The facial spray-slash-toner that you NEED this spring | L’Occitane Immortelle Brightening Mist review

Friday, April 19, 2013

L'Occitanne facial spray water review

The product: L’Occitane Immortelle Brightening Mist

So, I wrote a fifteen page paper earlier this week on prefrontal cortical damage and its intersection with tactical communications, mostly between the hours of eleven at night on Tuesday and two in the afternoon on Wednesday.

I’m still kind of dazed.

Despite the lack of sleep I’ve been getting this term, though, I think I’ve been presenting a pretty glowy base… but maybe my perpetually-dry skin just has me biased. Either way, L’Occitane’s limited edition facial spray has been high, high up on the list of things I’ve been loving!

Best makeup setting spray - L'Occitane

What it is: Part of L’Occitane’s Immortelle Brightening range, the Brightening Mist is an alcohol-free toner & make-up setting spray. It’s enriched–of course–with floral water from the Immortelle flower, an anti-ageing “golden sun” (Helichrysum arenarium) sourced by L’Occitane from the island of Corsica.

Also formulated with Bellis Perennis (a common European species of daisy), the range is made to increase collagen production, protect against free radicals, and reduce the appearance of pigmentation marks.

Bright blue eyeliner look

A quick snap from this bright blue eyeliner tutorial — glowing skin courtesy of the Immortelle mist!

What makes it great is not the marketing or fancy-schmancy ingredients, however. Nope, it’s something much more simple than that: the packaging. Solidly housed in the Immortelle range’s white, yellow, and blue uniform, this mist is easy to aim, spray, and diffuse – no awkward spluttering in sight.

Decent facial sprays are actually pretty easy to find, but functional, utilitarian packaging – that’s a little harder to come by, if you ask me.

L'Occitanne Immortelle face mist

The verdict?

I hate recommending limited edition skincare, but I have to say — I’m pretty darn pleased with this one. I think the fragrance (floral; a natural and synthetic blend) could be a little lighter, but my dry skin absolutely loves this water-and-glycerine formula!

All in all, I’m not too broken up about the fact that this isn’t in the permanent range. I like it, of course, and I think it does a great job of setting makeup and leaving skin glowing… but I think what I really love about it is the dense, even mist (and pretty-but-simple packaging).

Availability: $20 USD/$22 CAD for 100ml, limited edition.

Additional photos & more »

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense: review, swatches, & overall thoughts | Part 2/2

Friday, March 15, 2013

Jumbo lip pencil colour balm review - Clinique Chubby Stick Intense

The product: Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm

 in 01 Curviest Caramel, 02 Chunkiest Chili, 03 Mightiest Maraschino, 04 Heftiest Hibiscus, 05 Plushest Punch, 06 Roomiest Rose, 07 Broadest Berry, and 08 Grandest Grape.

Psst: before you start in on this one, have you read our Chubby Stick Intense posts with full-face swatches & shade name mockery coverage?

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Fall 2012 review

The formula

Now, the shades and packaging of these are super-cute (of course), but what actually has me head over heels for them is the formula.

Rich, moisturizing, and shockingly pigmented, the Intenses apply with buildable colour and settle well into the lips — I find the colour “sets” once applied, going on a little slippery but wearing with more of a satin-gloss finish (and without any colour displacement!) after 5-10 minutes.

(Ingredients behind the cut.)

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense review

Clinique Chubby Stick tinted lip color balm review

The wear

I do find the formula of these varies a bit by shade, but not enough that I’d recommend some wholeheartedly and others not at all. Chunkiest Chili is a little gritty, for instance, and Grandest Grape is a little more slippery — I prefer a drier formula, which I found in Curviest Caramel, Heftiest Hibiscus, and Plushest Punch. (The latter two have much more opaque colour).

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense shade range

On the whole, however, the Clinique Chubby Stick Intenses last much longer than the original Chubby Sticks, starting off glossier and wearing into more of a stain, visually. I don’t find they really stain the lips, though — a bonus, if you want to be able to switch between colours through the day.

I would put the wear time of these at 3-5 hours; I can make it to five with most of these as long as I’m not eating or drinking (or talking a lot), but I prefer to touch up around the three hour mark for more even colour and added moisture.

The shades

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense review swatches

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense swatches – hover for shade name labels

I’ve been getting the most wear out of 01 Curviest Caramel, a cream-finish natural lip shade with the perfect yellow-pink balance. It pairs well with both everyday makeup and a smokey eye (the sign of a truly great nude!) 02 Chunkiest Chili, on the other hand, gets almost no love; the the silver glitter adds a frosty finish to this understated, reddish base.

