Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

Givenchy Poetique Blues Eyeshadow Palette

Givenchy Poetique Blues Prismissime Eyes

Givenchy Poetique Blues Prismissime Eyes ($53.00 for 0.12 oz.) is one of two eyeshadow palettes released with Givenchy’s Les Poetiques Collection for fall. It features nine different marbled/splattered eyeshadows.

Here’s a quick rundown of the colors, row by row, left to right:

  • Top row: a pale, icy pink; a bluish-gray with a purple cast; an icy silvery white
  • Middle row: a pale bright silver-white; a light champagne-beige; an icy, light purple
  • Bottom row: a warm-toned pale peach-champagne; a dirty champagne taupe; a dark purple

This is one of the more pigmented Givenchy palettes I’ve played with, so I’m happy to see they increased the pigmentation level in the latest limited edition palettes. There’s also a good assortment of shades, though two of them are close to another two within the palette, so that’s a bit of a downer. If you’re not a fan of shimmers and frost finishes, you’re not going to like this palette (or most other Givenchy palettes for that matter).

Givenchy always excels at making packaging functional and sleek, and this fall is no exception. The eyeshadows themselves look funky (in a good way!) and the outside casing is pretty. They do include three different sized sponge-tipped brushes underneath the eyeshadows, though I’d never use them unless in a pinch (use real brushes if you can!).

Even though Givenchy is a high-end, closer-to-luxury brand of cosmetics, its eyeshadow palettes are extraordinarily priced. Normally, palettes are less expensive (by the ounce) than single eyeshadows, but with Givenchy, you’d be getting more for your money by buying single eyeshadows! (For reference, the palette is $441.67/oz. vs. single eyeshadow at $383.33/oz.)

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 6/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation: One of the nicest Givenchy palettes this year with better color pay off and a good assortment of shades perfect for fall (and winter, too!)… it’s just on the pricey side and doesn’t come cheap.

AvailabilitySephora

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Saturday, September 5th, 2009

Smashbox Reign Collection Majesty Eyeshadow Palette

Smashbox Reign Collection: Majesty Palette

Smashbox Reign Majesty Eyeshadow Palette ($42.00) is a trio of eyeshadows housed in a leather flip top palette. Each eyeshadow has a shimmery outer ring with a matte center. Majesty features a pale peach, a reddish copper, and a black.

I found that it was difficult to keep the matte and shimmers separated from each other, because inevitably one would mix with the other. This sort of rendered the matte center to be a little useless, just because it ended up looking much like the outer ring. I was testing a tester, so it was even worse than a palette with normal usage (e.g. the one you’d buy!), so do keep that in mind while browsing the swatches! I will caution you to dust off your palette regularly to avoid shimmer getting into your matte centers!

The first shade is a soft, shimmery peachy-gold. The middle eyeshadow is more of a burnt brown with reddish shimmer. I know Sephora describes it as a “plum burgundy,” and I didn’t see that whatsoever when I swatched it. The center of the middle eyeshadow was similar, just more of a matte finish, and it applied sheerly (as did all of the centers). The rightmost eyeshadow in the palette is a blue-shimmered black, which isn’t as smooth as I’d like — I did get a little drag when I swatched it. Again, the center is a sheerer, matte-r version of the outer ring.

I’m disappointed that the center of each eyeshadow shade didn’t swatch better, and I’m not thrilled that they go on sheerer than the outer rings either. The colors are wearable, but they don’t seem out-of-the-norm, and I’d say Smashbox single eyeshadows feel smoother, silkier, and I’d probably opt for one or two of those instead of the palette, if you already have these shades covered! These three shades work well together, and you can easily create a few smoky eyes with this one.

However, there is one big selling point to this eyeshadow palette that shouldn’t be overlooked — it’s very high in value! With 0.423 oz. of eyeshadow in the palette, it brings your cost down well below costs per ounce in any other high-end brand of eyeshadow. These eyeshadows are about $100/oz. compared to MAC at $290/oz., Urban Decay at $320/oz., and Make Up For Ever at $240/oz. You’ll either love the packaging or it won’t make or break the purchase for you; for me, it was more the latter.

  • Product: 7/10
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 7/10

Recommendation: If you like products high in value, this palette is well worth the investment, particularly if you want to add more neutrals to your collection.

Availability: Sephora

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Monday, August 24th, 2009


Tarte Natural Cheek Stain in Green Siren

Naturally Beautiful Cheeks: Green Siren by Tarte

Tarte Green Siren Natural Cheek Stain ($30.00) is a semi-sheer peachy-bronze with golden shimmer and a slight frosty sheen. Tarte really knows how to do an effortless cheek, because their cheek stains are always above the bar. Their latest shade, Green Siren, in the Natural Beauty Cheek Stain product line, for fall, is gorgeous. It is particularly flattering on those with neutral or warm tones, though it the shade isn’t overly warm, so it is still pretty and suitable for cooler skin tones.

