Showing posts with label YSL. Show all posts
Showing posts with label YSL. Show all posts

Monday, November 2, 2015

Rosy Red and Pink Tinted Lip Balm Treatments for Holiday

Today I've rounded up nine of my favorite rosy tinted lip balms for the holiday season coming ahead. Many of you loved last year's roundup on holiday reds for lips and nails. This year's version is for the neutral lip lover who is afraid to wear bold reds on the lips but wants to try something with some color. If you're like me and almost always wears neutral colors on the lips, tinted lip balms, treatments and oils offer sheerer coverage and are more natural looking. I have a mix of pink and reds in a number of different formulas. If you're looking for a good double-duty lip product that offers tint and hydration, I hope this guide will help you find a new one this month.

Below are a mix of potted balms, wand/gloss-like balms, squeeze tubes and twist up sticks. All of these offer a glossy sheen. As usual with most balms, lasting power will not be the same as with lipsticks, but this means that they fade more naturally. Oils often come with a stain built in so there is the hydration aspect but the color will stain the lips and last longer throughout the day. Several of these have been reviewed in depth before. I'll link previous reviews.

Shown from left to right:

  1. By Terry Baume de Rose Nutri-Couleur in Bloom Berry ($56, review) is one of the most expensive lip products I own. Splurging on the regular Baume de Rose made a big dent in my wallet and once the tinted versions launched an even bigger dent was made. This is a super lush thick rose-scented balm. Bloom Berry is my holy grail red lip balm because it for me it's the perfect shade of berry red. The pot is really large so it will last a long time. I've had mine for over a year, there's still a lot left and it hasn't gone bad yet.
  2. By Terry Baume de Rose Nutri-Couleur Cherry Bomb ($89 for set of 5, review) comes in the full-sized pot, but I have it from a holiday set (both the pot and wand are identical in color). For those who want a brighter cherry red, this one is a lovely color that is bright but not too bright. It will give your lips a natural flushed look.
  3. Hourglass No. 28 Tinted Lip Treatment Oil in Icon ($42) is the latest from Hourglass Cosmetics. If you've tried the original clear lip oil, you are probably aware of how luxurious, hydrating and amazing the formula is. It has anti-aging ingredients and oils to hydrate, condition and soften the lips while reducing wrinkles. The packaging is truly unique with a press-pump dispenser and a gold tip cap. Icon is a sheer glossy see-through red. It's truly luxurious and gives the lips a healthy glow. Pigment is sheer but noticeable. It does fade to a natural shine throughout the day. Out of all the lip treatments this one feels the most hydrating on my lips.
  4. Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask in Smashed ($26, review) is a classic lip treatment that works wonders as a lip treatment. As a tint this is one of the sheerest and lightest in pigment so if you're super timid with color, this one offers a very natural wash of color. If you've tried the Bite Beauty Agave Lip Masks you are probably familiar with the thick but lush hydrating formula. It offers a veil of moisture that is really good for dry lips.
  5. Fresh Sugar Shine Lip Treatment in Cherry ($18.50, review) is a tinted lip treatment that is a classic red cherry color. It has high shine and comes in a tube with a sponge tip applicator. These also come in the twist up stick form. The stick has more pigment while the tube is sheerer but offers more shine. If you have super dry lips, you may find the color from the tube will settle into lines. The color is a vibrant cherry red but is sheer so it's not in-your-face bright.
  6. Burberry First Kiss Gloss Lip Balm in Rose Blush ($26) is a newer lip product from Burberry. I wanted the Crushed Red color but it's been sold out at my local Sephora (I need to just order it online already). I have a couple of these lip balms sight unseen. Part of me was expecting to be disappointed because I thought they would be basic and sheer. The other part of me had high hopes because I'm a fan of their lip products. These lip balms are really amazing. They offer enough color to show up on the lips and also have an amazingly smooth feel. There's slip but it's not greasy. I'm head over heels in love. It's also scent-free.
  7. Clarins Instant Light Lip Balm Perfector in Red ($25, review) is my favorite stick balm formula. You can read the full review with swatches of all the shade options linked above. The only downside is the size and price. They are on the small side which makes them pricey. The formula can't be beat though.
  8. bareMinerals Pop of Passion Lip Oil Balm in Punch Pop ($16) is a twist up stick balm oil treatment. If you've tried other traditional tinted lip oils you may have been disappointed with the color payoff (I know I have). The oils in stick form from bareMinerals offer more pigment. They swatch sheer on the hands but the texture of the lips really picks up the color. The ones I tested have a slight stain in the pigment as well which makes the color last longer than most balms. The formula is plush and also unscented. I give these a thumbs up for pigment and coverage.
  9. YSL Volupté Sheer Candy in 04 Succulent Pomegranate ($36) is a pinkish fuchsia color that's soft and sheer. I'm beyond obsessed with the Volupté Sheer Candy formula although for most it is either a hit or miss. If you want a super lush balmy feel with a glossy shine, these are among my favorite sheer lipsticks that offer hydration. They are scented like grapefruits or mangos (to me it smells like a mix of both) but it's not overly sweet and they also taste good.
Swatched below in the same order:

Swatched on the lips:

My top picks:

By Terry Baume de Rose Bloom Berry for the best color
Hourglass Lip Oil in Icon for the most hydrating feel
Clarins Instant Light Lip Balm Perfector and YSL for the best texture

If you're a neutral lip lover who is curious about rosy colors for the lips but want something a little more natural than the traditional bold red lipstick, I hope you found this roundup helpful! Do you have a favorite tinted lip balm or treatment?

