Showing posts with label Blush. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Blush. Show all posts

Friday, October 3, 2014

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette


The latest addition to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting line is the Ambient Lighting Blush Palette ($58 for 3 shades, each 0.116 oz/3.3g). It's a limited-edition palette with three of the Ambient Lighting Blushes in Luminous Flush (champagne rose), Incandescent Electra (cool peach, exclusive to the palette) and Mood Exposure (soft plum). I've been a huge fan of the Ambient Lighting Powders (palette review and Luminous Light review here) and Blushes (review on individual colors here). The addition of a travel-friendly blush palette is just pure genius (for me at least).

If you're new to the Ambient Lighing Blushes, they are multi-dimensional powders with swirls of pigmented color and highlighter. They are infused with what Hourglass calls "photoluminescent technology" which creates depth and dimension. Hourglass claims these give your face an "otherworldly glow" and I can't find any words to better describe their Ambient Lighting products. All of the powders are handmade so no two look alike.


I've been testing the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush Palette for the past couple of weeks and am really pleased with it. Two of the shades can be purchases individually which I already own, so while this is mostly a duplicate of what I have, I do find the packaging design and size of the palettes to be very user-friendly and perfect for travel. I almost always bring the highlighter palette with me on all trips. The compact is sleek and long so it fits easily into my travel bags.

The powders in the blush palette are identical in size to those in the highlighter palette. They are smaller compared to the blushes that you purchase individually. I've photographed them side by side for comparison purposes.


I've found the colors in the palette to look slightly lighter than the ones I own individually but they apply the same on the skin. In my experience, the Ambient Lighting Blushes are all very pigmented on my skin and show up just like blush with a couple exceptions. Dim Infusion and Etheral Glow are both very light and give a very slight hint of color on my medium/tan skin. If you are medium to dark, you may find these don't show up on you. In terms of application, all the other colors, including the shades in the Blush Palette show up very well on my skin. What I love about these is that they are soft but buildable. The blush color is very pigmented but the mix of the soft highlighter inside each shade gives the product a very beautiful glow. I do think these work best on skin that has a bit of moisture. If you have super dry skin or a very powdered face, you might find they don't show up as well. For me over foundation with powder on top these apply just fine. If you don't see any color you may want to add a bit of a sheer highlighter like Armani Fluid Sheers on the cheeks under these.

Comparisons of the individual blush shades in Luminous Light and Mood Exposure (they look different in the pans but swatch identical):


Swatches, on the face they are glowy and not frosty:



Close ups of each shade in the palette:




The Ambient Lighting Palette is bottom line love. After playing with this for a few weeks I've found it really versatile. The colors look good individually or with two of them layered (any combination works). All the colors look good with neutral pinks, nude, plum or peach lips. The blushes have enough color to bring life to the face, but are subtle enough to wear with a bold lip.

If you've been waiting and thinking about the blushes I think the palette is definitely something worth splurging on. Product size differences aside, the palette retails for $58 while three individual blushes at $35 each will cost you $100+. If you already own Luminous Flush and Mood Exposure, then I don't think this is something that falls into the "need" category, however I do think it's a must-have for me. The Ambient Lighting Blushes are compact in size already so they don't take up a lot of room in your makeup bag. I do really like the convenience and packaging of the Hourglass palettes and Incandescent Electra is one of the prettiest light peaches I've ever seen.

The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette is currently listed as limited-edition for this fall/holiday. You can find it now at Sephora and Hourglasscosmetics.com. It will also be available later this month at Barneys New York, Bergdorf Goodman, Net-A-Porter, Space NK.

The blush palette was provided courtesy of Hourglass for review consideration.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Charlotte Tilbury Beauty - Preview of The Beauty Look Book Picks


Beauty fans will be thrilled to know that Charlotte Tilbury's beauty line has finally launched in the US. The range has launched online first at CharlotteTilbury.com, Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman, Net-A-Porter and BeautyLish starting September 2nd. Later this fall, the line will launch in select stores starting October 7th at Bergdorf Goodman in NYC and October 10th at Nordstrom at The Grove in Los Angeles. Launch events will also be hosted with Nordstrom in other cities including Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Orange County, Washington D.C. and Las Vegas through Spring 2015.

