Saturday, August 27, 2016

Edward Bess Deep Shine Lip Gloss


Edward Bess's cosmetic line is among my favorites and it has been for many years. I discovered his brand while browsing through a Bergdorf Goodman catalog and there was a page that showed his Lip Wardrobe which was a collection of his lipsticks and glosses at the time packaged in a beautiful sleek black box. It looked so clean and modern and there were some pinks and nudes that looked amazing. I called up the store to order some sight unseen as a quick google search showed that the store in NYC was the only place to buy them. To this day the whole experience of ordering them has left an impression on me. I still remember how amazing, professional and helpful the girls were over the phone. I told them that I saw his lipsticks in the Bergdorfs catalog but didn't know what colors to pick and asked if they could recommend 3 to 4 items for me to order sight unseen. Just for fun, you can see my first order in this post here. As a nice follow up they sent a card in the mail with their entire line swatched on a card as a reference for me since I wasn't able to see the entire line in person. The whole experience left such an impression and that was the start of my love affair with Edward Bess's line. I didn't meet him in person until years later when he launched his line at Neiman Marcus Beverly Hills but we clicked instantly. This past summer I was thrilled to finally see his counter in person at Bergdorf Goodman which was truly the highlight of my trip. I feel incredibly lucky to have had lunch with him at one of his favorite cafes in the city. Quick peek of us taking selfies here.

I have a review of all the colors in his Deep Shine Lip Gloss ($32 each for.2 fl oz/5.9 ml). It took me a while to post this because a few of his glosses had been sold out for a few weeks and I had used up some of his colors so did not have them all to swatch. I know many of you may not be able to get to a counter easily to see these in person I wanted to create a comprehensive post as a reference for those who want to order sight unseen. At this time you can find his lip gloss at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Net-A-Porter and Edward Bess. There are some stores and boutiques internationally that carry his line as well, check his website for the full updated list.

First a look at his counter in NYC:




There are eight shades of Deep Shine Lip Gloss at the moment. They are all non-shimmers and are fig scented. They have sheer to medium finish in terms of pigment and look very natural on the lips. The texture is slightly thick and sticky which may sound unappealing but they feel really nice on the lips and the consistency makes it so these stay put on the lips. You can layer for more color but overall finish is medium-sheer. I personally like most of these layered on top of his lipsticks or a liner because they add the best kind of shine and sheen to enhance a lipstick color. I've swatched them on bare lips though so you can see how the color looks by themselves. What I like best about the lighter colors is that they are smooth and aren't patchy - many pale colors look patchy on my bare lips and need liner or lipstick to make them work. All of these colors work for me.


Colors shown from top to bottom include:
  • Nude Whisper is a pale flesh-toned light nude
  • Lover's Desire is a peachy pink
  • Stolen Kiss is a pale pink
  • French Lace is a medium cool toned pink
  • Nude Satin is a mauvey nude pink
  • First Kiss is a bright cool pink
  • Wild Passion is a sheer plum
  • Amor is a sheer bright red
My personal favorites are Nude Satin (best color ever), First Kiss (prettiest pink), French Lace (best neutral pink) and Amor (best red ever, perfect for neutral lip lovers who want to wear red but are afraid to).

A closer look at the applicators, they have an angled sponge tip:


All eight colors will give you a you but better look for the lips. They are natural and work well to enhance your natural beauty without looking overdone or too heavy.

Swatched heavily on my arm, for reference you can see this cute video of the colors live swatched sheer on Edward's arm on Instagram @edwardbess:


Swatched on bare lips (as always there is no liner, no foundation and no concealer on the lips to prep), you can also see First Kiss layered over a Tom Ford lipstick in this post here:

 

Above shown left to right: Nude Whisper, Stolen Kiss, Lover's Desire, Amor, Wild Passion, French Lace, First Kiss and Nude Satin

Bottom line I love them all and I highly recommend. I almost always have at least one in my purse or makeup bag. I probably wear Lover's Desire and Nude Satin the most. If you don't like sticky at all these may be a bit too thick for your taste. Even though some of the colors are on the sheer side, I find that they have enough pigment to wear on their own. His lipliner in Natural is a must and works with a wide range of colors if you need a suggestion for something to wear underneath. The fig scent is to die for. I've been working on swatching his lipsticks too (another love). Those were also sold out at a number of places for a few weeks but just popped up back in stock online. Keep in mind that September is a big month for beauty events so you may want to wait a few weeks to splurge.

