Category Archives: Upscale Beauty
Yes, I know I’ve been gone for a looonnnggg time (and an even longer story) but I’m back and guess what I’ve brought with me? Not just a preview, but some nice picspam of the new Marc Jacobs Beauty collection that premiered at Sephora on August 9th!
Sephora addicts, I mean, VIB’s got the chance to purchase from a select few items for 48 hours and the two products I chose were the Magic Marc’er eyeliner and Lust for Lacquer lip vinyl in ‘Stolen Kisses’.
Standard Disclaimer > I own stock in LVMH which is the parent company of Marc Jacobs Beauty.
‘Stolen Kisses’ Lip Vinyl by Marc Jacobs Beauty – $28
Me being the lip gloss junkie that I am, I picked up Stolen Kisses–a lovely deep raspberry with shimmer and a sheer finish. Reminds me of a Wet & Wild lipgloss I could barely afford when I was a high school student in the 80′s (yes, dating myself here). Wore a really nice few hours (about three) through Wawa coffee, a glass of water and tea. I reapplied it after a few hours purely because I love the tingly feel. It just feels good to put on!
However, at the $28 price tag I was a bit torn about purchasing another. My gold standard in lipgloss, Illamasqua intense lip gloss, comes in at around $20 and has more staying power and intense color. But in Marc Jacobs’ favor his lip vinyls have a little ‘paddle’ foot applicator (Illamasqua’s has a small brush) which is wonderful for gals like me who have very full lips. Now I did get a chance to see the entire lip vinyl collection in person and was pleased to find out that unlike Stolen Kisses, there are more opaque lip vinyls that literally were packed with color. Truth Or Dare and Boom Boom! are tops on my list for my next haul.
Magic Marc’er in ‘Blacquer’ – $30
Picked this calligraphy-style eyeliner pen in Blacquer. Love,love, LOVE how balanced this felt-tipped eyeliner feels in my hand to produce such a precisely lined eye it’s to die for. When I say ‘balanced’, I mean the design makes it easier to concentrate on where you want to exactly line your eyes and it is very easy to use whether you are a novice or an expert. The black is very black. One of my biggest pet peeves about black eyeliner is that most of the ones on the market are ‘off black’. This one is anything but.
If I had to buy just *one* item from the Marc Jacobs Beauty collection it would be this eyeliner. The fact this eyeliner is manufactured in Japan is not to be overlooked. Once you hold in in your hands, and see how easy it is to line your eyes, you’ll wonder what you ever did without this. On a side note, you could tuck this baby in with your folio alongside of another pen and who would know the difference but you?
For more Marc Jacobs Beauty items that have caught my eye, and some ‘in the wild’ pics I took of the collection at Sephora, beam on over to my Pinterest board. To purchase, head on over to Sephora.com, MarcJacobs.com or your freestanding Sephora store.
Looks like Make Up For Ever has a brand new foundation out and in a wide range of shades!
Make Up For Ever’s new Pro Finish foundation looks to be direct competitor to MAC’s ubiquitous Studio Fix foundation. Available in a range of twenty-five (25) shades, it can be applied wet for a sheer finish or dry for a matte and full coverage finish. I’ve never been quite pleased with the existing powder foundation from MUFE so it is very exciting to see this new product and formula.
I tried applying this to my bare skin in Sephora using the new tapered foundation kabuki brush. The foundation went on flawlessly and the tapered brush expertly laid the foundation down in those challenging areas of the nose bridge and eye sockets. It was very easy to blend when dry and the resulting finish was nice and matte. I believe a sponge applicator is included with the compact but if you are prone to breakouts as I am, toss the sponge and go with the foundation brush. Even with all of the swatches I’ve shown here, my ideal shade is #175. Why this color was not included in the Deep skintone sample card is beyond me. Interesting how I am #75 in the Velvet Matte formula and #175 in Pro Finish.
Definitely check out the foundation Kabuki brush. I am beyond impressed with how well it applies and blends this foundation. The bristles are soft and deliver practically mistake-proof application. This is definitely on the list to be reviewed/Florida Tested when I head to Disney World in July.
