Mar 252015
 

Nars Glenan Flibuste Nunavet Reykjavik Velvet Shadow sticks narsNARS has released some new Velvet Shadow Sticks ($28 each). Here, I’m testing four colors:  Glenan (deep blue), Filbuste (deep black), Nunavet (violet/purple) and Reykjavik (a steely grey).  These are currently available at Nars Cosmetics online, and Nordstrom, 

Nars Glenan Flibuste Nunavut Reykjavik Velvet Shadow sticksThese have a very rich, intense pigment that sets within about a minute or two and lasts all day. The deep color can be smudged out beautifully. You can use these to amp up a shadow by applying them as an all-over dark matte base on the lid. For a more subtle effect, I’ve been applying these along the lash line, then smudging them into a gorgeous line with the Nars #45 smudge brush.

Nars Smudge 45

I’ve been pairing them with a shimmery or metallic neutral all-over the lid, for example using Nars Eye Paint (pictured below), or Tom Ford’s cream eyeshadow in Platinum.

Nars Eye Paints Swatches allThe longevity of Nars Velvet Shadow sticks is excellent–I remove them with an oil cleanser at the end of the day. They don’t budge. Of course, NARS Velvet Shadow Sticks look awesome with the Nars eyeshadow palettes designed as part of this All About Eyes collection. This includes the NARS Unforgettable Eyes palette (reviewed here).

Nars Eyeshadow Palettes04….as well as the NARS Irresistible Palette (reviewed here):

Nars Eyeshadow Palettes01

Nars Velvet Shadow Stick

Swatches:

Nars all about eyes33

As you can see, these are pigmented, creamy mattes. I find them convenient because they have the impact of a gel liner, but without the need for an application brush (these can be smudged with a finger). I love the colors–of course, the black and gray and standards in my repertoire. The purple and deep blue are jewel-toned flattering colors that really can set off the white’s of one’s eyes.

Nars all about eyes34

Bottom line:  highly recommended.

Nars all about eyes03
Nars Cosmetics sent these items to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

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Mar 222015
 

Chanel Micro Beauty serum04a

Chanel Hydra Beauty Micro Serum ($110) has become a staple lately for my skincare routine. This light serum seems to lift, hydrate, plump and revitalize my skin from the first application, and the effect gets even better over time. Chanel has partnered with a research company, and worked for five years to develop skincare based on micro-fluidics, which re-engineers fluids at the microscopic level. The result gives the product powerful efficacy with an ultra light, elegant, Chanel-worthy feeling. This serum is currently available at Chanel onlineNordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Macys, Bloomingdales and other Chanel sources.

Chanel Micro Beauty serum12a

This serum is extremely easy to use. Just a pump or two before applying sunscreen (one can use other serums underneath). If you would like extra hydration, you can use an additional moisturizer. Chanel Hydra Beauty Micro Serum is a moisturizing serum, and does add hydration, so you will likely need less (or lighter) moisturizers when using this formula.

Chanel Micro Beauty serum21 The product feels invisible and non-existent. It absorbs quickly, leaving only results. It smooths, plumps, and hydrates. I love the effect.

Chanel Micro Beauty serum16aFrom the line:

THE BREAKTHROUGH
CAMELLIA MICRO-DROPLETS:
Patented micro-droplet technology delivers the purest form of Camellia Oil Extract, exclusive* new Camellia Alba OFA, to infuse skin with exceptional hydrating and plumping power.

CAMELLIA ALBA PFA:
This remarkably pure HYDRA BEAUTY ingredient, created by Chanel scientists, stimulates skin’s natural ability to restore and retain moisture for a smooth, radiant appearance.

BLUE GINGER PFA:
To protect the benefits of Camellia Alba PFA, Chanel revealed one of nature’s most powerful anti-oxidants, Blue Ginger PFA. This exceptional ingredient acts as an environmental shield, blocking and neutralizing free radicals to help reinforce the complexion.

Chanel Micro Beauty serum15

I love companies that push research and innovation forward, especially when the results are this good. As with all skincare, results will vary. However, the reviews for this have been very positive, so I thought it was important to report mine.

Chanel Micro Beauty serum08

This review includes affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

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Mar 202015
 

Laura Mercier Indiscretion03Laura Mercier’s Face Illuminator Powder in Indiscretion ($42) is a rose gold highlighter with a gorgeous texture. Thankfully, there is no overspray (those days seem to be over! yay!), but rather this is a ultra fine metallic pressed powder. Gorgeous!

Laura Mercier Indiscretion05 copyIs there enough shimmery rose gold in the world right now? I don’t think so. This leaves a beautiful soft metallic highlight, suitable for the high planes of the face.

