Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

Le Metier de Beaute Framboise Creme Lip Creme
Le Metier de Beaute Framboise Creme Lip Creme

Holiday Reds: Le Metier de Beaute Framboise Creme

Le Metier de Beaute Framboise Creme Lip Creme ($36.00 for 0.22 oz.) is a brilliant shade of radiant ruby red with glimmering white, ruby, and pale gold shimmer. I love this Lip Creme not only for its scarlet hue but for the intense pigmentation in just one swipe. This gloss is absolutely pigmented–even pigmented lips would see much truer-to-color results than the norm.

This is the third time I’ve put the spotlight on Framboise Creme–it continues to be one of my favorite reds and go-to shades for the holidays. The rich formula, high gloss shine, and moisturizing feel always make it a pleasure to wear.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 30/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Yes and yes! If you love reds, Framboise Creme is definitely worth the indulgence.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Sunday, November 21st, 2010

Estee Lauder Night Bloom Pure Color Gloss Stick
Estee Lauder Night Bloom Pure Color Gloss Stick

Estee Lauder Gloss Sticks: Night Bloom

Estee Lauder Night Bloom Pure Color Gloss Stick ($18.50 for 0.08 oz.) is the warmer sister of Mauve Mirage. It’s a warmer pink with soft golden shimmer with a glossy finish. The color itself is semi-opaque (very close to being opaque, actually) but still looks soft and elegant.

The Pure Color Gloss Stick formula is very creamy–it’s very much gloss-meets-lipstick in terms of the texture and feel on lips. I love that the color is semi-opaque without feeling heavy, and even though it has plenty of shine, it still lasts three to four hours and keeps lips soft. Like many other Estee Lauder lip products, it does have that sweet fig scent but no taste.

I think for those who were disappointed when MAC discontinued their Slimshines, you will find Estee Lauder’s Gloss Sticks to be a nice alternative. (And given that they’re all owned by the same company, may be closer in formula than you think!) The only criticism I have is regarding how little product they give you–0.08 oz. is rather undersized relative to Estee Lauder’s Lipsticks (0.13 oz.).

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you love creamy lip color that still delivers on color while providing high-shine, these Gloss Sticks might be what you’re looking for.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Saturday, November 20th, 2010

Estee Lauder Mauve Mirage Pure Color Gloss Stick
Estee Lauder Mauve Mirage Pure Color Gloss Stick

Estee Lauder Gloss Sticks:  Mauve Mirage

Estee Lauder Mauve Mirage Pure Color Gloss Stick ($18.50 for 0.08 oz.) was a little surprise! It swatched a little sheer, almost streakily, but it was absolutely gorgeous applied. It’s a lovely shade of subdued cotton candy pink with a blue-base and subtle gold shimmer.

The Pure Color Gloss Stick formula is very creamy–it’s very much gloss-meets-lipstick in terms of the texture and feel on lips. I love that the color is semi-opaque without feeling heavy, and even though it has plenty of shine, it still lasts three to four hours and keeps lips soft. Like many other Estee Lauder lip products, it does have that sweet fig scent but no taste.

I think for those who were disappointed when MAC discontinued their Slimshines, you will find Estee Lauder’s Gloss Sticks to be a nice alternative. (And given that they’re all owned by the same company, may be closer in formula than you think!) The only criticism I have is regarding how little product they give you–0.08 oz. is rather undersized relative to Estee Lauder’s Lipsticks (0.13 oz.).

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you love creamy lip color that still delivers on color while providing high-shine, these Gloss Sticks might be what you’re looking for.

AVAILABILITY: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010

NARS Bougainville Lip Gloss
NARS Bougainville Lip Gloss

NARS Holiday 2010:  Bougainville

NARS Bougainville Lip Gloss ($24.00 for 0.28 oz.) is described as a “sensual pomegranate … with dramatic, diva-esque color.” The description also goes on to say “deep in pigment yet sheer on the lips,” which is an interesting statement. NARS’ Lip Gloss is non-sticky and scent- and taste-free, though they have been known to smell a bit like plastic or wax. I did not notice any scent whatsoever with my Bougainville, though.

