Eyeliner -Elizabeth Arden - Smoky Eyes Powder Pencil
ladyc74 4/2/2013 7:07:00 AM
This is the much-lauded pencil adored by makeup artists, but to my mind it's not the best. I think that's because I like to line the waterline of my eyes and prefer an intense, defined look to a soft, smoky one. For the latter, I'm sure this works fantastically. And don't get me wrong, it IS a great pencil - you get a good dark line that lasts well, even inside the eye, and fades nicely. But it's Bobbi Brown Longwear Eye Pencils all the way for this eyeliner fanatic. They give an amazingly intense line that doesn't budge, and they don't irritate my eyes either. They have a more pigmented, waxy texture, whereas these are soft and powdery, as the name implies, so I think the EA pencils are probably your go-to if you want to be able to smudge and smoke your pencil.
I love Guerlain fragrances - that heavy, old-fashioned vanilla powder just does it for me. My most beloved is L'Heure Bleue. Unfortunately, my husband feels the opposite - he loathes the very same powdery note that I adore. So this scent is my compromise. It is very definitely Guerlain, with that trademark musky vanilla powder. But it's a lot more subtle. Guerlain-lite, if you will. I am not overly keen on the initial fragrance, which has a fresh, watery, shampoo-like note. But that fades within minutes to a beautiful, soft, slightly floral powdery honey - and let's face it, it's the drydown you live with for most of the day, so I'm happy with that. Nobody has ever commented on this fragrance and that's because it's not in-your-face, I think - but it's warm, comforting and pretty. A great everyday Guerlain fix.
Eye Shadow -Bobbi Brown - Long-Wear Cream Shadow - Beach Bronze
ladyc74 4/2/2013 6:51:00 AM
A gorgeous warm bronze that leans to gold rather than being too red/orange. Many brown shades don't work for my hazel-brown eyes - perhaps because they're too similar to my eye colour, they just make me look tired, so I usually reach for cooler taupe shades. But this is the perfect rich chocolate. Amazing quality of course - lasts forever even on my oily lids. These cream shadows are second-to-none.
Gorgeous deep, elegant blue. Two coats make a chic navy. More modern alternative to deep red, less goth than black. Yes, Chanel polishes are expensive, but they do last (both on nails and in the bottle without going gloopy) - plus Chanel is just great at nailing (sorry) the best colours. Even when Chanel does more unusual shades, they never look garish or faddy.
Lovely. I don't normally wear mid-toned lipstick shades - I prefer to either go deep or nude, if I wear lipstick at all. I have very pale but olive-toned skin with dark eyes, and I just didn't think medium-depth colours like this worked for me. But this beautiful rose, which has earthy brown notes, is very flattering. It has a bit of punch but isn't overpowering, which means it works well with my beloved smokey eye makeup, and is warm and bright enough to lift a neutral makeup look perfectly - it's gorgeous with grey/brown/taupe eye makeup and coral blusher. I'd say it's a slightly deeper version of the lipstick shade Audrey Hepburn wore in Breakfast at Tiffany's. Great for day or night, and can be blotted down to a more subtle stain. Texture-wise, I'm a fan of Rouge Coco - they're not as long-lasting as YSL lipsticks, but they fade nicely and go on smooth and creamy.
This is a sheer, moisturising pale nude - and by 'nude', I mean nude in the truest sense! Not pinky-brown or just-bitten, but proper beigey-nude. If it were more pigmented it could look chalky and deeply unflattering, but it's saved by its sheerness and soft shine. It's a lovely formulation, quite moisturising and goes on smooth. Good for a 60s look. I probably wouldn't bother buying again, though. My lips are naturally pale so, on me, the effect of Little Darling isn't much more than applying a slick of balm.
I love deep berry shades but sometimes those can be a bit much for summer daytime or when your eye makeup's heavier. That's where Bonheur comes in. On me, this is a pretty berry violet (can't see much red in it) which is fairly sheer and gives nice shine. Because it's quite sheer, it works well with quite strong eye makeup - I pair it with gold/olive eyeshadow and black liner and that seems to work. My colouring is pale but warm - with yellow undertones - and this violet colour seems to enhance the hazel in my brown eyes. Taking two lippies off for staying power, which is nil - you can buy lipsticks of a similar texture that leave a stain when the initial gloss wears off, and for Chanel prices, I would have appreciated that! But I love the shade and feel so will continue to wear until I find a longer-lasting dupe.
