Depending on where you buy your Chanel eyeshadow quads “Les 4 Ombres“, or blushes “Joues Contraste“, the texture and pigmentation will be different, there’s one “USA” version, and there’s another one for the rest of the world (Canada, Asia, Europe, …).
I have tried to find the reason why there is such a big difference in exactly the same products, so far without success. Here in Switzerland they aren’t even aware of a different version released specially for the USA… . But, I don’t give up easily and I will find out ! Some say that in Europe or Asia we tend to prefer a more sheer and subtle application, but every single Chanel make up lover I met till now, prefer the more pigmented USA releases. Even in Asia, Canada, Germany or anywhere else, when they know about this difference, they would rather pick the non-baked and more pigmented USA formula.
At some point I thought maybe the ingredients (regulations in the countries) could be the reason, but I don’t think so…
Some brands, like Dior for example, sometimes launch additional or completely different products depending on the countries, for example with their collection “Electric Tropics”, in the Diorskin Nude Glow, we had two bronzers in Europe but Dior launched a beautiful highlighter, in that same collection, exclusive to Asia : the First Light Nude Glow in 003.
But for Chanel, and for these Les 4 Ombres quads and the Joues Contraste blushes, the names are the same but the texture is completely different.
If you are interested in exclusive Asia releases or if you missed out on some Limited Edition collections, sometimes I buy my products at www.izzysbeautyshoppe.com, that’s were I got the Dior First Light in case you are interested.
CHANEL – LES 4 OMBRES
Chanel quads in the USA have square eyeshadow pans, if you buy the quads anywhere else in the world, the pans are round and their formula is baked. Both formulas are smudge-proof and can be applied dry for subtle shading, or dampened for more intense colour.
In the USA version, the product you get in the quad weights 6.8 g (0.24 oz).
The cases are identical size-wise but inside, the space reserved for the applicators is located at the bottom for the USA version and on the right-hand side for the other versions (see first pic above).
The sponge applicators are black (one is thinner and therefore will allow you to draw a nice thin line)
Made in France.
Rest of the World specifications
You’ll get 1.2 g (0.04 oz), since this formula is baked maybe you will get the same amount of product at the end… but the weight difference is huge.
The two sponge applicators are white, both the same.
Made in France too.
I was only able to find a list of ingredients for this release, I am not even sure (copied from Sasa.com site) : Talc, paraffinum liquidum, lanolin alcohol, magnesium aluminum silicate, bentonite, aluminum hydroxide, methyparaben, zea mays, propylparaben, BHT, ascorbl palmitate.
I remember that the first eyeshadow quad I bought from Chanel was the European release of “Les 4 Ombres : Sparkling Satins“, it was so glittery, the glitter could not stay put and it had no color payoff. I was really disappointed and gave it away.
When I found out that the quads were different in the USA, I ordered Les 4 Ombres in Mystic Eyes… great start, I loved it, it’s one of my favorite Chanel quads today.
This week, I was shopping in my favorite perfume and make up shop in Switzerland and Aurelie, a make up artist working in that great shop, asked me if I wanted some help… I told her I was looking for the best quality quad of the Chanel Les 4 Ombres and ended by telling her why I needed it… basically only to write this post because I was planning to give it away to my mum or to a friend afterwards. She told me I could just simply borrow two testers in order to take pictures of them swatched side by side. How great is that ? I already had the two versions of the Prelude at home and thanks to her, I can show you the Kaska Beige and Mystic Eyes, both versions swatched together.
Colors : cool shimmery light pink, neutral shimmery gray taupe, warm, shimmery gold brown, shimmery plum brown
This quad is one of the most flattering I have, I can wear it anytime, day or night, to work to to create a beautiful and threatening sultry and smokey eye. I have dark green eyes, it makes them pop and I love the dark color and the greyish taupe.
On the left the USA version, on the right the “RotW” (rest of the world…) version.
Sometimes the colors are very close, but the greyish taupe shades are completely different as you can see in the swatches !
