Tag Archives: High-end

Dry Shampoos & Dark Hair: Did any of these really work?

Best dry shampoos for dark hair

Which of these five dry shampoos got a passing grade and which one got an F?

I colour my hair. I’ve been battling greys since I was in my 20s (sadly its hereditary). Visiting the salon every 4-5 weeks to have my roots done is hard on my hair. I’m sure those of you with colour treated hair can relate. Any type of chemical processing can really leave your hair dry and damaged. A couple of years ago, I decide to try to join the “no poo” movement and gradually decrease how frequently I shampooed my hair. Instead of washing my hair daily, I have now reduced it to twice (sometimes 3 times) a week. I can’t even begin to tell you what a difference this has made in the health and texture of my hair. Its so much softer and more manageable. In between shampoos, I will often use a dry shampoo on my roots. I thought I’d do a quick review of some of the brands I’ve tried. Dry shampoo on very dark hair like mine can be tricky. You don’t want to be left with a visible white, powdery cast. I also don’t want a dry shampoo to have a strong, overpowering scent. So here are five dry shampoos I’ve tried, from drugstore to high-end, graded from A to F. Continue reading

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High-end Lipstick Review Series Finale & Giveaway!!! [CLOSED]

Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G. Fallen from the Lipstick Tree review

Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G. Fallen from the Lipstick Tree

I’m back with the 17th and final review in my High-end Lipstick Review series! I have been testing out and comparing high-end lipsticks for just over a year now. You can check out my original post for a full explanation. As promised, I will be giving away a lipstick from the brand that scores the highest number of “Duchess Points” to a subscriber in a shade of their choice. Keep reading to see which brand will be deemed most splurge-worthy and for details about how to enter the giveaway. Continue reading

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The Most Unique Lipstick Shade

Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick

My first Bite Beauty lipstick!

Bite Beauty is a Canadian brand available exclusively through Sephora, that makes lip products made from food-grade ingredients that are “good enough to eat.” Bite lip products are handcrafted one at a time and contain natural and certified organic ingredients. I have seen such amazing reviews of this brand, and the last time I was in Sephora I swatched many of the shades wanting to try one out. I fell in love with the Luminous Creme lipstick in the shade Cava, but was disappointed that they were sold out of the shade (although that’s always a good sign a colour is popular!). I recently placed an online order and added Cava to my cart. Continue reading

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Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat

Not only is Charlotte Tilbury available in Canada now and super easy to order from their Canadian website, there was free shipping on all orders for the whole month of July. I’ve been dying to try the lip products. I love lip liners. They’re one of my favourite makeup items. The Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Re-Shape & Re-Size Lip Liner was on my wish list.

When my order arrived, I was so impressed with the packaging!

Charlotte Tilbury Packaging

Nice packaging!

I tried the shade Iconic Nude, a fairly brown nude with a 1990’s feel to it.

Charlotte Tilbury Iconic Nude Lip Cheat

Iconic Nude

Charlotte Tilbury Iconic Nude Lip Cheat

Iconic Nude

Swatch Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Iconic Nude

Iconic Nude

The Lip Cheat description says “rich, velvety lip liner glides effortlessly over the lips” and “lasts up to 6 hours.” This liner is very smooth and creamy and easy to apply. Once its on, its not going anywhere! It is really long wearing and smudge-proof. Iconic Nude would go with a lot of lip colours. You could also fill in your lips with it and top it with a bit of lip balm or gloss.

I have a lot of lip liners and I was unable to find a dupe for Iconic Nude. Here it is swatched next to some other popular nude lip liners like Too Faced Perfect Nude, and MAC Spice, Stone, and Subculture. Its a unique shade.

Swatch Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat Iconic Nude compared to Too Faced Perfect Nude, MAC Spice, MAC Stone, and MAC Subculture

Iconic Nude compared to Too Faced Perfect Nude, MAC Spice, MAC Stone, and MAC Subculture

Now I really want the shades Pillow Talk and Pink Venus! Charlotte Tilbury is seriously not helping my lip liner problem. I’m also dying to try the blushes.

The Lip Cheats are $27.00 CAD, and the CT website is entirely in Canadian dollars so no scary exchange rates. I was really happy with the shipping (which was free!) and there were no surprise additional charges.

I also ordered a lipstick which I will be reviewing soon as part of my High-end Lipstick Review Series & Giveaway, so stay tuned for that. I’d love to hear what your favourite Charlotte Tilbury product is!

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

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Filed under Lip Liner, Lips, Reviews

5 Mini Lippies: Did Samples Convince Me to Buy it or Skip it?

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss, Benefit Coralista Ultra Plush Lip Gloss, Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss, Sephora Rouge Infusion Lip Stain, Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer

Miniature Lippies are the cutest!

I love anything miniature. I couldn’t resist a post about these cute little mini lippie samples that have piled up. The best thing about getting samples of a product is you can decide for free whether its something you’d like to buy or something you’d rather skip. Here’s what I decided about these five samples.

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss in Bare Sparkle

Baby Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss in Bare Sparkle

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss in Bare Sparkle ($30.00 CAD): The first thing I didn’t like about this lip gloss was the very strong minty scent and taste. I know some people like that, but I’m not a fan. Its also super sticky! Again, some folks don’t mind a sticky lip gloss but this is another thing I’m not a fan of. It did look really pretty applied and reminded me of my favourite Rimmel Stay Glossy in Non-Stop Glamour. If you don’t mind the stickiness and the mint flavour, its a shimmery nude that you could pop over any lip liner or lipstick. But be warned – this lip gloss is nearly impossible to remove and leaves a lot of glitter behind. Plus you could pick up the Rimmel for much less. Verdict: Skip it.

Benefit Coralista Ultra Plush Lip Gloss

Baby Benefit Coralista Ultra Plush Lip Gloss

Benefit Coralista Ultra Plush Lip Gloss ($21.00 CAD): I liked the concept of the Ultra Plush glosses matching the Benefit best-selling boxed powders. I feel like the packaging was a bit disappointing though. The plastic squeeze-tube feels more drugstore than a $20+ lip product should. I don’t like applying coloured glosses out of these because I find it trickier to get a precise and even application. I also found this gloss very sheer. Maybe its the shade, but it didn’t show up on me very well. Finally, the scent of this was odd too. Instead of having a matching scent as the Coralista blush, this just had that slightly chemical, medicated lip balm smell. Verdict: Skip it.

Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss  in 202 Sweet Pink

Baby Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss #202 Sweet Pink

Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss #202 Sweet Pink ($23.00 CAD): This gloss is seriously shiny! I liked that it doesn’t have any scent and is really long-wearing. Even the sample packaging feels high-end and is real glass vs plastic. The only downside is that its a little on the sticky side. But if you like a shiny lip gloss look, the Make Up For Ever has 35 shades, super cute packaging and is more reasonably priced than the Bobbi Brown. Verdict: Buy it.

Sephora Rouge Infusion Lip Stain #10 Red Essence

Baby Sephora Rouge Infusion Lip Stain #10 Red Essence

Sephora Rouge Infusion Lip Stain #10 Red Essence ($18.00 CAD): This may literally be the worst lip product I’ve ever tried! First there’s the awful chemically-raspberry smell. Then, this stain was impossible to apply! It was so uneven, patchy and awful. It also felt really dry and uncomfortable. Just the worst. Verdict: Skip it.

Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer in Coral

Baby Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer in Coral

Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer in Coral
($28.00 CAD): This is a really neat product described as a “long-wear, lip-hybrid formula with high-impact staining pigments for color that goes on as a lacquer and then adjusts to a stain for eight hours of color.” Its more a liquid lipstick than a gloss. Its really easy to apply and goes on smoothly and evenly. Its long-wearing, wears off really pretty and leaves behind a serious stain. The lip lacquer has a slight scent of coconut and no taste. The shade, Coral, is not a great shade for me, but I would love to try some of the others, like Keepsake, a cool mauve pink or Off Duty, a nude pink brown. Verdict: Buy it.

Here are swatches of all five:

swatches Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lip Gloss Bare Sparkle, Benefit Coralista Ultra Plush Lip Gloss, Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss 202 Sweet Pink, Sephora Rouge Infusion Lip Stain Red Essence, Smashbox Be Legendary Long-Wear Lip Lacquer Coral

L-R: Bobbi Brown, Benefit, Make Up For Ever, Sephora, Smashbox

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

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High-end Lipstick Review Series: Chantecaille

Chantecaille Lip Chic

Chantecaille Lip Chic

This is the second last post in my High-end Lipstick Review Series! I have only one more lipstick left to review and then its time for me to give away the highest scoring high-end lipstick to a subscriber in a shade of their choice!