I fell head over heels in love with the Filmstar Killer Cheekbones Set which was available at Nordstrom during the Anniversary Sale. I couldn't wait for the line to launch in the US so I decided order a few of her look sets from the UK site along with some other items. I'll have detailed reviews on all the items, but many of you have asked for a preview post wanting to know what I ordered and whether I thought the sets were worth it (versus buying items individually).

I did quite a bit of research when trying to decide what to buy. Some of the lipsticks and lip glosses looked extremely brown in stock photos so I relied heavily on blog swatches to help me pick out colors. I went with two of the sets simply because I found it easier to purchase an entire look rather than mix and match items. There are definitely duplicates in some of the sets with items such as mascara, makeup bag and some liners. (I gifted my extra makeup bag and mascara to another beauty friend.)

I ordered my items from the UK site and Paypal converted Pounds to Dollars. I think the prices I paid were slightly higher in the UK versus US prices, current US retail prices listed below. (Note all items are available individually as well).
_____________________________


The Rock Chick Set ($225) includes:


_____________________________

The Uptown Girl Set ($225) includes:


_____________________________

Wonderglow Instant Soft-Focus Beauty Flash ($52)
Beach Sticks Bronze and Blush in Ibiza and Moonbeach (not yet available in the US)


There is a lot to digest with her line - it all looks so overwhelmingly good. I'll have reviews posted in the next week by category: face, eyes and lips with thoughts and swatches. I'm still happy I ordered the sets although you don't really save all that much buying a set versus individual items. I normally like to pick out items individually rather than stick to one preset look, but the color combinations are really good and easy to use for ideas. Even though I look nothing like the model used for each look, I found the looks helpful to see how soft or dramatic items would look on another face.

I've had really good experiences so far. I'm relieved since I spent a small fortune and bought everything sight unseen. More thoughts soon.

You can find Charlotte Tilbury in the US online at CharlotteTilbury.comNordstromBergdorf GoodmanNet-A-Porter and BeautyLish.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Tom Ford Contouring Cheek Color Duos in Softcore and Stroked


Tom Ford Contouring Cheek Color Duos ($77 for .70 oz/29 g) are new for fall and come in two shades: Softcore is the cool-toned option with a pale white pink highlighter and medium to deep terracotta pink while Stroked is the warm-toned duo with a soft peachy champagne highlighter and a medium bronzed coral. Both duos have blush/contour shades that are on the shimmery side with highlighters that have high shimmer.

Both duos sold out very quickly in stores and also online when they first launched. It seemed to be a blink and you might miss them kind of thing. Keep checking online because many retailers have restocked. I bought mine from Saks a little over a week ago. You can also find them online at Tom Ford, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and Selfridges.


After testing these for over a week, I prefer these as a blush and highlighter duo rather than as a contouring set. The shimmer and color make both duos them more blush-like. Color-wise I adore Stroked (the warm one) and have lukewarm feelings about Softcore (the cool one). I wish the names didn't both start with a letter "s" though because I often get them mixed up.

____________________________

Stroked is easy to wear (for me). The shimmer factor is on the medium/high side but it blends easily onto the skin and the color warms up the complexion. I found the blush color to be very unique with a mix of copper and bronze intertwined with the peachy coral base. The blush is very pigmented so I prefer to use a soft skunk brush to apply the color so I can build it up. The highlighter is also intense which I find best applied with a fluffy brush.


____________________________

Softcore is very difficult for me to wear. It is cool-toned and cooler tones tend to clash with my warmer olive skin. The blush is very dark and the rich pigment make it very easy to overdo (even with a light hand) resulting in a sunburned or punched look (yes it makes me look like someone punched me in the cheeks). The highlighter is almost white on my skin and enhances pores if I swipe it one too many times and ends up looking too sharp and frosted. The quality and pigment are still very good, but the colors only work if I use an ultra light hand.


_________________________

Swatches and comparisons: left Softcore, right Stroked




Comparisons to:



The blush side of the Stroked Duo is a mix between Love Lust, Ravish and Savage. If you swirled all three colors together, you would get something very similar to Stroked.

Bottom line I love Stroked. It's really flattering and brightens the face. I was worried it would be entirely orange based on some swatches I had seen online. I prefer applying with a lighter hand but even with a regular one, I don't find it turns orangey at all on my skin.

