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Guerlain Terra Azzurra Bronzer & Blush

Guerlain Terra Azzurra Bronzer & Blush
Guerlain Terra Azzurra Bronzer & Blush

Guerlain Terra Azzurra Bronzer & Blush

Guerlain Terra Azzurra Bronzer & Blush ($75.00 for 0.56 oz.) is made up of half bronzer and half blush. The collection is a collaboration with Emilio Pucci, and the print chosen was “Winter Capri.” I really liked that Guerlain changed up the compact’s cloth case, and it’s a very appropriate print for summer. It’s bold, vibrant, but has that summery, beachy breeze feel. It’s definitely more interesting than the velvety pouches we typically see.

Inside, there are four distinct shades, with over half of the compact made up of an orange-tinted tan with a very subtle satiny sheen. MAC Tan Tint is a little yellower. MAC Cajun is similar but more golden, less red-toned. MAC Sun Power is pretty similar, though a tad rustier. MAC Pink Power is similar. Urban Decay Toasted is also very similar. The bronzer seems fairly easy to replicate, and it does have subtle orange and red undertones.

The other three shades make up the other half (or less) of the compact. The first is a pale pink-white that really didn’t deposit much color, just shimmer. It was nearly imperceptible when I swatched it. Next to that is a medium pink with subtle blue undertones. Between the pink and the bronzer, there is a muted orange. These shades are done in a thin swirl, so they’re not particularly usable individually, though the bronzer could be used on its own.

When you mix the three blush shades, you’ll get a more coral-pink kind of color, and when you mix all four shades together, you get a tangerine-coral with a satiny sheen.  Becca Damselfly is similar but less pigmented and more golden in sheen. MAC My Paradise is more orange, more gold shimmered. Make Up For Ever #153 has a stronger golden sheen. It actually reminded me of MAC Ripe Peach quite a bit.

As expected, the texture is soft and smooth–very finely-milled–but not too dense, so it doesn’t feel powdery or kick-up excess product when you tap your brush against the surface. It blends out easily once applied, but it doesn’t fade away into nothing, so it’s well-balanced. When I tested out the wear, it wore well for around seven hours and looked slightly faded around the edges after eight hours. This powder is heavily fragranced with a floral scent, so if you are sensitive to scents, I recommend checking it out in person or finding a way to de-scent the powder. I had it open on my studio table, and I could catch whiffs of the fragrance from a foot away–the scent, of course, is not nearly as noticeable when it’s applied as it is in the compact.

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Bobbi Brown Citrus Sheer Color Lipgloss

Bobbi Brown Citrus Sheer Color Lipgloss
Bobbi Brown Citrus Sheer Color Lipgloss

Bobbi Brown Citrus Sheer Color Lipgloss ($23.00 for 0.24 fl. oz.) is described as a “sheer neon orange.” It’s a sheer tangerine orange that gives lips a darker, warmer look. It adds subtle color without looking opaque, but it definitely does something. Le Metier de Beaute Orange Juiced looks very, very similar–it just has shimmer.

I like the lightweight feel of Bobbi Brown’s Sheer Color Lipgloss, and it has a mint scent (but no taste) like the rest of her gloss line. The color is certainly sheer, but there is a high gloss shine. It has a slightly sticky texture that develops over time (because initially, it feels non-sticky). Citrus managed to hang on for about two hours but had disappeared entirely after two and a half hours.  Not drying, not moisturizing; it’s just kind of a so-so lipgloss.

By the by, am I the only one who likes the color in the tube to look like what it does on the lips? If I want a sheer lipgloss, I want it to look sheer and lightly tinted in the tube! If it’s going to be rich and opaque on, then I want it to look that way in the tube. Bobbi Brown is just one of many brands who’ve come out with products that look bold and opaque in the tube but are formulated specifically to be sheer.

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My Favorite Place to Spa: Burke Williams


My Favorite Place to Spa: Burke Williams

I’m not a person who relaxes easily or often. I have to schedule relaxation, and for me, it’s even better when I’m able to kill two birds with one stone by getting a massage. It’s a set time, both when and for how long, where I have no choice but to lay there, breathe deep and slow, and enjoy.

