NARS High Society Eye Shadow Trio: The Rundown

Let’s be honest. After getting burned by the epic fail that was NARS Christmas 2012 eye shadow trio Arabian Nights, I wasn’t going to get this.  But I’m a sucker for purples and the matte green mixed in was so different for fall I had to give it a try.

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High Society eye shadow trio from NARS Fall 2012 collection

NARS eye shadow trip offering for Fall 2012 comes in a sleek, black mirrored compact with three (3) separate eye shadow colors weighing in at 0.17oz of product.  The three colors is a shimmery lavender shade, a matte green just a shade lighter than hunter green, and an amethyst shade.

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Swatches of NARS High Society eye shadow trio (flash)

The lavender shimmer is nice, pigmented well enough but I find it lacks the iridescence of Iceland (purple side) and gold shimmer of Strada.  While I like it as a highlighter shade, NARS makes colors in their core line that do it better.  The matte green is definitely not my favorite but I also am not very fond of NARS matte colors in general. Fuji has a subtle sheen while green side of Blade Runner has more of a frost.  This matte shade serves well to darken and provide interesting contrast between the amethyst and lavender shades but not good for much else. The amethyst shimmer (my favorite color of the bunch), is pigmented nicely and I love this to smoke out my eye along w/ the lavender shimmer shade. It is slightly darker than Knight Rider.

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NARS Fall 2012 look with High Society on eyes, Outlaw on cheeks and Rouge Tribal on lips

When worn over Too Faced Shadow Insurance in Candelight, I got at least 6 hours worth of wear but the color intensity wore off a bit. I couldn’t see the individual colors themselves but they did blend together for an interesting yet subtle look. As I prefer more intensity, I used Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Cream in #16 and only used the amethyst and lavender shades. This definitely helped to amp up the color and keep it a bit more vibrant and true to pan. The matte shade I found disappeared too quickly for my liking. Had a hard time blending it and even when worn on the lid alone it just looked ‘blah’ on me. Didn’t move me like my beloved Fuji, Blade Runner or Night Flight.

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NARS High Society Eye Shadow Trio–remixed!

While I do like two out of the three shadows in this palette, I don’t believe this is worth picking up if you are still working on your NARS eye shadow collection. I do believe you are better off picking up Strada and Fuji eye shadow singles and layering it over a cream base such as MUFE # (light purple) or Urban Decay’s Morphine shadow pencil. If you have very oily eyelids like me a an eye shadow base such as TFSI or NARS is required.

NARS High Society Eye shadow trio retails for $45 USD and is now available for purchase at NARSCosmetics.com and in Sephora stores and NARS counters at Neiman Marcus and Lord and Taylor.

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Preview: NARS Fall 2012

For those new to my blog, I have an almost obsessive-compulsion to do a happy dance when NARS releases a new collection.  For those who have been reading my blog for quite some time, you’re probably wondering what’s taken me so danged long to post about the NARS Fall 2012 collection.  For a quick rundown of all the items, please see my article up on TheStyleAndBeautyDoctor.com (yep, I’m contributing over there as well).

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Clockwise from top: NARS Rouge Tribal Larger Than Life lipgloss, Outlaw blush, High Society Eye Shadow Trio

I purchased the items I was most interested in once when were available after me stalking appearing on the site.  Rouge Tribal Larger Than Life Lipgloss, High Society eye shadow trip and Outlaw blush were purchased by me and are a most welcome addition to my Fall makeup wardrobe.

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NARS Fall 2012 Swatches from bottom: Outlaw Blush, Rouge Tribal, High Society Eye Shadow Trio (w/ flash)

Rouge Tribal Larger Than Life Lipgloss

I was quite disappointed that for Fall 2012 Francois Nars did not include one of the lovely matte lip pencils I’ve become addicted to.  However, the color of this lipgloss is so gorgeous, so flattering to deep skin tones that I couldn’t help but fall in love with Rouge Tribal. With a vampy burgundy tone with metallic shimmer, it shows up very easily on the lips though there will be some settling in lip lines.  Personally I can’t wait to wear this lipgloss with Mekong and Night Star eye shadow singles.

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NARS Rouge Tribal Larger Than Life Lipgloss for Fall 2012

High Society Eye Shadow Trio

Color me so pleased at this cool-toned trio of shades.  NARS’ High Society eye shadow trio consists of three shades: a light frosty lavender, a matte midtone green (a bit lighter than NARS Fuji eye shadow single) and a deep  violet purple shimmer shade. I picked up this trio mainly because as I own the Marie Galante eye shadow duo from the NARS Spring 2012 collection, the two should go together quite well.

