Jan 312014
 

Narsissist Palette16

I’m posting this just to let you know that the Nars Narsissist Palette is up for sale on Nordstrom.com (reviewed here). Given that this sold out quickly on the Nars website, please do not wait to order this may sell out  fast elsewhere.

Narsissist Palette01

Also, on a personal note, I’m undertaking some important personal projects at the moment. Cafe Makeup should be ready to post more frequently after February 10, 2014.  Thank you so much for your understanding.

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Jan 252014
 

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation1

Guerlain has repackaged and reformulated its iconic permanent line of Meteorites. I tried the new Guerlain Meteorites in Clair #2 ($60) (available here from Nordstrom, here from Sephora).  If you are new to the product, Guerlain Meteorties are a vanity-display-worthy container of color correcting finishing powders. Guerlain explains this concept in a more elevated tone:

A subtle blend of matte, rosy and radiant blue-toned white pearls, combined with corrective coloured pearls – yellow to counter redness, pink for freshness and mauve to catch the light – they light up the face in an illuminating and corrective halo to give endless radiance.

I have loved all of the previous powders beyond reason. I have long thought that there are not true “dupes” of the colors. I actually liked the subtle violet scent (which this updated version retains). Perhaps some of their more beautiful meteorites are in their limited edition range, and so it was with some trepidation that I approached this new reformulation.

Guerlain Meteroites new formulationa1

The new packaging is beautiful, the design is updated, delicate and simplified. This lightweight metal product is pretty, although still not extending into the “travel friendly” category (Guerlain makes meteorites compacts for those purposes).

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation4

The container comes with a soft flocked padded sponge, which keeps the little meteorites in their place. The color-correcting, illuminating powders are inside:

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation5

The new reformulation is said to be “softer” in texture, meaning that it is easier to pick up on a brush. I found that these new reformulations are in fact much softer. Indeed, I found that a few meteorites had slight breakage, and there was a pool of loose powder on the bottom of the container that had collected (perhaps during the shipment process). Some of the perles had chipped at bit. The entire contents:

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation6

You can see some of the powder in the open jar as it sits on its side:

Guerlain Meteroites new1 copy2

Certainly this loose residue is still usable as a powder, although it seems to defeat the purpose of the meteorites concept.  I found that I could not use the same powder brush as I have with the prior version on the unbroken perles.  The application was too “white” and heavy. I’ve had to switch to a duo-fibre brush (Chanel’s version of the MAC 187).

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation7

I am thinking of trying the bronzier-toned Guerlain Meteorites in Dore, as a soft bronzer along the lines of the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow #30 powders. Then again, the Chanel Les Beiges is working out so beautifully, comes in a travel-friendly compact, and gives me a beautiful finish. So I’m reluctant to mess with success. After I swept the little meteorites back into their container, the below image shows the residue that was left. Some powder was knocked off during shipment and came from the container during the spill, and some from handling during the spilling and sweeping.  Although I tried to handle these gently, this should indicate my experience with how soft these new meteorites are.

Guerlain Meteroites new formulation8

I trust Guerlian’s powder products so much–they truly understand the concept of finely milled on an entirely different level. These are beautifully formulated, but it will take me some adjustment to learn how to apply this new reformulation properly so that it compliments my skin. I’ve heard different criticisms of the prior version, such as that the effect was too subtle, or that the price point was too high to be justified by the effect. But I had not heard that the prior version wasn’t soft enough. Guerlain thought differently, and they are certainly in a better position than I am to understand and respond to customer feedback.

By reader request, here is an image of the ingredient list. I’ve amped up the contrast because the original box has subtle printing which is hard for me to read/photograph for a blog.  Click to enlarge:

guerlain ingredient list meteorites1

My sense is that, if were not a beauty blogger trying to understand the newest and latest, I would have continued using my existing Meteorites. In the meantime, I am wondering whether the new version of the Guerlain limited edition lines will use this new format as well. If you’ve heard anything, please feel free to share in the comments.

