Powder -Unlisted Brand - Mineral Fusion--Pressed Base
Serena94 1/13/2013 3:55:00 PM
I have long been trying to find a non-talc powder foundation. I've tried many brands, including BE, Everyday Minerals, DiorSkin, etc. I did some research on this brand and purchased it at Whole Foods. I purchased Olive 2, which is very good for light to medium or medium to light tan/olive skin. It's not a classic olive per se, just a nice medium shade with a tinge of olive warmth that works well on most people with warm to neutral undertones. The beef I have with this product is the way it blends. Unlike DiorSkin and Everyday Minerals, it doesn't seem to melt into the skin very well. It has a tendency to sit on top of your skin so that it is pretty clear, when looking up close, that you are wearing powder. I tried light applications, heavy applications, blending with a flat brush, blending with a domed brush, applying after light moisturizer, applying after heavy moisturizer, etc. It all looked the same. This was a disappointment, since the shade is very good and doesn't oxidize and the formula seems gentle and doesn't cause break-outs (at least for me). The compact is also thin and light and easy to toss into a purse, with no excess powder coming out the sides. If you are young and have excellent skin, this might work very well for you. However, if you are looking to cover redness or uneven skin tone and do not want to emphasize fine lines, I would definitely skip.
I have long been trying to find a non-talc powder foundation. I've tried many brands, including BE, Everyday Minerals, DiorSkin, etc. I did some research on this brand and purchased it at Whole Foods. The color of Olive 2 is very good - especially if you have light to medium or medium to light tan/olive skin. It's not a classic olive per se, just a nice medium shade with a tinge of olive warmth that works well on most people with warm to neutral undertones. The beef I have with this product is the way it blends. Unlike DiorSkin and Everyday Minerals, it doesn't seem to melt into the skin very well. It has a tendency to sit on top of your skin so that it is pretty clear, when looking up close, that you are wearing powder. I tried light applications, heavy applications, blending with a flat brush, blending with a domed brush, applying after light moisturizer, applying after heavy moisturizer, etc. It all looked the same. This was a disappointment, since the shade is very good and doesn't oxidize and the formula seems gentle and doesn't cause break-outs (at least for me). The compact is also thin and light and easy to toss into a purse, with no excess powder coming out the sides. If you are young and have excellent skin, this might work very well for you. However, if you are looking to cover redness or uneven skin tone and do not want to emphasize fine lines, I would definitely skip.
Lips -Jane Iredale - Just Kissed Lip and Cheek Stain
Serena94 10/29/2012 6:13:00 PM
This product has simple, decent packaging and goes on very well, tinting your lips a lovely rosy shade. (I have not tried it on my cheeks.) It feels great for a little while, but I have discovered, after using it 10-15 times so far, that my lips become very dry after a couple of hours. This is a product that requires frequent application - much more so than any lip balm-esque product I have tried. If you don't mind re-applying a lot, this is a very nice product. I will have to skip it, unfortunately.
I read about this product on several blogs and ordered it almost as a joke. In photos, the product looks so muddy - you can't actually believe a person would intentionally apply it to her face! But these bloggers had to be right about something. Notorious is indeed a muddy gray-brown with a slight sheen - not shimmer, just iridescence. It comes in an excellent, lightweight package with mini-brush (which works okay in a pinch, but it's better to have your own brush). Very classy Chanel packaging with cloth bag. The powder is not as densely-packed as most blushes - when you tap your brush on it, some of the powder tends to swirl in the air. So the trick is to use a VERY light hand -- very, very light, and then you blend like crazy. Once you do, the result is sort of amazing. Your face does look more sculpted. I tried it along the sides of my nose, and that also looked excellent. This product is great for nights out and.. so key... for photos!! If you feel as though your face needs more definition, especially in important photographs (wedding, etc.), this is a must have. I'm glad I listened to the bloggers!
