Makeup Intelligence: MAC Archie’s Girls for Spring 2013

Were you an Archie’s Comics fan back in the day like I was? If so, and you love makeup, check this out:

MAC Archie's Girls

MAC Archie’s Girls for Spring 2013: Does this bring back memories or what?!?

The collection is broken up into two parts.  There is Betty (Cooper), consisting of lighter shades and Veronica (Lodge) made up of the traditional in-your-face dramatic colors.  The collection is huge and as such will be this post but trust me, it’s worth it.  If you don’t want to read my blather but see some live-and-in-color pics, check out this post on Specktra.com.

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Nothing like a love triangle to remind you of Valentine’s Day like Veronica, Betty and Archie…

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Lipglasses. A Brown Girl MAC Addict’s Holy Grail 😉

Betty Collection: MAC Archie’s Girls

Betty

Lipsticks

  • Girl Next Door Vivid blue pink (Lustre)
  • Betty Bright Light vibrant peach (Satin)
  • Oh, Oh, Oh Sheer brown plum (Lustre) (Repromote)

BIGA Intel says: Lustres and satins are not my favorite finishes, especially in lighter colors such as these.  If you didn’t get your hands on Watch Me Simmer, Betty Bright would hold you over until a repromote happens.

Lipglass

  • Summer Sweetheart Light peach
  • Stay Sweet Light lavender pink
  • Kiss & Don’t Tell Bright coral

BIGA Intel says: Lipglasses are more often than not a good value.  If you have very pigmented lips, I would go straight for Kiss & Don’t Tell.  If you already own Strange Potion  from the MAC Disney Villains collection or  Tour de Fabulous from Stylepacked, this shade is probably a skip for you.

PearlGlide Eye Liner

  • Lord It Up Bronze with pearl
  • Black Swan Black with gold pearl

BIGA Intel says: Pearlglide eyeliners are very long-wearing, go on smooth and sparkly and look amazing.  Lord it Up would look best on light to medium skintones while Black Swan will compliment all skintones.

Pigment

  • Cheers My Dear Light lavender (Frost)
  • Lucky in Love Shimmering light blue green (Frost)

BIGA Intel says: Frankly I haven’t been too pleased with the quality of MAC pigments of late.  If you own any of the mineralize eye shadows close to light lavender or light blue green, best to go with those. Should you choose to go with these pigments, be sure to pick up some Mixing Medium from MACCosmetics.com. You’ll thank me later. 

Powder Blush

  • Cream Soda Light neutral coral (Satin)

BIGA Intel says: This should be a nice color for light to medium skintones.  I can’t see this one working on darker skintones very well. From the promo photos it looks a lot like NARS Gilda but performance could be another story.

Pearlmatte Face Powder

  • Flatter Me Golden peach base (Shell Pearl Beauty Powder) with coral hearts (Foolish Me Powder Blush)

BIGA Intel says: This is the first time I’ve seen this type of product.  A ‘beauty powder’ with blush ‘built in’.  Beauty powders such as these seem to work best as an all-over face color for light to medium skintones, and as a nice highlighter for dark skintones.  I will caution that if you have a dark skintone (NW/NC 45+) it’s best to try this in person to see if you like it.

Caramel Sundae Eyeshadow Palette

  • Caramel Sundae Mid-tone warm tan (Satin)
  • Cheryl Chic Light coral pink (Frost)
  • Dreammaker Pale frosty yellow (Frost)
  • Showstopper Dark, cool-toned brown (Matte) (Repromote)

BIGA Intel says: A nice collection of neutral shades.  If you have very oily lids and/or have a dark skin tone, be sure to prep your lids with a paint pot like Painterly or Soft Ochre before applying to eyelids.

Nail Lacquer

  • Pep Pep Pep Light peach nude
  • Comic Cute Bright coral

BIGA Intel says: I am not a huge fan of MAC’s nail polishes as I feel the price point is too high and the performance is no where near the level of Illamasqua or NARS. Check these lines for comparable dupes.

