Apr 182011

Diorskin Nude Glow Healthy Glow Summer Powder in Aurora ($46 #001), has been reviewed by Cafe Makeup here and here. As you’ll recall, this is a gorgeously textured Summer 2011 bronzer that has a touch of pinky peach.

We had many requests to see this bronzer applied, so this weekend Liz was kind enough to do a few pictures.  She applied Dior Aurora all over the face using the large, soft Chanel Flat Powder Brush (reviewed here).  She swept the brush in a downward motion, to mimic the way that the light hits the face from the sun.  She then took a small-headed MAC 165 brush, and applied Dior Aurora in a more concentrated way on her cheeks, parts of her forehead and a bit on her chin.  Liz is not wearing any blush or highlighter.  The only color you see over her foundation is Dior Aurora.

Liz is wearing Dior Aurora over Chanel Lift Lumiere foundation in Intensity 1.0 Ivoire, together with Chanel Rouge Coco Magnolia lipstick (reviewed here) topped with Chanel Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss in Imaginaire (reviewed here).  She’s wearing the white and pink shades from Chanel’s Ombres Perlees eyeshadow palette (reviewed here).  Just for fun, Liz added a touch of MAC Reflects Gold as a wash over the eyeshadow for a little added sparkle.

We both enjoy Dior Aurora for use on the face, because the little touch of pinky peach and glow.  Dior Aurora is a glowy bronzer–that is, the skin seems to pick up a luminous look where the light hits.  It eliminates the need to add a blush and/or highlighter, and so it’s a very convenient way to get a very natural summer look.  Particularly in the very top picture, you can see that the little bit of color gives the impression of lightly sun-touched skin, without the incurring any damage of actual sun exposure.

Here’s a quick comparison of Dior’s Aurora and Guerlain’s Terra Inca (reviewed here)–which do you prefer?

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Apr 132011

Last week, I purchased Dior Nude Glow Aurora Healthy Glow Summer Powder ($46 /#001), the lighter bronzing powder from Dior’s Summer 2011 Electric Tropics Collection.  I’ve had the chance to play with this bronzer which confirm that this is exactly what I want to use in Summer 2011.

As you might recall, Aurora is the lighter toned bronzer of Dior’s Summer 2011 collection, suitable for my NC15/Chanel Cameo Intensity 1.0 complexion.  I believe if you are deeper than MAC NC 30, you should look into the deeper version, Sunset (#002).  As you can see, Aurora is an elaborately textured pressed powder that his a mix of light pink with a whisper of peach, a golden bronze and a tan.  If pressed, I would say that this bronzer leans warm with a touch of pink (and a tiny dab of peach).

Application tips: My favorite way to wear this was to use a very soft wash of color, then adding a more concentrated dose on the upper cheeks, nose, forehead and chin.  I started by applying very light layers using a large brush with very soft, pliable bristles.  I used this Chanel Euro powder brush, keep in mind that Burberry will be selling a version that is similar soon.  A Shu 18R or other very soft powder brush would work well too.  Avoid using a blush or bronzer brush for this stage, or you might get too much color.  I used the sweeping downward motion suggested by the House of Dior, where I swept the brush over the face lightly in a direction that mimics how the sun touches the skin in daylight.  The key is to go very lightly at this step, you just want a faint bit of color.  Also, do not fill in areas where the light would not hit (eye sockets, under the nose,  etc.) to avoid flattening out the face.

Then, I used a small-headed brush (in my case, a MAC 165 brush, but others will work too) and blush brush, to more precisely place the bronzer.  Here’s a nice bronzer tutorial by Lisa Eldridge:

Thoughts: Aurora is going to be one of my very favorite bronzers, based on its versatility and the touch of pink.  It looks very natural, as your skin might look as a tan with a faint touch of pink.  The warmth and pink cast remind of how skin actually looks when its been in the sun, rather than a powder bronzer.  The powder is extremely finely milled, and it gives just a touch of glow.  I just loved it.  Fortunately, the compact is very large, (.35 ounces), so there is plenty of product to get me all of the way through September.

As a comparison with other bronzers, both Edward Bess Daydream and Nars Laguna are more neutral (less warm and no pink) and deeper in tone.  When applied on the face, Soleil de Chanel Terre Epice is only slightly deeper, and lacks the pink tone of Dior Aurora.  I really love Dior Aurora, and I’m glad to have it as part of my collection.   Highly recommended.


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Apr 122011

Dior’s Electric Tropics Collection for Summer 2011 echoes the saturated brights seen on Dior runway, particularly for Le Vernis Aloha (#638) and Paradise (#558).  The vibrancy of these colors is pure gorgeousness, and exactly what I crave for a truly great summer nail color.  Each of these colors is packaged in a tinted lightweight plastic.  I suspect that this choice of plastic is due to the fragility of the fluorescent formula, which seems to require special care and storage.  Either that, or the tint is just for fun.

Each of these polishes is sold separately, in a large silver “Catwalk Duo” box that contains a glossy topcoat, that is in a traditional glass bottle.

