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Would you ever pay more than $100 for a skin cream? If you found a skin cream that worked well for you (obviously you wouldn’t spend $100 for something that didn’t work!), would you dole out the cash for it? Would you succumb to pricey creams if they worked for you? What would a $100+ cream need to do for you in order to buy it?
For me, I want visible signs of SOMETHING GOOD, whether that’s increased luminosity, skin health, reduced acne, etc. Since I’m not exactly aging very much, it’s hard for me to really tell when a cream hits home on the anti-aging, wrinkle-reduction/prevention front, but if I could see it? That’d be GOLDEN!
Move over Blue Satin, I’m ready to rock Dior’s Poison Blue ($19.00). Chanel’s Blue Satin catches the light of camera flash well, because it manages to pick up on a touch of shimmer that you cannot see whatsoever in real life. Poison Blue is this gorgeous dark blue-black shade that adds drama to nails, and it has a definite duo-nature to them. Indoors, the color is nearly black with blue undertones, while in sunlight, the blue tones stand out more.
There is no shimmer to this polish, it is more of a high glossy finish. I wore my Dior manicure for a week through moving apartments, and it held up amazingly. This stuff just would not chip, and it was really hard to even try and chip it myself (hey, I like to test polish durability). Despite packing boxes, unpacking them, assembling/disassembling, etc., I hardly had any tip wear either (say what?!). This is reason enough to opt for Dior Poison Blue over Blue Satin!
While Blue Satin has a thicker consistency than Poison Blue (thinner), Poison Blue is also glossier in its finish than Blue Satin. Personally, I preferred the consistency of Poison Blue, because it allowed me to do my dutiful two coats of polish without feeling like I might be wasting some (at $19 a pop, I don’t want to waste a drop), whereas Chanel’s was thicker to the point where one coat was almost enough, but I prefer two coats to maximize durability and lasting power. The picture above shows half a nail swatched with Chanel’s Blue Satin with the right half in Dior’s Poison Blue–just remember, the shimmer in Blue Satin is not visible with indoor light, and it better be a bright, sunny day if you want to see it at all!
Top row, left to right (eye shadows): Naked, Bare, Nude, and Buff; Bottom row, left to right (lip color): Bare, Beige, Brownie, and Cocoa
Bobbi Brown Nude Lip & Eye Palette ($60.00): As pretty as this pre-made palette looks in promo images, and even in person, the eyeshadows left me unsatisfied. I enjoy a nice neutral/nude look from time to time, so I thought that this palette would make a great addition to my travel bag or for occasions where minimal makeup is necessary. There are four eyeshadows, but three of the four look virtually the same on me (I’m medium toned), even with a white-beige base (MAC Soft Ochre paint pot).
Naked and Bare are so similar and seem to differ mostly in texture, where Naked seems a little more shimmery and Bare more matte. Nude is a warmer version of Naked/Bear with more peach/rose undertones. Buff would be my favorite, because it is darker and distinguishable from the others. I also didn’t find any of these to be a great highlight color, though I suppose Nude is the one you might assume to use. When looking at pre-made palettes, I do expect that there will be several looks that I can using the palette exclusively–not having to grab additional colors. From the promotional image, it did look like there was a little more color differentiation than you get in real life.
Aside from my issues with the colors/color pay off, the textures are typical BB: smooth and soft. I didn’t bother using the brush that comes with the palette because the bristles were just too coarse against the delicate shadows–it cause them to flake more than I liked. Full-size Bobbi Brown brushes are much better than the baby versions put into palettes (which is no different than other brands’ palettes, including MAC), so in a pinch, they’re great, but if you can, take your regular brushes with you.
The lip colors were much more exciting than the shadows, because they all had good pigmentation and the color variation was there. Bare lip color makes an excellent subdued rosey shade with soft undertones of plum, while Beige is a shimmery bronze-tan that adds a nice layer of iridescence to lips. Brownie is a great sheer soft tan color that should work with most skintones. Cocoa was my least favorite, just because it doesn’t suit me well; it is a nice shade of brown with red undertones with low-level shimmer. The lip brush is cute and compact, but I never have the patience for lip brushes. I opted to use a larger, flat firm brush (meant for eyes) to apply it, just because it was faster.
Overall, it dismays me to say that I don’t feel like this palette is worth it in the end, since the shadows did not offer me a variety of potential looks to create – three look about the same, and one is dark enough to add depth to the crease/outer lid. I’ve liked previous Bobbi Brown palettes much more, especially the Metallic trios. I also thought the lip palette for the Heart’s Truth was gorgeous, but this one just falls short for me!
