Feb 202014
 

Nars spring items07

We have a few more Nars Spring 2014 items to review, so we’re doing a consolidated post for the following:

First up, Bimini Larger Than Life Lipgloss is a sheer orange shimmer.

Nars spring items02 copy

On Liz:

Nars spring feb 2011 copy

Annees Folles is a sheer cool lavendar shimmer with a high gloss finish.

Nars Purple gloss3 copy

This gloss has a brightening effect:

NARS SPRING 14 lip purple2

Swatches of Bimini and Annees Folles:

Nars spring items05 copy

Timanfaya Satin Lip Pencil is a bright statement orange with a glowing finish:

Nars spring items06 copy

On Liz:

Nars spring oranges2

Liz played with layering Timanfaya lip pencil and Bimini lip gloss, which gave her an intense statement lip:

Nars spring oranges3 copy

I really loved the new Na Pali Coast Multiple. Although it’s easy to overlook this one among the variety of winning products from Nars this year, you really shouldn’t. Na Pali Coast has a gorgeous sheen and just a touch of red, which looks amazing and sun-kissed when applied.

Nars spring items09

Here is a swatch of Na Pali Coast, together with some of the coordinating lip products:

Nars spring items11

Overall, these are all excellent quality. If these colors are something that appeal, you really should check them out. Our favorites are the Na Pali Coast Multiple and Bimini Larger Than Life Lip Gloss–both are beautiful, brightening and elegant colors for Spring.

Available at Nordstrom.com, Barney’s, Nars Cosmetics and other sources.

Nars Cosmetics provided these products 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 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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Jan 152014
 

MAC Huggables Overview1

There are two times every year when MAC attracts my laser focus–once during the summer for their baked collections, and right after the Holiday when a beautiful neutral collection is released. This year, MAC added a new formula lipstick collection–called MAC Huggables ($20 each)–to the post-Holiday excitement. As is typical of MAC’s limited edition releases, mine are arriving in the mail just as these are selling out in stores. So I thought it best to do a quick post in case any of these catch your eye. Some are still available at Nordstrom, Macy’s, and other MAC sources.

MAC Commotion and Red Necessity1

First of all, these are packaged in a re-designed tube that reminds me of Chantecaille’s Lip Chics ($35 each). The MAC Huggables’ formula is  pigmented, sheer, shiny, and very hydrating. They have “creamy emollients to give you a lasting, glossy color that leaves your lips smooth and sculpted.” I found that my winter-dry lip lines disappeared under this very hydrating formula. For those of us who are on the “more experienced” side of the age continuum, you might give these a serious look because they are a pleasure to use.  Their relatively low price point makes them a fun addition to add a pop of color to your winter wardrobe. I found this video from Lena/senoritaxlena quite helpful in choosing my shades.

MAC Huggables Overview2 final

Here’s the other secret of the MAC Huggables–they are far more saturated than I expected. Some of the online swatches do not really show their high-pigment color. These stay glossy for quite some time, their color lasts and lasts. They feel both hydrating and a slightly tacky, although not annoyingly so.

MAC Huggables Overview5

On some, this emollient formula can feather. Although I did not experience this, it may have more to do with my lip shape more than anything. I’ve only had a chance to play with these for 2-3 days, but I did find that using a lip primer seemed to prevent any migration and added to the formula’s wear time (I used the Bite Lip Primer, but others can work). I found that using the primer did not seem to interfere with the formula’s hydrating benefits to a significant degree. Lip lines, be gone! Also, you can sort of use them as their own primer, by laying down a little bit, let it dry and then add a bit more. The lower under-layer seems to create little base of the top layer to grip onto. Another set of swatches:

MAC Huggables Overview4

The colors are really fun–they aren’t terribly complex but they do mix with your natural lip color and give a very pretty, glossy, moisturized look. Rich Marron is quickly becoming my favorite, and the pinks–Feeling Amorous?, Love Beam, and Out for Passion are great grab-and-go shades. Commotion is probably the most unusual, and the reds are a pleasant touch. Rusty is deep and dramatic, but with a sheerness that’s very pleasant. These shades are perfect not only for this moisturizing properties, but also for at least two other purposes. First they’re great for occasions when you want to wear a bright color to work or other conservative event. These don’t go “over the top.” I wore Feeling Amorous? to dinner tonight, and my husband confirmed that (despite the brightly colored swatch) the color wasn’t “too much.” Second, they are a great way to get used to wearing brighter colors and reds. For those that have never left the house in a bight lip, try one of these. A sheer will get you half-way to being a comfortable, confident wearer of any lip color out there (well, maybe not lime green, but you get the picture). One last set of swatches:

MAC Huggables Overview5

Here are the shades that I chose:

MAC Rich Marron Huggable1

Rich Marron is one of my favorites-this is a gorgeous, high-shine nude. It’s a sheerer cousin to NARS Last Tango.

