Sep 302012
 

Sephora has begun stocking some of the Nars Andy Warhol collection, include the Nars Andy Warhol Satellite of Love Highlighting Blush ($28). This is a nearly-nude shade, which is very sheer. When worn, it gives a nearly-nude finish with sparkling glitter. Essentially, this is a “chilled and party ready” glimmer powder.

Here is a comparison with another Nars Nude, which is far more pigmented and shimmery (rather than glittery), Nars Lustre:

Unlike Lustre, which gives me a bronze-peach glow, Satellite of Love is a sheer wash that imparts very little color and a touch of sparkle. Here’s is Satellite of Love on Karen at Makeup and Beauty Blog, who has a skin tone deeper than mine. As you can see, the sheerness of the blush does not impart a strong color on her skin tone either.

Bottom line, Satellite of Love Highlighting Blush is a sparkling highlighter. Like much of the collection, the blush is lovely in concept. Unlike Lustre, which seems to go anywhere, Satellite of Love is perfect for an evening look. You’ll want to be careful for day, and unless you are going for a nude look, pair this with a warm blush, bronzer, or contour.

Nars Cosmetics sent Satellite of Love Highlighting Blush to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

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Sep 292012
 

Fall 2012 is bringing a nascent trend toward light, shimmery nude eyeshadows and deep black liner. We saw this concept brought to life in Le Metier de Beaute’s Nouvelle Vague palette, as well as in MAC for Marilyn collection.  Unlike the neutral palettes we see in every line, this trend has a high contrast between the shimmery nude shades and the liner. My investment in this trend (so far) are two new Dior Luminous Graphic Eye Palettes–Dior Ivory Glow and Dior Nude Glow ($48 each).

I expected the Dior Nude Glow trio eyeshadow to resemble NARS All About Eve duo, a staple that includes a near-matte nude and a shimmery nude.

However, Dior Nude Glow has no matte nude. Rather, the palette has a softly shimmered nude, and a translucent fairy sparkle shade. The translucent shade reminded me of a daytime-friendly, wearable version of MAC Reflects in Gold. It doesn’t have nearly the drama, but it is definitely something one could wear to an in-office meeting or presentation where one comes within handshake distance of one’s peers. The liner is a powder that applies beautifully with my Laura Mercier smudge brush over my Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink.

 The Dior Luminous Graphic eyeshadow in Nude Glow performs at an excellent level. The liner is deep and pigmented, the colors give the lids a pearly nude soft pearly texture. Gorgeous. As I got onto a flight, this was the one eyeshadow palette I grabbed. I’ve worn it for a few days over my Laura Mercier Eye Basic and got excellent performance.

Dior Luminous Graphic eyeshadow in Ivory Glow gives a more dramatic effect. Like Nude Glow, Ivory Glow has a shimmery opaque shade and a translucent shade of tiny fairy sparkle, and a deep black powder liner.

The white is slightly warm, leaning a touch gold:

Because of the contrast between the liner and palette shades, this is a lovely evening palette. Those with lighter skin tones and a light touch with their eyeshadow brush might find some daytime friendly looks as well.

Swatches:

Another:

Bottom line, I thought these were a simple concept that is beautifully executed. They are unusual, on trend, and yet still neutral and wearable. Although Dior has not caught my eye for several months, I found these irresistible. Having passed on Le Metier’s version, and unable to get MAC’s Marilyn eyeshadows due to the high demand, I was glad that I found these Dior’s Luminous Graphic. I understand from reading Allura’s reviews of the MAC’s Marilyn eyeshadows that these Dior will be more to my taste, style and liking. As I say, the Dior Nude Glow is an everyday staple for me, so it was a good investment.

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Sep 262012
 

Nars Andy Warhol Collection includes three portrait-themed palettes, based on Warhol’s 1967 Self Portrait. There have been about forty of these identified, these silk-screened works were made in various sizes and color combinations. Each of the three Nars Andy Warhol have a version of this self-portrait over sprayed over three eyeshadow colors. Like the Flowers palettes, these are very large 0.42 ounce size–much larger than a typical Nars blush or eyeshadow duo.

I must admit that although I’ve seen many beauty products with a women’s cameo (Lauderee, Guerlain and MAC Barbie to name a few), I’ve never opened a compact with a man’s portrait. This “pop cameo” is entirely new. For those who engage with Warhol’s art, it’s an intriguing concept. And just as Warhol suggested that fame is fleeting–after all, we’re only famous for 15 minutes–in this palette the Warhol image brushes away quickly with just a few brushstrokes, leaving only the blocks of color behind.

