Feb 112011
 

Dior’s recent Spring/Summer 2011 Couture show in Paris (video here) featured an incredible fantasy by John Galliano, an almost unbelievable artistic vision made real.

The models featured a strong red lip, in Rouge Dior Ara Red ($30/ #999), a color created by Galliano, a rich true red that looked incredible on the runway.

I wondered if non-models could pull over a gorgeous red lip with Ara Red, I was happy to find that it’s a current color up for sale on Dior.com.  If you’d like a treat, this page of Dior’s website details the entire line of Rouge Dior colors, and their heritage.  Each shade of the line is based on a Dior Haute Couture dress — when you select the shade name, the dress and it’s collection name and year appears on the right:

I was delighted to find free downloadable Dior wallpapers for your computer, iPhone and iPad–so beautiful! I’m adding this one to iPad immediately…

When Liz was home the other evening, we played.  We’ve both concluded that if you want to buy one unbelievable item to change your look, Rouge Dior in Ara Red is a wonderful choice.  We honestly thought that it actually makes sense to spend $30 on one legendary lipstick, but then again if you’re reading Cafe Makeup you probably already know that’s how we think.

In the tube, Rouge Dior Ara red comes in the luxurious tube with the gorgeous Cannage texture:

Close up:

Applied, close up:

We found Ara Red is a full commitment color.  There are some lipsticks that you can wear sheerly on the lips if you are wearing less than a full face of makeup.  That didn’t really seem to be the case with Rouge Dior Ara Red.  Rather,the color calls for flawless skin and careful application.  There is no need to wear a gloss with Ara Red, the color stands perfectly clear on its own with a gorgeous glow.

Here’s Liz in makeup posted here, full face:

I loved that this strong color still looks wearable, and compliments Liz’s other features without overwhelming them.

Like every strong red, Liz applied Ara Red very carefully.  First, she exfoliated her lips with Lush’s Bubblegum.  Then, she applied Ara Red with a lip brush all over.  Finally, she ran Ara Red directly from the tube over the lips.  No base or gloss was used.

Here are some comparisons with other reds in my stash  First, Rouge Dior Ara Red, Chanel Rouge Coco Gabrielle and then MAC Red No. 5 (from a limited edition Couture line some years back).

These swatches really don’t tell the whole story–when applying them, I found that Rouge Coco Gabrielle can be worn dabbed on the lips sheerly, and then “dressed up” to full formality with a gloss (Chanel Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss in Emoi works well, as does Exces).  In other words, Gabrielle can be worn more casually, and doesn’t have the impact of Dior Ara Red.  Rouge Dior Ara Red stands on its own, but really needed full application to look right– a few sheer dabs just didn’t seem wearable.  Obviously, MAC’s Red No. 5 is a different color all together–it’s a much pinker red than the others.

I got an email yesterday asking an interesting question–why do women wear bold colors?  Why do some women not wear them?  What do these colors say when they are worn?  Are there occasions when you won’t wear them?  When you will?  What do you think?

Liz and I would love to know your thoughts?

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Feb 072011
 

According to this source, Dior will be releasing 44 new Dior Addict lipsticks over the next few months, categorized into Rock, Baby Doll  and Glam.  Some will be cream textured, other shimmery and others with glitter particles.  Dior will apparently be sending out postcards with sample colors to introduce the range, which have peel off stickers so that you can try the color.

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Jan 262011
 

The other day, Liz and I were playing around with some pink lipsticks, and we noticed how the difference in texture and tone affected final impact of the look. On one hand, we used RMK Irresistible Lips B in Pink (#04), which I obtained from a beauty blogging friend kind enough to ship it to me from the UK. In case you are unfamiliar RMK is a very high quality brand from Japan. This sells for approximately $40 on Ichibankao.

RMK Pink has an absolutely gorgeous, moisturizing formula.  It feels like a light, luxurious balm, and the moist look translates to the lip, imparting a gorgeous fullness and glow.  This is a very soft warm watermelon pink that is absolutely flattering on warm skin tones.  It has a touch of sheerness, that lets some of the natural lip color to show through.

For contrast, we played with MAC’s Nicki Minaj Pink Friday ($14.50), a rebellious cool, flat pink that Liz stole for her own stash.  This one sold out instantly, but is rumored to return.

I suppose it is not surprising that I preferred RMK Pink, and Liz preferred Pink Friday?  At any rate, I could not get over how the different textures and formula really were.

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Dec 232010
 

Liz and I played with Chanel Ombres Perlees and Rouge Coco Peregrina to show you a little more of Chanel’s most recent collection.  In particular, I’ve had several questions about how the new Chanel eyeshadow formulation in the Ombres Perlees palette looks applied.  Sometimes pictures really do say 1,000 words, so here are some photos.

First, here is the final overall look with the Ombres Perlees palette.  On the lid, Liz used a mix of the first (white) and second (peach) shades.  In the crease and outer lid, Liz used the darkest shade (no base). Liz is wearing Rouge Coco Peregrina (no base or liner) on lips.  For her blush, she is wearing Guerlain Orient Sun, a baked Terracotta blush that was limited edition two years ago, and a black pencil liner (Prestige Total Intensity in Deepest Black) lining her inner rim.  She’s also wearing Guerlain Le 2 Volume mascara, Chanel Lift Lumiere in Intensity 1.0 (Ivoire) and Caron translucent loose powder.

Here are some close-ups, wearing these colors from Chanel’s Ombres Perlees palette.  In the following picture, the darkest color is applied very lightly, and this picture shows the pearl texture of the eyeshadow:

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