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Guerlain Bal de Nuit Eyeshadow Quad ($58.00) is the latest limited edition palette to be launched with the Imperiale Holiday Collection this October.
This is a stunning, incredibly elegant combination of classic shades that are perfect for year-round, but the shimmer and sparkle make it particularly fitting for the holiday season. This is not necessarily the most original eyeshadow quad of all time–it’s, at the very least, four shades of neutral-toned eyeshadows.
It includes four shades: a soft, sparkling gold-tinged white; a peachy-pink champagne with a frosty finish; a neutral-cool dark taupe brown with brighter bronze shimmer; and a warm-toned chocolate bronze with gold shimmer. All four shades have good color pigmentation, and as is standard with Guerlain eyeshadows, they feel silky smooth and apply like butter. They’re very blendable, and all four shadows work extremely well together. (Sometimes you’ll get a beautiful quad, but it’s not so easy to work with on its own.)
For me, this is just an easy, no-brainer eyeshadow quad that looks good, works well, and great for travel. I can just use the lightest two shades for a quick swipe of lid color, or I can use the two darker colors to add depth to the crease or go for more of a smoky eye. The quality is exactly what I’ve come to expect from Guerlain, so overall, I’m pleased.
L’Oreal HIP Matte Eyeshadow Duos ($9.99) are a more budget-friendly way of obtaining brighter, more pigmented eyeshadows. Each contains two shades of matte eyeshadows with a total weight of 0.08 oz. L’Oreal currently has five different matte eyeshadow duos available: Animated, Dashing, Perky, Poppy, and Striking.
I don’t love the matte eyeshadow duos. They’re okay–about average–but they’re not stellar. Since they’re matte, I do expect some chalkiness when I swatch, which is always minimized when you’re actually applying them with a brush. Nonetheless, the whitish side of Animated definitely looked and felt chalky and almost garish. I did love the shade of periwinkle blue in Animated, though–not a shade you see often, period. Perky has a lovely shade of green that doesn’t feel chalky or powdery, but the darker grayish-black shade has a lot of drag and just doesn’t have a great texture. So in the end, each duo only has one good shade–the other half is just so-so.
For comparison, a MAC eyeshadow contains 0.05 oz. of product and retails for $14.50 each. You get 0.03 oz. more and pay $9.99 a pop. A lot of mass retailer brands, like L’Oreal HIP, do go on sale on a frequent basis, so when they’re on sale, I’d be more willing to purchase these. At full price, I feel like it’s more than I want to pay for L’Oreal. I do consider the HIP line to be one of the better pigmented eyeshadow lines available at mass. I just wish you could swatch before you bought!
Bottom line: I wouldn’t pay full price ($9.99) for either of these duos, and I’d only really recommend Animated for the periwinkle blue, just because I don’t see that color in a lot of other lines. I love that L’Oreal is bringing matte color to the forefront, and I think the price point is affordable for many, particularly if they’re on sale.
Bobbi Brown Holiday 2009 Collection
Featuring palettes, kits, and sets…
Chrome Eyeshadow ($22.00) (Limited Edition)
Nothing says holiday glamour like eyes dressed up in new Chrome Eye Shadow. Developed with highly reflective pearls, this opulent formula looks like liquid metal on lids and reflects light beautifully. Featured in our signature eye shadow compact, customized for the season with a luxe chrome finish.
Goldstone Long-Wear Eye Palette ($40.00)
- Goldstone Metallic Long-Wear Cream Shadow
- Mineral Dust Long-Wear Cream Shadow
- Caviar Ink Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner
Earth Metal Lip & Eye Palette ($60.00)
- Autumn Shimmer Wash Eye Shadow
- Earth Metal Metallic Eye Shadow
- Zinc Metallic Eye Shadow
- Black Spruce Metallic Eye Shadow
- Sunset Gold Metallic Eye Shadow
- Antique Gold Metallic Eye Shadow
- Paisley Rose Creamy Lip Color
- Rose Garden Creamy Lip Color
- Rose Bud Creamy Lip Color
- Barefoot Shimmer Creamy Lip Color
Velvet Plum Eye Palette ($40.00)
- Bone Eye Shadow
- Naked Eye Shadow
- Velvet Plum Eye Shadow
- Espresso Eye Shadow
Glitter Balm Lip Palette ($40.00)
- Crystal Rose
- Crystal Diamond
- Pink Crystal
- Crystal Gold
Lip Gloss Trio ($40.00)
- Marina Pink Sheer Lip Gloss
- Pink Blossom Lip Gloss
- Cocoa Sugar Shimmer Lip Gloss
Tube Tint Trio ($28.00)
- Twilight Shimmer
- Blossom Tint
- Cherry Tint
Black Plum Deluxe Beauty Trunk ($500.00)
Sure to be a favorite among all Bobbi Brown devotees. This ultra luxurious Beauty Trunk is a refined and luxurious way to house and display your makeup. Interior features a mirror and several levels to organize beauty essentials, tools and skincare. Neiman Marcus exclusive.