According to the associate at the House of Dior, 30 Avenue Montaigne, where these were purchased, this topcoat is not the regular Dior formula, but rather a special glossier formula specifically designed for this duo.  Aloha and Paradise can only be purchased with the topcoat, a fact that accounts for a higher price point compared to the singles (I paid 31 euros for each of these sets, compared to 23 euros for a Dior single polish).  At first, I was a little irritated to be forced to buy a topcoat–after all, I already have plenty of good glossy topcoats by other brands, right?  Freedom of choice!!

Sometimes I can be such an idiot.

As it turns out, this Dior Catwalk Top Coat is awesome.  It dries in less than a minute to a perfect shine. Also, it’s extremely tough and flexible so that it bends with the nail. I’ve realized that some of the topcoats that I have been using (Poshe, primarily), seem to flake off after a day or so because they are too rigid. This leaves the fragile nail exposed.  The Dior lasts for days, protecting the nail for much longer, and bends with the nail as it hits.  I’ve stated wearing this Catwalk Top Coat as an everyday topcoat, seriously, it’s that good.

On to the polishes– Aloha is a slightly burned orange, with a vibrancy that rivals Rescue Beauty Lounge’s epic red Bangin’ from last summer.  Aloha applies flawlessly in two coats.  A truly awesome, retina-burning orange.  Love. This. Color.

Paradise is within an entirely different species of nail polish.  It’s a very sheer jelly, that with two coats give a very vibrant, sheerish pink jelly color.  By itself, Paradise dries down to a matte finish.  With the topcoat, it turns into a glossy jelly.

Swatches and pictures:

Close up swatches of two shades, showing the effect of the Catwalk Duo Top Coat:

A word about the fluorescent formula–this what makes these so vibrant.  To preserve that effect, the enclosed instruction card warns that these should be stored in the dark.  Through our own scientific testing, Liz and I discovered that these do not glow in the dark or anything odd (can you imagine–“I can’t sleep, my nails are too bright!” LOL).  It might be fun to see these under club lighting, but I’ll leave that investigatory work to Liz.

Gorgeous!  Another winner from Dior Summer 2011.


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Apr 112011

Dior’s Summer 2011 Collection, Electric Tropics, features two gloriously neutral eyeshadow palettes, Rosy Nude (#534) and Rosy Tan (#754) (5 Couleurs Palette Faud a Paupieres Haute Couleur/ Couture Color Eyeshadow Palette) ($58 each).  As previewed here, I was fortunate to buy these early from the haute couture and intensely magical House of Dior, at the 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris, on the first day that they became available last week.  These are both winning palettes in my opinion, their texture and application is superb.  These applied beautifully on the eye.  Their texture is soft and they lose none of their luminosity when placed on the lid.  They do not become frosty, as the powder is very finely milled (you get no (ahem) Stila Kitten effect).  They layer and blend well.  These are among the best high end palettes I’ve seen.  If you love neutral eyeshadows, do not miss out when these come to the U.S.

First, Rosy Nude (pictured above) is a collection of lighter shades perfect for daytime summer wear.  Each shade has the potential to be a lovely individual lidwash, or they can be used in combination to create a gorgeous, dimensional summer daytime eye:

  • A soft beige cream shimmer, that applies sheerly in a single layer to highlight the browbone
  • A cafe au lait shimmer neutral
  • A rich, warm peach
  • A medium-tone shimmery bronze
  • A light-toned reflective pink.  This is not a duo-chrome, but rather it reflects light very nicely and is light enough in tone so it avoids the “pink eye” effect that some pink shadows have.

This is a highly versatile palette, because the quality, layering and blendability factors are so high.  It is not as quite reflective as Chanel’s Ombres Perlees, but is a bit similar in that the palette is a about adding light and tone to the eye together with color.   Yet on my fair skin, the medium bronze tone makes a nice light liner color, or can be used in the outer corner to add a soft dimension to the eye.  Although some of you might not enjoy the pink tone, I found a subtle touch quite workable because the texture reflects pink light and the light tone seems to minimize the red.  This pink is not a color that punches your lid with pink paint;  rather the color adds a little cool dimension when used with a light-to-normal brushstroke.  I plan to use it occasionally, which I almost never say about a pink lid color.

Another picture of Rosy Nude so you can see the texture close-up:

Dior Rosy Nude


Dior Rosy Tan is a deeper version, appropriate for both day and night.  With the anchor deep brown shade, Rosy Tan is a gorgeous full-color-range neutral palette:

  • The center shade is one of the most gorgeous, shimmery highlighter colors I own.  It applies with more opaque pigment than the lightest shade in Rosy Nude, and so those with deeper skin tones may find this a better overall choice
  • This pink applies quite similarly to the pink in Rosy Nude, although with slightly more pigment
  • The bottom left shade is a very light-toned taupe with a highly reflective shimmery effect
  • The bottom right shade is a satin light cafe au lait tone, that can be used to wash the lid.  Applied on the eye, it’s a very low-shimmer, near-matte and so it is a nice shade to mix textures.
  • The top right shade is the all-important deep shimmery brown.  It applies like a dream.

This picture shows the color of Rosy Tan most accurately:

Another to show you the very reflective texture:


Swatches, swatches, swatches:

Bravo, Dior.  Bravo.

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