I just posted my Mall of America Haul of America video! Oh goodness... I did some shopping! One aspect of that video involved several palettes from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. It happened to be going on during the weekend I was visiting Minneapolis... so I picked up a few things! My haul was long and I didn't want to take a lot of extra time swatching- so I thought I'd give you a closer look at these sets on my blog! Keep an eye out for future reviews on these products and others!
Kevyn Aucoin - The Iconic Eye Set ($60, Nordstrom.com)
While I've enjoyed Kevyn Aucoin's beauty books, I've never tried his makeup! When I saw this kit, I thought it was worth trying. I mean, who doesn't want that gorgeous eye look on the packaging? I figured the "iconic eye" would be a good introduction to the line.
The kit included a little black pouch, an 5-pan eyeshadow palette, a full-size eye pencil, and a travel-size detail brush. How GORGEOUS is that eye palette? (I attempted to remove my finger smudges on it before this pic :)
This palette is labeled on the back as "Essential Palette #9"... and the outer packaging lists the shades, however I'm not entirely sure which shade is which. They're listed as: The Celestial Powder in Candlelight, The Sculpting Powder in Medium, The Shimmer Shadow in Rose Quartz, and The Matte Shadows in Light Bone #101 and Taupey Gray #105. The liner is the Eye Pencil Primatif in Basic Black (it has a smudge tip on the end).
I've been playing with these shadows a bit, and while I really like the matte brown, cream, and berry shades-- the shimmery shades aren't super pigmented or impressive. When used with a base, they seem to pop a little bit more, but otherwise I wasn't that thrilled with them. The liner was rich, creamy, and super black- which I liked. I also enjoy the little detail brush, however... is the whole kit worth $60? Maybe I set my sights too high... I was expecting incredible quality from all of the eyeshadows.
MAC Illustrated Face Kit by Rebecca Moses in Brown Smoke ($49.50, Nordstrom.com)
I think it's probably obvious that the adorable packaging drew me in on this one. The illustrations on the outside by fashion designer Rebecca Moses are super cute. I thought it was a really good value to be able to try so many generously-sized MAC products in one kit, including a blush, four eyeshadows, and two lipsticks. It all looked like the kind of shades I'd wear a lot and enjoy.
It's kind of hard to see, but this kit comes with a double-ended brush-- one end is an angled shadow brush, the other is a lip brush. The blush in Melba is a coral/peach. The eyeshadows include Orb (white), All That Glitters (shimmery beige), Smoked Sepia (satin brown), and Showstopper (matte dark brown). The lipsticks are a creamy coral in Ravishing (Cremesheen), and a nude in Myth (Satin).
Here you can see Melba blush on the left, the four shadows in the middle, and then the two lipsticks on the right (in the same configuration as the palette). Myth lipstick was the only product in this kit that I had tried before, so I was excited to test out these new (to me) shades. I was really impressed with all of the eyeshadows, except Showstopper (the matte dark brown) wasn't quite as rich as I expected- it actually felt a little dry. While Orb is technically a satin finish, it comes off rather matte and I love it. I don't know how I hadn't already tried All That Glitters either! Looks great with Smoked Sepia. While Myth lipstick isn't my favorite on it's own, I like combining it with the Ravishing lipstick. I apply Ravishing for an all over coral color, then pop the center of the lower lip with a bit of Myth. All in all, a very nice kit and all of the products create a very "harmonious" look on the face. One of the Nordstrom employees told me this was the kit she was most excited to try.
NARS 'Voulez-Vous' Cheek & Eye Palette ($59, Nordstrom.com)
Finally- a little something from NARS. I can count on one hand the amount of NARS products I've tried, so I was pretty pumped to find multiple NARS products in this kit for a relatively good price. This palette is just a little larger than the size of my iPhone.
I couldn't find the names of any of these products on the packaging, but did find the info online. The blushes in this palette are Deep Throat (far left), and Dolce Vita (far right). Kinda funny, since Dolce Vita is the only NARS blush I currently own... I thought this one looked similar when I was checking out this palette, and turns out it's the same! Fortunately, I LOVE my Dolce Vita blush, so I don't mind having more!
Here are some swatches! It's all swatched in the same layout as it appears in the palette. The website says these are signature shadows from the line as well. The shades included are Molokai (top left), Antananarivo (top right), LHASA (bottom left), and Rangoun (bottom right). While these shadows don't seem to have the "creamy" feel that those from The Balm have, they all seem to be really richly pigmented and are still very easy to blend. The blushes are both a home run as well.
Well, it seems I have a thing for neutral eyeshadows! LOL. I feel like whenever something is new to me or more pricey, I gravitate toward basics that I'll get the most use out of. The MAC and NARS palettes were my favorites, and if I had to choose just one of those, it'd probably by the MAC kit (at least, at this point in time. I haven't been using these for very long!) I really like the MAC shadows, blush, and lipsticks included, and those shades just create a really pretty, fresh look that I think will easily transition from summer to fall. And if you want to see even more new things from Nordstrom, Sephora, and a little gift exchange with Kristin Gehm- check out my Mall of America Haul of America video! :)
- Chance of severe weather today!
- Tomorrow's blog will be on the Ladies' Home Journal Gloss Daily site!
- I have had exceptionally DRY lips lately. What's up with that?
- I did a 30 minute bouncing session on my new mini trampoline yesterday! How fun to be able to bounce AND enjoy the air conditioning! :) I was doing all my cheerleading jumps... that'll get you huffing & puffing! front hurdler anyone?!