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Saturday, 19 May 2012

Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited Swatches Part 2: Neutrals

Click through for the introduction to the new formula, and swatches part 1: colours (reds, pinks, mauves, wines, corals).

This batch features the other half of the 50 permanent shades currently available: BR (brown) and BG (beige), although both codes contain quite a few roses and pinks, and the black and white 'mixers'.

As before, I built up the swatches as necessary to show the colours most clearly (up to seven swipes for the 'very sheer' shades, only one swipe for the 'very pigmented' ones) -- see the notes for info on how pigmented each shade is.
In general, the sheerer the shade the more visible shimmer (the most shimmery shades are still less shimmery than Chanel Rouge Coco Shines however), and the more pigmented, the more like a traditional cream finish (zero shimmer, some balmy shine).

Beige (BG)
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BG910, BG911, BG920, BG921, BG922, BG930, BG931, BG 910, BG 911, BG 920, BG 921, BG 922, BG 930, BG 931
natural light
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BG910, BG911, BG920, BG921, BG922, BG930, BG931, BG 910, BG 911, BG 920, BG 921, BG 922, BG 930, BG 931
full sun
BG910 -- medium
BG911 -- medium
BG920 -- medium
BG921 -- pigmented
BG922 -- sheer
BG930 -- pigmented
BG931 -- pigmented (and gorgeous! and not remotely beige!)


lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BG935, BG940, BG941, BG950, BG955, BG960, BG965, BG 935, BG 940, BG 941, BG 950, BG 955, BG 960, BG 965
natural light
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BG935, BG940, BG941, BG950, BG955, BG960, BG965, BG 935, BG 940, BG 941, BG 950, BG 955, BG 960, BG 965
full sun
BG935
BG940
BG941
BG950
BG955
BG960
BG965 -- no. 1 bestseller in Japan, a very flattering, versatile rose
These were all uniformly pigmented, creamy 1-2 swipe wonders.


Black (BK), White (WH) and Brown (BR)
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BK009, WH001, BR740, BR741, BR750, BR760, BR780, BR790, BR791, BK 009, WH 001, BR 740, BR 741, BR 750, BR 760, BR 780, BR 790, BR 791
natural light
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura BK009, WH001, BR740, BR741, BR750, BR760, BR780, BR790, BR791, BK 009, WH 001, BR 740, BR 741, BR 750, BR 760, BR 780, BR 790, BR 791
full sun
BK009 -- one swipe, a nearly opaque balmy cream with a sheen
WH001 -- conversely it took seven swipes to build up even to this coverage, shimmery
BR740 -- medium pigment, extremely frosty
BR741 -- medium
BR750 -- pigmented
BR760 -- sheer
BR780 -- medium
BR790 -- pigmented
BR791 -- sheer, frosty

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Dainty Doll Part Deux: Blush swatches and review

By far the more successful half of my toe-dipping into this 'Specially For Pale Skin brand, I present Dainty Doll blushes 001 Hippy Hippy Shake and 003 Money Talks. Both are pigmented, finely milled and a very reasonable £13.50 for 4.6g (not 46g, Boots site) -- on my very dry skin they can feel somewhat dry but this is true for most powder products on the market so feel free to extrapolate based on your own skin/preferences.

003 Money Talks is an unusual bronzed rose with what looks like shimmer in the pan and on the arm, but translates as an intense, smooth sheen on the cheeks (even to my shimmerphobic eye). It's nicely pigmented and gives a very flattering après ski glow to pale, cool skin. (On warmer pale skins, I think it's the kind of colour that may pull muddy/terracotta.) For me, it has enough pink in it to be usable as blush or warm bronzer without looking dirty but would be an orange, shiny disaster as contour.
natural light -- this is a dry, finely milled formula that shows brush tracks
angled in full sun to catch the shimmer
Swatched with the closest shades in my stash (not very):
Rouge Bunny Rouge Gracilis, a dusty rosy mauve, which looks cooler and brighter here in contrast
and Delicata, my personal nude beige-peachy-rose-nude holy grail (it's so a thing), which looks much peachier because it lacks the mauviness of Money Talks.
(See my other swatches of the two RBR shades so you can see what mad a mad alchemical creature Money Talks is)
shade
full sun
cheeks: Money Talks // eyes: Catrice Pink Rock, The Noble Knights and Hip Hop on the Treetop, Lancôme Hypnôse Drama // lips: Burberry Bright Plum // base: Dainty Doll 001+002 mix

