Best of 2013 Part II: Lipstick, Palette, Nail Polish and Collections

After mentioning about what excited me most among the products which were released in 2013 in categories such as blush, bronzer, eye shadow quad and single yesterday, today I would like to go on and cover the rest of the categories. Tomorrow night it is going to look exactly like the one on the photo below which I took from the window during last year's fire work craziness during the first hour of 2013. Do you have a similar scene at where you live?

Category Lipstick

Year 2013 marked the release of many new formulas and lines of lipsticks. The most remarkable ones for me were Chanel's new formula of Coco Shines, Dior's new formulation of their regular lipstick line, Chanel's Moire Collection Rouge Allures with pearly finish, Armani's Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipsticks with chic red packaging, Yves Saint Laurent's Rebel Nudes and Tom Ford's Sheer Lipsticks.  I don't usually post very often about lipsticks but you can see what I am enjoying at posts with FOTDs. Below you can find what I reached for most and which shades and formulas really excited me.

My Choice for Best Lipstick of 2013: Three of the lipstick releases to Guerlain Rouge G formula with their Fall Collection were definitely love for me. Guerlain Rouge G in Gemma is one of my all time favorites but now Madame Reve is seriously about to take its place. I can wear it with strong eye or daily looks, it never looks heavy or overdone but very pretty and polishes. All thumbs up (therefore placed like a rocket at the below photo!)

Guerlain Rouge G #862 in Madame Reve (as worn here)

Also very much loved:

  • Chanel Rouge Allure #124 Ambigue (as worn here): I love this shade, plummy with very pretty pink shimmer. It also works with Chanel Joues Contraste Accent in a lovely way. Only if it would be a bit more hydrating, that one would be a number one for me.
  • Tom Ford Lip Color #29 in Vampire Kiss: Love at the first sight. When I have seen that at the counter and tried it on, I knew we were meant to be. My hubby made it a spontaneous gift for me so it became even more of a fav. I wore it to family dinner at Christmas. Review hopefully coming up soon.
  • Armani Rouge Ecstasy CC Lipsticks #304 Heat (as worn here) and #508 Daybreak (as worn here): Those two became my go to lipsticks. I have worn Daybreak as no other during the last months, which became my new favorite nude after Chanel Coco Shine in Boy. 
  • Diorific Long Wearing Lipstick #045 in Royale: Another love story, the long lasting formula and how pretty it looks with the subtle glitter particles. I loved Royale even more than Minuit which is darker so needs a more easy on eyes kind of look but I am not so good with those ;-) You can find all the lipsticks from Golden Winter Holiday 2013 collection here.
  • Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Shine #19 Fuchsia in Range: I was obsessed by this one during summer. Only if it wouldn't have the bubble gum smell... I haven't reviewed it but see a gorgeous FOTD here.

Category Palette

This year there has been pretty palette releases, especially for holidays. I missed on Tarte's blush palette which will be on my list for the next Christmas. I was lucky enough to get hold of Hourglass Ambient Lighting and Laura Mercier Artist's Palette which sold out with the speed of light. I passed on the most popular palette release of the year, Naked 3 mainly because I don't like the frosty texture of the first Naked palette I have and never reach for it. For a similar reason Marc Jakob's Eye Shadow Palette in Starlet (reviewed here) was also a huge miss for me. But here comes my favorites:

My Choice for Best Palette of 2013: As hard as it was to get, the whole effort was worth it. Le Metier de Beaute released three palettes with four blushes and four eye shadows in each, two of them spoke to me, Galore and Zeitgeist. Galore was almost made for me, eye shadows are great for smokey eye, blushes can be layered to define and highlight. I even use the left most eye shadow to contour my face and sculpt my cheeks! Galore is nothing but love!

Le Metier de Beaute Galore Collection Palette for Face & Eye

Also very much loved:
  • Giorgio Armani Face&Eye Palette Summer 2013: So soft and pretty, composed of three eye shadows and a bronzer/highlighter. When I used that one, I need nothing else than a mascara and a lipstick and I only receive compliments. It also has such a pretty design!
  • Laura Mercier Artists Palette for Eyes: This must have been one of the remarkable steals of the year for me. It is great value for money and I even got it cheaper over eBay. Love the textures and the shades, pretty mattes and lovely satins, can't get enough.
  • Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette: Why haven't anyone thought about a highlighter palette before? It is great for getting to know Hourglass Ambient Powders and for travel. 
  • Clarins The Essentials Eye Make-up Palette: Great value for money and perfect for those of you who would like a grown up version of naked palettes with more mattes and satins, less shimmer. 

