Jun 242010

Guerlain’s Terracotta Light Summer Bronzing Powder in Blondes Hâlées ($50) is a reformulation of its formerly-released Terracotta Light Sheer Bronzing Powder.  Although the products look similar at first glance, the formula, color and tone of the products are quite different.

As both versions are still being sold, and it is worth a pause so that we can tell the difference.

The packaging of both is nearly identical.  There are two differences to look for:  First, the older versions are called “Blondes” and “Brunettes.”  The new versions are called “Blondes Hâlées” and “Brunettes Hâlées.”   Second, the limited edition version for Summer 201 uses the phrase “Summer Bronzing Powder” on the packaging and compact.  The older version does not.  Also, the new Hâlées have a slight pebbled look to the ornate embedded logo on the compact.  The older version is simpler, without the dotted texture that surrounds the swirling, embedded “G’s.”

This review focuses on Blondes Hâlées, which I recently purchased and compared to my former Blondes.

The primary differences are:

  • The texture of Blondes Hâlées is much softer and easier to pick up on the brush.  The older Blondes seems quite hard by comparison.
  • Blondes Hâlées is a deeper, darker color.
  • Blondes Hâlées is a more intense, more dramatic bronzer.
  • Blondes Hâlées has redder undertones, which is more akin to a tiny pink-red that looks more like sun-exposed “tan with a touch of red”.
  • The older Blondes has a sheerer golden tone.

Hare side-by-side swatches:

I prefer the new formulation.  Blondes Hâlées has a beautiful natural tone with a pretty golden shimmer.  I had to beat the pigment out of the former Blondes to get sheer coverage. Blondes Hâlées gives a more natural look and is much easier to work with.

Here is a comparison — on the left, no bronzer.  On the right, Blondes Hâlées:

Although Guerlain Blondes Hâlées is a deeper color tone, I find the effect quite natural.  Her skin takes on a pink tone, without any trace of orange.

Below, Liz added a pop of pink blush (Bobbi Brown French Pink) on top of Blondes Hâlées:

So, between the Edward Bess Daydream that I reviewed last and the Guerlain, which do you prefer?



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Jun 222010

For summer, I’m taking a look at Edward Bess’ Ultra Luminous Bronzer in Daydream ($48 for 0.3 oz.)), a soft, natural bronzer. This bronzer has an understated elegance that I can easily and confidently wear.

It’s impossible to over-do it.  Unlike some bronzers I’ve tried (I’m looking at you, Giorgio Armani!), Daydream does not give the faintest hint of orange or cakey build-up when densely applied.  Yet, Daydream is not too subtle.  Unlike Guerlain Blondes, which can sometimes look a little beige even on my pale skin, Edward Bess’ Daydream is soft and easily picked up by the brush.  Daydream is an easy bronzer, even for those normally reluctant to add a little glow.

Daydream is sold in a large round compact with a mirrored lid.  The compact is very slim and easy to pack for travel.

This bronzer is very soft and natural—arm swatches simply do not do this product justice.  I asked my daughter Liz to pose for one picture without bronzer (on the left), then to add Daydream for a second picture (on the right):

Liz applied this product with a Sephora Bronzer Brush, added the color nearly everywhere, but more heavily on the chin, cheeks and forehead. As you can see, Liz’s picture on the left is her normal pale NC15/20 (Chanel Cameo in Tient Innocence Fluid) skin tone.  Adding Daydream for the picture on the right, Daydream’s almost-matte texture gives Liz a “your skin but better” glow.  The powder is very easy to work with, and seems to take away any oil-glow from being outdoors in summer.

  • Tutorial:   Bronzers can be used to sculpt and contour by focusing on the forehead, chin and cheeks.  Makeup artist Lisa Eldridge has done a lovely bronzer tutorial at her site.

Liz finished her makeup by adding a blush, here Nars Lovejoy, to finish her look:

Overall, I like Edward Bess’ Daydream bronzer for an everyday, subtle and sophisticated look.  It’s very appropriate for work or for a formal outdoor event where I want a bit of glow.  For example, if I were attending a wedding, business meeting or a formal lunch, this is the bronzer that I would reach for.  I can see myself purchasing Desert Sun, Edward Bess’ darker bronzer, for a more dramatic look and to add variety.

Stay tuned–this week, I am hoping to post a review for the newly reformulated Guerlain Blondes bronzer for a comparison.

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Jun 212010

Chanel Rouge Allure Laque in Phoenix #78 ($32) is a beautiful shade for summer.

It is truly a beautiful shade for both day and evening.  It manages to be a strong color without being overpowering.

The texture is absolutely gorgeous–it gives a bit of shimmer and glow without any obvious glitter at normal viewing distance.  It is opaque in one coat, it would have to be blotted off to get a stained look.

It’s both dramatic and wearable, and looks great with summer colors.

This skintone is MAC NC 15/20 (Chanel Cameo).  How do you think this would work with your skintone?

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Jun 182010

Update (7/11/10):  I’ve received the palette–review and photographs are here.

Former text:

Today on Urban Decay‘s Facebook page, these gorgeous palette and swatches appeared, due to release in Fall 2010.  The site says that these will be available online at Urban Decay’s site on Tuesday June 29, 2010.   I’ll update this as the company releases more information:

More– Vegan Palette:

What do we think? (I can’t wait to read your comments!)

I’ll add a link to this is the tab marked “Links to Fall 2010 Collections,” above.  By the way, I’m always updating this page so check back.  There are currently links to Chanel’s Enigma eyeshadow quad added (linking to the Beauty Moogle’s blog) and a few quick pictures of the MAC-Disney collaboration.

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Jun 182010

Yves Rocher developed a makeup line 50 years ago in his home village of La Gacilly in the Brittany region of France.  The line features products based on plant life.   The company designs and manufactures its own products, refuses to use genetically modified plants and has not done animal testing since 1989.  There are Yves Rocher boutiques scattered around Paris, including on the Champs Elysees.

Here, Yves Rocher sells through a U.S. website.

When I saw an Yves Rocher boutique on my recent trip to Paris, I reasoned that because it was a French company that it must stock an awesome taupe.  It’s true–it makes a few and during a recent 40% off sale I grabbed the most dramatic.

Yves Rocher’s Loose Pearls-Intense illuminating Effect in Nacres Taupe ($18/18 euros) is a highly metallic, cool toned taupe loose powder that contains a lot of shimmer, glitter and plenty of shine.  All of this is packaged in a “we love the Earth” organic-labelled bottle.  Although I had previously thought that natural makeup lacked impact, I’m realizing that some natural makeup companies recognize that some women aren’t willing to give up style to go green.

This is one of the most metallic taupes that I own.  Eye-safe, it behaves as if MAC made a Reflects Taupe and stirred in Coco pigment.  It is …. a little vial of drama.  Here is a swatch applied dry:

Here is a side-by-side with a dry and wet swatch:

This is a beautiful eyeshadow. It’s dimension is gasp-worthy.  Honestly, I don’t know how Yves Rocher has made an eye-safe, organic eyeshadow with this look.  That being said, it is likely that this is an evening-only eyeshadow for me. The shimmer-shine is so dramatic, I have a hard time wearing this during the day except for a day-formal look.   If you like metallic neutrals, you should look for an Yves Rocher online sale and pick one up.

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