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Veronica Collection: MAC Archie’s Girls

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This is me when I have to yell at tech support who has no clue I’m an engineer…

Lipstick

  • Daddy’s Little Girl Mid-tone pink violet (Satin)
  • Ronnie Red Bright red (Matte)
  • Boyfriend Stealer Deep blackened plum (Cremesheen)

BIGA Intel says: While it’s in the satin finish I loathe, Daddy’s Little Girl seems to have such a high color saturation I still want it.  Ronnie Red looks to finally be the bright blue-red I’ve been waiting for MAC to produce in forever (Ruby Woo looks like crap on me as does MAC Red and Russian Red). Boyfriend Stealer should be a hit with brown girls because of the deep, dark color. I will say that if you do not own Yung Rapunxnel (amplified finish), make sure to haul that color first before Boyfriend Stealer.

Lipglass

  • Mall Madness Mid-tone pink violet
  • Strawberry Malt Bright red
  • Feelin’ So Good Deep blackened plum

BIGA Intel says: All of these look super-color-saturated the way true MAC addicts love their liplasses.  Strawberry Malt will look amazing on dark skin over Ronnie Red, and Feelin’ So Good looks a lot like Wrong Spell from MAC Venomous Villains.

PearlGlide Eye Liner

  • Petrol Blue Deep navy with pearl
  • Designer Purple Violet with pearl

BIGA Intel says: Forget Designer Purple and go straight for Petrol Blue. Why?  Not only does Petrol Blue look intensely amazing, it goes on smooth without issue.  Designer Purple isn’t as vibrant nor goes on as smooth as Petrol Blue.  Unless MAC has changed the formula recently, I don’t see myself getting another Designer Purple.  But Petrol Blue? You can never have too many.

Pigment

  • Black Poodle Blackened pink (Frost)
  • Magic Spells Blackened teal (Frost)

BIGA Intel says: From swatches I’ve seen, Black Poodle doesn’t look too impressive on and frankly it looks like MAC’s Beauty Marked (Velvet) eyeshadow. If you were lucky enough to get Moonlight Night pigment from MAC’s A Tartan Tale collection, you can skip Magic Spells. 

Powder Blush

  • Prom Princess Mid-tone violet pink (Satin)

BIGA Intel says: Its violet pink, Veronica is on it. Get it.

Pearlmatte Face Powder

  • Veronica’s Blush Silvery pink base (Play it Proper beauty powder) with deep pink hearts (Frankly Scarlet blush)

BIGA Intel says: I passed on Play it Proper beauty powder and as I already own ‘Too Chic’ and MAC’s Salsarose blush (MAC Pro), I’m passing on this.  

Spoiled Rich Eyeshadow Palette

  • Spoiled Rich Rich purple (Frost)
  • Ron Ron Run Deep navy (Satin)
  • Pin-Up Purple Mid-tone orchid (Frost)
  • Gravel Charcoal (Matte)

BIGA Intel says: The compact looks pretty, and the colors look nice, but check your stash first and check it twice.  These four colors look a lot like MAC Stars & Rockets, Atlantic Blue, Parfait Amour and some other dark charcoal grey color eyeshadow MAC has out. My first instinct is that these colors are dupeable but the palette is more about convenience than the colors included. 

Nail Lacquer

  • Past Curfew Deep berry
  • Double Trouble Deep navy

BIGA Intel says: See my notes under Betty.  Intel is still the same.

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Veronica items from the MAC Archie’s Girls Collection for Spring 2013. So cool, so Veronica…and so *me*.

My being a huge fan of the Archie comics, and of course totally on Team Veronica, I am very excited about this collection!  So much so that I found this bonus ‘cheat sheet’ you MUST print out and circle to note what you want. The collection is rumored to launch on MACCosmetics.com on January 30th but you probably want to start stalking the site before then.

Still here? It’s like you’re looking for that ‘bonus scene’ at the end of the movie credits.  Well, here ya go!

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MAC Archie’s Girls Accessories–gotta have that tote bag!!

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Preview: NARS Spring 2013

My goodies from NARS for Spring 2013 have arrived!

