Hello again my friends! Here I will finish up the final few of what have been some of my favorite beauty products that I found in 2014 that I just can’t seem to stop going back for…
This, I think, is probably the favorite piece of makeup that I currently own. (Piece of makeup? Is that even a phrase?) Honestly though, aside from price there is nothing bad that I can say about this product. Okay, there is one thing – it does NOT travel well… I took it with me on a flight to Mexico, and many of the pearls had shed quite a bit of powder into the bottom of the tin due to the shaking that must have happened on the flight.
Lucky for all of you jet-setters, Guerlain has actually recently come out with a pressed powder version of this same product, so maybe that will be the final cure all for your setting powder woes (though I would venture to guess that the compact has less product overall as compared to the pearls).
About the product itself, it is very similar to the idea behind a lot of the primers that come out with a blend of various colors. There’s a green pearl to counteract redness, a purple pearl to correct sallow coloring, yellow and white pearls to brighten, and cool pink pearls to blend with the skin. When the product is new there are 2-3 layers of them all mixed together with an applicator puff on top. The puff is okay to use, though I have much preferred a flat kabuki brush to really help push the powder into my liquid layer and to help buff it out.
The finish has a slight satin sheen to it (a nice pearl finish, pardon the pun) that really gives a beautiful put-together look to all of your makeup. If I want to have a very natural blush I will sometimes even add some of this powder again on top of my face makeup to help blend everything together – overall the product is quite versatile since it helps counteract any discolorations you have while giving a beautiful satin finish. The powder has a beautiful perfumed scent to it that is quite light and reminds me of a sweet floral. The cost, typical for Guerlain, is quite high, but these pearls have lasted me months of daily use and honestly I think this is the one item to splurge on I had to pick. There are two other colors, as far as I know, that would be beautiful for those with deeper skin tones than I have. The coloring of the pearls is, naturally, adjusted to reflect what kind of balance is needed for those with deep tan and brown skin colors. I have not tried them myself, but I am sure that they will perform beautifully. If you’d like to sample it before committing to the $62 that these will cost , I would recommend seeking out a Guerlain counter at your local Nordstrom. The ladies there know that their products are quite a financial commitment and usually are more than willing to answer any questions you might have and let you try out the products themselves. Sephora, from my experience, rarely has any Guerlain products in store – though I suppose you could take advantage of their generous return policy if you found that it wasn’t to your liking. ANYWAY MOVING ON.
My goodness was I surprised with how much I genuinely loved this product! I tend to find myself thinking poorly of the brands that have the kitsch marketing (Benefit, Too Faced, Buxom, The Balm, I’m looking at you), but this gloss was so highly recommended by one of the ladies at Sephora one day (thank you, mystery helper!) that I figured, hey I can always return it. There’s a few aspects of this lipgloss that I absolutely love. The first is how it FEELS. It’s got a ton of whatever that tingly plumping stuff is and oh BOY I can’t get enough of it. Not sure if it’s actually super plumping, but I really enjoy the sensation for what it is (is that weird of me?) so that was a huge plus. Couldn’t tell if there was real plumping or not because of my second favorite thing which was how GLOSSY this gloss was. I mean, go figure, right? But honestly this stuff looked great on even for a gloss containing glitter (unlike the hugely disappointing Dior glitter gloss, which I will touch on in a later post!) and kept its high shine for hours. Applicator is nothing special, but it picks up a good amount of product (unlike the Nars wand which I ALSO found oddly disappointing). Honestly, for <$20 ($19 at Sephora!) this stuff is a hot buy. And, my third favorite thing, there are DOZENS OF COLORS. Too many colors. The only bad thing is that every color has a girl name which, while cute I guess, I felt incredibly disappointed that I didn’t much care for the color that was my namesake. Also I kept almost picking colors based on how cute the outfit was that the girl had on, which is, generally speaking, a terrible way to pick out a lipcolor. Overall, this was a great buy and one that quickly became a purse staple. This color, Alexa, was a nice nude pink and looked great on its own or over a pale pink lip pencil for a bit more opaque color.
Not too sure how to review perfumes other than to tell you that you should go smell it yourself, but this is probably the first perfume that I have like enough to seek out more of it (after my high school obsession with DKNY’s Be Delicious, of course). It’s very light with a sweet, musky, floral scent. The musk is pretty underwhelming, which in this case I think is absolutely a good thing. The scent is feminine and sensual, and you can pick up just a rollerball if you don’t want to get a whole bottle. Personally, I have both since it does seem to fade considerably after 4 hours or so. They might try to push you into “layering” the Nirvana black or to use both or whatever but honestly that seems like a smart marketing push more than anything else to me. The Nirvana black, if I recall, was almost sickly sweet and quite overpowering as compared to the more delicate scent of the Nirvana white. I did give it a try with both “layered” together, but it just smelled as you’d expect – a mix of two different perfumes. Regardless, you can find the bottles and rollerballs here – but do check them out in Sephora in person!
Aaah nail polish, my old friend. This is the only category that I’ve chosen two for but it is only because they are both so very, very deserving of it. And while these are great colors in my opinion, the quality from both of these lines has been both extremely high and very consistent. You’re paying a bit more per bottle, but the color density and brush feel is so worth it!
The YSL shade is a true red, perfect for a night out in a little black something or other. It’s not great against my skin because I really do look better with cooler tones, but it’s such a nice polish to use that I keep coming back to it. Only complaint here is that the polish removal is actually a bit of a pain from how thoroughly pigmented this product is. Without ample cotton and remover you WILL have red all over your fingers. Whoops!
The Illamasqua shade is a perfectly beautiful lilac that is just right for spring. Not quite a pastel shade, but it will pair nicely with pastel glitter if you’re looking for something a little lighter. The brush on this is not quite as nice as with the YSL, but the product itself is top notch. YSL is pretty easily available, again at Nordstrom and Sephora for $27, though there are only ~12 colors available. Illamasqua used to be available at Sephora, but now the only reliable place that I can find it is through their website for ~$21. TONS of colors and finishes from them, though, so get a bunch to make shipping worthwhile!
Let me know if the comments if you’ve tried these before and, as always, let me know your thoughts on these or any other similar products!