Nov 302014
 

MAC Concealer1MAC released the Matchmaster Concealer ($21) several weeks ago. According to the line:

A colour-true concealer that provides medium buildable coverage with a natural satin finish. Formulated with the same Shade Intelligence Technology as our Matchmaster line, this colour-true formula lasts for up to eight hours. Helps conceal and correct the look of under eye circles and discolourations. Comes in a convenient portable stick. 

This can be found at Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, Macy’s and other MAC sources. I purchased 1.5, which is seems like a good match for my MAC NC15 skin tone.

MAC Concealer2 copyThis highly packable format makes it ideal for travel (no TSA baggie needed!), or for your daily makeup bag for touchups.This has a pigment-rich texture, which means that you get high coverage while using a thin layer of product. I found that this works well for the under eye area. It tends to stay where it is placed, meaning that this doesn’t migrate into fine lines. Also, because this gives excellent coverage without using much product, I can cover my under eye area without caking up. MAC Matchmaster Concealer does not advertise any moisturizing properties, and it does not appear to have any based on my experience either. However, there is no shortage of fabulous moisturizers in the world, so that can be added separately. This had great lasting time–really, all day coverage.

MAC Concealer4 copyMAC Matchmaster Concealer is dual-purpose–it gives great coverage for any discolored area of the face. Any redness around the nose, or dark spots, can be blended away with a wave of the wand. I’m sure the more talented readers can use one of the deeper toned colors as a natural contour.

MAC Matchmaster Concealer copyIngredient list:
MAC Concealer5Overall, this mid-priced concealer is a nice addition if you are looking for a highly pigmented concealer that does not cake up. For the record, the coverage of MAC’s Matchmaster is not as dense as Laura Mercier High Coverage Concealer or the Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer. A completely subjective assessment puts the coverage of MAC Matchmaster a bit higher than the liquid MAC Pro Longwear. However, not everyone needs bullet-proof. MAC Matchmaster offers a quite natural-looking option that seems to blend beautifully onto the skin and with liquid foundations.

This can be found at Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, Macy’s and other MAC sources.

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May 202014
 

Laura Mercier Concealer1My finger has been hovering over the “order” button for Laura Mercier’s High Coverage Concealer for Under Eye ($28) since the first introduction. Laura Mercier’s Flawless Face includes some excellent concealers. Who are we kidding, she really excels in that department. I have under eye circles, as well as other areas that I usually cover so that I can wear a lightweight foundation. I waited to buy until I could see the colors in person, and I’m still not entirely sure that I chose the right shade. This post is an overview of the formula, but the jury’s still out on the color shades. I ultimately bought shade 1.5 for my MAC NC15/ Chanel Cameo/Ivoire skin tone. My skin leans warm and fair, and I chose shade 1.5 as an excellent match to the rest of my face. I almost added shade 2.5, a medium warm shade, and will likely pick that one up on my next trip in.

Laura Mercier Concealer3

I did a few in-house tries with this. After I got used to the formula, I  worn this concealer for three days–once entirely alone, a second time over moisturizer (Shiseido) with Giorgio Armani Master Color Corrector in 02 Orange ($39), and a third time using the moisturizer, Armani Color Corrector combined with Urban Decay Anti-Aging Primer Potion ($24) using the method described here. I did not try using this with a powder over the top. Because of my travel schedule, these three days spanned dry, warm weather in Northern California, and slightly more humid, temperate temperatures on the East Coast.

Laura Mercier Concealer6

The concealer is described as follows by the line: “This formula features honey and vitamin E to protect against environmental stressors, and fruit acid to nourish and calm skin.” My thoughts are as follows–first, you need far, far less of this product that you would imagine. The tiniest tiniest bit is too much. It took me a few tries to get used to the high level of pigment in this formula, before I could wear it outside for the day. During my first try, I used the same amount as I would use for Lancome Effacernes, That was way, way too much–honestly, I could have covered my entire face with that small amount. To say “a little goes a long way” really understates the situation.

