Monday, July 16th, 2012

Chanel Vertigo Le Vernis / Nail Lacquer
Chanel Vertigo Le Vernis / Nail Lacquer

Chanel Vertigo Le Vernis / Nail Lacquer ($26.00 for 0.40 fl. oz.) is described as a “grey-black.” I’d like to describe it as one weird color that’s impossible to describe! In the bottle, it’s like a deep, dark smoky plummy brown with bits of shimmer in it. In natural light, it’s an inky brown with a hint of gray and touch of burgundy. In bright light, it’s a plum-tinged brown with bronze and red shimmer. Cult Nails Enigmatic is redder, lighter, purpler. Rescue Beauty Lounge Recherche is purpler, more eggplant than brown. Illamasqua Baptiste is definitely purple. Chanel Paradoxal is purpler, less brown (but it’s kind of the closest in “feel”). China Glaze Bogie is duller, more purple.

Oh, Vertigo is a complex one, which is what you hope for when Chanel debuts a new shade.  I don’t know if it’s a pretty shade or one of those pretty-ugly kind of shades that people either love or hate.  I see myself closer to the love it crowd, but I don’t think it’s particularly flattering against my skin tone, so it’s not something I’d end up reaching for. I always appreciate it when a brand manages to come up with a color that’s more nuanced or harder to dupe.  I wish the shimmer was more noticeable, though, because it’s nearly invisible under most lighting conditions!

Chanel’s formula wears a full week on me with minor tip wear but no chipping.  The consistency of Vertigo was just right–not too thick or too thin–and it applied easily and evenly.  The color was fully opaque after two coats.

The Glossover

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Vertigo

A
Oh, Vertigo is a complex one, which is what you hope for when Chanel debuts a new shade. I don't know if it's a pretty shade or one of those pretty-ugly kind of shades that people either love or hate.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

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Monday, July 16th, 2012

Chanel Caprice Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss
Chanel Caprice Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss

Chanel Caprice Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss ($32.00 for 0.28 fl. oz.) is described as a “delicate pink.” It’s a warm, yellow-toned light-medium peach-tinted pink with soft pink and gold micro-shimmer–surprisingly warm, actually. Bobbi Brown Pink Sorbet is pinker, darker. Chanel Confidence is much pinker and cooler-toned.

It’s new for fall but limited edition. It comes in a black lacquered square tube that has heft and feels luxurious when held. The applicator is a flocked sponge with an indentation on both sides. Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss is supposed to be non-sticky, shiny, long-wearing, and comfortable to wear with “bold color.” The gloss has a faint floral scent but no detectable taste.  The texture is gel-like, so it’s not thin but it’s not thick or goopy; it slides and moves around easily but doesn’t bleed or feather (though the majority of the shades are fairly light!).

Caprice has full color coverage–entirely hiding my lip freckle–and despite its lightness in color, it doesn’t really settle noticeably into lip lines and applies evenly. The texture is more non-sticky than not, but there is just a hint of tackiness that develops over time. While it no doubt wears well and wears away evenly, it only lasts four and a half hours on me–above average but not by much (average for gloss is three to four hours).  The biggest area this product lost points on was its wear; it’s just not a long-wearing gloss. Good wear and incredibly comfortable on with opaque color, and it even has a little more gloss than a lot of glosses on the market–worth a look-see as long as the wear isn’t a deal-breaker for you.

The Glossover

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Caprice

A
Good wear and incredibly comfortable on with opaque color, and it even has a little more gloss than a lot of glosses on the market--worth a look-see as long as the wear isn't a deal-breaker for you.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

5/5

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Sunday, July 15th, 2012

NARS Exhibit A Highlighting Blush
NARS Exhibit A Blush

NARS Exhibit A Blush

NARS Exhibit A Blush ($28.00 for 0.16 oz.) is described as a “matte vivid red.” It’s a brightened medium-dark orange-red with a mostly matte finish. MAC Out for Fun is lighter, less red. MAC Modern Mandarin is lighter, more orange, less red. Benefit Cha Cha is more orange, slightly lighter. NARS Liberte is darker, rustier–not as bright.  On the cheeks, it can look as bright as the pan, or if applied more softly, you’ll get kind of a orange-coral look almost.

Exhibit A is famous for its pigmentation–it is wow! in the pan, because it’s truly a fiery sight to see in stores, but it’s just as intense when used. Using this shade absolutely requires a feather-light touch and the proper tools (I like a fan brush) as a result, particularly if you are really light in coloring.  Because of its excellent pigmentation, it will show up as readily on darker complexions as it will on lighter ones. Even though NARS describes it as red, there’s a lot of orange and not as much red in it as you’d expect.  Still, there’s red, there’s orange, but there’s not a lot of yellow–it’s only barely warm in tone.

I think what really makes this shade sing is the texture.  It’s soft, silky, and applies smoothly; it’s not too soft that it becomes powdery, but it’s not too dry that it becomes a pain in the behind to blend. It strikes a balance between softness and blendability that is really required with a shade like this.  I wore Exhibit A to see how well it would wear, and it lasted a full eight hours and started looking a bit faded after just under nine hours.

The Glossover

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Exhibit A

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Because of its excellent pigmentation, it will show up as readily on darker complexions as it will on lighter ones. Even though NARS describes it as red, there's a lot of orange and not as much red in it as you'd expect.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

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Saturday, July 14th, 2012

Guerlain Luxure Rouge G L'Extrait
Guerlain Luxure Rouge G L’Extrait

Guerlain Luxure Rouge G L’Extrait

Guerlain Luxure Rouge G L’Extrait ($48.00 for 0.20 fl. oz.) is described as “deeper red for lust.” Luxure is an orange-toned red with a mostly matte finish. MAC Red Racer is brighter and has less orange, more yellow in its base. Guerlain Habit Rouge is a little lighter. Make Up For Ever #44 is very similar. MAC Ruffian Red is a little brighter, less darkened. Guerlain Geisha has a stronger orange base and orange-gold shimmer.

This is a new product for Guerlain, and it’s best described as a liquid lipstick. It has the consistency, feel, and wear of a liquid lipstick. Creamy without being too thick, but not at all thin, and extremely opaque. It dries down to that mostly matte finish–there’s a subtle, natural sheen as a result.  Even after wearing the formula several times, I’m undecided on whether I love it or not.  Luxure hung on for eight hours no problem, and of course, the color after eight hours wasn’t exactly the same as the initial application, but it was still at 90% or so, after eating and drinking. It’s even moisturizing.  Matte lip color that is long-wearing and hydrating? Hard to come by.

There’s a lot of transfer, which is the characteristic that put me on the fence. For a matte, long-wearing lip color, there was a surprising amount of transfer for hours after initial application.  It doesn’t seem to have an affect on the wear, though, and it never feathered or bled around the edges, which you might have expected with a product that never fully dries down.  Don’t kiss your honey with this on (not that most lip colors are kiss-proof).  It doesn’t say transfer-resistant or -proof in the press release, but I think the matte finish had me thinking it would have less transfer (because this felt like more than usual–more in keeping with a gloss!).

It’s more matte and creamier compared to Chanel’s Rouge Allure Laque formula. They’re not the same; it’s hard to describe the differences, but when you apply, they’re not the same. I’d describe Chanel’s formula as slicker, while Guerlain’s is creamier, maybe a touch thicker. Not as glossy as Korres’ Liquid Lipsticks, not as thick as NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Creams, thicker than Bare Minerals’ Pretty Amazing Lipcolors.

Ultra-pigmented, long-wearing, hydrating, doesn’t feather or bleed, and easy to remove.  It does everything it’s supposed to do and does it excellently.  I think the consistency could be marginally thinner, because it’s easy to over-apply the product.  You’re almost better off using a separate lip brush so you get just the amount you actually need.

The lip color is packaged in a silver metallic tube (shaped just like the Rouge G lipsticks, just longer, so it also has the flip mirror), and you pull the top outwards and then twist to open. It has a doe-foot applicator.  I did really like that Guerlain added a little plastic piece that’s the same color as the plastic insert to indicate the color of the gloss. It’s such a pain trying to read the small printed name on the back of the tubes.  I give kudos to Guerlain for using higher-end packaging to go with their higher-end prices, rather than plastic, which a lot of competing brands use.  Of course, metal packaging holds fingerprints, so it’s kind of a draw.

The Glossover

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product

Luxure

A
Ultra-pigmented, long-wearing, hydrating, doesn't feather or bleed, and easy to remove. It does everything it's supposed to do and does it excellently.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, July 13th, 2012

Cult Nails Spontaneous Nail Lacquer
Cult Nails Spontaneous Nail Lacquer

Cult Nails Spontaneous Nail Lacquer ($10.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is described as a “dark, deep, dusty purple creme with vibrant purple glitter.” It’s dusty eggplant purple with red undertones and scattered violet micro-glitter. MAC Festive Finery is more muted, less purple, smokier, and has no shimmer. Cult Nails Enigmatic is much darker and browner, less purple. China Glaze Urban Night is redder, more wine-colored.

It’s opaque after two coats, and though the glitter is sparse, it disperses evenly–you don’t have to wobble around the brush just so in order to spread out the glitter. The formula wasn’t too thick or too thin, though it was on the thinner side. It dried down fairly quickly and has a naturally shiny finish, but I’d use a top coat for a smooth, ultra-shiny finish. I didn’t have any trouble during application; the polish didn’t bubble, streak, or pool to the sides. I typically get a full week or more with Cult Nails’ formula, which is absolutely stellar as far as wear goes.

The Glossover

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product

Spontaneous

A
If you love eggplant-y purples with subtle red undertones, you might like Spontaneous. It goes on easily, evenly, and opaquely in two coats. I've always had excellent wear with Cult Nails' lacquers!

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Rescue Beauty Lounge Abi Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Abi Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Abi Nail Lacquer

Rescue Beauty Lounge Abi Nail Lacquer ($20.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is medium-dark warm, yellowy green with pale chartreuse micro-shimmer. There wasn’t anything I could think of that felt like a genuine dupe, but the best I could come up with was Butter London Dosh, which is lighter, more chartreuse, and has much larger shimmer particles. Rescue Beauty Lounge No More War is much more of an olive green. Chanel Khaki Vert is more muted, less yellow-toned, very murky. China Glaze Peace on Earth is more olive green with gold shimmer.

Abi was opaque in two coats, and the formula runs on the thicker side but not at all problematic for it. It feels and almost looks like a cream, but there is gorgeous micro-shimmer that’s so very fine and delicate but noticeable and there. It’s been awhile since I’ve used any RBLs, but applying Abi reminded me why I keep buying them.  I don’t think I’ve missed any collections in some time, but they’re usually sold out by the time I get a chance to swatch them so then I don’t bother–I tried to start on these as soon as my order arrived.  I’ve always had great wear with the brand’s formula; it usually wears a full week with very minimal tip wear.

The Glossover

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product

Abi

A
The color coverage is excellent, and the way this brand does micro-shimmer is exceptional. It's noticeable but just as fine as you'd expect, so it's subtle and delicate-looking.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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