You can find Edward Bess's Deep Shine Lipgloss at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Net-A-Porter and Edward Bess. Follow Edward Bess on Instagram @edwardbess for fun videos and some tutorials.

Most colors gifted by Edward Bess in the past. For this post, Nude Whisper, Stolen Kiss and French Lace repurchased by me.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops


Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops ($42 each for 15 ml/0.5 fl oz, made in Italy) are super pigmented liquid highlighter and bronzer drops that you can use in a wide range of ways. They have been extremely popular and sold out for months - it appears they sold out almost instantly, the Cover FX team sent me samples back in July and by the time my package arrived, all the colors except the bronzers were sold out. They just restocked them on coverfx.com and according to their Instagram plan to restock them as of Friday morning 8/26 are back online Sephora.com today. I've spotted the bronzer shades in store at a few Sephora stores near me but all the shimmery colors have been sold out for ages. In case you have had these on your radar I wanted to give you a heads up to check Sephora.com this afternoon so you don't miss out. I know everyone's preference for shimmer with highlighters is different but I will say right now that my quick take is these live up to the hype and are among the best I've tried. I think you need at least one in your life.


There are four highlighters and two bronzers (Sunset and Sunkissed featured in my summer bronzer edit). If you've seen these featured online Instagram, blogs or YouTube channels you may have been a bit concerned that the highlighters have that super high-frost overly dramatic shimmer effect. I love a good shimmer but if you're a conservative makeup like me you find that some shimmers are really just too much for everyday wear. They look good on camera or for inspirational makeup looks but for normal everyday regular life I'm not sure how many of us really wear that much shimmer.

The Cover FX Enhancer Drops are extremely pigmented and can give a very intense highlight but what I love about them is that you easily sheer it out for a soft luminous glow. They are very fluid which makes a tiny bit easy to blend. I like these on the eyes, dabbed on cheekbones and especially mixed in with foundation. Mixing these in with foundation doesn't change the foundation formula too much which is nice. Sometimes I like my foundation formulas just the way they are I just want to add a bit of shimmer or glow. Since the formula is liquid and lightweight it won't add any emollient texture like Armani Fluid Sheers, Estee Edit Flash Illuminators or Estee Edit Beam Team.

They come with a dropper. I'm usually not a fan of droppers for makeup because it just gets messy, but they are easy to use and dispense just the right amount of product.

I tried each color mixed in with my foundations (including the bronzers). Two drops is all I needed to add a glow. My two favorite shades are in the middle which include Moonlight and Sunlight - they matched my skintone the closest so the colors didn't change the color of my foundation too much. The others were too light or dark to mix in with foundation for all over the face, so those were best used as a highlight on eyes or cheeks or to bronze the cheeks.

Onto the colors, they come packaged in a sturdy glass vial. The colors of the packaging mimic the actual color which is nice so you can see at a glance what color you're grabbing:

Colors left to right:
  • Celestial is a pale pearly white
  • Moonlight is a champagne silver
  • Sunlight is a warmer champagne with gold tones
  • Candlelight is a shimmering bronze
  • Sunkissed is a non-shimmer neutral light bronze
  • Sunset is a non-shimmer medium brown

Because the shimmer is very intense, almost foiled-like when you swatch, these will look different in every swatch photo you see depending on how the light hits the product. Here they are swatched a few different ways:


Blended:


Heavy in sunlight:


Bottom line definitely worth checking out. My top three are Moonlight, Sunlight and Sunkissed. I like that they are easy to mix in with foundation or apply on top of your makeup. I really like them on the eyes for an all over wash that's easy and effortless. Sunkissed is a great color to add some life to the face - for medium-skinned girls, think of it as a very natural contour to add some color to your face without having that contour look. If you're one who loves shimmer you will really like these. There's no detectable scent, they dry to a satiny finish, last all day long, great for normal to oily skin and are easy to sheer out. If you're super conservative with shimmers and need something a lot softer or with a dewy finish I'd recommend you opt for the Estee Edit Flash Illuminators, Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow or Tom Ford Skin Illuminator in Fire Lust for a more subtle glow.