 MAC Rich Marron2a

Red Necessity is a cool, sheer, high-shine red. Commotion is a fuchsia that leans violet–it can go maroon on my lips. It’s quite a dramatic, cool-toned stained glass wonder.

MAC Rich Marron Huggable two1

Feeling Amorous? is a bold (yet sheer) pink:

MAC Feeling Amorous?2

Out for Passion is a warm pink with a hint of peach:

MAC Out for Passion3

Cherry Glaze a pigmented, warm red:

MAC Cherry Glaze2

Rusty is a warm cognac-burgundy:

MAC Rusty2

Love Beam is a soft, light, sheer pink:

MAC Love Beam1

Overall, I’m really having fun with these colors. My lips looks moisturized, pretty, and always appropriate despite the brightness of these shades (although I have to be careful with MAC Commotion). Because this is a MAC limited edition collection, they are in the “get them before they’re gone” territory.

Available at NordstromMacy’s, and other MAC sources.

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

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Jan 062014
 


Spring 2014 is quickly approaching. One collection on my radar is NARS because (have you heard?) there’s a new multiple launching. The eyeshadows look fabulous as well. The details of the collection are as follows:

Rich, aquatic and anchored in glamour. The NARS Spring 2014 Collection kicks off the season with provocative appeal leaving winter in the wake. Eyes sizzle in gold lamé and iridescent smoky orchid, while cheeks glisten with a splash of shimmering rose peach. Gleaming cantaloupe for nails and a refreshingly glossy pout in guava and violet evoke a cool burning attitude with this fashion forward collection.

The items are listed with their images below.

China Seas Duo Eyeshadow ($34):  Iridescent turquoise with gold infusion and iridescent plum

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection China Seas Duo Eyeshadow - jpeg

Kauai Duo Eyeshadow ($34): Gold lamé and iridescent smokey orchid

NARS Spring 2014 Kauai Duo Eyeshadow - jpeg

Annees Folles Larger than Life Lip Gloss ($26): Sheer violet

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Annees Follies LTL Lip Gloss - JPEG

Bimini Larger than Life Lip Gloss ($26):  Sheer pink guava

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Bimini LTL Lip Gloss - JPEG

Timanfaya Satin Lip Pencil ($25):  Mandarin Red

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Timanfaya Satin Lip Pencil - jpeg

Khao Road Larger than Life Long Wear Eyeliner ($24):  Metallic aquamarine

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Khao San Road LTL LW Eyeliner - jpeg

Puerta Del Sol Larger than Life Long Wear Eyeliner ($24):  Parrot green with shimmer

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Puerta Del Sol LTL LW Eyeliner - jpeg

Wind Dancer Nail Polish ($19):  Cantaloupe

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Wind Dancer Nail Polish - jpeg

Na Pali Coast Multiple ($39):  Shimmering rose peach

NARS Spring 2014 Color Collection Na Pali Coast Multiple - jpeg

This is slated to release on Narscosmetics.com and NARS boutiques on January 15, 2014.

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Nars Guy Bourdin Fling Set Review and Swatches

 Lip Pencil, Lipgloss, Lipstick, NARS  Comments Off on Nars Guy Bourdin Fling Set Review and Swatches
Nov 012013
 

Nars Flirt01

There are some makeup products that have such outstanding concepts that they defy categorization. The NARS Fling Set ($49) for Holiday 2013 is one of those items.

Nars Flirt02 copy

First up, the set is housed in a highly re-usable molded red lip box that’s mostly genius with a dash of insanity. This outrageous, vibrant red sculpture can’t be touched by anything out there right now.