Next,03 Mightiest Maraschino is a bright, shimmer-free red leaning more strawberry than vamp — perfect for both a lively holiday lip and a carefree summer pout. The real showstopper here, though, is 04 Heftiest Hibiscus. I hate most orange hues, but the pink-touched tangerine-hibiscus hues coming off on this one are so undeniable that I can’t help but pull it out again & again.

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturizing Lip Color Balm swatches

Clinique Chubby Stick Intenses, swatched L-R: 01 Curviest Caramel,  02 Chunkiest Chili, 03 Mightiest Maraschino, 04 Heftiest Hibiscus, 05 Plushest Punch, 06 Roomiest Rose, 07 Broadest Berry, 08 Grandest Grape

I think 05 Plushest Punch is going to fly off the shelves; a bright bold pink, it’s a vibrant shade that’s still easy to pull off, grabbing attention without verging on “obnoxious”. 06 Roomiest Rose is more subdued; darker, but still bright, it’s shot through with subtle shimmer that gives lovely depth (minus the frostiness of Chunkiest Chili).

For a much more subdued (but still very noticeable) shade, 07 Broadest Berry is the Curviest Caramel version of a lip with colour: with brownish berry undertones, it’s very wearable, but still gives a lovely, defined lip.

Finally, I found 08 Grandest Grape to be a little slippery at first (though, like the others, it does settle into the lips!), but it’s absolutely lovely — still very wearable; more of a crushed-berry stain than a theatrically purple lipstick.

Don’t miss this post for full-face & lip swatches of the Intense lineup!

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense packaging - twist-up pencil

Tinted lip color balm - full coverage - review

The verdict?

The press materials for the Chubby Stick Intenses promise “the perfect marriage between a moisturizing lip balm and a full coverage lip colour,” and I think they absolutely deliver. Silly names aside, the shade range offers a gorgeous mix of brights with a couple great “everyday” shades to fall back on, and the formula is both intensely comfortable and high-impact.

(What, did you seriously think I was going to make it through this entire review without using the word “intense”?)

A few other things I love about these: the twist-up packaging (no product is lost to sharpening) and the scent-free, paraben-free formula.

Availability: $16 USD/$19 CAD at Clinique (US), SephoraNordstrom, & Clinique counters.

Additional photos, ingredients, & more »

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense: let’s talk about those names | Pre-review bonus track

Monday, March 11, 2013

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense names

I’m working on a Chubby Stick Intense review for tomorrow (finally!), but I just had to take a moment and say: seriously?! No one at Clinique could do better than these for names?

I say this as lovingly as possible, but as much as I adore Clinique, this is ridiculous:

  • 01 Curviest Caramel
  • 02 Chunkiest Chili, because that doesn’t make you think of chili that’s already been consumed
  • 03 Mightiest Maraschino » this one, I love
  • 04 Heftiest Hibiscus, seriously
  • 05 Plushest Punch » this one, too!
  • 06 Roomiest Rose
  • 07 Broadest Berry when it could have been a fitting, relatable “Boldest”
  • 08 Grandest Grape

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense review teaser

I get that Clinique wanted to use big-sounding superlatives for the Intenses, but there is no excuse for Roomiest Rose. Or, for that matter, Chunkiest Chili!

Why couldn’t we have had a Cheeriest Chili? A Revival Rose? A Heidegger Hibiscus (yes, I am joking about this one, but this gorgeous shade is practically a way of being), or the aforementioned Boldest Berry? Boldest Berry, at least, should have been a no-brainer — why on earth someone would choose “broadest” when you could go with boldest for such a gorgeous shade, I have no idea.

And for that matter, why is Oversized Orange not an Intense? It’s oversized!

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense swatches teaser

If you have better names for these, come snark it up the comments!

Which names do you love, which do you hate? Can you think of any better names than these? I (and your fellow readers) would love to hear ‘em!

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense: swatches & full-face photos | Part 1/2

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense swatches

The product: Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm

↳ in 01 Curviest Caramel, 02 Chunkiest Chili, 03 Mightiest Maraschino, 04 Heftiest Hibiscus, 05 Plushest Punch, 06 Roomiest Rose, 07 Broadest Berry, and 08 Grandest Grape.

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm

Clinique Chubby Sticks Intense: full product range (in numerical order)

The full review for these will be coming up next week, but I just had to slip them into the Week of Awesome — and understandably so, I think.

The new Chubby Stick Intenses pair everything I love about Chubby Sticks (comfort, packaging, and a scent-free formula) with everything I love about a great lipstick (wear time, colour, and intense pigment), and then adds some extra awesome (a gorgeous, smooth formula; colour that doesn’t move around; surprisingly great hydration.)

They’re… basically the best.