While I was in Ottawa for a conference, I visited the Rideau Centre – a fabulous shopping destination – and was delighted to discover that a Nordstrom had just recently opened, the first one in Canada. I knew the Nordstrom website carried Chantecaille and shipped to Canada through Borderfree, but would they have it in store? Yes they did! I actually got to swatch the Lip Chic shades that I’d previously only been able to obsess over online.

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

I selected the shade, Camellia, a pale, cool-toned peachy-pink. I had been on a bit of a vampy lip colour spree lately and felt like I already had a lot of darker shades, so I was in the mood for something light and summery (maybe it was the warm Ottawa weather?).

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

I would caution that Camellia is very light, and although my ghostly-white self is enjoying this shade, it likely wouldn’t show up well on people with very pigmented lips or deeper skin tones.

Swatch Chantecaille Lip Chic in Camellia

Camellia swatched

I paid $42.00 CAD in-store for the Lip Chic and was pretty psyched to not have paid any shipping costs or duty. On the Nordstrom site they’re charging $48.02 CAD plus $18.89 CAD for shipping and $10.13 CAD in duties & taxes for an astounding $77.04 CAD in total!!!

I also have to note that the Chantecaille Lip Chic is a fairly small lipstick and has less product than a MAC lipstick for example.

Chantecaille Lip Chic versus MAC lipstick

Less product: The Chantecaille Lip Chic is 2 g versus a 3 g MAC lipstick

Let’s start the review…

Packaging
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Although certainly not as flashy as some of the other high-end brands, like YSL, Dior, Armani or Guerlain for instance, I did like the Chantecaille packaging. I thought the lavender shade of the box was unique. I can appreciate a minimalist type of design. The small, gunmetalish silver tube was a little plain but still felt weighty and snapped shut very securely like a high-end lipstick should. 2/3 Duchess points

Formula
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Loved the formula of the Lip Chic! Its very rich, pushing the boundaries to almost being sticky (but isn’t sticky) its so lip-balmy and moisturizing. It contains Hyaluronic Acid and Chondroitin Sulfate which evidently hydrates your lips. The Lip Chic is sheer and very glossy compared to the Chantecaille Lip Stick I also swatched. Chantecaille describes the Lip Chic as the “perfect combination of gloss and lipstick” and I couldn’t agree more. It basically gives the effect of a lip gloss without all the stickiness and messiness of lip gloss (I am so OVER having my hair and just about everything else sticking to lip gloss). I love to fill in my lips with a nude lip liner, like MAC Subculture or Whirl, or Annabelle Demure, and top it with Camellia Lip Chic. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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Again in terms of wear its the perfect combination of gloss and lipstick. I don’t normally find lip gloss long wearing. The Lip Chic is super shiny and glossy but long wearing like a lipstick. No idea how they did that! 3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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The Lip Chic has a light vanilla scent, similar to the MAC lipsticks and no discernible taste. What more could you ask for? 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
I’ve been using it for about 3 weeks now and it has not irritated my lips at all. No Duchess points deducted

MAC Test
I like the Lip Chic as much as I like my MAC lipsticks. Neutral Duchess points

Would I pay for another one?
Here’s where it gets tricky to answer. I would love to have more of the Lip Chics in some of the other shades. If I could purchase them in-store for $42 CAD I would. The problem is, only 4 stores in the entire country carry Chantecaille and none are remotely close to where I live. Realistically, for me to purchase another Lip Chic I would be looking at ordering it online through Nordstrom, and I would NOT pay $77 CAD for another one. I’m unlikely to be re-purchasing any.

I wish I could deem the Lip Chics splurge-worthy and award them an additional Duchess point putting them in second place overall. However at $77, for me they would not be worth it. If you happen to live in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary or Vancouver where you can purchase them at Holt Renfrew or Nordstrom, I would recommend giving Chantecaille a try.
negative 1 duchess point
-1 Duchess point

 

 

Chantecaille Lip Chic Total: 10/14

 

High-end lipstick review series score chartOther reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
YSL Rouge Volupte Shine
Dior Addict Extreme
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
Rouge Bunny Rouge
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
Dolce & Gabbana
NARS Lipstick (original)
Givenchy

As always, thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

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Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette

Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette

The Tartelette palette has the prettiest ombre packaging

I’ve been eying the Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette since it came out. Matte shadows are my favourite. Last month, I had a 10% off coupon from Sephora and I knew exactly what I wanted to use it on. The Tartelette palette is $53.00 CAD, so I was pleased to not pay full price. I’ve had this for several weeks now, and I’m glad to finally be reviewing it. I haven’t had a chance to post anything recently because Nerdy Librarian Girl has been away at two different nerdy librarian conferences.

I am really happy with this palette! I love the packaging. The palette is slim and lightweight, but the case is also very sturdy plastic that stays shut securely. I would actually not be nervous to travel with this palette, which is unusual. It comes with a full mirror as well.

Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette

So many mattes!

The 12 matte shades are very pretty and wearable neutrals, that I think lean a little more towards the cool-toned side, and include a good mix of light, medium and darks. I think the shade names are cute too, which (unlike brands that go for sexually suggestive names, cough, cough *urban decay*) are more positive girl-power themed, like “Force of Nature”, “Natural Beauty”, and “Super Mom”.

I’d never tried any of the Tarte shadows before and I am impressed. They are so soft and smooth and easy to work with and blend – and mattes aren’t always the most blendable. I find the shadows long wearing too (I always use an eyeshadow primer).

Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette swatches

Tartelette swatches on fair skin

Have you tried the Tartelette palette? Leave me a comment if you love matte eye shadows too!

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

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High-end Lipstick Review Series: Dolce & Gabbana

Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick in PetalI’m back with the 15th lipstick in my High-end Lipstick Review Series! Can you believe its been that many? I’m in the home stretch now, and only have one or two more brands I’d like to include before declaring a winner. Then one of my subscribers will get a lipstick from the winning brand in a shade of their choice! So stay tuned.

This review is of the Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick. D&G only started a cosmetic line in 2009, so its relatively new. I haven’t tried anything from D&G before, except a pair of sunglasses (which I love). I ordered this lipstick online from Sephora in the shade Petal, a “neutral lilac rose” which I think is a fairly good description.
Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick in Petal

Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick in Petal

Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick in Petal

swatch Dolce & Gabbana Classic Cream Lipstick in Petal

Petal

The D&G lipsticks are $32 CAD. Let’s see how it did!

Packaging
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This didn’t really strike me as high-end packaging. The tube was plain and fairly lightweight plastic (although it did snap shut securely). I’m not a huge fan of all gold either. It really reminded me of a drugstore lipstick, like the L’Oreal Color Riche or the Milani Color Statement lipsticks. 1/3 Duchess points

Formula
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I thought the formula of this lipstick was ok. It didn’t wow me. It was a fairly traditional “lipstick” type of formula – a little thick, very opaque – and it had a bit of a matte finish. Although it felt creamy, it really accentuated any dryness on my lips. Not my favourite. 1/3 Duchess points

Wear
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I can’t fault this lipstick on wear. The traditional formula was long-wearing, but I found it a little drying on the lips. 2/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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As soon as I opened this lipstick, I was immediately struck by the scent. It smells EXACTLY like the L’Oreal Color Riche lipsticks. I’d tried the Color Riche in Fairest Nude, a beautiful shade, but I just could not get past the scent and passed it on to my sister. Its a weird, artificial scent combined with a “your grandmother’s old lipstick” type of scent. Bleck!

I also became very suspicious that overall, this lipstick is so similar to the much less expensive L’Oreal Color Riche.

L'Oreal Color Riche a dupe for the Dolce & Gabbana lipstick

Is the L’Oreal Color Riche a dupe for the D&G lipstick?

Even the pointed shape of the lipstick itself with the logo engraved just below the tip is eerily similar. After some internet research, it doesn’t seem like the two companies are affiliated. I can’t believe that these two lipsticks aren’t made in the exact same factory though.

But, back to the scent: 1/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
Despite the terrible scent and slightly drying qualities of this lipstick, I don’t believe it irritated my lips.

MAC Test
negative 1 duchess point

 

I liked this lipstick WAY less than a MAC lipstick. -1 Duchess point

Would I pay $32 CAD for another Dolce & Gabbana lipstick?
negative 1 duchess point

 

Nope! Not a chance. I think you can get the exact same lipstick (awful scent and all) at the drugstore for a quarter of the price.

