During the past years I have been utterly seduced by beautiful high-end products and innovative packaging designs, I splurge with the idea of using all of them although clearly I won’t manage to use up everything !
I did rave about these products in the past but there is also a dark side to them that I sometimes only notice afterwards, when facing a more intense daily usage. If I didn’t care about the product itself, I would simply not repurchase it. However, the items I will show you below are items that I will repurchase no matter what -providing I can still find them and I can afford it- because the product is so good that I am ok to compromise and I will find a way to live with the inconvenience incurred. But, love doesn’t always need to come with pain !!! so if there is any way for the Companies to neutralize this pain, I certainly encourage it !
The purpose of this post is to :
- share some tips and tricks in case you are experiencing the same situation with similar products, if you do and you have some advice please also share back with us!
- marketing teams are sometimes scanning for reviews or for feedback from customers, if you have an opinion on these items, either agree or disagree, please also kindly share !
Below some incriminated products that make me question their design, you may recognize some of them :
If you have been reading the recent comments, you may know that yesterday I received a few new brushes, 6 bought on the Tanseido website and 3 on the Rakuten website. In the afternoon I managed to also buy a funny brush but you’ll know more if you get to the end of the post…
My research at the moment is specially targeting :
- Mac 239 dupes
- Small (tiny) and very soft laydown brushes
- Suqqu dupes
- Big eyeshadow brushes OR small cheek brushes
- Foundation brushes
With that in mind, I ordered the following brushes :
I have to say that my (and our) determination is transforming our research for exceptional brushes into a fun an scarily easy process…
I don’t know about you, but here in Switzerland you can clearly feel that summer 2012 is over.
I thought I would write a post on products I have been using the most during the last season, this can involve LE items, older season items, early fall releases… I just took all the products that have been used and loved the most and here they are :
I used to pack too much makeup in the past but I am getting better, this time I really have to pack even lighter, I don’t have the choice since we are leaving on our motorbikes. Not my favorite means of transport but next year I will do something more “me”, maybe New York or the Maldives ?
I started packing, even though I could absolutely leave home only with my moisturizer, my mascara and my lip balm, I decided to pack some more things, still too many but let’s see what I can do…, so far it sums up to :
A sweet follower asked me what I could recommend her that would be similar to the Mac Desires and Devices, well, I had so much to talk about that I thought I could use a little post
I think many of us are drawn to complex shades, I am addicted to taupes… but here I will try to show Helen, and you, some green-gold-bronze type of shadows.
Helen, I hope this will help you in your hunt for the perfect green-gold-bronze eyeshadow or pencil
In this picture, there are some similar products that could come close to that Mac Desires and Devices liner, others would need a little help but I will explain :
The Mac Buried Treasure is a great long-lasting pencil eyeliner, I love to use it, it’s actually nearly all the time in my daily makeup bag. It’s quite similar to the Mac Desires and Devices and if you put Chantecaille Sel on top of it, the result gets even a bit more complex, when I wear Mac Buried Treasure on the outer eye, I extend the liner in the inner corner with a bit of Sel eyeshadow, gets lighter in the inner corner of the eye and darker in the outer corner… you get the idea, a gradient application. I always keep it very thin, if needed I will use a smudge brush to apply the pencil very close to the eyelashes.
Some years ago I felt it was time to upgrade my makeup products and adapt my makeup routine, I sat at the Trish McEvoy counter one day and they told me what I was doing wrong. They kept on saying “Now you have to… Now you cannot..” it was a bit upsetting because I had to face the fact that I wasn’t 20 anymore and I was also sad because I loved shimmery and metallic textures and daring looks. However, when I left their counter that day, I looked much younger and refreshed, they weren’t wrong at the end
I am in my 40′s and it’s now a necessity for me to pay attention to what makeup I wear and how I wear it, these are my eyeshadow rules and recommendations :
- Find the right texture, not too powdery, not too shimmery, if you see that the texture accentuates the wrinkles and settles into the lines, upgrade your makeup to a more appropriate eyeshadow finish
- Place the dark colors at the right place, use smaller and more precise brushes
- Blend well and define without harsh lines
- Find the colors and the looks that are the best for you, “Less is more” is definitely the best way to go, but with the right products and right techniques there is no reason you could not afford a more dramatic look
- Always use a primer, it will help to prevent the eyeshadow from sliding into the fine lines and I choose a primer that is lighter than my foundation (Laura Mercier, Trish or UD Eden)
- After applying the eyeshadow, if I find that the result is too shimmery and not appropriate, I take a cotton a go softly over the eyeshadow application, it really does help to remove that over shimmery-looking effect when I don’t have time to start over.