Category Nail Polish

Year 2013 marked many nail polish releases. Companies such as Clinique, Giorgio Armani, Guerlain and Burberry added nail polish to their make-up lines. Many of my favorite formulas from Dior, Chanel, Butter London, a-england and Yves Saint Laurent released new shades.

My Choice for Best Nail Polish of 2013: This must have been another difficult pick for me. After eye shadows, my second obsession is the nail polishes and I reviewed hundreds of those for you this year. Nevertheless one stood out for me with its color, texture and complex shimmer.

Chanel Le Vernis #583 Taboo (not swatched but you can find superb reviews here and here)

Also very much loved:
  • Diorific #995 Minuit: The cute vintage bottle and gorgeous subdued glitter on a pretty base color. Minuit was a winner in my book.
  • Chanel Vernis #667 Bel-Argus: I thought I would love Azure from the same collection more but I found myself reaching for Bel-Argus most during the sunny summer days. I love how the fine shimmer on that looks under the sun.
  • Butter London Brown Sugar: The perfect fall shade for me. Love the shimmer and the foil finish base and how these work together.
  • A-England New Excalibur: I enjoyed this one a lot during summer on hands and toes alike. Foil finish silver with gold flecks in it which makes it suitable across skin tones and to die for after putting on some tan. 
  • Giorgio Armani #703 Leather Wood and #704 Amethyst: I was very excited about the new nail polish line of Armani which now has one of my favorite formulas. Leather Wood and Amethyst are my picks among the others for their unique duo chrome effects. My only disappointment was to see that the bottles were almost minis with only 6ml of product *sigh*. You can find all the shades swatched here.
  • Yves Saint Laurent Laque #38 Gris Underground: Who wouldn't like a pretty grey on the tips, especially coming with one of my favorite nail polish formulas. 
  • Burberry Nail Polish #200 Steel Grey: My pick from recently released Burberry nail polish line. I believe it is very unique with a golden shimmer on its dark grey basis. I am loving the Burberry nail polishes at the moment, only wished their brushes would be softer.

Category Collections

Spring, Summer, Fall and Holiday Collections, they were all sneak peeked and wondered. Now that I have reviewed many products from all of those, I would like to pick a few which excited me most.

My Choice for best collection of 2013: I believe a collection is successful once every product harmoniously work together. This year there has been releases which knocked me off my feet like Armani's Fall shades of duo-chromes or Chanel's unexpected summer collection. Among them Chanel's Holiday Collection stood up for me in terms of incorporation of the pieces. Blush works wonderfully with the eye shadow palette, which looks like an everyday quint but has a subtle twist and leans slightly plummy on the eyes. Creme Eye Shadows worked on their own or as a base for the quint, giving it different faces. I loved how shimmer mascara and liner worked with the rest of the eye look and how different lipsticks converted it all for day or night. Therefore my pick is:

Chanel Holiday 2013 Nuit Infinie de Chanel (reviewed here, here, here and here)

Also very excited about:
  • Tom Ford Summer 2013: Simple, pretty and polished. Everything worked so well together to give a soft summer look.
  • Dior Fall 2013 Mystic Metallics (check some of the products here, here and here): Two pretty eye shadow quints, creme eye shadows and two gorgeous nail polishes, this collection was a winner for me.
  • Armani Fall 2013 Kaleidoscope (also herehere and here): I was falling for each and every product at this collection and ended up purchasing almost everything. Only wished the eyes and the lips would work better together.
  • Chanel Summer 2013 L'ete Papillon de Chanel (check some of the product reviews here, here and here): A complete surprise from Chanel, it was either love or hate for most and for me it was love. I used the eye shadow sticks during summer and fall, loving the crazy colored mascara and funky nail polishes.

Anything caught your eye which are also your favorites? Which nail polish, lipstick or palette you ended up loving this year? Which collection appealed to you most?


Best of 2013 Part I: Blush, Bronzer, Eye Shadow Quad, Eye Shadow Single

It is that time of the year that one looks back and reflects upon the past, writes down plans and resolutions for the upcoming year. Today I would like to write about which products excited me most and which of them I ended up using more than the others. I photographed this rainbow today from my balcony, isn't it so pretty?

Category Blush

This year, it was full of new releases of pretty blushes. Cream blush lines of Dior and Chanel were introduced, then Dior changed the formula for their powder blushes and released many pretty shades with a nice texture. Although I like creme blushes and found myself using them from time to time, I mostly reach for powder products in this category, therefore my first three are powder blushes.

My Choice for Best Blush of 2013: Truly original to my stash, I found blush highlighting, defining and giving a healthy looking complexion at the same time.

