Makeup

Next Stop: Kitties! The New Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch Is Almost Purr-Fect

Published in: Giorgio Armani, Makeup, Palettes, Product Reviews

Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch

Wearing the new Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch, $100

Tickets, please! Please have your tickets ready. Now boarding for the Giorgio Armani Orient Excess!

Good afternoon! My name is Karen, and I’ll be your conductor today.

This is a holiday train. Before we leave Novato station, all tray tables and seat backs must be in the upright position. Fasten your safety belt, and please keep your new Orient Excess Palette Clutch ($100) in sight at all times.

A two-piece holiday set, the $100 limited edition Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch includes a lush, velvet clutch and a two-tiered palette with an illuminating powder and three powder eyeshadows.

Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch

The set includes the blue clutch and two-tiered blue compact palette…

Be advised that pickpockets are known to target passengers on the train, and thefts have been on the rise ever since this two-piece set arrived on Giorgio Armani counters (it’s also available online).

Management believes that a local criminal syndicate of crazy cat ladies is responsible. The CCLs have been targeting the set’s blue compact for two reasons.

First, the thieves are unable to resist the sumptuous design on the illuminating face powder; second, the three powder eyeshadow colors remind them of kitties.

The three eyeshadows on the shadow tier of the round palette are classic Armani. No fallout whatsoever, and they’re smoother than a tomcat lothario.

CCLs report that the shades look kind of like cat fur colors. The dark brown on the far left reminds them of a Havana Brown, the middle shade a Russian Blue, and the golden taupe on the far left evokes a Siamese.

According to one CCL, “The shimmery finish doesn’t emphasize the fine lines on my lids, either.”

Giorgio Armani Orient Excess Palette Clutch

When asked about the compact’s illuminating powder, the CCL replied, “It’s not my favorite. It’s very sheer, and I can barely see any sheen or shine on my skin. I dig subtle finishes, but this one’s a little too quiet…”

She did, however, like the clutch. “Totally cute!” she said. “But it’s small and doesn’t fit a lot. Just a compact, a lipstick and maybe your ID. You can forget about your phone though.”

Speaking as a part-time CCL who only moonlights as a conductor, the blueish gray shadow in the center totally reminds me of a Russian Blue in my neighborhood.

I may or may not have exclaimed, “Ooh, kitties!” the first time I put these shadows on my lids.
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The New Chanel Rouge Allure Glosses: For Full-Coverage Chanel Firepower When You Need a Little Chanel

Published in: Chanel, Lips, Makeup, Product Reviews

Chanel Rouge Allure Gloss

Oh hai, flu shot!

If I’m going to have a stranger stick me with a sharp object, you better believe I’ll be wearing a little Chanel, because Chanel makes everything better (even flu shots).

At least that’s what I told myself when I applied the new Rouge Allure Gloss in 15 Sensible (one of 10 shades, $34 each, available now at Chanel counters and online) before I went to get my flu shot today.

Chanel Rouge Allure Gloss wands from the left: 13 Affriolant, 15 Sensible, 17 Supreme, 18 Seduction and 19 Pirate

From the left: 13 Affriolant, 15 Sensible, 17 Supreme, 18 Seduction and 19 Pirate

Every year when I walk into the flu shot clinic and catch that first glimpse of the needle, the panic sets in… I start mumbling and sweating profusely, and my eyes expand to double their normal size.

I had hoped that 15 Sensible would make me look less, I dunno, frightened? Rabid? Ready to rumble? I’d always reckoned that full-coverage lip glosses like the Rouge Allures tended to convey the appearance of serenity and properly aligned chakras.

But that could just be the crazy beauty logic talking. :)

Today, as I bared my left shoulder, concentrated on kittens, and waited for the nurse to jam the needle into my arm (“This won’t hurt at all,” she said. “Just a little pinch.”), I set my mouth into a stylishly glossy Chanel smile, even though I really wanted to scream, “THAT SH*T STINGS, MA!”

Chanel Rouge Allure Gloss packaging

Chanel Rouge Allure Gloss in 15 Sensible

15 Sensible

Chanel Rouge Allure Gloss in 13 Affriolant

13 Affriolant


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Whether Seated in a Balcony or on a Bus, You’ll Look Elegant in Guerlain’s Night at the Opera Holiday Collection

Published in: Collections, Guerlain, Makeup

Guerlain Night at the Opera Holiday Collection

Unlike me at karaoke, Guerlain’s new Night at the Opera holiday collection hits all the right notes, tra-la-la-la-laaaaaaaa!

Please pardon my need to insert a vibrato on that last laaaaaaaa! It’s leftover trauma from living with a slightly overbearing opera singer in college. She regularly criticized my breathing technique when I sang around the house (Really, dude? It was just a little Alanis Morissette while I did my chem lab homework.) and held notes out for a beat too long when she covered pop songs.

I still can’t listen to I Still Believe by Brenda K. Starr without thinking of her take on the chorus…

Guerlain Night at the Opera

The 10-piece limited edition Guerlain Night at the Opera collection

At any rate, one does not have to enjoy opera, or to have lived with an overbearing opera singer, to derive great joy from the classic holiday reds and golds in this 10-piece limited edition collection for eyes, cheeks, lips and nails.

But an appreciation for opera may translate into a greater appreciation for the release’s finer details, like the bows on the packaging, which are supposed to represent the bows worn by men at big galas, or the bows worn by the ballerinas in their hair.