If Money Talks was the surprise hit within a surprise hit, 001 Hippy Hippy Shake, a paaaaale cool lilac satin, was so obviously up my street I almost perversely didn't swap for it. I'm glad I triple-reverse-psychologised myself though (yeah, take that, brain!), because it's that unicorn, an effortless pastel for the pale (cf. previous more effortful efforts).
Swatched against:
Illamasqua Katie (look how warm and dark it seems!)
Nars Gaiety (look how bright and pink!)
Hippy Hippy Shake <3 noticebly cooler and paler than the rest. True-to-pan FTW!
Shu Uemura M Pink 32E (2nd generation)
and M Soft Mauve 225 (Colour Atelier), the new version of M32E and pretty close as you see
natural light

full sun
blush: Hippy Hippy Shake // eyes: Chanel Ebouli, RBR Mountain Bluebird, Shu Uemura white+yellow from Spring Rebirth tri-colour pencil Energy Flow, Lancôme Hynôse Drama // lips: Addiction Miss You More

This looks drier on my skin than Money Talks, and some of that is attributable to the shade (chalkier) and finish (more satiny, less sheeny). Another explanation could be that it's.just.drier.
Ah, 90% ethanol, is there anything you can't do?

Ingredients:



Monday, 14 May 2012

Dainty Doll Deuxième Début: Liquid Foundation Swatches and Review

Dainty Doll is a recently relaunched mid-range brand aimed at the pale-skinned, headed and fronted by (ex-/now re-? oh who knows) Girls Aloud member Nicola Roberts -- the redhead, natch.

The original Harrods-exclusive range of foundations did not impress me (flat, basic formulas, and violently pink or yellow undertones) but positive murmurings about the new range tempted me to revisit (Dainty Doll is now widely available at Boots and lookfantastic online.)

Face products will be the main draw for this brand, as most companies in 2012 still persist in thinking that those paler than MAC 15 are a vanishingly rare breed...we're not. And we HAZ monies! Y U NO let us throw them your way, companies?! *weeps and flings doubloons weakly* Ahem, for now I'll be reviewing the liquid foundation, and in part two there will be blood blush. Based on a cursory swatch sesh in Boots, the eyeshadow and lipstick formulas are unexceptional rather than unexceptionable, and personally I've never found it a particularly pale-specific challenge to shop for those anyway...

Here's Dainty Doll Now That I've Found You Liquid Foundation (RBR much? 30ml for £22) in the two palest shades, 001 Very Light and 002 Light swatched against Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet 15:
foundation swatch mufe make up for ever mat velvet 15 dainty doll 002 001
foundation swatch mufe make up for ever mat velvet 15 dainty doll 002 001
heavy swatches, natural light
(In my opinion, Mat Velvet 15 is neutral, but beauty net consensus seems to have it leaning pink.) In any case, Dainty Doll 002 is a little darker and substantially more yellow than the MUFE, while 001 is a good step paler, looking almost white. (On my extrapolated MAC scale, MV 15 is N10, DD 002 is NC13 and DD 001 is NW5.)


Dainty Doll 001 Very Light, swatched between Yaby Daisy (an actual white) and Illamasqua Skin Base 02, to bring out its cool neutral-pinkiness as opposed to Illamasqua's warmer more pronounced pink.
foundation swatch yaby daisy dainty doll 001 illamasqua skin base 02
full sun
foundation swatch yaby daisy dainty doll 001 illamasqua skin base 02
natural light

And Dainty Doll 002 with Nars Sheer Glow Siberia (so jaundicey, I can't quite believe I've gone out in public / posted pics wearing this D:), Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer SX-01 (this is definitely yellow but looks neutral next to these other shades) and Paul&Joe Light Cream Foundation S 00 (the coolest yellow of the bunch, looks olive).
foundation swatch nars siberia kevyn aucoin sensual skin enhancer sx-01 dainty doll 001  paul joe light cream foundation s 00
full sun -- it suddenly got very cold, sorry about goosebumps
foundation swatch nars siberia kevyn aucoin sensual skin enhancer sx-01 dainty doll 001  paul joe light cream foundation s 00
natural light

Here's Dainty Doll 002 Light on me, looking a little too dark and yellow (if your monitor shows it):

The difference is probably too minor to register on most screens / any sane person's list of bothersome things but I'm enough of a special, special snowflake to feel more comfortable for slapping a thin layer of 001 Very Light over the top (approximately achieving a 3:2 mix i.e. 001.6 Quite Light):

dainty doll liquid foundation 001 002

That's also why I'm pouting: a brand especially for pale folk and I still have to mix?