A year or so after I had moved back to the Bay Area after having attended college in southern California, I started looking for a good place to get a massage. Naturally, I used Yelp! to kick off the search. The first place I tried was Burke Williams (San Jose location, on Santana Row), and I had a Relaxation massage. It was amazing. The facilities are immaculate–clean, relaxing, well-done–and the therapist was equally good. That was some three or four years ago. Burke Williams is, unsurprisingly, one of the more expensive places to get a massage in the area, so I wasn’t willing to commit quite yet. I worked my way through five or six additional facilities, but no experience came close to how I felt about Burke Williams–so the next time I needed a massage, I went back to Burke Williams to see if it was as good as I remembered. It was.

What sets Burke Williams apart, for me, is the facilities. It is a full spa; it’s not a small facility where there are one or two massage rooms where you go in, strip down, and lay down–and then you pop back into daylight right away. Burke Williams has a general lounge, but then they have separate facilities for men and women that include jacuzzi, steam room, dry sauna, cool misting room, showers, locker rooms, and quiet rooms. In the women’s locker room, they have several stations for you to doll yourself back up–blow dryers, brushes, and the like. All of these amenities are for you to use before or after your service. Ultimately, these are the extras that bump up the price tag, and if you use them, you’ll get your money’s worth.

But… become a member, and the prices per service are very comparable to the rest of the Bay Area and you get the truly luxurious experience of a fully-equipped spa. This is what I ended up doing, and I spent nearly two years as a member of Burke Williams. Membership is $79 or $109 per month (the latter allows you to access the spa whenever you want, so not just before/after a service). When I signed up, you needed to commit for a year. The monthly fee is actually applied to your first service of either a massage or facial, and you’re allowed to rollover the payment once, so I usually went every month and a half to two months. As a member, you also get member pricing on any additional services (about 20-30% off), except waxing. If you’re not ready to become a member–like my fiance, who very much enjoys a massage but refused to become a member–Burke Williams typically has a coupon for one of their services every other month or so that brings the price near member price.

I didn’t use all their services, but these were the ones I have indulged in: Pure Relaxation Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, Spa Style Facial, and Spa Pedi. I’ve also used massage enhancements in aromatherapy, hot stones, and detox. I will say that detox made me feel like I was being prepared for a Thanksgiving feast when they rubbed in the Himalayan salt, so that was not my favorite! Aromatherapy and the hot stones are both nice enhancements, but I don’t feel any less/more relaxed, so they usually weren’t something extra I’d spring for unless it was a member special.


I’m a deep tissue massage kind of gal. That’s my thing. When I first started going, I was all about the Pure Relaxation, because I love the long, fluid, relaxing strokes, but ultimately, I have far too many knots in my neck and shoulders. The lovely therapists are Burke Williams are very educated and knowledgeable, and what I liked was everyone had their own style. I went through many, many therapists before finding the one I really clicked with, but I never had a bad massage there–each one was good or great. Many therapists will help show and explain to you the different modalities so you can determine what makes sense for you.

As a now veteran spa-goer when it comes to massage, let me give you one piece advice: NEVER be afraid to tell your therapist that the pressure is too much or too little. The massage is for you, and frankly, you are likely paying a fair amount, so you should get an enjoyable experience out of it! We all have our own tolerance, and some of us want to be right up against that line of good pain and relaxation while others want just to relax. Communicate with your therapist–and I swear, every therapist has always appreciated me being more vocal about what is good/bad pressure.

If you’re able to visit the Burke Williams Spa in San Jose (they have locations all over California), I highly, highly recommend Nova as a massage therapist. She is absolutely amazing. As I mentioned earlier, it took me awhile to find the right person, but Nova is excellent. She’s knowledgeable, educated, and she is all about communication. If you like deep tissue massages, make an appointment with her! I was devastated that by moving, I wouldn’t be able to see her regularly any more. Ahh, so good! I felt like she really took the time to understand my needs.