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense lip swatches

bare lips

for reference

1 Clinique Curviest Caramel swatch, Chunkiest Chili

 01 Curviest Caramel / 02 Chunkiest Chili

3 Clinique Mightiest Maraschino swatch, Heftiest Hibiscus

03 Mightiest Maraschino / 04 Heftiest Hibiscus

5 Clinique Plushest Punch swatch, Roomiest Rose

05 Plushest Punch / 06 Roomiest Rose

7 Clinique Broadest Berry swatch Grandest Grape

07 Broadest Berry / 08 Grandest Grape

A few shades I think you’ll love

Clinique Plulshest Punch Chubby Stick Intense

05 Plushest Punch

Clinique Broadest Berry Chubby Stick Intense swatch

07 Broadest Berry

Clinique Grandest Grape Chubby Stick Intense swatch

08 Grandest Grape

In the tubes & with the rest of a face

01 Clinique Curviest Caramel Chubby Intense

Clinique Chubby Stick Intense in 01 Curviest Caramel (my favourite Intense — will be featured in a look next week!)

Keep reading »

Karl Lagerfeld x Shu Uemura | Mon Shu Rouge Unlimited Lipstick reviews, photos, swatches

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

karl x shu luxe burgundy, mon shu red, celebrity beige

The product: karl lagerfeld for shu uemura Rouge Unlimited Lipstick in Luxe Burgundy, Mon Shu Red, and Celebrity Beige

While working on a shu uemura Blossom Dream post (Spring 2013), I was hit by a rather startling realization: in all of the holiday bustle, I completely forgot to post about shu’s Holiday Rouge Unlimited Lipsticks.

Seeing as they were my absolute favourite part of the collection, you can see why that might have been a bit of an issue for me.

karl lagerfeld x shu uemura rouge unlimited lipsticks

Karl Lagerfeld for shu uemura Rouge Unlimited Lipsticks in Luxe Burgundy, Mon Shu Red, and Celebrity Beige

The formula: You always hear about shu’s lipsticks: at first, it was the packaging (anyone else remember those clear twist-up bullets?), then it was the shades (there are some ridiculously gorgeous ones), but in reality, it’s all about the formula.

Comfortable and smooth, the Rouge Unlimited formula wears well on my dry lips, and applies without a hitch even over dry patches. It’s less pigmented than I was expecting–not quite opaque–and wears with a natural shine. Because of the formula (glossy and moisturizing,) the wear is a little on the shorter end of the spectrum, but it’s very comfortable within that timeframe.

And (here’s the part that really sells me) the formula is completely scent- and taste-free. I love a scent-free lip!

karl x shu rouge unlimited lipstick packaging

Karl x Shu Luxe Burgundy, Mon Shu Red, and Celebrity Beige (L-R)

The shades: All three of these shades have microshimmer in them, adding to the glossy effect. It’s most evident in Celebrity Beige (I think it’d be stellar as a creme finish) and least in Mon Shu Red, but it is present in all of them.

shu uemura rouge unlimited lipstick swatches

shu uemura Rouge Unlimited Lipstick swatches in Luxe Burgundy, Mon Shu Red, and Celebrity Beige

Celebrity Beige

The most natural of this collection, Celebrity Beige is a surprisingly wearable nude. Despite its peachy undertones, I find it fits well with my cool-toned complexion, and it translates just as easily on warmer skintones — Christine (Temptalia) has it reviewed and worn here.

shu uemura celebrity pink rouge unlimited swatch makeup look

Luxe Burgundy

I love a vampy lip, and Luxe Burgundy is an absolutely gorgeous varient thereof. A medium-opacity wine with plenty of brown undertones to keep the colour looking muted (but still bold), it has a little more shimmer than I’d like (still much less noticeable than that in Celebrity Beige), and leaves a bit of a stain as it wears away.

Like many semi-opaque dark shades, it can apply a little patchily, but I don’t find I have too many problems once I give a few minutes to “settle in.” Be sure not to slide your lips together overly much and you should be good!

shu uemura rouge unlimited swatch luxe burgundy

Mon Shu Red

The most attention-grabbing of the Karl for Shu lipsticks, Mon Shu Red has the least noticeable shimmer… and the most noticeable pigment. It’s a bright strawberry-red, a little slippery and hard to catch on film. Against my skin, it’s almost fluorescent, and I can see it as a standout summer shade.

The same rules apply to Mon Shu Red as to Luxe Burgundy for wear.

shu uemura mon shu red swatch makeup look

The verdict?

At $30 USD/$31 CAD, I probably should not love these as much as I do. After all, they’re not fully opaque, and the wear isn’t perfect… but it is very good (if a little short and slippery), and the shades are absolutely stunning.

If you’re on the market for a great scent-free lipstick–which can be so hard to find,–be sure to check these out. The Karl Lagerfeld for shu uemura Holiday 2012 collection is still available on the shu uemura website, and even once these shades are gone, I still think the formula is worth a look!

Keep reading! »

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