- I sometimes use secret-weapon products like the Trish Line Refiner for around the eyes orthe Chantecaille Lip contour for around the lips…
- Last but it’s actually the most important advice I could give you : use good make up brushes !
The eyeshadows I will show you here are mattes, satin, some are even more shimmery but they all are extremely forgiving and flattering, I have tried to pick mostly mattes but I really love a more luminous and silky finish so there’s a bit of everything :
Most of them are extremely expensive brands, you can find less expensive brands that also work well but here I am talking about ultimate results and most of the time you will have to pay the price for that.
Some of these palettes might be discontinued and I am really sorry about that, but, it will show them to you anyway, this will give you an idea of what the brand has and if one day you come across some sale or outlet, then you may even find them at a good price. If I mention them here, it’s because I highly recommend them and I am hoping that if they are not available anymore, the Brand will re-promote them or add them into their permanent collection.
I was finally able to get my hands on the Rouge Bunny Rouge 012 Contour brush, every time I wanted to order it, it happened to be sold out… is that because it’s really that good ?
So here it is now and since I have the other two RBR face brushes, I take this opportunity to briefly review the three Rouge Bunny Rouge face brushes together.
If you don’t know it already, RBR make wonderful eyeshadows and blushes, expensive, but you’ll love them. Their makeup brushes are not bad at all but if you had the possibility to try Japanese brands like Hakuhodo, Koyudo, Chikuhodo, Suqqu, you’ll find that it’s quite difficult to find better elsewhere.
Face powder 001 – Goat hair
Base of the ferrule : 2,5cm, hair length : 5cm
Rouge Bunny Rouge claims to be targeting the “true seekers of beauty”
In an era when most brands are concerned with following the trend, we provide something quite different; a thoughtfully balanced palette of colours, for true seekers of beauty, who choose beauty over brand name or fad.
I am looking for a blush that enhances my cheeks, that doesn’t shout blush, with a matte but not powdery finish and with Rouge Bunny Rouge I am in the right place.
I actually find the packaging practical and trendy but for the price tag it could be a little bit more luxurious… or it could contain a bit more product !
The case is 1cm high, 5.5cm diameter with a big mirror inside, it contains 3.5g of product for 25 Gbp (I think, because I got mine without VAT so it reduces the price to Gbp 20.83). An European version of a Chanel blush is 4g and costs 31Gbp, now you know that Rouge Bunny Rouge is a very expensive brand indeed !
I am sad but also lucky they don’t have more shades available because I would be tempted to buy them all ! Today I have all their shades from their Original Skin blush range.
I stick white labels with the names on the side because of the way I store them, it helps me to pick them up more easily.
Rouge Bunny Rouge started in Russia in 2006 and even if I find their prices too high, I find most of their products to be extremely good and worth the price tag.
I like the RBR description, it really makes you want to have them
Original Skin Blush blends with a sheer, silky touch for a naturally luminous glow. A medley of active ingredients, including Uhaloa from Hawaii, also known as Velvet-leaf and modern technologies impart a long term brightening effect. Indian Gooseberry Fruit Extract stands guard against free radicals. Sheer pearls amplify the creamy soft touch and ensure a limpid glow. Innovative powders entwine with your skin to preserve perfection all day long.
Result is your skin but better; you’ll wonder how you blushed before…
I just wanted to show you the difference between these two amazing black eye liner pencils. They are both black, they both last forever, but there is just a “little” difference in the blending and the intensity.
The Rouge Bunny Rouge Salome is much more black, more intense, but it’s also more difficult to blend, if you apply it and you want a blended or smudged application, you have to do it WHILE applying, you cannot wait 2 seconds, it will set and don’t give you a second chance.
With their new Spring 2012 look “Nest of Plenty“, Rouge Bunny Rouge are launching a new range of eyeshadows in a refill format.
They are also launching a pallet concept with a Duo and Trio Eye Shadow Keeper, I cannot show them to you here today since I did not order them, but at this moment I have other alternatives to keep the eyeshadows.
