Giorgio Armani

Giorgio Armani has revamped their iconic Sheer Blush this year with the old range being discontinued. The new range is called Cheek Fabric Blush and I picked up the pinks 500 POP and 507 FLESH, and the peachy pinks 306 ATTITUDE and 502 SKIN. I love their Sheer Blushes for the quality, but I am also pleased to see this new range as they certainly look more appealing in the aspect of packaging as well as color choices.

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The new Cheek Fabric Blush is housed in a glossy black lacquer case with an incase mirror. First impression was that it is a lot smaller than the previous version – it only has 4 grams of product whereas the Sheer Blush was 6 grams. The con is that it retails for the same price but you get much less product (as with everything else these days…), and the pro is that it is more compact and portable to carry.

It has the silkiest and smoothest texture you can ever get from a blush, and it is ultra finely milled as with all Armani makeup so it looks very light and easy to blend on the skin. In terms of finish, the Cheek Fabric applies slightly more vibrant and brighter, so if you think the old range was too sheer you will be happy with the color payoff of this one. It retains its signature seamless flush of color look with a lit-from-within soft glow, which means it wold never look patchy and heavy with a visible edge line/border.

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The new colors that I picked are quite similar to the old ones (as you can see in my below swatches). Nevertheless they are really beautiful everyday colors (particuarly the pinks), and I am sure I will get frequent use out of these.

500 POP (Limited Edition) is an angelic matte milky pink with no shimmer. Compared to Sheer Blush 12 it leans more of a neutral pale pink, and can be used either as blush for fair complexion, or as an overall beauty powder that gives a sheer wash of soft pink glow to the cheeks.

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507 FLESH is a bright candy pink with micro gold shimmer which doesn’t show up on the skin.  This is a must-have color from this new collection for me!

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306 ATTITUDE is a bright peachy pink with silver shimmer. The color is similar to Sheer Blush 10 but leans slightly more coral. This is a universally flattering color that would look lovely on anyone (think about Nars Orgasm…)

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502 SKIN is a softer version of peachy pinky with micro silver shimmer. It looks very similar to Sheer Blush 02 in the pan but goes on more vibrant and has a stronger pink undertone.

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This is a FOTD/Selfie wearing the Cheek Fabric 502 SKIN which was taken with my new selfie camera CASIO TR35. If you follow me on Instagram you would know I just spent a ridiculous amount of money on this camera. It wasn’t love at first sight as I had really high expectations on it but I am starting to love it more and more as I get to know how to operate this camera better. I will definitely post a proper review for the camera in the coming weeks.

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Overall the new range has better color pay off and feel silkier than the Sheer Blushes. The quality difference is not that significant compared to the Sheer Blush as they were already superior to begin with, however they are worthy to collect as the new generation blush from Giorgio Armani. The Cheek Fabric is available at Nordstrom, and you can still get hold of the Sheer Blushes on Neiman Marcus online in the US.

 

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Coming Soon!

January 17, 2014

 

1. Nars Final Cut Blush New Attitude – My heart skipped a few beats when I saw the preview of  Nars Final Cut Collection – it’s all about Pink! After playing with the testers for some time, I ended up with these two items. Check out the swatches of the entire Final Cut collection on The Make-Up Blogette. Nordstrom has a tutorial video on this collection.

2. Nars Final Cut Skin Illuminator Adelaide

3. Suqqu Concealer 01 – I heard so many good things about the white concealer as a highlighter!

4. Suratt Automatique Lip Crayon POC – A new makeup brand only available at Barneys. This is my first product from this line as I always have faith in the quality of the beauty products from Barneys. Check out reviews and swatches on Wondegondigo. Have you tried anything from Suratt? I would love to hear your thoughts :-)

5. Giorgio Armani Flash Lacquer 520 – I rushed to the store and got these beautiful glosses after I read the review on The Beauty Look Book!