Press samples featured in this post include items from Clarins, Hourglass and Bare Minerals. All others purchased by me.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Concealer Rotation - Fall Edition

Today I have a roundup of concealers I've been putting to the test. It's been a year since I last did a concealer rotation. Since my summer trip to Europe back in June I've gotten a few shades darker than normal so my go-to favorites Clé de Peau Beauté in Almond and NARS Ginger no longer matched my skin. Several months ago one of my friends asked me about my favorite concealers which include Clé de Peau Beauté, NARS and Edward Bess. Those three brands also happen to be her favorites but she wanted to try something new and so began my hunt for something new that would perform as well if not better than my tried and true. This post has been several months in the making. It took me weeks of testing and swatching with several trips to the counter to find matches. Finding a shade can be tricky depending on what you want to conceal. Also some oxidize in color so a swatch of color that is an exact match might turn out to be too dark after it sets.

I put five new-to-me concealers to the test from Charlotte Tilbury, Bare Minerals, Urban Decay, Make Up For Ever and Chanel. In addition I've added a feature on the Surratt Surreal Skin Concealer (I bought this last spring but never reviewed it) and I've included the Clé de Peau Beauté and YSL Touche Éclat for swatches in the roundup. Most brands have more than one type of concealer formula. I looked for ones with a creamy texture that blended easily on the skin without emphasizing lines. I prefer medium to full coverage with a smooth looking finish. Ideally I would like something with 100% full coverage but finding an exact match is tricky and I often find full coverage concealers too thick.

Below from left to right:
  • Surratt Beauty Surreal Skin Concealer ($50 for 0.06 oz) in #5 is the most expensive concealer I've tried in the per oz sense. It comes in a twist up stick form and has sheer to medium coverage. I found 5 to be a good match but the coverage is minimal and texture is on the dry side. If you have oily skin or find that you only need a tiny bit of brightening/coverage this one is good, but I wasn't thrilled with it. I will use it to the end though.
  • Clé de Peau Beauté Concealer ($70 for 5 g/.17 oz) in Almond is one of my all time favorite concealers. It's extremely pricey but well worth the splurge. It covers under the eye really well, doesn't cake, lasts all day and blends really well. The trick is to warm it up with the fingers to apply. If you apply it cold and straight from the tube, it can look thick. A little goes a long way and my tube has lasted forever without going bad (one lasted 2 years).
  • Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher Conceal and Treat Stick ($35 for 3.5 ml/0.12 fl oz) in #3 is a new concealer to me. It's one that's been on my radar for a long time but I'm usually not a fan of click-type brushes because they seem so unsanitary to me. This is my new favorite. It conceals and brightens dark circles like magic. It blends into a creamy smooth finish. It stays put although you do need to set with powder. It works wonders on spots as well. This has a skincare element to hydrate and plump the skin. I'm in love.
  • YSL Touche Éclat Radiant Touch Concealer ($42 for 0.1 oz) in 5.5 is a classic I've been using on and off. I found it worked under the eyes to brighten and conceal but in a very natural minimal way. Coverage is sheer to medium. If you don't have a lot you need to cover under the eyes and need just a tad of brightening this is good. For me as I get older I find I need and prefer more coverage (I'm 34 right now). For spot coverage this doesn't do much.
  • Bare Minerals bareSkin Concealer ($20 for 6 ml/0.20 fl oz) in Medium-Golden and Tan were both pleasant surprises. I say they surprised me because the color range look liked it skipped my match. Medium-Golden is my current match for under eyes. It covers smoothly and has a thinner texture making it feel truly weightless. Under the eyes it makes the skin look smooth. There's no caking or emphasizing of lines. It is on the creamy side so if you have super oily skin it might be too dewy for you. It has a slight glow without looking too glowy that makes the face look younger with brightness. It held up well in the high 80 degree heat for me (I set it with Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder).
  • Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer ($28 for 5 ml/0.16 fl oz) in Medium Neutral and Med-Dark Warm is something that is raved about by so many. I was matched in store to Med-Dark Warm. It's one that is a perfect match on my skin but darkens after 5 minutes. In store I tried both the Medium Neutral and Med-Dark Warm, one on each side. The artist who matched me said she thought the darker one was better. I'm actually in between shades for under eyes. I prefer the lighter option for the eye area and the darker one for spot cover. Texture is thin but creamy. It lasts all day without caking, creasing, fading or drying out. I would say the color selection is pretty limited and the colors do oxidize. If you can test this in store - see how it wears throughout the day before picking a color.
  • Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer ($32 for 15 ml/0.5 fl oz) in 7 and 8 are two shades I picked up from Sephora. I also tested these, one on each side. The artist said she thought 8 was better. The product does darken slightly, but not as much as the Urban Decay. I bought 8 originally and asked my husband what he thought. He thought it looked like an exact match but I felt it made my face look sallow and tired (for under eyes). I ordered 7 which I found to be better for under the eyes and which will be a good match for other areas as I lose my tan. 8 works perfectly for spot coverage. If you want something that covers spots really well and looks seamless by blending into the skin this one is really quite amazing.
  • Chanel Correcteur Perfection Concealer ($42 for 7.5 g/0.26 oz) in 30 Beige is something I gave a try recently. Chanel concealers seem to have gone through several reformulations over the years. I've never really been a huge fan but it's mainly because I'm always matched to colors that are way too pale for what I should be wearing. I know everyone has their own take on how to match concealer, but I really don't like having my under eye area 2-3 shades lighter than the rest of my face. In this case I'm again, in between shades. I bought 30 although I really should have passed on this one. The consistency and coverage is really good. Right now 30 is just the slightest bit too dark for under eyes but 20 is definitely too light.