When applied, cheeks look naturally glowy and look luminous without being too frosty or glittery. The product feels smooth and creamy and applies easily to cheeks without leaving behind any harsh lines. It can be easily blended out with a stippling brush like the 188. My only issue with the product was the packaging/applicator, because when you push the gel blush up, and then apply it directly from the tube, the blush gets pushed back into the tube. It was a bit annoying, and I think it’s something that could be fixed.

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 7/10
  • Packaging: 7/10

Recommendation: This is a great shade to transition from summer to fall as we start to countdown the days of summer. It’s natural and beautiful, and it is hard to over-do.

Availability: Sephora.com, tartecosmetics.com

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Saturday, August 22nd, 2009

Bobbi Brown Goes Green for Fall, Take 2

Bobbi Brown Forest Shimmer Ink Gel Eyeliner ($21.00) is a new shade as part of Bobbi Brown’s Ivy League Collection.  Forest Shimmer Ink is a deep, olive-brown green with soft golden-olive shimmer.  It’s a very dark green-brown, and it is not lat all forest green to me (which is a bit brighter, more fervently green).  The addition of brown to the green makes it incredibly wearable, even to the office.  It has good pigmentation, goes on smooth and creamy, and then dries down and lasts me all day (on the lower lash line–not the waterline).

  • Product: 8/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Packaging: 7/10

Recommendation:  For gel liner fans, this is an excellent shade to add to your stash.  It goes well with other greens, but it works with golds and browns, too, making it a versatile shade.  It even works well as a base — particularly under greens to give them a little more oomph!

Availability: Nordstrom, BobbiBrownCosmetics.com

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Friday, August 21st, 2009

Bobbi Brown Goes Green for Fall

Bobbi Brown Bash Metallic Eyeshadow ($20.00) is one of three eyeshadows featured as part of Bobbi Brown’s Ivy League Collection for the fall season.  Bash is a glimmering shade of deep forest green with gold-green flecks of shimmer sheen.

The shade itself has a metallic-frost sheen, and the color is intense without being too bold or dark (and thus looking more black-green than like a green).  It’s even prettier when layered over Forest Shimmer Ink Gel Eyeliner, actually!  It turns it into a darker, fiercer green.

  • Product: 9/10
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Packaging: 8/10

Recommendation:  If you’re a green fiend like I am, this is definitely a must-have forest green.  It’s vivid without leaning too green nor too black, and it has just enough shimmer and gold sheen to make it easy to blend and use.

Availability: Nordstrom, BobbiBrownCosmetics.com

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Friday, August 7th, 2009

shu uemura’s Primitribe Collection is a good mix of neutrals and color. I absolutely adored the Painting Liner, which was creamy, incredibly pigmented, and easy to work with. The Primal Color Sticks were interesting, but without testing them at-home, I can’t tell you if they actually last at all. Unfortunately, the U.S. launch of Primitribe doesn’t include everything — we won’t be seeing Spinel, the pink painting liner as far as I can tell.

Primitribe Color Stick

  • Rich Earth is a warm-toned, chocolate brown with golden shimmer.
  • Night Maroon is a satiny burgundy-wine with more of a creamy finish than a shimmer finish.
  • Blazed Gold is a warm-toned, yellow gold with lighter gold shimmer.
  • Misty Grove is an olive green with a creamy texture and light shimmer.

Primitribe Mix Blush

  • Echo is a blush duo of a pink-toned brown and a dark gold with gold shimmer.
  • Rhythm contains a large section of rosy pink and a smaller section of muted, warmed-up light medium brown with gold shimmer.
  • Soul is a combination of a satin-y medium-toned orange and a warm, medium dark chocolate brown with pale gold shimmer.

Painting Liner

  • Turquoise is a bright pop of creamy, blue-based turquoise with silver micro glitter.
  • Citrine is an insanely bright, creamy yellow with a slight sheen.

Rouge Unlimited

  • BG 942 is a creamy, mostly opaque peachy-orange.
  • WN 296 is a dark, vampy burgundy-red with a glossy finish.

Nail Enamel

  • P 980 is a pale, pastel peachy-cream with a frosty finish.
  • WN 296 is a bright, fuchsia-red with pink pearl.

Available: August 2009; currently available in-store at Nordstrom and online at NeimanMarcus.com.

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