Available here from Nordstromhere from Sephora.

This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

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Jan 212014
 

Nars Adelaide04

NARS Final Cut collection includes a new shimmering, sparkling illuminator called NARS Adelaide Illuminator ($3o), a cool lavendar pink with a transparent glitter. Unless you use the very tiniest bit on the upper cheekbone, NARS Adelaide is a color for the confident wearer. Be ready to be noticed–this is a stunning, glamorous shade.

Nars Adelaide02 copy

Like the other NARS Illuminators, Adelaide has an easily blended texture applies with a weightless feel. No tackiness, no oiliness, no messing around. Like a good luxury product, this is done right. Unlike the other shades in the line, NARS Adelaide is more opaque in its color. Although it can be sheered down and mixed with other textures, the decidedly cool cast and stronger color of this shade sets it apart. This means that it mixes well with foundations, but it will darken and add a strong candy pink cast to the foundation. In addition, Adelaide will  suffuse it with both glow and rich micro-sparkle. For that reason, I suspect that most will use this as a stunning upper cheek highlighter for evening, or even for beachy days. It’s a fresh color shade, but not for the wallflower. Someone who loves Adelaide does not mind a bit of attention.

NARS Adelaide highlighter

Here’s an arm swatch of Nars Adelaide alone, below. This is going to look fabulous on tanned skin.

Nars Adelaide06

NARS Adelaide fits in well with the rest of the Nars Final Cut collection. Here, you can see a little different angle of Nars Adelaide next to swatches of NARS Villa Lante and Nars Stourhead Lip Pencils:

Nars Adelaide11

Here, Liz applied Nars Adelaide over Nars Final Cut blush to add a little glow:

NARS Final cut Blush1a with Adelaide Illuminator

Here is Nars Adelaide on the upper cheek over Nars Sex Fantasy blush (applied heavily):

NARS S Fantasty Blush2 with Adelaide Illuminator

Overall, Nars Adelaide is a standout shade for those who love to stand out. It fits well within the cool lavender trend that we’re seeing from other lines, perhaps a more sophisticated version of Benefit’s Lollitint. Nars Adelaide also fits well within the entire Nars Final Cut series of fresher, more modern colors for Spring 2014. NARS Adelaide’s texture is beautiful, sparkling and very rich in tone.

Nars sent Adelaide to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup).

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Jan 202014
 

NARS Final Cut Blush08aThe release of a new NARS blush is always cause for celebration, especially when it is wearable and beautiful. NARS Final Cut collection includes four new blushes–in Final Cut, New Attitude, Love and Sex Fantasy ($29 each). I’m overwhelmed, delighted, and happy to share our thoughts about them.

NARS Final Cut Blush10a

This lovely set of highly wearable shades mirrors the Nars Final Cut Satin Lip Pencils (reviewed here), and of course they look lovely when coordinated together. Yet these blushes are universal in their appeal, and should coordinate nicely with numerous types of makeup combinations. These brightening, fresh shades are a beautiful addition to our Spring calendar, but honestly they are so universal and gorgeous they should work year round.

NARS Final Cut Blush03

Nars Love blush ($29) is called “tea rose.” In my mind, it’s a soft misty rose, with a touch of gray and mauve. It’s one of those universal shades that looks amazing applied softly with a strong lip, or built up for a slightly bolder cheek.  Here is Nars Love on Liz (over foundation and Tom Ford Gold Dust Bronzer, with Nars Stourhead on her lips):

NARS Love Blush1

NARS New Attitude ($29) is a “cherry blossom pink.” It is a lovely, build able color that amps up nicely for a clear, beautiful pink with a hint of red. This looks a bit cool, but this is far softer and more neutral than some cooler NARS blushes (such as Angelica).