The lip glazes have a lovely scent and texture, pretty packaging, and are quite well-made, but ugh. 100% Pure has one of the worst descriptions of lip shades on any cosmetics website I have come across. Their color descriptions consistently do not match what I have purchased. I purchased Sultry looking for a medium honey nude and what came back was a chalky, light nude with a garish orange tinge. This might suit a very, very fair-skinned person but I think on most people, this would look like the color of crushed baby aspirin mixed with milk. Skip.
Eye Shadow -100 Percent Pure - Satin Eyeshadow in Bora Bora
Serena94 11/14/2011 7:03:00 PM
This shade is described as "shimmery golden honey" on 100% Pure's website, which is spot on (surprising, considering that their lipstick shade descriptions are strangely inaccurate). It is a deep golden honey, and would still show up well on people with medium or tan skin tones. It is VERY shimmery. It can work during the day if used sparingly. But I mostly keep this for evening wear. I know some people find the application a bit odd. It looks almost like a hard block of gel eyeliner in a pot. The best thing I have found is to take a synthetic eye shadow brush -- one that is a little stiff -- and swirl it in the pot. Then brush it on slowly (as if applying primer) and blend. This definitely will not work well with a regular, soft, or fluffy eye shadow brush. The product is just too stiff. For this reason, the satin eye shadows are particularly good for travel. Nothing will crumble or fall out and if you forget your eye shadow brush, you can always apply with your fingers.
I won't repeat too much of what has already been said... but I will say this: Fans of the classic Shu Uemura ME Silver 945 (now discontinued, but still beloved) can find a very nice replica in this shade! Lovely, complex bronze/pewter with hints of silvery evergreen. Excellent for an elegant dark eye. EM shadows, in my experience (I have five), have excellent staying power, don't irritate, and don't crease that much.
I echo the other reviewers' comments that this is a very complex purple shade. In the pot, it gleams like the most brilliant amethyst, a truly rich royal purple color. However, it is not that pigmented. The color is actually rather light upon first application and requires a few swipes. Poison Orchid comes out as a warm gray-based eggplant with an extraordinarily pretty purple and pink shimmer. This may sound overly poetic, but think of a dusky purple sunset in the city and this is the shade. The only reason why this doesn't get five stars from me is the shimmer tends to flake. So, by the end of the day, you will end up with very tiny glitter on your upper cheekbones or elsewhere on your face. Fine for evening, but maybe not great during the day.
Eye Shadow -Everyday Minerals - Eyeshadow - Driftwood
Serena94 10/24/2011 6:48:00 PM
I agree with the reviewers below. An excellent, totally matte coffee with milk/toffee shade (no sheen, no shimmer, but not chalky) that works well as an overall eye opener or as a primer. I like this shadow for an everyday, natural look. Excellent wear (very little creasing, if any, after a full day of work) gentle on the eyes, and simple. The only problem: EM needs to work on its packaging. The plastic tubs are rather cheap and you really have to tap hard on the bottom in order to get the shadow to dispense onto the lid. (Packaging is very similar to Bare Escentuals.) But I like EM better than BE, and Driftwood is a terrific buy.
Lips -Yves Saint Laurent - Volupte Sheer Candy #06 Luscious Cherry
Serena94 8/13/2011 8:59:00 PM
I am already a monster fan of the Volupte line (see my other reviews), so I was thrilled to hear about the Sheer Candy line. First things first: It has the same beautiful packaging as the regular line -- indestructible, classy, perfect weight and size. Sheer Candy is described as a "glossy balm" -- and that (hallelujah) is exactly what it is. It feels sheer but substantial, somewhat like Fresh's Sugar Lip Treatment, but without the extra greasiness. The pigmentation is excellent... wonderful, sheer color that has the staying power and "color presence" of a glossy lipstick. #6 Luscious Cherry is a lovely, everyday-wearable, apple red shade with very minimal shimmer. The "cherry" name doesn't fit here... it's not a deep, dark red. Think Macintosh apples. A simple, cheerful red that works well on all ages -- nothing too overpowering. The slight shimmer in this shade has more of a "luminizing" effect than a glittery effect. And the scent! Totally delicious -- fruity, but not chemically -- just a delightful, happy, I'm-smelling-tropical-fruit scent. Yet another HG from YSL.
