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September 2010

Guerlain Mascara

Le 2 de Guerlain Mascara Review

September 30, 2010

When I attended a Guerlain Master Class a few weeks ago, I received a free Le 2 de Guerlain Mascara ($36) as a gift with purchase for mentioning that I had learned about the event through the Hello Beauty blog.  Liz also received one– and so walking away from an afternoon of playing with makeup with $72 in free mascara?  Yes, please!

As with other Guerlain products, Le 2 de Guerlain Mascara has impressive, out-sized packaging.  This mascara comes in a very very long, gold elegant tube.  It makes my Chanel mascara’s look tiny.  The amount of mascara in the Guerlain tube is listed as .08 ounces, compared with the .021 ounces for Chanel.  Note that the Guerlain mascara tube looks metallic, but it feels like a traditional plastic tube.  This is all to the good–metal would make this large tube too heavy.

As the name suggests, there are two wands in this mascara.  One is a traditional mascara wand, the other is a very tiny mini version intended for the lower lash line.  The shape of the wand handles is a nice touch–their large, flat shape makes holding the wand highly controllable and pleasant.

Thoughts about Le 2 de Guerlain Mascara :

  • A+ on curling.  Neither Liz nor I need to use a curler when using this mascara.
  • Better than average ability to lengthen–the lashes take on a believable but impressive length
  • Staying power is excellent.  I must affirmatively remove this mascara or it will last until the next day.  An oil cleanser or other eye makeup remover works well.
  • No flaking, no smudging.  None.
  • My lashes feel soft, and hold the curled shape throughout even the longest days.  No “crunchy” or stiff feeling at all.
  • Le 2 de Guerlain is not a particularly volumizing mascara–if you are looking for DiorShow ooomph, keep looking.  That being said, there is a respectable amount of volume added with Le 2 de Guerlain.   I have to face it, few of us are going to pull off Kim Kardasian lash fullness without looking like we’re trying a little too hard when we go about daily life.
  • I like having the small brush for reaching the smaller lashes to catch small lashes in the eye’s inner corner.

Now the big question–would I buy?  I’m currently on a mascara quest, and so the answer is “maybe, unless I find something else really really fabulous.”  It’s not the most dramatic mascara out there, but it is certainly not a basic one either.  Le 2 does give me a very defined, curled, polished, and believable look.  There is no question that this mascara is a real pleasure to use, and my lashes feel good.  I like it better than Chanel Exceptionnel for dramatic effect, and about the same as Chanel Inimitable.  Given that there is only a $6 price difference, if the Guerlain lasts longer because it contains significantly more product then it may be worth the switch–but only time will tell on that question.  Given some other reviews I’ve read, I need to try Armani’s Eyes to Kill (full size) and Le Metier de Beaute before committing.

Then again, in the mascara world, is commitment even possible?

EDIT: I used this mascara 6-7 days every week from the late September 2010 until December 25, 2010. It lasted almost three months of heavy use.  Toward the end, I began using the end with the smaller wand as the end with the larger wand starting running dry.  I still got a good look using this method.  On my next tube, I’ll use the small mascara as a “base coat” and the larger end second to even things out.  Overall, I loved using this.  No smudging, great wear time, gorgeous lashes. At a reader’s suggestion, I’ve now chosen Guerlain’s Le 2 Volume Mascara as my current mascara.

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Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Cream Blush

September 29, 2010

As tidying up week continues on Café Makeup, Elizabeth Arden was kind enough to allow me to experiment with three of their Ceramide Cream Blushes ($24 each).  I tried the blush in three colors– Pink, Nectar and Plum.  As with other Elizabeth Arden Ceramide products, the company promises skin care benefits from Ceramide Triple Complex and Vitamins A, C and E.  I cannot attest to these benefits as I have only tried these blushes for a short time. Continue Reading

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Becca Glossy Lip Tint in Daiquiri

September 28, 2010

Becca is a brand that is getting harder to find, but is worth the search.  Lately, Liz and examined Becca Glossy Lip Tint in Daiquiri ($23 for 9 ml), a color that looks a little scary orange in the tube but delivers a sheer, wet looking gloss that looks very pretty.

I’ve always loved Becca’s sturdy, travel-ready packaging, and their Glossy Lip Tints are no exception.  The tube is clear so as to easily identify the color, the doe foot is a nice standard type, and there is an overall rubbery feel to the tube that resists fingerprints.  This same texture is very easy to hold on to without it slipping away from me.

This gives a warm peachy look when swatched.  The gloss has a faint fruity scent that I can’t quite identify–it’s pleasant and fades quickly.

Daiquiri has a pleasant, gel-like feel and gives a glossy, sheer sheen to the lips.  It’s one of those “just had an orange popsicle” colors that lets your natural lip color show through, but gives a pretty warm pink-with-a-touch of orange tint that enhances their natural color.

Overall, Becca’s Glossy Lip Tint in Daiquiri surprised me as a very nice, wearable shade.  Liz reported that she really liked the color and feel of the gloss.  As Liz goes through gloss as fast as, well–as fast as I do, I’m sure that she’ll wear this one as a good, everyday color for several months to come.

This product was provided without charge to Café Makeup for consideration for review.

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Ricky, I’m Home: Café Makeup Visits a NYC Institution

September 28, 2010

When New York City native Joeybunny asked me what I wanted to see when visiting earlier this month, of course Bergdorf’s was at the top of my list.  Yet I had to add another legend too–Ricky’s–one of those crazy wonderful makeup stores that sells everything–yes like, literally everything.

There’s a vast supply of hair care items, an overwhelming amount of theater makeup, and every tool that any beauty junkie could imagine.  If you run the word “glitter” through Ricky’s online store search engine, you get 136 hits.  Their website lists 437 shampoos.  They have venetian masks, false lashes galore, glittery Mary Jane shoes, magic wands, hair dryers, a good supply of Ben Nye theatrical makeup, candles, skin care, and glitter tattoos.

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Chanel Nail Polish

Les Khakis de Chanel: Summary

September 27, 2010

This week at Cafe Makeup, I’m doing some tidying–I have several pictures that I’ve been holding until I understand the products better, portions of other collections that came late, and other things that have been in my picture folder waiting for some time for a write up.

In that spirit, I wanted to complete my review of Les Khakis de Chanel, the three limited edition Le Vernis polishes for Fall 2010–Khaki Vert, Khaki Rose and Khaki Brun ($23 each).

It’s not surprising that these colors are woven into our makeup collections this season, they evoke the military theme now pervasive in fashion.  These high-shine, no-sparkle dead-serious neutrals seem a perfect compliment to green and black flannels and other wools.  Am I dreaming or would Khaki Brun look fabulous with this jacket?
Christian Louboutin over the knee green flannel over-the-knee boot epitomizes Fall military, from the first moment that I saw them in Saks (in Khaki, of course):
Previously posted, here is Chanel’s Khaki Vert, a color that I wore for one week straight after it arrived:
On nails:
Since I originally posted Khaki Vert, Khaki Rose (left) and Khaki Brun (right) arrived:
Khaki Rose is a pink-tinted medium brown that applies as a neutral.  The color reminds me of a basic eyeshadow that, almost without realizing it, you might use up simply because it is so unique and yet universal.  That being said, if I were to skip one of the three Les Khaki de Chanel, it would be Khaki Rose based on my personal taste.  Although I’m doubtful you will find an exact duplicate, the other Le Khaki colors are prettier in my opinion than Khaki Rose.
Khaki Brun turned out much better than I had hoped.  As you might expect given its name, it’s a khaki-brown that looks fabulous with black.  I love the khaki twist on the deep taupe trend:

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