Chanel Joues Contraste #84 Accent

Also very much loved (runner-up): 

Category Bronzer

As usual in 2013 Guerlain fired their best weapon, bronzers. They released a new range of Terracotta 4 Seasons to enhance different complexions as well as a beautiful all over glow/highlighing bronzer, Terra Ora. Dior released two seriously pretty duos which echoed through blogosphere for months, Paradise Duos in Coral and Pink Glow. Being on the more budget friendly end of luxury cosmetics, Clarins' Splendours bronzer also managed to stole my heart. 

My Choice for Best Bronzer of 2013: I picked up 03 Naturel-Brunettes from Guerlain's new line of Terracotta 4 Seasons and ended up loving the matte finish and finely milled texture. I can also use it during winter by tuning the colors as needed.

Also very much loved (runner-up): 
  • Diorskin Nude Tan Paradise Duo 002 Coral Glow: This one had many reviews so I didn't review it but it made an appearance here and swatched together with 001 Pink Glow. I love how it served a purpose of bronzer and blush at the same time.
  • Clarins Splendours Summer Bronzing Compact: My pick for the best value for money.

Category Eye Shadow Quad

Year 2013 was the year of pretty eye shadow quads, like every other year... You know my obsession  of the products on this category and that I reviewed hundreds of those pretties last year, which made Stacey call me Eye Shadow Queen *chuckles*. You can imagine how hard it is for me to select only 3-4 of those, so I extended the list a bit. 

My Choice for Best Eye Shadow Quad of 2013: Suqqu became easier to get hold of by the time Selfridges started shipping internationally. I was thinking that their spring collection had the prettiest quads I have seen but I was mistaken. Their Fall release made my heart skip a beat. Although I liked all three of them my favorite must have been EX-15. Or maybe EX-17? Or Ex-16? Ugh, I give up... 

Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow EX-15 Hanaazuki or EX-17 Hatsuhimo

Also very much loved: 
  • Tom Ford Eye Shadow Quad #13 Orchid Haze: I know I was not very enthusiastic about that one mainly because of the decision to discontinue one of my favorite quads, Burnished Amber. Orchid Haze grew on me though and I found myself loving it more and more each day.
  • Guerlain Ecrin 4 Couleurs #502 Coup de Foudre: This one was a very original and very pretty in my opinion. I loved how coral could work with the other shades. You can see an eye look at the bottom of the page here.
  • YSL City Drive Palettes Wet & Dry Classy and Arty: It is no secret that I love pure chromatics line of YSL and these two limited edition releases were superb in terms of quality and creativity. I found myself reaching for Classy over and over again.
  • Chanel Ombres Fleuries Quadra Eye Shadow in Délicatesse: It is not pictured below but I loved the silver and plum shades as well as the flower design of the quad. I wished Chanel would only release new quads with this texture.
  • MAC Eye Shadow Quad in Bare My Soul: Another post which was ready but never published, I loved how the shades worked together and how they gave the gorgeous smokey eye, even in summer.

Category Eye Shadow Single

I am not a single girl. I mean in terms of my preferences when it comes to eye shadows. The only exception I make must have been a few cult items (Burberry Pale Barley, Le Metier de Beaute Corinthian, Rouge Bunny Rouge Delicate Hummingbird I am looking at you). But I do like creme eye shadows, be it as a base or on its own. In 2013 Dior released their creme eye shadow range, Tom Ford released two new shades for their summer collection and Chanel went on extending their Illusion d'Ombre range by both permanent and limited edition releases. One of the most exciting moments were the new Eyes To Kill shades released with Armani's Fall Collection, which had all interesting duo chrome colors. 

My Choice for Best Eye Shadow Single of 2013: I thought nothing could be more prettier than Chanel IdO Illusoire but Fatal made me change my mind. With its subtle pretty silver shimmer and very buildable, easy to apply texture, Fatal became my mostly used creme eye shadow since the day we first met.

Chanel Illusion D'Ombre #837 Fatal

Also very much loved: 
  • Tom Ford Cream Color for Eyes Escapade: I have reviewed and worn here, it had the most opaque and easy to apply texture with a very soft and pretty color.
  • Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill #30 Rose Popillia and others from Kaleidoscope Collection, they are all love to me but Rose Popillia has the most understated beauty.
  • Diorshow Fusion Mono #381 Millennium and #881 Hypnotique: I loved Dior's new range of creme/mousse eye shadows, ended up reaching for these two shades most.
  • Benefit Creaseless Cream Eye Shadow in Skinny Jeans: Benefit changed the package but left the popular formula untouched. Skinny Jeans is what I reach for when I would like to look chic but have no time for an elaborate make-up, an all time favorite.

Stay tuned for the second part of the post which has categories such as palette, lipstick, nail polish and best collection.

What were your best ofs? I would love to hear them!


Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette from Effetto Nudo Spring 2014 Collection, Swatches & Comparison

Merry Christmas everyone!
I hope your holidays have been a good one. Mine was lovely but quiet busy. Three things I must have done most was traveling, talking and eating. 

As for the blog, it has been a long break for me, partly intentionally and partly due to packing my notebook and forgetting to take it with me. I couldn't even answer to your comments properly, which I am planning to do right after posting this beauty I received yesterday night upon my arrival. 

Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette

Belladonna Highlighter Palette is the star product of Giorgio Armani's Spring 2014 Collection, Effetto Nudo (check out promo images and list of other products here and here). I am sure many of you will love the muted nude color allowing the soft game of light and shade taking over the scene. Be it for bridal or an everyday look, it looks gorgeous in an underestimated way. 

Close-up: Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette

The compact has two layers, on top there is the highlighter with a beautiful flower embossed in a three dimensional way. The design includes details such as the veins on the leaves of the flower, making it a pleasure to watch and very difficult to touch. Luckily there is enough space on the sides of the flower to start with if you would like the pattern to last longer.

Second layer includes a half moon brush for touch ups on the go. This layer could also be reused for your compact foundation, blush or eye shadow from other Armani palettes which may be handy while traveling. 

Two layered compact of Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette

Belladonna Palette is designed to be used both as a highlighter and an eye shadow. The shade is a light champagne with a slight rose tingle. It is very finely milled and feels creamy to touch. Armani claims it to have a new gel based formula with a dense and light texture between cream and powder. To me, it is pigmented and shimmery but not frosty, the light catching effect is very complex and pretty. I like the way it can be blended to a very subtle effect or build up for a more dramatic usage such as on the lids.

Swatch of Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette, blended (left), heavy swatch (right)

I took out some of my favorite highlighters for a comparison. Poudre Signee de Chanel from Spring 2013 Collection, Chanel Mouche de Beaute from 2013 Croisière Collection and Route des Indes from  Bombay Express de Chanel Collection. You can see that Poudre Signee is properly loved and therefore lost its pretty design fully. Other two are more shimmery, as a result being used sparingly. 

Comparison of Giorgio Armani Belladonna (bottom left) with Route des Indes de Chanel (upper left), Mouche de Beaute (upper right) and Poudre Signee de Chanel (bottom right)

Route de Indes is much of a yellow gold once compared to other three. Chanel Mouche de Beauty is more shimmery and leans more pink. Poudre Signee is the closest in terms of shade but leans more yellow and it is less shimmery. In fact you can see how much more Belladonna can be build up, looking almost opaque in heavy swatches compared to other highlighters. The very slight pink touch of Belladonna together with its champagne base makes it suitable across skin tones, not cold nor warm.

Comparison swatches, Giorgio Armani Belladonna, Chanel Poudre Signee, Mouche de Beaute and Route des Indes

I would love to finish my review here but I feel obliged to write a few sentences to what I think about this highlighter on a value for money basis. Belladonna has 5 g/ 0.177 OZ of product and retails for something like 75EUR/ $88. Company's holiday blush Eccentrico, which I didn't review yet, partly duo to the fact of feeling ashamed of the price, even had 8 g/0.27OZ product and multiple shades on one layer. As pretty as it is, Belladonna offers 5 g of only one shade, a pretty design and a nice texture. Does it worth 88$? I think you should answer this question for yourself. Just a side note, I snatched mine for half the price on eBay. It is expected to be released from January to February internationally and it is limited edition.

Giorgio Armani Belladonna Highlighting Palette

Final thoughts: Belladonna must be the prettiest highlighter I own in terms of design, shade and texture. Its only drawback is the extremely high price and small quantity it offers. It is such a shame because it could almost get a cult status like Guerlain's Cruel Gardenia. Maybe it does anyway? Who knows...

What do you think about value for money? Is the size important or it is rather not since we anyway never finish products?

Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit, Review & Swatches

At the end of October,  Le Métier De Beauté announced something pretty was coming up.  They posted a swatch on Facebook, which me and other fans interpreted as a new Kaleidoscope eye kit and started waiting eagerly. The day it was announced, some were happy since that one was for free! But, only for those who would like to make a purchase exceeding 200$!

I was personally disappointed. The reason was I felt kind of let down by one of my favorite brands was because I couldn't buy it even if I wanted to. I felt like I was being forced to buy something else to receive something I wanted. I didn't like this game, if that makes sense. That being said, I have to admit that I found myself checking LMdB's website over and over and trying to find something that interests me which would cost more than 200 bucks. There were many products which were interesting, but if you know their new website, now you will know what I mean. They do sell bundles and not separate products, which makes you buy 3 things you like together with 2 things you would not use. Yes you do save a lot but is it really saving once you get all the things you don't need? Is this why since a few months I started seeing more and more LMdB products on eBay? Anyway those questions are not the focus of today's post...

Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit

Yes it is pretty and no I haven't spent 200 bucks on something else. I was lucky enough to purchase it from a friend who kindly offered me hers after seeing the first real swatches online since it didn't call her name but it was calling mine so I wanted to give it a go. 

I just happened to receive it last week, briefly played around with it and first decided not to post about it. Before I explain you why, let me introduce you to Gravite. Such a pretty name and it really looks inviting for smokey eye lovers out there, doesn't it?

Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit

Earth shades with pretty shimmer, this is how I would describe Gravite:
Tier #1: Mid-toned rosy brown with satin finish
Tier #2: Mid-toned peachy gold with shimmer, almost metallic finish
Tier #3: Deep blackened green with sparse gold shimmer
Tier #4: Deep egg-plant with very sparse multi colored glitter

Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit

Below I swatched all the shades with one or two swipes but for Tier#2 I needed like 10 swipes, which in the end didn't work. Then I tried it with a brush without any success. I also tried a wet swatch... You see all my effort sort of paid off to show you the color. Tier#2 had almost no color pay-off, which was the reason why I didn't want to post about Gravite because I was not sure if I was the only one who had a dud. So sad because it is such a pretty shade... Oh and should I also mention that the first swatch of this on LMdB website was awfully inaccurate?

Outdoor swatch with flash: Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit

Heart broken, I went on applying it on the lids. You can find the following replacement:
Tier #1: Inner corner
Tier #2: Middle upper lid (as much as it shows up)
Tier #3 & #4: Outer lid and crease

I was sort of happy with the result but still felt bad about having only 3 of the four shades working. I tried the tape method on the powder to kick off the upper layer in hope to find something better below without good results.

In-action: Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit on the eyes

Here is the FOTD to see how it looks combined with other parts of makeup, which I kept really minimal and nude. I really don't know what to think about this purchase, I can't help but wonder if they gave those for free because it had quality problems? Was I the only one with the dud or are there any other unfortunate ones out there who paid over $200 on the products to get this one just to find out the second tier doesn't work?

FOTD: Le Métier De Beauté Gravite Kaleidoscope Eye Kit

I guess I will never find out the answers to those questions. 

Last thoughts? I am sincerely wishing my next LMdB purchase lives up to my expectations from one of my favorite brands. If a heart breaks twice, it might not be easy to fix it ever again.

Any of you got that one? How does the second tier swatch? 

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer Angel Wings & Butterfly Wings from White Magic Collection Holiday 2013

Hi hello there! *waves*

It has been sometime since I posted so I thought between all the holiday rush and my travel schedule, I could manage to write a few lines between photos which were taken like ages ago. I am very much behind the posts I planned for this year and much of the photos might never be revealed because of that. If that happens I was thinking about a spam charactered post with all those you missed because of me being slow and busy. Would you like that?

Today I would like to share two of the items I purchased from Laura Mercier White Magic Collection for Holiday 2013. I also picked up one illuminating eye shadow and one of the limited caviar sticks which I am loving for the real snowy icy look on my lids at the moment. Remember that is sort of the trend right now? Just to name a few, Tom Ford's Ice Queen, Dior's Golden Snow... But we will come to that hopefully later. Today it is all about the nails...

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer Angel Wings & Butterfly Wings

I picked up those sight unseen since my LM counter in Breuninger received the products but were not allowed to sell it. They didn't have testers either. Once I have seen them available online, I decided to order. So here it goes, Angel Wings was for me a bit of a disappointed since it went so sheer. It is very close to Diorific Vernis #128 in Winter, which I also use as a overcoat rather than stand alone. Diorific Winter is a little warmer and even more sheer. Below you see two coats of Angel Wings. I do like how complex the shimmer is under light but still too sheer for my taste.

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer Angel Wings

Butterfly Wings, on the other hand, is rather an interesting duo chrome pearly nail polish which shifts between an antique rose and a greenish taupe if that makes sense. I don't think I own anything like that so this one is unique to my stash. With two coats one can still lightly see the nail line so you may need three. Below I applied two coats. I think photos doesn't make this one justice.

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer Butterfly Wings

Both are available at Laura Mercier counters and online. I like the consistency and lasting power as well as drying time of Laura Mercier polishes. I am just a little confused about the sizes and designs of the bottles which kept changing (i reported about it previously here) and glad that the bottles haven't changed since then. I liked their Fall polishes a little more, but I am also happy to own Butterfly wings.

Laura Mercier Nail Lacquer Angel Wings & Butterfly Wings

Final thoughts: While Angel Wings is for sheer nail polish lovers, Butterfly Wings calls nude loving ladies who'd like their polishes with a twist or perhaps with some color shift. 