Swatched side by side:

I spent hours researching concealer shades and swatches before going to the counter. Even if a makeup artist offers to match me, I still like to test multiple shades to see how they compare. Half the time I'm mis-matched and researching swatches ahead of time helps me know what to look for. I was able to swatch most of the shades side by side for reference. The only line I skipped was Make Up For Ever because the 3 stores I went to each were missing testers of multiple shades.

Surratt Beauty concealers come in a small twist up tube, there are currently eight shades, each color has a number as the name:

Cle de Peau Beaute comes in a twist-up tube, there are currently 6 shades:

Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher comes in a brush wand style, you twist the base to click up product (similar to Stila Lip Glazes), there are 10 shades available:

YSL Touche Eclat (unit was missing 1.5) comes with a brush tip that dispenses product when you push the base, there are 10 shades available at Sephora. Some other retailers also have shade #6. The colors swatched side by side seem odd because they don't appear to go from lightest to darkest. Even after doing a lot of research, making sense of the options, colors and undertones can still be confusing. I took a photo of the display and double checked each pen to make sure they were in the correct slot before swatching in numerical order:

Bare Mienrals bareSkin Concealer comes in a wand with a sponge tip applicator, there are six colors currently available:

Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer comes with a sponge tip applicator in a tube, there are eight shades available, I like that they have neutral and warm options in some of the shades:

Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer comes in a squeeze tube, the formula is really concentrated so a little goes a long way, unfortunately none of the stores I visited had testers of all the colors so I wasn't able to swatch all the shades. There are 12 shades available, but they some skip numbers, it goes from 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 18 to 20.

Chanel Correcteur Perfection comes in a long tube with a sponge tip applicator. This one wins for the prettiest packaging, there are six shades available:

In terms of applying concealer, these days I like to use the fingers to pat and blend. If you prefer tools, three tools I really like are the Sephora Hakuhodo Concealer Brush, Chanel #10 and beautyblender (previous reviews linked for reference).

In testing a number of different brands of concealer I have indeed found a few new favorites. To sum up my thoughts:
  • My top two favorites for under eye are the Charlotte Tilbury Retoucher and Bare Minerals bareSkin concealers, they brighten the face, cover dark circles really well and both last all day on me
  • Best spot cover product is the Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer
  • Urban Decay Naked Skin wins for best multi-purpose concealer, but shades darken/oxidize and color selection is pretty limited
  • Surratt Beauty was the most disappointing for me, mainly because it didn't have the coverage I was looking for and texture is on the dry side
  • Chanel would win if the color selection was more diverse (I'm in between shades, and based on my swatches I suspect many of you will fall in between shades or outside of the range completely)
If I had to recommend you check out only one, the Charlotte Tilbury wins for new ones that I've tested, but my heart still belongs to Cle de Peau Beaute. The NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer is still a formula that I really like for under the eye and spot treatment, but after looking at all the colors I found the next shades up from Ginger to be either too pink or too dark. (Café Makeup has an amazing post with swatches of all the NARS concealer shades swatched here.)

In case you're new to any of these brands, I've listed some of the retailers where you can find the following brands:
What's your go-to concealer right now? As always I would love to hear about your favorites or what you've been testing right now. Do you use the same for under eye and spots? Or do you have different colors/brands you use?

