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  • HautelookUp to 59% off MAC Cosmetics, includes eyeshadows, palettes, blushes, eyeliners, lipsticks, and more, ends 8/20.
  • Muse BeautyBuy any 2 Viseart eyeshadow palettes for $128 (plus get three Esum eyeshadow brushes), ends 8/21.
  • Neiman MarcusGet up to a $300 gift card with your select purchase of $500+ (beauty/fragrance included) with code NMAUG, ends 8/22.

I don’t think I’ve had any friend or family member tell me this. I suspect that to some degree, sure – perhaps the most believable would be around the eyes because you may be pulling, tugging, or otherwise touching an area much more than you might if you never wore makeup. If you’re gentle, you know not to use a lot of pressure or pull and tug at your eyelid. Then again – maybe because you wear eyeshadow, you remember NOT to rub your eyes during the day!

— Christine

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MAC Speak Louder Cremesheen Lipstick

MAC Speak Louder Cremesheen Lipstick
MAC Speak Louder Cremesheen Lipstick

MAC Speak Louder Cremesheen Lipstick

MAC Speak Louder Cremesheen Lipstick ($14.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “clean poppy blue pink.” It’s a vibrant medium-dark pink-red with a subtle blue undertone and a soft, natural sheen. MAC Impassioned is much more vibrant, more coral. MAC Party Parrot is much more coral. MAC Moxie is darker, more intense. MAC Full Fuchsia is more vibrant, brighter.  Against my skin tone, it doesn’t read as cool-toned as it is in the tube.

It has mostly opaque color coverage, and it’s one of the creamier Cremesheens I’ve used. It glides on better than others within the finish, though it’s not as creamy as an Amplified finish. What’s interesting about this color is that it’s the more muted sister of a lot of the really vibrant, nearly-neon shades that have become immensely popular/sold out. I wouldn’t described it as muted generally, though, as it is fairly bright on the face.  Speak Louder wore for a solid five hours when I tested it.

I’m not a huge fan of the Cremesheen finish–it’s a bit drying (some shades more so than others).  I’d also love a slightly creamier consistency so that it would really glide easily and evenly across the lips.  Speak Louder wasn’t drying but neither was it moisturizing.  It is vanilla-scented but has no discernible taste (same scent as other MAC lipsticks and lip products).

MAC Lipstick Speak Louder
Speak Louder
Speak Louder
8
Product
10
Pigmentation
9
Texture
9
Longevity
4
Application
89%
Total

Beautiful Beginnings with Illamasqua

Beautiful Beginnings with Illamasqua

What was the first Illamasqua product you ever tried?  Did it pave way for a real romance or did it put you off the brand entirely?  What was the first Illamasqua product you purchased?  Did you love it? Hate it? Still own it?

my answer:  One of the coolest things about Illamasqua is that it’s one of the newer brands, so I get to say I was an early adopter!  The first products I tried were their nail varnishes, followed by their matte lipsticks and matte blushes.  I love the theme and aesthetic of Illamasqua, and they’ve always been a pleasure to work with.

Share your first time experiences with Illamasqua in the comments! 🙂

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NARS Ratin Jot Nail Lacquer

NARS Ratin Jot Nail Lacquer
NARS Ratin Jot Nail Lacquer

NARS Ratin Jot Nail Lacquer

NARS Ratin Jot Nail Lacquer ($18.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as an “orchid purple.” It’s a muted magenta pink with a cream finish. Illamasqua Obsess is more vibrant, less pink. Deborah Lippmann Makin’ Whoopee is more fuchsia. Zoya Areej is dustier, pinker, less vibrant. SpaRitual Color Trip is pinker.

The formula on Ratin Jot was lovely–richly pigmented (opaque in two coats, but almost in one), not too thick or too thin, and flowed beautifully across the nail without streaking, bubbling, or pooling. This color is very saturated and almost neon, but it’s shy of it.  There’s a slightly muted quality that keeps the pink hues from turning fuchsia, but there’s still enough richness that it pulls very magenta. I typically get a week of wear with minor tip wear but no chipping with NARS’ lacquer formula.

