Monday, September 30, 2013

Chanel Holiday 2013 Illusion D'Ombres: Initiation and Fatal - Photos and Swatches

This is not a thorough review, but I did want to quickly share a few better quality swatches and photos of the two new Illusion D'Ombres from Chanel's Holiday 2013 collection. As you can see they are both gorgeous

#827 Initiation

My first impression is that Initiation is a beautiful bronze/fawn/taupe shade, but it does have a lot of very fine bits of sparkle throughout. They reflect the light beautifully, but this may be something to keep in mind if you are not a fan of sparkle. However, it is less sparkly than products like MAC's pressed pigments or Bobbi Brown's sparkle shadows and the sparkles do seem to stay put, so hopefully this won't be an issue for most. The color is certainly an eye catching neutral and I imagine it will be universally flattering.

#837 Fatal 

Fatal is a lovely smoky silvered plum. It is shimmery but does not have the micro-sparkles as in Initiation. It reminds me a bit of shades like Urban Decay's Toasted and MAC's Satin Taupe, except it is more plum toned and the silvery shimmer makes it appear less warm. I haven't tried it on my eyes yet, but judging by swatches alone ... I think I'm in love!
From left to right is Fatal and Initiation both applied lightly and then very heavily

Top row left to right: Apparence and Initiation 
Bottom row left to right: Illusoire and Fatal 

To give you a better idea of the colors, here they are shown next to Apparence (released in 2012) and Illusoire (released in 2011). Colorwise, Fatal and Initiation are unlike any of the Illusion D'Ombres we've seen thus far. These two beautiful neutrals should have a wide appeal and are the type of shades that you can wear on their own with the addition of some black liquid liner and be out the door.

I was asked recently which shade I prefer and it was impossible for me to choose. Only time will tell if one will stand out as a favorite! 

Which do you like best? 

Chanel Rouge Allure Indécise

Indécise is a new Rouge Allure that was introduced with this fall's Rouge Moire collection and is also featured as part of the holiday collection, Nuit Infinie de Chanel. This was actually a happy accident of a purchase that I had not planned in advance. As I was browsing the holiday display I saw this and thought it might be a color I could get a lot of use out of, as I've been moving toward using nudes and lighter lipsticks more often. 

Indécise is a light pearly, warm pink-beige that is pale enough to be considered a nude but also dark enough that it doesn't wash me out completely. I was worried that it might come across as frosty, in an old-fashioned sort of way, but actually the shimmer is refined and not overly reflective. It did seem to darken slightly on the lips as time went on. It seemed to be fairly long lasting, which is a nice characteristic of the Rouge Allure formula.

Overall this shade is a winner for me and I can see reaching for it when wearing more colorful eye looks because it is so neutral and understated. Below is a comparison with all of the light and light-to-midtone Chanel lipsticks I have on hand. Have you ever noticed that some of Chanel's lipsticks that look muddy or brown-toned in the tube end up looking brighter and more flattering once applied? For example, Superstition looks dull and concealer-like in the tube, but then it magically brightens up on the skin!
Left to right:  #59 Nude, #04 Cashmere, #38 Superstition, #62 Ardent, #79 Plumetis, #107 Patchouli, #125 Indécise

Swatches are in order by formula (Rouge Cocos followed by Rouge Allures) and then item number.
  1. Rouge Coco #04 Cashmere 
  2. Rouge Coco #38 Superstition 
  3. Rouge Coco #79 Plumetis 
  4. Rouge Coco #107 Patchouli 
  5. Rouge Allure #59 Nude 
  6. Rouge Allure #62 Ardent 
  7. Rouge Allure #125 Indécise

Wearing Rouge Allure Indécise with edges defined slightly with Bobbi Brown's Ballet Pink lip pencil. 

Chanel Rouge Allure Indécise - shown in sunlight

For more thoughts on this shade and another view of it applied, visit Beautezine.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Overview of Chanel Holiday 2013 - Nuit Infinie de Chanel

It's hard to believe that holiday merchandise is already on display and the year is almost over. Each year seems to go by more quickly than the last. But I'm not complaining--this time of year is always fun for any makeup lover and the temptations are plentiful! 

I picked up a few items today from Chanel's holiday collection Nuit Infinie de Chanel. Included are two new, gorgeous Illusion D'Ombres ($36 limited edition): #827 Initiation a sparkly, mid-tone neutral bronze and #837 Fatal a shimmery, mid-tone silvered-plum. I am a fan of Illusion D'Ombres and felt I couldn't pass these two up, as they are the type of neutral shades that I love to wear on a daily basis, but with an extra added sparkle that will make them great for special occasions as well. Initiation seems to be the more sparkly of the two. More thoughts and photos to come, once I've had a chance to play around with them! 