The Bare Minerals concealers were provided as press samples for review consideration.
All others purchased by me.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Inside My Bag

I have a peek at what's inside my bag this week. My well-loved Prada Saffiano Tote has held up remarkably well over the past couple of years, I'm really impressed with how sturdy the leather is. I had read mixed reviews about the quality, stitching and durability. I do take good care of my bags, but overtime it's a given that the edges will become worn, some stitching comes loose and scratches are almost always inevitable. With this one, all the stitching has remained in tact. The edges haven't shown any wear or scuffs. There are little studs/feet at the base which I think is a huge plus in protecting it if you set it on the ground or on a chair. Perhaps the biggest plus for me is that it has kept it's shape.

Onto what's inside my bag this week:

Truffle Privacy Clutch (small size) in Cabernet (c/o)
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk (swatched on lips here, also here)
MAC Pro Longwear Lip Pencil Cultured (swatched here)
Elizabeth & James Hand Cream in Nirvana White
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Lustre in Blondie (swatched here)
Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick in Bitch Perfect (swatched here)
Glossier Coconut Balmdotcom (c/o, currently sold out)
Molton Brown Hand Cream Gingerlily (c/o)
YSL Pop Water Glossy Stain 203 (currently 10% off at Nordstrom, swatched here)

Truffle launched a new color for fall called Cabernet which is a deep plum wine color. The color comes in a wide selection of options: Small Clarity Clutch, Large Clarity Clutch, Document Case, Privacy Clutch and a new style called the Privacy Wristlet. All the items are in the textured leather that has a coating making it super durable. I teamed up with Truffle to shoot some of their new products for their website. Also note their Nude Privacy Clutches are back in stock with an updated look. It now has the white contrast trim. Here are a few shots below that didn't make the cut, hope this helps for size reference.

Large Privacy Clutch measures 9” H X 12” W
Small Privacy Clutch measures 7 1/2” H X 9 3/4” W
Zip Wristlet measures 5" H x 8" W

What's inside your bag this week?

Items sent courtesy of brands indicated with c/o beside them. All others purchased by me.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

On My Radar / New in Beauty

Happy Sunday everyone! I hope you've had a great weekend. A few things on my beauty radar right now (from top left, clockwise):
  • Chanel has a new mini launch with some new products. There are two new Joues Contraste Powder Blushes in Golden Sun and Vibration along with a new highlighter called Infiniment Chanel Illuminating Powder. I bought one blush and the highlighter - they are almost too pretty to touch. I hope to start testing soon.
  • For holiday Hourglass has launched their Ambient Lighting Edit palette. It comes with three Ambient Lighting Powders, two Ambient Lighting Blushes and one Ambient Light Bronzer. It looks phenomenal - however since I already own five of the six colors individually and in other palettes, I think this will probably be redundant to own. I use the powders I have regularly and have yet to hit pan in any of them (they last forever!).
  • I've been on a foundation brush kick - I've been testing a number of different ones in search for a cheaper alternative to my holy grail Tom Ford Cream Foundation Brush. I'll have a roundup very soon, two of the latest I've tested include the MAC #196 Slanted Foundation Brush and the new Chanel #8 Two in One Fluid and Powder Brush.
  • Tatcha has a new Soothing Indigo Mini Set. It has travel sizes of the Rice Enzyme Powder, Recovery Cream, Silk Hand Cream and Body Butter. The Indigo line is really good for sensitive skin that is prone to irritation. Anytime my skin is dry, itchy or irritated, this line works wonders to soothe the skin and calms down redness. (There's a promo code CLEAN20 to receive a complimentary travel-size Pure One Step Camellia Cleansing Oil on any order over $20. Offer expires 9/30/2015)
  • Truffle has some new products for fall. They've launched a new Privacy Wristlet in black and cabernet. The cabernet color also comes in their document cases, clarity clutches and privacy clutch (it's gorgeous!).
  • Lipstick Queen has a new full pigment lipgloss called Seven Deadly Sins. There are six colors available online from Space NK. In a season filled with new lip products, formulas and colors, I do not need another lipstick or lipgloss - but somehow I'm still intrigued by these. Lust looks like the perfect berry red based on online swatches.
  • Drybar products just launched at! Both my husband and I swear by The Chaser Shine Cream. Other favorites of mine include the Mai Tai Spritzer and Hold Me Hair Clips. I've loved everything I've tried from the line.
  • YSL has launched four new Matte La Lacque Couture Nail Lacquers. I'm not a fan of the matte nail look, but  I might make an exception for the YSL formula (the glossy ones are really really good).
What's on your beauty radar this week?

