Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco lipstick in Mademoiselle #5 ($30) is a medium, gently shimmery pink that is going to work for almost any occasion.   Coco Chanel was frequently called “Mademoiselle.”  The word, which in French denotes “Miss” (an unmarried woman), was appropriate for Coco who remained single throughout her life.  According to her, “I never wanted to weigh more heavily on a man than a bird.”  Mademoiselle is appropriately numbered “Number Five”— linking Coco Chanel’s name with the number of her iconic perfume.

Mademoiselle’s pleasant pink tone has enough opacity and life to provide an appropriate emphasis on the lips without overwhelming.  It’s for those quieter times when one wants to look polished, but perhaps not want to make an overwhelming lip statement.  Like many of the Rouge Coco shades, it has the very easy, lightweight and moisturizing formula.

This shade is so universal, I’m sure that it’s going to wear easily with almost everything.

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Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco lipstick in Vendome #25 ($30) is a pink-red with a very light touch of brown.  It has high pigmentation and very nice kick because of the red tones.

There are colors within the Rouge Coco line that are more brown, and another that is brick.  Vendome is strong enough to give me a good flattering color for my skin tone.  By the way, I wear the shade intensity 1.0 in Chanel foundations, and am slightly warm-toned.

Vendome is named after the historic Place Vendome in Paris.  As you can see, it’s roughly a rectangle with cut corners that give it a hexagonal shape:

The Ritz Paris hotel borders the Place Vendome on one side, and during World War II, Coco Chanel lived in an apartment at that hotel.  This gave her a beautiful view of the Place Vendome.  A back door of the Ritz opens onto the Rue Cambon, where Chanel’s clothing boutique is (and was then) located.  The hexagon shape of the Place Vendome has been echoed on the top stopper of Chanel No. 5 perfume bottle, various Chanel watches and other pieces of jewelry.


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Chanel Rouge Coco Review and Swatches – Camelia

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Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco in Camelia #10 ($30) is a light, carefree pink.  This is the color that I can keep in my everyday bag so that I can re-apply it without thinking about what I might be wearing on any particular day.  In other words, it’s an easy color that goes with almost anything.  It is lightly pigmented– it takes more coats to get an opaque color compared to others in the line.  There is a very pleasant shimmer, not quite as much as a gloss, but more than most lipsticks.  If find this shimmer much less obvious–and more pleasant–than many in the Aqualumiere line.

The camellia was Coco Chanel’s favorite flower.  It shows up in a number of her designs–in the soft pattern in the lining of some of her jackets, on jewelry, scarves and almost anywhere else imaginable.


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Chanel Rouge Coco Review and Swatches – Gabrielle

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Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco in Gabrielle #19 ($30) is a tribute to the name of Coco Chanel before she adopted the name that became so famous.

Gabrielle is only one of a few highly-pigmented reds in the Rouge Coco line, I found that this one flattered my skin tone the most.  It is bright, bold red that seems to run the tiniest  bit deeper and cooler than the rest.  Because my skin tone runs warm, the cooler-toned reds seem to work best for my coloring.  To choose your red, I highly recommend that you try them on at a counter, some of the lipsticks in this line can run a bit toward orange.

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Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco in Rouge Noir # 18 ($30) evokes the iconic blackened burgundy made famous by the original Vamp in the early 1990’s.  I still remember the write-up in Vogue, that described this as the new “it” color that would become a classic.

The Rouge Coco version of Rouge Noir has the ability to be sheered out, which gives a deep, dark red-black tone that can be rather dramatic.  I must admit that I have always loved this color–I would die if an eyeshadow or eyeliner were released with this same tone.  As a lipstick, I save this for either formal occasions, although not necessarily evening.  To me, the Hydrabase Rouge Noir has always delivered a “wear me with all-black and watch the fabulousness happen” message.  Although I haven’t owned this long, I’m hopeful that this will work with less formal occasions.

As an aside, am I the only one who noticed that the number for this lipstick– #18 — is the same as the older Rouge Noir nail polish and Vamp?


How similar is this Rouge Noir to the former Hydrabase version?  I found the former one too pigmented and strong for my coloring, nonetheless I’ve ordered one that should be on its way soon so we can do a side-by-side comparison.  At present, I believe that many will find that the Rouge Coco version is less intimidating and far more wearable.  Here’s a quick swatch on my lips:


(Go easy on me! I haven’t learned how to take good lip swatches but I’m trying.)  If you’d like to see a comparison between the Rouge Hydrabase and this Rouge Noir, look here.

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Chanel Rouge Coco- Taffetas Rose

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Feb 262010
 

Chanel Rouge Coco in Taffetas Rose #16 ($30) is absolutely beautiful standout pink.  Although I don’t often go for pinks, this one had a depth and resonance that drew me to it immediately.  It has tones of rose, pink and a the faintest touch of violet.  It has a beautiful shimmer that brings light to the face.

This is the type of color that I can wear with anything–to work, to dress up a pair of jeans or a dress.  This color adds a little bit of sophistication that I truly love.  Like the others in the line, Taffetas Rose has the smooth, lightweight, easy-to-wear formula.

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Feb 262010
 

On February 25, 2010, Chanel released 30 new lipstick shades in the Rouge Coco line.  According to the reports that I’ve seen from Chanel, this line is intended to be an easy-to-wear lipstick that feels light and moisturizing.  The Rouge Hyrdabase and Aqualumiere plastic cases have been re-worked for the Rouge Coco line.  The new lipsticks use a cool metal, which does feel cool to the touch in a purse.  I can certainly tell the difference between a Hydrabase lipstick case and a Rouge Coco lipstick case by the cooler feel of the latter in my bag without looking.