Dolce & Gabbana Total Score: 3/14

high-end lipstick comparison chartWow, D&G is third last! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
YSL Rouge Volupte Shine
Dior Addict Extreme
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
Rouge Bunny Rouge
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
NARS Lipstick (original)
Givenchy

As always, thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

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Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Anna Sui Lipstick Review

Anna Sui Lip Stick V and Beauty Mirror Rose

Anna Sui Lip Stick V and “Beauty Mirror Rose” compact

I was really excited to try the Anna Sui lipstick. I was already a huge fan of the packaging after picking up the Beauty Mirror Rose compact, which I love.

If you’re not familiar with the brand, Anna Sui is an American fashion designer who began her makeup line in 1999. The Anna Sui cosmetics are all made in Japan. If you’re a sucker for packaging (like I am!) you will love the unique, elaborate, retro-inspired designs of Anna Sui makeup which is a little bit Art Nouveau, a little bit gothic, and a little bit rock n roll.

I got the Anna Sui Lip Stick V (which stands for “vivid”). The packaging reminds me of a perfume bottle! Isn’t it stunning?

Anna Sui Lipstick V 301 Beige Pink

301 Beige Pink

I have never seen such a unique lipstick, especially the star shape. At first I thought it might be difficult to apply, but it really isn’t. Plus, after a few applications, it starts to round out and apply exactly like a traditional bullet shape would.

Anna Sui Lipstick V in 301 Beige Pink

How cool is the shooting star design?

Out of the 10 available shades, I picked 301 Beige Pink, a soft, fleshy pink nude with a glossy finish. Its more cool-toned but has some undertones of peach and brown that make it really wearable and natural looking. I think this shade would suit a lot of different skin tones.

swatch Anna Sui Lipstick V in 301 Beige Pink

Beige Pink

The Lip Stick V has all kinds of ingredients like:

Fix Oil, a resinous oil ingredient that helps to create a cosmetic film leaving pigment clinging to the lips all day long. Melting Moist Oil, a revolutionary oil that melts at body temperature and provides a smooth application with an intense burst of moisture. Light Glossy Oil gives lips a beautiful shine finish, making them appear fuller and plumped. Rosa Canina Fruit Extract to moisturize and keep lips hydrated. Carthamus Tinctorius Flower (Safflower) Flower Extract to promote blood circulation.”

The formula is super luxurious and almost feels like applying a lip balm, yet its not sheer and it stays on incredibly long. The only slight downside for some people might be the scent. Its smells like rose water. Actually the scent reminds me of turkish delight (which is flavoured with rose water). I would also compare it to the scent of Benefit’s Benetint. As you probably know if you follow my blog my preference is for unscented products, but there are a few scents that I really don’t mind and actually kind of like, for example MAC and Chanel lipsticks. The Anna Sui is one of those scented lippies that I actually like! However, I will say the scent is quite strong and might not be everyone’s cup of tea. If you aren’t a big rose-scent person I would recommend giving a tester a sniff first.

The Anna Sui Lip Stick V is $29.00 CAD and is available in Canada at Shoppers Drug Mart Beauty Boutiques, The Bay (select locations only), Murale, and online through Beautylish. I am in love! I will definitely be trying out some more of the Anna Sui lipsticks in future.

Have you tried Anna Sui? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

19 Comments

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High-end Lipstick Review Series: YSL

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine

I think this was one of the high-end lipsticks I was the most excited to try. YSL lippies get raved about. I got to check them out in person at Sephora and the formula I liked best was the Rouge Volupte Shine.

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

After much swatching, I chose shade #7, Rose Infinite , described on the Sephora site as a “shady pink taupe.” I don’t think this is really taupe. Its more of a plum tone. Its a very pretty, wearable plum for fair skin.

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine No. 7 Rose Infinite

The YSL lipsticks are $39 CAD. Lets’ see how it did compared to the other lipsticks I’ve reviewed in this series.

Packaging
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How can you not love the YSL packaging? Gorgeous. The 3-D wrap-around YSL logo is really unique. I really like how each shade is easily identified by a corresponding strip of colour around the outside of the tube. The packaging is totally high-end. 3/3 Duchess points

Formula
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The Rouge Volupte Shine is exactly the type of formula I love too. It feels like applying lip balm. Its so luxurious and hydrating and feels amazing. Its a little sheer, yet pigmented, and has a beautiful shine. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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For a sheer, balmy lipstick, this is crazy long-wearing! It leaves a deep stain behind as it wears off.  3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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This is where YSL lost points for me. It has a strong, fake watermelon scent that reminds me of the scent of the Milani lipsticks. I’m not a fan. The scent fades quickly enough, but there is a slight taste. I would have preferred if this was unscented. 1/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity
Despite the added fragrance, it hasn’t irritated my lips at all, so no Duchess points deducted.

MAC Test
I would say, fragrance aside, I like the YSL as much as MAC. Neutral Duchess points

Would I pay $39 CAD for another one?
Yes. My only dislike with this lipstick is the scent, which I think some people really like (its a preference thing). I think the formula and packaging make it worth the splurge.

YSL Rouge Volupte Shine Total: 11/14

high-end lipstick chart 02

At the end of this series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Dior Addict Extreme
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
Rouge Bunny Rouge
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
NARS Lipstick (original)
Givenchy

As always, thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl<3

17 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

What Would You Like to Pick Up at the Sephora VIB Sale?

Sephora VIB Sale

Its the VIB Sale at Sephora!

Hi everyone! I took advantage of the 15% off VIB Rouge discount to order a few things today. I re-ordered some favourites, the Guerain Maxi Lash Mascara, the Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara, and my favourite perfume, Issey Miyake. I love getting it in the rollerball form because its so easy to apply and to travel with.

I’d purchased a WEN On the Go Travel Kit and really liked the Sweet Almond Mint Replenishing Treatment, but the full-size is fairly pricey ($41 CAD), so I’m glad I could get this on sale.

I also got two lipsticks to review for my ongoing High-end Lipstick Review series, Dolce & Gabbana and YSL. Can’t wait to review these!

How about you? Are you taking advantage of the VIB sale?

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

11 Comments

Filed under Eyes, Favourites, Health & Skincare, Lips, Lipstick, Mascara

Mini-Review: Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara

Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara

gift with purchase

Hi everyone! This is just a quick review of the Estee Lauder Sumptuous Bold Volume Lifting Mascara. I received this sample sized mascara a while back as a gift with purchase when I picked up some EsteeLauder lipsticks. I’ve used up my favourite Guerlain Maxi Lash and I’m waiting for the Sephora VIB Rouge sale (which starts tomorrow!) to purchase another one, so I’ve been trying out the Estee Lauder.

FYI – the full size looks like this:

Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara

Full-sized Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara ($29 CAD)

I am not a fan of this mascara. The brush is way too big and the bristles are thick and close together. I can’t apply it without getting mascara on my eyelids. #hoodedlidproblems

Estee Lauder Sumptuous Mascara wand

Sumptuous Mascara wand – a ginormous, bristle brush

It also flakes off like crazy! By the end of the day I have all kinds of little black flakes under my eyes and on my cheeks. Total deal breaker for me when it comes to mascara. I haven’t tried any of the other Estee Lauder mascaras (they have 10 of them!) but I am a huge fan of their Pure Color Envy Lipstick.

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

9 Comments

Filed under Eyes, Mascara, Reviews

High End Lipstick Review Series: Rouge Bunny Rouge

Rouge Bunny Rouge Succulence of Dew Lipstick

Rouge Bunny Rouge Succulence of Dew Sheer Lipstick

I recently ordered some Rouge Bunny Rouge products from the UK, and you can check out my previous post for reviews and swatches of the Long Lasting Lip Pencil, Original Sin Blush, and Long-lasting Eye Shadow.

The Succulence of Dew Sheer Lipsticks are 23.53 EUR (about $33 CAD).
The RBR site ships internationally for 5 EUR (about $7 CAD), but I ended up owing an additional $30.94 CAD in customs fees for the four items. So really the lipstick ended up costing closer to $47.75 CAD.

The description of the Succulence of Dew Sheer Lipsticks fr0m the RBR site:

“The easy glide, weightless formula with moisturising, lip-shaping and skin-protecting benefits comes in five delicate yet rich colours with an outstandingly sheer, glossy finish. The precise application and perfect coverage of this texture create a polished look effortlessly.

With Hilurlip, an innovative moisturising, anti-aging and skin-protecting Sodium Hyaluronate based agent, lips are redefined, their volume is boosted, and fine vertical lines are minimised while fighting the negative effects of free radicals. Our Sheer Lipstick formula is also infused with nourishing Rosehip Butter, a natural powerhouse of essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals.

Transparent, juicy colour of a lip stain, wet-look finish of a gloss. Free from parabens and fragrance.”

