Dec 262012

Chanel Raffainment1a

Chanel Spring 2013 brings us the Chanel Raffinement Eye Shadow quad ($58 /.24 oz). This is a well-pigmented, very smooth, neutral palette themed with a touch of mauve. This includes a light, wearable cream toned highlight, a soft heather taupe, a pretty mauve-gold, and a deep brown-burgundy liner color.

Chanel Raffainement2

Chanel Raffinement has a remarkably smooth texture, and is ideal for those looking for a neutral palette with a touch of cooler colors. Those with pink-cool skin tones will love this, although those with warmer skin tones can wear it easily as well.

Chanel Raffainement3

Liz and I found this very easy and wearable. If this were 2005,  I’d say this is a “must have.” Now, I’d say this is definitely worth considering. The quality is smooth and excellent, and Chanel Raffinement is a pleasure to use. At the same time, there are so many high end neutral choices–take a look at The Beauty Look Book’s comparison post for some examples. Also, Edward Bess’ Over the Moon has similar cool tones although it has an overall deeper-toned impression. Swatches of Chanel Raffinement:

Chanel Raffainement11

Comparisons with Chanel Raffinement and Tom Ford Enchanted eyeshadows are here. Here are some pictures of an eye look that Liz did with Chanel Rafinnement. Here, she used the bottom left as a base color, then placed the upper left color in the crease. She also barely touched the liner color in the crease (this liner color is very pigmented).

Chanel Raffinement look1

Another (you can see she went deeper with the crease colors on the right side, so you can see some variation and versatility of the quad:

Chanel Raffinement look3

One more:

Chanel Raffinement look4

There’s also a nice tutorial on Temptalia’s site using CHanel Raffinement. Overall, I’m glad that I have Chanel Raffinement. Essentially, it’s a lighter version of Chanel Kaska Beige, which I thought was a very lovely palette (again, The Beauty Look Book has comparison swatches). I love neutral palettes that bring light to the eye. Admittedly, this is an indefinable quality, yet Chanel seems to hit the mark with Raffinement.

This post contains affiliate links (please see “About Cafe Makeup” for more information).

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Aug 162011

Chanel Eyeshadow Quad in Lagons ($57 #29 Chanel Les 4 Ombres/ Ombres a Paupieres Quatuor) was released with Chanel’s Sophisticated Eye Collection.  Its counterpart was released in Asia and Europe earlier this year, although in the baked formula.  This most recent release of Lagons has the familiar soft and pigmented texture designed for sale in the U.S.  Each color pan has a soft shimmery effect that gives a dreamy blue effect.

There is no true white or cream in Chanel Lagons, all the tones are shades of blue:

  • Top left:  A lightly shimmered sky blue
  • Top right:  A more intensely shimmered medium slate/ heather blue
  • Bottom left:  An intense midnight blue with subtle sparkle
  • Bottom right: An intensely shimmered medium blue with visible clear microsparkle
Here is the promotional image released with the European collection, which shows the dreamy blue effect of Lagons:

These colors are sophisticated.  Although they can be applied intensely, Chanel manages to make this all-blue quad look appropriate on a woman.  The texture is excellent–it is creamy and melts into the skin.

Here is a comparison with Chanel Bleu Celestes (#92):


I’m not a fan of blue eyeshadows, and an entire palette of them is not something that I would have explored.  My eyes are blue-green, and my skin-tone is warm.  Somehow, these colors do not fight with my natural eye color.  Although the blue looks slightly more dramatic on my warm skintone compared to a beiges and browns, the colors are flattering.  These colors have a subtle little kick.

If you love blues, you’ll love Lagons.  If you don’t like blues, you might consider Lagons if you have a counter nearby.  It is the most friendly blue eyeshadow quad that I have seen in a while.  Highly wearable, dreamy blues don’t come my way everyday.

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Jul 132011

Le Blanc de Chanel includes the Rose Envolée Quadra Eye Shadow Palette ($57/ # 31), in the baked formula.  This should not be surprising, given that this collection was formulated for a non-U.S. market and imported for the Nordstrom Anniversary sale this year.

