Product Reviews

On the Bathroom Shelf: Diptyque Paris Skin Care

Published in: Diptyque, Product Reviews, Skin Care

On the bathroom shelf, Diptyque Skin Care

Diptyque Paris skin care

Diptyque Paris, those purveyors of fancy-schmancy candles, now have a pricey new skin care line called L’Art du Soin, which le Google machine translates to “The Art of Care.”

And I totally get that. I’ve been giving a few of the items a try this month, and my mug does feel like it’s been properly cared for and nurtured. The gentle products haven’t aggravated my normally fussy, acne-prone combination skin at all, which is quite an accomplishment.

The heavily scented products contain some unusual sounding ingredients, too, like marble powder (Wha? As in statues and countertops?), and other things, like sweet almond oil, that are more usual for skin care.

The overall presentation is très posh. These are the kind of skin care goodies you find in those fancy bathrooms at five-star hotels frequented by movie stars and diplomats.

After using them for a while, I see these as great getaway products. Vacation products. But when the plane lands and it’s back to the real world grind, I think I’d want to resume my aggressive anti-aging, anti-acne agenda.

Gimme, gimme, gimme, the stuff that slows down time’s march across my face and prevents the zits, which left to their own devices would take over my chin (those @ssholes), from exacting their reign of terror.

For me, the standouts in the line include the Infused Facial Water ($55), which contains damask rose and geranium extracts and smells amazeballs — like someone (either Prince Charming or a stalker) left 10 dozen roses on my doorstep. Lightly hydrating, it doesn’t make my skin feel sticky, which is great.

The Moisturizing Protective Lotion ($72 OMG!) has SPF 15 and absorbs quickly into my skin. It also layers well with makeup and looks lovely in pics (none of that SPF flashback).

Diptyque Radiance Boosting Powder

Radiance Boosting Powder, $58

Diptyque Infused Facial Water

Diptyque Infused Facial Water ($55) and Moisturizing Protective Lotion SPF 15 ($72)

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Recently Reformulated Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight Casts Its Spell on Even the Littlest Lashes

Published in: Eyes, Makeup, Product Reviews, Rouge Bunny Rouge

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

I’m always down for makeup magic. (Somebody pass girlfriend some eye of newt.)

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara ($29) leaves lashes so defined, separated and fanned out — even the tiniest little lashes at the corners — that I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they were made at Hogwarts.

That’s because magic is the idea behind Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara and its new formula, which does not contain bat wings, frog toes, lizard legs, triethanolamine, silicone, fragrance or alcohol.

The creamy formula does, however, contain pure pigments, soft waxes keratin and conditioners to keep the mascara lightweight, flexible and easy to layer.

Seriously, pile that ish on! It does not clump.

I actually never tried the original Witchery formula, so I can’t compare this new version to that, but I can tell you how much I lurve it. :)

When it comes to getting those individual lashes separated and pinpoint defined, it’s bad@ss like a 20th-level wizard. The plastic brush works like a fine-toothed comb, drawing out even the littlest lashes from their secret hiding places.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Besides separating and darkening lashes (ooh, blacker than my cold, cold heart), Midnight also turns them into a ballerina — and by that I mean that it grants them excellent extension.

(Picture Ryan Gosling doing hot yoga.)

Wait, what?

I guess the most important question now is this: is Witchery perfect?

Is it the UFC-champion, gold-medal-winning tube of lash crack I’ve been looking for since, like, forever?

No, I wouldn’t say that. I don’t think it’s the world’s greatest mascara for lash curl or lift, or for increasing thickness at the base, although I do think it does some of that, but it’s a wizard when it comes to enchantingly dark, super separated lashes.

Witchery comes in two shades — Midnight, the deep black I’m wearing here on both my upper and lower lashes; and Golden Darkness, a dark auburn. They’re $29 each.

Rouge Bunny Rouge is sometimes still tough to find here in the U.S., but a few stores do carry the line, and they’re also available online at beautyhabit.com.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara in Midnight

Rouge Bunny Rouge Witchery Modelling Mascara before (left) and after two coats (right)

Before (left) and after two coats (right)

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The Tarte Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette: When This Snake Bites, It’s Good for Your Skin

Published in: Eyes, Face, Makeup, Palettes, Product Reviews, Tarte

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Wearing the new Tarte Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette ($38) on my eyes and cheeks

Snakes.

Freak out, man! SNAKES! They’re all over Tarte’s fall collection, including the Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette ($38), which is kind of like the star serpent of the nine-piece release slithering now across Tarte counters and online.

The collection includes both limited edition products and new pieces bound for the permanent line, with the After Dark palette being one of the limited edition items.

The palette houses nine powder products — six eyeshadows, a bronzer, a highlighter and a blush — in colors inspired by the deep orchid hues of a rainforest at dusk, and in true Tarte fashion, the whole enchilada is cruelty-free, and made without parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, triclosan, sodium lauryl sulfate or gluten.

Like many of Tarte’s products, this one is designed to deliver skin benefits which, in a way, I’m kind of conflicted about…

I mean, I love that whole idea — the idea of makeup that doubles as a skin care product — but I’m just not sure how well it works.

With serums and moisturizers, I can actually see and feel them being absorbed into my skin, but with makeup, it’s kind of just sitting right there on top, ya know?