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Clockwise from top: NARS Sangria blush, Persia eye shadow, Cythere lip gloss pencil

As I hinted in my makeup intelligence post on NARS Spring 2013, I picked up the blush in Sangria, matte eye shadow in Persia and the lip gloss in Cythere.  I was most excited about getting Sangria but in the back of my mind I knew I had to get Persia.  And I am so glad that I did!

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Full face look feat. NARS Persia eye shadow (Mekong in crease, Kilimanjaro on browbown), Sangria blush (over Luster and Super Orgasm) and Cythere lip pencil over MUFE #10C lip pencil.

I’m currently testing these products but I can definitely say all three are worth purchasing, especially the Persia eye shadow.  If you are a medium to dark and darker brown girl, you need Persia in your life!  And even if you have strong red undertones as I do, blending this color with NARS Mekong (or any other cool toned dark shadow) will make it work. An added bonus about this color (which is insanely pigmented by the way) is that it makes that Maybelline Color Tattoo cream shadow in ‘Fierce and Tangy’ orange worth using again.  NARS Persia looks stunning on top of Maybelline’s Fierce and Tangy.

NARS Spring 2013 collection is available now at NARSCosmetics.com and coming to Sephora.com and NARS counters in upscale department stores in February.

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MAC PRO NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE!!!

MAC PRO now available online to all!

MAC PRO now available online to all!

Yes, this post is worthy of the caps in the headline.

Finally, MAC has made some of its most coveted (and hauled by yours truly) products from their PRO line available online at MACcosmetics.com. These are products and colors not regularly sold outside of MAC PRO stores unless repromoted in special collections or popping up unannounced on the website for sale. Before you run off to the site with credit card in hand, here are a few items I highly recommend purchasing.

Chromaline in BlackBlack

This is without a doubt the BLACKEST and most long-lasting gel eyeliner I have ever used.  It is a waterproof gel/cream and It lasts through sweat, humidity (yes I have Florida tested it) and applies smooth and precisely.  The pigmentation is second to none and no other black gel eyeliner I have tried has come close to how black this is.  I personally like using a light line of this along my lashline to use as a ‘guide’ to putting on false eyelashes.

Chromagraphic Pencil in Hi-Def Cyan and Process Magenta

These brightly-colored pencils are very soft and go on smoother than the eye and lip pencils in MAC’s regular retail range. Hi-Def Cyan is truly cyan as in #E0FFFF hex code and the glowing blue color from TRON which looks amazing paired up with a black & silver smokey eye.  I like to use the Process Magenta color as a lip liner to amp up pink and purple lipsticks.

Mixing Medium in Shine and Matte

Ever wonder how to get those gorgeous MAC pigments to stick on your lid? Have a fancy to fiddle with finishes? These mixing mediums are great to use to apply and punch up the intensity of MAC pigments, or to use with the eye shadows should you choose to.  If you are a pigment hoarder like I am, you need this product in BOTH formulations.

Pigment in Kelly Green and Electric Coral, Eye Shadow in Bottle Green and Blue Calm

MAC pigments serve as wonderful bases in order to amp up your eyeshadow color.  Kelly Green is a gorgeous green well-suited to cool skintones, and Electric Coral is just cool enough to make coral eyeshadows like Paradisco and Motif pop. I am very partial to MAC Veluxe Pearl finishes and bright blues so Blue Calm is a must while Bottle Green is a gorgeous dark matte green perfect for Fall/winter.

So those are all of my must haves.  Of course the MAC Pro collection has lots of other lipstick colors (Violetta is definitely worth checking out) and items so definitely visit the website to see what goodies tickle your fancy.

Preview: Tom Ford Fall 2012

I daresay Tom Ford has knocked it out of the park with his Fall 2012 beauty offerings!

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From left: Dominatrix nail lacquer, Emerald Lust eyeshadow quad, Aphrodesiac lipstick

Tom Ford Fall 2012 blesses us with a palette of strong jewel-toned colors which is a wonderful exception to the usual sage greens and dusky browns from most other makeup brands.  As I like wearing royal purple, kelly green and deep pinks in the fall, I chose the products I felt I would use most and go with what I wear. Dominatrix is a gorgeous jewel-toned dark purple with gold-bronze shimmer.  The Emerald Lust palette (which I think should have been titled Teal Lust) combines a seafoam green, royal blue and blue-green shimmer shade with a sparkly white shade.  And Aprodesiac,  a stunning fuchsia pink, is the perfect strong pink lipstick to go with those having cool skintones (much nicer than Flamingo).

