Archive for the 'loose powder' Category

TEMPTU RETOUCH Powder Review & Photos

August 31, 2009
TEMPTU RETOUCH Powder Soft Focus Finish ($43)
TEMPTU RETOUCH Powder is a lightweight, mineral-based formula that banishes shine and provides natural-looking, satin-soft skin. This powder’s silky texture blends easily onto the skin and is ideal for finishing any makeup application. The built-in brush applicator holds just enough loose powder in its handle for perfect touch-up application.

I’m pretty fickle when it comes to my beauty products, and things are constantly moving in and out of my makeup rotation, but one constant for the past few weeks has been TEMPTU’s RETOUCH powder. It’s ideal for on-the-go touch ups thanks to its handy dandy brush form and I love the mattified, satiny soft-focus finish the RETOUCH powder gives my complexion.

TEMPTU RETOUCH Powder wasn’t actually love at first use for me, mainly because the applicator brush itself, while mighty convenient, is definitely not the softest and tends to feel a little rough and scratchy. Luckily, the powder has so many other redeeming qualities that I can overlook this one flaw.

First of all the RETOUCH Powder and the TEMPTU foundation are a match made in heaven. The Translucent shade coordinates beautifully with my foundation and I love that after retouching with the powder, I don’t look like I’m wearing any powder at all, but rather I just seem to have beautifully matte, even skin with a soft focus glow that seems to de-emphasize my pores.

Of course another thing that the RETOUCH powder has going for it is the portability factor. The fact that this is a powder and brush in one makes this very very easy to just pop in your purse, and I literally haven’t gone a day without mine since opening it. I’ve tried other powders built into brushes in the past, and I’ve always been dissatisfied with the dispensing mechanism as they always seemed to release these messy clouds of product. One click of the TEMPTU releases the perfect amount of powder to touch up your entire face. I didn’t believe this at first as I could never see the powder coming out of the brush, but the results more than spoke for themselves.

All in all I love my RETOUCH powder and plan to repurchase when I run out, although the price is a little steep!

What New Products Are You Experimenting With?

June 4, 2009

One of the main reasons that I blog, other than the fact that it allows me to interact with some amazing individuals like you my readers, is that it gives me an excuse to play with new products all the time. Thanks to all the Armani samples Nicole sent me, I was like a kid in a candystore this morning!

So I started off with Armani’s Light master Primer ($55), which was nothing like what I was expecting. It has the consistency of a light liquid luminizer, and is supposed to create a mirror-like veil for the skin by reflecting light just so.

Next came Armani’s new Lasting Silk UV Foundation SPF 20 in Shade 2 ($58) which I’ve seriously been dying to get my hands on. The SPF in this has been micronised in such a way that it won’t reflect back during flash photography (meaning no Edward Cullen-esque white face), and it touts a revolutionary new water-based foundation provides 14-hour luminous matte coverage without the coverage feel.

This is my first day using this so I can’t say much about it, but I am loving the way my skin looks today. I was able to achieve a flawless complexion with minimal foundation and my pores aren’t as prominent as they have been as of late. And best of all, I feel like I’m not wearing any makeup.

I topped the foundation off with Armani’s Micro-Fil Loose Powder in Shade 0 ($48) to matify everything and keep the oilies at bay. I didn’t have adequate time to really feel this out, but the powder seems to have a gorgeous, super-finely milled feel to it and looks great on.

And of course I had to wear my new La Mer The Lip Balm ($45)! Anybody who knows me knows that I can’t resist La Mer. I’m loving the minty taste and how soft, supple and plump my lips are looking.

So what new products have been been testing out lately?

Etude House Peach Skin Pact Review & Swatches

June 2, 2009
Etude House Peach Skin Pact in #1 Peach Bloom

Baked compact supplies light skin coverage with minute, pearl powder particles for long lasting complexion flawlessness.