Are you also in Holiday rush? How have you been lately?

Oh and would you like some "Best of" kind of posts?

Wayne Goss Limited Edition Christmas Brush Review & Comparison

Recently Wayne Goss added a face brush to his new line of brushes he released earlier this year (for my reviews of all brushes check out here and here). The limited edition face brush is released at Love Make-up (ships worldwide) last week and it is announced be available at Beautylish (for buyers in US) on the 12th of December. Just a quick note, the links in this post are not affiliated, they are placed just for your convenience. If you are at clicking mode, I recommend you to check out "how it is made" part in Beautylish, which I am loving at the moment.

Wayne Goss Limited Edition Christmas Brush

Limited edition face brush (or as it is called "The Christmas Brush") is the largest brush in the series which has a round form and is pointed. It can be seen as a bigger and thicker version of his powder brush #02. Those two have almost the same form. Face brush is made of goat hair as it is provided at Love Make-up website. Upon receiving, I could smell the goat hair very slightly but after using it a few times, the smell faded to nothing. The hair is very soft and the touch is lovely on the face. Just like the other brushes at his line, craftsmanship is excellent, I haven't experienced any hair shedding and the form is preserved beautifully until now. Bear in mind though I have been testing it only for a week now so I can't comment on how it looks like after a year but at this quality level, my expectations are high.

Wayne Goss Limited Edition Christmas Brush

I tried different applications such as powder, bronzer, blush, highlighter and contour. I have been using Wayne Goss #02 mostly for highlighter on top of the cheeks and on the bridge of the nose. I find that it works good with contouring applications too. For me #02 is too small for all over powder application, even if the powder will only be applied sparingly to certain parts of the face. I also don't prefer #02 for blush because I like wider and more blended looks on my cheeks which I achieve beautifully with Suqqu blush brush or Tom Ford cheek brush. The same goes for bronzer, I like more blended almost not there bronzer which very slightly warms up the skin and I don't like contouring with bronzer. 

I found Wayne Goss face brush to be most suitable to powder application to certain areas of the face like forehead, nose and chin. It is also very useful to set under eye concealer. Nowadays I use it also for finishing powders, such as Guerlain Meteorites for an all over application. I tried it also with bronzer and it worked wonderfully. For my blush I prefer flat brushes but if you like more defined blush look, you may like using it also on your cheeks.

Wayne Goss Limited Edition Christmas Brush vs. Wayne Goss #02

Previously I was a little let down by finding out there were Hakuhodo brushes in my collection which were similar to Wayne Goss ones. I can now proudly report I don't have anything like the Christmas brush so its form is unique to my stash. If you know a similar brush please leave a comment below. I guess the form might be close to Charlotte Tilbury's Powder&Sculpt brush, a little similar to the "artist's brush" of her father which she used at her tutorials but as far as I know these are made of synthetic hair.

Here is a comparison to some of my lovely face brushes. Chanel Powder/Contour and Hakuhodo G531 are closely related, they are both flat and angled. A different concept to make the brush friendly for application to smaller areas. I love my Hakuhodo G531 brush which is less scratchy than Chanel #2 and use it very often for all over powder application, especially for finishing powder. Wayne Goss face brush works also for more detailed face work, application of setting powder to forehead, under eye, nose as well as highlighting and contouring.

Wayne Goss Limited Edition Christmas Brush vs. Chanel #2, Wayne Goss #02, Hakuhodo G531

Again the tendency is there, there is not much room for very dense angled and flat brushes in Wayne's collection. Pointy and round they are and depending on your preferences it might work wonders. I have to admit, I like my flat brushes but I am slowly getting used to the different pressure technique with round and pointed ones.

Final thoughts: Loving this new softness in my life and welcoming its unique form to my stash.

Are you planing to check it out? Flat and angled or round and pointed, which one do you prefer?

Suqqu Christmas Kit B, Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora, Review & Story

For 2013 Holiday season, Suqqu released two make-up sets to celebrate their 10th anniversary. As it is stated by their website, the collection is designed to replicate a beautiful winter's night sky upon your eyes. Each kit consists of a limited edition eye shadow compact, a trial size mascara with deep navy, face wash and cleanser as well as a pouch and mirror. The difference between Set A & B is only the eye shadow quad. Kit A has Ex-18 Aoboshi (see beautiful swatches here and here) and  which offers pinks and blue combination. Kit B includes Ex-19 Toryokuzora, which I would like to show you today.

Suqqu Christmas Kit B
Now this post is going to be a little different than the rest. As you are enjoying some photos, I would like to tell you how I laid my hands on this set because it is a fun story and I feel like writing about it.

