Showing posts with label Highlighter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Highlighter. Show all posts

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Clé de Peau Beauté Luminizing Face Enhancers in #13 Sand Beige and #14 Delicate Pink


One of the things I love about blogging is connecting with readers who are even more passionate about beauty, cosmetics and fragrances than I am. I've learned so much from others who have taken time out of their day to write me about their latest discoveries and loves. Clé de Peau Beauté is one brand that gets frequently mentioned in my inbox. I've avoided most of the items from the brand due to the high price points but after so many raves, I couldn't help but finally check out the Luminizing Face Enhancers ($95 each for the compact+case, or $55 for just the refills). The Luminizing Face Enhancers are powder highlighters that come in a refillable prism-like covered gold mirrored case. There are currently four shades available in a pale white, silvery pink, gold and peachy-bronze. The Raeviewer has a comprehensive review of all four shades and she has them featured in a number of her videos. I highly recommend you check them out.

I picked out #13 Sand Beige and #14 Delicate Pink at Neiman Marcus. The Luminizing Face Enhancers are finely milled super soft pressed powders each containing multiple shades of shimmer pressed together in a jewel-like pattern. It's difficult to tell exactly how many different shades there are per compact, but there are at least four different colors pressed together. These come with a  sheer veil of glitter overspray (which I'm not fond of) but once you dust it off you get a luminous powder underneath. Once applied on the skin the shimmer is visible but it provides a natural glow. I've applied on the cheeks, temples and eyes. These blend in with the skin extremely well. Some powder products can look like they just sit on the skin, but the Clé de Peau Beauté highlighter melds quite well giving a natural look.

For me these are too shimmery to apply all over the face, but they are not frosty. I like them as traditional highlighters. I would say the shimmer factor is light-medium, somewhere in between the shimmer of Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders in Dim Light and Luminous Light, but with larger shimmer particles infused throughout.


#13 Sand Beige is my favorite. It's the darkest option which might look more like a bronzer on fairer skins (anything lighter than a Chanel B20). On my medium olive skin the Clé de Peau Beauté #13 is the perfect natural golden honey highlight. It's similar in color to Chanel Dentelle Precieuse not quite as shimmery as the Chanel (swatch comparisons below). The brush that comes in the compact is quite good, I've used it for touch ups, it's soft and dense and picks up product well. I do wish it was bigger, but for a compact brush, it's the best I've tried.




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#14 Delicate Pink is a cool-toned silvery pink on me. It's on the pale side which contrasts with my olive skin. I've seen it on fairer skin tones and it makes the entire face glow. For me it's something I use with a very light hand on the temples, on the nose, under brow bone (applied very softly) and it gives dimension to the face. It's difficult to capture the luminous shimmer in photographs but this one gives the skin a perfect glow.




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Swatches below. The flash and light emphasized the shimmer particles, in real life they are more subtle on the face, I swatched these with a heavy hand to show the color and shimmer. When applied normally, the shimmer isn't quite as pronounced as shown in the detail shot.



Comparisons to a few other highlighters:

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette with Radiant Light, Incandescent Light and Dim Light (review)
Chanel Dentelle Precieuse (reviewed here)


Second view with larger swatches up close:



Many have reported these Clé de Peau Beauté Luminizing Face Enhancers to be the best powder highlighters on the market. For me, there are so many different types of highlighters, I think finding the "best one" will depend on what you are looking for. Some highlighters offer intense shimmer or color like Mineralize Skinfinishes from MAC or Shimmer Bricks by Bobbi Brown. Others like Chanel Poudre Douce (discontinued shades like Rosee or Peche Tendre) or Dolce & Gabbana are highlighting powders that are designed to be use over the entire face. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders have a wide range of shimmer finishes and textures created for different skin tones to either warm up and bronze the skin, give a candlelit glow-from-within look, or create a diffused glow. There are also different skin types that look better with certain highlighters. There are highlighters that some will find enhance their pores, but on others that same product won't. Depending on your skin tone, if you're fair, certain shades will flatter you more than if you are darker. 

So for me, when someone asks me "what is the best powder highlighter?" My answer would be "it depends." I've been partial to Chanel, Edward Bess and Hourglass for highlighting powders. I've also always been a huge fan of MAC Mineralize Skinfinishes (even the frosty ones) for different looks.

To sum up my thoughts on the Clé de Peau Beauté Luminizing Face Enhancers, I do think they are amazing highlighters. If you're looking for a natural luminous glow that makes the skin radiate, adds dimension to the face, isn't frosty and doesn't emphasize pores, these fit the bill. They do come with a steep price tag which is why I'm reluctant to give a 100% glowing review. The quality of the product and packaging is there and I don't see any other product on the market that can provide that same glow. The texture is finely milled and it glides onto the skin blending in perfectly. The $55 price tag for the refills is reasonable for me, but the $95 price for the powder + compact is just too much for me no matter how good the product is.

