Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Inspiration - Chanel Fall Image Ad

This is long overdue, but I love this picture from Chanel's fall campaign! The eyegloss looks absolutely amazing, though I would never actually use it in real life since I'm sure it would crease on me in 10 minutes. Not to mention my complexion probably would not work as well with the red color. I find that I'm usually drawn to ads that have models wearing neutral colors, so this is really one of very few boldly colored looks that I like and I think would be wearble for people with pale skin for evening events.

Inspiration - Ueno Juri for Maquillage Fall/Winter 2009 Base Makeup

I've been tempted to try a number of Asian base makeup items ever since my obsession with makeup started. Eventually, I kind of gave up on the idea since Asian base makeup tend to be more powdery and matte than what I like to use and I don't like buying base makeup online for fear of getting the wrong shade. This new ad campaign from Maquillage may just change my mind, though. I know the power of photoshop, but Ueno Juri's complexion just looks so radiant and fresh in this picture! Does that mean I'm going to go online and buy the new Maquillage base makeup Ueno Juri is using the first chance I get? Not necessarily, but I would definitely check out the new items if I get a chance to see them in person ^_^

Monday, September 21, 2009

Guerlain Mysterious Butterfly: Pretty and Pretty Useless

I have been lemming Guerlain's Mysterious Butterfly palette since it came out during the holiday seasons last year. However, I did not have a full time job then, so I definitely could not afford it. Finally, last week I gave in to the lemming and ordered the palette online when I saw that this limited edition palette was still available on I guess it's not really surprising that the palette hasn't sold out since I read several slightly negative reviews on Sephora. I still decided to get it despite the warning of the low pigmentation level, though, because I was blinded by its outer beauty =P

Just looking at the case makes me happy! I love the color and the butterfly imprint. I was considering getting a regular Guerlain quad instead, but I don't like the gold color of the case for the regular collection. That is a very shallow reason, but a reason nonetheless =P Like Dior's eyeshadow palettes, Guerlain's also come with protective velvet pouches, as befits such a high end brand.

Inside the palette are two applicators and four eyeshadows with a beautiful buttefly-motif overlay of silver shimmer. I haven't touched the silver shimmer since I don't want to destroy the butterfly motif, but I've read that it's very shimmery and it makes the eyeshadow colors too shimmery if you actually mix them up. I don't like the applicators since I don't think they pick up color very well (in comparison to using fingers), but they're not horrible, per se. Plus, the design of the applicators is quite cute, so I'll forgive Guerlain for giving me poor applicators =P

The colors of the eyeshadows are an off-white, a very pale cool lilac, a medium warm pink, and a medium cool purple. With the exception of the off-white shade, all the shades are only very slightly shimmery if you don't touch the silver shimmers; the off-white is a bit more shimmery, but still nothing really loud. I feel like the off-white is also the most pigmented of the bunch, the rest take quite a few layers to show up properly on my rather pale skin. This low pigmentation level is the main reason for the negative reviews on Sephora, and also the reason why I didn't do a swatch for this product. In addition, because I'm obsessed with not touching the butterfly, I only have a very tiny area to work with, which makes the palette even harder to swatch. So for anyone who is looking to see a swatch, please refer to this post on KarlaSugar's site.

Following is the official Guerlain instructions for where to apply which color in case anyone is interested.

All pictures in this post were taken under white light.

In short: Amazingly beautiful packaging, but more of a collector's item than something you would use everyday. I'm definitely going to keep this palette so I can take it out every once in a while to admire it, but I don't foresee myself actually using this palette, ever.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Giorgio Armani & Shu Uemura: My Nordies Lipstick Experience

I discovered the beauty section of Nordstrom Rack several months ago. At first I was enraged at finding my Shu Uemura Ninagawa Mika Secret Luscious Rose palette on sale for almost 50% off the original price when I just bought it at full price a few months prior. However, I was also ecstatic at finding a variety of department store makeup items on sale, including a fair selection of Trish McEvoy, Stila, Giorgio Armani, Too Faced, and Shu Uemura items. I was able to ward off any temptation of buying makeup items from Nordstrom Rack for a while, but eventually ended up buying a Giorgio Armani Sheer Lipstick and a Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited not too long ago. I will be briefly reviewing these two items in this post.

I love the sleek black packaging with Giorgio Armani lipsticks. Even though it is plastic, the matte surface makes it look modern and chic, not cheap-looking like some drugstore lipstick packaging. I also like the embossed Giorgio Armani logo on the lipstick itself =) The color that I got is 02.

The creamy consistency of the lipstick is excellent, but it is unfortunately too sheer for my semi-pigmented lips. I'm not a big fan of opaque lipsticks so I thought the Sheer Lipstick line would fit my needs better, but I didn't expect it to be this sheer. Also, at the Nordstrom Rack I visited, only this Sheer Lipstick in 02 was a color I would consider putting on my lips in public. I rather like the light peachy color, so it's just too bad that it doesn't show up on my lips.

Moving on...

I've really wanted to buy a Shu Uemura lipstick for a while now since I love the futuristic packaging (I'm shallow =P) and I've heard some good things about them. The color I picked is PK302, again because it was the only color in the batch available that I would consider putting on my lips.

Unfortunately, perhaps because the Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited in PK302 I got was on sale, the texture was drier than I expected and not really what I consider good quality. In addition, I don't like the obvious silver shimmer particles in the lipstick, and the light pink color was also too sheer for my lips. I was too lazy to take a swatch photo for this since it looks very similar to the Giorgio Armani Sheer in 02, except the Shu Uemura is a little cooler.

The Giorgio Armani pictures in this post were taken under natural light, whereas the Shu Uemura pictures were taken under white light.

In short: A big disappointment for both purchases; both the Giorgio Armani Sheer Lipstick in 02 and the Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited in PK302 were too sheer for me and the texture of the Shu Uemura lipstick was too dry. Definitely will not be repurchasing either of these. My lesson learned is that even though it's great to buy department store makeup at prices lower than retail, the outlet still has a more limited selection and the quality may be questionable such as with the Shu lipstick.