Laura Mercier Concealer5Straight from the tube, the texture feels a bit dry and thick especially if you are used to Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer. Straight out of the tube, using too much of the product looks like this:

Laura Mercier Concealer7b

So, don’t use this much!  After the product is warm and blended, it really does come to life. This product really did not fade at all on me throughout the day. In fact, I’ve never used a concealer that holds its coverage as long as this one does. Using an under eye primer for longevity did not deliver any advantages–I’m going to skip that step next time.

The product’s skin care ingredients–while not affirmatively moisturizing–did make my under eye area appear flattened (meaning non-puffy) and slightly more youthful throughout the day. Mind, this is not (and does not claim to be)  an anti-aging skincare serum. Still, the skin in my under eye area just looked better, and it kept that look throughout the entire day. Unlike the Nars concealer, however, the Laura Mercier does not feel as affirmatively moisturizing. I’d advise a good separate moisturizer when using this product.

The one curious and consistent problem I had was ever-so-slight creasing (whether using a moisturizer or not). Having said that, the overall coverage was still excellent even after sweeping away the creasing. This stuff just does not give up–it’s relentless. Here’s a picture with the product buffed and blended:

Laura Mercier High Coverage Concealer blended1Finally, although this covers beautifully, I think that my slightly blue under eye circles really do need a touch of color correction. The area looked much better on the days I wore the Armani Master Color Corrector underneath the product. I may be able to solve this another way–by trying a slightly deeper shade of the Laura Mercier’s High Coverage Concealer for Under Eye. Speaking just for me, sometimes going a bit deeper  helps erase those blue tones as well as a corrector. That’s the reason that I’m going back and forth on the shades.

Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

Laura Mercier Concealer2

Overall, I’m pleased with Laura Mercier’s latest offering. I’m going to keep playing with the product to see whether a powder may help the slight creasing issue that I have. The texture is a bit surprising, very pigmented and highly tenacious. Absolutely worth a look.

Available at Nordstrom, Sephora,  Neiman Marcus,  Saks Fifth Avenue, and Macys.

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Feb 222013
 

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer3a

Earlier this week, I posted my swatches of Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, which is now available for $28 on Nars website. These just appeared on the Nordstrom.com website and will be released to all other stores after March 1, 2013.

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer5

 Since Monday, I’ve been testing the colors in my skin color range. Note that I’ve been applying the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer over an undereye moisturizer and serum. I am usually the lightest shade in any concealer range, except for Lancome Effernances. For Nars, I found that Honey and Custard were the best colors for my NC15/20 skin. I found that Honey worked best to neutralize the blue tone under my eye, so I’ve been using that one the most. Chantilly is very, very light. I found Vanilla too cool, and it gave me a ghosty look under my eyes. (I took seriously the advice that one shouldn’t wear concealers that are too light for one’s skin tone).

Nars Honey

I know what you are thinking, Gorgeous–Honey looks too dark in the tube for someone as fair as NC15/20. I say, well, when I apply it, and tilt my head up so that the light is absolutely even on my face, it looks like a good match and covers my dark circles. It looks natural, like real skin.

Nars honey and custard

Although in theory, Custard might seem to match with my skin tone, I found that Custard honestly didn’t cancel out the blue under my eyes quite as well as Honey. Although I’d want to do more testing on this point, perhaps I’d need to use a peach corrector if I was stuck on using Custard. So, after this week, Honey was the win for me–it looked the most natural with the best coverage for the final effect.

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer2

I have high standards for concealers. In my mind, even companies that include Chanel don’t make a concealer that I find satisfying. I’ve used so many concealers that I couldn’t even begin to count them. Here are some additional thoughts:

  • Nars Radiant Creamy concealers are quite pigmented. I didn’t need much (a few light dots) to get full coverage. Use much less than a full doe-foot’s worth.
  • After the first day, I stopped using a corrector underneath. I found that the Bobbi Brown Corrector that I had used was interfering with the longevity of the Nars Radiant Creamy, and the coverage of the Nars Honey was fine without it.
  • Fading was really minimal, even compared to some of the longer lasting concealers that I’ve used (including Estee Lauder Double Wear Concealer, Cle de Peau, and others).
  • Because the pigment can be applied in a very thin layer, I found these less dry-looking and aging compared to any other concealer that I’ve used. Even my beloved Burberry and Cle de Peau seem to look a bit aging on my worst, driest-skin days.
  • Nars Radiant Creamy Concealers are more pigmented than the Armani Maestro Concealers that I’ve tried.
  • The Nars works well on imperfections on the face (I use this under my foundation). I doesn’t have the shiny look that some concealers do that can emphasize problems.

