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  • Clinique25% off any purchase with code CL25, ends 6/28.
  • Laura Mercier20% off any purchase, ends 7/02.
  • MAC Cosmetics25% off to Select members with code MAC25, ends 6/27.
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MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre

MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre
MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre

MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre

MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre ($26.00 for 0.31 oz.) is described as a “mid-tone violet pink.” Like Azalea Blossom, this is also a repromote but still limited edition, and it will launch on December 26th with the Daphne Guinness collection. It’s a dark reddened berry that is intensely pigmented–a little will go a long way; I would recommend using a stippling brush or a very, very light hand if you prefer subtle cheek color. If you like your blush deeper, you’ll love how little product you need to accomplish that with this shade. Bobbi Brown Plum is pinker, brighter. The darker side of MAC Band of Roses is similar but more shimmery.

I felt like the texture of this one, while soft to the touch, was stiffer on the skin, because it wasn’t as effortless to blend out the edges and diffuse the color. The gradient fades from cotton candy pink to a dirty red-plum, so depending on the area you grab color from, you may get a pinker or redder color. I swirled and tried to get an even amount of each side for swatching purposes. I wore this shade (yes, one shade on each cheek–always on a mission to scare the UPS man!) and it wore better, more towards seven hours with some fading after eight hours.

MAC Vintage Grape Blush Ombre


Holiday Trends in France

By Christelle, France, Local Contributor

Christelle lives in Corsica, which is in the south of France, an island in the Mediterranean Sea, though she was born in Paris. She lived in Paris for eighteen years before settling in the south of France. Christelle studied public law for three years and grauated in European Affairs two years ago; her daytime job is in public administration.

She loves to travel and has visited most of the European countries (she loves visiting Budapest and Roma). In her free time, she loves to ballroom dance, go out with friends, and enjoy the beautiful weather of her locale.

Strasbourg, France – Christmas Market by LenDog64

Holiday Trends in France

Christmas is such a magical time. I love the festive atmosphere of the holiday season. What I also love about this time of the year is witnessing the creative imagination of the cosmetic industry. In France, almost every make up brand releases special collections for the holiday season. Let me present a few trends to get the perfect holiday look…

Black and Sparkles

This winter, black and sparkles will wrap your eyes in mystery. Nuit Céleste collection by Givenchy is a perfect example of this trend. This collection reminds me of a beautiful starry night… very poetic!

  • Ombre Noire (€47,00) is an amazing black eyeshadow! It has been designed to be used as an eyeshadow,  eyeliner, or mascara.  It’s slightly infused with shimmer, so it can create a dramatic look.  It also contains three miniature-sized brushes.  The eyeshadow can be used wet or dry, so you can build up the color to the desired intensity.
  • Vernis Please n°176 Noir Céleste (€16,50) is not just another black nail lacquer! It is opaque in just one coat, and it is easily applied due to the large flat brush. The color is gorgeous: black with silver glitter.
  • L’Or Céleste Starry Loose Powder (€58,00) comes in a retro spray bottle!  It’s such a beautiful object, so it is perfect for gift-giving. It contains a soft golden powder to be sprayed on your complexion as an highlighter or on your body for an immediate glow!
  • Love black eyeshadows? Check out the new Yves Saint Laurent Noir Terriblement Palette (€52,50) featuring four intense black eyeshadows, plus a white shade to play with light and shadows.
  • If you are on a budget, you can pick Bourjois Eye Pearls (€14,60), a palette of five silky, luminous eyeshadows.

Red and Gold

A touch of red on your lips and nails, a precious golden eye… and you are ready to party!

  • Givenchy Or Céleste n°20 Le Prisme Yeux Mono (€27,00) is a variation of gold–matte, shimmer, and glitter to play, create and experiment!
  • NARS Campo Dei Fiori Eyeliner (€25,00) is perfect if you do not dare to wear a full golden eye, because you can always add a precious touch of gold with this beautiful eyeliner. This liner is very soft and easily glides on.
  • Dior Les Ors collection has several stellar products, including the Couture Golds Palette ($59.00), five new lipsticks ($32.00), and four nails lacquers ($22.00), with my favorites being Merveille and Divin.
  • A cheaper alternative: Yves Rocher Luminelle Nail Polishes (€1,95) — choose between a deep red and a glittery gold polish or pick them both! You can also try their Luminelle Gloss, which is available in 3 shades (red, berry and gold) for just €3,95.

Let There Be Light

Who said winter is dull? These powders will add light to your face and help you get a glowy complexion.