The posts that follow are a review of six colors that I purchased on the release date.  I’ve previously reviewed and swatched Rouge Coco Rivoli here.  When I was shopping, I swatched and examined all thirty of them at least twice, and found that these worked best for me.  Hopefully, these will give you a preview of some of the ones that I found were standouts for me.

The names are wonderful, each one reflecting another aspect to Coco Chanel’s life.  It is a wonderful tribute to her legacy, in a more modern formula made for quick, easy and beautiful application.

Are you ready?  Here we go!

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Feb 252010
 

Today is Chanel’s release of the Rouge Coco lipsticks of course (I can’t wait to get to the counter this evening!).

In the meantime, via the lovely Lushious Beauty, a first look at some new Chanel eye duos apparently targeted for release in April 2010 according to the site:

Will these replace the current irreelle duo’s?  That’s hard to say, although these may differentiate themselves by their texture from the other line, I completely guessing whether any company wants to keep two duo eyeshadow products on the counters forever.

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Chanel Blush Marathon: Joues Contraste Rose Petale

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Feb 252010
 

Chanel Joues Contraste in Rose Petale (currently available, $42) is a sophisticated pink.  The color seems to be appropriate for both young and old, providing a pretty skin-brightening fresh tone.

This has a subtle rosy glow that always looks appropriate.  It is neither dramatic nor extreme, and yet I can’t think of anything else that quite duplicates this color.  As with other Joues Contraste blushes, the finely milled powder invites layering for more dense color application.

This has a very “lunch at the Ritz” or “tea with the Queen” feel to it– that is, I can be comfortable wearing these on even the most proper occasion and feel perfect.

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Feb 242010
 

If you are anything like me, you’ve been reading Vogue since you were a teenager.  If you haven’t had a continuous subscription, you find a reason to grab the latest one on your way to catch a plane or back to a quiet evening at home.  The September Issue, directed and produced by R.J. Cutler, is a documentary about that iconic magazine.  The film garnered a prestigious award at the Sundance Film Festival, went out for a limited release in the U.S. last year and has just been released on DVD this week.

It is rare that interesting films are made about a thing–in this case, the September 2007 issue of Vogue, the largest one ever published.  Watching the film I couldn’t help wonder if Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt, the authors of Freakonomics, have ever sought to correlate the pages length of Vogue with the health of the world economy.  Certainly September 2007–before recent economic problems manifested–demonstrate a moment in time that we are all uncertain will be repeated.  Nonetheless, I am happy to report that the latest issue (March 2009) is a hefty 528 pages.  Perhaps things are looking up?

The film reveals some fascinating glimpses of the magazine.  The cover, as it turns out, belongs to us. Who knew? It’s intended to draw us in, to invite us to buy and read.  Inside, art and money have a symbiotic– if uneasy– relationship.  We see $50,000 worth of photographs cut in an instant, last-minute re-shoots that really do seem significantly better than the originals and an unerring sense that fashion (and Vogue) cannot exist without a firm understanding of both excellence in artistic vision and the underlying economics.

The film spends an appropriately substantial amount of time on Anna Wintour, who has been Vogue’s Editor in Chief since 1988.  Wintour is every inch an “editor”–decisive, extraordinarily visual, cool and the voice of “no.” Her trained eye and blunt demeanor are infamous.  The film shows sharp slices of her humanity to some degree through her relationship with daughter, but primarily through her discussions about her father who was himself an editor of the British London Evening Standard.  Wintour shines in her support of the then-fledgling designer Thakoon Panichgul, using her considerable influence to help him become part of a legacy of new designers.  Nonetheless, the majority of the film is a study in Wintour’s ability to cull, to separate, to push, to enforce her impossibly high standards that her extremely talented staff relentlessly seeks to meet.  Beyond this, the film demonstrates Wintour’s incredible mastery of both the art and commerce of fashion, and of Vogue as an institution within it. As Wintour breakfasts with luxury retailers at the Ritz Paris, it becomes unquestionably clear that her influence extends beyond clothes to encompass business.

The quieter star of the film is Grace Coddington, herself a former model and now Vogue’s creative director, who emerges as the magazine’s imaginative force.  The pictures that she envisions are incredible, the images that are discarded by Wintour’s eagle eye are beautiful beyond description.  If Wintour is the voice of “no,” Coddington is the voice of “yes,” seeing possibilities and building fantasies that are ultimately made real.  To the extent that there is any conflict displayed in the film, it is in Coddington’s frustration with Wintour’s decisions to cut some of Coddington’s prolific imagery.   One interesting moment was a scene featuring Coddington’s off-the-cuff statements to a relative newcomer at Vogue who was struggling with his relationship with Wintour.  Coddington advises him to stand his ground with Wintour, to demonstrate his own vision and therefore his value.  This was a heartening insight that spoke volumes about how respect is earned at that institution (and, I suspect, at most others).  Further, the uneasy dynamic between Wintour and Coddington demonstrates the tension between creators and editors–after all, without Coddington’s ability to produce unbelievable variation, Wintour would be left with little content to edit.  Without Wintour, Coddington’s platform to effectuate her creative vision might tumble.

There are glimpses of fashion in The September Issue, as Wintour visits designers for an early look, in photo shoots and on racks lining the hallways at the magazine.  Perhaps cognizant of the ephemeral relevance of that season’s collections, the film uses the clothing as mere background.  After all, fashion is always moving forward.  Vogue, it seems, will last forever.

If you are a Vogue fan, and haven’t already seen it, The September Issue is an interesting look into the magazine and well worth the 90-minutes or so viewing time.  My DVD has an additional disc, advertised to include nearly the same length in extra footage and features.  I have a feeling that I’ll be watching both several times, it’s both an interesting and enjoyable treatment of these fashion icons.

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