Bottom line:  Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer is a truly great concealer.

Now available on Nars website, Nordstrom.com and everywhere else after March 1st.

Nars Cosmetics provided the Radiant Creamy Concealer 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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Feb 172013
 

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer1

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer ($28) is set to release any day now, available first on Nars online and in Nars flagship boutiques. These have just appeared on the Nordstrom.com website  and will be everywhere else around March 1st). Cafe Makeup was sent a packet of samples, and so we are posting our swatches so that you can be ready to choose.

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer2

 Nars Radiant Creamy Concealers are gloriously pigmented and feel moisturizing. According to the company, these are “luxuriously smooth with hydrating skincare benefits.”  They are intended for use undereye, as well as for other skin imperfections. This “multi-action formula provides medium to high buildable coverage in a natural, radiant finish with long-lasting results.” Having just torn open the envelope to cries of “ooooh pretty!”, we haven’t done all-day stress-testing but we plan to do so this week.

On to the colors:

CHANTILLY: True ivory shade for fairest complexions

VANILLA: Tiny cast of pink for the fair complexion

HONEY: Warm peach tone for light to medium complexion

CUSTARD: Yellow tone for light to medium complexion

GINGER: Golden undertone for medium complexion

BISCUIT: Medium dark natural balance of pink and yellow undertones

CARAMEL: Medium dark yellow and golden undertones

AMANDE: Medium dark with golden olive undertones

CAFÉ: Dark shade with warm red undertones

CACAO: Dark shade with deep gold-brown undertones

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer3a

Swatches of all shades:

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer4

 Another (same order):

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer5

The Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer are available on Nars online and in Nars flagship boutiques. These have just appeared on the Nordstrom.com website  and will be everywhere else after March 1st.

We’ll post a separate review when we’ve tested these more. In the meantime, here’s a quick video from Nars about using their products:

Cafe Makeup received these samples without charge from Nars for consideration for review. This post includes an affiliate link (see About Cafe Makeup for more information)

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Feb 142013
 

RadiantCreamyConcealer_lo

NARS is releasing its new NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer line on February 20th on Narscosmetics.com and at NARS flagship boutiques (everywhere else on March 1).  We’ve seen this used in a few of Nars backstage work during New York Fashion Week for Fall 2013 over the past week, finally it is being released to all.

According to NARS:

Ideal for all skin types, new NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer boasts a luxuriously smooth texture enriched with hydrating skincare benefits. When applied to camouflage darkness under the eyes and reduce the appearance of redness and skin imperfections, the multi-action formula provides medium to high buildable coverage in a natural, radiant finish with long-lasting results. A single stroke keeps complexion looking fresh and creaseless all day – going on smoothly and blending easily. Light diffusing technology blurs imperfections and fine lines, and evens skin tone without masking skin’s natural coloring. Skin glows with new radiance over or under foundation – and looks beautiful even when bare.

Perfect as a complement to Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF30 or layered with Sheer Matte & Sheer Glow Foundation. Crease-proof. Long-wear. Non-comedogenic. Dermatologist tested. Paraben-free. Alcohol-free. Fragrance-free.

Nars Concealer

Color range:

CHANTILLY: True ivory shade for fairest complexions

VANILLA: Tiny cast of pink for the fair complexion

HONEY: Warm peach tone for light to medium complexion

CUSTARD: Yellow tone for light to medium complexion

GINGER: Golden undertone for medium complexion

BISCUIT: Medium dark natural balance of pink and yellow undertones

CARAMEL: Medium dark yellow and golden undertones

AMANDE: Medium dark with golden olive undertones

CAFÉ: Dark shade with warm red undertones

CACAO: Dark shade with deep gold-brown undertones

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

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