Nars New Attitude1

Here is New Attitude on Liz (she’s wearing the Guerlain Les Tendres eyeshadow quad on her lid):

NARS New Attitude Blush3a

NARS Final Cut blush is peach coral. This is a color that looks lovely with warm tones, including mixing well with bronzers. Surprisingly, these shades can play well with some reds.

NARS Final Cut Blush07

Here is Nars Final Cut on Liz:

nars blush swatches second try2

Like the NARS Stourhead lip pencil, NARS Sex Fantasy is a cool light pink. Although this shade kicked up some dust when we dipped our Hakuhodo brush into it, we found that the application was smooth and beautiful.  NARS Sex Fantasy is the most lightly pigmented on the Final Cut group, but the color is quite build able for a stronger, cool uber-light pink.

NARS Final Cut Blush01a

NARS Sex Fantasy is the type of color that you are quite sure exists somewhere, but then when you go to find it there doesn’t seem to be anything around. Thankfully, NARS keeps these edgy, rule-breaking colors available. NARS Sex Fantasy reminds me of a pink version of light peachy NARS Sex Appeal. On some, this will be quite subtle.  Here it is on Liz applied very heavily so that we could get some of the cool pink color. She really worked in quite a bit of product here, much much more than would be typical. Despite our heavy application, and the powder dust that our brush kicked up, the application looks quite nice and smooth.

nars blush swatches second try1b

Like a dozen roses, NARS Final Cut has brought out some beautiful, brightening shades. This gorgeous collection is currently available on Nordstom.com, and will be available on Nars online site and Nars boutiques beginning March 1, 2014.

NARS Cosmetics provided Sex Fantasy, Love, and New Attitude to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post includes affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

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Jan 202014
 

Nars Final Cut pencils overview1

NARS has introduced an extensive collection for Spring 2014. Part of this is the Final Cut collection, which includes four satin lip pencils–Stourhead, Villa Lante, Descanso, and Torres del Paine ($25 each). The satin formula leaves a glowy finish, with more shine than a matte but not as much as a gloss. These are all nicely pigmented, and applied evenly and smoothy. These are available February 1, 2014 at Nordstrom and beginning March 1, 2014 at NARS boutiques, and on narscosmetics.com.

Nars Final Cut pencils overview2

As with all NARS satin pencils, these are encased in black wood and come with tenacious little black caps.

Stourhead is a light cool pink, called a “pale lavender pink”

Villa Lante is a medium bright fresh pink, called a “cherry blossom pink”

Torres des Plaine is a bright peach coral

Descanso is “tea rose,” in my view a grayed-down soft peachy terracotta

Swatches:

NARS Final Cut Pencils swatches more1

Another set:

NARS Final Cut Pencils swatches1

Although some of these seemed right for Spring and Summer, we found some were lovely for year-round wear.

Nars Final Cut pencils1

Surprisingly, Descanto was a favorite for Liz and I. We loved its sophisticated tone that made it appropriate for our coloring for almost every occasion.

NARS Final Cut Pencils2

Descanso on Liz:

Nars Descanso1a

Torres del Paine is slightly brighter and with a flush of red throughout the subdued color.

NARS Torres del Paine1

Torres del Paine on Liz:

Nars Torres Del Paine on lips1b

Villa Lante won our hearts as a beautiful medium pink:

NARS Final Cut Pencils3 copy

Villa Lante on Liz:

NARS Final Cut Pencils8a

Stourhead is perhaps the most unusual of the set.  The light lavendar is fresh and fun, but won’t be for everyone or every occassion.

Nars Stourhead1b

Stourhead–as a pastel color– tended to be a little difficult because of its light tone.

NARS Final Cut Pencils6a

Overall, we were really pleased with this fresh set of pencils. Our favorites were Descanso and Villa Lante.  These pencils–Stourhead, Villa Lante, Descanso, and Torres del Paine are available February 1, 2014 at Nordstrom and beginning March 1, 2014 at NARS boutiques, and on narscosmetics.com.

Nars Cosmetics sent these pencils to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

 

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