Softcore is hit or miss, for me it's been mostly a miss. I was able to get it to work on me a couple times, but most of the times I tried it, I found it looked too dark/harsh and too cool-toned. I ended up having to redo my makeup entirely, but I'm still determined to try and make it work. It looks better if I use only the blush side on the face and save the highlighter for the eyes. Still for cheeks, I need something that is easy to use, naturally flattering, easy to build - not something I need to be super careful with.

The Contouring Cheek Color Duos retail for $77 each. Both are limited-edition. They are online now at Saks, Tom Ford, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus and Selfridges.

Did you check out the Cheek Duos or purchase any of them? What did you think? Did they work for your skin tone?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Urban Decay Naked Flushed Palettes - Native and Streak


Earlier in the spring, Urban Decay released some new shades of their Naked Flushed Palettes ($30 each for 14g/0.49 oz). These are well-packaged face trio compacts with a bronzer, highlighter and blush. I'm a huge fan of their Naked Eyeshadow Palettes (#3 is my fav) and thought these had a lot of promise. I purchased Native (pink) and Streak (peach) in store at Sephora after reading an overwhelming number of rave reviews (4.5 stars out of 5 average rating with 600+ reviews).  
  • Native is a pink option with a medium-dark bronzer with a soft shimmer, a opal pinkish champagne highlighter and a matte pink blush
  • Streak is a warmer option with a lighter shimmery bronzer, a pale peachy shimmer highlighter and a stunning coral matte blush 
Swatching them in store on my hands revealed a soft well pigmented texture that seemed easy to blend. Testing at home with a variety of brushes has me less than pleased. I purchased these late May/early June and have been desperately trying to make these work for me.

The texture is finely milled and soft which is easy to pick up with brushes but the bronzer and blush are both very powdery resulting in a lot of debris/powder kick-up. They don't show up well on lightly powdered skin. Right over foundation the color picks up more but the colors look muddy and look like they just sit on top of the skin. The highlighters are creamier in texture (although they are powders) and blends easily but the frost factor highlights imperfections and after softly applying on the cheeks, I suddenly have large visible pores. I've tried both with a large variety of brushes, cream highlighters, foundations, dewy cheek products as a base even. With the right amount of creamy base underneath I can get the bronzer and blush to apply ok sometimes (I like Tom Ford Fire Lust and Armani Fluid Sheer #3 or #10 the best), but I cannot wear the highlighter on the cheeks at all. That being said, the highlighters are pretty on the eyes. Half of the times I've applied these I ended up taking them off immediately after putting them on the face.

Photos and swatches:


Swatches side by side:


Closeups of each palette, up first is Native:




Streak




One last view, Streak (left) and Native (right):


I'm overall disappointed. I've tried numerous times to make these work, and with extra tweaking I can only make them work 1/2 the time. They look so beautiful in the compacts and when swatched on the hands or arms. On the face the pigment and texture don't quite translate the same. Given the overwhelming number of rave reviews, I suspect I'm in the minority with my thoughts. I've mentioned in recent posts I've had skin issues and breakouts - my skin issues aren't on the cheek area in case you're wondering if it's skin problems causing the issue in application. For additional reference, Temptalia has detailed thoughts on Native, Streak and Strip, my experiences are similar to hers.

Based on the price, packaging and convenience, if you're at a Sephora or Urban Decay counter I think you should still give these a try. If there are clean brushes available, ask a makeup artist or sales associate to apply it on you.

If you've tried these, I'd love to hear your thoughts. If you have these which shade do you have and who do you apply them?

The Urban Decay Naked Flushed Palettes retail for $30 each. I found mine at Sephora. They come in four options, Naked, Native, Streak and Strip.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Chanel Innocence #160 Powder Blush


Chanel Innocence #160 Powder Blush ($45 for 6g/0.21 oz) is new for fall this year. It's a lovely delicate pink with a slight hint of shimmer. On the cheeks it's a subtle slightly dusty rose pink. It shows up well with a few swipes of layering. The one released in the US is the regular soft finely milled powder US formula (not baked). I found it extremely similar to Rose Ecrin #68 both in the pan and on the face. The difference is slight. Rose Ecrin #68 is slightly dustier in color with more mauve. Innocence #160 is a bit brighter in color with more warmth. I tested them on the cheeks, one on each side of the face and you can definitely tell the difference once they are both on the skin while on the arms or fingers the difference is slight.

