Friday, February 28, 2014

Chanel Spring 2014 Notes de Printemps Makeup Review + Tutorial



I purchased my top picks from the Chanel Spring 2014 Notes de Printemps Collection back in mid-December, and I am finally getting around to sharing my thoughts with you now! After a couple weeks of playing with the products, I found my eyeshadow purchases are some of the best Chanel investments I have made in years! Most of you know I rarely gravitate towards pinks, but I may even go back for the Illusion D'Ombre in Impulsion to wear with the eyeshadow duo.

I have been asked time and time again about the Le Blush Cremes, and while they are a beautifully packaged and executed product, I would be hard-pressed to purchase another. I love the brightness of Intonation ($38 USD) since it does mimic my natural flush, but it is more of a special occasion product that I'd reach for if being photographed. If an exceptionally pretty, limited edition pale pink is released, I may leap for it. Otherwise, I still stick to my Joues Contraste powder blushes. I'm old-school like that! 


If you do not already own Tapage ($27 USD), run to a counter now! It is a much brighter, shimmer-free version of Coromandel. As much as I adore the cooler tones of Pirate and Rouge Rubis, I personally think Tapage is the best red nail polish Chanel has done recently. The Rouge Allure lipstick in Melodieuse ($35 USD) is the only one of the several in this collection that jumped out at me. It looks quite red in the bullet, but it translates to a softer watermelon look on my lips. It is an ideal Spring lipstick, pigmented and flattering, but I believe Melodieuse will suit very fair skin best! The Glossimer in Murmure ($29.50 USD) is creamy, milky, and pigmented perfection. It is one of the best shimmer-less glossimers released since my Holy Grail peach, Volupte. I love how moisturizing yet long lasting this formula is!


The eyeshadows in this collection were phenomenal. Though I did like the look of the eyeshadow quad, I left the pale beige and the muted lilac were unnecessary additions to the color scheme. I went straight for the 'meat and potatoes' palette, Rose Majeur ($42 USD). The pigmentation and blending impressed me at first swipe, but this duo must be used with an eyeshadow brush. Use a flat shader with a good amount of resistance! Also, I read some reviews that the Illusion D'Ombre in Diapason ($36 USD) had some fall out. I did not have issue with glitter falling, but it does require some patience to build up the color. Take the time to layer and you will be rewarded with a gorgeous smoky purple base and sparkling blue duochrome!


My favorites from my haul, which I highly recommend, are the Tapage Nail Lacquer, the Rose Majeur Eyeshadow Duo, the Illusion D'Ombre in Diapason, and the Glossimer in Murmure. That is not to say the Intonation blush and Melodieuse lipstick are not worth the splurge! I just cannot imagine reaching for them as regularly as my favorites.

Now that we have wrapped up the review, I hope you'll enjoy the review and tutorial!


Spring 2014 Notes De Printemps Products Reviewed: 

Brushes Used:
Shu Uemura 11 Kolinsky Eye
Hakuhodo B512BkSL Cheeks

Additional Makeup Worn:
Chanel MatLumiere in 40  
+ Chanel CC Cream in 20 
EM Michelle Phan Concealer Palette in Light 
Hourglass Film Noir Mascara 
Velour Lashes in Oops Naughty Me 
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!
EM Michelle Phan Scribble Liquid Eyeliner

Nails:
Chanel Spring 2014 Tapage

Earrings:
Chanel

Sweater:
Kate Spade

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Monday, February 24, 2014

Burt's Bees Lip Gloss, Lip Shimmer, Lip Shine, and Tinted Lip Balm Reviews, Photos, Swatches



Over the years, I have found that Burt's Bees lip products are consistently some of the best affordable lip care products. I will be featuring their Lip Color products, which are fabulous budget buys and 100% natural!

Manicure Details: YSL & Zoya [review here]
The LIP SHINE ($7 USD) provides sheer color enriched with the moisturizing benefits of Apricot wax. I love how this dense, plush gloss glides on the lips for a sweet and super shiny finish. I have Pucker, a soft red that will suit any complexion. The Lip Shine was the 2013 Oprah Magazine O-wards Winner, so you know it has to be worth a shot! Try applying it over a Lip Shimmer for a pretty multi-dimensional effect.

The LIP GLOSS ($9 USD) delivers richly pigmented, pearlized color with high impact shine. This formula is enriched with nourishing oils to promote healthy looking lips and is available in 12 shades! Bonus: The shimmer in these Lip Glosses do not irritate my dry, sensitive lips. I did not expect to love it, but Spring Splendor color is the perfect 'My-Lips-But-Better' shade. Layer it over the Tinted Lip Balm for the illusion of a fuller looking pout!