Monday, August 31, 2015

August Favorites

I have a monthly favorites roundup today featuring both beauty and grooming products for him and her. My husband had so much fun pulling his favorite things last month he wanted to participate again. We've both been experimenting with new products - for me it's a regular thing since I'm a beauty blogger and constantly trying new things. For him, he's found out trying new products takes quite a bit of time to figure out how they really perform. There are some things he wanted to toss after one use, but in the interest of giving things a thorough test drive he's opened up to giving items more than 1-2 uses before writing things off. Our August beauty and grooming favorites this month:
  1. Tom Ford Skin Illuminating Duo in Moodlight (reviewed here) is the must-have highlighter duo this season. It gives the skin the most stunning glow. There seems to be mixed information about whether or not it's limited-edition. I received an e-mail from the team at Tom Ford confirming that it's limited-edition. Others report it is permanent. To be safe I bought 2 backups. It's that good.
  2. R+Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo Spray (Travel Size) is something I picked up a month ago. I'm the type of person who washes her hair daily so I don't use dry shampoos a lot. There are days though where it's so hot my hair needs a quick refresh. Many are white in color and leave my black-brown hair looking dusty and grey (even if I brush it out). This one is colorless and smells amazing. A few spritzes absorbs oil and gives the hair texture. I give it a huge thumbs up.
  3. First Aid Beauty Skin Rescue Deep Cleanser with Red Clay has been a long time favorite. I've used this on and off for a year now (I like to switch up my cleansers). I think I've gone through 4 tubes. It's amazing in this hot humid weather at cleaning the skin, unclogs pores and is gentle but really effective.
  4. YSL Pop Water Glossy Stains have been in regular rotation (previously swatched/reviewed here). The colors are summer-perfect. It's so easy to swipe on the lips and the stain makes the color last long. My two favorites for the last month have been Pink Rain and Wet Nude.
  5. Surratt Beauty Lip Lustre in Soigne is one of the prettiest shimmering rose pinks. It looks very metallic in the tube and when swatched on the hands but on the lips it's not as frosty. It's the perfect soft rosy pink shimmer. See it on my lips here.
  6. I acquired a few minis of the La Mer Moisturizing Soft Cream and it's heavenly. I have been rationing three tiny bottles for months now (since around May) and I've fallen head over heels. I don't want to splurge on the full size but there are some deal/value sets. I need to buy soon. It will be one of my biggest skincare splurges but it's amazing on my skin. It hydrates, feels smooth, doesn't get greasy and makes my face glow.
  7. Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow in Medium to Dark is my go-to bronzer this month. You can see the full review + swatches here. I'm completely obsessed.
  8. Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow is something I've been mixing in with foundation to add a subtle glow. I like that it has a yellowish golden undertone which I find rare in liquid illuminators which are often pinkish/opal.
  9. La Mer Illuminating Eye Gel is something I've been using since the spring. It's a good lightweight product for day and in this hot summer weather it's just what I need. For a real deep treatment my go-to is still Chanel Sublimage but it's a bit heavy for day in this super hot weather.
  10. This hakuho-do x Sephora Kusuriyubi Angled Concealer Brush is amazing. I did a full review earlier in the month which you can see here, but this is my favorite concealer brush of all time now.
  11. For the longest time my husband has been a loyal Jack Black user, but he opened up to trying some items I brought home from Kiehl's. He really likes the Facial Fuel Energizing Facewash for Men. It lathers up well and really cleans the skin making it feel refreshed without leaving any film or stripping the face. The entire Facial Fuel line has a good masculine look to the packaging which he finds appealing. I tried this one and have to say it's pretty darn good. For him, it helps prepare his skin for shaving by making it feel smooth.
  12. Kiehl's Facial Fuel Heavy Lifting Eye Repair is what he uses under his eyes to try and treat wrinkles and dry skin. This year he's been keen on researching products and changing his lifestyle to prevent aging (or at least try to delay it). He's on his second jar of this. He likes it because it hydrates and really helps with his wrinkles.
  13. Kiehl's Facial Fuel Energizing Moisture Treatment for Men has been in regular rotation for skincare. He likes this because it softens the skin without feeling greasy. It absorbs quickly and makes the skin feel invigorated. He actually got this one in Men's Starter Kit because he likes bottles with smaller packaging.
  14. Clarisonic Alpha Fit Cleansing System for Men is a new device designed specifically for men. My husband had tried my Aria with his own brush heads. He liked the concept but didn't like the design (he said it looked too girly and felt bulky). I bought this one for him - the video sold it for me. It has a good masculine look and fits in the hands easily. He uses his in the shower daily and finds it gives his skin a deep clean and has made a noticeable difference in texture and preventing blackheads/clogged pores. He has super thick facial hair and this Clarisonic has softened the ends of his hair so when he shaves it feels softer. It's on the pricey side but he's really happy with it. It fits on the shelf in our shower without taking up a lot of space.
  15. Nuxe Men Multi-Use Shower Gel is his favorite right now. He likes the way it smells and how it lathers (for him the lather is important). It leaves the skin feeling clean and moisturized. I'm a fan of the way it smells on him too. Review here.
  16. Penhaligon's Blenheim Bouquet Deodorant is something he bought because he was researching Penhaligon's shaving products. He decided to give this one a try based on online reviews he read. He likes it because it has a good fresh manly scent and doesn't make his skin peel.
That wraps it up for our beauty and grooming favorites for the month!
What were your favorites for August?

