Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Meet & Greet with Mr NARS and an awesome new liquid blush :-)

I recently had an opportunity to attend a book signing event by the renowned makeup artist and photographer Francois Nars. He is the Founder & Creative Director of NARS Cosmetics and I am sure we all either know about the brand and/or have used one or few products from them. He recently launched his self-titled book celebrating his work over the decades. I still have not have the chance to read the book though!

Francois Nars founded NARS Cosmetics in 1994. I am very well aware of the brand (thanks to YouTube and Instagram) but apart from his name, I know very little about Mr. Nars. I still decided to purchase the book and participate in the event - it was a personal project. One of my gentle resolution for this year is to do things that I have not done before; things that may be outside my comfort zone. I am not an easy-going, overly extrovert person and the idea of going to an event to meet a celebrity definitely falls in my uncomfortable zone!

I was a little apprehensive about the whole event but I had such a nice experience! Please keep in mind that I am not very much educated about his work and I have tried just a handful of NARS Product, so I was definitely not fangirling! But from the moment he arrived at the event he was smiling, and taking his time to start small talk! He was complimenting all his fans with genuine intention. I have a lower voice, so I immediately got concerned thinking that he would not be able to hear me :-) but he instantly made me feel comfortable! My entire conversion with him lasted only 2 or 3 minutes but he managed to compliment me and ask me if I want a photograph. He was not even rushing through the process. I think humility is what makes a successful person so loveable and admirable!

I am glad I forced myself to act outside my comfort zone.  As a beauty blogger by hobby and as a avid make up lover, I think my first “meet and greet” went on perfectly fine, thanks to Mr. Nars!

Of course, that `feel-good` feeling from the event later that night encouraged me to check out some of the new stuff from the brand! I wanted to get their Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in famous “Mysterious Red” as well but there was a glitch in the system and I could not add it to my cart. I only managed to order their new Liquid Blush in “Dolce Vita”.

I know that you are not interested in my personal jibber jabber! But I have noticed that as I age more, I have harder time taking decision; particularly while taking decisions about very unimportant stuffs! For example – I had the hardest time determining which shade to pick – Dolce vita or Torrid? Is Torrid too light or is Dolce Vita too dark? Do I already have shades like these? Which one to pick? Should I pick both? NOT REALLY, coz I don’t have money for both! Ugh!

After much deliberation, I finally settled on Dolce Vita. There are four different shades that they are launching for summer 2017 – Orgasm, Torrid, Luster and Dolce Vita. All these shades are available in their cult favorite powder blush formula. Check these shades here (photo by @youngwildandpolished. They also released their famous orgasm shade in lipstick formula. 

Price and Availability: This liquid blush will cost you $30 for 0.5 oz. of product. You can find these on Sephora online and in stores, Nars boutiques, Nordstrom, Barneys and Saks Fifth Avenue. It has already launched in some of these stores but it will launch very soon in all of them and online.

PackagingNars always does a great job in terms of packaging. I know that the black packaging attracts a lot of stain and dirt, but I love the look of their products. And it is a cost I am willing to pay. This blush come in a beautiful glass jar that has a pump. The pump is actually very easy to control. I find that a full pump is somewhat more than what I need to apply on both my cheeks. If I am careful and use only a ¾ of a pump, it is the perfect amount! It is a gorgeous bottle and is not very bulky. I do have a concern about the packaging; sometimes when I try to pull off the lid, somehow it unscrews the pump inside and there is a significant concern about getting the liquid product getting spilled. It did happen to me once and I spilled about 3-4 drops But I am now more careful while opening it.

Shade: Dolce Vita is a beautiful dusty rose shade. It is described as a matte with natural finish. I do however see a tiny little bit of sheen in it. It definitely a flattering shade on me, it also works on my mom. She is 2-3 shades darker than me but it shows up beautifully on her as well. Unfortunately, I don’t have its powder counterpart so I am not able to show you comparison. I will like to refer you to MLBB blog; she has a detailed post on this.

Quality & Formula: In general, I do enjoy cream formula especially during the weekdays; cream products are quick and versatile for me. This blush has great pigmentation but it is quite buildable. I squirt 3/4th of pump on my palm and apply a few drops with my finger tips and blend it. Often, when I use a cream/liquid blush I don’t feel the need to use a brush to blend the product. But with this one, I feel that I get a better and more seamless application when I further blend this blush with a brush! When I was watching Young Wild and Polished videos on these, she was highly suggesting that they work over powder unlike other cream/liquid blush formulas! I did try it over powder and yes, it does not lift the powder underneath. For some of you who uses powder bases, this might be a great advantage. Overall, I am really happy with the pigmentation, blend-ability and the ease of application!    
By the way, the formula reminds me of the Aqua Glow Watercolor Blush formula from Stila (I have reviewed "Water Lily" here). Nars one is a bit light-weight on the cheeks while Stila blush gets a bit greasy by the end of the day.