I have tried to swatch the RotW version wet on the far left but I still prefer the USA pigment intensity, even dry, and to be honest I don’t want to be forced to wet an eyeshadow in order to get some color payoff, not at that price !
Some RotW versions if you don’t use them damp, you just won’t see much color at all.
I like to rub my arm with a paper tissue after I have taken the pictures and then check out the stains left behind, if any… I believe USA wins but the dark color and the pink color on the RotW version are very vibrant and I like them a lot.
Colors : almost matte ivory beige, mauved brown with a satin finish, shimmery plummed dark brown, shimmery coppery tan.
The color payoff of the RotW version is so sheer compared to the USA one, the beige you can barely see it, the others I had to swatch them very heavily so that they would show.
USA stains win again
I could not think of a better name for this *preciousss*…. I love it so much that I bought the US and the EU and if there were any other breed anywhere else in the world I would also get it….
Colors : Taupe, cream, beige, dark purple… Both US and EU quads are to die for.
If you get up in the morning and you don’t know what kind of day you will have to undergo, just grab this palette. It’s so easy to wear that you won’t have any additional stress thinking about your look. The colors are beautiful, the most perfect combination.
That taupe in the top-left corner is so gorgeous ! I can wear it all year round, day or night…
Both versions have nice pigmentation, the dark color in the RotW is even slightly more vibrant than the USA one. This quad is worth having whatever the version but I still prefer the USA one though…
Lisa Eldridge recently uploaded a video where she recreates for us the look she realized on Kate Winslet Red Carpet in April 2012, and she is using the Euro version of this Prelude, you can watch this video here
The stains left behind are not bad at all for both quads, and on the eyes this quad lasts all day with a base.
The applicators included in the quads are different as well, both end in the bin… The USA ones are more useful since you can draw a line with the thinner one if you like, but they are too big for their little place inside the quad and each time you open the quad they end everywhere.
The Joues Contraste blushes
The blushes may look similar from the distance, from far far away… but the formula of the USA JC is not a baked formula and the color payoff is also different. I love both versions, but I consider them as two completely different blushes. On my skin, the Rest of the World formula lasts a bit longer, some USA blushes can feel chalky on my skin, but some RotW blushes can be just way too frosty, so it’s a matter of preference.
If you don’t know if your version is a baked one, look at the sides of the blush, on the non-baked version you can see the border of the metallic pan.
These two Espiègle are totally different blushes.. Espiègle “RotW” is more like a pink-coral frosty highlighter, frosty but gorgeous. I love to wear this one in the summer, on top of my bronzer, gives a really fresh glow on bronzed skin.
The weight is very different as you can see in the picture, 6g for the US version, 4g for the other, it does not mean you get less product since the product is baked, also you may need more baked product in order to build up more color… You should really get the version you like and not depending on the amount you would get for the price.
Both are made in France.
Again I love both versions, but even if the color looks similar on the swatches, on the skin it looks different, I prefer the RotW release but many friends prefer the USA one.
The USA version is slightly darker on my skin and the other RotW version seems more appropriate for my fair to medium skin.
Color : dirty coral-peach with soft, golden shimmer, the tiny gold sparkles of shimmer show up in both versions.
These are heavy swatches of both blushes side by side. I own both versions of these, but to me they are completely different.
The stains of the USA version are sheerer this time :
The applicators are different as well. In the USA version they are brown and thin. But in the other two baked rows of blushes below, the applicators are not the same… either brown with a wider handle or black with a thinner handle…
I never use these tiny brushes included in the compacts but since I have a few of them I may also show what you would get …
The eyeshadow pigmentation is so different that I recommend you the USA version.
For the blushes, it depends on the blush, sometimes the ones we get in Europe are too frosty, I prefer to try them and consider the two versions as two different blushes with the same name… and providing two completely different results.
Please let me know what your thoughts are on these Chanel products, and if by any chance you know the reason why Chanel decided to go different, I would love to finally know ! Any additional information would be really helpful.
Thank you for reading