Etude House’s Peach Skin Pact was released a few seasons back along with the Pore Erasing Peach Base (review HERE), and like the Peach Base, has that same heavenly peach scent that I utterly adore. Come to think of it, most of the Asian products that I own smell pretty amazing–case in point, Jill Stuart’s products. Yumminess in gorgeous packaging!

The powder itself applies like rather nicely–it’s smooth and silky and contains brightening pearl powders to give your complexion a nice brightened look. The trouble for me comes a few hours later. My oily complexion doesn’t take too well to this powder, and while I’m oily around mid-day like I usually am, the real issue is that it just doesn’t look so good once the oilies set in. My face ends up looking a little splotchy as this wears down unevenly and people ask me if I’ve been crying.

I know there are a lot of people who simply adore this powder, and if your skin tends to be on the less oily/dryer side, I can definitely see how it might be pretty amazing, but for me it’s just average.

Still it’s a really nice powder for a really low price. This was actually a gift from my cousin so I can’t remember the exact price, but I believe that it was around $15 or so, and while I’m not in love with it, I do quite enjoy owning it.

Photo of bare skin.

Photo of skin with Peach Pact.


Jill Stuart Loose Powder in 03 Sparkle Review & Swatches

May 13, 2009
Jill Stuart Loose Powder
($53.03 from Bobodave–which in case you’re wondering is only a few dollars more than I paid for this from Japan)

While I love all the products my friend Cathy hauled for me in Japan (check them all out HERE), I’d have to say that Jill Stuart’s Loose Powder in shade 03 Sparkle is amongst of my favorites. Although I’m still obsessed with my Fairy Drop Mascara (review HERE) so this powder definitely has some competition.

I’ll be the first to admit that I would’ve have given Jill Stuart cosmetics a second glance were it not for the packaging–the feminine, princessy packaging that just screams “BUY ME!!!” I honestly wasn’t expecting too much from the actual powder itself, but surprisingly it’s rather great and completely gorgeous.

All Jill Stuart products have this deliciously subtle fruity scent (including her Jelly Eye Color that I reviewed HERE), and the loose powder is no exception.

The powder itself is super finely milled, enough so that the texture reminds me of my much loved La Mer Loose Powder (review HERE), which is saying a lot. Since the shade I have is called Sparkle, it does contain a high dose of shimmer, but I can’t speak for the other three shades that this is available in. Sparkle is a soft pink shade with light shimmer interspersed throughout and with a few larger chunks of glitter here and there. The shade itself reminds me a bit of Caron’s Venitienne powder (review HERE), which I also love.

Swatch of Sparkle

What I absolutely love about the Jill Stuart Loose Powder in Sparkle is that it lightens and brightens my whole complexion, giving it the flawless, luminous, finished look that I’m always trying to achieve. I’d always heard that soft pink powders really help to brighten your complexion, but while I’ve tried many of them, none have ever been this successful. Truly a gorgeous powder! As for mattifying properties, this actually keeps me matter than many other powders I’ve tried, giving me a good four hours or so of matteness before the oilies start to appear (and this is saying a lot since my skin is super super oily).

All blended in!

Applied with a light hand this powder is gorgeous, giving your skin a luminosity without too much shimmer, but it’s definitel not for the shimmer haters out there as Sparkle, as its name indicates, does contain a healthy does of sparkle. And for those of you hesitating on the price, think of how pretty this powder will look sitting on your vanity. I definitely plan to refill mine with another powder once it’s empty!

RATING: 4.5/5

J. Lynne Mineral Cosmetics Review, Swatches, and a FOTD

January 9, 2009

J. Lynne Cosmetics is an indie beauty and mineral makeup company specializing in natural cosmetics that launched in January of 2005. Having recently been introduced to their mineral makeup line I decided I’d give a few of their products a spin, and color me impressed!