I ordered the shade, Murmurings, a pinkish-burgundy toned brown which definitely has a 1990s/Marsala feel to it.

swatch Rouge Bunny Rouge Murmurings

Rouge Bunny Rouge Murmurings

Packaging
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I love the whole theme of the RBR product names and packaging, and the lipstick is no exception. This lipstick “is inspired by the translucently delicate butterflies from the Enchanted Garden.” 🙂 I love black for lipstick packaging, and it has these subtle, black-on-black butterfly-esque shapes on it as well. The weighty, substantial tube closes very securely. I also love the RBR logo, which is on the top of the cap. 3/3 Duchess points

Formula
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I really like this formula! Its very moisturizing and comfortable to wear. Its pigmented yet has that sheerness and slightly glossy finish that I prefer. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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I like it best over the RBR Long Lasting Lip Pencil (I ordered Roald). I think they pair really well together and I would totally recommend getting them both. The lip pencil is very long-wearing and almost feels sticky or tacky, but when you add the hydrating, glossy lipstick over it, its the perfect combination and stays on for hours. On its own, the lipstick applies more sheerly and isn’t’ as long-wearing as when you pair it with the lip pencil. 2/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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The RBR site claims these are fragrance free, but it has quite a strong scent I, at first, couldn’t place. Then I suddenly realized it smells exactly like tea!  The scent could be from the Rosa Canina Fruit Oil or the Linalool (a liquid with a sweet odour that naturally occurs in many essential oils), plus “Aroma (Flavour)” is also listed as an ingredient. Not exactly fragrance free RBR! It doesn’t have a noticeable taste, but I would have preferred it without the scent. It wasn’t so bad that it turned me off from wearing it, but its an unusual scent for a makeup product. 2/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
I’ve been testing this one diligently for the past couple of weeks now just to be sure, but I have not had any reaction or irritation from this lipstick. No Duchess points deduction.

MAC Test
This was tough. I liked the formula a lot (as much as or more than some MAC finishes actually) but really disliked the scent of this lipstick. I didn’t want to deduct a whole Duchess point so I am going with, scent aside, I like it as much as MAC. Neutral Duchess points

Would I pay $47.75 CAD for another one?
negative 1 duchess point

 

Because this brand isn’t available in Canada, with the exchange rate, shipping and customs, I just would not be interested in paying nearly $48 for another RBR lipstick. -1 Duchess points

Rouge Bunny Rouge Sheer Lipstick total: 9/14

high-end-lipstick-comparison-chart

At the end of this series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Dior Addict Extreme
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
NARS Lipstick (original)
Givenchy

As always, thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl<3

16 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Rouge Bunny Rouge Unboxing and First Impressions

My first time ordering from Rouge Bunny Rouge

My first time ordering from Rouge Bunny Rouge

I was inspired to checkout Rouge Bunny Rouge by Shameless Fripperies post on the new, reformulated lipsticks. I’d never tried anything from the brand, but soon discovered the Rouge Bunny Rouge UK site ships internationally for only 5 EUR. Shipping to Canada took just 12 days and everything arrived in perfect condition, but I did end up owing an additional $30.94 CAD in customs fees.

A relatively new brand, Rouge Bunny Rouge (RBR) began in 2006 in Moscow, and is now described as “Moscow-London based.” RBR is cruelty-free and doesn’t test on animals. Their makeup is manufactured within the EU, and isn’t sold in any countries where animal testing is required by law (source). What I really liked about the brand is the unique and over-the-top cute packaging and product names.

I really wanted to try one of the Long Lasting Lip Pencils (22 EUR or $30 CAD), because I’d read really great reviews on them. I’m a total lip pencil junkie! I picked Roald, which was described as “pure matte, pale mauve. Best suited for pale, bluish toned complexions.” I think this might be my favourite item that I ordered. Its such a creamy, easy to apply lip pencil but its also very long-wearing. This shade is perfection! I love this lip pencil with the Succulence of Dew lipstick I ordered, but I will be reviewing the lipstick separately as part of my High-end Lipstick Review Series.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long Lasting Lip Pencil in Roald

Long-Lasting Lip Pencil in Roald

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long-lasting Lip Color in Roald

Long-lasting Lip Pencil in Roald

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long-lasting Lip Color Roald Swatch

Roald

I also got one of the Original Sin Blushes in Delicata (31 EUR or $41 CAD), described as “nude beige-rose with the barest hint of peach.” This is a very neutral beigey type of blush, similar to MAC Prism (one of my favs). The packaging is adorable.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Original Skin Blush

Original Skin Blush

Rouge Bunny Rouge Original Skin Blush in Delicata

Original Skin Blush in Delicata

Swatch Rouge Bunny Rouge Original Skin Blush Delicata

Original Skin Blush in Delicata

I’ve used this blush 3-4 times now and quite like it. Its very natural and very light, making it a great blush for fair skin. Its mostly matte with a little bit of a soft, satiny glow to it. It wears well too – similar to the wear I get from a MAC blush. I would say though, that for the price you don’t get a ton of product: 3.5 g VS a 6 g MAC blush. The RBR blush was about $41 CAD with the exchange rate, and a MAC blush is $26 CAD. The RBR is a nice blush, but I feel like there are lots of lower priced alternatives (like NYX or MUG) that are just as good.

I also wanted to try out one of the When Birds are Singing… Long Lasting Eye Shadows (24 EUR or $32 CAD), and picked the shade Rufous-tailed Weaver, described as “medium taupe with bronze-gold highlights.” I love that each of the shades are named after birds! Again, this packaging is beyond adorable.

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long-lasting Eye Shadow

Long-lasting Eye Shadow

Rouge Bunny Rouge Long-lasting Eye Shadow in Rufous-tailed Weaver

Long-lasting Eye Shadow in Rufous-tailed Weaver

swatch long-lasting eye shadow in Rufous-tailed Weaver

Rufous-tailed Weaver

This shade is undeniably pretty, but I immediately felt like it was also fairly dupe-able. I think I’ll go through my collection to see what shades are similar to this, but if you’re someone like me who has a lot of neutrals and taupes, you more than likely have something similar to Rufous-tailed Weaver already.

I was seriously unimpressed with the staying power of this eyeshadow. Even with primer, it creased on me and didn’t stay put even to the end of my work day. It only claims “8-hour wear”, which doesn’t seem overly long for a “Long Lasting Eye Shadow.” I’m really surprised because a lot of people really like these. I’m not inspired to order more of the RBR eye shadows 😦

I received two unexpected free samples, which was nice, a Loose Glitter Pigment Fire Drops in Embrace of Cashmere and a Highlighting Liquid Seas of Illumination in Sea of Clouds sample.

Loose Glitter Pigment Fire Drops in Embrace of Cashmere and Highlighting Liquid Seas of Illumination in Sea of Clouds

Free samples: Loose Glitter Pigment Fire Drops in Embrace of Cashmere and Highlighting Liquid Seas of Illumination in Sea of Clouds

Swatches: Loose Glitter Pigment Fire Drops in Embrace of Cashmere and Highlighting Liquid Seas of Illumination in Sea of Clouds

Swatches: Highlighting Liquid Seas of Illumination in Sea of Clouds and Loose Glitter Pigment Fire Drops in Embrace of Cashmere

The Embrace of Cashmere Loose Glitter Pigment swatched very similarly to the Rufous-tailed Weaver shade. I don’t have any loose eye shadow pigments because I’m actually kind of scared of them and don’t really know how you’re supposed to use them, lol, so I haven’t tried this out yet.

The Highlighting Liquid is very heavily scented, reminding me of a perfumed hand lotion. I had read that the RBR liquid foundation is scented as well. I’m not a fan of the scent and can’t imagine using this on my face. Luckily the powder products and lip pencil were not scented.

Overall I had some hits (lip pencil and blush) and one miss (eye shadow). Stay tuned for my full review of the Succulence of Dew Sheer Lipstick!

Have you tried Rouge Bunny Rouge? What are your favourite products?

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

8 Comments

Filed under Cheeks, Eyes, Eyeshadow, Face, Lip Liner, Lips, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Dior Addict Extreme

Dior Addict Extreme Lipstick

Dior Addict Extreme Lipstick

Ok guys, its time for the Dior review! I was so excited to try the Dior lipsticks because I have heard so many people rave about them and include them in their favourites. The Dior Addict lipsticks and glosses seem to be very popular! I got to swatch these in person, and although I initially thought I would try the original Dior Addict Lipstick, I was totally drawn to the colour selection of the Dior Addict Extreme more, especially the shade 866 Paparazzi. Although every time I use it I get the song stuck in my head…
paparazzi
Paparazzi is a bright, pinky-berry shade. Its very different than any other lipstick shade I have – I must have been in the oddest mood that day! On me, I get a lot of the pink/fushia undertones coming through as I have quite a bit of pink in my lips naturally. I find pairing this shade with a brown-toned lip liner underneath (like MAC Spice for example) gives me the best effect – more of a deeper, berry tone.

