Sunday, February 19, 2012

Clarins Eclat Minute Blush - Instant Light Blush

Eclat Minute Blush ($28) is a new product recently launched by Clarins. It is currently available in three shades, 01 Vitamin Pink, 02 Coral Tonic, and 03 Brown Fizz.  I was intrigued by this after a sales associate demonstrated it to me in Nordstrom, but at first wasn't sold. After viewing a tutorial by Lisa Eldridge in which she used the shade Coral Tonic I decided to give it a try. 

The product has a thick liquid consistency and is packaged in a clear plastic container with a gold twist-off cap, and is about the height of a typical small nail polish bottle. It has a pleasant, non-offensive floral (rose?) scent. The color can be dabbed directly onto the cheeks with the over-sized doe-foot sponge applicator and then blended out with fingertips or with a blending brush, if preferred. Quite a bit of product is loaded onto the applicator so there is enough for both cheeks without dipping back into the container. It can get a little messy around the top due to the creamy liquid texture, but it's not a big issue. I'm accustomed to powder and cream blushes, so for me this texture is kind of different and fun to work with. I do think this product, like most liquid products, is something I'll try to use up right away, unlike my powder blushes, which I feel are safe to use over several years.  

Of the two shades featured here, Vitamin Pink is my absolute favorite. It looks bright in the container, but blends out nicely to a pretty, healthy-looking carnation pink with a bit of a shimmery glow, and lasts well throughout the day. Highly recommended! 

Coral Tonic is a sheer, soft peach shade with subtle pink iridescence and gives a nice dewy look to the skin, but doesn't show up well on my skin tone, even with multiple layers. I don't know if it's because I did not wear foundation underneath when I tried it. I will need to experiment a little more with this one! This shade might work as a highlighting blush on dark skins and also would be suitable for those who like more subdued cheek color. See it in action in makeup artist Lisa Eldridge's video below (at the 4:12 mark). It does show up nicely on her.

The photo below shows Coral Tonic on the left and Vitamin Pink on the right, both blended out and then applied straight from the tube. The photo above was taken at the end, when I blended the two swatches for each shade together into one large heavy swatch of each.

Thanks for visiting! 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Violets & Roses

Hi everyone! I hope your week is off to a great start. Today's post is all about two of my favorite flowers, colors, and fragrance notes: violet and rose. I thought it would also be fitting to include some of the new limited edition polishes from the Roses Ultimes de Chanel collection. Scroll to the end for swatches of these. 

One of my favorite soliflore fragrances is Annick Goutal's La Violette. This was a limited edition fragrance released a few years ago, but I noticed over the weekend that it is available again. For anyone fond of violet scents, this one is definitely worth a try! To me, it is a more sophisticated and longer-lasting version of the inexpensive, traditional Spanish and Cuban violet waters sold in drugstores, such as Augustin Reyes' Royal Violets, Para Mi Bebe or Crusellas, just to name a few. I'm not sure if these violet waters are as common in other parts of the U.S., but if you grew up in Miami, you are surely familiar with them. They are traditionally used as splashes for infants and children, but are worn by many adults as well. The sweet powdery violet scent is actually one of my very first fragrance memories. Many of the young girls in the grade school I attended wore generous amounts of the stuff on a daily basis. So, I guess you could say the violet scent is a nostalgic one for me. 

Over the holidays I purchased these two Diptyque candles. They are pricey so I burn them sparingly, but when I come home from work my bedroom smells divine! 

A few of the fragrances I own that are based on rose or have strong rose notes are Jo Malone's Red Roses, Lancome's Mille & Une Roses, YSL's Paris Roses Enchantees (a limited-edition spring-time version of the original Paris), MAC's Dejarose, and Bond No. 9's West Side. I've read and heard repeatedly that rose scents are associated with little old ladies but I don't care! I love them anyway. Many, many years ago, while in middle school, my friends and I used and loved the unabashedly cheap old classic, Perfumer's Workshop Tea Rose, and I recall thinking as a child that the fragrance of my mom's rose-scented Avon body cream in the little pink tub was so pretty!


A few years ago I was briefly into jewelry-making and beading. I got these little coral rosettes at one of the many bead and gem shops downtown in the jewelry district and attached them to sterling silver posts.
Earrings from Sorreli, purchased at Nordstrom a few years ago.

L'Epi de Provence's Violet Moss and MAC's Asphalt Flower  

I purchased this little flacon of Guerlain's Insolence parfum from the Guerlain boutique in "France" at EPCOT in Walt Disney World. At 0.25 oz, the bottle is diminutive, but a little drop of this potent, candied-violet elixir goes a long way! 

Bulgari's Blu II is not composed entirely of violet, but I definitely detect a violet note in there somewhere! It's a nice, everyday sort of fragrance.   

Van Cleef & Arpel's Feerie in Eau de Parfum strength (sapphire blue bottle), and Eau de Toilette (light blue bottle). 

 Liz Palacios San Francisco necklace, purchased at Nordstrom a few years ago.


Below is a closer look at three of the new Chanel polishes along with a sampling of violet and rose shades from my collection. I purchased Frisson, a sheer pale pink with shimmer that's very similar to Mica Rose but with warmer-toned, slightly larger shimmer particles; Distraction, a beautiful salmon creme with subtle rose shimmer; and Tentation, a shimmery, vibrant blue-rose/magenta that's really gorgeous, if not particularly unique. (Also offered in the collection, but not shown here, is the shade Attraction--a frosty, retro looking white-pearl shade.)  

  1. Chanel Frisson 
  2. Chanel Mica Rose
  3. Paul & Joe #10
  4. OPI Pink Friday
  5. Butter London Rosie Lee
  6. Chanel Distraction
  7. Paul & Joe #010
  8. Rimmel English Rose
  9. Sephora by OPI Casanova Is So Into Me 
  10. OPI Kiss Me On My Tulips 
  11. OPI It's All Greek To Me 
  12. Jessica Seductress
  13. Chanel Tentation
  14. OPI Love is a Racket 
  15. Paul & Joe #012 
  16. Dolce & Gabbana Love
  17. Zoya Cyma
  18. Leighton Denny Best Seller 

  1. Sephora Amethyst Stiletto
  2. NARS Diamond Life
  3. Sephora Girls Want Tenderness 
  4. Sally Hansen Violet Voltage
  5. Sephora by OPI Violet's Just Get Married
  6. Zoya Tru
  7. Zoya Lotus
  8. Cover Girl Violet Vision
  9. Rescue Beauty Lounge Catherine H. 
  10. Butter London No More Waity Katy
  11. Dolce & Gabbana Amethyst
  12. Sephora Full Moon Party 
  13. Butter London HRH
  14. Revlon No Shrinking Violet 
  15. Laura Mercier Twilight 
  16. Leighton Denny Embellish Me  
  17. China Glaze Sweet Hook 
  18. Sephora by OPI Sin-cerely Violet

Wishing everyone a lovely Valentine's Day. Whether or not you are single or in a relationship, I hope you have the chance to do something you enjoy today!