Nars Flirt03

At the widest part, the Nars Fling box measures approximately 7 inches across, so it is large enough to keep you your table for rings, hair accessories, and other necessities that require attractive storage (the outside depth is roughly 1 1/2 inches, the inside bottom depth is just over 1/2 inch. The inner lid depth for the top piece is hard to measure–the best I can do is to say that it is between 1/4 and 1/2 inch).

Although the packaging is not conservative, the lip choices are all crowd-pleasing beauties. This includes Nars Damage lipstick:

Nars Flirt11

Nars Roman Holiday:

Nars Flirt09

Nars Baroque Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil (mini) (full sized reviewed here):

Nars Flirt05

Here’s Nars Baroque from our review of the full sized version:

Nars Baroque 2

Also, the set includes the classic Nars Dolce Vita Velvet Matte Lip Pencil (mini):

Nars Flirt07

In the NARS Fling Set, the lipsticks are the full size 0.12 oz standards that we’ve come to know and love. Dolce Vita is lised as .06 oz. and Baroque is listed at 0.008 oz. As with the other lip pencils in the Promiscuous kit, these  pencils are approximately 3 1/2 inches in length. Swatches:

Nars Flirt12

For me, the selling point of this kit is the laquered box–it’s nicely made without seam lines, gloriously glossy, and indisputably fun.  The lip products are awesome, classic colors with a dash of the high-spirited Roman Holiday thrown in for good measure. All of these have the great Nars lip formula, and perfect for readying you from Winter through Spring.

Now available at Nordstrom, and soon available everywhere Nars is sold.

Nars Cosmetics sent this item 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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Oct 312013
 

Nars Promiscuous01

Like the NARS One Night Stand blush palette (have I mentioned my obsession with this palette yet?), the NARS Promiscuous Set ($45) released for Holiday 2013 will be available at Sephora exclusively (based on the materials that I’ve received). This set comes with a large cosmetic pouch, approximately  7 1/2 by 5 inches. It also happens to come with some of my favorite pencil shades from NARS incomparable line.

Nars Promiscuous02

This pouch is a tough, good quality vinyl and should provide years of use. I love a bag with a decent zipper, this one has one that is both robust and attractively integrated into the design.

Nars Promiscuous03

Unlike many lip pencils which provide a color base for lipsticks or gloss, NARS pencils of this type are meant to be used as  the main event–they are complex colors and thoughtfully designed textures used to create the lip look on their own.

Nars Promiscuous04

The NARS Promiscuous set contains mini versions of Cruella Matte Velvet, Sex Machine Velvet Matte, Dolce Vita Velvet Matte, Never Say Never Velvet Matte, and New Lover Velvet Gloss. These are some of my favorites, so I think this is a well-chosen, nicely wearable and versatile selection.

Nars Promiscuous05

Swatches of all shades:

Nars Promiscuous17

One more set:

Nars Promiscuous18

If you haven’t tried NARS pencils, the Nars Promiscuous set is a wonderful place to start. The pouch is a nice addition–the size is excellent for keeping things together in your office desk, weekend bag, the gym, or your purse for those necessary touch-ups.

Note: The Cruella, Sex Machine, Dolce Vita, and Never Say Never Pencils are listed as 0.06 oz, and New Lover as 0.08 oz in size. These measure roughly 3 3/4″ in size each.

NARS Cosmetics provided this set 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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Oct 312013
 

Nars Crime of Passion02

The NARS Crime of Passion palette ($59) packs some beautiful, highly wearable colors together in a remarkably compact space. This system is well-designed to accommodate a nice range of neutral looks, with high quality products that accommodates a wide range of skin tones and looks. This will be widely available at all Nars sources, and currently available on Nordstrom.com.

Nars Crime of Passion03

Also called the NARS ‘Guy Bourdin – Crime of Passion’ Eye, Cheek & Lip Palette, the size of NARS Crimes of Passion is a small 3 1/2″ by 3″ size, and about 1″ deep.

Nars Crime of Passion05

The top layer includes three eyeshadows, which are all new shades. First a new light shimmery Jezebel, a new metallic rose-brown Naiade, and a super pigmented black matte Pandora. There is also a mini Deep Throat Larger than Life Lip Gloss (another new shade). This layer flips up to reveal a pan of Deep Throat blush, and a Laguna Bronzing powder.