It is similar to fall’s Strawberry Fields in the way it is pigmented, creamy, lacks shimmer, and is non-sticky. The colors, however, are noticeably different. While Strawberry Fields is a bright raspberry pink-red, Bougainville is a rich berry. It has the same color-rich look with a glossy shine but no shimmer, though. This is Strawberry Fields’ older, more sophisticated best friend.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: Because of the richness in color, it would look lovely on cooler, paler complexions for a strong contrast, but it would also flatter deeper skin tones. I think this is more wearable than Strawberry Fields, because it’s dark without being ultra vampy.

AVAILABILITY: NARS

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Rescue Beauty Lounge Red Polishes
Rescue Beauty Lounge: Glamourpuss, Chinoise, Bangin’

Rescue Beauty Lounge: Glamourpuss, Chinoise, Bangin’

Rescue Beauty Lounge recently held their annual 50% off sale, and I must admit, I indulged. I’ve been waiting for this sale for months (ever since buying my first RBLs). I could have sworn I saw someone mention it may be the last 50% off sale… anyway, I couldn’t resist.

The next three I want to share with you are: Glamourpuss (classic true red), Chinoise (lacquered like a Chinese screen), and Bangin’ (hot red coral).  Like the first three, I don’t think these are particularly unique, never-before-seen kind of shades, but they are top-notch in quality.

  • Glamourpuss is a deep red cream with a hint of berry. What I like about this shade is it is definitely not a bright red cream, but it is still bright enough that it won’t be mistaken for black or brown either. This is a red that doesn’t lean blue or orange, which makes it suitable for a variety of skin tones.
    Two coats.
  • Chinoise is a bright red cream. It’s vibrant without being neon or flashy. On me, my skin seems to pull out very slight orange undertones.  I would say it’s similar to Essie’s Red Nouveau.  Two coats.
  • Bangin’ is rich, fiery red coral cream. It’s similar to China Glaze’s Revolution–but not quite as orange.  SpaRitual’s Love & Happiness would also make a decent dupe. Two coats.

All three shades featured in this post were richly pigmented, applied evenly and never streaked, and only needed two coats for full opacity. Each shade retails for $18, and due to the recent 50% off sale, many shades are sold out for the time being.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: I don’t think you need all three of these, but they are nice vampier shades that lean on the red/brown side. Between Glamourpuss and Bangin’, I’d definitely only opt for one or the other if you’re on a budget.

AVAILABILITY: Rescue Beauty Lounge

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Monday, November 15th, 2010

Dior Five Golds Eyeshadow Quint
Dior Five Golds Eyeshadow Quint

Metallics Done Right!

Dior Five Golds Eyeshadow Quint ($58.00 for 0.21 oz.) is one of two new and limited edition holiday quints.  As indicated, it includes five shades of eyeshadow, and this is a palette with a rather metallic feel and look.  I purchased this as part of my Sephora Friends & Family haul!

It has a similar theme as MAC’s Rockers & Reelers Eyeshadow Palette, because both have a lot of metallic-like finishes, but the colors themselves are a bit different. Dior’s metallic quint is closer to neutral, while MAC’s is on the warmer side.

Five Golds includes a dark charcoal gray with a soft silver sparkle; subdued copper-gold with a metallic finish; semi-sheer icy white-gold with a bright shimmer-shine; chocolate bronze with a metallic finish; and a bright, light silver with a high metallic shine. Every shade had rich pigmentation except the lightest white-gold shade, which was on the sheer side, and it also had more of a glittery feel compared to the smoother texture of the other four shades. It looks a lot yellower in the pan than when used, though. The other four shades were true-to-pan in terms of color.

This is probably one of my favorite Dior quints in terms of quality; the shades are smooth, soft without being powdery, and really rich in color. Dior’s eyeshadow quints are always a better value than their singles or duos, though it is still more expensive than Chanel’s eyeshadow quads (but less than Guerlain’s!). Even though the shades are dupeable by other brands, the finish and texture really hit home.

FYI, Sephora lists this as “001” while the back of it does list the name as Five Golds alongside the 001 number.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you love your metallics, this may be something to add to your holiday wish list.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →