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NARS x Guy Bourdin Color & Gifting Collection Photos, Swatches + Commentary

NARS x Guy Bourdin Color Collection
NARS x Guy Bourdin Color Collection

Update:  I have added photos, swatches, and dupes for the products from the NARS x Guy Bourdin Gifting Collection.  The majority of the shades included in the Gifting collection are permanent to NARS’ color range. To ensure context, I’ve added them to the existing post, rather than make a separate post.  My goal is to raise awareness, open the channel for discussion (I highly recommend reading through readers’ comments and viewpoints), and to respect each reader’s autonomy and decision-making.  I strongly believe that we each must do our own research and come to the conclusion that feels right to us, whatever that may be.  Thank you for your continued support, respect, and understanding!

When the NARS x Guy Bourdin collaboration was first announced, I felt my readers’ excitement. I knew nothing about Bourdin, and having little interest in fashion photography, I didn’t look to learn any more than what was being widely reported. I’m here for the makeup, not the collaborators or inspiration or names, so when I see a new collection, I want to know what’s in it, what the colors are going to be, what the formulas and textures will feel like. It was not until I saw more and more readers comment on Bourdin and his emphasis on violence in his work, particularly of what seems to be best categorized as “high fashion crime scenes,” that I knew I needed to look a little further than the press release.

Warning:  This post contains discussion about violence against women, so please be warned that the discussion that follows and comments on the post may be a potentially triggering.

Bourdin’s body of work is not solely centered around violence as he also explored other themes like surrealism and sexuality. There are shots of vibrant, thriving women in his work; it is not all dark but certainly a good deal of his work is, and more to the point, many of his more controversial shots are more famous (which is not a surprise). I suggest visiting his website and browsing through his portfolio of photos–beware that some are more graphic than others–and in particular, the “Beauty” section showcases a different side of his work. There is no question that Bourdin was an artist, and he is legendary in his sphere.

I fully respect NARS’ decision to collaborate with someone who has influenced Francois Nars not just today but for years; that Bourdin was his inspiration for becoming a makeup artist is just how telling of the type and scope of impact Bourdin had on the industry as a whole. I don’t just see in black and white, which is not always a comforting thing, and I enjoy challenging people’s opinions and playing devil’s advocate. It has always been important to me to avoid mixing my personal beliefs (on such hot topics as sex, politics, religion, etc.) with the blog, because Temptalia is not just your escape but mine. This is the first time where how I feel has put me in such a quandary as to how to react.  First and foremost, I am abstaining from reviewing the NARS and Guy Bourdin collection, because I cannot fully dissociate how I feel about Bourdin’s art from a collection intended to pay tribute to him.

The idea that an advertisement or runway photoshoot that features dead women in designer clothing and shoes is used to sell to people is hard for me to wrap my head around. I am particularly sensitive to the concept of glamorizing violence, against women or men, because I worry it normalizes it in a way that makes us react less to a very real and prevalent issue not just in the U.S. but globally. Bourdin has passed away for some time now, so all of the visuals that showcase Bourdin’s work are images he previously shot, so none of them were originally intended to sell NARS’ makeup specifically (or possibly makeup at all, but you’d have to really go back through and figure out where each photo originated from). Many of the selected images for the NARS collaboration are not controversial or violent but some are certainly up for interpretation.

There’s an informative interview with Susan B. Carbon, Director of the U.S. DOJ’s Office, Violence Against Women, which also includes sobering statistics about the level of violence women experience (with sources cited). It speaks on and illuminates as to why violence against women is a real issue that we should be talking about, understanding, researching, and creating the resources, community, and culture that both prevents and reduces the violence that occurs (and we can do more than just prevent/reduce violence against women but all people). We, as a society, have made strides towards these goals, but we can do more and we should do more–and we need to remember to think globally on behalf of all women.

Here are some resources for learning more about this issue:

I have spent the past week and a half soul-searching and doing as much as I can to learn more about Bourdin, not just from those that feel similarly to me, but those who have assessed his work from an artistic point of view, to determine if I was still going to post photos/swatches. My focus was on his work, not him as a person.  We all want to be taken as the sum of our parts, not merely one part out of many, which is why I really wanted to take time to assess, digest, and react. I found this essay about the evolution of the “crime scene photograph” into news, fashion, and art a very good read. I understand that not everyone who views Bourdin’s work feels he glamorized violence against women or even if taken as true, is able to find other qualities of his work (lighting, colors, angles, composition, etc.) admirable as an artist or perhaps argue it is a statement on our own curiosity for the morbid or even the fashion industry and its consumptive nature. I have read various reactions, arguments for and against, from both outside sources as well as from readers in our community.

To that end, I respect each reader’s opinion, whether for or against.  So in a show of respect for a broad range of opinions, while I will not review or otherwise recommend the collection personally, you will find full photos and swatches of the products featured in the color collection for those who wanted to see them, and for those who did not want to purchase, I have included dupes for each shade that you may want to consider purchasing from instead.   From me to you, I wanted to use this time to also say, “Let’s not forget about what we can do to reduce violence against women.” In our consumption of controversial images, let’s not forget about the very real issues that real people face that the art seeks to recreate or transform.

I hope that you understand my decisions and know that they come from the heart after a lot of reflection, research, and reading. I urge you to do your own research and come to your own conclusions. All I want is us to ask questions and challenge what we’re seeing and being told (or sold) and go from there.

Update: Thank you SO, SO much from the bottom of my heart for the outpouring of support & understanding!  I am still reading through and responding to the incredible stories and comments that you have all left on this post, but I wanted to make sure everyone knows how meaningful your feedback and response has been! Thank you!

See dupes, photos & swatches!

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MAC Cockiness & Pisces Persuasion Superslick Eyeliners

MAC Cockiness Superslick Eyeliner
MAC Cockiness Superslick Eyeliner

MAC Cockiness Superslick Eyeliner ($20.50 for 0.06 fl. oz.) is described as a “shimmery rose gold [with a Frost finish].” It’s more like a brightened, medium copper with barely-there pink, gold, and copper shimmer. I tried to look at it several different lighting situations to see if it turned more rose gold, but it always looked rather coppery. It had mostly opaque color coverage and seemed quite pigmented in a single stroke. There are actually not that bad coppery eyeliners–this post compares a few here but none really compare favorably. MAC Rich Ground (P, $16.00) is much darker and browner. Giorgio Armani Copper (05) is lighter. See comparison swatches.

MAC Pisces Persuasion Superslick Eyeliner ($20.50 for 0.06 fl. oz.) is described as a “shimmery white [with a Frost finish].” It’s a milky white with neutral to slightly cool undertones and a white shimmer. This one was a little more translucent; it applied evenly but the milky white wasn’t fully opaque in one go. I think this might be better layered over something else. I couldn’t think of a dupe for this; I only could think of two eyeliners that were white but both were totally matte.

Neither of these eyeliners are going to be going anywhere once they’ve dried down and set.  They were easy to remove with a cleansing oil (I used shu’s), but I would opt for whatever your go-to remover is for anything super long-wearing or hard to remove, because a lot of lightweight makeup removers will struggle to remove these.  They are definitely waterproof and smudge-proof once dried.  The consistency, however, is watery initially, and because I applied to my lower lash line, I noticed that the first go-round, Pisces Persuasion actually pooled downward as it was setting–so just be careful where and how you apply it.

The MAC x RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday Collection launches in December. I don’t have a specific date yet, and as soon as I do, you’ll see me update the collection’s official information post. Your best bet is to catch me on Twitter or Facebook, as I usually make a mention on social media first 🙂

Cockiness
Cockiness
9
Product
9
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
91%
Total
8
Product
7.5
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
86%
Total

MAC Love, Rihanna Bronzing Powder

MAC Love, Rihanna Bronzing Powder
MAC Love, Rihanna Bronzing Powder

MAC Love, Rihanna Bronzing Powder ($30.00) is described as a “soft golden brown with gold pearl.” It’s a medium brown with warm, yellow-orange undertones and a barely-there satin finish. Wet ‘n’ Wild Bikini Contest (P, $3.99) is slightly darker. MAC Hibiscus Kiss Bronzer (LE, $25.00) is similar–a touch yellower. Clarins Splendours (LE, $35.00) is darker. Burberry Copper Glow (P, $48.00) is similar. NARS Laguna (P, $36.00) is browner, more shimmery. MAC Soft Sand (LE, $25.00) is less orange. Dior Pink Glow Bronzer (LE) is lighter. See comparison swatches.

Now, for the first several swatches or uses of the product, it’s a completely different color, because the raised “R” in the compact has a copper-hued frost over-spray which dramatically changes the color to a coppery, medium-dark brown. Unfortunately, it is just an over-spray, as I vigorously brushed away all of the over-spray on the lettering, and it did disappear, and I did, also, dig into the pan a bit and only saw more of the softer brown color come through. I think this could have been more of a special shade if the color on the “R” went all the way through the powder. The consistency of the powdery was fairly soft and velvety, and it blended easily on the skin.  It had decent to good color payoff (judging by once all of the over-spray was removed).  I wore it yesterday, and it wore well for seven and a half hours, and then it started to look a bit faded after eight hours of wear.  The best part about the powder was how blendable it was, but it is similar to a lot of bronzers by MAC (including Hibiscus Kisswhich launched in the summer under the RiRi Hearts MAC banner).

The MAC x RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday Collection launches in December. I don’t have a specific date yet, and as soon as I do, you’ll see me update the collection’s official information post. Your best bet is to catch me on Twitter or Facebook, as I usually make a mention on social media first 🙂

Please note:  this is a sneak peek.  I’m in the process of testing for wear, and as soon as I wrap up testing, I will update this post with that information as well as a full rating.