  • Chanel Lumière Sculptée Powder (€55,50) has a beautiful pattern inspired by a baroque belt Coco Chanel used to wear. It will give a subtle shimmer and beige glow to your skin.
  • Lancôme Golden Hat Pressed Powder (€47,90) is a nice pink highlighter with a golden touch to brighten your face. Buying this powder is also a good deed, as the profits will go to Kate Winslet’s Golden Hat foundation, which supports audistic children.
  • Guerlain Parure de Nuit Pressed Powder (€50,90) has a gorgeous peacock pattern! Coral, beige, and even teal will give you a subtle sheer look. You can use it as an highlighter and as a blush. Check Christine’s review for more information.

Which trend inspires you most? I think I will go red and gold!

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MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre

MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre
MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre

MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre

MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre ($26.00 for 0.31 oz.) is described as a “light cool pink.” It’s a cool-toned, blue-based pink with a pearly sheen.  It was originally released with Spring Colour Forecast, but it will be making a reappearance in the Daphne Guinness collection that launches in-stores on December 26th.  As it was before, it is also limited edition.  MAC Overdyed is pinker, less blue. MAC Sakura is similar but can look pinker, depending on how you mix the shades. It has a soft feel against the skin and sits well on the skin without emphasizing pores, due to the more natural sheen in its finish. On my skin tone, it warms up a bit and looks less cotton candy pink and more plum, so it’s more wearable than I thought it might be.

The pigmentation can pack a punch, even though it appears almost soft and gentle in the pan. I applied it to cheeks using Bobbi Brown’s blush brush, and I felt like it was rather heavy. It doesn’t buff or blend out quite as well as I’d like, but it’s manageable. Because it has a gradient of color, you can go more lilac or more pink depending on your mood or look. The Blush Ombres are the size of MAC beauty powders or foundation powders, so they’re large and easy to get your brush into half of it. For me, when I wore this, it wore for six hours but looked a bit faded by eight hours, though it was still noticeably there.

MAC Azalea Blossom Blush Ombre


I love a good sale, and if something’s discounted, that’s just more money in my pocket for something else, but if a brand is often available at 30-50% off their regular price, then I definitely don’t bother paying full price. It’s like an upcoming sale; if you know it’s going on sale, you wait a week until it does to buy it! I think it cheapens the brand in the customer’s perspective; it’s almost like saying your products aren’t worth the real price you charge but half of that.

— Christine

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Tarina Tarantino Eyelicity Glitter Eyeliner

Tarina Tarantino Eyelicity Glitter Eyeliner
Tarina Tarantino Eyelicity Glitter Eyelines

Tarina Tarantino Eyelicity Glitter Eyeliner ($16.00 for 0.17 oz.) is supposed to deliver “smooth color payoff and excellent coverage” that is smudge-proof. It comes in three shades: Glitter Mist (micro iridescent pearl glitter), Magic Mirror (micro silver glitter), and Black Diamond (black liner with iridescent glitter).

  • Glitter Mist is a mix of iridescent pink, white, and silver glitter that’s more sheer than opaque. There’s lots of shimmer, but it doesn’t deliver a solid line of color. The glitter almost looks like flakies.
  • Magic Mirror is a gray and silver mix of glitter; it’s surprisingly not metallic–it’s a much darker gray/silver than your typical foil-like silver.
  • Black Diamond is a black liquid eyeliner with multi-colored glitter–I saw mostly green, blue, and silver.

The first two are more layering shades than ones to wear individually, though Magic Mirror could be worn alone, it doesn’t have quite the same oomph as Black Diamond does when worn alone. Black Diamond definitely has enough of a color base to be used alone, but it’s not as opaque as most black liquid eyeliners. I’ve been liking these more layered over my favorite eyeliners for added sparkle. You can also apply it over mascara, if you should so desire!

The applicator is thin, but the eyeliner can be a little thick, so I prefer to use a separate eyeliner brush (like the 208), especially since I applied it to the lower lash line.  Those with more experience with thin, liquid eyeliner brushes should find this suitable; it feels and looks much like the multitude of others do.  It’s not too long or floppy, and it’s very thin, so precision is possible.

It has a longer drying time (but still under a minute), which is more a minus than it is a plus. Once it dries, though, it didn’t budge. It will peel off if you pick at it (say you swatched it on your arm), but it’s not going anywhere with water (or tears!) or through regular day wear. I didn’t find glitter all over my cheeks or anything like that after wearing it for twelve hours.

Tarina Tarantino   Eyelicity Glitter Liner

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