Lipstick -Yves Saint Laurent - Rouge Volupte #27 Rose Paris
Serena94 8/13/2011 8:39:00 PM
I own five of these lipsticks, and they are my go-to HG lipsticks every week. I've written in previous Volupte reviews about the fabulous pigmentation, smoothness, and staying power of this line, as well as the added SPF 15 benefit. #27 Rose Paris is a stunning, candy-like, very bright, matte pink-coral. It's got a hint of tropical playfulness, but it's a bit retro in personality -- sort of "Mad Men" meets the Riviera. Definitely a beautiful spring/summer color. Because of the intense pigmentation, this is a bright shade meant to add a real pop of color to the face. Excellent shade for photos, even for a wedding, if you're looking for a happy, bright lip. Its coral undertones, though, can emphasize the color of your teeth. If your teeth are lovely and white, this shade is genius. If not, you may want to choose another bright Volupte color (like Rose Culte) that has more blue undertones.
Lipstick -Giorgio Armani - Rouge D'Armani #405 Tibetan Orange
Serena94 12/31/2010 12:04:00 AM
Enough has already been said about the superb quality, texture, and staying power of Rouge D'Armani lipsticks. I have four of them and wear them so much I hardly touch the rest of my collection! #405 is part of the 2010 Holiday Collection. It's a limited edition, gorgeous shade that looks like a bright tangerine with shimmer in the tube. It can be applied lightly over gloss and it is such a flattering orange -- the coral-colored shimmer is fine and elegant and the overall shade is a universally flattering color that has a lot of pop and depth. This is not a dime store orange. It is a true tangerine, with a hint of red. The result is rich and sophisticated. Orange lipstick haters, this may turn your world upside down. And for the rest of us who are sort of sick of the same "red lip" look, this is a refreshing and startlingly pretty change.
I love Armani lipsticks... was introduced to them by an MUA at Saks last year and now reach for these constantly. Plum 603 is part of the new Holiday 2010 collection. It is, rather bizarrely, also called "Black Purple" even though it is neither black nor purple. The color swatch on the company's website also is totally off. I ordered it online... unfortunately, it is very similar to a NARS shade I already have, but it is such superb quality (smooth, lightweight, minimal scent, long-lasting, very pigmented, even-toned, and moisturizing without being overly slick or glossy) that I am going to keep it. Plum 603 is a bright berry shade. It's not quite hot pink or fuschia, but it's a curious, sort of nuanced magenta. It's the color of those magenta dendrobium orchids you see in the florist's shop or grocery store. On lighter-skinned women, this will be very, very bright in an eye-popping, awesome runway model way. On medium and darker-skinned women, this will be a very elegant magenta that has "wow" appeal when layered. If applied lightly and blended with lip balm, this will create a beautiful, everyday look that will brighten your whole face.
Eyeliner -Giorgio Armani - Smooth Silk Eye Pencil #3
Serena94 10/28/2010 12:11:00 AM
Armani eyeliners go on very smoothly, and this one is no exception. The color is a blue-black.. definitely NOT sapphire, for those of you who want a blue with more presence. (For a good sapphire eyeliner shade, try Stila.) This is a very versatile dark navy that works especially well on brown eyes. It's good if you're sick of brown or black eyeliner and want a little "kick." The blender is superb.. it's rounded, rather that edged, and creates a beautiful blend that's excellent for a smoky eye. This is a great blue for conservative types who want a natural looking eyeliner with a tiny added oomph.
Eyeliner -Giorgio Armani - Maestro liquid eyeliner
Serena94 10/28/2010 12:02:00 AM
The only liquid eyeliner I can use... it goes on like a very smooth marker. The tip is not too thin and pointed, nor too blunt, so you get a perfectly beautiful line.. this is also not a liquid liner that needs an excessively steady hand. Hold it still enough, and it will work. That's all that is necessary. An HG liquid eyeliner, for certain.