After the photos of the collection were revealed, I kind of noted down Set B on my wish list, since I am not big on blues. It was supposed to be released on the 1st of November. Noted that down in my calender and wrote an e-mail to the customer service of Selridges to ask if those will be available online. I received an e-mail saying "Sorry but those will only be available at Suqqu counter". 

To my surprise at the end of October Set A and Set B appeared on Selfridge's website but as always with some errors. Only some of the items could be delivered Internationally, so there was a choice between Set A and nothing. Set B was only for UK-delivery. When I was in Berlin for a few days, I have briefly seen set B becoming available for international delivery and disappearing within hours, and forever.

Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora
A few days later, lovely Jo from Makeup Remastered gave us heads-up about the availability of Suqqu Christmas Sets in Ichibankao. I was trying to find some swatches since I was not that sure about green being really green or maybe pulling undesirably in khaki direction (which is not my favorite shade as the readers might know by now). As I was slow and Suqqu fans were fast Suqqu Christmas Kit B once again slipped from my hands and it was sold out within hours.

Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora

I accepted my destiny and convinced myself that it was not meant to be. Maybe the make-up gods were trying to protect me from acquiring another "Khaki-disaster". I was ready to forget about this until I have seen this post from Kate, oh Kate, why, why?!!? Then this post, once again looking gorgeous in Toryokuzora, and this! I was cursing myself not to get it while I could and trying to stay calm but Belly's post pulled the trigger. I had to do something. Something, but what?

These were sold out almost everywhere online and there were only a few astronomic offers in eBay. My regret would turn out to be really expensive. Before I went to sleep that night, I decided to contact one of the sellers to ask if there was another way to get this quad, maybe a little discount?

Close-up: Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora

In the morning I woke up to find out that they contacted me. I wrote them back, waiting for an answer, one day long, didn't receive anything. I was started to get frustrated and check again the e-mail I have written just to find out that it was directed to a wrong address! Then checked the item in eBay. It was sold! Lost it third time in a raw, what was going on with me?!?!

At this part of the story you can hear me cry!

Before I go on with it, let me introduce you the shades:
a: A lovely light peach with shimmery finish.
b: Mid-toned warm bronze taupe with satin finish.
c: The most gorgeous deep forest green with multi dimensional sparkle, The star of this palette.
d: Matte white

Interesting thing about Suqqu Palettes is that you can layer them and they don't turn out to be muddy. Look how beautifully the shades a and c layer to give out another gorgeous taupe, a little cooler and more shimmery than shade b.

Swatch: Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora

So let me go on with my story. The seller behind the sold item turned out to be a lovely lady, Natalia, living in Japan. Another make-up enthusiast like myself. She had no other Holiday Sets but woke up in the morning and rushed to the closest Suqqu counter to grab one for me. She told me in Japan Set A was sold out since the dark blue shade looks especially gorgeous on dark brown eyes but there were a few Set B left. She sent me that the next day and I got it in less than a week! 

Happy ending with special thanks and hugs to Natalia!!

Moral of the story?Nnothing can stop a make-up addict! ;-)

In-action: Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora

I can't wait to have the green shade all over the eye lids, I am sure that will be pleasantly shiny. Below I went for something more wearable during the day. I applied the peach shade all over and defined it with taupe and green on the crease. I used the white shade to highlight below brow bone and on the inner corner. Below I am wearing Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora combined with Guerlain Rouge Automatique #660 Illusion on the lips and Chanel Joues Contraste #87 Emotion on the cheeks.

FOTD: Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora

Final thoughts: Suqqu Blend Color Eyeshadow Quad EX-19 Toryokuzora is great for any occasion, day or night, party or work. Another lovely versatile quad from Suqqu. Thumbs up.

How far did you go to find a sold-out limited edition or a hard-to-find item?

Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey, #202 Metallic Khaki, #203 Storm Grey, #106 Dark Trench, #103 Ash Rose, #303 Oxblood Review, Swatches & Comparison

I was at the Burberry counter in Douglas, Koenig Strasse to return something and there they were, chic packaging, modern shades. Meet Burberry Nail Polishes.

Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey, #202 Metallic Khaki, #203 Storm Grey, #106 Dark Trench, #103 Ash Rose, #303 Oxblood
As a starter I picked up six shades. Two nudes, two greys, a red and metalic shade to have a feeling of the line. To be exact, these are called " Iconic Colour Nail Polish" and I wonder why not "nail varnish" if it is all so british. I really like the bottle design and find it to be very modern. Each bottle offers 8 ml nail polish and retails some EUR cheaper than Dior and Chanel which makes it almost the same price as Dior's 10 ml polishes. 

