Posts Tagged Makeup Collections
Today, I have for you the last installment in my blush/bronzer/highlighter collection!! By the end of all these swatches, my arm was red and rashy LOL – it was quite a day! But I’m really pleased with the photos and swatches, and I think I see some holes in my collection that need filling!!! Mwahahahahaha… Oh. Sorry!
Today we’re going to look at the highlighters/illuminators in my stash. While I sort of feel like I have a fair amount, none of them really knock my socks off, so I feel like it’s lacking quite a bit. But, you can make the call when you see what I’ve got I guess!
For some of you, these products will be more like shimmering blushes rather than highlighters – indeed, on me I usually wear Estee Lauder’s Shimmering Sands and Clinique’s Bronze as a cheek color rather than a highlighter/illuminator, though that might change this week. You could probably layer these under a blush and still get the illuminating effect. I know some of you that own Bobbi Brown’s Nectar definitely use it as a blush as well – for me it’s too light to do so.
MUFE’s Uplight is the real true ‘highlighter’ in the group, but it’s got glitter particles that make it more suitable for night than day. Typically I use NARS South Beach Multiple as a compliment to my blush/bronzer, which gives a fantastic peachy-bronze glow to my skin (though it fades within a few hours). Clinique’s Bronze Up-lighting, which has about 1/3 left and is the oldest product here, has a bronze-rose tone that gives a fantastic glow, but is pretty intense and needs to be blended out well. The ‘Natural’ version of this product is a total winner, and I would recommend choosing that over this shade.
Swatches above taken with flash. Left to right: Estee Lauder Shimmering Sands, NARS South Beach Multiple, Clinique Bronze Up-lighting, MUFE Uplight #23, Bobbi Brown Nectar ShimmerbrickNatural light. Left to right: Estee Lauder Shimmering Sands, NARS South Beach Multiple, Clinique Bronze Up-lighting, MUFE Uplight #23, Bobbi Brown Nectar Shimmerbrick
While you can distinguish for the most part between each of these, I still always find luminizers and highlighters kind of funny, because at the end of the day they all look pretty similar when worn. Clearly, Shimmering Sands darker rose-bronze tones make it more of a bronzer/blush than a highlight, and could have been grouped as such, but I was trying to follow the names of products when posed with the ‘what goes where’ question. NARS South Beach is sort of a lighter shade of Shimmering Sands, and Clinique’s Up-Lighting here is also along the same color lines, but leans more rose than bronze. MUFE’s Uplight #23 is a champagne shimmer, and Bobbi Brown’s Nectar, while appearing quite coral on some skintones, looks downright pale pink on mine.
I also wanted to show a comparison between the two NARS Multiples (South Beach and Laguna) and Clinique’s Up-lighting, as they all are for the same kind of purpose – illuminate with a touch of color. I had initially paired Laguna in this group, but changed it to the bronzer section as it is likely used that way by fairer skintones.
Each of these are similar in their own right, but again – Clinique’s Bronze is actually more rose; South Beach is more of a pale bronzed rose; and Laguna is more brown. They are all distinguishable when worn on the face.
And there you have it – my entire blush/bronzer/highlighter collection to peruse, condemn, laugh at – whatever suits your fancy I hope it entertained you at the very least while I’m away! I feel
satisfied OK with the collection, but there are some new shades I’d like to add, while also eliminating some that have worn out there welcome. I see room for some berry tones, as well as some neutral shades and lighter-toned illuminators that can be worn with blush/bronzer, and don’t overpower it. Can you say ‘hooray’ for an excuse to shop!?
Final thoughts? What shades are you coveting, if any? What shades can you suggest I add? Is my collection meager, just right, or too much? Inquiring minds want to know??