Dior Addict Extreme in 866 Paparazzi

Dior Addict Extreme in 866 Paparazzi

Dior Addict Extreme 866 Paparazzi swatch

Dior Addict Extreme in 866 Paparazzi

What’s the difference between the Dior Addict and the Dior Addict Extreme? When I was swatching them, the formulas seemed very similar and both had a similar amount of shine. Here’s Dior’s explanation:

Dior Addict: “hydrating and volumizing formula dresses lips with a veil of addicting color and spectacular shine.”

Dior Addict Extreme: “extremely long-wearing lipstick that provides radiant shine…resisting fading while adding bold color and beautiful shine…formula combines waxes, radiant oils, and hyaluronic microspheres for ultimate comfort and a lip-plumping effect.”

Here’s what I thought of the Dior Addict Extreme:

Packaging
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I really preferred the dramatic Dior Addict Extreme with its jet black cap (VS the original transparenty sort of cap). I just love black 🙂 I also love the silver tube, which I prefer over gold. Initially I thought the design, where you pull the lipstick out of the square cap was kind of different and neat, but after using it a few times, I realized how impractical it actually is.

It lost a Duchess point because the lipstick, once pulled out of the square cap, cannot be put down. The bottom is a round knob, so you can’t stand it up like most lipsticks. I swiveled the lipstick down and tried laying it on its side. It rolled away! So the design, while attractive, is very annoying. 2/3 Duchess points

Formula
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This lipstick has the sort of formula I really like: glossy, a little bit of sheerness to it but still good colour pay-off, and very comfortable and hydrating on the lips. I couldn’t give it full points on formula, because compared to some of the other high-end lippies I’ve reviewed, the Dior Addict Extreme felt a little bit “slippery” on the lips. Its an odd texture, like its a little too siliconey or waxy? I couldn’t find an ingredients list anywhere so I’m not sure. 2/3 Duchess points

Wear
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This lipstick rivaled the Armani Rouge Ecstasy in terms of wear. It is without a doubt very long-wearing, which is amazing for a glossy, hydrating lipstick. This lasted forever on me, even through eating and drinking. Like the Armani, it also wore off very nicely, leaving behind a flattering stain. 3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste

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This has absolutely no discernible scent or taste whatsoever, which is what I like in a lipstick! 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
I have used this lipstick everyday for over two weeks now and I have had no reaction at all. It hasn’t dried out or irritated my lips. (neutral Duchess points)

MAC Test
I like this lipstick the same as MAC, mainly because of the crazy staying power, the great shades, and the fact that its unscented. (neutral Duchess points)

Would I pay $34 CAD for another one?
Yes. For sure. I do really enjoy this lipstick. I think its a pretty formula and I love how long-wearing it is and that its unscented. There are so many more shades that I’d like to try! I can understand why a lot of people love the Dior Addict line and I think it is worth the splurge.

Dior Addict Extreme total: 11/14

high-end lipstick comparisonAt the end of this series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
NARS Lipstick (original)
Givenchy

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

 

12 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Instant Disqualification

Givenchy Lipsticks

Givenchy Lipsticks

As I mentioned in my review of Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy lipstick, I recently had an in-store Sephora shopping experience (there isn’t one where I live) to check out high-end lippies. I was considering reviewing Givenchy next, but after examining them in person I literally couldn’t even bring myself to try one, especially not at $38 CAD.

So, what turned me off? Lets start with the Givenchy Le Rouge, “a semimatte lipstick encased in genuine leather.” I just can’t get on board the matte lipstick train. I have disliked every matte lipstick I’ve ever tried. They’re just not for me. Then there was the ominously black Rouge Interdit Magic Lipstick: “Its pigments react with the skin’s pH, thus its color evolves differently on each woman.” Mood lipstick? Yeah I NEVER have any luck with these types of products that “magically adjust” to your *perfect* shade. Lips in an unpredictable shade of hot fushia for $38? Um no thanks.

The Rouge Interdit Satin Lipstick seemed like a possibility until I gave the testers the sniff test. Holy cow the Givenchy lipsticks smell terrible!!! The Rouge Interdit have a strong, old-fashioned makeupy scent that some people might call the “old lady lipstick smell.” The Le Rouge are evidently and inexplicably “mimosa and blackcurrant” scented, so you can imagine. And if the off-putting scents weren’t all bad enough, then there was the packaging.

I apologize to any Givenchy devotees out there, but the packaging of the lipsticks is not my cup of tea. The packaging felt light-weight, plasticy and cheap. The Le Rouge, billed as a “genuine leather goods item” and “lipstick-as-accessory” looked clunky and let’s just say that sure wasn’t very soft luxurious leather I was feeling. The Rouge Interdit have this weird loop of stiff, scratchy fabric on the bottom that serves no purpose. Advertised as a “fashion accessory” and “objet d’art” this lipstick ironically had zero visual appeal for me. To be perfectly honest, both looked kinda tacky, IMO.

So I’m officially disqualifying Givenchy from my high-end lipstick review series. Worth a re-purchase? These didn’t even get an initial purchase.

Could I be totally wrong about these? Has anyone tried the Givenchy lipsticks, and if so, what did you think?

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

17 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy

Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipstick

Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipstick

Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy in 600 Mania

Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy in 600 Mania

I’m back with another contender in my ongoing High-end lipstick review series. I picked up one of the Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy lipsticks at Sephora while I was in Toronto a few weeks ago. It was great to actually be in the store and be able to swatch and try on (carefully disinfected!) shades since there are 36 to choose from and Eaton’s Centre Sephora seemed to have almost all of them. Seriously, the colour selection is intense.

After much hemming and hawing, I kept coming back to #600, Mania, a beautiful, not-overly-vampy, rich plum. It was super sunny when I photographed the lipstick so the bullet looks lighter than it is, but the swatch is fairly true to colour:

swatch giorgio armani rouge ecstasy 600 mania

Mania swatches and applies much darker than it appears in the bullet

The Rouge Ecstasy is a “CC” lipstick, with the CC standing for “Color & Care.” The Armani site explains:

  • Care: Rouge Ecstasy offers the comfort and softness of a lip balm, leaving lips repaired and beautifully enhanced day after day.
  • Color: This velvety soft, everyday lipstick coats the lips in saturated, ultra-luminous shades with impeccable hold. Application is simple, precise and effective.

I have to say that I completely agree with the product description. Lets see how the Armani Rouge Ecstasy compared to the other high-end lippies in our series.

Packaging
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Initially I was on the fence about the design and colour choice. It certainly isn’t subtle and it might not be for everyone. But the red and black did start to grow on me after a while. I also liked that it was weighty and substantial and has the magnetic closure. The little silver Art Deco “GA” embellishment and similar engraving on the lipstick was a nice touch too. 2/3 Duchess points

Formula
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Loved, loved loved the formula! This is my perfect kind of lipstick: slightly sheer and luminous, hint of glossiness, weightless feel, hydrating, smooth and even application – perfection! The Armani has the elusive quality of giving lots of colour in one swipe combined with a sheerness that still lets your own lips come through, the way a great foundation will give coverage without wiping out any trace of your own natural skin  (I dislike a thick opaque lipstick the way I dislike a heavy, matte full-coverage foundation). I would describe the finish of the Armani lipstick in 2 words: youthful and yummy. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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This lipstick wears better than any other lipstick I have ever tried, EVER. It isn’t drying at all – it feels moisturizing and balmy – yet it stays on for hours. The best part is that it also wears off so nicely. Even with a darker shade like this, it wears off completely evenly AND leaves behind a flattering stain. I wish I had more Duchess points to give. 3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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This is where the Armani let me down a little. After a peek at the ingredients list, there doesn’t seem to be any added fragrance (yay!), but the lipstick does have a faint “makeupy”  type of smell. Luckily, it isn’t overpowering and there isn’t any noticeable taste so I didn’t have to deduct too many points. 2/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
Totally passed! No irritation from this lipstick at all. (neutral Duchess points)

MAC Test
I was so close to liking this one more than my MAC lipsticks. I think the two things that hold it back are the packaging and the scent. Although I love the formula, overall I liked it about the same as MAC. (neutral Duchess points)

Would I pay $39 CAD for another one?
duchess point

 

Yes, I would. I think the Armani Rouge Ecstasy is a high-end lipstick worthy of the splurge. 1/1 Duchess points

Giorgio Armani Rouge Ecstasy total: 11/14

The Armani tied for second place with Guerlain and Estee Lauder.