That being said, I'm very happy with both and I know I will be using both regularly. These are highlighters you have to try in person to really see how good the glow is. Have you tried Clé de Peau Beauté Luminizing Face Enhancers? What did you think?



I bought mine from Neiman Marcus. They are also available at Nordstrom, SaksBarneys, and Bergdorf Goodman.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Killer Cheekbones Set | Nordstrom Anniversary Beauty Exclusive


I ordered the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Killer Cheekbones Set ($110) last week online. It's a duo that includes the Filmstar Bronze and Glow along with the Powder and Sculpt Brush. It's currently a Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive in the US and has been released as an early preview for the Charlotte Tilbury Beauty line. According to a Nordstrom Beauty Livechat I had earlier this morning, the entire line will launch online at Nordstrom.com around August 10th. Update on August 4th, per Charlotte Tilbury PR, the line will be available in the US around September 3rd.

On the nails - Aventure


The Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow (16 g/0.56 oz, made in Italy) comes in a luxurious rose gold colored compact. It has a warm bronze with a soft satiny shimmer glow. On my skin it acts like the perfect contouring powder. When it comes to contouring the face, I am a super minimalist. I have a roundish face without high cheekbones so any kind of contouring is me brushing on product in areas to create a fake one. I do like a good bronzer to sculpt the face and add warmth in a 3 shape motion around the edges of my face, but that's typically the most I'll do for contouring.

I find traditional matte/taupe contouring looks good in photos but in real life can look fake and too sharp on me (this is when artists do it on me or when I attempt it). The Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow however makes contouring goof-proof and super easy. The Sculpt/Bronzer side has enough warmth and color that it doesn't make the skin look ashy and also isn't too warm that it turns orangey. It has a soft satiny sheen that gives depth.


The Highlight/Glow side is a yellowish/gold pale champagne highlighter. Based on what it looks like in the pan and how it swatches on the arm, I was worried it would be overly frosty and sharp on my skin. On the face it glows. There is visible shimmer but on me it doesn't look frosted and it doesn't emphasize pores. Huge plus! If you have dewy skin, you may need to apply with a light hand. It's very pigmented and adheres well to the skin. I like to dip the brush into the highlighter and then tap it to dust off excess. On the skin it's a light golden color but not too yellow for my olive skin.


The Powder and Sculpt Brush is the full size version made of goat hair. It's a smaller brush than what I'm typically used to for the face but it's tapered for perfect contouring on the face. It's well-made and the bristles pick up the product and blend well, but I don't think it's a must-have since I have so many other brushes and find that a regular blush brush can do the same. I do like the way it's shaped for easy application. It places the product right along the cheeks in the right shape for a perfect contour.


Swatches, don't let the frost/shimmer deter you, they apply much softer on the face:



I pulled a few comparisons:


Edward Bess Daydream Bronzer (original version shown, newer version here)


Chanel Les Beiges Multi-Colour 02 (summer stripe version)


Overall a huge thumbs up. I had high expectations for this because of raves about Charlotte Tilbury's line but was worried it might be just another standard bronzer/highlighter/contour duo. After playing with this for several days I can say that I have found my perfect contouring duo. On my medium/tan skin it's not quite bronzer level, but I suspect on fair to medium skins it will be suitable as a contour or bronzer depending how you apply and how much you layer on.

I love the soft silky texture of the powder. Brushes pick up just the right amount of product so you don't have to swirl the brush in the pan a lot. It's powdery but not too powdery. It blends very smoothly on the face and layers nicely. It's on par with Edward Bess Daydream Bronzer (my holy grail) in the sense that it's impossible to mess up because it's super easy to apply and it's very flattering on the skin.


I am really pleased with the set even though it seemed a bit pricey. However you do get a full sized bronzer-highlighter duo and the brush is the full size version that is well made. It's a very high quality set that makes the price tag worth it for me. If you have a lot of brushes you may want to wait for the entire line to launch in August and just get the Filmstar Bronze and Glow. That being said the brush does make contouring easy for those who aren't good at contouring (like myself). Even though this is designed for the face, I've found it wears well on the eyes as well.

