Tag Archives: NARS

NARS Velvet Shadow Stick Review

NARS Velvet Shadow Stick in Oaxaca

NARS Velvet Shadow Stick in Oaxaca

Last year I got really into cream shadows, like the MAC Pro Longwear Paint Pots and the Revlon Colorstay Creme Eye Shadows. When I saw the NARS Velvet Shadow Sticks featured in a YouTube video, I was intrigued. Nearly all of the cream eye shadows I’ve tried (like the Chanel Illusion d’Ombre or the Maybelline Color Tattoos) have been in pots. I was curious to try a cream formula that was in a stick. The NARS Velvet Shadow Sticks are touted as “a creamy, blendable eyeshadow packaged in a convenient, portable stick” and come in some truly stunning shades. Continue reading

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Filed under Eyes, Eyeshadow, Reviews

Redeeming Sephora Points, VIB Rouge Welcome Gift, & a Great Beauty Deal (still available!)

Sephora 500 point reward Tarteist Tools, VIB Rouge Welcome Gift, and Urban Decay Beauty Deal

Who doesn’t love Sephora points, amirite?

Hey everyone! I just wanted to do a quick post about the free items I got with my latest Sephora order, especially because one of the Beauty Deals is pretty great and is still available on the website. When I placed my order, I ended up qualifying for VIB Rouge again [hangs head in shame and cuts up credit card]. I was happy to see that the VIB Rouge Welcome Gift was actually available this time. I never did get the VIB Rouge gift last year (which I think was a mini Marc Jacobs Beauty Lipstick) even after contacting Sephora, who continually said they were “out of stock”, which I think was pretty bad customer service considering how much one has spent when one hits the Rouge level. The only VIB Rouge gift I’d received was for 2014, the first time I qualified, and that was the mini Bite Beauty Luminous Creme Lipstick. So I was really pleased with the 2016 VIB Rouge Welcome Gift, a super cute mini NARS blush.

NARS mini blush VIB Rouge exclusive Goulue

This year’s VIB Rouge welcome gift: a baby NARS blush!

Continue reading


Filed under Cheeks, Eyes, Face, Lip Liner, Lips, Lipstick, Mascara

More of my Sephora VIB Sale Purchases

Sephora VIB sale haul: eyeshadows
At the Sephora spring sale, I picked up some Bite Beauty lip products (you can see my post about those here) and I also wanted to test out a NARS Single Eye Shadow ($31 CAD), which I had never tried before. While cruising the site, I also noticed the mini Smashbox Photo Matte Eyes Travel Palette. I had recently tried out the Smashbox Full Exposure palette and particularly loved the matte eye shadow shades in it. I actually wrote in my review, “I would definitely like to try more of the Smashbox matte shadows, but their palettes and trios all seem to have a similar mix of shimmers and mattes. Fingers crossed they come out with an all matte palette!” It seems my makeup prayers were answered! So understandably, I was excited to try out the all-matte Smashbox palette. Continue reading


Filed under Eyes, Eyeshadow, Reviews

Strobing for Fair Skin: Good Highlighters (& one miss)

Highlighters for pale skin

Can strobing work on fair skin?

“Strobing” or basically highlighting seems to be the latest makeup trend. When you have very pale skin, finding a foundation light enough is a challenge, let alone finding something even lighter than your skin that could be considered a “highlight” (and don’t even get me started on contouring/bronzing, that’s a whole other post). Nevertheless, pale, I-live-in-a-Northern-climate, Nerdy Librarian Girl set out on a mission to find a highlighter for fair skin to partake of this strobing trend! Continue reading


Filed under Bronzers & Highlighters, Face, Reviews

NARS Lip Pencils: Satin, Velvet Matte & Velvet Gloss

NARS Lip Pencils

NARS Lip Pencils

Just a short post about the NARS Lip Pencils I have. I received two of the NARS Lip Pencils as my Sephora VIB Birthday Reward and I have also purchased one. I have one in each of the finishes: Velvet Matte, Velvet Gloss and Satin:

  • Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella, a blue-red
  • Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in New Lover, described as a “gold infused strawberry pink”
  • Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien, a mauvey-pink
NARS Lip Pencils Velvet Matte Cruella, Velvet Gloss New Lover, and Satin Rikugien

Velvet Matte Cruella, Velvet Gloss New Lover, & Satin Rikugien

My favourite is definitely the Satin Lip Pencil. I love the finish of this one the best. Rikugien is such a pretty, wearable my lips but better type of shade. The Velvet Gloss is a little too frosty for me. Cruella is the right shade of red for me, but I’m generally not a huge fan of matte finish lip products.

swatches NARS Lip Pencils Velvet Matte Cruella, Velvet Gloss New Lover, and Satin Rikugien

Velvet Matte Cruella, Velvet Gloss New Lover, and Satin Rikugien

The thing I like about the NARS Lip Pencils is that they are completely unscented. I’m not a big fan of other NARS lip products I’ve tried (like the lipsticks and lipgloss) but I really like the Satin Lip Pencil. I would totally get more of these. I have two on my wishlist, Biscayne Park and Het Loo, two gorgeous nude shades!