The TINTED LIP BALM ($7 USD) is ideal for when the lips require a hint of color and a whole lot of conditioning. The Shea butter and botanical waxes in these tinted lip balms will help to soothe and smooth your lips. I own one of the new shades called Sweet Violet, a flattering and brightening pink-purple hue, but there are 9 wearable everyday shades for you to choose from! I may go back for the lighter pinks, Blush Orchid and Petunia.

The LIP SHIMMER ($5 USD) is a Burt's Bees classic. This was the first Burt's Bees Lip Color product I ever tried, nearly 6 years ago while I was in college! Oh, the nostalgia.. This slim lip balm provides luminescent, full coverage color and lightweight moisture with an invigorating peppermint flavor. Swatched today is Peony, a metallic pink-mauve, but my favorite is Apricot. P.S. Cocoa, the perennial favorite for medium tan to dark complexions, is finally back in stock.


If you're interested in trying out some natural lip colors, just answer four quick questions from the Lip Shade Finder here to find your perfect shades! The recommendations for both Adventurous and Go-To categories are surprisingly right on-target!


Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Burt's Bees through their partnership with POPSUGAR. 
While I was compensated by POPSUGAR to write a post about Burt's Bees, all opinions are my own. 
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Saturday, February 22, 2014

EMPTIES: Products I've Used Up! Featuring Kiehl's, Dior, SK-II, Koh Gen Do, Shu Uemura & More!



I recently asked on Twitter if any of you were interested in seeing an "Empties" video, and the response was so great that I decided to go ahead and run with the idea! I accidentally threw a couple empty bottles out before I was able to film this, but I will try to review/mention them another time. Now, I generally end up going through hair, body care, and skin care products first, but I will try to include more makeup products in the future! You will see many of my essentials in the video -- products that I reach for almost every single day -- as well as new product recommendations. I hope you find this video gave you some valuable insight into my most-loved products!

     *Also mentioned: Kerastase Reflection Bain Chroma Captive Shampoo


Makeup Worn:
Chanel MatLumiere in 40 + Chanel CC Cream in 20
EM Michelle Phan Concealer Palette in Light 
Tom Ford Spring 2014 Lip Color Sheer in Pink Dune 
Velour Lashes Strike A Pose 
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!

Nails:
YSL Spring 2014 Rose Scabiosa [review here]
Zoya PixieDust in Carter

Earrings:
House of Harlow White Sunburst Studs

Shirt:
J.Crew

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Friday, February 21, 2014

TOM FORD Summer 2014 Beauty Sneak Peek!



Tom Ford's Summer 2014 beauty collection will launch in May, but I wanted to share some sneak peek photos and details now! The model in the campaign ad is holding a compact that looks very much like my Holy Grail, absolutely essential Tom Ford Bronzing Powder, though the packaging is a lacquered white instead of the signature cognac. It is likely safe to assume this new compact will be another limited edition piece, and according to famed makeup artist Mary Greenwell's recent Instagram post, the contents are three eyeshadows, one blush, and one bronzer. I cannot wait to try this Eye & Cheek palette, since it looks perfect for traveling!

The other two products featured in Mary's photo are the Lip & Cheek Stains Shimmers, which are stick cream products packaged in lipstick bullets. Tom Ford has released a stain version of the product like this in red called Tainted Love a few seasons ago, but I am excited to try what looks like a pearly white highlighter (far left). It does appear from the official campaign ad that the Lip Color Sheers will be making a comeback as well. I hope to see more shades released, as I am head over heels for the new formula!


UPDATE: The London-based fashion edition Navaz Batliwalla posted two non-filter photos of the Spring and Summer collections on Instagram for a better look at the shade selection! The gorgeous eyeshadow trio is a champagne glitter with taupe and navy mattes. The two new Lip and Cheek SHIMMERS are a pearly white and warm gold, which is even more exciting! I think they will be must-haves for glowing summer skin!



But until Summer arrives, let's continue to bask in the glory of the lovely SPRING 2014 collection!
  • Take a look at swatches of all new 8 Lip Color Sheers HERE.
  • Don't forget to check out the swatches of the 4 Nail Lacquers HERE.

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Thursday, February 20, 2014

YSL La Laque Couture in Rose Scabiosa #48 Nail Polish Review, Photos, Swatches



YSL's Spring 2014 "Flower Crush" Rose Scabiosa ($25 USD) is my first creme nail polish from the reformulated La Laque Couture nail polish collection. I generally prefer the juicy, glossy finishes of Chanel's Le Vernis, but I couldn't resist this unique bubblegum pink. It is not a shade of pink I generally gravitate towards, but my sister managed to persuade me, raving about the formula. This Spring release is as phenomenal as she claimed, as Rose Scabiosa is unlike some of the heavier or chalkier YSL cream finishes I have tried in the past. Check out the comparisons and more swatches after the jump!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Get Ready with RAE: Valentine's Day Makeup feat. Tom Ford & Armani Favorites + DailyLook Giveaway