6. Giorgio Armani Flash Lacquer 522

7. Tom Ford Lip Color Indian Rose – I bought thes lipstick with the gloss because the combo looked so beautiful on the gorgeous Tom Ford SA.

8. Tom Ford Ultra Shine Lip Gloss Sahara Pink

 

Deal Alert! Neiman Marcus is currently offering $50 off any $200 purchase with promo code JAN50 and free shipping to Australia which I think is pretty fantastic (offer ends this Friday)! So I got myself this one…Yay!

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This is the look I have been wearing for the past week. It is refreshing to switch from my usual preferred color palette of pink and cool neutrals to a warmer look, and what could be a better palette to use than my new Chanel Pearl River Eye Shadow Palette from the Hong Kong Collection (reviewed here). The overall look is peach for a natural day look, which is inspired by some of the makeup looks I have seen in Korean beauty magazines lately. I always find that a natural looking makeup requires more skill and effort to master. But once you get it right it just looks so beautiful and fresh on any woman, and best of all it helps to take away a few years of age!

In this FOTD, I have spent a lot of time and products creating the base – I wanted to achieve a fresh, dewy and almost barely-there base so that my own skin texture shows through. On the other hand subtle contouring was applied to mimic the natural shadow so my face won’t look too flat. Once this was achieved, everything else was straight forward – just applied light layers of colors to enhance the features.

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Face Products Used:

Brush 1: Giorgio Armani blender brush

Brush 2: Becca concealer brush

Brush 3: Suqqu face brush

Step 1: By Terry Teint De Rose as Primer, then MAC Mineralize Moisture Foundation (reviewed here) applied with brush 1

Step 2: Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage followed by YSL Touche Eclat #1 applied with brush 2 for under-eyes concealing.

Step 3: Becca Finishing Powder applied with brush 3 over the t-zone.

Eye Products:

Brush 1: MAC 227

Brush 2: Stila Precision Brush

Brush 3: CHIKUHODO Z-10 (reviewed here)

Brush 4: Suqqu Eyeshadow Brush F

Brush 5: Suqqu Eyeshadow Brush L (reviewed here)

Brush 6: Nars #12

Step 1: With the Chanel Pearl River Palette, applied the gold shade with brush 5, then added the peach color along upper lash line with brush 4. Use brush 6 to apply the chocolate brown on the outer v. The champagne color is applied under the brow bone with brush 1.

Step 2: Applied the peach shade along the lower lash using brush 3, then added the brown to the outer corner. Brush 2 is used to add the pearly white color on the inner corner.

Step 3: Applied Majolica Automatic Eyeliner, and finished with Cover Girl Clump Free Mascara.

Step 4: Filled the brows using Shu Uemura Hard Formula H9.

Cheeks and Lips:

Brush 1: CHIKUHODO GS2 Contour and Highlight Brush

Brush 2: Suqqu Cheek Brush (reviewed here)

Step 1. Applied Nars Multiple Tint in Turks & Caicos with Coffret D’OR Blush on the cheeks using brush 2.

Step 2: Maquillage Face Creater 3D in #55 is used for highlight and contour with brush 1.

Step 3: Bobbi Brown Lip Color in Salmon finished with Lunasol Clear Lip Gloss.

One more pic!

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I find contouring is particularly challenging for everyday makeup. I have tried different ways of contouring my face over the years, and I have finally figured out a way that enhances my typical Asian bone structure. The reason I said that is because if you are an Asian like me – you would probably realize by now that there are a lot of makeup tricks that work on other races but do not work on Asians/Orientals. That’s because our bone structure, facial features and skin tone are completely different to that of Caucasians, so one solution does not fit all..

To make contouring work, you really need to study your face and this exercise is more important than the amount of tutorials you watch/read. I have made a few generalization of standard Asian features which might apply to some of you.