NARS Satin Lip Pencils in Biscayne Park & Het Loo

Biscayne Park & Het Loo Satin Lip Pencils

The NARS Lip Pencils are $32.00 CAD.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Lips, Reviews

Review: New NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation

When I was last in Sephora, a super friendly SA demoed the new NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation for me and gave me a generous sample to try. I’ve given up on buying high-end foundation without trying out a sample first, if possible. The All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation is $57.00 CAD, so I definitely wanted to test out a sample before buying! I’ve been wearing it to work all week and I feel like I have made up my mind about it.

I asked the SA for the palest shade, and she gave me the shade Siberia. On the Sephora website, its described as “light w/ neutral balance of pink & yellow undertones.” There’s also two other very light shades: Mont Blanc, “light with pink undertones” and Gobi, “light with yellow undertones.”

Siberia is probably one of the palest, whitest (not pink or yellow toned) liquid foundations I’ve ever seen which is amazing! I have a really difficult time finding foundation light enough for me, and the first day I wore this someone told me, concerned, that I “looked pale.” I also have a difficult time with foundations oxidizing on me and shifting colour throughout the day. This did not happen at all. The colour really did stay true the entire time I was wearing it.

The foundation is described as “An oil-free foundation that delivers full, natural-looking coverage with one drop, for lightweight, 16-hour wear” and that “builds and blends effortlessly.” I would totally agree that it is full, yet natural looking coverage and not a thick mask of makeup (and I’m not always a big fan of full coverage). It also stayed on literally the entire day. But here is where the negative part of the review comes in. Before I cover the negatives, just to be clear, this is a foundation that you are supposed to shake. The SA said to stir the sample before each application, which I did.

This stuff did not blend effortlessly for me. I cannot imagine trying to blend out “one-drop” over my entire face. It reminds me of Revlon ColorStay only it “sets” even faster. It dries in place very quickly to the point that it took a lot of work to blend in and look natural. I tried several different methods of application: Beauty Blender, fingers, foundation brushes, including the Real Techniques Buffing Brush (normally a good one), but nothing really worked for me. I didn’t enjoy fighting with this foundation every morning 😦

Another negative for me was the finish. The word “luminous” may be in the product name, but this foundation is pretty much completely matte on me. I  prefer a liquid foundation that gives a more dewy, hydrated appearance to the skin. I have fairly dry skin and this foundation really accentuated that. It even made my skin feel dryer.

So to summarize…


  • Very light shades available for fair skin!
  • Colour stays true and doesn’t oxidize
  • Natural, not heavy/opaque combined with full coverage which is rare
  • Long wearing
  • Probably a good foundation for those with oily skin


  • Difficult to apply and blend
  • Sets too quickly
  • Matte finish, accentuated dryness
  • Not a good foundation for those with dry skin

I don’t think this is a bad foundation necessarily, it just isn’t the type of foundation I prefer and I don’t think its a good one for dry skin. If you’re looking for something extremely light and haven’t been able to find a foundation that matches your fair skin, this might be for you. If you have oily skin and are a fan of foundations like Revlon ColorStay, you would probably like this. My skin is super dry right now with the crazy cold, dry winter weather we’ve been having. I don’t think I’ll be purchasing this one.

Have you tried the NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation yet? What do you think?

I’ve also never tried NARS Sheer Glow, so please let me know if you think I’d like that foundation.

Thanks for reading!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Face, Foundation & Primer, 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!
Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Concealer, Face, 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:

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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.

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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.

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

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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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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!
Nerdy Librarian Girl ❤


Filed under Lips, Lipstick, Reviews

Best Nars Blushes for Fair Skin

Nars Blushes for Fair Skin
Nars is known for their blushes and with have such a large number to choose from (close to 30) it can be a little overwhelming to know where to start. I had decision anxiety in Sephora when I bought my first one! I thought I’d share which Nars blushes I really like and that I think work well on fair skin.