Whether you are single or taken this Valentine's Day, don't forget to smile! This may be one of the most commercialized days of the year, but it is all about embracing ALL our loved ones and not just our romantic interests. And yes, it is totally okay to buy yourself chocolate or flowers, whatever your prefer! As a special treat to celebrate, we are hosting a giveaway and 2 lucky winners will each score a $100 Gift Card of store credit to shop at one of my favorite online boutiques! I hope this opportunity to win will brighten up your day that much more xo 


Makeup Worn:
Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation in 213 mixed with SUQQU Frame Fix Foundation in 003 
EM Michelle Phan Concealer Palette in Light 
Bobbi Brown Eye Definer Brush 
Tom Ford Smoky Eye Brush 
Tom Ford Spring 2014 Lip Color Sheer in Summer Fling 
Velour Lashes You Complete Me 
     *Use promo code RAEVELOUR to receive 15% off your purchase!

Hair:
GHD Gold Professional 2" Styler 
     *Not 1.5 inches as stated, my apologies for the mix-up!

Nails:
Tom Ford Spring 2014 Nail Lacquers 

Outfit Worn:
For Love and Lemons Lulu Peplum Top in XS 
Chinese Laundry Jackpot Heels in Size 6 
House of Harlow White Sunburst Studs
House of Harlow Three Caves Cuff Bracelet 
Zara White/Black Blazer [several years old]

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The giveaway is open internationally, but only to those that live in countries that DailyLook
currently services. Find the full list here to see if you qualify!

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

EM Michelle Phan Makeup Brushes Reviews, Photos, Giveaway



Despite the booming popularity of synthetic brushes, I still find that the perfect combination of quality, density, and shape are nearly impossible to find with synthetic fibers. EM Michelle Phan teamed up with master Japanese calligraphy brush makers to make some of the best that I have tried yet. The synthetic fibers are kind to my skin, with the right amount of give without losing any resistance. I do wish the handles were longer for storing and professional use purposes, but the shorter length is perfect for those who travel with makeup often.


My favorite of the eight is the luxurious All Over Face brush ($29 USD). It is ideal for use with powder foundations and setting powders, though it can be used to apply bronzer as well. It feels so plush against the face, and the brush is densely packed — not thin and floppy like other synthetic face brushes I have used in the past. The combination of fullness and resistance is a result of the brush head's slightly shorter bristles, approximately 1 cm shorter than the industry's standard powder brush. I love that the rounded and tapered synthetic fibers of this All Over Face brush allow for the most even distribution, and you can see in the video how it provides an airbrushed finish. Even though the $29 price tag may seem steep, it is worth every penny!    

Note: I do love the Sigma Angled Flat Top Foundation brush for liquid foundation, but I cannot recommend the Mr. and Mrs. Bunny
synthetic brush kits since I find the powder and blush brushes too thin and lacking enough resistance for efficient blending.  


The Pointed Foundation brush ($26 USD) is perfect for liquid and cream foundations. I am currently loving the combination of SUQQU's Frame Fix and Koh Gen Do's Aqua Foundation, and this brush is ideal for a streak-free application with the mix. A foundation brush has to be excellent for me to take the time to use it, since I much prefer to work with clean fingers on my own face. This pointed version, however, is excellent because it is precise enough for work around the corners of the nose and eyes yet allows for layering to build coverage. I blend using circular motions and then dab gently on the cheeks to build coverage.

The Flat Foundation brush ($26 USD) is officially one of my favorites for concealer application. If you do not mind paddle brushes and are looking for a mutli-tasker for foundation and concealer application, then this brush will be worth the full $26. I personally never use paddle styles for foundation, but I do find this tapered Flat Foundation brush is a wonderful tool for applying concealer under the eyes and on my acne scars since the larger surface area makes blending a breeze. It reminds me of an affordable version of Le Metier de Beaute's trusty concealer brush ($50 USD and also synthetic), just larger and straighter across the top.   


The Angled Blush Brush ($24 USD) is loosely packed in comparison to the All Over Face or Pointed Foundation brushes, but it applies and blends color on the apples of the cheeks best. The edge can also be used to run bronzer or contour powder through the hollows of the cheeks for definition. This brush in particular feels extra soft against the face, so I highly recommend this for sensitive skin. The diagonal shape is reminiscent of Shu Uemura's Natural 20h brush. 


The Angled Eyeliner brush ($12 USD) is perfect for use on the lash lines with powder eyeshadows or even gel liner if I were in a pinch. It is most reminiscent of Dior's eyeliner brush. The bristles are tapered, while EM's is angled, but both are very short in comparison to popular eyeliner brushes like MAC's 266. I have found the shorter height results in much less or no fall out when used with powders.