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Peachy Makeup Loves

Right now I'm obsessed with peachy makeup for lips and nails. All variations from peachy nudes, lush peachy apricots and bright coral peaches. Anything with peach is actually a staple for me - the color is almost a neutral to me because I find it goes with everything, almost every occasion or any color outfit. I've pulled a few of my favorites that I have had in rotation this summer.

Lips: Clarins, NARS, Tom Ford, Smith & Cult, Marc Jacobs Beauty, YSL and Fresh

  • Clarins Instant Light Lip Balm Perfector Sticks (c/o) have been in regular rotation. I'll have a review of all six shades hopefully this next week. All the colors have the perfect amount of color and shine for a tinted lipbalm. 02 Coral is a sheer light peach.
  • NARS Chelsea Girls Lip Gloss (c/o) is a new shade for fall, it was previously in pot form. It's now in tube form and seems a bit deeper in color compared to the original making it more wearable.
  • Tom Ford Skinnydip Lip Color Sheer is my favorite peachy nude gold shimmer, it makes the lips look shiny and naturally full.
  • Smith & Cult Her Name is Bubbles is something I've been testing out. I ordered 3 glosses, so far the gloss in Her Name is Bubbles is my favorite, it's a bright coral in the tube but goes on the lips a sheer lush peach. It smells like soft vanilla.
  • Marc Jacobs Uproar (c/o) is the prettiest sheer peach sparkle. It has an ultra luxe cushiony texture that feels super moisturizing on the lips. Review and swatches of all Enamored Hi Shine Lip Lacquers in this post here.
  • Tom Ford Lips & Boys in William is a high shimmer warm gold peach nude. The frost factor is high but I like it. If you can't do high shimmer frosts, try Skinnydip instead.
  • YSL Pop Water Glossy Stain in Wet Nude is the best sheer nude peach gloss ever. (Swatches and review of more colors here.)
  • Fresh Sugar Lip Shines now come in more shades, Sugar Nude is a sheer peachy nude shimmer with a high shine finish.

Lip swatches of a few of the colors:

Nails: Dior, Smith & Cult, Chanel and Essie

  • Dior Sunkissed is the prettiest peach nude I've ever tried. It's super flattering and brightening on the hands without looking too pale, too pastel, or too peach.
  • Dior Majesty was released in the US as a Nordstrom Anniversary Beauty Exclusive. It's a brighter peach but still a soft color. Against a tan it makes the hands look darker but it's a fun bright peach without being too bright.
  • Smith & Cult Ghost Edit is a super sheer glossy nude peach. It took three coats for me to get the color to show. It's a nice glossy neutral that lets the whites of your nails show through. The look is polished and natural.
  • Essie Sunday Funday is such a pretty coral peach with a tiny hint of shimmer. For the price, the pigment and color is really good. I have yet to find a good base/top coat combination that makes an Essie nail polish last more than 3 days on me (I am still getting major tip wear by day 2). But the colors are fun to wear and affordable.
  • Chanel Mirabella is my favorite orange peach. I'm glad it hasn't been discontinued even though it was released last year. It's a pretty bright orange.

What's your favorite peachy lipstick, lipgloss or nail polish?

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Summer Loves + Weekend Reads

Above: Summer hat by J.Crew, Pouch by Truffle, Blanket by SEVI, iPhone 5 case by Gray Malin (iPhone 6 versions available here), Sunglasses Marc by Marc Jacobs, cheeks Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick and Edward Bess Afterglow Highlighter

We've had a few days of on and off rain storms here in Southern California. We've had record breaking rain in the past few days, I don't remember ever seeing this much rain in July before. I was able to enjoy the sun in the park for a few hours earlier today before it started to pour again. We had clear blue skies for a good part of the morning so I was hopeful that it would be sunny the remainder of the day. Here are a few things I've been loving:
For lips I've been loving the YSL Pop Water Glossy Stains (swatches of my picks here) and the Clarins Instant Light Lip Perfector Sticks (review to be posted soon). Both products give the lips a lush glossy tint which I'm obsessed with for summer.

I've mentioned in a few posts I was looking for a good face sunscreen. My go-to is still the Chanel UV Essential SPF 50 because it's super thin in texture and doesn't feel heavy. I find layering it over my regular moisturizer and under foundation works really well. Many other sunscreens are too heavy.

Two others I've been loving are from First Aid Beauty. The Ultra Repair® Pure Mineral Sunscreen Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 40 is a really good one for sensitive skin. A little goes a long way so I'd recommend using sparingly. It doesn't slide into my eyes when I sweat. The 5 in 1 Face Cream SPF 30 is also really good but it's more moisturizing compared to the other one. 