A bigger disappointment was how dry and unforgiving this formula was on me -- see how matte my face looks even without setting powder? In real life it brings up a multitude of flaky and bumpy patches I didn't even know I had. I get good medium coverage from one thin layer (applied with a damp beautyblender sponge), and it's buildable to full -- though you'll have to work quickly, as this stuff isn't the most blendable, and once it sets, it sets.

Ingredients


Saturday, 12 May 2012

Shu Uemura Rouge Unlimited Swatches Part 1: Colours

These are the new Rouge Unlimited lipsticks, launched in Spring 2012. For more details, click through to the introduction.
For Part 2, the neutrals, click here.

I built up these swatches as necessary to show the colours most clearly (up to seven swipes for the 'very sheer' shades, only one swipe for the 'very pigmented' ones) -- see the notes for info on how pigmented each shade is.
In general, the sheerer the shade the more visible shimmer (the most shimmery shades are still less shimmery than Chanel Rouge Coco Shines however), and the more pigmented, the more like a traditional cream finish (zero shimmer, some balmy shine).

All pictures are taken in natural light, no flash. Click to enlarge.

Wine (WN), Mauve (MV), and Red (RD)
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura WN295, WN285, WN255, MV275, MV245, RD185, RD175, RD170,  RD160, RD155, RD145, WN 295, WN 285, WN 255, MV 275, MV 245, RD 185, RD 175, RD 170,  RD 160, RD 155, RD 145
full sun
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura WN295, WN285, WN255, MV275, MV245, RD185, RD175, RD170,  RD160, RD155, RD145, WN 295, WN 285, WN 255, MV 275, MV 245, RD 185, RD 175, RD 170,  RD 160, RD 155, RD 145
shade

WN295 v. pigmented
WN285 pigmented
WN255 sheer
MV275 pigmented
MV245 pigmented
RD185 pigmented
RD175 medium
RD170 pigmented
RD160 medium
RD155 medium
RD145 sheer


Pink (PK)
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura PK300, PK315, PK320, PK325, PK335, PK340, PK345, PK355, PK365, PK375, PK 300, PK 315, PK 320, PK 325, PK 335, PK 340, PK 345, PK 355, PK 365, PK 375
full sun
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura PK300, PK315, PK320, PK325, PK335, PK340, PK345, PK355, PK365, PK375, PK 300, PK 315, PK 320, PK 325, PK 335, PK 340, PK 345, PK 355, PK 365, PK 375
shade
PK300 v. sheer
PK315 sheer
PK320 medium
PK325 sheer and v. shimmery
PK335 sheer-medium
PK340 medium
PK345 v sheer
PK355 medium
PK365 pigmented
PK375 v. pigmented


Coral (CR) and Orange (OR)
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura OR540, OR530, OR520, CR341, CR330, CR310, OR 540, OR 530, OR 520, CR 341, CR 330, CR 310
full sun
lipstick swatch Shu Uemura OR540, OR530, OR520, CR341, CR330, CR310, OR 540, OR 530, OR 520, CR 341, CR 330, CR 310
shade
OR540 v. pigmented
OR530 medium
OR520 sheer
CR341 sheer and shimmery
CR330 medium
CR310 pigmented

Shu Uemura New Rouge Unlimited: Intro

Shu Uemura recently revamped their entire core lipstick line, launching fifty shades in a new Rouge Unlimited formula on April 1st in Japan. The packaging has also been tweaked to match the new Rouge Unlimited Supreme Shine range released in 2011.


I was a big fan of the old Rouge Unlimiteds, and for those of you who shared my love (and increasing poutiness as the shades were chopped into year by year), two warnings:
  1. these new lipsticks are entirely different textures, not a mere repackaging despite the repetition of certain shade codes/numbers
  2. no mattes D: (so we continue to wait for versions of classics like RD178M or PK360M)
The new lipsticks vary a bit colour-to-colour (to me, there seem to be three sub-categories which I'll note in swatches) but overall, they differ from the old formula thus (yes, thus):
  • totally scent-free, for those who disliked the faint candied orange blossom of the past
  • more shine and more balmy slip (rather than the older silky siliconey slip), like the popular modern jellied formulas Dior Addict/Extreme, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine or Lancôme Rouge In Love
  • (on my lips at least) not nearly as long-lasting or moisturising, though I don't find them quite as drying as I do the formulas above.
Some stats:
Old Rouge Unlimited: 3.8ml and 3.7g, also Made in Japan
New Rouge Unlimited: 3.7ml and 3.2g, Made in Japan
(making evident the lighter texture of the new ones -- see, it's not totally subjective!)

