This is the only Tarte cheek stain I can comment on because I haven't tried any other shades ...yet. Mine came in a We Wish set... and I wouldn't have bought it on my own otherwise because I never really understood what gel blushes are. This reminds me of Clinique Black Honey Almost Lipstick, but for my cheeks. It is definitely lighter than it seems, but it still has a lot of blackberry reminiscence. I just use it on the top half of my cheek-apples and it lasts all day. It looks especially adorable (so I've been told) when you are coyly glancing up at, say, somebody you like and you try to bat your lashes at them (conversely, you could be blushing because you are making a fool out of yourself and then I'm sorry but this product will not help disguise that, but it won't make you look like any more of a clown at least). A natural, pretty, flushy blush. I like it SO MUCH MORE than any powder blush.
Palettes -Tarte - Ready-To-Wear/Pret-a-Porter Dual Look Palette
Veromusic 1/14/2008 11:09:00 PM
I love palettes. It's gotten to the point where I consider myself to be a highly discriminating consumer of designer cosmetics, yet any palette can cause me to look twice. And, I love to travel. I scrimp and save and book trips during the off-seasons just to see new places with old histories. So, when Tarte, already one of my favorite brands, came out with this New York Paris thing, I ran to my nearest Sephora and got it without testing or examining. I had the idea that since I am a New Yorker and I love Paris and try to go whenever circumstances allow, that maybe this palette would help other people to see that about me. Somehow the colors would evoke certain traits - glamour, cultivation, a European flair.... Anyway, I love most of the palette. I don't know if makeup can achieve what I mentioned above - maybe clothing is more efffective, but it certainly adds a little something to my routine. The shadows were a little bit disappointing only because the lightest ones don't show up on my tan skin, and therefore the darkest ones are not dark enough to use as liners. But they are very pretty, soft, subtle colors. The blushes and glosses are highly pigmented, and in very flattering shades, at least to me. They are somewhat thick, but if you use warm fingers to dab them on that might help. I love that this palette comes with almost everything you need (the rest assured eyeliner doesn't make me look anything because you can't see it on me) but the mascara is great and the brushes actually work. Even though there are some issues, I am glad I bought this because there is a LOT of makeup in a cool little package.
I have tan skin that is olive in the winter and bronze in the summer. I love Indian Red. I can wear it casually enough to go to a bar with friends without looking like I'm trying too hard or have no sense, or to auditions (I am a classical musician) and concerts to ignite a spark in my appearance. More than that, it is such a pretty color by itself that seeing on myself in the mirror just makes me happy. Very classic yet fresh at the same time (like a Victorian painting of a British child eating strawberries in a field if that means anything to you). The stain factor is genius, the best way to do red IMO, and I look forward to trying Moonfleet...when I can commit to buying the duo.
Cleansers -Olay - Gentle Foaming Face Wash w/ Aloe (Sensitive-Skin)
Veromusic 1/14/2008 10:40:00 PM
I agree with most of the reviews already on here - I am on my 5th tube of this since I discovered it last year. I have sensitive/combination skin that gets flaky and irritated in the winter, and I wear makeup so I need something that cleans thoroughly, soothes, and doesn't aggravate. I love the syrupy-to-foamy consistency, the mild scent, and the feeling afterwards. The price is great, and I will continue to buy as my main cleanser (I use it in the shower, and sometimes over the sink if I have energy. The tube is too messy to travel with.)
Palettes -LORAC - Sneak Preview Beauty Insider Palette
Veromusic 1/14/2008 10:30:00 PM
I really love the eyeshadows in this palette - I use the black with gold flecks as a liner and it goes on very soft with almost no pressure, makes a distinct line and lasts all day. The gold is glamorous and rich. All of the shadows are pigmented enough to show up in a sophisticated way on my tan/olive skin. I don't use the peach blush because it has no effect on my, I think it makes my face look messy or dirty because it's too close to my skin tone. The pink blush seems a bit dark, but workable if you have the right lip. I do not wear the gloss, blush, and shadow together at the same time, so while I like them individually, maybe the point of putting them in the same palette is to suggest their usage as such. It is a little bit expensive for me, so in the future I might just purchase the eyeshadows separately.
I have a problem with impulse buying whenever I walk into Sephora. I justify my purchases by comparison shopping and trying to find the best quality for my money, but that's just an excuse. So even though I went to get a new eyelash curler, and I have a Fresh Supernova mascara that is only one month old, I grabbed a full size Tarte mascara on my way to the register. I've tried smaller sizes before as part of their We Wish line and Pret-A-Porter, but you know how those little tubes dry out before you can get a good impression. When I got home, I removed my eye makeup, used my new curler (shu uemera) and Fresh Supernova on one eye, and Tarte Lights Camera Lashes without curling first on the other eye. Tarte wins! It's incredible! Amazing curl action, separation, lengthening, color, and at least $7 cheaper than some other anti-climactic products out there. I hope it doesn't dry out as fast as Fresh does. I took off one lippie for the packaging, which while I like shiny purple things, came unglued when I opened the mascara for the first time. It's manageable though.
Lip Gloss -NARS - Lip Gloss/ Lip stain gloss in sandpiper / daredevil
Veromusic 1/14/2008 10:09:00 PM
I have tan skin on the border between olive and bronze, which can look grayish in the winter and is generally difficult to find complimentary colors for. I usually stick to true reds or clear glosses. This NARS duo was irresistable however - the colors were so beautiful just looking at the gloss on display, I bought one even though I was skeptical about the lighter half - sandpiper. Sandpiper is a luxurious champagne/bronze/pink... it has bloom (by that I mean it gives a little life to my lips and complexion) and richness...not a cheap looking concoction. Daredevil is a somewhat dramatic but very tasteful and alluring berry red stain, which one can wear as a muted, mysterious matte hue, or layered for a bolder look. Personally, I prefer showing off the color - its not too aggressive, rather sexy actually. I haven't yet tried the duo together simultaneously... not sure about that.