9
Product
9
Pigmentation
9
Texture
8
Longevity
5
Application
89%
Total

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MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday 2013 Lipsticks Reviews, Photos, & Swatches

MAC Bad Girl RiRi Lipstick
MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Lipsticks

MAC Bad Girl RiRi Lipstick ($16.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “matte taupey nude [with a Matte finish].” It’s a medium-dark, rosy brown with warm undertones and a matte finish. It had rich, opaque color coverage, and the consistency was just lightly creamy–enough that it didn’t tug or pull at the lips much but still left a matte finish behind.  It wore well for five and a half hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. It’s nothing like Nude from the fall collection. Bobbi Brown Soft Nude (P, $24.00) is glossier. MAC Spice (LE, $15.00) is not quite as warm-toned and has a sheen but is still very similar. MAC Shanghai Spice (LE, $15.00) is lighter, less matte. MAC Double Shot (P, $15.00) is browner, less matte. MAC Brick-o-la (P, $15.00) is pinker. Guerlain Avarice (P, $49.50) is similar. Burberry Antique Pink (303) (P, $30.00) is lighter just a smidgen. Bobbi Brown Uber Nude (P, $24.00) is browner, less matte. See comparison swatches.

MAC Pleasure Bomb Lipstick ($16.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “matte fuchsia [with a Matte finish].” It’s a vibrant, brightened fuchsia with some red and cool, blue undertones and a matte finish. It had extremely good pigmentation, and it gave full color coverage when applied. The consistency was, again, creamy enough so it didn’t drag much on lips (just a tiny bit) and left behind a matte finish from the get-go. This shade will basically last until you remove it–it’s very, very long-wearing but it starts to get a bit drying after six hours of wear.  Guerlain Provocative (863) (LE, $49.50) is warmer, redder. MAC All Fired Up (P, $15.00) is redder. Givenchy Fuchsia Irresistible (205) (P, $36.00) is less matte. MAC Moxie (LE, $15.00) is a smidgen more fuchsia. MAC Lickable (P, $15.00) is less matte. MAC Impassioned (P, $15.00) is similar. MAC Girl About Town (P, $15.00) is a touch bluer-based, less matte. Guerlain Gigi (P, $49.50) is less matte. Guerlain Champs-Elysees (P, $35.00) is less matte. See comparison swatches.

The MAC x RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday Collection launches in December. The collection also repromotes RiRi Woo (review here).  I don’t have a specific date yet, and as soon as I do, you’ll see me update the collection’s official information post. Your best bet is to catch me on Twitter or Facebook, as I usually make a mention on social media first 🙂

Bad Girl RiRi
Bad Girl RiRi
9
Product
10
Pigmentation
9
Texture
9.5
Longevity
4.5
Application
93%
Total
Pleasure Bomb
Pleasure Bomb
8
Product
10
Pigmentation
9
Texture
10
Longevity
4.5
Application
92%
Total

MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Makeup Bag Review & Photos

MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Makeup Bag
MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Makeup Bag

MAC RiRi Hearts MAC Makeup Bag ($40.00) is described is a muted, medium pink bag that seems to turn almost rose gold when the light hits it. When it’s just duller, cooler lighting, it looks more like a dusky pink. The exterior of the bag feels like faux leather, and the inside is lined with a soft, silk-like liner that has “RiRi Hearts MAC” printed on it. There is a small, clear plastic pocket on the interior of one side of the bag. There is a rose gold zipper pull that says “MAC” on it. The bag is 7 inches in width, 5 inches in height, and just over 1.5 inches in depth. It has a good size–should fit everyday essentials easily as well as a quick, weekend trip’s worth of color products.

The MAC x RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday Collection launches in December. I don’t have a specific date yet, and as soon as I do, you’ll see me update the collection’s official information post. Your best bet is to catch me on Twitter or Facebook, as I usually make a mention on social media first 🙂

MAC RiRi Woo Nail Lacquer

MAC RiRi Woo Nail Lacquer
MAC RiRi Woo Nail Lacquer

MAC RiRi Woo Nail Lacquer ($17.50 for 0.34 fl. oz.) is described as a “matte cool red [with a Cream finish].” It’s a brightened, medium red with cool, blue undertones and a cream finish. It was extremely pigmented–almost totally opaque in one coat–and was fully opaque in two coats. The consistency wasn’t too thick or too thin, so it spread across the nail easily and didn’t pool along the edges. I typically get a week of wear out of MAC’s polish–usually where MAC polish goes downhill is with the consistency or application, but RiRi Woo applied well and looked great.  Because it is a red cream, it’s easier to dupe, though.  Chanel Cinema (P, $27.00) is similar. MAC Russian Red (LE, $16.00) is similar. MAC Flaming Rose (P, $16.00) is a touch darker. See comparison swatches.

The MAC x RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday Collection launches in December. I don’t have a specific date yet, and as soon as I do, you’ll see me update the collection’s official information post. Your best bet is to catch me on Twitter or Facebook, as I usually make a mention on social media first 🙂

RiRi Woo
RiRi Woo
9.5
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
9
Longevity
5
Application
97%
Total