My husband's favorite body sunscreen is the Jack Black Sun Guard SPF 45 because of the high SPF and because it's water resistant. We bought the travel size 3-pack for travel. He also likes the smaller sizes for carrying to the beach or the park. I've been really liking the Supergoop! Oil Spray.

I've been testing a number of foundations. Over the last month I've gotten a few shades darker because of our travels through Europe. I thought it would be a good time to test out some new formulas. I'll have a roundup in the next couple of weeks. I've been testing the Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint in Medium and it's a really good sheer no-makeup kind of makeup. It has enough coverage to even out the skin but is on the sheer side so it looks super natural. I wish I had this with me last month while traveling.

Last but not least, a few blog posts I've really enjoyed: RaeView shares her travels in Tokyo with a new vlog, Café Makeup takes on along her travels on a Paris Beauty Crawl, Really Ree has sneak peek swatches of fall releases from Tom Ford Beauty (I need everything).

I'm working my way through swatching my Nordstrom Anniversary Sale picks, Chanel Fall Beauty (I think the four new Stylo Yeuxs are must-haves), the Urban Decay Naked Smoky Eye Palette and new Charlotte Tilbury. What are you loving right now?

Press samples were provided by Truffle, First Aid Beauty, Clarins and Glossier for review. All other items purchased by me.

Friday, May 8, 2015

What's In My Bag - May 2015

TGIF everyone! This week feels like it has been a really long one for some reason so I'm really happy it's Friday. It's been a gloomy week here in Southern California and we've had a bit of rain. I've been chasing the sun as it peeks through the clouds every once in a while - I shouldn't complain because we have sunny weather here 90% of the year. I have a what's in my handbag post today. Here's what I've been carrying around lately. The tote is the St. Louis by Goyard in the PM size. In case you are wondering, the color is called Gris.

Inside my bag I have the Goyard Pouch that comes with the St. Louis Tote, also:

For makeup most of these things fit inside the bag with the exception of the Tatcha Beauty Papers, Chanel Kabuki Brush and L'Occitane Hand Cream. The base of the Clearly MAC Trio Bag is wide at the bottom so you can fit more items inside compared to the MAC Clear Bag Set (featured here). What I have with me is way too many lip products - I add one each day to the bag and end up with more lip products that I can wear at any given time.

I hope you have a lovely weekend! What has been in your bag this week?

Some press samples have been included in the post, those noted by c/o note by each item.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Yves Saint Laurent Eye Makeup: Pop Water Collection Full Metal Shadows and Couture Eye Primer

Yves Saint Laurent has quite a few new items in the eye makeup arena this season. YSL has a diverse range of formula options to suit your personal taste and preference ranging from new eye primers, powder shadow palettes and new cream/liquid metallic shine eyeshadows. The three items recently launched include:
  • The Pop Water Collection (currently exclusive to Nordstrom) features 10 new shades of Full Metal Shadows ($30 each for 0.15 fl oz / 4.5 ml)
  • Two new Couture Variation Ten-Color Expert Eye Palettes ($95 each) in Nu (warm neutrals) and Tuxedo (dark dramatics)
  • Two Couture Eye Primers ($30 each for 0.18 fl oz / 5 g) in Fair 1 and Medium 2, formulas that claim to provide 16 hours of vibrant color and crease-free eyeshadow wear

Today I have a review of the Pop Water Full Metal Shadows and the Couture Eye Primer. The Pop Water Collection is currently exclusive to Nordstrom. A few weeks ago I reviewed and swatched my picks of the Glossy Stains and Nail Lacquers here. I've been wearing the Glossy Stain in Pink Rain and Wet Nude quite frequently as they give the lips a lush glossy look with a really pretty tint of color. The Full Metal Shadows are metallic liquid shadows that come with a beveled sponge-tip applicator. Some of them need a few pumps to mix the color up for the first use and get product on the sponge. I've been playing with all the colors and tested three of them on three separate full days. I am happy to report on the eyes they are truly long-wearing. They lasted from 5 am until late evening when I took my makeup off at 5 pm on one day, at 8:45 pm on a second day, and at 11:30 pm on another day.

Application-wise these swipe easily on the lids directly from the tube and are blendable with a finger. One swipe gives a soft wash of color that is buildable. The pigment on these is really good. Some are more glitzy than others but overall I found each of the colors I picked out wearable and suitable for everyday. The shimmer is smooth and even though some have a complex sparkle, the texture melts into the skin and blends in really nicely.

Here are all the colors swatched with different lighting so you can see how they look when light or a flash hits the shadow. Note these are swatched straight from the tube without any blending. Don't be worried by the shimmer, the colors blend out beautifully and sheer out a little but they do not loose their pigment.