Let's check out the shades I picked up to show you, then we can talk more about my impressions. Here comes Dark Trench, #106 from my nude picks. This one is a very light cool grey-taupe with creme finish. I don't know why it has "Dark" in its name because it is so light. There is also another shade "Stone" at Burberry range which is close to Dark Trench but a little warmer. I love coolness of this, since I already have many beiges already. I loved how clean and elegant Dark Trench looks. Below I applied two coats.

Burberry Nail Polish #106 Dark Trench

Next comes a little more feminine version of a cool taupe, Ash Rose, #103. Again not too pink which would make it more common to my stash therefore less desirable for me. Ash Rose is a very pretty light rosy taupe with creme finish. It applied smoothly and two coats are enough for full coverage.

Burberry Nail Polish #103 Ash Rose

From all the reds of the line, I opted for the most vamp and dark one, Oxblood, #303, a deep bordeaux with creme finish. I love this one because although it is dark, it is not too dark nor blackened. Two coats are enough for a perfect coverage.

Burberry Nail Polish #303 Oxblood

Although I am usually not a great fan of khakis, I wanted to test one of the metallic finish nail polishes and ended up getting Metallic Khaki. The name describes the shade pretty good. It is a mid-toned khaki shade with golden metallic finish. I like it because again it is not too dark and not blackened. Two coats apply beautifully.

Burberry Nail Polish #202 Metallic Khaki

Taupes and greys couldn't be done better than how Burberry does them. First I would like to show you Storm Grey, #203. This one is a mid-toned bluish grey with creme finish. I think the blue in that makes it unique and pretty, again two coats applied for perfect coverage.

Burberry Nail Polish #203 Storm Grey

Last shade I would like to show you, stole my heart by the first sight. Steel Grey... It is a mid-toned taupe with secret golden shimmer which makes it pull a little warmer than it is. Secret shimmer can be noticed under direct sun light but even if it is not there, the base color is also very pretty... 

Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey

Here one more shot to show you how gorgeous this looks in the bottle. I wished that shimmer would be more apparent on the nails, not too much but just a little more. Still it is beautiful and a gorgeous shade which would work across different skin tones. I applied two coats.

Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey

I didn't want to make this post even longer so here is a quick comparison of Burberry shades with some close shades from my stash.

Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey, #202 Metallic Khaki, #203 Storm Grey, #106 Dark Trench, #103 Ash Rose, #303 Oxblood vs. close shades from my stash

I found Storm Grey #203 to be very close to Dior #707 Gris Montaigne, which is a little warmer and less blue. Steel Grey is warmer than Gris Montaigne. 

#202 Metallic Khaki reminded me of YSL's polish #28 Bronze Aztec that I fell in love at the counter but not so much on my nails since it was way too blackened. Good news is that Metallic Khaki is lighter in tone, therefore shows more of its color. My attempt to find something close to Metallic Khaki from Chanel range failed. I also tried matching Metallic Khaki with Alchemie, which is more of a gold than khaki and therefore very different.

Burberry #106 Dark Trench and #103 Ash Rose are both close to Chanel #559 Frenzy. Frenzy has a little bit of lilac in it and pulls a little warmer than Dark Trench. Ash Rose has more pink but all three have similar "feel" once on the nails, clean, minimalist, modern and elegant. I love them all! Do I need Burberry Stone too? Maybe ;-)

Burberry #303 Oxblood is close to Tom Ford's Bordeaux Lust which is a tad more red and warm. Again I couldn't find a similar shade between 50 shades of Chanel's reds.  Rouge Fatal looked promising but turned out to be too warm once compared. Chanel Rouge Noir is deeper and more blackened than Oxblood.

Comparison to close shades: Burberry Nail Polishes #200 Steel Grey, #202 Metallic Khaki, #203 Storm Grey, #106 Dark Trench, #103 Ash Rose, #303 Oxblood

Yes, gorgeous shades, that greys, taupes, all wearable but not boring. As for the consistency, I have to admit although these cover beautifully with two coats, they were not the easiest polish to work with. I had to remove a few nails and reapply because I experienced some pooling. The brush is wider than Chanel but not as wide as Dior, it might be similar to YSL. I do agree to this review by Belletristic Beauty though, it was kind of stiff and therefore making the application a little harder.

On the bright side, these do last and last. I can say, on me they don't chip and there was only minor tip wear at the end of day 4. This makes them among the longest lasting polishes I tried. Oh and, have I mentioned that the bottle design is gorgeous?

Burberry Nail Polishes 

Final thoughts: Burberry must have released the most interesting and chic debut nail polish range ever. I love how wearable and yet interesting the shades are. Coverage is great, even with lighter shades two coats are enough. The consistency could be a little thicker though and brush may need some improvement. All in all, really enjoying these!

Do you have your eyes on any of these?
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