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Chanel Mandarin Rouge Allure Laque ($32.00) is the last shade in our seven days of Chanel Rouge Allure Laque feature.
Mandarin is a deep, reddish coral. It’s very, very deep — it’s not exactly the summer coral that comes to mind when I’m thinking about coral lip color. It’s an orange-red base with lighter, coppery orange shimmer. It’s incredibly opaque and goes on full coverage in one layer. It has the same glossy sheen as the other shades, and it has the amazing staying power of intense shades like Dragon. It lasts through hours of talking, eating, and drinking, with only the glossy sheen fading, but the color staying true. Even though these are long-wearing, they don’t dry out lips, but actually keep them fairly hydrated. Mandarin is a deeper, more intense and redder version of Dynastie.
Since I don’t want to just re-write what I say about the formula (since it is the same–if there are any variations, you can be sure I’ll call them out), here’s a quick bullet-point summary.
Estee Lauder Ultimate Red Collection for Holiday 2009
Now available is Estee Lauder’s seasonal colour collection!
Opulent Shimmer Lip Gloss ($18.00)
Opulent Shimmer Powder ($32.00)
Radiant shimmer powder illuminates skin with a hint of golden opulence. Sweep it across cheekbones, décolletage—anywhere you want a holiday glow.
Gel Eyeliner ($19.50)
Ultimate Red Turbolash ($32.00)
Ultimate Red Signature Eyeshadow Quad ($35.00)
- Gold Opulence
- Lavish Plum
Holiday Eyeshadow Palette ($32.50)
Catch her eye with six sensational shades for holidays and all year long. A sophisticated palette in a sleek crocodile-embossed case complete with mirror and dual-ended applicator. The colors complement each other for great looks in endless possibilities: Pure Color Eyeshadow in Sugar Cube, Mocha Cup, Cinnamon and Mink; Estée Lauder Signature Silky Eyeshadow Duo in Roseberry Duo.
Signature Lipstick ($19.50)
- Cranberry Ltd
- Simply Red
Pure Colour Nail Lacquer ($18.00)
Holiday Mascara Set ($25.00)
Give her long, long-wear lashes and a flawless finish—an eye look to love. A perfect stocking stuffer, this gift collection includes four great formulas for amazing eyes, all in a golden, crocodile-embossed pouch: Double Wear Zero-Smudge Lengthening Mascara in Black, Dual-Ended Lash Primer Plus and Double Wear Stay-in-Place Concealer SPF 10, and Artist’s Eye Pencil in SoftSmudge Black.
Holiday Lipstick Colleciton ($37.50)
Lavish her lips with five full-size lipsticks. This gift collection brings together favorite shades from some of Estée Lauder’s best-selling formulas, tucked in a red satin keepsake box: Pure Color Lipstick in Sugar Honey, Rubellite, Hot Kiss and Autumn; Estée Lauder Signature Lipstick in Soft Amethyst.
Holiday Lip Gloss Collection ($32.50)
Make her holidays shimmer, glimmer and shine with six Pure Color Glosses. A great stocking stuffer—the perfect touch to dress up holiday lips or add shimmer atop her favorite Estée Lauder lipsticks. Elegant crocodile-embossed pouch holds Pure Color Gloss in Fresh Berry, Nude Rose and Clear, and Pure Color Crystal Gloss in Sugarcane, Honey Glaze and Plum.
Holiday Brush Set ($45.00)
Give her the pro style tools she needs to create great looks anywhere she goes. The perfect gift for any makeup fan, this exclusive collection includes four brushes she’ll use every day, all in a red satin travel case: Foundation Brush, Blush Brush, Eyeshadow Brush and Angled Eyeshadow Brush.
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