I also purchased Indécise, one of the new Rouge Allure Luminous Intense lipsticks introduced recently in this Fall's Rouge Allure Moiré collection. I was told this shade is being re-promoted as part of the holiday collection. A few of the other items, including the star of the collection, the Ombres Matelassées Eye Shadow Palette in Charming, had not arrived yet.

Below are my quick in-store swatches of just a few items. I'm sorry they don't do these shadows justice but I thought I'd share them anyway in case they are helpful. I loved the look of the liquid liner in Bronze but decided I did not need it (although I sure do want it!). I also have my eye on the limited edition polish, Rouge Rubis, and may go back for it at some point. I was in a rush and didn't have a chance to try it on today, but judging by the bottle it looks like a beautiful, classic bright red.

Illusion D'Ombres Initiation (top) & Fatal (bottom), and  Liquid Graphique Eyeliner in Bronze 

Below is a list of all of the items included in this collection:

  • Ombres Matelassées Eye Shadow Palette Charming - soft beige, metallic beige, bronze khaki, bronze brown and dark matte purple
  • Joues Contraste Powder Blush Accent - pink beige
  • Poudre Universelle Libre (Natural Loose Finish Powder) Moon Light - peach beige
  • Perfection Lumiere Foundation #30 Beige - sandy beige (re-promote)
  • Illusion D’Ombre Eyeshadows: Initiation - platinum bronze, Fatal - silver purple
  • Mascara Gel Irisé Sparkling Top Coat - Platinum Bronze
  • Liquid Graphique Eyeliner - Bronze 
  • Inimitable Intense Mascara - Noir
  • Rouge Allure Luminous Intense Lip Colour: Radieuse - blue pink, Indécise - shimmering pink beige (re-promote), Farouche - shimmering chocolate brown (re-promote)
  • Rouge Allure Velvet: La Précieuse - vivid red, La Désirée - burgundy red
  • Le Vernis Nail Colour Rouge Rubis - vivid red, Accessoire - deep red brown (re-promote)

What do you think of the collection overall? Do you have anything on your wishlist? 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Tom Ford Orchid Haze Eyeshadow Quad: Photos, Swatches and Two Simple Looks

Tom Ford Orchid Haze Eyeshadow Quad

Look 1: Smoky Liner 

Eyes: Tom Ford Orchid Haze, MAC Rapidblack Penultimate Eye Liner, Laura Mercier Brown Copper Kohl Pencil, Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara Black, Benefit Erase Paste No. 1 Fair (concealer)   
Cheeks: Chantecaille Cheek Creme Coy 
Lips: Chanel Lip Pencil Tulip, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Interlude 
Face: Laura Mercier Smooth Finish Foundation Powder #04, Chantecaille Highlight Lumiere de Rose

On eyes I used the pale beige highlight shade all over the lid and then added some of the taupe to the middle of the lid. I then added some of the mauve shade in the crease and packed on the deep plum-brown along the outer third of the lid and blend it up a bit towards the crease. I lined the bottom waterline, and top and bottom lash lines with a dark shimmery brown pencil, smudged it sightly, and then applied a small amount of the mauve shadow to the bottom lash line to create a smokier effect. (I didn't use any base or primer with this look, which I don't recommend, but my excuse is that it was one of those mornings when I was running late and skipped it to save time!) 

On cheeks I used Chantecaille's Cheek Creme in Coy, a very pigmented warm coral shade, and then applied with a fan brush a bit of Chantecaille's Lumiere de Rose highlight, a pretty iridescent pink, to the cheekbones (unfortunately, the shimmer can't be seen in these photos because of the lighting situation). 

I filled in the entire lips lightly with Chanel's Tulip pencil and then applied Chanel's Rouge Coco Shine in Interlude on top. This is the first time I've tried this combo and it is OK, but I prefer Interlude alone. It's a lovely, glossy pale peach.

Left to right: Tom Ford Orchid Haze Eyeshadow Quad, Chantecaille Cheek Creme in Coy, Chantecaille Lumiere de Rose Highlight, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine #78 Interlude, and Chanel Lip Definer Tulip.

Chantecaille's Lumiere de Rose Highlight compact has a pretty, sculptural rose design

Look 2: Defined Daytime  

Eyes: NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base, YSL Touche Eclat #2 (used as concealer), Tom Ford Orchid Haze, Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner Dark Brown, Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Pencil Underground, Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara Black  
Cheeks: Chantecaille Cheek Creme Coy 
Lips: Chanel Tulip Lip Pencil, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Interlude 
Face: Estee Lauder Powder Foundation Desert, Chantecaille Highlight Lumiere de Rose

This second look is what I wore to work earlier today. This time I applied the shadows over a base (NARS Smudge Proof) and also used different liners for top and bottom and did not line the waterline. It's hard to tell by these photos, but using the base seemed to enhance the vibrancy of the shadows. (I'm sorry there are no full face photos--they did not come out very well, but I used the same lip and cheek products as in the prior look.) 