Me likes. I’m a sucker for strong themes and collections that tell a story. :)

Guerlain Meteorites Perles d'Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Meteorites Perles d’Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

I also like that when I’ve worn pieces from this collection over the past couple weeks, I’ve gotten pretty good feedback — both from El Hub, also known as “the man who never notices anything,” and from you guys, too.

I was wearing pieces from A Night at the Opera on my eyes, lips and cheeks in the Mia Bun Ease post last week and received a number of positive inquiries about the makeup I was wearing.

Guerlain Gloss d'Enfer Maxi Shine Lipgloss in 901 L'Oiseau de Feau

Gloss d’Enfer Maxi Shine Lipgloss in 901 L’Oiseau de Feau on my lips, and the Petrouchka Palette on my eyes and cheeks

The fresh, glowing peachy golden cheeks, shimmery beige and copper eyes, and glossy golden lips — those are pure Guerlain, man. What I affectionately refer to as (in air quotes) “that magical Guerlain holiday glow.” It’s makeup that catches your eye but doesn’t SCREAM IN YOUR FACE.

In that way I think Guerlain totally got this collection right. Yes, it’s a holiday release, and it’s made to feel glamorous and indulgent, but the pieces are also versatile enough to wear during the workweek leading up to the big gala.

Typical for Guerlain, the products are hella expensive. Thankfully, they also exude quality. The eyeshadows, powders and blushes blend effortlessly, and everything — from the lipsticks to the glosses to the nail polishes and that to-die-for jar of golden pinkish peach highlighter (SWOON!) — looks high-end.

If you’re going to take a closer look at the collection on counter, don’t miss the Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, the Meteorites Pereles d’Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, Gloss d’Enfer Maxi Shine Lipgloss in L’Oiseau de Feau, or the nail polishes, especially if you like subtly radiant golds, beiges and coppers.

Le sigh! I could happily wear these pieces every day for a year. With these colors and finishes, warmer skin tones will make out like bandits.

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, $90

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, $90

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, $90

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, eyeshadows

Guerlain Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks

Petrouchka Palette for Eyes and Cheeks, blushes

Guerlain Meteorites Perles d'Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Meteorites Perles d’Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Guerlain Meteorites Perles d'Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Perles d’Etoiles Illuminating Pearls, $60

Meteorites Perles d'Etoiles Illuminating Pearls

Meteorites Perles d’Etoiles Illuminating Pearls


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With These Nudes, You’re Fully Covered: The Full-Coverage Illamasqua Glamore Lipsticks in Tease, Cherub and Naked

Published in: Illamasqua, Lips, Makeup, Product Reviews

Illamasqua Glamore Lipstick in Naked

Glamore Lipstick in Naked

When Sephora stopped carrying Illamasqua (bummer), it made the brand a little harder to find here in the U.S. for those of us who don’t happen to live within driving distance of the Kryolan City stores in Chicago or Toronto.

But if you do live within day-trip distance, and/or you don’t mind paying extra for shipping to order online, you might want to check out Glamore, Illamasqua’s line of full-coverage lipsticks released earlier this fall, because talk about pigment up the wazoo!

Illamasqua Glamore Lipsticks from the left: Tease, Naked and Cherub

Illamasqua Glamore Lipsticks from the left in Tease, Naked and Cherub ($30.02 each)

Ilamasqua Glamore Lipstick in Tease

Glamore Lipstick in Tease


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When Halloween Spirits and Team Spirit Collide: The Sally Hansen Insta-Dry Fast Dry Nail Colors in Pumpkin Queen, OMGhost, Night Fright and Scaredy Matte

Published in: Drugstore Beauty Finds, Nails, Sally Hansen

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Fast Dry Nail Colors from the left: Night Fright, Pumpkin Queen, OMGhost and Scaredy Matte, $5 each

The Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Fast Dry Nail Colors from the left in Night Fright, Pumpkin Queen, OMGhost and Scaredy Matte ($5 each)

world-series-mani-2014In line at Target last Sunday afternoon…

GIANTS SUPER FAN LADY WEARING HEAD-TO-TOE ORANGE AND BLACK GIANTS GEAR: “I like your Giants nails!”

ME: “Oh! Thanks!”

ME (INSIDE VOICE): I probably shouldn’t tell her that I know nothing about baseball…or that this is actually a Halloween-inspired mani.

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color Halloween Shades

GIANTS SUPER FAN: “That offense in game four…”

ME: “…nothing short of amazing.”

ME (INSIDE VOICE): What the hell am I doing?

GIANTS SUPER FAN: “How about that Sandoval?”

ME: “Right!? Amazing!”

ME (INSIDE VOICE): Change the subject, change the subject, change the subject…

GIANTS SUPER FAN: “I hope he gets over that stomach bug soon.”

ME: “Me too. Tummy troubles are the worst!”

Awkward pause…

ME: “You should totally do a Giants mani to match your Giants gear.”

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color in Pumpkin Queen

Clockwise from my thumb: Night Fright (glossy black), Pumpkin Queen (glossy orange) and Scaredy Matte (matte black)

GIANTS SUPER FAN: “I’d love that! But geez, I don’t have time to paint my nails.”

ME: “These Sally Hansen Insta-Dry Nail Colors would be perfect for you then. They only take five minutes to dry.”
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