Aug 302013
 

Nars Fall 2013 has a number of lip products and pencils that are an eclectic mix of colors (previously, the new Nars single eyeshadow colors were reviewed and swatched here). First, there are two new Nars Larger than Life Eyeliners. Via De’ Martelli is a chocolate brown.

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 The color is a neutral matte.

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Las Ramblas is a shimmery yellow gold.

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The Las Ramblas is a good inner-eye brightener or under-eye liner, and is quite warm.

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Swatches of both Via De’ Martelli and Las Ramblas:

Nars Fall swatches2

There are two new Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencils ($25 each). Nars Mysterious is a matte crimson red.

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This color is highly pigmented, and requires a bit of care when applying. It’s a striking shade so you want get it right. We exfoliated before, and watched our placement carefully. A bit of balm underneath is always a good idea. The image below (on Liz) does not have any balm–it’s a straight application of the pencil directly onto the lips.

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Nars Paimpol is an edgy “pink chiffon”–a cool matte light pink that looks really ’60′s inspired (or maybe a punk ’80′s). We had a bit of a tough time getting smooth coverage–you might wish to do several passes to build up the color for full effect if this is a shade that you love. 

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There is shimmer added to the matte formula.

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Again, no balm so that you can see how the pencil looks applied directly to the lips.

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Swatches of Mysterious Red and Paimpol:

Nars Fall swatches1

There are two new Nars Pure Matte Lipstick shades ($26 each). La Paz is an orchid pink.

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This color is limited edition, and quite unusual.

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Despite the “pure matte” name, the shimmer gives a sort of wet, moisturized look.  On Liz:

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Peloponnese is a ginger pink that translates into a warm honey nude.

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Like La Paz, there is shimmer within the formula.

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On Liz, you can see that this shimmer and color adds a touch of life to this understated color:

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Swatches of La Paz and Peloponnese:

Nars Fall swatches3

Overall, this eclectic mix has a lot of edgy and traditional shades. Does anything catch your eye?

Available at Nordstrom and other Nars sources.

Nars sent 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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Mar 042011
 

Nars has released a very limited edition product, 413 Bleecker Pure Matte Lipstick ($25), to commemorate the opening of the new boutique at that address. Fortunately for me, New York City native Joeybunny of The Pink Sith, was able to purchase the item for me because it is only available at the Nars boutique at that address.

As background, Nars new boutique is an uber-cool little store designed to suit the Nars aesthetic.  It has gorgeous white walls, sells Nars entire line as well as a few items chosen especially for that location, including books and other gorgeously-designed things that suit Nars’ vision.

Here’s a video explaining the concept and design of the Nars boutique:

 

The store is in a gorgeous tree-lined neighborhood populated by several Marc Jacobs boutiques, including Jacob’s charming fashion-themed bookstore “BookMarc.”

Consistent with the brick-ish feel of the neighborhood, Nars 413 Bleecker is a warm, brick toned red in a matte formula.  It’s an edgy, yet wearable neutral.

Here’s a comparison of Nars 413 Bleecker with several darkish tones for comparison.  Here, Chanel Rouge Coco Rivoli is far more red.  Chanel Rouge Coco Patchouli is much lighter in tone.  Finally, Chanel Rouge Coco in Rouge Noir is much more plum-black.

Nars 413 Bleecker on Liz’s lips:

Nars 413 Bleecker fits my preference for edgy neutrals, as well as my predilection for special, commemorative items.

 

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Feb 142011
 

Because I’m obsessed with edgy neutrals, I had to try NARS Pure Matte Lipstick in Madere ($25), released for Spring 2011.  This is a very light matte nude that nearly matches my NC15 skintone.

Mattes are tricky, nude mattes are even trickier.  About five years ago, Angelina Jolie seemed to wear a matte nude everywhere.  She made Guerlain’s Divorna 480 famous by suggesting it was her favorite shade (it was discontinued a few years later).  Jolie did not become famous by cultivating a girl-next-door image.  The matte nude lip complimented her other-worldly glamour.  As you can from the movie poster (below) matte nude lipstick can look drying on even the most glamorous celebrity.  It seems to go with the territory.

NARS Madere is lighter and slightly pinker than Guerlain’s Divorna 480.  Chanel Rouge Allure Mythic is between them in tone, but has a glossier, moisturizing texture (and avoids the drying effect by forgoing attempts for the matte effect).  If your monitor is not very sharp, you might not see NARS Madere on the far left:

Liz and I tried Madere and, predictably, found the lipstick nearly matched our skintone.  This light matte color nearly disappears.  Liz disliked both the drying effect and the color, I thought this is pretty normal for a matte nude:

On Friday, I saw that Francois Nars used the Pure Matte Lipstick in Madere on the Thankoon runway for New York Fashion Week, topped with the Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Hopi:

I began to suspect that there was more than meets the eye to Madere.  Liz and I tried Madere lipstick with Hopi lip pencil ($24) (review forthcoming), to see if we could recreate the look:

The Velvet Gloss lip pencil changed Madere completely, giving it a glossy gold finish.

I tried Madere topped with the deep purple Nana Lipgloss ($24) (review here) which is a highly pigmented deep purple gloss. Madere provided a neutral, creamy base that made Nana sparkle and shine.  The look was very modern and edgy, and I absolutely loved it.  Below is a picture on Liz.  Although Liz still wasn’t sold, I loved the Madere/Nana combination, in part because my skin tones are more mauve-based (Liz’s undertones are more pink), and also because our tastes are different:

Here, we compared Nars Velvet Gloss Pencil in New Lover.  On the left, no base or lipliner (just the pencil).  On the right, New Lover is applied over Madere:

NARS Madere Pure Matte lipstick is a niche product, targeted to those looking for an unusual and edgy look.  I was ready to return Madere on the first few tries, but now I realize that I’m going to be able to achieve some interesting looks with it.

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