Is it doing anything? I don’t know, but I figure it can’t hurt.

The secret ingredient in these is something Tarte calls colored clay, a super absorbent clay able to auto-magically color correct and address your specific skin and complexion concerns, and these powder definitely do absorb oil well.

Might be something to consider if you have very oily lids and/or cheeks.

The colors — plums, tans and golds — are all fairly neutral, and not too cool nor warm, making them good fits for a wide range of skin tones.

It’s hard to really mess up when using the eyeshadows, too, no matter how much I pack on, because they aren’t crazy pigmented (I’d say they’re about a medium). They blend out beautifully without looking too heavy.

I do notice a little fallout, but it’s not a big deal. Just tap off your brush first, or work it into the back of your hand.

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

In terms of performance, the eyeshadows put up major points. In a perfect world, though, I might darken the darker shades a bit.

As for the blush, wow, so beautiful. That matte plummy tone sure looks natural on the skin, but the Park Ave. Princess bronzer? Eh. I think that one’s just OK. Probably better suited for lighter skin tones than mine.

Oh, about the gold highlighter and gold eyeshadow — holy highlight that, man! We’re talking really, really shimmery.

All and all, I’d say it’s a lovely palette — perfect for gals/guys who like natural looks with a kick.

I usually prefer a little more oomph from my eyeshadows, but I still see a lot here I’m sure I’ll wear this fall.

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

Tarte Rainforest After Dark Palette

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Contemplating Classy Cheek Color With the New Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange Blush in Sensual Reflections

Published in: Face, Laura Mercier, Makeup, Product Reviews

Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections

Wearing the new Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections, from the Sensual Reflections fall 2014 collection), on my cheeks

You know, as I sit here thinking about it — reflecting, if you will — it makes sense that Laura Mercier’s new $42 Cheek Mélange Blush is called Sensual Reflections, because it’s part of the upcoming fall Sensual Reflections collection.

But…when I wear it and see myself in the mirror, I feel like it should have been called Quiet Reflections instead.

Like, I should be sitting quietly under a willow tree by a pond and contemplating the meaning of life.

“Tabby, or not tabby, that is the question.”

Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections

Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections, $42

And, uh…I don’t exactly think of myself as a “sensually reflective” kind of person. Really, I feel about as sensually reflective as a rind of parmesan cheese, but that’s neither here nor there.

Sensual Reflections, with the way its satin finish softly shines, is one of those beautiful blushes that makes an understated statement, and with hints of peach, plum and gold, it works on most every skin tone, whether used as a blush or a highlighter.

Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections

“Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange features hand-selected, complementary shades to add natural, glowing colour to cheeks. It provides natural radiance to complexion and is designed to complement all skin tones.” — Laura Mercier PR

It’s one of the limited edition pieces in the Sensual Reflections collection, and I think it’s the most striking piece in the entire launch.

I mean, just look at that pretty pan! It looks like a closeup of a cosmos flower…

You’re supposed to mix the peachy pink beige, golden beige and sheer plum together, and apply the combined color to your cheeks for a natural, flattering glow.

Laura Mercier Cheek Mélange in Sensual Reflections

All three shades mixed together

This blush is all about the finish, which is sort of halfway between satin and sheer. The finely-milled powder reflects light evenly and subtly when it’s on my cheeks — glowing, but not looking frosty at all (great for gals/guys of all ages). You end up looking like you just left the spa and had a facial done by the World’s Best Esthetician. :)

Also, because it isn’t too heavily pigmented, you won’t end up with crazy clown cheeks (an added plus!).

Laura Mercier Cheek Melange Sensual Reflections

Additional makeup worn in this look: Laura Mercier Satin Matte Eye Colours in Plum Allure, Gold Seduction and Sensual Pink (also from the Sensual Reflections collection), Laura Mercier Kohl Eye Pencil in Black Gold and theBalm Read My Lips Lip Gloss in Snap

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The Primary Colors Are of Primary Importance in My Look Today With NARS Torre del Oro Nail Polish

Published in: Nails, NARS, Product Reviews

NARS Torre del Oro

Primary colors!

Wow, when did that happen…?

When did we teleport back to eighth-grade art class?

I’m wearing red, yellow and blue today and feeling like I’m sketching an apple and using those grids to get the proportions correct (you know the ones I mean).

My eighth-grade art teacher would always go off on tangents about the primary colors, and then, while he was rambling, he’d suddenly get this glassy, faraway look in his eyes, like he was dreaming about the seminal summer he spent on the coast of Italy painting and eating pasta.

Actually, now that I think about it, that glassy look could’ve been due to something else, as I’m pretty sure he was a total stoner, but I digress…

Anywho! Besides learning how hard it is to draw bowls and vases (those curves are seriously freaking difficult), I also learned that you really can’t go wrong with pairing red with yellow and blue. It’s a classic color combo.

This morning, I put on this bright highlighter yellow top, and then slipped on some layering necklaces with red, yellow, blue and white.

And a blue and gold bracelet.

NARS Torre del Oro

NARS Torre del Oro

Then, to play off the red accents in the necklaces, I chose a cherry red nail polish by NARS called Torre del Oro ($20), an opaque blue-based red with killer pigment (you could easily get away with a single layer, no problem).

NARS Torre del Oro swatch

Cherry red, she said…

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