Make Up For Ever’s new Pro Finish Powder foundation is now available exclusively at Sephora stores and Sephora.com.
If there was ever one eye makeup product my oil-slick eyelids could never go without, it would be Too Faced Shadow Insurance. And when I spotted this new Champagne shade I had to have it!
Too Faced Shadow Insurance (TFSI) is a waterproof, sweat proof, Florida Hot-proof eye shadow primer that has always kept my eye makeup flawless all day at the office and all day slugging through the parks at Disney World. It is truly one of those indispensible products I cannot live without. Well, I could but my eye shadow makeup would look a hot mess and I’d be stuck using just eyeliner again.
This awesome eye shadow primer is described by Too Faced as a ‘nude shimmer’ eye shadow primer. As compared to Candlelight TFSI, it is more beige. Lemon Drop TFSI is matte and slightly yellow in contrast to Champagne TFSI. Frankly I believe every oily-eyelid gal should own every incarnation of TFSI, and brown girls *especially* need this new Champagne shade.
I picked mine up from Ulta but it is available at TooFaced.com and should be available shortly at Sephora.com and freestanding stores. Look for a review of this product in conjunction with my review of Urban Decay’s Naked 2 Palette coming later this month.
Concealer is a beauty product I discovered was indispensable for ‘erasing’ my sleep-deprived caused dark circles under my eyes from too many all-nighters as an Engineering student in college. It’s also been a godsend for covering my acne scars and any evidence of late night partying. So as soon as I got word from The Muse that her highly-recommedned Boi-ing concealer from Benefit Cosmetics was being produced in darker shades, I was on it in picoseconds. Obviously other gals had gotten wind of this because I had to go to two Sephoras and three Ultas before I finally found one to take home with me.
Benefit Cosmetics has released three new shades of their Boi-ing Concealer in #3, #4 and #5. #3 is a medium neutral, #4 a medium-deep with yellow undertones and #5 a medium-dark with red undertones. Their pitch wording on the product reads as follows:
“You name it, boi-ing hides it! This industrial-strength concealer camouflages dark circles, shadows and discoloration for a seamless, natural-looking finish without creasing or fading. it’s the concealer that goes the distance.”
Weighing in at a hefty 3.0 grams (0.1 ounces), it comes in a black screw-top shallow plastic pot encased in a paper ‘peep’ box. The cream is slightly stiff to the initial swipe of a finger, but warms to your body heat and spreads nicely when using your finger. If you use a concealer brush the stiffness takes a bit longer to go away as the product warms to your skin. I noticed no product ‘drag’ as I do with my MAC Studio Finish concealer but it wasn’t as smooth going on as my NARS concealer. Unfortunately this product did crease on me (and perhaps because I have very oily skin) and I had to use a little bit of MUFE HD translucent powder to set it and discourage any further creasing. The pigmentation is very good and I was able to cover my light acne scars as well as I have been with my MAC Studio Finish concealer or my MUFE Full Coverage concealer. It is a shade lighter than my MAC Studio Finish concealer and about two shades lighter than my NARS concealer.
One of my biggest peeves with Benefit is that their concealers did not come in darker shades for beauties of color. It seems they’ve finally listened to this market. I am dissappointed that there wasn’t a deep color with yellow undertones and a darker espresso-like color for deeper undertones. #4 color is best suited for those NC42 and under while #5 for NW 45 and under. My second pet-peeve is this product contains mineral oil (paraffinum liquidium). While not the first ingredient, if you have sensitive skin and want to try this, I highly suggest purchasing from a retail establishment that takes returns like Sephora or Ulta. I have sensitive skin and haven’t had a reaction to this product so far after almost two weeks of use but I took a chance. Overall I am pleased with this concealer but it is only because Benefit made one that fits my skintone. Were I an NW45 – 47 this may work best as a color corrector rather than a concealer.
An interesting point to note is this product is made in France, not the US. I find French-made cosmetics to be of very high quality so I believe that has a lot to do with the very nice performance of this product. Benefit’s Boi-ing concealer retails for $19 USD and is available at Sephora, Ulta and other upscale retailers.