Oh my goodness, it doesn’t end, does it!? Let me tell you, swatching all these blush took half a day to do; I can’t even imagine attempting something like this if you had a bigger collection than I (and I know some of you do!). If I hadn’t been off for a couple days before we left, this would never have gotten done. But, it’s been great swatching and categorizing some of my blush, as it allows me to see just where I can fit one more in LOL! And, more importantly I hope it helps you out too! I feel that you can never have TOO many swatches of a product
Today we’re going to look at something very fitting: orange blushes and bronzers, perfect shades for a tropical vacation The bronzer swatches were reworked several times, because some of these products could be considered illuminators too, making it tricky to decide where they should go. Again, I made a judgement call and I’m pretty happy with how it all turned out! We’ll begin with the orange shade first however, as the collection is VERY small:
Yep, that’s pretty much it!! And it’s not even because I fear orange – in fact, I think it’s gorgeous and I stare at other orange blush longingly (I was sorely tempted by MAC’s new Modern Mandarin from Tres Cheek!). However, it’s tricky to get a true ‘orange’ – usually they lean peach or coral one way or another, and it’s there that I start feeling like I might have a shade similar in tone. Of course, orange blush isn’t for everyone, and those mid-way shades are often more wearable, but with my darker skintone I like to be a bit more daring. Seems I need to get on that then, don’t I?
Anyway, Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Cream #10 is a ‘golden tangerine sheen’ which seems a bit misleading, like it might be sheer – if you recall my review on this, it is NOT. It’s a tough shade to wear, but I think with a little work it can be absolutely beautiful! (Note that it can also be worn on lips, but isn’t recommended for eyes) NARS Taj Mahal, described as a ‘blazing burnt orange with gold shimmer’ (wowza!), is pretty much THE orange blush if you’ve ever thought about indulging yourself. Let’s look at some swatches:
As you can see, neither of these are for the faint of heart, but if you’re looking to be a little bit daring, here are two options to allow you to have some fun! While both of these do require a light hand, as they’re orange and shimmery – c’mon! – the orange tone lends itself a great, warm glow to the skin that’s simply stunning come Summertime. I’m definitely wearing Taj Mahal while I’m away!! Speaking of which, here’s what it looks like actually worn (pre-tan):
Not so scary, right? LIGHT HAND people, and make sure to buff it into the skin well!
Now, onwards to the bronzers!! Half of these will not be getting much play while I’m away, as I’ll be too tanned for them to show up at all. I still sometimes shake my head at owning any, but they do add a nice warm glow during my more sallow months I guess!
I recently swapped for the MAC Refined Golden (in Style Warrior packaging), and while it gives me a really believable bronzed look (not too orange or brown), it’s almost too subtle. It’s going to be essentially useless until next Winter, so I might swap it away. Milani’s Sunset Duo in Sunset Beach is one of the cheapest products I own (I don’t own many!) and yet it looks absolutely amazing on, just really natural – and the bronzed shade alone is great for a contour as well. NYC’s Mosaic Face Powder in All-Over Bronze Glow is another cheapo product, but not as deserving of praise; it transfers to clothing etc. easily (if I use blotting powders, its everywhere) and it’s REALLY dark, even for me – I’m taking it to Jamaica in hopes that once I’m tanned it’ll actually look good. The NARS Multiples have a great consistency to them, not greasy at all and easy to use, but I don’t find they wear well – this bronze-y shade is no exception. Lastly, the Laguna Illuminator I raved about last year: I still love it, in indoor lighting – its just that the big chunks of glitter in it are deterring for wearing it outdoors. I’m going to pull this out for our evenings while away
Above, with flash. Left to right: NARS Laguna Multiple, NARS Laguna Illluminator, NYC All-Over Bronze Glow, MAC Refined Golden, Milani Sunset BeachAbove, natural light. Left to right: NARS Laguna Multiple, NARS Laguna Illluminator, NYC All-Over Bronze Glow, MAC Refined Golden, Milani Sunset Beach
The NARS Laguna Multiple is really more of an illuminator itself on me rather than a bronzer, but it’s got brownish tones – hence why I categorized it this way In the flash photos, you can see the glitter in the Laguna Illuminator – a shame, because otherwise the shade is a great match for me. You can’t tell how dark the NYC bronzer is here, and in fact the brown shade isn’t terrible, it’s just that it’s just so pigmented it goes on far too heavily. Alternatively, for the MAC swatch, I had to go over and over again with product to get it to show up as much as it did – it seems pretty goof-proof, so might be a good option if your fair and in the market for a bronzer. The swatch of Sunset Beach is only of the bronzer part and not including the blush; when you swirl the two together, you get the nicest plum-brown shade that is insanely flattering on my skintone. Here’s a few face shots for proof:
BAM! Another part of my collection, down! Are you getting bored/tired yet?? There’s only one more left to go!! And if you haven’t already, be sure to check out Part I and II!