Laura Mercier Indiscretion08

Some of you might recognize a similar pattern and format of Laura Mercier Indiscretion, especially if you picked up Laura Mercier’s Spellbound a year or two ago. I found the products identical–perhaps a variation that is typical going from batch to batch. If you do have Spellbound, in my opinion you do not need Indiscretion. Here are some side-by-side swatches.

Laura Mercier Indiscretion12a

By my eye, in real life I saw no difference. You might see a slightly different shine on one swatch versus another, and slight differences in the pan. To me, Indiscretion looked slightly lighter in the pan. But these are variations that might be typical of batch variations that I frequently see in shopping on different coasts or buying two products several months apart.

Laura Mercier Indiscretion Spellbound Comparison 1a

If you did miss Spellbound, you’ll want to strongly consider Indiscretion. These are beautiful highlighters, giving a gorgeous rose gold glow. Beautiful!  Laura Mercier Indiscretion is currently available at Sephora.

Laura Mercier Indiscretion04

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Mar 182015
 

Nars Reckless 1NARS Reckless Powder Blush ($30) is a shimmery soft warm very light pink. This is an unusual shade, and I think in many lines this might be considered a soft highlighter. Of course, this fairy-sparkle shade fits perfectly with the modern nude theme of Nars Spring 2015. NARS Reckless Blush is available at Nordstrom, Nars online, Sephora, Barneys New York, Bloomingdales, and Neiman Marcus.
Nars Spring  2015 Overview

On my skintone, Reckless actually seems to neutralize color because of the light tones, while adding a touch of shimmer and sparkle. It’s very Ice Queen. Here it is, swatched next to Nars Valhalla Eyeshadow single and Porto Venere Eye Paint.

NARS Porto Venere 41To get a sense of the color, I’ve swatched this next to MAC Bao Bao Wan Summer Opal, Laura Mercier’s Baked Powder Highlighter and Bobbi Brown’s Nude Shimmerbrick. As you can see, Reckless is a very light, cool nude with micro sparkle.

Nars Reckless Blush swatches comparisons1b

One more, slightly different order (but same comparisons).

Nars reckless blush swatches6a

NARS Reckless blush seems like is a powder version of a Cococabana, or other cool highlighter. A niche cool nude shade, it evokes an edgy vibe. It’s going to glow perfectly and naturally on some skin tones.reckless1984

NARS Reckless Blush is available at Nordstrom, Nars online, Sephora, Barneys New York, Bloomingdales, and Neiman Marcus.

Nars Cosmetics sent this blush to Cafe Makeup for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information see About Cafe Makeup

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Mar 152015
 

Nars spring 2015 ba

NARS lip glosses in Guyane and Vent Sale ($26 each) are unusual shades in the makeup world. Although they look like quiet neutrals in the tube, both have a high pearl quality. The soft seashell beige-pink Guyana, and the white high-shine Vent Sale, are high-concept. Most will find that these are perfect for a “highlight” sheen on the center of the lip, perhaps over a matte or deep satin red. These are available at Nars online, Nordstrom, Barneys New York, and Neiman Marcus.

Nars Spring 2015 lipgloss guyane

 

NARS Guyana is a warm beige with a pearly sheen. This shade has so much shine and pearl that I find it difficult to wear alone. It’s amazing over a neutral or peach lipstick, like Chanel Patchouli or any peach/ coral.

Nars gloss spring 2015 4

NARS Vent Sale is a white silver highlight shade.

Nars Vent Sale Lip Gloss 1aThis applies a white metallic white pearl. If applied all over the lip, you will have a very high-fashion ’60’s runway look. I prefer to use this as NARS describes in its literature, a highlight in the center bottle lip while wearing lipstick.

Nars Vent Sale Lip Gloss 2aThese colors are the magic touch that we leave most wondering “how does she get that look?” The art is in the details, as all makeup lovers know. and NARS Guyana and Vent Sale glosses are those extra touches that make the look. Swatches:

NarsVent Sale1Here’s a swatch comparing the unusual NARS Vent Sale, compared to the only other “highlight” gloss that I have in my drawer–MAC Mirror from the Pedro Loucenco collection released last summer. As you can see, Mirror is more of a true silver, while NARS Vent Sale is a pearly silver white.

Nars Vent Sale1

I did a quick lip with Nars Vent Sale over Chanel Manic on the bottom lip so you can see how the highlight looks when applied over a darker shade.

Nars Vente Sale over Chanel Manic4

Bottom line, both NARS Guyana and Vent Sale are going to add a touch of artistry to your makeup stash. These are high fashion shades, and should be used carefully to enhance your look. Honestly, they are completely unique in my opinion–I don’t know of any other shade that has such as stunning dimension.

Nars Spring Lipglosses 3a

Nars Guyane and Nars Vent Sale Lip Glosses are available at Nars online, Nordstrom, Barneys New York, and Neiman Marcus.

 Nars sent these items to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

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