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Emerald Lust eye shadow palette by Tom Ford for Fall 2012

Tom Ford is a straight-up luxury product.  The nail polishes flow beautifully, the eye shadows are nicely pigmented and made in Italy (where the best powders are made) and the lipsticks are so insanely pigmented and wear so well it is my favorite ‘brown girl friendly’ go-to lipstick.

Tom Ford Fall 2012 collection is available now at NeimanMarcus.com, Saks.com and their freestanding stores.

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Dominatrix nail lacquer by Tom Ford for Fall 2012

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Aprodesiac lipstick by Tom Ford for Fall 2012

Preview: Chanel Fall 2012

Ah fall. The air gets cooler, the leaves give a final grand show of color before falling, and somehow before all that the cosmetic collections for the season begin to come out. Chanel presents Les Essentiels de Chanel for Fall/Winter 2012–a cool-toned collection to sweep you front the last gasps of summer into the first few snowflakes of winter.

Fall 2012 from Chanel has arrived!

Lumière d’Artifices Beiges – Limited Edition
One of the things I love about highlighters made by luxury brands is the ornate decoration stamped into the product. The highlighter offered by Chanel for Fall 2012 is no exception. Described as “two shades of beige, infused with fine golden sparkles to highlight and define a radiant complexion that looks natural in the sun or glowing in evening lighting” this highlighter is imprinted with pretty ‘sequin’ mini-circles and alternating stripes of beige and light peach. If you are darker than olive-tone I would highly suggest swatching this in person before making a buying decision. I did get to see this in person and while it did look pretty on my dark skin it didn’t make me want to buy it right then and there.

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Chanel Fall 2012 Display at Bloomingdales. Don’t know what was up with the missing peach eyeshadow.

Joues Contraste in Rose Initiale
As a blush addict I love these for the buildability of color and the Rouge Joues Contraste blushes from Chanel are no exception. Going by the press photo the offering for Fall looks to be a bit fair for dark skintones (you can always use a highlighter underneath to negate this) but as Chanel promotes this as a shade complimentary to all skin tones, and after checking it out in person it’s mostly true. On my red skintone it seemed a bit chalky at first swatch but sheered out nice. Again, it didn’t scream ‘buy me’ like Malice did but it is a pretty universal pink. Definitely check this one out in person to swatch if you can.

Les 4 Ombres in Premier Regard
I’ve always admired how beautiful Chanel eye shadow quads are and this one is no exception. Seemingly wearable by all skintones, this quad is a mix of neutral tones of intense black (for smoke and lining), beige, tender pink and slightly scintillating taupe grey. You can definitely make a few gorgeous smokey eye looks with this palette. I have always found the quads to more of a value for your luxury beauty dollar than the singles, especially with the included mirror.

Ombre Essentielle (single eyeshadows)
There are five (5) eye shadow singles in the Fall 2012 collection. 1) Complice (natural soft peach) 2) Eclaire (sheer golden) 3) Furtif (pale romantic grey) 4) Infini (eye-opening silver) 5) Noir (intense, matte black). They look nice and are pigmented well but the only one that stood out to me when swatching in person was Furtif. Furtif is described as a pale romantic grey but there are some shimmers in it that I think would look amazing to enhance a black smokey romantic eye.

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Eyeshadow in ‘Furtif’ by Chanel (Fall 2012) over Make Up For Ever #2 Aqua Cream. You can get the same look wearing this shadow over Maybelline’s Color Tatoo cream shadow in ‘Audacious Asphalt’

Stylo Yeux Waterproof (Eye liner pencils)
Two color shades are offered. One called Silver Light (limited edition) and another called Noir Intense (rich, carbon black). I am partial to the Silver Light for adding a pop of shimmer to the tearduct area and under the browbone and I think it would look amazing layered on top of Noir Intense. Silver Light is a limited-edition color while Noir Intense is permanent.