High-End Lipstick Comparisons Chart

I am having such a fun time doing this series! I have lots more that I want to try and review, including brands like Dior, YSL, Rouge Bunny Rouge, and many others, so there will be plenty more posts in this series over the coming months. But when I wrap it up I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)!

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
Burberry Lip Cover
NARS Lipstick (original)

Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Thanks for reading
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

11 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Burberry

Burberry Lip Cover

Burberry Lip Cover Soft Satin Lipstick

Burberry makeup isn’t sold in Canada except for a few select Burberry Stores in Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. I visited the Toronto Burberry Store on Bloor Street and they had very little makeup in stock. The only other way to buy Burberry makeup is online from Saks Fifth Avenue where a Burberry lipstick will set you back $41.45 CAD plus $18.32 shipping* and $7.85 “duties & taxes” for a whopping total of $67.62 CAD!

*free shipping is offered on orders of $100+

Burberry Lip Cover No.23 English Rose

Burberry Lip Cover No.23 English Rose

I was actually able to pick up this lipstick while I was in England at the Burberry Store on Regent Street for 22 pounds 50, which is roughly $41 CAD. I had a lovely experience shopping there. I was really drawn to shade No. 23, English Rose, sort of a neutral, rosy pink with brown undertones.

Burberry Lip Cover No.23 English Rose

Burberry Lip Cover No.23 English Rose

Swatch: Burberry Lip Cover No.23 English Rose

English Rose swatched

Packaging
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Burberry, like Tom Ford or Chanel, has totally nailed high-end packaging. The substantial, square silver tube engraved with the classic Burberry pattern is gorgeous. It has the magnetic closure too. I also love that the lipstick itself has the Burberry diamond check pattern. 3/3 Duchess points

Formula

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I liked the formula of this lipstick. Is not my favourite of all time or anything, but I do like it. Its quite creamy and feels very comfortable on the lips. I found it a bit opaque and it almost had a heavy, traditional “lipstick” sort of formula if you know what I mean, but overall not bad. 2/3 Duchess points.

Wear
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I kind of feel the same way about the wear as I do the formula – its ok. Not my favourite, but not the worst either. It stays on well, but has a tendency to wear off a little unevenly and unflatteringly. Its one of those lipsticks that can gather around the inside corners of your lips. At least on me it does. 1/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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The scent of a lipstick has such a big impact on whether or not I enjoy it. I generally just prefer unscented lip products. I’m not a big fan of the scent of the Burberry lipstick. I was actually really shocked to discover it has that old-fashioned “makeupy” smell like your grandmother’s makeup would have. Not exactly what I was expecting from Burberry. Even less enjoyable is that it also has a bit of an old-fashioned soapy taste when first applied. 1/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
Despite the icky scent/taste, I don’t believe the Burberry has irritated my lips at all. I haven’t had any sort of reaction to it. (Neutral Duchess points)

MAC Test
negative 1 duchess point

 

I definitely don’t like this lipstick as much as my MAC lipsticks. -1 Duchess point

Would I pay $42+ CAD for another one?
negative 1 duchess point

 

Especially considering the shipping and duties/taxes I’d have to pay to even order another Burberry lipstick, I have to go with no. I am not in love with this lipstick, mostly due to the scent, but also the formula. -1 Duchess point

Burberry Lip Cover Soft Satin Lipstick total: 5/14

high-end lipsticks comparison

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the end of the series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
Tom Ford Lip Color
NARS Lipstick (original)

Thanks for reading
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

17 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-End Lipstick Review Series: Tom Ford

Tom Ford Lip Color Spanish Pink

Tom Ford Lip Color

Oh has there ever been a lipstick as hyped as Tom Ford? It seemed like people just went bananas over them when they first came out. The fact that I couldn’t get them in Canada made them seem even more elusive and desirable, so while on a trip to England last year, I couldn’t resist picking one up. Its still practically impossible to buy Tom Ford makeup in Canada except for a few select Holt Renfrew stores, where they retail for an almost unbelievable $55 CAD.

I got the shade Spanish Pink, which I think really shouldn’t have “pink” in the name because this shade is more of a peachy coral and looks very peach on me. Its one of those Bridget Bardot 1960s type of shades that I really, really want to work on me, but honestly, its not the best colour for me 😦

Tom Ford Lip Color in Spanish Pink

Tom Ford Lip Color in “Spanish Pink”

Tom Ford Lip Color Spanish Pink Swatch

“Spanish Pink” Swatch

Let’s see how Tom Ford Lip Color does in my high-end lipstick comparison series…

Packaging
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Spectacularly luxurious. The heavy square tube, the black and gold – Its definitely one glamorous looking lipstick. I love the little “TF” engraved in the top of the lipstick itself. The Tom Ford packaging is up there with Chanel or Guerlain in fully living up to all of your expectations of a high-end lipstick. 3/3 Duchess points

Formula
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The Tom Ford lipstick doesn’t have the type of formula that I typically like. Although it claims to have “Rare and exotic ingredients, including soja seed extract, Brazilian murumuru butter and chamomilla flower oil” to “create an ultra-creamy texture”, its not a hydrating lipstick. I find it drying to wear. There’s also something about the finish that I’m not a fan of. Maybe its too matte for me or too opaque? It doesn’t make my lips look “yummy”. Every time I dig this out I think, I’m going to like this lipstick this time…but it just never happens. 1/3 Duchess points

Wear
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This lipstick does stay on well but isn’t the most comfortable to wear. I always feel like I want to apply lip balm after I’ve had it on a while. 2/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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To me, the Tom Ford lipstick smells almost identical to a MAC lipstick. It has that light vanilla scent. 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity Test
Besides drying them out a bit, I don’t think this lipstick has irritated my lips at all. I haven’t had any reaction to it, so no Duchess points deducted.

MAC Test
negative 1 duchess point

 

I definitely do not like this lipstick as much as MAC, so it gets the scary negative Duchess point!

Would I pay $55 CAD for another one?
negative 1 duchess point

 

Nope. Another scary negative Duchess point!

Tom Ford Lip Color Total: 7/14

high-end lipstick review chart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the end of the series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Rouge G de Guerlain
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
NARS Lipstick (original)

Thanks for reading
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

17 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Pressed Powder VS Original Microfinish Powder

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Pressed Powder

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Pressed Powder

I love the original MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder. The translucent finishing powder has been one of my most repurchased products. I use it every day with my Real Techniques setting brush for setting under-eye concealer.

I’ve been super curious about the HD pressed powder ever since it came out earlier this year but it retails for $41 CAD! The 0.14 oz mini size of the original loose powder I normally buy is just $22 CAD and lasts me at least 6 months or so. The new HD pressed powder was the other item I ordered with my Sephora VIB Rouge $25 off discount (the other being the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer).

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD original Microfinish Powder VS the new Pressed Powder

MAKE UP FOR EVER HD original Microfinish Powder VS the new Pressed Powder

The only thing I don’t like about the original powder is that its a loose powder. Because its such ultrafine silica its very “floofey” (which I believe is the highly scientific term). It flies up a lot when you dip your brush in it, and also when you’re applying it. I’ve gotten a big poof of it right in the eyeball on many a morning. Its also a bit of a pain to travel with.

So I have to admit I love the pressed powder. I’ve been using it about a month now and it performs exactly the same as the original, just without all the floofiness. I love that I can put the mirrored compact in my purse and use it as a touch-up powder, which was never a practical option with the original.

Now for the negatives. The first one is that the original HD powder is 100% mineral silica. The pressed powder contains 15 additional ingredients including other natural and synthetic minerals, preservatives, and hyaluronic acid. If I have the option to use a product that performs just as well but doesn’t have all the extra unpronounceable ingredients, I think I’d like to stick with the original.

The other downside is that the pressed powder is more expensive. You are paying more for less product. Here’s the price breakdown:
Original Loose       Pressed
0.14 oz – $22                 0.07 oz – $26
0.3 oz  – $39                   0.21 oz – $41

What do you think? Would you pay more for a pressed version in a mirrored compact? Do the extra ingredients bother you?

I do like the pressed powder and will use it up, but I don’t think I’ll be repurchasing. I will go back to the original loose microfinishing powder.

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

3 Comments

Filed under Face, Reviews

Review: NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in "Chantilly"

NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in “Chantilly”

It seems like everyone has just been raving about the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer lately. So when Sephora sent me a VIB Rouge $25 gift card to redeem in December, I thought it might be a good time to try it out. At $35 CAD, its a bit of a pricey concealer.