Cheekbones: Asians generally have a bigger, flatter and wider face (sad but true…) Contouring cheekbones is never a mainstream makeup application as the highest point of our cheekbones is already over the nose bridge. Hands up how many times you have given up a pair of sunnies because it is sitting on your cheekbones rather than on your nose bridge?! Whereas for the Caucasians it is the other way around. The placement of our cheekbone is slightly different too. They are normally more prominent (slightly protruding) on the side of the face (below the temple areas), whereas Caucasians’ cheekbones are more prominent to the front.

Jaw: The gold standard of Asian beauty is that we don’t want chiseled jaws. We want a v-shaped face!

Nose: Kindergarten knowledge! Asian noses are much flatter, lacking of a prominent nose bridge, with a rounder or wider nose tip.

So based on the above ‘general Asian features’, I have put together this contouring tutorial.

STEP 1:

Cheekbones: Apply the contouring product starting from the hollow of the cheekbones all the way up to the temples. More product is applied on the side of the cheekbone for a slimmer face effect.

Nose: Apply the contouring product starting from where your eyebrow begins to fake a v-shape for the nose bridge. Bring it all the way down to the bottom of the nose for a more refined nose tip. I also applied a bit of product along the nostrils for a slimmer nose effect.

Jaws: Apply the contouring product starting from the side of your chin up to the cheekbone. More product is applied to the side of the jaws.

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STEP 2:

Blend, blend and blend. I find that a good blending brush really makes a big difference to the result. Start light-handed, and do not apply too much contouring product in the first place. Start blending within a small area then blend the residual product outward – that way it gives a natural looking gradient of shading.

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STEP 3:

How much to blend is really your personal perference. I wish my face was that small (see pic)! I just blend the contouring shade to cover the areas covered under my hands.

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Final Result:

contouring-tutorial-for-asians-frb-step5Added cream blush to the apple of the cheeks

contouring-tutorial-for-asians-frb-step6BEFORE AND AFTER

Left: With foundation only – my face is looking flat without contouring and highlighting applied.

Right: Final look.

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Products Used: Tom Ford Shade & Illuminate Intensity One, with Giorgio Armani Blender brush. Reviews coming soon!

 

 

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I don’t get more excited than finding the perfect soft milky pink lipstick – meet my lipstick of the moment which is the Giorgio Armani Rouge d’Armani Sheers 505 from the skin lacquers collection. Finding a light pink shade that works for me is not an easy mission. Most milky pink can be a little tricky to pull off for Asians with a yellow skin tone. I have made a lot of mistakes in the past (used to wear the most unflattering pink on myself), so I am glad I am a little more “tasteful” now and I know how to work out the right pink for me.

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The Rouge D’armani Sheers, skin lacquers collection just landed in Australia , and 505 was the only shade that caught my eye instantly, as it reminded me of my all time favorite light pink lipstick The Shiseido Doll Pink (which is shown in the comparison picture below) . As the name suggests, the formulation is sheer (but not as sheer as Chanel Rouge Coco Shine) with a glossy finish. Two or three swipes are enough for the color to show. The texture is light and has a good slip, and feels quite hydrating on my dry lips with a longer than average lasting power (about 3-4 hrs) than most sheer lipsticks.

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Compared to the other light pink (slightly blue based) lipsticks:

From left to right: Rouge d’Armani 505; Shiseido Sheer Gloss Lipstick Doll Pink; MAC Victorian, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine Chance

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Overall Look:

Foundation: Laura Mercier Moisturizing Foundation

Eyes: Giorgio Armani ETK 29 Rose Titanium as a wash, and ETK 27 Oxidised Silver over the lid. (both shades are reviewed in this post)

Cheeks: Jill Stuart mix blush 105 sweet lock

giorgio-armani-eyes-to-kill-eye-shadow-29-27-Oxidised-Silve-rose-titanium-swatches-fotdI purchased mine at DJ for AUD$52. The collection is also available here online.