The All Over Shadow Brush ($15 USD) is a versatile eyeshadow application shape, basic but practical. I use the flat side of the brush for applying base shadows on the lids and the rounded edge to blend out the borders. Although it was intended for powder eyeshadows, the synthetic fibers are equally as efficient with cream products. The All Over Shadow is fuller than the Angled Shadow.

The Angled Shadow Brush ($15 USD) is intended for applying eyeshadow to the corners of the eyes as well as shaping the creases for more contour and depth. Try using the angled side to run across the middle of the lid and feel for the eye socket using windshield wiper motions. In the tutorial, I used it to pull the shadow shape out into a cat eye style to elongate my eyes.

The Lip Brush ($12 USD) is compatible with any lip formula. It applies lipstick and lip gloss smoothly, and the flat tip creates precise lines. I like to use this lip brush with heavier lipstick formulas since I can control the coverage. Instead of demonstrating the full pigmentation of Tom Ford's new Paradiso, I chose to demonstrate a sheerer, softer way to wear the lipstick.


BOTTOM LINE: Try starting with the All Over Face, Pointed Foundation, and Flat Foundation styles if you have been looking to splurge on quality synthetic fiber brushes!

To see the brushes in action, feel free to watch my tutorial (featuring the new limited edition Valentine's Day releases) below and join the giveaway to win a complete set of your own EM Michelle Phan brushes! Best of luck, everyone! xoxo


Makeup Worn:
EM Michelle Phan Love Me for Me Powder Compact in Linen 8
     *Order the powder compact and get the matching full-size shade of liquid foundation FREE!
EM Michelle Phan Valentine Life Moment: Seductress Eyeshadows in Sassy Girl, Instant Attraction & Lady in Gold
EM Michelle Phan Valentine Life Moment: Secret Admirer Blush in Day Dreaming & Just A Glance Eyeshadow
Eyeko Eye Do Eyeliner & Mascara Set
Tom Ford Spring 2014 Lip Color Sheer in Paradiso

Shirt:
J.Crew 

Earrings:
House of Harlow Sunburst Studs

Nails:

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Smashbox Full Exposure Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches




Today's review is all about shapes! Why does shape matter? Just like you dress to flatter your body shape, makeup can be applied to enhance the shape of your eyes for your most gorgeous look. If you're not sure what your eye shape is, check out this video that Smashbox created this video to help you figure it out: http://youtu.be/3Ppo52SchAk. Four quick questions confirmed that I have almond eyes! 

To embrace this shape, I have experimented with different looks from the Smashbox Full Exposure Palette's "Get the Look" insert. If you are just getting started with eyeshadows, the insert will be a useful tool for building technique. The Full Exposure Palette is a set of universally flattering neutrals that is essential, effortless, and enhanced for your eye shape. I love that this palette takes eye shapes into consideration at all, which makes creating a complete eye look easier to approach. 


I adore the straightforward, organizational element of the Full Exposure Palette. With the shimmers in the top row and mattes along the bottom, it's easy to turn up or tone down the glam factor. The eyeshadow formulas are soft but pigmented and easy to blend, some of the best I have tried from Smashbox. The sophisticated shimmers and the velvety-smooth mattes feel silky on the lids, and the colors are versatile enough to go from minimally pretty to smoky sexy. My favorite colors are the matte mid-tone brown and mid-tone tan as well as the matte ashy dark brown. The chocolate brown and grey multicolor pearl shimmers are the absolute best — perfect for evening looks!


The exclusive dual-ended eyeshadow brush was designed to work specifically with the shadows in the palette and take the guess work out of application. I love the ultra-luxe, fluffy white side for blending the mattes. I use the flat, densely packed side for setting down shimmers on the lids as directed. 


Don't forget to enter the Smasbox #shapematters Selfie Sweepstakes for a chance to be featured on the Smashbox site and win fabulous prizes, including Smashbox products and a trip to L.A! Submit a selfie showing off your eye shape and hashtag it with #shapematters.  You can enter on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or you can upload your selfie directly to the contest site at www.smashbox.com/fullexposurepalette. Just make sure to make your settings public so that your picture(s) show up on the contest page!  


Smashbox lives for lipstick. Gets excited about primers. (No, seriously, they do.) But most of all, they love sharing their makeup secrets with you. That’s why they’ve created the Full Exposure Palette—a set of universally awesome neutrals that’s essential, effortless and enhanced for your eye shape! This palette was developed because their pros needed it on set at Smashbox Studios in L.A. Just like you dress for your body shape, it’s important to apply makeup based on your eye shape—so Smashbox artists are exposing all of their secrets to get the most out of your shape with this palette. It’s all about being your most kickass beautiful self at Smashbox.

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Smashbox via Glam Media. The opinions expressed
herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Smashbox.

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