I ordered the lightest shade (as I would do with any product) which is Chantilly “true ivory for fairest complexions.” It is very light! Finding a concealer or highlighter lighter than my skintone is not easy, but Chantilly definitely is.

swatch NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer ChantillyRight away, the thing that I was not a huge fan of is the doe-foot applicator. I guess I’m just used to a more traditional concealer in a pot, or a highlighter with a clickable brush (like my fav L’Oreal Magic Lumi Concealer). Its odd to use a concealer that  looks like a lipgloss.
NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer ChantillyI tried using this concealer 3 ways:

  1. as an under-eye concealer
  2. as a highlighter/brightener
  3. over blemishes

How did it do…

as an under-eye concealer?
I’m VERY picky about under-eye concealers and it took me a long time to find my current fav, Laura Mercier Secret Concealer. I have dry skin, especially around my eyes, and most concealers will look cakey and/or crease. The Laura Mercier topped with MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder does not crease on me or settle into any little fine lines and stays put until I remove it. Unfortunately, the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer did not. It accentuated any dryness and it creased on me. A lot. I would definitely not use this as an under-eye concealer.

as a highlighter/brightener?
After I apply my Laura Mercier, I use the L’Oreal Magic Lumi just below my under-eye area (which can be a little bit puffy). I put the highlighter in the slight “crease” that I have beneath my under-eye “bag” (for lack of a better word – lol, its not really that much of a bag). I find this brightens my under-eye area. For visuals, see gossmakeupartist’s YouTube video How To: Make Eye Bags Vanish in Seconds.

I did find the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer worked pretty well for this, especially because its so light. However, my $12.99 CAD L’Oreal Magic Lumi does just as good a job.

over blemishes?
I did try using this to conceal a blemish I got over Christmas, when its really, really hard to completely avoid gluten (stuffing! gingerbread cookies! gravy!). Gluten wreaks total havoc on my skin. Anyway, I wasn’t that fussy over it as a blemish concealer either. First of all, the shade Chantilly – which I chose intending to use as an under-eye concealer/brightener – was too bright for blemishes. A darker shade might work better, but honestly it was kind of sheer and luminous; Not ideal for concealing a spot. It took several coats, plus it didn’t hold up that well over the day. Thumbs down.

Sadly, the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer just didn’t work out for me. I’m glad I had the discount to use towards it. I don’t think its worth all the hype.

What do you think? Have you tried it? And do you love it or hate it?

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl

6 Comments

Filed under Concealer, Face, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: Rouge G de Guerlain

Rouge G de Guerlain Jewel Lipstick in 15 "Galiane"

Rouge G de Guerlain Jewel Lipstick in 15 “Galiane”

This is the seventh lipstick in my High-end Lipstick Review Series! I picked up this lipstick during a Las Vegas shopping trip this summer in the actual Guerlain Store in the Grand Canal Shoppes in the Venetian. I chose the shade Galiane, a warm nudey-pinky-beige. It’s a very wearable “my lips but better” type of shade.

In Canada, Guerlain is online through The Bay and Sephora. The Rouge G de Guerlain jewel lipsticks are $53 CAD. Galiane isn’t available on the Canadian Sephora site, but is available on the Nordstrom site which ships to Canada (but it sells for $62.04 CAD on there!).

Swatch: Rouge G de Guerlain in 15 Galiane

Rouge G de Guerlain in 15 “Galiane”

Here’s how the Rouge G de Guerlain did:

Packaging
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I wish I could give this even more than 3/3 Duchess points!!! I really don’t know how lipstick packaging could get any fancier or more high-end than this “luxury jewellery lipstick”. I love the silver metal case – it weighs a ton. And the magnetic cap pops open to reveal a mirror! It looks so fancy to take out of your purse to re-apply. I don’t have any other lipsticks that even compare to this one.

Formula
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Here’s how Guerlain describes it: “a subtle balance of intense colour and the comforting pleasure of a creamy lip balm…the unique combination of ruby powder for spectacular radiance, hyaluronic acid spheres for perfectly smoothed lips and wild mango butter for lasting hydration.” Those are some fancy (i.e expensive) ingredients! Ruby powder? An ingredients check revealed its synthetic ruby powder, which the Patents site says is “excellent in the effects of covering wrinkles and roughness in the skin”, has “a texture close to the skin in optical deepness”, and photographs well.

I love the formula, which I found creamy, slightly glossy, very hydrating, and it really doesn’t settle into any lines or emphasize any dryness at all. It reminds me a lot of MAC’s Lustre finish, which is my favourite, and like the Chanel Rouge Coco Shine I could apply it in lieu of lip balm. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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Because this lipstick is glossy and a bit on the sheer side (which looks really pretty) it isn’t the most long-wearing of lipsticks. You do have to re-apply more frequently than with some other lipsticks. 2/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste

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According to Guerlain, its the “light, delicate scent of a vanilla “floriental”…Top notes sparkle with a lemon, orange and bergamot accord. The rose and iris heart exudes sweetness.” Whoa. After all that you’d think this lipstick would be perfumey as all heck, but it actually isn’t. To me it has a slightly old fashioned lipstickey smell that isn’t too bothersome but that I could take or leave. 2/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity
I have used this lipstick quite a lot and have never had any reaction to it. Passes the sensitivity test! neutral Duchess points

MAC Test
I like this lipstick as much as MAC for sure. Like I said, its very similar to the MAC lustre lipsticks. neutral Duchess points

Would I pay $53 for another one?
duchess point

 

This is a tricky one. My initial response is “YES!!! ONE IN EVERY COLOUR!” But then my more practical side says, “calm down, you don’t need $50 lipsticks crazy lady.” This lipstick is a real splurge, and I definitely think its worth the splurge, just maybe not more than once 🙂 But who knows…I actually would really like to try out some more of the Guerlain lipsticks like the KissKiss and the Rouge Automatique. If you do have some extra money to play with, I really don’t think this luxurious, stunningly packaged lipstick would disappoint. 1 Duchess point

Rouge G de Guerlain total: 11/14 (totally splurge-worthy!)

high-end lipsticks comparison chart

At the end of the series, I’m going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

Other reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
NARS Lipstick (original)

Thanks for reading
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

18 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-End Lipstick Review Series: Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy in 440 "Irresistible"

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy in 440 “Irresistible”

In this installment of my High-End Lipstick Review series, we’ll be reviewing Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick which retails for $34 CAD. Here’s a few ways Estee Lauder describes this lipstick:

  • Saturates lips with high-intensity color in one stroke
  • Time-released Moisture Complex helps capture and seal-in hydration
  • Lips feel continuously moisturized throughout the day
  • Super creamy, glides on effortlessly, covers evenly

I chose the shade 440 Irresistible, a rosy pinky-brown.

Estee Lauder "Irresistible" swatch

Estee Lauder “Irresistible” swatch

Here’s my ranking of the Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick:

Packaging
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The reason why I scored this lipstick so low on packaging can be summed up in one word: navy. I just don’t associate this colour with glamour or luxury or chicness. It reminds me of the colour of a uniform. Other than the drab, matronly shade, the packaging otherwise feels quite high-end. Its heavy and substantial with a magnetic closure. I think the colour choice is totally subjective and others may love it but, for me, it just doesn’t have that “wow” factor. 1/3 Duchess points

Formula
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Once I got past the packaging, I have to admit I fell in love with the formula of this lipstick. I have to agree, it does have “high-intensity color in one stroke” combined with being very moisturizing, even hours after you’ve applied it. “Super creamy, glides on effortlessly, covers evenly” is pretty much a perfect description. It looks very flattering on the lips with a slight shine, and feels super comfortable and hydrating. I really like wearing this lipstick. 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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Its also super long wearing! Yet hydrating. How many lipsticks can you say that about? 3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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After trying the Estee Lauder Hydra Lustre lipstick with its weird chemically-fruity scent, I was quite pleasantly surprised that this lipstick is completely unscented. Thank goodness! 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity
I did not find that this lipstick irritated my lips at all, so no need to deduct any Duchess points.

MAC Test
I’m slightly conflicted on this one. I like the formula of this lipstick as much as I like my MAC lipsticks, but I don’t like the packaging as much (really wish it was a different colour). So I guess I’ll go with neutral Duchess points.

Would I pay $34 CAD for another one?
duchess point
Yes. All things considered, I really do like this lipstick and am wearing it quite a bit. Its one of those lipsticks you enjoy reaching for. I know if I bought another one I’d wear it and enjoy it.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy total: 11/14

Here are the rankings so far:high-end lipstick comparison Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale. At the end of the series, I am going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)!

Previous reviews in this series:
Chanel Rouge Coco Shine
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
NARS Lipstick (original)

Thanks for reading

Love,

Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

15 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-End Lipstick Review Series: Chanel Rouge Coco Shine

Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Parfait & Bel-Ami

Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Parfait & Bel-Ami

I’m back with another entry in my High-End Lipstick Review Series. Remember, at the end of the series, I am going to decide on my favorite high-end lipstick and give one away to a subscriber (in a shade of their choice)! Check out my initial post for a full explanation of my rating scale.