This collection consists of 9 refills, six are new shades and the other three are from their current bestselling range (I did not order Unforgettable Oriole so instead, I will show you the one I already had) :
The new shades :
- Lilac Reef Curassow – Pale lilac with iridescent effect
- Trumpeter Koel – Dark lead-grey with lilac-blue iridescence
- Bohemian Waxwing – Iridescent bronzed champagne
- Olive Violetear – Smokey Olive with a satin finish
- Golden Rhea – Iridescent pale gold, pure and simple
- Umber Firefinch – Iridescent dark umber chocolate
The “repromotes” of the best-selling shades :
- Unforgettable Oriole – Delicate, metallic white gold
- Solstice Halcyon – Semi-matt mauve beige
- Abyssinian Catbird – Metallic bronze with golden highlights
This is how they are packaged :
You may want to be careful when opening the refill since the pan may slide out and fall.
Rouge Bunny Rouge delivers excellent eyeshadow quality. If you are eager to find the best quality matte eyeshadows, you cannot go wrong with Rouge Bunny Rouge and I totally recommend you splurge on this brand.
I don’t think it’s easy to create a matte finish that is nicely pigmented without being chalky, muddy or streaky. These matte eyeshadows from RBR have all the qualities you are looking for in a matte formula, plus, they are long-lasting and easy to blend on their own or together with other textures.
The only reason why I don’t use them more often today is because you can not buy them in refills and put them in your palettes, but, this is finally changing… they have just released new eyeshadows in a refill format : “Nest of Plenty“, with some new shades and some other picked from their current range. I have ordered them and will be swatching and reviewing them for you during this next weekend.
At the bottom of this post, I will also add some swatches of the non-matte RBR eyeshadows I own today so that you can have an idea of the beautiful shades they have in their current collection.
On to the RBR matte collection … only 6 shades are available. Their RBR description is spot on :
- Papyrus Canary : Semi-opaque palest creamy beige
- Chestnut-napped Apalis : Semi-opaque chestnut puree with a hint of cocoa dust
- Grey go-away Lourie : Semi-opaque smokey slate grey
- Blackpepper Jay : Semi-opaque smokey black brown
- Bashful Flamingo : Semi-opaque pale powder pink looking ultra natural and fresh on the eye
- Sweet Dust Seriema : Semi-opaque cool dusty mauve taupe
These creamy Feline Gaze eye pencils are available in 3 shades :
- Salome : intense matte black
- Calypso : jet black base with light pure silver and aqua blue reflection
- Lola : metallic dark brown with light copper reflections
Three things to remember :
- They are very expensive, 4 Gbp more expensive than a Chanel, 5 Gbp more than a Nars Larger than Life
- They are not waterline safe
- They are automatic, you can twist them up but you cannot twist them back down…
The quality is much better than a Chanel or a Dior waterproof, they are creamier and more long-lasting but the colors are not that unique to me and you can find similar colors out there at a cheaper price.
You can smudge them immediately after application but don’t wait otherwise you will not be able to smudge them at all, they will stay put for the day and even longer…
I am always in the hunt for the best lip liner, I love when after 4 to 5 hours I can still see the definition and the color on my lips, I am very happy if they last that long since I am always playing with my lips, drinking or talking too much
I can finally say that I am happy with the ones I own, they have very decent long-lasting wear and I consider them flattering for my skin tone.
I use them to fill my lips entirely, as a base for a lipstick or a gloss. They need to be non-drying, drink-proof and if possible, kiss-proof… better be ready
I have 5 lip liners that I reach for all the time, I will show you my 5 top favorites but also some of the ones that I like but I don’t wear as often.
These are my top 5 favorites :
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Esteban
- Make Up for ever 1C
- Chanel Naturel
- By Terry Rosy Nude
- Chanel Bois de Rose
A picture with my favorites and the others that I also enjoy wearing :
From left to right :
- Nars Rue Bonaparte (to line the outer lips for better definition)
- Mac Beurre (to contour)
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Esteban : flesh toned peach, RBR describes it as “metallic” but it has a natural shiny finish on my lips.
- Make Up For Ever 1C : light neutral beige, matte finish, lasts forever …
- Chanel Natural 34, beige, pinky-nude, satin finish, goes with everything and very very good long-lasting power.
- By Terry Rosy Nude, well… rosy-nude color… matte finish, flattering and long-lasting.
- Chanel Bois de Rose, deep rose with some red, the finish is more satin than matte to me, I find it extremely flattering, it brightens my whole face and has become my HG. Very long-lasting, released with the Spring 2012 collection but I have been told it will be permanent… Thank God !