Ironically, what really inspired me to write-up my experience with Burke Williams was that it was as good in the beginning as it was in the end. After we finished the move, I called Burke Williams last week to cancel my membership, and it took about two minutes. And in those two minutes, they put the remaining credit I had (which was two months of member fees) onto a gift card and had it sent overnight via FedEx, and cancelled my membership. It was such a pleasant experience, and I really appreciated having the credits onto a gift card, so I can use them when I am able to make the trek to the spa but don’t have to worry about when!  Just to put it into context, when I called my cable/internet provider to cancel because they did not provide service in my new area, it took me an hour to cancel and they kept trying to convince me to stay!

Even the Tech Guy agrees…

Tech guy here!  I will have to concur with what the Christine-ator has to say about Burke Williams. The price is truly the one sticky issue and I could only indulge myself once in a while. I would generally need to view the receipt while standing in front of a bed so I could faint without cracking my skull.  Here are some guy tips for all the men who read Temptalia:

First, there’s total nudity allowed so keep your gaze towards the ceiling at all times. Don’t worry, they cushioned all the wall corners so if you run into one while you’re admiring the ceiling you won’t hurt yourself. If you can get off work early or go in the afternoon, you literally have the men’s area all to yourself. I rarely ran into anybody while attending the facility so I was left without permanent brain scarring due to unfortunate nudity.  They give you some sweet moccasins to walk around in, but apparently they think one size fits all because my feet were pushing the limits of their expandability.  To really get the full experience, make sure to take advantage of the spa, hot tub, and crazy cold water room. This room has a seat where you pull a chain and have a torrent of cold water land on top of you. You know, just in case you want to have a heart attack at an expensive spa. I wanted to use it once just to see my life flash before my eyes, but it wasn’t functioning at the time. Lastly, if you think massages are for wimps, then try a deep tissue massage. If you ever wondered what your spleen tastes like then this is a good way to find out because they can press so hard that your organs tend to jump into your mouth!

Bottom line:  Burke Williams Spa offers not just an excellent service but an excellent experience from the minute you walk in the door. You’ll never feel rushed or stressed.  It’s calming, inviting, and relaxing.  You can stay awhile and enjoy their spa facilities (love the sauna).  There are only a few places I really miss since moving, and this place is one of them.  (The other is our favorite sushi restaurant–Sen Dai Sushi in Milpitas.)

Disclaimer: Every single service at Burke Williams was paid for by me. I never volunteered information that I was a beauty blogger or that I had any intentions of writing about them on the blog (and as far as I know, nobody knew!). Only recently (as in, this past week) did I actually receive an email from their PR team about a Mother’s Day special–go figure it’s after I’ve moved!

Guerlain Quand Vient l’Ete (141) Rouge Automatique Lipstick

Guerlain Quand Vient l'Ete (141) Rouge Automatique Lipstick
Guerlain Quand Vient l’Ete (141) Rouge Automatique Lipstick

Guerlain Quand Vient l’Ete (141) Rouge Automatique Lipstick

Guerlain Quand Vient l’Ete (141) Rouge Automatique Lipstick ($35.00 for 0.12 oz.) is a coral-orange with soft tangerine shimmer. Benefit Saucy is similar but with more shimmer. Dior Versailles is pinker. Cle de Peau Leonardis is a touch lighter but very similar. MAC Crosswires is close, though it doesn’t have the shimmer. MAC Viva Glam Cyndi is darker, more vibrant.

The shade yields mostly opaque color coverage, but the color does bunch up somewhat in random places, so the coverage isn’t perfectly even.  It’s not as noticeable as Guet-Apens, though.  Quand Vient l’Ete had a soft, creamy consistency that glided across lips with ease and no tugging or pulling whatsoever.  There’s a healthy dosage of shimmer, enough to be noticeable but not enough to give it a frosted finish, plus a natural sheen.  When I tested out this shade for wear, it hung on for four hours, which is about average.  For more packaging photos, please see this post.