Nars Crime of Passion10

The design of the Nars Crimes of Passion set is aesthetically pleasing, functional, and efficient. And, let’s face it, these are great colors for a gorgeous, neutral look.

Nars Crime of Passion09

Inside:

Nars Crime of Passion07

Swatches of all colors:

Nars Crime of Passion13

Another:

Nars Crime of Passion15

NARS Crime of Passion is genius.  I love a good neutral palette with versatility–this is certainly a well-chosen range of classic colors that is highly wearable. I was surprised to find this treasure has such a nice range of product in such a well-packaged, compact space.

Nars Cosmetics sent this palette 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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Aug 032013
 

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer1

Marc Jacobs Beauty Lust For Lacquer Lip Vinyl ($28 each) have a high-shine formula and lovely, highly wearable color. The packaging is pure Marc Jacobs “sophisticated/fun.” The black applicator side is practical, there’s just no dropping this one with that big paddle. Still, there’s something cute and modern about it too. In other words, very Marc.

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer2

I tried two shades–the warm pink Kissability and the cool burgundy Studded Kiss. On application, there’s a sweet vanilla scent with the faintest touch of floral scent. Within about 30 seconds, the scent transforms in a breath-freshening peppermint that’s delightful. The peppermint scent lingers for a good 20-30 minutes, and gives the gloss an ever-so-slight tingle. The fun shape of the tube, the lovely color, and the scent made these slightly addictive to use. I kept reaching for them all week, I just love that touch of peppermint.

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer5

Kissability is a warm pink-rose infused with gold. This is one of those crowd-pleasing, goes-with-everything colors that can be used up because it’s such a good, staple color. It’s medium-sheer. On Liz, the color is quite sheer–her lips are lightly pigmented.

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer7

The color looks deeper and more rose on me, because my lips have more pigment. It’s my lips but better, and because of the shine it’s also my lips but wetter. Here is Liz wearing Kissability:

Marc Jacobs eye palette01

Here, Liz is wearing Kissability with:

Here are some swatches using Marc Jacobs Kissability, using other shades to orient the color among others (not as possible dupes). Burberry Nude Rose is a light cream. Nars Dolce Vita has no shimmer, and is not as pink. Chanel Paillettes is a sheer shimmery gloss.

Marc Jacobs Lip Laquer Swatches1

Studded Kiss is a pigmented burgundy infused with deep red-violet with a high-lacquer shine.

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer6

 On Liz:

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer8a

Here’s Marc Jacob’s Studded Kiss on Liz:

Marc Jacobs Lip Lacquer111

As you can see, Marc Jacobs Studded Kiss doesn’t have a duplicate in my stash. Chanel Ironic Tonic is warmer. Buberry Hibiscus is a sheer cream, with more red. Le Metier de Beaute In the Know Bordeaux is deeper and more burgundy.

Marc Jacobs lip gloss swatches1a

Overall, I loved these new Marc Jacobs Lust for Lacquer Lip Vinyls. If you are sensitive to peppermint, you’ll want to pass these by. I found them really pleasant, and kept reaching for them. I’ll definitely be looking for more now the full line is released.

This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup).  Nars Brow Gel, Dolce Vita lip gloss and Nars Realm of the Senses blush were sent to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

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Jun 262013
 

Nars Summer Shock

Nars Summer Shock 2013 includes a number of edgy products that are worth a look. The collection is available at Nars online, Nordstrom, Sephora and other Nars sources.

As an artist’s line, I always love to see Nars’ take on the cutting edge to see whether there are a few items that I might use to update my own beauty routine.

Nars summer 201301

The collection contains:

Madness Nail Polish ($19)

Paris Follies Larger Than Life Lip Gloss ($26)

Tolede Satin Lipstick ($24)

Fashion Rebel Duo Eyeshadow ($34)

Euphrate Single Eyeshadow ($24)

Puerto Vallarta Multiple ($39)

Tender Night Velvet Matte Lip Pencil (Limited Edition, $25)

Barrow Street Larger Than Life Long-Wear Eyeliner ($24)

Swatches of all products:

Nars summer 201307

Here are some thoughts on the individual products.  First, Nars Madness ($19) is a bright orange cream that is the typical, well-executed Nars formula.

