing Product, Best Seasonal Collections, and the Best and Worst of MAC! Continue reading →

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

Temptalia Asks You

What makeup is in your purse right now? Share!

Temptalia's Answer.

Guerlain Gems lipstick, MAC TLC (Clear), Chapstick, and that’s about all beauty-wise!

Monday, December 28th, 2009

Are you ready for Spring?

‘Cause there’s a whole lotta beauty coming your way… If you absolutely cannot wait to get your hands on a collection, do what I do and obsessively stalk Nordstrom’s “What’s New” section for the latest goods. (They just put up Guerlain’s new collections today! I’ve also spied Chanel and Clinique.) YSL is doing pre-orders for their Spring Look on their official website. I saw a few pieces of Dior start getting listed on Sephora… so you can imagine that in the next two or three weeks, we’ll see a lot of these launches come online. There are still a few more brands to add to the round-up as information is released, but for now…

Which ones are you most excited over?

Monday, December 28th, 2009

Dark Neutrals: Smoky Brown Eyes

This is probably my last look dedicated to MAC’s Warm & Cozy Collection. I’m pretty sure my next look is going to use some *color* as the past few have all been fairly neutral, given the theme of Warm & Cozy. I’ve never been a huge fan of using super dark bases overall, just because I’ve always found they have a tendency to eat color and not enhance it as much as lighter bases can do. Relaxed seemed to work best when layered with shimmery eyeshadows, rather than softer, more satiny shades.

You will need the following…

Directions: Start by applying Relaxed shadestick as your eyeshadow base all over the lid with the 249. Using the 239, apply Modelette eyeshadow on the inner third of the eyelid. Next, apply Mulled Cider eyeshadow on the middle third of the eyelid and lightly blend with the inner corner. Darken the outer third of the lid with Coppering eyeshadow with the 239, gently brushing it into the lower crease. Next, define the crease by applying Antiqued eyeshadow with the 226. To add more depth, tap and lightly blend in Embark eyeshadow in the crease with the 219. Lightly tap and brush Modelette eyeshadow directly above the crease to soften. To finish the eyeshadow look, sweep Chamomile eyeshadow as a highlighter on the brow bone. Bring everything together by applying Feline kohl power on the lower waterline and Goldmine eyeshadow on the lower lash line, and then sweeping lashes with DiorShow Extase mascara.

For cheeks, apply Imprevu blush to the apples of the cheeks and sweep upwards towards the temple with the 116. To highlight, apply Empreinte de Chanel lightly over the cheekbones with the 165.

For lips, apply Warm Me Up lipstick first, and then layer Feelin’ Dreamy lipglass for a lighter lip.

Check out more photos! Continue reading →