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I received a call from the Giorgio Armani SA that the Eyes To Kill Eye Shadows from the AQUA Collection arrived in Australia the day after I posted my beauty wishlist – perfect timing! After playing with the testers for about 20 minutes, I restrained myself to 3 shades for now – 27 Oxidised Silver, 28 Red Platine and 29 Rose Titanium. The entire collection is gorgeous but I thought I will make more use out of these shades compared to the others as they appear very wearable and “me”. The rest of the shades are more for a smokey look which are attractive but I have been rarely wearing dark eye shadows lately.

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There have been similar products released in the market by some cheaper brands, but I always have a soft spot for the Giorgio Armanis as they are the original. Especially when it comes to the presentation of the product, as each shade of Eyes To Kill appears to be made of multicolored and complex shimmery pigments which give a multi-dimensional finish, and I have not seen that in any other cheaper brand. They blend like a dream as well as last a whole day on my oily lids.  I generally prefer to use my fingers for application if I want to create a soft sparkly layer with a hint of color. Or to use my beloved MAC 217 if I want to pack on a decent layer of color.

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Eye Shadow Rose Titanium 29: Had I not seen it in real life I would have skipped it as I am usually scared of pink eye shadows. But Rose Titanium swatches beautifully, as it shows up as a pale pink that looks very flattering on my skin tone. It makes a great alternative to the usual beige-champagne base color which I am a little bored of now.

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Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Eye Shadow Oxidised Silver 27: It will be a sell-out. You can’t miss this one if you love taupe, and it has the perfect undertone of purple for me.

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Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Eye Shadow Red Platine 28 : It is another drop dead gorgeous neutral but complex shade. It shows up as a bronzy coppery gold on me with silver shimmer. I always wanted a shade like it in a portable glass pot so I can carry it with me easily.

giorgio-armani-eyes-to-kill-eye-shadow-Red-Platine-28-swatchGroup Swatches:

under the sun

giorgio-armani-eyes-to-kill-eye-shadow-27-28-29-Red-Platine-oxidised-silver-rose-titanium-swatchesIn the shade

giorgio-armani-eyes-to-kill-eye-shadow-27-28-29-Red-Platine-oxidised-silver-rose-titanium-swatches-1Blended out

giorgio-armani-eyes-to-kill-eye-shadow-27-28-29-Red-Platine-oxidised-silver-rose-titanium-swatches-2Compared to other ETKs

Top 28, 27, 29 Bottom: 15, 4 , 8

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Bottom Line: I think the color palette and the wearability of AQUA Collection surpasses all of its previous limited editions. It’s a versatile yet unique collection of eye shadows for the neutral lovers.

I bought these at David Jones for AUD$45 each. The new AQUA collection is also available here in the US.

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This is another post requested by my readers – A FOTD of dark smokey eyes paired with pale blush and lips. I hardly wear smokey eyes so I thought that was such a good idea for me to practice. I wanted to wear black eye shadows, and the Nars Pandora Duo Eye Shadow was the first one that came to my mind. I bought this duo many years ago when I was in the Nars phase, but had never worn them yet! So I am giving this duo a road test today.

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Pandora contains a matte black shade and a shimmery white shade, and it is regarded as one of the most iconic Nars duos (along with Rated R) to be collected. Surprisingly, it is not as difficult to wear as I thought. Both the black and white shades apply smoothly and evenly, and are easy to blend. It is very densely packed so I didn’t experience any fall out with this product using a fluffy blending brush (MAC 217).

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Face: I wanted my base makeup to look sheer and natural, so I opted for the Sunday Riley Tinted Moisturizer, and the Bobbi Brown Corrector for under eyes concealing. Then I set my makeup with the Tom Ford Translucent Finishing Powder.

Cheeks: A few swipes of Chanel Joues Contraste in Narcisse.