If you were using Bobbi Brown’s Pink Quartz Shimmerbrick, 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 Pink Quartz! Feel free to share links to photos of your look(s) using it in the comments.
Do you ask yourself questions before you buy something? Do you ask, “Will I wear this often?” or “Do I have anything similar?” What do you ask yourself when you consider a product for purchase?
I think about how often I will use it, whether it will work with products I already have (undoubtedly, this is usually a yes), how many similar colors do I have, do I really need it, and do I really want to pay that much?
MAC Cosmetics: Guide For The Newly Addicted, Part 10
This is the final installment of the guide, and I asked readers to share their questions about what I didn’t cover and should, and here are the answers. Please feel free to suggest more topics in the comments!
Finish Descriptions — Tekoa
- Frost | Most frost finishes have high amounts of shimmer, and the majority I have encountered are fairly smooth when a brush goes to pick up color and the pay off is decent most of the time. MAC has a lot of shadows with this finish, including the coveted Parrot, as well as cult favorites Bronze, Goldmine, and Ricepaper.
- Lustre | More of a chunky, glittery finish; lots of shimmer and tends to flake off when the brush bristles touch it. This is not the most popular finish, because a lot of people experience too much chunkiness/flaking. However, several colors are nice (Aquadisiac, Greensmoke, Swimming, etc.).
- Matte | Flat, no shimmer color with decent color pay off in some cases — they tend to be chalky in some specific shadows. Some favorites are Chrome Yellow, Passionate, and Soft Brown.
- Matte2 | An updated version take on matte finishes with a creamier, less chalky texture. Goes on smooth with much better color pay off. Some favorites are Clarity, Newly Minted, and Prussian.
- Satin | Similar to a matte, but it has just a slight touch of sheen to it. Color pay off is good for most satins. I do find some shades look like they have shimmer (e.g. Fade, Parfait Amour, Juxt) rather than just sheen, but it is a very seamless shimmer, which is why it is considered a sheen.
- Veluxe | Again, a finish similar to mattes, but much creamier and smoother. They tend to make think of going on like butter – the pay off tends to be intense. Very few shadows have this finish–just four permanent colors–Brown Down, Kid, Samoa Silk, and Velvet Moss.
- Veluxe Pearl | Good amounts of shimmer, but very smooth when applied. This finish tends to give good color intensity and pay off, making them one of the favorite finishes. Generally no flaking or chunkiness whatsoever. Some of my personal favorites are Antiqued, Freshwater, Gorgeous Gold, Shimmermoss, Stars ‘N Rockets, and Woodwinked. This is my favorite finish as well.
- Velvet | A low-level shimmer finish that tends to be good in color and smooth when picked up. Some great shades are Bitter, Contrast, Juiced, and Texture.
- Amplified Creme | Very creamy, opaque, and has a high gloss finish. This is my personal favorite finish, and it includes popular colors such as BLankety, Dubbonet, Girl About Town, and Vegas Volt.
- Frost | High in shimmer with a glossy sheen, color pay off may vary, but tends to be on the opaque side. Popular favorites are Bombshell, Lame, New York Apple, and Sandy B; it is also a popular finish for many of MAC’s lipsticks.
- Glaze | Sheerer colors that go on with a nice glossy finish, lipstick feels smooth. This finish is claimed by few permanent lipstick colors, but some to mention are Gleam, Hue, and Pervette.
- Lustre | Less shimmer than a frost, but still some, and this formula tends to run sheerer than frosts, but with more pay off than galzes. Usually color is fairly buildable. Some favorites include Capricious, Hug Me, Plink!, and Sweetie. This is a fairly popular finish for lipsticks.
- Matte | Intense color pay off, drier textures (in some cases), no shimmer, no sheen/glossiness. Popular favorites are Honeylove, Lady Danger, Ruby Woo, and Russian Red.
- Satin | Kind of like a matte and a glaze–very subtle glossy finish. Color pay off seems to vary, but usually decent. Colors to think about include Brave, Cherish, Myth, and Snob.
False Lashes — Tekoa
- Specific lashes: 20 (half lashes meant to bulk up the outer half of lashes), 30 lash (kind of like individual lashes to fill in where you want), 38 (outer half of lashes)
- Natural length lashes: 1, 7 (really), 31, 32, 33
- Full lashes: 3, 4, 7, 36
- Dramatic lashes: 2, 6, 34, 35, 37
- Lower lashes: 39, 40
- Personal favorites: 7s, 36s (also known as “Sultress” lashes)
Keep reading to learn about Store Etiquette and Pigments! Continue reading →