Update: As of Friday 8/26 these are back online at Sephora! Some still available online at Cover FX. Have you tried these? What did you think? Have you tried the Custom Infusion Drops or Custom Cover Drops - they seem to be really popular as well but I'm always nervous about testing new things on my face - if you've tested them let me know what you thought! I've tried a couple Cover FX foundations before and they were too heavy for my skin, but given the success I've had with the liquid highlighters, perhaps the drop foundation will be better?

Custom Enhancer Drops provided courtesy of Cover FX for review consideration.


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dior Skyline Collection for Fall 2016


The Dior Skyline Collection for Fall 2016 is the first fall collection I'm reviewing this year. A lot of you have been e-mailing me and messaging me about fall beauty which has just started to arrive at counters. The most highly requested item for review has been the Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer in this collection and I will say right up front go buy it now - Dior never disappoints with highlighters and they give a very pretty glow. The Dior team has also created a special promo code for Beauty Look Book readers so if you see any items that catch your eye, scroll down to the end of this post for details.

The items from fall that I have to review:
Up first are the standouts in my opinion which include the Diorblush Light and Contour Sticks and Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer. I already reviewed and swatched the contour sticks but I will repost photos for reference. As a quick recap, the Diorblush Light and Contour sticks are natural looking contour creams that are very easy to use and that won't give you a harsh look. They blend nicely along the cheeks and for a contour-dummy like myself, they're impossible to overdo.


A closer look at the contour sticks:




The Diorskin Nude Air Luminzer 001 for fall is absolutely stunning. It comes with an embossed design on the surface. This is one of those shades that will look different on everyone. Fair skin-toned beauty lovers will find this almost peachy while deeper skintones will find this more pale. On my medium skintone I find it to be a champagne gold with slight peachy tones. It's finely milled, blends in with the skin flawlessly, doesn't emphasize pores, stays put all day and has the prettiest sheen. The highlighter comes with a tiny kabuki brush which is well made but for me on the small side so I find it best for touch ups or on-the-go rather than for regular application.


Left is swatched heavily, right is blended out. You can blend or sheer out the color more if you prefer a more diffused glow. It's absolutely perfect!


Swatch comparisons below show that the Nude Air Glowing Gardens 002 from spring is a tiny bit lighter than the Nude Air Luminizer for Fall 2016. On my face they are almost identical, I put one on each side of my face and they looked pretty close. Photos of course cannot do the shimmers or texture justice but I hope these help show the difference. And yes, even if you already own the spring versions, I think the one for fall is still a must.


Up next are the two Skyline Eyeshadow Palettes. These also come with a stunning embossed surface. Texture is similar to that of the highlighter - they're powders with a slightly creamy feel. Pigment is medium but buildable and the texture melds in with the skin so they don't look powdery. If you apply them with a slightly damp brush the color can be intensified.

Capital of Light has a mix of shimmery and satiny shades including a gorgeous grey taupe, pale ivory white shimmer, satiny baby pink, shimmering tan and deep violet plum. The mix of colors creates a pretty smokey plum eye.

Parisian Sky has all shimmery shades. This one is better suited for an everyday kind of look. The colors include a shimmering tan, light sand shimmer, pale blue shimmer, silvery blue sparkle and deep chocolate shimmer. The blues give a sheer wash on the eyes and brighten the entire eye area when layered with the sand and beige colors. As one who rarely wears blue colors on the eyes, I found these surprisingly wearable.



Next up are two lip colors for the fall collection which is the Addict Hydra-Gel Core Mirror Shine Lipsticks ($35 each). There are a few repromoted colors like Incognito 316 which is a classic neutral pink that pulls cool on my skintone. There is one new limited-edition color called Sophisticated 927 which is a cool-toned plum with a silvery sheen. These have a smooth sheer to medium coverage and glossy shine. If you're one who likes glossy finish lipsticks but want something to give visible coverage these are it. They have more coverage than the Rouge Dior Baumes but have that same glossy finish. These have a semi-thick almost gel-like feel which makes the pigment adhere well to the lips. Adding a liner of course will help extend the wear but they feel very comfortable on and fade nicely. As far as I can tell there is no detectable scent.