Eyes: Since Pandora is matte and can look flat on the eyes, I first used the Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill 13 Noifa for a sheer wash of color over the eye socket. This is my go-to product for quick  smokey eyes – it blends out beautifully with MAC 217 and the shimmer straight away creates a multi-dimensional layered effect without the need of applying 4 and 5 different shades! I then applied the black shade of Pandora starting from the lash line into the crease for a more dramatic effect. The white shade was added  under the brow bone to highlight.

Brows: They were done when preparing this eye brow tutorial, though this post shows the nose contour (step 5) better.

Lips: Applied with the Shiseido Sheer Gloss Lipstick in Doll Pink which is my favorite pale pink lipstick, then MAC Creme Sheen Glass in Partial Pink was layered on top. They go perfectly together!

More pictures:

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This post is inspired by some of my favorite bloggers who have done an extensive summary of the beauty products they loved the most in year 2011. I thought it was such a good idea to show you some of the amazing products that I came across last year (or years before..). As a beauty junkie I have way too many products to showcase so I will be breaking them into several posts, and today’s post is all about the best base makeup products that I have absolutely been in love with, and I am pretty sure my appreciation for them will be carried over to year 2012.

Unfortunately I haven’t had the time to review many products in this post yet, but I am sure they will appear sometime in the near future!

Best Makeup Primer: the award goes to By Terry Teint De Rose. The most luxurious primer I have ever used – the hydrating texture, the  scent and the pink rosy color just blows me away every time I use it.

by-terry-teint-de-roseBest Illuminating Makeup Base: the award goes to Dior Radiant Base. It gives a “your glow but better” effect.

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Best Tinted Moisturizer: the award goes to Sunday Riley Effortless Breathable Tinted Primer. One of their signature products. I was at Barneys shopping for Sunday Riley skincare, and I noticed there were so many (gorgeous) girls dropping by just to purchase this primer over a short time! So I had to have it and it is my holy grail makeup base now on a good skin day.

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Best BB Cream: the award goes to Dr Jart Blemish Base BB Cream, love the hydrating yet lightweight liquid texture.

dr-jart-water-fuse-blemish-base-balmBest Liquid Foundation: the award goes to Giorgio Armani Designer Lift Firming Foundation (reviewed here). I don’t know one single person who doesn’t love this foundation?!

giorgio-armani-designer-lift-smoothing-firming-foundationRunner up: Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation. This was my first high end foundation that I got it when I was in High School, and I was hooked on to it ever since. There is always a backup in my vanity drawer.

chantecaille-foundationBest Compact Foundation/Powder: the award goes to Tom Ford Translucent Finishing Powder. My new discovery and this is THE most finely milled powder I have ever used!

tom-ford-translucent-finishing-powderRunner Up: La Prairie Cellular Treatment Powder Foundation (old packaging). A little goes a long way and it gives a flawless coverage.

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Best Contouring Powder: the award goes to Suqqu Balancing Cheek in OSHAGECHA (the shade on the right). Provides a perfect subtle contouring that just blends in with my natural skin color.

Best Concealer: the award goes to Cle De Peau Concealer (have discussed in this post)

cle-de-peau-concealerBest Under Eye Brightening Concealer: the award goes to YSL Touche Eclat (have discussed in this post)

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Best Loose Powder: the award goes to La Mer Loose Powder. The most finely milled loose powder inthe market and gives a soft focus finish. This is my second tub and my first one lasted me a few years!

la-mer-the-loose-powderRunner Up: Cle de Peau Loose Powder. It has a slight pink tinge to it rather than totally translucent. Provides a brightening effect and a flawless finish.

cle-de-peau-loose-powderIf you haven’t read the 2011 picks by these beautiful bloggers yet, please do check them out.

Atelier Beauty’s 2011 Picks.

Delicate Hummingbird’s best picks for the foundations/powder/concealers 2011

Rouge Deluxe 2011 Loves and Thoughts

Miss Elaine-Nio Year 2011 Favorites, I am VERY sad to hear that she will no longer be blogging…

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