1 Grey Splash is a cool medium silvery metallic
2 Eau D'Argent is a cool metallic white
3 Taupe Drop is a mauvey silver taupe
4 Onde Sable is a sparkling champagne
5 Steamy Coral is a coral pink with shimmering pink flecks
6 Pink Cascade is a soft light pink metallic
7 Aquatic Copper is a metallic bronzey copper with gold flecks
8 Dewy Gold is a yellow gold metallic
9 Misty Green is a metallic green with some gold shimmer
10 Wet Blue is a bright shimmering blue

In direct sun vs with a flash:

The colors I picked out are on the neutral side:

Here is the beveled sponge tip applicator:

Swatched straight from the tube:

As someone who likes a good shimmer that isn't overly frosted or glittery, I'm surprised I found these very wearable for me. The name "Full Metal" implies that these are highly metallic, which I do think they are, but the shimmer is refined and blends out really nicely to meld with the skin. The colors are layerable so you can control how much color you want on the eyes. I give these a huge thumbs up.

Next up is the new Couture Eye Primer. There are two shades in Fair and Medium, although Medium is still quite light. Medium is a creamy soft light beige with a hint of pearl to it. To the touch the product feels very emollient and like a cream/mousse hybrid and soft in the pot but it dries to a finish that won't budge. The finish is slightly dewy but not overly glowy and really does stay put. These are designed to be a shadow base to extend wear or alone for a nude eye look. Given the lightness and pearl quality of Medium, I suspect it will be best for those with fair to light-medium skin. The pearl quality isn't overly frosty but due to the pigmented nature of the product, I think it might emphasize lines if it contrasts with the skin - much like wearing a color of foundation too light for your skin will do.

I prefer the primer under powder shadow. It creates a good semi-creamy base to help shadows adhere and blend well onto the lids. I wasn't able to test the 16 hour wear claim, but I did find it helped keep my shadow in place from early morning until late afternoon on the days I tested it (around 10 hours of wear). I wouldn't recommend this for those with dry lids (the pearl quality can emphasize dry patches) but if you have normal-to-oily this is a good one to help keep the shadow stay put.

Another shot with softer light:

Here are swatches next to the YSL Touche Eclat in 5.5 which is the color I use. You can see that the Couture Eye Base in Medium is still quite light. I think the product will be perfect as warmer weather approaches. I do hope YSL will expand the color range as this is a good primer, but very light in color. One reason why I don't like a lot of eye primers from other brands is the colors are too limited and fair making my skin look ashy or overly matte. The YSL Couture Eye Primer has a lovely pearl quality which gives this depth. If darker shades were released I would wear them as a nude shadow alone.

Bottom line love the Full Metal Shadows for their buildable coverage and long lasting power. My favorite is Onde Sable 4 even though it seems like your standard champagne shimmer, it has enough oomph to it to make it a bit more sparkly without being over the top. Taupe Drop 3 comes in close second because it's a shadow you can wear alone for an eye look. Blend the color over the lids and then layer it more along the lash line for more color and depth. The Couture Eye Primer is a good one in terms of making shadow last, I do hope they expand the color range.

Have you checked out the Pop Water Full Metal Shadows, Couture Eye Primer or the new 10-pan Shadow Palettes? What did you think? You can find them all now online and in stores at Nordstrom (note there is a GWP going on while supplies last, details online).

This post was sponsored by Nordstrom. All opinions my own. All items purchased by me. For more information refer to my Disclosures.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Loving Right Now

The week is flying by so quickly, I can't believe it's almost Friday. I picked up a couple new fragrances that have been on my wish list for ages. I picked up the small bottle of the Les Exclusifs de Chanel in Beige and Byredo Black Saffron (reviews coming in the next few weeks). Also new acquisitions are MAC Cremesheen Pearl Lipsticks in Shanghai Spice and Peach Blossom, both repurchases of lipsticks I used up a while ago. MAC lipsticks usually dry out my lips but I still can't stop using them because some of the neutrals are really good.

The Le Volume de Chanel Mascara is a long-time favorite. I just found out they released a waterproof version so I ordered it. So far I'm really liking it and I hope they release more colors in the waterproof or bring back the Navy Blue one because as far as colored mascaras go, that one was my favorite.

Also on the lips this week are Chanel Glossimer in Seashell and YSL Pop Water Glossy Stains (swatches and review here). For cheeks I still can't get over how much I love the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Radiant Light (also in a palette form). I'm going to call this one my never-ending bronzer. I use it a lot and still haven't made a dent. It will probably last me forever.

Non-beauty related is my love for these rimless aviators (more colors here). It's virtually impossible for me to find small sunglasses these days when oversized everything is in everywhere. Most of my sunglasses are several years old and it's rare these days to find smaller frames to fit my face shape and size. These are 59mm and the perfect size for me. I bought them in multiple colors (three to be exact).

Last but not least, I've been really liking the Armani Eye Tints (#9 shown above). I am eager to see how the YSL Pop Water Full Metal Shadows compare (still waiting on these to ship, I have a few on backorder).

What are you loving this week? Any new beauty discoveries or staples you're loving right now?


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