I applied these on the arm with a lip brush because these are the types of lip colors that don't show up well on arm swatches straight from the tube, but do on the lips:


Below, applied straight from the tube on bare lips:


Last but not least are the Dior Vernis nail polishes in Minimal and Skyline. Both look very standard in the bottles and borderline boring. I will say at first glance I thought they looked a bit unimpressive but Dior polishes rarely disappoint. In my opinion, out of all the luxury brands that have reformulated their nail polishes over the years, the Dior revamp has been the best. Formula has always been top notch with a smooth, glossy flawless finish. They improved the brush by rounding the tips so application is really easy. Minimal is a perfect creamy beige peachy nude. Good nudes can be hard to find and this one brightens the hands without looking too pale. Skyline is a gorgeous chocolate cream, also not the most unique color but it has the perfect mix of brown and vamp to give the hands a perfectly polished look.

A lot of you have asked for nail comparisons - I'm fresh out of nail wheels so I will post comparisons in a separate post as soon as I get them in the mail. I will say right now though that Minimal is almost an exact dupe for Chanel's discontinued Secret (the Dior is a bit brighter and has smoother/better coverage) and by comparison Chanel's discontinued Emprise is a lot peachier and darker.


Two coats in sunlight:



Two coats of Skyline:




Bottom line gorgeous. Top three stand outs to me are the Diorskin Nude Air Luminzer 001 and Dior Vernis in Skyline and Minimal. The Addict Hydra-Gel Core Mirror Shine Lipsticks comes in close fourth for formula - right now I'm still in the summer state of mind but I think Sophisticated is perfect for fall. Quality-wise everything is excellent. Pigment on everything is rich and visible on the skin but easy to blend and layer for those who like a natural refined beauty look. If you buy just one item I would say go for the highlighter unless you already have a lot and don't feel the need for one more in which case I would say opt for the Minimal nail polish. It's a great everyday neutral that will give the hands a clean polished look.

Dior is offering an exclusive promo for Beauty Look Book readers. Dior.com usually offers complimentary samples with any online order but starting today through the end of the month they are giving my readers extra deluxe samples. With any $100+ purchase using code BEAUTYLB at Dior.com you will get some extra deluxe minis including a 5 ml Miss Dior Absolutely Blooming fragrance, mini Hydralife Sleeping Mask packette and mini Diorshow Maximizer 3D. Code is valid today through 8/31/2016, while supplies last (U.S. site only).


You can find the Dior Skyline Collection for fall available now online at Dior.com and at all Dior counters. All the items are limited-edition. Have you checked out the fall pieces yet? What did you think? If you haven't, what's on your wishlist?

Skyline Collection provided courtesy of Dior for review consideration. Many thanks to Dior for providing my readers with a special promo code!


Monday, August 22, 2016

MAC Viva Glam Ariana Grande II


I'm thrilled to be able to share a sneak preview of the next MAC Viva Glam collection with the Viva Glam Ariana Grande 2 Lipstick ($17) and Lipglass ($16). Both will launch next month online and in stores on September 8th. While most Viva Glam collections have a matching lipstick and lipgloss, this launch, similar to the first MAC x Ariana Grande collaboration has contrasting shades.

The Viva Glam Ariana Grande 2 Lipstick is a matte formula and is a medium-bright cool-toned orchid pink. Viva Glam Ariana Grande 2 Lipglass has a tiny bit of shimmer and is a neutral-cool mauve pink nude. I of course am 100% obsessed with the mauvey-nude color of the lipglass. If you're looking for a lipstick version to layer the gloss with, the closest I've found is Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution in Very Victoria (reviewed here). I thought I could find a MAC lipstick version - it's possible there is one, but the neutrals in that color range that I own are either deeper or warmer in color (ie Velvet Teddy, Brave, So Select etc).


More photos, swatches and comparisons below:



As always, lip products swatched on bare lips, foundation shade is Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation in Y315:


Swatches and comparisons:


Swatch comparison Set 1:


Swatch comparison Set 2:


The lipstick of course is brighter and bolder than what I would wear for everyday but still fun. Considering it's very cool-toned I find it's not too cool on my olive complexion (although still very bright). I'm in love with the lipglass though - it's the perfect everyday mauvey neutral that I think will look good on every skintone.

Both will be available online and in stores on September 8th. At maccosmetics.com and other MAC counters. They are limited-edition.

Have you seen these yet? If not what do you think?

Press samples of the MAC Viva Glam Ariana Grande 2 provided courtesy of MAC for review consideration.

 

design + development by fabulous k | COPYRIGHT © 2009-2016 THE BEAUTY LOOK BOOK