Ingredients for the NEW BK099


The swatches are split into two posts:
Part 1: Colours will feature the reds (RD), pinks (PK), corals (CR), oranges (OR), mauves (MV) and wines (WN).
Part 2: Neutrals the nudes/beiges (BG), browns (BR), black (BK) and white (WH).

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Chanel Riviere Look #2

Please excuse the absolutely dreadful lighting and lack of close-up -- all pictures taken in sepia-toned smog.

A tweaked version of the first one, with a more rounded shape (the deepest shade blended upwards at the outer corner rather than extended in a fine line) and in warmer tones (a pinked apricot replacing the gilded pink, an olive bronze replacing the frankened teal).

Eyes: Chanel Illusion D'Ombre Rivière over the mobile lid and inner corner, with Rouge Bunny Rouge Fire-Tailed Sunbird in the socket and under the lower lashline and Abyssinian Catbird along the lashline and blended up at the outer corner.
Liner: KATE Supersharp Liner S BK-1
Mascara: Lancôme Hypnôse Drama W
Brows: Shu Uemura H9 pencil Stone Grey
Lips: YSL Rouge Pur Couture Glossy Stain 16 Poupre Preview
Base: Shu Uemura Stage Performer Instant Glow, Ellis Faas concealer S201 under eyes, Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer SX01 on blemishes. No blush(!)

This new glossy stain formed part of my swap parcel, and you can gauge just how uncomfortable I am in such a fluoro cool colour by counting the numbers of of green (my comfort colour) and yellow (current fav'rite colour) I felt I needed to don
collar: ASOS // blouse: Topshop // nails: Essie Pretty Edgy // ring: personal gift

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Magazines #2: Marie Claire Beauty Bible SS 2012

Anyone who's flipped through my pinboards will guess that I have a wee fashion magazine addiction, which has not been allocated its requisite % of drivel. And if you hadn't seen it, here's Part #1: Vivi Magazine, of what will imminently become a series.
 
 ...starting right now. Marie Claire Beauty Bible is a biannual cosmetics supplement which is sold independently of the main magazine in Hong Kong for the very accessible price of HK$20 (less than £2). It offers a tightly-edited rundown of the latest trends and new products each season with a cleaner layout and less padding/digressive random than Japanese beauty mags, which is why I try to pick up a copy whenever I can but also why I wouldn't keep one past its season.
cover

Beauty trends 
I enjoy the more fashion/runway tilt of these collages as distinct from Japanese magazines which focus more on the domestic OL market or target very specific subcultures  and rely on a small stable of house models with a fairly narrow range of eye/face shapes.
What a delicious variety of looks -- blue eyeshadow FTW
Graphic shapes to play with
The magazine's own spinoffs on the trend, on three different eyeshapes

I prefer their take on the "English Rose" thing to the minimalist runway pics (umpteenth clean skin, bambi lashes + slick of lip balm season, yawn)
I'm not sure if this is an intentional Beatles ref or the Engrish adjectival striking again. *ponders*

Hair trends
does what it says on the tin

yep

....seriously. Call me a saucy pedantic wretch but I think this answers my earlier Beatles question.
  
New Releases: false lashes oh wait, mascaras *eyeroll* We'll just look at the wands, then. The ones on the left give a more natural and the right a more dramatic look.


Tutorial: eyeliner
A back-to-basics primer about brushes, the differences between pencil, liquid and gel, and a few notes on tweaking your line to suit your eyeshape.


Editorial
I'm currently trying to work out ways to wear white eyeshadow and liner; this is both sharp and soft
Judge away, but I think this is kind of awesome and subverts the prim dress

Skincare articles: 10 pages on on various kinds of acids, some products featuring them and the best bases, concentrations and combinations. 
incidentally a flattering soft take on This Summer's Orange

most interesting to me: unfamiliar acids used in Asian whitening/brightening products

And a paean to that Asian beauty staple, lotion -- featuring products split into four types (ultra-hydrating, whitening, oil-production-balancing and anti-ageing) and thirteen ways to use the stuff, from the obvious (use it for facial massage! use it as a daily five-minute mask! mix it with your foundation to lighten the coverage and texture!) to the intriguing (use a cotton pad doused in SPF-containing lotion to blot the face and refresh cakey makeup? likewise, treat it as a makeup primer? and on a cotton bud, to clean up makeup mistakes and prep the skin for corrections).
some lotion-massage techniques
Due to copyright, I posted less than 10% of the magazine, but it should give you an idea of the house style. This issue also included extended features on foundations, nails, fashion, perfume, overnight skincare, 24 hour moisture, and the expected summer-issue pieces on pedicures, hair removal and dieting (boo!)