Rouge Coco and Rouge Coco Shine in Caractère
The iconic Rouge Coco lipstick has several offerings for Fall/Winter 2012. Rouge Coco in Caractere is a brown with a dash of violet plum. Two Rouge Coco Shines in Chic (transparent beige with fine golden sparkles) and Parfait (tender pink with a touch of gold). Where Rouge Coco lipsticks are more opaque, Rouge Coco Shine lipsticks appear to give a hint of color on the lips that isn’t a gloss and isn’t quite a lipstick.

Le Crayon Lèvres in Amarante
Chanel’s lip pencils aren’t something I’ve tried before but the color description pulled me in as I’m such a sucker for plum lips in the fall. But when I saw this in person and it had a little brush attached at the end, I was sold! The pencil is soft, very pigmented and blends nicely with the attached slanted brush. This is a new offering from Chanel.

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Amarante lip liner by Chanel — Fall 2012

Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss and Levres Scintillantes
Chanel brings two limited edition colors of it’s Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss or Fall 2012. Caprice, a delicate pink with a hint of grey and Troublant, a bold violet-plum brown. It is an understatement to say how much I love these. Intensely pigmented with enough shine to stand out but not so much your lips don’t look shellacked, these glosses are elegantly packed in a slim black packages with a doe foot applicator. I made it a point to pick up Troublant due to its unique coloring which I feel will look amazing with a sage green smokey eye. Caprice is a pretty pink but if you are dark skinned, be sure to layer and/or outline your lips with a light brown pencil before applying this color so it isn’t washed out by your skintone.

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Chanel’s Rouge Allure lip gloss in Troublant over Amarante lip liner. Both items are for Fall 2012

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Eyeshadow in ‘Furtif’ by Chanel (Fall 2012) over Make Up For Ever #2 Aqua Cream. Lips in Chanel’s Troublant over Amarante lip pencil. Tom Ford’s Savage blush on cheeks

Also offered is a Levres Scintillantes (AKA Glossimer) in Sweet Beige. This is described as a discrete beige with a hint of sparkle. Glossimers usually have less pigment than the Rouge Allure lipglosses and this one would be great for giving a slight color lift to the lips. Definitely consider layering this over the new lip pencil Chanel is bringing out with this collection.

Le Vernis Nail Lacquer
Chanel seasonal nail polish launches are an event unto themselves. Last year’s drew from the natural beauty of gemstones such as peridot, while this year’s collection seems more suited to the chic shades of parisian fall. As with last year there are three shades:

Frenzy – lilac grey;
Suspicious – dazzling fuchsia;
Vertigo – an almost black lacquer that contains a heart of red pearly particles that reveal themselves according to the light.

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Chanel Nail Vernis in Furtif — Gorgeous nail shade for Fall 2012

Frenzy looks to be the most dupeable of the three. At first glance it appears to be very similiar to Rescue Beauty Lounge’s Jane and Essie’s Sand Tropez. Suspicious also looks dupeable as there are plenty of bright fuchsia polishes but it is still very alluring. Vertigo looks to be the star out of all three. The finish sounds quite different than what I’m used to seeing Chanel put out and it could wind up being this Fall’s ‘Peridot’ people were clamoring for.

Final Thoughts
Chanel is the classic beauty line. Not very risky in terms of color but always on trend and always classy. Where the Summer 2012 line was very warm and not to my liking, the cool tones of Fall 2012 have me excited about several products. For sure I am picking up the lip pencil in Armante, lip gloss in Troublant. If there is room left in the beauty budget, Vertigo is definitely next on the list.

Les Essentiels de Chanel was scheduled to be available at most upscale retailers begining in August of 2012 but I spotted it at Bloomingdales and online at Chanel.com, Nordstrom.com and NeimanMarcus.com. Of course always feel free to call your favorite Chanel counter to inquire if the collection is available for purchase.

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Love the lipgloss but the eye shadow…not so much. Goes on smooth but easily dupeable with MAC’s Silver Ring Veluxe Pearl eyeshadow or if you have it, Hocus Pocus from MAC’s Bloggers Obsessions collection.