NARS Nail Polish Ratin Jot
Ratin Jot

Milani Pitch Black Powder Eyeshadow

Milani Pitch Black Powder Eyeshadow
Milani Pitch Black Powder Eyeshadow

Milani Pitch Black Powder Eyeshadow

Milani Pitch Black Powder Eyeshadow ($4.49 for 0.11 oz.) is an intense dark black with a matte finish–though there appears to be a very, very faint sheen, it doesn’t translate on the lid or from afar. It also seems to have very subtle blue undertones (rather than brown), but it’s hard to tell–it’s that close to neutral. Urban Decay Blackout is just slightly richer. Tarina Tarantino Lovely is a little softer. Guerlain Les Ombres de Nuit is similar. Inglot #391 is not quite as dark.

The formula is supposed to be “super pigmented, easily blendable, creaseproof, [and] silk-like.”  This is the second shade I’ve tried from the line-up, and I’m not disappointed.  I think the texture is a little drier than Shocking Pink, but it’s very intense and pigmented.  It’s soft, finely-milled, and doesn’t look chalky when applied.  It blends out fairly easily, though it could be just a little softer and denser.  The good news is that it’s not powdery, so you don’t end up with lots of excess product underneath your lid during application as you might with a more powdery formula.  This particular shade is closer in texture to MAC’s mattes, but it’s not quite as dry.  When I trialed Pitch Black on the bare lid, it wore for eight hours with some slight fading around the edges but no creasing.

It will be available exclusively at select CVS stores this May. I’ve linked to Milani’s website for the time being, as it’s a good starting point for tracking down where Milani is sold near you.  These are packaged in a clear-cover plastic compact and contain over double the amount of product as the average eyeshadow (0.11 oz. vs. 0.05 oz.).

Milani Eyeshadow Pitch Black
9
Product
10
Pigmentation
9
Texture
9
Longevity
4.5
Application
92%
Total

Chanel Empreinte Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Empreinte Rouge Coco Shine
Chanel Empreinte Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Empreinte Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Empreinte Rouge Coco Shine ($32.50 for 0.10 oz.) is a pale beige-rose with a subtle gray cast. There’s also a very subtle gold shimmer. Cle de Peau #129 is similar, though it applies pinker and warmer. MAC Win-Win has a totally different texture but appears a bit similar. MAC Lazy Day has a similar gray cast but is more opaque. Benefit Jing-a-ling is also pink with a gray cast but is also more opaque.  I caution you on comparison colors, though, because there’s enough translucency that and subtlety to this shade that I expect it to look a bit different person to person.

It has semi-sheer color coverage; at first glance, it will appear sheer or almost colorless, and that’s because it is nearly the exact color of my lips, and I don’t mean that in a my-lips-but-better kind of way–because I don’t like my natural lip color much (very corpse-like), so the result is just a more evened out corpse-like color. So it’s not my take on MLBB myself, but it could work for someone with more naturally pigmented lips looking for a way to mute them here and there. If you’re scratching your head thinking, “No way this is semi-sheer,” I encourage you to look very specifically at the freckle on my lip–you can see how prominent it is on my bare lips, but you’ll see how much of it is covered/appears faded with this product on.

There are a lot of readers who love this formula, and while I like it, I’m not in love for two reasons: it’s not really moisturizing in my experience, and it wears off too quickly. It’s not drying, but it doesn’t hydrate my lips during the short time it lasts on my lips. I’m lucky if these last two hours (and I typically get four hours of wear out of lipsticks).  Empreinte lasted a whopping hour and a half.  What I like most about the formula is the consistency; it’s very soft, smooth, and has a lot of slip, so it glides on lips easily and feels really comfortable to wear. A small downside to slippery formulas is that it’s easy to over-apply and they do have a tendency to disappear faster than less slippery formulas.

Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Hydrating Sheer Lipshine Empreinte
Empreinte
Empreinte
8
Product
9
Pigmentation
10
Texture
6
Longevity
5
Application
84%
Total

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