Nars Madness1

 Nars Madness was the brightest of all of my oranges–here, OPI A Roll in the Hague, Nars Lal Mirchi, Deborah Lippman’s Lara’s Theme, and L’Oreal L’Orange:

Nars Summer 2013d1a

Nars Madness has a slightly less glossy finish compared to the rest (although you can add a topcoat if you prefer to do something other than this satiny finish).

Nars Paris Follies Larger Than Life Lipgloss is a sheer strawberry red:

Nars summer 201302

Liz fell in love with this one immediately, as a light, summer, easy everyday color (applied full force, although this can be patted on lightly for a soft pink):

Nars Summer gloss3

Nars Tolede Satin Lipstick ($26) is a sheer pink with a slight touch of warm coppery brown.

Nars Summer 2013e3

Nars Tolede is somewhat sheer. On Liz’s very light lips, the color applies as a soft warm pink. On my darker toned lips, the color is much darker.

Nars summer 201309

Here are some Nars Tolede comparisons with Nars Bilboa, Nars Autumn Leaves, Burberry Rosewood, and Burberry Lip Mist in Copper.

Nars Summer 2013d2

Nars Fashion Rebel is a striking yellow and violet combination.

Nars summer 201304

I have to hand it to Nars–“Fashion Rebel” is well named.

Nars summer 2013a1

On Liz, who quickly created an eye (no base, using Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush):

Nars summer 201310

I suspect with bases and layering, you could get more vibrancy. As applied here, it reminds me of a flower.

Nars summer 201306

Nars Puerto Vallarta is a shimmery soft peach cream.  It’s more subtle than some of the corals and oranges we’ve seen during the year, and would work beautifully for a subtle touch of color. Here is a comparison with Nars Puerto Vallarta (two swipes), Nars South Beach Multiple (two swipes), Nars Sex Appeal powder blush (piled on and it’s still subtle), and Chanel Frivole (2 swipes):

Nars Summer 2013f1

Tender Night Velvet Matt Lip Pencil ($25) (swatched above) is quite sheer–it is nearly invisble on my pigmented lips.

Nars Summer 2013e4

 Nars Barrow Street Larger than Life Longwear Eyeliner ($24) is a light creamy mint.

Nars Summer 2013e1

This is going to look amazing on a cool toned person as a lower waterline color, especially with Euphrates eyeshadow single on the eye and the Puerto Vallarta multiple on the cheek.

Nars Euphrate eyeshadow2a

There is a full review of my new love, the Euprhate eyeshadow single, here.

The collection is available at Nars onlineNordstromSephora and other Nars sources.

Here’s a lovely video with application suggestions:

 

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

 

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Jun 252013
 

Tatcha camillia lip balm01

Tatcha’s Gold Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm ($36/ 0.28 oz.) (available here on Tatcha’s website and Barney’s New York) is a best-in-class, luxury lip balm. The texture is quite moisturizing, the presentation elegant and the ingredients are pure, beautiful and simple.

Tatcha camillia lip balm03a This little treasure comes with a nice touch. Once the understated box is opened, and the little drawer pulled out, you will see a letter that describes the product’s heritage on artisan paper.

Tatcha camillia lip balm12

The jar is a heavy glass with a plastic lid. Inside, you can see a thin sheet of 24 karat gold that lends a beautiful touch to the presentation.

Tatcha camillia lip balm07

 Once opened, one dips in.  Go ahead. It’s an amazing product and meant to be enjoyed. The instructions read:

Scoop a small amount of the lip balm, tearing part of the gold leaf. Gently dab onto lips, allowing the gold to crush and create a subtle gleam.

 Tatcha camillia lip balm11

Once the gold sheet is broken, the gold mixes in with the product and essentially dissolves into the luxurious clear balm underneath.

Tatcha camillia lip balm13

The balm has a slight natural floral scent that has a touch of woodsy lemon. It’s gorgeous and fresh, very sophisticated.  It makes my lips feel really amazing–soft, moisturized. The balm has enough weight to last for a very long time.  It’s a lovely conditioner. 

Bottom line–Tatcha Gold Camellia Nourishing Lip Balm is an elegant treat. It’s large enough to last, and luxurious enough to use everyday (or evening for an overnight treatment). Love.

Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

Tatcha camillia lip balm02

This product was sent to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains an affiliate link (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup).

 

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