 Chanel Rose Envolée includes:

  • A shimmery white highlight color
  • A sheer soft pink/peach
  • A bright, pigmented pink that is very cool and has a lot of blue.
  • A deep cranberry with microshimmer (liner)

I was not sure what to expect from Rose Envolée.  I do not own many pink eyeshadows, and do not tend to think that a cool pink on the eye area is flattering.  Also, very light shades on the eye can look dated unless one is very careful.

I was pleasantly surprised.  I used the deep cranberry as a liner, which is a very flattering color.  I then swept the light pink/peachy tone all over the lid.  I touched my brow bone and socket with the white shade.  I touched the deep blue-pink on my lid.  I did get some fall-out from this baked formula in the process, but found that the texture was otherwise quite creamy.

I then let the color sit for a few hours—in fact, I went to the gym and ran errands in the summer heat for a few hours.  When I returned, I really liked what I saw.

Except for the liner color, these colors have a luminous transparency that adds a brightening tone to the lid.  The pink-peachy tone is transparent enough, so that it adds a veil of brightening color.  I suppose I should not have been surprised, given that the theme of this collection is Le Blanc de Chanel, and it was introduced with a number of brightening skin care and foundation products.  I really, really love it. In truth, it made me very curious about the foundation and skincare items released with Le Blanc that were not sold in the U.S. as part of the Nordstrom sale (see Iris’ review here)

There is something about the texture of this eyeshadow that allows it to look very fresh and modern.  I’m not entirely sure whether I’ll successfully integrate the cool pink, but otherwise Rose Envolée is a win, win, WIN for this pale-toned makeup lover.  If you are near a Nordstrom, I strongly encourage you to try it.  I was quite surprised that relying on three of these colors gave me a very youthful, fresh and very delicate look.

You can see Sabrina’s review of this palette here at The Beauty Look Book.

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Apr 272011

Chanel Fluers d’Ete Summer 2011 collection includes the eyeshadow quad Lilium ($57) (#32 Les 4 Ombres a Paupieres Quatour/ Quadra Eye Shadow). Although two of the colors are medium-to-dark toned, the texture of the shadow is sheer, light and shimmery.  Applied, this gives an impression of a shimmery watercolor effect, more similar to the colors in a Claude Monet painting.

All of the four colors are shimmery and sheer when applied dry.  These colors have microsparkle that does appear on the lid when applied.  As with other Chanel eyeshadow quads, the colors are more intense when used wet:

  • A shimmery, sheer light pink
  • A very light, soft green
  • A very pretty cool medium-toned taupe (this looks gorgeous alone)
  • A deep very blue-toned green

The colors last easily when used over a base (for my testing, I used Urban Decay Primer Potion, which I happened to use because it was convenient.  I’m sure others would work equally well or better).

Swatches (applied dry):

Because I have blue-green eyes, I approached Lilium with some trepidation.  Usually, green eyeshadows on green eyes are not the best choice.  Fortunately, the green in Lilium has enough deep blue that the color is workable, especially applied wet as a liner.  I found that I liked the following combination best:

  • The light pink from lash line to brow as a highlighter/ base shade
  • Taupe all over the lid as a wash, and smudged lightly under the eye
  • The deep blue-green used wet as a liner

Here is Liz using the combination that she devised–the pink all over from lash line to brow, and the light green in the outer corner up to the crease:

Chanel’s Summer 2011 collection also includes a duo, Khaki-Discret, which I’ll review tomorrow.  In case you are wondering, the overall impression of the two palettes is completely different.  Particularly because Chanel has released a number of greens over the past few years, I thought it helpful to include a comparison of them for you to see:

Overall, Lilium is a pleasant and workable quad for fair toned Chanel lovers.  It’s very pretty–the light and sheer colors are designed to bring light and depth to the eye.  Those looking for deep or dramatic effects should keep looking–the colors apply sheerly, shimmery and with a touch of sparkle.  As you can see on Liz’s photo, we both enjoy lighter tones on the eye to add a touch of color and light without looking too heavy.  Whether because of eye shape, coloring, or taste, I find that opaque deeper colors on my eye have to be used carefully and so I’m unlikely to use these shades wet (except as a liner).  This quad will not be for everyone, but for those looking for a pleasant spring quad it is definitely worth a look.

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