Many have asked whether I think the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Killer Cheekbones Set or Chanel Dentelle Precieuse powder is the better buy. I can't choose between them, they are both phenomenal products, my thoughts:
  • The Chanel powder is limited-edition and gives a more glowy finish with a pinkish, peach and bronze champagne glow on me. For my skintone it's definitely a highlighter while fair skinned readers have commented it appears darker and more bronzey on their skins.
  • The items in the Charlotte Tilbury will both be available for purchase in the US at a later date when the line officially launches. It's also more of a contouring duo rather than a highlighter. The bronze/sculpt powder is beautifully warm and satiny with a natural glow, but you can probably skip the brush if you already own a good detail brush.
If you can get both eventually but only want to purchase one now, I would recommend getting the Chanel since it's limited-edition and I've found there's nothing really like it. If you don't need a contouring brush then I'd say wait for the line to launch later this fall, skip the brush and just opt for the Bronzer/Highlighter duo.
The Filmstar Killer Cheekbones Set is currently a Nordstrom Anniversary Beauty Exclusive and retails for $110. Online it looks like it's on backorder. I can't wait until the entire Charlotte Tilbury line launches in the US later this fall.

Have you tried this Filmstar Killer Cheekbones set or anything else from Charlotte Tilbury? What were your thoughts?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Chanel Dentelle Précieuse Illuminating Face Powder - Nordstrom Anniversary Beauty Exclusive


This year's Nordstrom Anniversary Beauty Exclusive for Chanel is the stunning Dentelle Précieuse Illuminating Face Powder ($80 for 6 g/0.21 oz, made in Italy, limited-edition). It comes with an exquisite embossed lace detail. The powder is a gorgeous mix of beige, rose, and champagne. On the skin it has the prettiest beige glow with a hints of pink, champagne and bronze mixed in. At a glance it seems like it's just another pretty beige highlighter with an expensive price tag. While you can get a similar effect with other illuminating powders, I do believe the mix of shimmers in Dentelle Précieuse gives it a truly amazing effect on the face. It gives the perfect glow from within that isn't too subtle and isn't too frosty. The mix of pink and bronze in the powder give the face a bit of color so it's not just your standard beige frost.

It comes with a black soft pouch that holds both the powder compact and a small angled brush:

On the nails, Chanel Tapage

The color is difficult to capture in swatches but I found the photos on Color Me Loud and Indigo Kir Royale both demonstrate it's complexity with swatches using different pressures in application. It also shows how it gives more color to fair skintones, while it acts as a highlighter for medium to darker skin. Here are a few photos at different angles to show how the light reflects on the shimmer. On my medium/olive Chanel B30 skin this is clearly a highlighter.





Here are a few comparisons to other highlighters, I have two sets to show you. On screen the effect is very similar between highlighters so I'll share my thoughts on the differences.


Set one with Chanel, Bobbi Brown, Edward Bess and Burberry illuminating powders:
  • Chanel Mouche de Beaute (discontinued) has a more gel-like texture with a transparent quality, it has a lot more glitz and sparkle giving it a paler look since the shimmers are more on the silvery side
  • Chanel Pearl Glow Powder (discontinued) has a more matte base, it's also more powdery and has more yellow with gold shimmers
  • Bobbi Brown Beige Shimmer Brick ($42) is significantly more frosted, the pale champagne shimmers give it a paler finish
  • Edward Bess South of France ($45) is a quad with soft pinks and pearls, it has a softer finish with less shimmer, it's also more pink in tone
  • Burberry Golden Radiance ($48) has a lot more frost to it, it's also darker with more taupe/tan/gold tones


Set two includes some from MAC, Hourglass and Estee Lauder:
  • MAC Shimpagne Mineralize Skinfinish (discontinued) has a high frost finish with pink/champagne tones, below you can see it pulls more pink
  • MAC Soft & Gentle Mineralize Skinfinish (original) has a paler beige shimmer, it's less complex compared to the Chanel Dentelle Precieuse
  • Hourglass Luminous Light is one of my favorite highlighters, it pulls more pink and a bit more shimmer on the skin, on me it's more champagne vs beige
  • Hourglass Radiant Light is more golden compared to the Chanel, the hourglass also has a less complex finish and mix of shimmers
  • Estee Lauder Modern Mercury (discontinued) is significantly more pink with a metallic finish


I didn't want to fall in love with an $80 powder but Chanel has created the perfect beige highlighter. On my olive skin many neutral highlighters tend to pull pink or almost white with the silvery shimmers they have. The Chanel Dentelle Precieuse has a stunning mix of bronze, peach, and rose that gives this more color giving a lively glow to the face. It's still manages to be a true soft beige highlighter without going into the gold/tan zone. It's pure love for me and I even bought one backup.


Various countries received the Chanel Dentelle Précieuse Illuminating Face Powder highlighter earlier in the year at certain retailers. In the US it is an exclusive to Nordstrom for this year's Anniversary Sale (available now). On me it's a stunning beige highlighting powder with a bit of color. If you search for other reviews you may find it looks almost bronzey on fairer skintones. It's a splurge, but in my mind worth every penny. I love it and think it's a definite must for Chanel lovers. It is limited-edition so if you're interested I suggest acting sooner than later.




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.

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.




 

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