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NARS High Society Eye Shadow Trio for Fall 2012

Outlaw Blush

Color me devastated when I tried to find this color last fall and found out it had been discontinued!  Thankfully NARS had pity on blush addicts like me and re-released this gorgeous rose gold shade.  It is lighter than Taos with more of a cool undertone.  Like with all NARS blushes the translucent pigments made the color easily buildable on dark skin and does not turn ashy.

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NARS Outlaw Blush has returned for Fall 2012!

I plan to start testing these items for wear beginning this week and should have a review up within the next few weeks or so.  What I can tell you is that while the eye shadow trio is nice, for me the stars of this release are the Rouge Tribal lipgloss and the Outlaw blush. Budget still crunched? NARS blushes are THE thing to have and considering they also make great eye shadow bases, go for it.

The Fall 2012 collection is now available at NARSCosmetics.com and should be appearing on Sephora.com, Nordstrom.com within the next few weeks.

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NARS Fall 2012 — Are you feeling it?

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Martinique: The Rundown

I am so in love with this product I went back for the lighter (and better match to my Winter/Spring skin) shade in Martinique!

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NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Martinique

Martinique (which is an island in the Caribbean and yes I was geeky enough to look it up) is described by NARS as a medium-dark with red undertones.  If you wear NARS Sheer Matte/Glow in Cadiz or New Guinea, or NW40 – NW45 in MAC foundations or Make Up For Ever Velvet Mat+ in 70 – 75, this shade is a good color match.

If you’ve read through my review of NARS Tinted Moisturizer in the Polynesia shade, you know how impressed I am with this product. While I loved Polynesia, it really is too dark for my Winter skin (though it did give me a gorgeous summer bronzed look!). After a trip to my local Sephora where they’d just gotten these in stock, one of the sales associates picked out Martinique for me straight away. I took a sample home and was so impressed how well this shade matched my skin that I bought the full size.

For reference, Seychelles was too yellow in tone though the shade did match and Malaga was also very yellow and obviously too light for me. Cuba was also too light. Also while these colors were too light, the yellow tones were more apparent and the color didn’t look ‘ashy’ on me–just an undertone mismatch.

So let’s get to some picspam of NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Martinique!

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Back of the container with sunscreen active ingredients and usual cosmetics warnings

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NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Martinique, swatched on NW43 skin (no flash/HDR)

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Martinique swatched on NW43 skin w/flash

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Martinique swatched w/o flash (overhead light)

By now you’re probably wondering how Martinique compares to Polynesia and of course, I’ve got you covered there.  Polynesia is more of a dark chocolate as compared to the milk chocolate color of Martinique.  The picspam speaks for itself.

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Side by side comparison of NARS Pure Radiant in Martinique & Polynesia

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Swatches of NARS tinted moisturizer on NW43 skin from left: Martinique, Polynesia (w/ flash)

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I mixed Martinique with Polynesia and got the PERFECT shade!

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From left: Make Up For Ever Velvet Mat+ in #75, NARS Pure Radiant in Martinique, NARS Sheer Matte in New Guinea

I’ve had Polynesia for about a month and Martinique for about two weeks and my impression of this product has only gotten better. I’ve noticed (and other people have too) how my skin is improving with the consistent use of this product. A few acne scars that I had been covering up with concealer have begun to fade noticeably and I’ve got this nice glow going on!  Another added benefit is this product has no artificial fragrance and neither is the natural fragrance overpowering.

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer is now available at NARSCosmetics.com, Sephora.com and Sephora stores, and of course at Nordstrom.com and Nordstrom stores.

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NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Martinique - Swatches & Ingredient information

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NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizers in Martinique & Polynesia

Urban Decay 24/7 Shadow Pencil Stash: The Rundown

I’ve never been a fan of Urban Decay’s 24/7 eye liner pencils.  There, I said it.  So it’s very wierd that I have become hopelessly addicted to their 24/7 eye shadow pencils.  I had always swatched them in-store and thought they were appeared in Sephora, I snapped it up using my 20% VIB discount.

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Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Shadow Pencil Stash. I can't lie--the bright blue is what made me buy it.

The set consists of five (5) travel-sized versions of the full sized 24/7 shadow pencils. I would say they are about 2/3rds the size of the full-sized ones. Packaged in a cardboard compartmentalized box in a plastic sleeve, the set consist of three (3) neutral shades and two (2) bright shades. As these are pencils and not classified as a liquid, cream or gel, this flat box it comes in is very handy to toss into your carry-on.  Take that, TSA!