WeartimeLet’s talk about the staying power. In short, I am utterly impressed! I have been wearing it non-stop since I got it. I have worn it over bare, just moisturized skin. I have worn it over my beloved Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation, and over powder foundation. I often use Benefit Porefessional on my cheeks, but I do have to agree that the wear time is incredible. Typically, over bare skin, it kind of fades when I get home after 8-9 hrs. long work day. But over foundation, it lasts for the entire time till I wash off my face at the end of the day. 

Look at the picture above. I applied my makeup around 9 in the morning and went off to St. Louis with my parents for a quick getaway. It was a relatively warm day, and we were walking, driving the entire time. By the time we wrapped up our Getaway Arch visit and headed back to the parking lot, it was raining profusely. We had to walk in the rains for at least 15 mins. Then drove 2 hrs. back to our hotel in Springfield. I was amazed to see that the blush was still proudly hanging on my cheeks even after that heavy rain and daylong torture. In fact, I have worn it many times when going out for day long trips and it has performed really well every time.

Another important thing, you have to shake it well before using it. Otherwise, as you can see in the picture, the blush tends to condensate a bit. 

This was on a separate day, but my foundation got a bit darker :-( just wanted to sow you all my failure :-)
If you can’t already tell, I am really enjoying this product. It is an easy and work-horse type of a formula. I just need to practice a little bit of patience when opening the cap and use the pump. This will definitely be in my June Favorites :-)


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Monthly Favorites ::: May 2017

I have some exciting and relatively new products for this month`s favorite. This is rare for me; typically, I always end up using or loving older products from my collection with just one or two new staff. I am well aware that this is almost mid-June but my parents are here with me and I am trying to spend as much time as I can with them, obviously blogging has taken a backseat. No regret though!

Diorskin Nude Air Luminizer in 001 and 003: First- it is luxury product and for me it was an indulgent purchase! But the best thing about this is that I love the formula! I absolutely adore the shades as well, I love how easy it is to layer and blend! Love the wet glossy look it gives me and I enjoy how long it stays on me. Overall a very well performing luxury product that makes me feel happy.

Marc Jacobs Omega Coconut Bronzer in TanTastic: Oh, another luxury purchase! I have shared here my exhaustive story on how I ended up buying this. You can also see detailed review and swatches! I have said before, I can make the shade work but it is not necessarily the best on my skin tone. I am really loving the formula; the smell is unnecessary but a nice-feel good detail! The powder is very soft, easy to pick up and apply. It blends beautifully. It is quite buildable which is a very good quality in a bronzer. And, I absolutely adore the white packaging.

Colourpop Pressed Shadows in Come and Get it & High Strung: I rarely use Colourpop Super Shock shadows, But I do really LOVE them. When they come out with pressed eyeshadows I did not pay attention! These past few weeks, they were running a promotion of 3 eyeshadows @ 10$ and I picked up three shades. I got High Strung, Come and Get It & Sandbar. 
I wanted to get colors that are satin or shimmer but is appropriate and fast for a no- fuss `wear to work` look. These two shades fit the bill perfectly and I actually find them to be interesting. I knew for sure that these will be good but I did not expect to fall in love with them. I have used both shades with or without primer and both times they perform beautifully. I can just use my fingertips to apply this on the lid and if I don’t have time I can skip using a crease shade. They still remain wearable. I actually have been wearing just `Come and Get It` on the lid alone with a lot of mascara. It is an intense duo chrome of peach and gold. I prefer this  just a little bit more than `High Strung`.

Lakme 9 to 5 Matte Lipstick: Lakme is a nostalgic brand for me. I keep buying products from them because it reminds me of my home ! I don't  necessarily see myself loving their product enough to put in a favorite.  But this month, I am really enjoying this this matte lipstick. It’s a great everyday lipstick shade on me.