I have two of the Chanel Rouge Coco “Hydrating Color Lipshines”, which Chanel describes as “sheer, shiny” and “effortlessly chic.” I have #4 Parfait, a pale, cool-toned, peachy-pink and #66 Bel-Ami, a brownish, berry-plum. Parfait is perfect for a subtle, barely there nude that is very flattering on fair skin. Bel-Ami is more on the vampy side and is very buildable for a sheer lipstick. I love both shades!

Swatches Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Parfait and Bel-Ami

Swatches: Parfait and Bel-Ami

The Chanel Rouge Coco Shine lipsticks are available at the Bay and Murale for $39.00 CND.

Packaging
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The Chanel packaging exudes luxury and chicness. As far as glamorous packaging goes, this is darn near perfection. The sleek, square, black and gold tube with the iconic Chanel logo? Sigh, so dreamy. The tube gently slides shut with a perfectly engineered and reassuring “click” and stays on while rolling around in your purse. 3/3 Duchess points.

Formula
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I love the formula. My favourite MAC lipstick finish are the Lustres, and the Rouge Coco Shine lipsticks are very, very similar. I really enjoy a more sheer lipstick that has a bit of a “luscious” finish. They just look really pretty and flattering. The Chanel lipsticks are very hydrating and feel like butter. If my lips are dry, in a pinch I can actually pop this lipstick on instead of lip balm, and I don’t even need a mirror to apply it. Definitely one of my favourite formulas! 3/3 Duchess points

Wear
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For a sheer lipstick, they’re actually quite long-wearing (and don’t require a lipliner) and wear off really nicely too. 3/3 Duchess points

Scent/Taste
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Chanel lipsticks are scented, but surprisingly, I LOVE the signature scent, which is really unusual for me. I normally prefer unscented makeup products. but there is just something about that Chanel fragrance. It smells…expensive! A little bit like rose water, a little bit like vanilla? the scent is hard to describe precisely, but – like the MAC lipsticks – is very distinctive. Whereas scented drugstore lipsticks often smell cheap and chemical-ish to me, I think because Chanel uses perfume quality fragrances (hence the much higher price tag) it smells all classy 🙂 3/3 Duchess points

Sensitivity
I have never found that these lipsticks irritated my lips. They are very comfortable to wear and totally pass the sensitive skin test.

MAC Test
As much as I love the Chanel Rouge Coco Shine lipstick, I don’t know if I love it MORE than MAC. I would say I like it the same amount as my beloved MAC lipstick. This counts as neutral in terms of duchess points.

Would I pay $39 CAD for another one?
duchess point

 

Absolutely! The only thing that saves me from financial ruin is that there is no way for me to get my hands on any Chanel makeup anywhere near where I live. I would have to order online, which for me, for a an expensive lipstick, I’m reluctant to do without seeing/swatching in person. I picked up each of these lipsticks while in Montreal and Toronto. However, I would buy another one. I think they are worth the splurge. But maybe that’s my makeup addiction talking? +1 Duchess point

Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Total: 13/14

high-end lipstick review comparison chartOther reviews in this series:
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
NARS Audacious Lipstick
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel
NARS Lipstick (original)

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

13 Comments

Filed under Giveaways, Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

High-end Lipstick Review Series: NARS (original formula) VS NARS Audacious Lipstick

I thought it might be helpful to not only review the new NARS Audacious lipstick, but to also review the original NARS lipstick along with it. That way people would have a comparison if they were thinking about trying the new lipsticks out. So in this installment of my High-end Lipstick Review series you get two for one!

Let’s start with the NARS lipstick original formula which is $32.00 CAD. I tried the shade Barbarella, a “sheer peach”. This was when I was going through a “must-find-a-peachy-nude-that-works-on fair-skin” phase. I have to admit, this shade is very pretty!

NARS Lipstick in Barbarella

NARS Lipstick in “Barbarella”

NARS Barbarella swatch

NARS “Barbarella” swatched

Here’s how the NARS original lipstick fared:

Packaging
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I was underwhelmed by the original packaging. The lipsticks are weirdly tiny (although at 0.12 oz you certainly are getting a standard amount of product). Its the same material as the NARS blush packaging – that fuzzy, rubbery material that seems to pick up every bit of dirt and lint. While I can tolerate it in a blush, I don’t want to pull a lipstick out of my purse to reapply and have it looking all filthy. I had the same issue with this lipstick as I did with the Marc Jacob packaging; for a high-end lipstick it wasn’t very unique or interesting. 1/3 Duchess points.

Formula
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I really prefer a sheer lipstick, but the formula on this one was not one that I enjoyed. In a word, I would describe it as “greasy”. Need I say more? 1/3 Duchess points.

Wear
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For a lipstick described as “sheer”, this actually wears really well. 2/3 Duchess points.

Scent/Taste
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I just can’t stand the scent of the original NARS lipstick. It smells like sugary, artificial, colours-not-found-in-nature breakfast cereal. It reminds me of the smell of Fruit Loops cereal in particular. So gross. 0/3 Duchess points.

Sensitivity Test
negative 1 duchess point

 

Have to deduct a Duchess point. This lipstick seriously irritated my lips, probably due to the strong artificial scent. After wearing this, my lips would literally peel (sorry TMI!).

MAC Test

negative 1 duchess point

 

Definitely did not like this as much as my MAC lipsticks so I have to deduct another Duchess point.

Would I pay $32 for another NARS Lipstick?
negative 1 duchess point

 

Definitely not! The greasy feeling formula, icky scent, and the fact that it irritated my lips made me vow to never buy another NARS lipstick. -1 Duchess point.

NARS Lipstick (original) total: 1/14

Then along came the new NARS Audacious Lipstick which is $37.00 CAD (but at 0.14 oz you are getting slightly more product). During the V.I.B. sale, I decided to give NARS a second chance and see if their new lipstick was an improvement over the original.  So, technically, I got it for $29.60. I ordered the totally vampy shade Liv a “deep aubergine” and the darkest shade in the line. I am in love with this colour.

NARS Audacious Lipstick in Liv

NARS Audacious Lipstick in “Liv”

NARS Audacious Liv swatch

“Liv” swatched

Packaging
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Much better packaging! The new Audacious packaging is bigger, weightier, and more  substantial and has a magnetic closure (yay!). They’ve done away with the typical, weird fuzzy NARS packaging for a sleek, smooth tube. I love the black-on-black “NARS” lettering on the tube and the “NARS” imprint on the lipstick itself. This packaging looks and feels more high-end. 2/3 Duchess points.

Formula
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After using it all week, I’m not head-over-heels in love with this formula. Its a bit fussy to apply evenly (which I have heard some other reviewers mention and you can kind of tell from my swatch). I have to pat it on from the bullet, and then pat it in a lot with my finger to get it to look good and to make sure it doesn’t settle into any lines on my lips. Its also on the drier side and will  accentuate any dryness on your lips, so exfoliate and apply lip balm before hand. After all that fussing, it does look good though. 1/3 Duchess points.

Wear
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Wow this is a long wearing lipstick! Once applied it really isn’t going anywhere. I would recommend a lipliner with it (I used MAC Vino). 3/3 Duchess points.

Scent/Taste
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The Audacious Lipstick is completely unscented and has no taste! This is what I prefer in a lipstick. 3/3 Duchess points.

Sensitivity Test
The Audacious Lipstick totally passed my sensitivity test. After using it all week, it hasn’t irritated me at all. Hooray!

MAC Test
I would compare the Audacious Lipstick to the MAC Cremesheen or Amplified finishes. I wouldn’t say I like it better than MAC, but I think I like it about the same as the MAC Cremesheens. This counts as neutral (it doesn’t lose or gain any Duchess points).

Would I pay $37 for another NARS Audacious Lipstick?
negative 1 duchess point

 

While its an improvement over the original NARS lipstick, I feel like I just didn’t love this enough to pay $37 for another one. That’s a lot of money. I would REALLY have to be completely in love with it to repurchase it at that price point. -1 Duchess point.

NARS Audacious Lipstick Total: 8/14

Here’s an updated ranking:

high-end lipstick comparison chart

I feel bad that I’m not coming up with any “worth the splurge”s yet, lol, but I promise my next lipstick in the series will be one of my absolute favourite high-end lipsticks!

Previous reviews in this series:
Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème
Marc Jacobs Lovemarc Lip Gel

Thanks for reading!
Love,
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤

19 Comments

Filed under Lips, Lipstick, Reviews