The Neutrals

The darkest neutral shade in the set, Rehab is a semi-matte taupe color.  Very nice to use as an eyeliner or to ‘smoke out’ the edges of a neutral smokey eye.  Juju is the second-darkest shade in this set and is a set-exclusive shade.  It is a frosty taupe that looks very nice on the lid alone, blended with Rehab for a neutral smokey eye or lined with Clash for an intense pop of color. Sin has to be my favorite neutral of this whole bunch. It is a bright, shimmery beige color that is the most perfect thing to highlight the inner corners and browbone of your eyes. The color is shimmery as compared to the glittery annoyance that is Midnight Cowboy, and you can buff it out with either UD’s Good Karma brush or another synthetic fiber blending brush (like e.l.f’s contouring blush from the Studio line) to blend out and tone down the shimmer to your liking.

The Brights

Let’s start with the obvious star of the bunch, Clash.  Clash is a bright turquoise blue that reminds me of those pictures you see in travel magazines of the Caribbean Sea.  It is a very shimmery color and while it packs a punch, if you use a light hand or a blending brush, it can provide a lovely cool wash of color to your eye look.  If you have brown eyes like I do, blues and greens are your BFFs.  Not daring to compete with brightness but instead with an intense dark sparkle, Delinquent is not for the faint of heart.  You can use it for an intense smoky eye look, or a not-quite-black eyeliner.

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From top: Clash, Sin, Juju, Rehab, Delinquent (w/ flash)

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Thick and thin swatches from top: Clash, Juju, Sin, Rehab, Delinquent (w/ flash)

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Without flash from top: Clash, Juju, Sin, Rehab, Delinquent

Color Hack

For comparison I’ve done swatches against some of the 12 hr waterproof eye shadow pencils Sephora has come out with. While the neutral shades appear to look very similar to the 24/7 shadow pencils and cover very well, they just  aren’t as vibrant. UrbanDecay also bests the turquoise and violet Sephora pencils in vibrancy and opacity. Considering Urban Decay’s shadow pencils retail for $19 and Sephora’s retails for $12, if budget is an issue and you couldn’t get your hands on this set you can pull off a good color hack with Sephora eye shadow pencils.

As compared to the Sephora neutral shades, Urban Decay’s 24/7 shadow pencils go on smoother and offer more opaque coverage in fewer passes than the Sephora ones do. My only gripe is that this set doesn’t include the crazy gorgeous green Clinic or the reminiscent of the 80’s Morphine. If I had my druthers I would have gotten rid of Juju (it’s too close to Rehab in my opinion).

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From top: UD Sin, Sephora Beige, UD Juju, Sephora Brown (w/ flash)

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From top: Sephora Turquoise, UD Clash, Sephora Violet, UD Delinquent (no flash)

Brown Girl Notes

Another quality I look for is opacity when it comes to shadow pencils. It is easy for a shadow to cover fair to medium skin. It isn’t as easy when it comes to dark skin because the pigmentation needs to be heavier and that usually translates into a higher price. All five (5) of the 24/7 shadow pencils built up opacity very quickly with very few passes. Even when blended out the color still retains its vibrancy on my lids.

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Smokey look w/ UD's 24/7 shadow pencils in Sin (inner lid & highlight), Juju (whole lid) and Rehab (blended in outer lid). Lipstick is Guerlain Rouge Automatique in Rose Bengale

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Eyes lined with UD 24/7 shadow pencil in Clash. Lipstick is Chanel Rouge Allure Satin in 'Enviree' w/ Chanel Bagatelle glossimer (Spring 2012)

End-of-Line Recommendation

While the set is definitely a better deal than the single pencils ($7 compared to $12.56 for 2/3rds of the full sized price), the real value comes from the neutral shaded ones (Juju, Rehab, Clinic). While I believe these colors look best on cooler-toned skins, they are gorgeous enough to enhance all skin tones. Toss in the pretty violet purple and turquoise pencils and you have a set that is very versatile and ready to go jet-setting when you are. As of this writing, these sets are available at UrbanDecay.com, Sephora.com and Beauty.com.

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Eyes 'smoked' with UD 24/7 shadow pencil in Rehab, lined with Delinquent. Lips in Chanel Rouge Allure Satin in Famous & Rouge Allure Laqcque in Triomphal (Christmas 2011)