Some close ups and swatches, in the pan you can see shimmers, when swatched on the face it applies more matte with a soft satiny glow:





Swatch comparisons: to Chanel Rose Ecrin, Chanel Rose Initiale, MAC Cheeky Bugger, Edward Bess Filled with Desire, Diorblush My Lady Cannage Palette 002:


Thumbs up. Chanel Innocence is a lovely soft delicate pink that's not too light. It's a feminine pink that is lovely for every day wear and might just be my favorite item from the fall collection. Chanel Innocence is available at all Chanel counters now. Online at Nordstrom, Saks, Neiman Marcus and Chanel.com.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Chanel Collection États Poétiques | Fall 2014 Picks


Chanel Collection États Poétiques for Fall 2014 has arrived online and in stores. The ordered the nail polishes online and then checked out the entire collection in stores last week. The items I picked out include:

I'll be reviewing the items in the next few days, I have the nail polishes swatched already and will be uploading pics as soon as I can :)



Did you pick up anything from the Fall collection? What are your thoughts?

Saturday, June 14, 2014

MAC Sharon and Kelly Osbourne Mineralize Skinfinish Duos and Satin Blushes


I have a few more additions to share from the MAC Sharon and Kelly Osbourne Collections. There are two new Mineralize Skinfinish Duos in Refresh/Sharon and Jolly Good/Kelly ($33 each, limited-edition). Each collection also features a Satin Blush in Peaches & Cream/Sharon and Cheeky Bugger/Kelly ($22 each, limited-edition). If you're contemplating any of these, act fast. Both of the blushes sold out online super quickly. My sweet husband bought the Satin Blushes for me from a MAC store the day the collection launched in stores. The Mineralize Skinfinish Duos are easier to find but are going fast online. I found the cheek items to be really pretty and naturally flattering to complement bolder eyes/lips.

Sharon's collection is warmer in tone while Kelly's is cooler and lighter. I found they both worked for my olive medium skin, I have a slight preference for the items from Sharon's collection. My thoughts on each item for the cheeks:
  • Refresh Mineralize Skinfinish Duo has a satiny warm bronze and a shimmering champagne peachy pink. The pigment on this one is really good and it shows up well on the skin by itself.
  • Jolly Good Mineralize Skinfinish Duo is more satiny in texture. It has a shimmery finish but not as frosty or shimmery as other MSFs. The color is on the nude side so on my skin it is very sheer similar to Hourglass Ambient Lighting powders. If you're in want of a more contrasted highlighter you may not like this one.
  • Peaches & Cream is a rose pink satiny texture blush. It has a bit of shimmer in it but on the cheeks it isn't overly frosty. Even though it has the word "peaches" in the name, it's not really peachy or warm, it's definitely more rose.
  • Cheeky Bugger is a cool toned lighter pink. It's also a satin finish. On me it shows up even though it's pale in the pan. It gives a natural pink glow.
Refresh/Sharon

Jolly Good/Kelly

Peaches & Cream/Sharon

Jolly Good/Kelly

Here they are swatched on my Chanel B20/30 arm:


Close ups of the Blushes side by side:




Close ups of the Mineralize Skinfinish Duos side by side:




Overall thumbs up. The pigment and texture of these are really good and easy to apply. I like how the Mineralize Skinfinish Duos look naturally flattering on the skin. The Jolly Good/Kelly MSF duo is sheerer and is good as a subtle softening powder. Refresh/Sharon MSF Duo is better in color and pigment to show up on its own. Both Peaches & Cream and Cheeky Bugger blushes are stunning and I wish they hadn't sold out so quickly but I am happy that I was able to get them. If you can get to a counter or store soon, I highly recommend it. They are both worth the extra work to track down.

Sharon's Refresh Mineralize Skinfinish Duo is still available online at Nordstrom, Macy's and Bloomingdales.

Kelly's Jolly Good Mineralize Skinfinish Duo is available online at Nordstrom.

Both blushes Sharon's Peaches & Cream and Kelly's Cheeky Bugger have sold out online but you may still be able to track them down in stores and counters.




 

design + development by fabulous k | COPYRIGHT © 2009-2014 THE BEAUTY LOOK BOOK