- Edward Bess Natural, the finish is like a creamy satin and very comfortable, it’s supposed to be an universal shade, I like it but I think it has a bit too much brown for filling my lips with, and I don’t use it often since the color does not last at all on my lips.
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Vasco, cherry blossom powder pink, matte-satin finish on my lips, like all the RBR, this one is very long-lasting, will be gorgeous for a pinky-nude lipstick for the summer !
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Marco, medium cool raspberry, pure-matte they say in RBR site but the finish is not like MUFE C1, this one still has like a satin finish to me… I use it with darker lipsticks or to define the contour a little more precisely when I need to.
- Rouge Bunny Rouge Roald, pale mauve, pure-matte, they say again, but to me it’s like it has kind of a satiny finish.
- Catrice Lost in the Rosewood 030, it’s the cheapest of all, delivers a very natural color, with a satiny finish, but does not last that long on my lips.
- N7 Nude 20, Lisa Eldridge created this color for N7, she wanted the perfect nude lip liner and that’s what it is. The only problem is that it does not last long on my lips unfortunately.
None of them are drying on my lips, they are all comfortable and most of them very long-lasting.
Swatches of all of them together :
I am not a make up artist and my opinions are only based on my personal experience with the brands I tried. I love make up brushes and after a few years into make up, I have gathered a few of them. The day I discovered that a good make up brush could make a significant difference in a make up application I was intrigued and started to build my collection.
I have taken pictures of the brushes that I love the most and that I use regularly, for each category I highlight my very favorites and tell you why I love them so much. The same brush may be pictured in different categories since I try to get the most of each one of them. I apologize it’s a bit long and mixed up…
I have extremely dry and sensitive skin, only a few moisturizers work for me and of course the ones that work are extremely expensive. On a daily basis I use the Laura Mercier Repair creme without SPF. Before discovering this moisturizer I could not wear foundation at all, even foundations for dry skin, I had dry patches and flakes within 2 hours of application.
I prefer to apply my foundation with a sheer coverage, sometimes medium coverage but either way I always aim to achieve a glowy look and I don’t usually powder afterwards.
When I wake up, even after the shower, my skin is still really sensitive, using a soft brush on my eyelids and my face made a big difference in my daily routine, the application is so relaxing and smooth, and that’s why I love soft brushes so much.
These are the make up brands that I use the most :
- Rouge Bunny Rouge
- Tom Ford
- Le Metier de Beaute
- By Terry
- Shu Uemura
I will always try to use products and techniques that don’t emphasize my wrinkles or that don’t look heavy or cakey, I am not a make up artist, my opinions are only based on my personal experience.
Foundation, buffing and stippling
In the picture below, you will see my favorite foundation brushes :
I’ll try to give you some examples with some of the foundations I love to wear :
- For mineralize cream foundation (Mac) : Real Techniques stippling brush or RM Radiance
- For liquid foundation (Tom Ford, Burberry, BB, Laura Mercier, By Terry, etc) : RM Radiance, Hakuhodo G5556 4mm, Sigma F80 or Coastal Scents Bionic. With the Radiance, no need to buff afterwards but with the others I still like to buff with the Mac 187 or any other similar stippling brush, even though it’s not really always necessary.
- For very liquid foundation (Mac or Make Up For Ever face and body) : LY 34, I noticed the bristles suck a lot of foundation but with a very liquid foundation that’s the one I would reach for, mainly for body foundation.
- For mineralize powder foundation (Bare Escentuals) : Coastal Scents Bionic for a flawless and heavier coverage and Chanel 1 for a more natural sheer to medium coverage.
My top favorite is the Rae Morris Radiance, the finish is like an airbrushed application. The price is high but worth it and I could live only with this brush.
If I see “Long-Lasting” or “Waterproof” on any kind of make up, I will try it and if I really like it, I will invest. I hate to have to reapply make up during the day and since I go to work on my motorbike during spring and summer, and even sometimes winter, I need the best smudge proof and waterproof make up. I started with the shade Roald and I was addicted.
In the Zuneta website, where you can order them, this is what Rouge Bunny Rouge says about them :
Advanced technology in this longwearing pencil delivers a formula with an instant release of intense colour, smooth glide-on and a precise application.
The synergic action of gellified systems, special polymers and waxes provides a most comfortable and semi-permanent colour. Once dry, the colour will last the whole day and is waterproof too!
These incredibly indelible lip pencils have been matched to your lips (as we all know, we match liners to the lips, not the lipsticks).