Avoid if you have oily skin. I do, and the SA at Lancome sold me this as an oil-absorbing primer. It is not. It's simply oil-free, and for me that isn't enough; I need something that actually mops up oil. I was super-shiny within an hour, more so than without this product in fact. On the plus side, it did give a smooth finish to my base, as promised. So I can imagine it might be good for people without oily skin issues. I'm going back to the Lancome counter to complain about this being mis-sold to me!
Bronzers -Bobbi Brown - Illuminating Bronzing Powder in MAUI
ladyc74 8/11/2012 6:07:00 AM
Gorgeous. Definitely more of a blusher than a bronzer because the colour is a pinky-coral. It has a fine, blendable texture and although it's shimmery, this isn't over the top - I have very oily skin so avoid too much extra shine. In that respect, it is infinitely superior to Orgasm, which other reviewers have compared it to. For me, Orgasm is unnaturally glittery; Maui just has glowy shimmer. Maui is also a better look than Orgasm on my skin tone - which is pale but olive toned. Stunning.
This might be the BB cream for me. I don't like putting too many different things on my skin, so loved the idea of BB creams, but so far hadn't been impressed by the ones I'd tried (No 7, Estee Lauder, Garnier). I have very oily skin and have to be careful with base - I can end up super-shiny within a couple of hours even with oil-free products. The BB BB cream has ingredients that mop up excess oil, and it does work. I'm writing now after wearing it for 12 hours, and, yes, I have shine now, but the oil only started to creep through a few hours ago. I don't mind a little bit. It feels a lot more comfortable than my usual LM tinted moisturiser, which can get uncomfortably greasy in the summer. Only slight reservation is the BB formulation is quite thick and looks a little cakey to begin with if I'm not very sparing with application. But once it's been settled on my skin for an hour or so, it looks smooth and natural.
I like dramatic mascara - my favourite is YSL False Lash Effect. I don't love this as much, but it isn't far behind. The formula is quite thin, and I get the best effects from Doll Lashes by applying a layer then leaving it for about 20 seconds, so it dries a little but not completely, then going back over the lashes again. People have commented on my eyelashes when I've worn it. I do have naturally long, curly lashes, and it's great for emphasising them, but I can't say how it'd be on shorter, finer lashes - doesn't feel as though there's much bulk in it.
I have a serious eyeliner addiction. My eyes are big and hazelish brown, but quite hooded, so I can't do much with my eyelids - therefore I go to town on liner! I wear pencil it on the waterline, both upper and lower lids, smudged slightly, usually with either a neutral shimmer shadow, or something purplish. I normally wear black - brown is a bit meh and unflattering for some reason [I need more contrast with my eyes or I look tired!] But - I'll get to the point - Tarnish is my one exception to black. It's gorgeous. To be honest, it looks black at first glance, but is slightly softer and brightens the eye, I find. It also gives a really flattering toffee-ish colour to my eyes, which are brown but with hazel tones, rather than being a true dark brown. This liner brings out the gold-ish flecks in my irises. I don't like obviously coloured liners, but this really is a blackened green rather than in-your-face green. So it works with all shadows and other makeup. I think the staying power's pretty good. A pencil has to be soft enough to work on the waterline, and this is lovely to work with - I find it's still on my waterline a few hours later, and can easily refresh if I need more intensity then.
It's the best fast-dry top coat I've ever used, no doubt about that. It really does dry polish super-fast, and is a hard, durable top coat that helps your manicure last. BUT, probably because of the consistency required to make it dry so fast, unfortunately it turns very gloopy about two thirds of the way into the bottle, and after that it's unusable. A major point against Seche Vite, considering the price. Really, it should come in a smaller bottle. However, until I find something better, I will continue to use it as I do need a product that dries polish quickly, and in that respect, Seche Vite does just what it says on the tin. EDIT: won't buy again. Just had to chuck yet another bottle of manicure-ruining gloopy Seche Vite, with half the product still left.