Nars blushes for fair skin: Orgasm, Deep Throat, Amour, & Madly

Nars blushes for fair skin (clockwise from top left): Orgasm, Deep Throat, Madly, & Amour

Orgasm: I know that everyone has probably already heard of Orgasm blush, but it really is the prettiest shade. Orgasm was the first Nars blush I ever bought, probably about 10 years ago now, and I have hit pan and repurchased it several times since then. Whenever I wear it, I always get complimented on my “complexion” (Spoiler alert: Its the blush!)

Deep Throat: Rude name aside, this is also a great blush. Orgasm is a peachy pink with a golden shimmer. Deep Throat is slightly more pink with less shimmer. When I’m not feeling so shimmery and want something more subtle, I will pick Deep Throat over Orgasm.

Madly: This blush was actually recommended by a Sephora SA and is one of those shades you might overlook in the pan. A pinky-brown nude, it has a hint of golden shimmer similar to Orgasm. Its often described as “peachy” but I don’t get much peach on my skin tone (which has very strong pink undertones). It’s in the same ballpark as Cargo Tonga or MAC Prism, neutral and subtle.

Amour: I got this one after watching gossmakeupartist’s video How to Pick the Right Blusher for Your Skin Tone. Although it looks intense, this deep reddish pink sheers out to give fair skin a sun-kissed or a been-out-in-the-cold look. Its one of my favourite blushes for fall.

Swatches: Orgasm, Deep Throat, Amour, Madly

Swatches (L-R): Orgasm, Deep Throat, Amour, Madly

Nars blushes are $33 CAD and available in Canada through Sephora, Murale, The Bay, and Nordstrom.

What are your favourite Nars blushes?

Thanks for stopping by ❤


Nerdy Librarian Girl


Filed under Cheeks, Favourites

Top Five Blushes for Fair Skin (High-End)

My top five blushes for fair skin (high-end)

My top five blushes for fair skin (high-end)

Sorry I haven’t posted much this week. Its the end of semester so work has been very busy. I thought I would share my blush recommendations for fair skin. This post is my top five high-end blushes. I will do my drugstore blush picks soon though!

These are in no particular order:

NARS Deep Throat

NARS “Deep Throat”

I have several NARS blushes and they have such an enormous shade range its easy to find one that works for you. My favourite NARS blush is Deep Throat, a peachy-pink that is similar to NARS Orgasm, but a lot less shimmery. ($33.00 CAD)

Chanel Joues Contraste 55 In Love

Chanel Joues Contraste 55 “In Love”

I mentioned this in a recent post, and I am totally in love with Chanel In Love. I think anyone with fair skin will like this natural, peachy-coral blush with a subtle shimmer that gives you the perfect glow. ($48.00 CAD)

theBalm FratBoy

theBalm “FratBoy”

The deepest of the five shades, theBalm’s FratBoy is a completely matte, corally-pink. I consider theBalm a “high-end” line because its difficult to find in Canada (most drug stores don’t carry it) and the price point is higher than what I consider “drugstore” ($24.00 CAD).

LORAC Exposed

LORAC Baked Matte Satin blush in “Exposed”

Lorac Baked Matte Satin blush in Exposed is a favourite of LisaLisaD1‘s and bought this one from her online shop actually. Despite its name, this blush is NOT matte; it has a beautiful (not too shimmery) sheen. I often use it as a highlight for the tops of my cheeks over another blush. Its fabulous on its own too. This peachy-pink blush is one of my all time favourites. If you’re searching for LORAC in Canada, try the Nordstrom’s site which has reasonable shipping and no additional customs charges. ($27.70 CAD)

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour blush in "Dollface"

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour blush in “Dollface”

I have three of the Tarte Amazonian Clay blushes. My Dollface is the “baby” sized version, but its available in the full-size. Dollface is a light, cool-toned, matte pink. It gives a very natural flush to the cheeks and is super long-wearing. ($31.00)

Here they are swatched in natural daylight:

Top 5 blushes for fair skin -  swatches L-R: NARS Deep Throat, Chanel In Love, theBalm FratBoy, LORAC Exposed, Tarte Dollface.

Top 5 blushes for fair skin – swatches L-R: NARS Deep Throat, Chanel In Love, theBalm FratBoy, LORAC Exposed, Tarte Dollface.

For information on where to purchase these brands in Canada, checkout my Makeup Shopping Guide for Canadians. I’ll be back soon with my top five drugstore blushes!

Thanks for stopping by ❤

I’d love to hear what your favourite blushes are for fair skin!


Filed under Cheeks, Face, Favourites