And now I’d like your honest opinion – do you think I should bother with bronzers at all, or is it kind of silly? Do you wear bronzer year-round or just certain times of the month?
Hello my dears! I hope this Tuesday finds you very well By now, I’ve gotten into the groove and I’m hopefully nice and relaxed (all the free booze doesn’t hurt!). Today I have some more of my blush collection for you: ‘reds’ and plums. I put red in quotations because they’re not exactly red, but their of that variety so lets just go with that (anyone else find categorizing blush shades super-difficult!?).
We’ll begin with the questionable ‘red’ shades:
Notice anything about my MAC blush? Like the fact that it’s BROKEN!?! I dropped it back in February, after I’d only had it for about a month, and you know there isn’t anything worse than dropping makeup and it breaking. I was pissed. It makes me not even want to use it much, but I’m trying to get over that!!
Anyway. Even though MAC’s Early Morning is described as a ‘peachy-pink,’ I find on me it looks much more like a peachy-red, and more of a burnished shade, so I pulled it in with this group. It’s probably fairly close to NARS Torrid when worn, but I wanted things to look pretty and complimentary in the product shots, so… NARS Turkish Red is a deep red cream blush, which I received in a swap last Fall – it’s now discontinued. CoverFX Garnet is probably my oldest blush, as showcased by -*GASP!*- PAN!! It’s part of the BronzedFX collection, but I feel it’s far too reddish to be considered a bronzer. Its a great shade though; it looks fantastic with tanned skin in the Summer and great for a windblown flush in the Fall.
As you can see, these blush aren’t exactly ‘red’ but they definitely have red tones in them. Turkish Delight is a bit tricky to make work sometimes, but when it does, it truly looks stunning! Garnet is just a great tone all-around with it’s brick-red qualities, and the shimmer isn’t so much that it’s gaudy. Early Morning is a very wearable shade as well, as it IS coral (which works for most skintones) but with a faded, dusty tone to which you can wear very soft and subtle, or with a heavier hand to give the face a windburned look (which sounds weird but looks kinda great!).
Next, let’s take a gander at some of the plummier tones I have in my stash, which aren’t always the most popular picks because it can sometimes give a bruised quality, but can also be terribly flattering:
Plum blush actually looks quite lovely on my skintone, but like many I don’t gravitate toward them very often. My first experience with plummy tones was with Tarte’s Blushing Bride Cheek Stain, a sheer deep plum, which I actually used first while staying with a friend in Toronto. I loved it’s natural and glowing effect – but I find it’s lasting power and the stickiness leave something to be desired. I also find it’s a bit too muted to show up much my skintone. The other two shades here are just perfect though; NARS Sin, described as a ‘berry tone with gold shimmer,’ was a recent acquisition this year and it’s gives a great warmed-up look to my paler Winer face, and Bobbi Brown’s Pot Rouge in Velvet Plum is one of my favorite natural-looking blushes to use in the Summer.