Guerlain by Emilio Pucci Capri Eye Shadow Quad: The Rundown

Finally! I have gotten around to reviewing the Guerlain by Emilio Pucci Terra Azzura Capri eye shadow quad from the delightful Summer 2012 collection. I’ve had a few weeks to road test this product and see how versatile it is and how the shadow formula behaves.

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Guerlain by Emilio Pucci Eye Shadow Quad in Capri–French Riviera memories!

The Product Details

There are four (4) colors in this quad chosen to replicate a feeling of being in the French Riviera at summertime are as follow:

  • A shimmering ecru
  • A smokey brown
  • A satin pink
  • A semi-frosty peach coral

At first glance if you think you’ve seen a quad like this you probably have. MAC’s Call Me Bubbles quad that came out for Spring 2012 for Shop MAC/Cook MAC is almost identical at first glance. But unlike with MAC’s quad, I found all four colors in the Guerlain palette to be buttery smooth with amazing color payoff. More often than not I got too much product on the application with less effort than with my MAC shadows. For darker-skinned beauties NC/NW40+, these colors will definitely work for you however I would suggest using either a white eyeshadow on the lid, or a light color eyeshadow pencil such as Make Up For Ever’s Shadow Pencil in Pearly Peach (26E) or Urban Decay’s 24/7 Shadow Pencil in Sin.

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Guerlain’s new eye shadow palette by Emilio Pucci–Great for everyday!

The palette seems like it is all warm colors but there is enough neutrality for it to look nice on all skintones. Even with my screaming red undertones all of colors complimented me very well and I found myself reaching for this palette more often than not. Out of all of the colors, the cool dusty brown and peachy orange are my favorites for a surprisingly wearable summer smokey eye. The pink color is nice but as I have the Les Roses palette and this one is more matte, I use to enhance the peachy orange shade moreso than on its own. The beige color is fabulous as a highlighter or a light wash of shimmery ercu across the lids.

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Guerlain by Emilio Pucci swatches from bottom: Kohl Kajal, Eye shadow palette (no flash/HDR)

I would highly suggest using the included custom applicator to apply the shadow. My MAC brushes didn’t seem to play very well with this. And if you have oily eyelids as I do, definitely use an eyeshadow primer like Too Faced Shadow Insurance and a cream shadow as a base such as MAC’s Quite Natural or Painterly paint pots, or Maybelline’s Color Tattoo 24hr cream shadow in Tough as Taupe or Pomegranate Punk. Total weight by volume of all four shadows is .24 oz which is a very healthy amount compared to MAC’s usual .17 oz total weight for a quad.

Final Recommendation

While the price point is quite high ($59), the different finish of the case and quality of the eyeshadows (and big mirror in it) more than qualify the price. For women of color, the shadows do not turn ‘ashy’ but to make them pop I would suggest using a cream shadow underneath either a few shades lighter than your coloring or use a white shadow pencil. All colors are easily blendable and while this pallete is showcased for Summer, it is a lovely one to have year-round for olive to dark-skinned beauties.

The Guerlain by Emillio Pucci Capri eye shadow palette is a limited edition item and is available at Nordstrom, Sephora.com and NeimanMarcus.com

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Back of Capri eyeshadow palette by Guerlain by Emilio Pucci

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The velvet sleeve for the eye shadow palette–a true identifier of luxury cosmetics

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Guerlain by Emilio Pucci Eye shadow quad – Flash

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Guerlain by Emilio Pucci swatches from bottom: Kohl Kajal, Eye shadow palette (flash)

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Preview: NARS Summer 2012 Collection

Bet you all thought I forgot about the Summer 2012 offerings from NARS, right?  Nope, I’ve just been slow about it.

NARS Summer 2012 Collection

And rolling right along with the Summer preview posts we continue on with the pieces I picked up from NARS’ Summer 2012 collection!

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My favorite pieces from the NARS Summer 2012 collection

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Trouville is a gorgeous seashell pink--stunning!

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A hurried full-faced look featuring NARS Summer 2012 collection (Desire blush and Hungry Heart highlighter on cheeks)