A fresh palette:

After playing: 

Nars Andy Warhol Self Portrait 1 uses combinations of two colors–deep blue and green–with black for an accent liner color.

Like the Flowers palettes, these include Andy Warhol inscription on the mirror:

The three colors, all of which are matte colors, can be mixed and blended to vary the colors.

I found the colors quite soft, bordering on sheer. I was impressed that Makeup for Life was able to create this vibrant look by packing on the color.

NARS Andy Warhol Portait 2 was my favorite of this portrait series. This includes shimmering cream and silver, with a generous amount of black.

Closer, you can see how beautifully executed the overspray is:

The mirror inscription:

 

 

I found the texture of this palette far different than the other two–it was quite pigmented, easy to use and very easy to use. Swatches:

The Nars Andy Warhol Portrait 3 was a combination of  gently pigmented matte light brick and heather blue, with a deeper brown brick as the liner color.

Although the overspray has a touch of duochrome shimmer, the underlying shades are matte.

I found that Portrait 3 was a bit difficult to build up a strong color–applied with normal brush pressure, you will get an effect similar to this:

I loved the unusual combination of these bricks with the heather blue. However, I found that the lighter brick was a bit tricky for me to pull off. Over my Laura Mercier Eye Basic used as a base, I found that these colors–although softly pigmented–did last all day. The inscription on the mirror of Portrait 3:

The Nars Andy Warhol palettes come packed with information for those unfamiliar with both makeup color placement and Andy Warhol’s art. Here’s a color look suggestion card for Portrait 3:

There is a multi-page booklet that points out some of the background influences of the collection:

Overall, my strong preference from these three is Portrait 2. It has, by far, my favorite texture and highly wearable colors. Of all six Nars Andy Warhol eyeshadow palettes, my favorite is Flowers 3.

Nars provided these palettes to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

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Sep 242012
 

Perricone MD is currently celebrating its 15th year making patented skincare products. Previously, I’ve reviewed the Perricone MD Vitamin C Ester 15, which I am still enjoying (I bought the auto-renew program). I’ve also been given the chance to try the new Perricone MD Formula 15 ($125/2 oz.).

Perricone MD Formula 15 is a combination cocktail of a number of ingredients developed by Dr. Perricone to provide a synergistic effect. First off, let me say that I saw a noticeable difference in my skin about an hour after I first applied it. Although my testing is in the early stages (only a few days), I’m really impressed. The primary effective ingredients are:

Alpha Lipoic Acid: An antioxidant which improves the skin’s resilience, tone, an texture, while improving radiance and clarity.

DMAE (dimethylaminoethenol): increases the firmness of skin, allowing sagging skin to look more tightened and toned. It addresses the loss of firmness and lessens the appearance of lines and wrinkles.

Phos E: A proprietary blends of phospholipids that provides nutrition and antioxidants to the skin to increase radiance and protect and hydrate skin. This helps stressed, dry, or dehydrated skin.

Tocotrienols: Superior forms of Vitamin E to nourish and repair damaged skin and to give a rosy glow. These improve the skin’s overall health.

I’ve been curious about trying Perricone MD’s DMAE as a topical ever since I watched this 3-minute video:

After trying Formula 15 for just a short time, I found my skin was tighter, more toned, more even textured and more radiant. It seemed to shave off several years, giving me a healthy looking, natural glow. At the same time, the product absorbed beautifully into my skin without leaving any heavy residue–there is a light texture and a very pleasant, citrus-like scent.

I was surprised to see such a visible difference in my skin, particularly because I already use high-quality skin care. There is certainly something very effective in Formula 15 that my skin had been missing. Because these formulas are patented, it is quite unlikely that I will find them anywhere else.

Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

If you find your skin needs a little freshening tighten and glow, Perricone MD is definitely worth trying. It’s due to ship beginning in October.

Application tip: Smooth evenly on cleansed skin in the morning, follow with a moisturizer.

 Perricone MD sent Formula 15 to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

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Sep 232012
 

Liz in Andy Warhol Style
Made with D.I.Y. Pop/ Warhol app for iPad

As promised, here is a quick swatch comparison of the background taupe and the highlight whites from all three NARS Andy Warhol Flowers palettes. To my eye, they all look the same. Any differences that you see are likely attributable to slight differences in brush pressure, lighting or the like. In sun:

 In shade:

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