Tom Pecheux, Genius (photo from Estee Lauder)

Tom Pecheux is a makeup artist who is a new Creative Director at Estée Lauder, and is charged with introducing new visual and technological elements to Estée Lauder’s line.  Says Pecheux,

My role is to work with various departments including Creative, Product Development and Marketing to help create new cosmetics. Technology is always moving forward, and women are always looking for the best and the latest in their products. Now we refer to beauty as a fashion accessory, and fashion is moving very fast. If a cosmetics company doesn’t move fast, it can get lost in the shuffle. It is essential that a company specializing in beauty is up to speed with the current trends in fashion, and that is precisely why my collaboration with Estée Lauder is such an ideal fit. I’m working with Estée Lauder to help create the very latest in beauty products that are fun, playful, sexy and beautiful.

I must admit that, as large as my makeup collection is, I owned no Estée Lauder products.  Pecheux changed my opinion of the line completely.  While in Paris, I was able to see his Pure Color Night collection, which includes three limited edition products.  Although the line was originally intended only for release in Paris, this source discloses that Estée Lauder has since decided to release the products on a very limited basis in London and New York.

For the Pure Color Night line, Pecheux attempted to recreate Parisian beauty for evening:  “I am known for making women look beautiful, sensual and sexy. When given the challenge to create a collection exclusively for Paris, I thought it would be perfect to create a nighttime look, because this is when every French woman wants to look her most beautiful. I wanted to translate the seductiveness and femininity of French women into makeup,” says Pecheux.

I purchased two products–the Luminous Highlighter (roughly $40 U.S.) and the Naughty Black eyeshadows (roughly $20 U.S.).  I skipped the third piece of Pure Color Night, a neutral toned lipgloss. It is difficult to describe the quality of these products because they are unlike anything that I have encountered before.  The words “finely milled,” “soft” and “pigmented” are words that have a meaning to me from Chanel, Shu Uemura and other high quality lines.  These Tom Pecheux pieces are on an entirely new level.  I literally gasped when I saw the these powders interact with skin.

The Luminous Powder comes in a luxurious blue-black translucent case, embossed with the Estée Lauder logo:

Inside is a large pan of a golden-peachy toned highlighter, mirror and a large sponge applicator (why a sponge? I’m not sure):

Although this looks rather unremarkable in the pan, the texture, transparency and luminosity of this powder is unbelievable.  It is the most finely milled of the finely-milled powders.  It adds an effect that adds a sheer wash of light only, without the color or texture of other highlighting powders.  The texture is so soft that a soft brush seems to tear up the surface of the pan–like a delicate petal of a flower.  It gives a nearly-transparent wash on my cheek, I wore it with a soft peach blush (but it would look amazing with a nude blush or contour powder).  It gave my cheek a beautiful, natural-but-better sheen.

Sheer, luminous powders are notoriously difficult to photograph.  Their magic lies in the fact that they look entirely natural, and impart a lit-from-within glow.  I gave it my best attempt, applied heavily next to two other popular highlighting powders, Nars Albatross and Bobbi Brown Shimmerbrick in Nude. You can see that Tom Pecheux heavily applied seems transparent, adding glow while melting into the skin.  There’s no obvious sparkle that appears with most highlighting powders–rather, the soft gold sheen is so beautiful.  It does not have any metallic look that sometimes occurs with liquid highlighters.

I will say this as simply as I can–I am going to take very seriously anything that Tom Pecheux does from now on. If this product is any guide, he is the next makeup formulation genius to watch.

Tomorrow, I’ll review his Pure Color Night eyeshadow in Naughty Black.

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