I haven’t been wearing Velvet Plum much, which I hope to change when I come back from Jamaica – it really gives my skin a glow and looks super-natural and fresh. Unfortunately, it looks like it’s been discontinued since the update to the packaging, so if you love it – you’re outta luck! Sin will likely take a back seat until next Fall when my tan fades, as I suspect it won’t show up much on my darker skin. As for the Tarte stain…I think it’s days are numbered. It looks fantastic on my fairer-skinned counterparts, so perhaps I’ll leave it with someone who’ll give it a better home. It just doesn’t get any attention and there’s still quite a bit left.
Part II finished on my blush collection!! Be sure to check out Part I – Pinks and Peach/Corals – as well!
What are you’re thought so far? See any glaring gaps in my shade selections, and particular products that I absolutely MUST own??
Since it’s a well-known fact that blush addiction is 1) contagious, and 2) that it spreads quickly, I thought I’d leave you with a little *something* while I’m away this week – my gift to you It’s truly scary how quickly one can go from owning a handful of blush to moving into double-digits in an alarmingly quick fashion. At the beginning of the year, I think I had 8 (plus a handful of highlighters and bronzers, so around 14 total), and in three short months I have pretty much doubled that number – yikes!! I was so easy to judge when it was someone else, but I see how quickly things can go downhill. It’s a
fun ride slippery slope, but gosh are there ever some beautiful shades out there! It’s so easy to fall prey to their powers.
The first installment in what will be a week-long series, are my pink and peach/coral shades. It blows me away how some of these looks so similar in the pan, yet look nothing alike when swatched/worn. I played around with the groupings a bit, but am fairly satisfied in how I divided them in the end. Let’s begin with the pink blushes:
MAC’s Madly Magenta, a matte cream, is really too violet for this grouping, but it’s the only one of it’s kind in my stash, so it’s joining the team. I bought it well over a year ago, but the other three were bought or acquired over the past four months. Benefit Bella Bamba is a shimmering ‘watermelon pink’; Chanel’s Blush de Horizon is a shimmering cool-ish pink, and theBalm’s Down Boy is a matte baby pink.
Over the past few months, I’m coming to realize that what looks like one thing in the pan might be something else entirely when worn. I thought for sure that Down Boy would look chalky on me, but it doesn’t at all – it’s just a lovely subtle pink flush. I was surprized and slightly disappointed to see how close Bella Bamba and Blush de Horizon was, though Bella Bamba does have more pink pigmentation. I’m still working on MAC’s Madly Magenta…maybe when I’m more tanned I’ll figure it out.
Next up, we have my peach/coral shades – my favorite color of blush. I find myself always looking at these when I’m shopping, but so far I’ve been able to stop myself from buying more, until I can confidently say it’s a color I do not own.
I know that Illamaqua’s Tweak (described as a deep hot pink) looks far too pinky to be here, but it’s too warm to be included with the ‘pinks’ group, and again it was one of a kind, so here it is. It actually wasn’t so far off from NARS Torrid, a ‘warm coral’ with shimmer, so it seemed to fit. MUFE’s First Kiss HD Blush is a bright apricot (which is the only recent *purchase* out of this group), and theBalm’s Hot Mama is a pinky-peach with shimmer.
It still blows me away every time how light Hot Mama is, when it looks so similar in the pan to Torrid. Also, comparing Torrid in the pan to Benefit’s Bella Bamba, they look so close, and yet Torrid swatched/worn is SO much deeper than it looks – it’s shocking. I was also surprized at how much more orange-leaning MUFE’s #12 First Kiss looks when compared to other shades – when I bought it I thought I might have repeated something else in my stash. I’m please to know that I didn’t
As a bonus shot, here’s what Illamasqua Tweak looks like when worn (on me):
In these shots, it looks like it should be with the pink family, doesn’t it?
So, there you have it – Part I of my ever-expanding blush collection! I hope you enjoyed it – stay tuned tomorrow for Part II!!
Do you own any of these shades? Were any swatches surprizing to you too? What is your favorite blush shade?