This type of look below is the main way I do my shadow these days. I know there must be more creative ways to use this palette and I hope, dear long-time readers, that you aren't bored by my "one trick pony" eye looks. I tend to stick to what works in an office setting and also for my age (no longer a spring chicken). To be honest, with my eye shape I find it difficult to do anything more elaborate. But I am always open to suggestions and requests!

Here I used the shimmery taupe shade all over the lid, the medium mauve shade in the crease, the pale champagne/beige as a brow bone and inner corner highlight, and used a small amount of the dark chocolate-plum shade close to the lash line as well as a bit on the outer corner. I then lined the top lash line with Stila's liquid liner and bottom with Urban Decay's Underground.  

I love the versatility of the Orchid Haze palette. With it you are able to create a few variations of casual daytime looks, or you can go dramatic with a dark chocolate-plum smoky eye, or very subtle with just a wash of pale, all-over shimmer. 

The texture of these powders is soft and silky and they apply very nicely, with minimal fallout. The shades are nicely pigmented, although the pale champagne/beige is on the sheer side, but I like its refined texture--it is not chalky or frosty as some highlight shades can be. 

Some makeup lovers may find that they already own similar shades that can produce an equivalent look, but if you're a fan of Tom Ford Beauty I do think this is a beautiful and useful palette to add to your collection. It contains a great selection of basic, elegant neutrals that will be convenient to reach for when you want to quickly create a cohesive look with shades that you know will work perfectly together. 

As always, thank you for visiting and I hope the rest of your week is great. I am looking forward to Friday and the weekend! 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Face of the Day: Pastel Pink Orchid

One of the items used in today's look is a pastel pink and orchid shadow duo I purchased long ago from Prescriptives, back when they had counters in Macy's stores (the brand now has an online-only presence at where you can still find many of their iconic products). The duo was barely used before I stashed it away, and while organizing recently I pulled it out from the bottom of a container and thought I'd give it another try before tossing it! I don't normally go for pastel shades on eyes but, for me, the addition of heavy liner helps to make it more wearable. Below is a list of a few similar shades that could stand in for these two:

Pale Pink

MAC Seedy Pearl 
MAC Pigment Pink Opal
MAC Pink Freeze 
Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Pink Opal 
Chantecaille Lilac Rose 


Laura Mercier African Violet 
Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Orchid 
MAC Creme de Violet 
The right half of NARS Sugarland Duo 
Lancome Camisole (discontinued)

Prescriptives In Bloom Eye Color Duo "Lily"

Here are swatches of everything used to create this quick and simple look: 
Left to right:
Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner - Dark Brown
MAC Eye Kohl - Heirloom
Prescriptives In Bloom Eye Color Duo - Lily
Bare Minerals READY Blush/Luminizer - The Natural HighThe Shining Moment 
Urban Decay 24/7 Lip Pencil - Illegal 
Chanel Rouge Coco - Gardenia MAC Lipstick - Myth 

On eyes I used the pale pastel pink on the lid and the darker shimmery orchid shade in the crease, with Stila's brown liquid liner on top lashline, MAC's Heirloom on bottom lashline, and black mascara. On cheeks I used a combination of the two shades in the BareMinerals Blush/Luminizer palette. On lips I used Chanel's Gardenia (a shimmery mid-tone rose). I used MAC's Myth to tone down the shimmer and lighten it up a bit and then lightly defined and blended in the edges with Urban Decay's Illegal pencil.  

I purchased Stila's Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner for the first time and have been impressed by its longevity and also like its finely-tapered tip. Whenever I switch to a new type of felt-tip liner I have to use it a few times before I'm able to figure out the best method of application. Each one I've tried is shaped a bit differently and creates the "wing" slightly differently. To make things easier, I should just settle on one brand, but I have yet to become loyal to any in particular. Do you have any favorites?

I love MAC's Heirloom liner. It is a silvered-lavender and is one of my favorite shades to define the lower lashline when wearing plums or purples, although it coordinates well with just about anything because it comes across as quite neutral. It adds brightness to the eyes, but is not garish or overly metallic and I find it easier to wear than a pure silver tone. Sadly, this was a limited-edition shade and is no longer available, but I hope MAC brings it back in the future!

Nails Inc.'s Marylebone (featured in yesterday's post) 

I hope you are all having a relaxing weekend -- thanks for stopping by!