Makeup Geek Cosmetics (MUG) Eyeshadows in Tuscan Sun and Crème Brule: MUG was unbelievably reigning the single-pan sector for last 3 or 4  years. But with the new Colourpop pressed shadows having very similar (or comparable) quality at slightly affordable prices coupled with free shipping above 35$ will surely create fierce competition for MUG. But that’s beside the point! Today I am just trying to share my love for this beautiful warm soft coral called Tuscan Sun.  It is so pigmented and blends like a dream without much effort. Its a versatile shade too! I wear it on the crease with shades like `Come & Get It` or `High Strung`, I can also pair it with cooler shades like navy blue or pewter to bring a little bit of warmth on my eyes. I have also worn it all over the lid and it looks very beautiful and happy. Crème Brulee appeared in last year`s favourite. I think this the most used MUG shadow for me. It is almost the same as my skin tone. So I love to use it on my crease, especially if I go  too heavy with my colorful crease shades. It acts like an eraser and can make the blending much smoother. I love this shade, & I can see hitting pan this year. Check detailed review here.

Tell me more about your favorites this month or rather last month :-)


Friday, June 2, 2017

Colourpop Haul :-)

This May, Colourpop Cosmetics turned 3. In celebration of their birthday, they were/are offering some killer deals throughout the month of May (check more here).  I of course, placed 2 orders -for the first haul, I spent just 41$ and got a few free items as well. The second haul cost me 32$! It was without doubt my best purchases from Colourpop in terms of value. But, of course it came with a little bit of guilt. I did not really need all of these, I just wanted was some blue shades for a series I am planning, but these damn deals are just impossible to pass on. I gave in!

Now, I am going to be a productive blogger and share my haul with you guys! If you regularly visit my blog you may notice that I do hardly post hauls, I mainly focus on intensive reviews accompanied with makeup looks I created. I love to blog with detailed swatches and looks! But today I am here just for the haul. I will eventually have detailed reviews but I think, right now the most important thing was to get the swatches posted. Colourpop shadows cost $5 for a pop that contains 0.074 oz. product. I have been a bigtime fan of their super shock shadows (I love the shimmery ones tiny bit more but I can work with the matte ones as well). Also, they recently launched an array of pressed powder shadows. The deal they were running where $10 for 3 eyeshadows so I picked a total of 10 Super Shock shadows and 5 from  the new pressed shadows. Let’s discuss the ones that are relatively new!

Come and get it (Pressed shadow): I have fallen in love with this shade. Its so creamy, so easy to work with and stays put with or without primer. The shade is just absolutely gorgeous! It’s a beautiful coral shade with a gorgeous gold duo-chrome. This is becoming a fast favorite. 
High Strung (Pressed shadow): Another creamy shimmery shade with excellent quality. It looks kind of similar to Come and get it, but it is much more bronzy. 
Sandbar (Pressed shadow): I am planning on a “colorful blog” post and I noticed I don’t have a whole lot of pink in my collection. I have not used it yet. It is beautiful pink shade. But these two pink shade has already stained my hand when I was swatching it.
Hot Totty: Talking about pink, I had to pick it up! Have not used it yet.


Like I said, I am planning on colourful Eyeshadow series! My love for blue eyeshadow is what give me confidence to wear bright colours. So, I am going to start with blue first. `Coconut` is one of the most the most popular and older shade; I always wanted to pick it up.

Coconut: It is a satin teal kind of shade. I am excited to try it out. 
Luckfully: I think I will love this more than Coconut. It is a much more deeper navy shade.
Telepathy: Bright Brassy-yet fluorescent golden olive-yellow shade. I don’t own anything like this. That is the simple reason I picked it up.
Shameless: I own Lace, Rex, Stereo. All of these have black base with different glitters. This is the only one I did not have, so I got. Plus, I don’t have many green shadows.
Arrow: Now this was a surprise buy. I never knew this was a shade Colourpop offered but it is actually very pretty. I am not sure how this will look on me but I am excited.

I also picked up the lip set called “Can't Stop, Won't Stop” (only because I wanted to get the free gifts)!

They also were offering free mini lipsticks with 20$ purchase. I scored Dopey, Frick N’ Frack and London Fog. I already had full-size of Frick N’ Frack and I love it. :-)

Here are items in my Second haul.

On The Fence: This is a pressed powder shade and I have only used it once. It appeared to be much drier than the other two.
Backseat: Another blue shade :-) I have not tried it yet.
Friskie: I got this for my sister. She wanted a black with tons of glitters.
Cusp: This a very green-y green! I have not tried it yet.
Dance Party: Beautyful light purple shade. ON my eyes however, it does not appear as beautiful as I thought it would be.
Cricket: This looks so incredibly complex on photos but it is quite simple bronzy grey type of a shade.

Mama: I got this Ultra Matte Lip for my sister. It is a beautiful wamr orange shade but it is such a dry formula on my lips.

Did you pick anything up?