While all of the products were great, I’d have to say that what I absolutely LOVED was the eyeshadows from their Japanese Garden Collection. With names like Mimoza, Sakura, and Fuji I couldn’t resist trying a few samples, and here are the shades that I ended up with:

J. Lynne Cosmetics Japanese Garden Collection
Top Row:
Middle Row: Kuzu, Mimoza
Bottom Row: Nashi, Sakura, Tachibana

Swatches (dry)
Top Row: Fuji (icy silver-violet and my favorite!), Kuzu (a pinky plum), Mimoza (creamy pale golden yellow)
Bottom Row: Nashi (golden wheat), Sakura (pinky salmon), Tachibana (golden peach)

Pigmentation: There honestly wasn’t a shade that I didn’t love and I’ve been wearing these J. Lynne shadows nearly daily since receiving them! They’re probably agmonst the most pigmented mineral eyeshadows that I’ve ever used and give great color pay-off applied either wet or dry. Plus the shades in the Japanese Garden Collection are seriously stunning–I can’t wait to try the rest!

FOTD’s Using J. Lynne Eyeshadows:

Unfortunately being the clumsy oaf that I am, I managed to knock the entire sample jar of my favorite shade, Fuji, all over the sweatpants I was wearing while doing my makeup the other day. A tragedy I know!

Fountain of Youth Blush Collection
Top Row: Innocence, Poise
Bottom Row: Serenity, Sweetness, Virtue

Swatches: Innocence, Poise, Serenity, Sweetness, Virtue

I think everybody knows by now that I’m a shimmer kinda girl but I thought it’d be interesting to try out a few matte blushes just for the heck of it, and so these were my picks! Innocence is a nude peachy shade, Poise is a neutral soft pink, Serenity is a cool pinky lilac shade, Sweetness is a dusty cherry pink, and virtue is a neutral peach shade.

I’d have to say Serenity and Sweetness are my favorites of the bunch. Serenity just gives me this otherwordly glow that looks amazing when my skin is cooperating and decides to give me the china-doll look I’m always trying to achieve. And while Sweetness looks rather pinky in the jar, once on it gives me the best “just came in from playing in the cold” flush I could ask for. See a photo of J. Lynne herself wearing it here!

Check out reviews and swatches of more J. Lynne products after the jump!


J. Lynne Cosmetics Goddess Collection Mineral Glow Powders
Clockwise from top left: Aurora (sheer yellow), Fauna (sheer beige), Luna (ivory pink), and Flora (sheer peach)

I’ll admit that I felt compelled to try out the Goddess collection solely for its name–what woman doesn’t want to fee like a goddess? The Goddess mineral Glow Powders are available in a range of four sheer, luminous shades that really give your complexion a soft glow.

Swatches (L to R): Aurora, Fauna, Flora, Luna

Of the four shades Aurora and Flora are probably my favorites. While Aurora is definitely a bit on the yellow side, I love to use it on my cheeks to golden sun-kissed glow and I love how multi-functional it is–lately I’ve been using it dr to highlight my brow bone, or wet as a gorgeous yellowy gold eyeshadow. As for Flora–well who doesn’t love a touch of peach shimmer on their cheeks?

And last but not least the lip creams! I own these in Greta and Ingrid, and Ingrid is definitely my Benetint’s soulmate! While I wouldn’t really call these creamy, I absolutely love the berry-stained look that Ingrid gives me–once on you really can’t feel these at all on your lips and it’s just like wearing a stain. They’re sheer but the color is definitely buildable and rather than attempting (and failing) to stain my lips with Benetint I’ll be reaching for Ingrid from now on!

Swatches: Greta, Ingrid

A Much Delayed and Very Brief Palgantong Morning Set Review

December 2, 2008
Palgantong Morning After Set ($15 or so)

A (not so great) Pink Puff

Theatrical Powder in Pearl Beige

One Touch BB Cream

I purchased this months and months ago from Sasa and I’ve had the photos on my desktop forever but for some reason I’ve just never gotten around to reviewing this set. The fact that I hardly ever use it could have something to do with it–it’s not that it’s not a great set, it’s just that I have so many other products that are that much better.

The Palgantong Theatrical Powder in Pearl Beige is a shimmery pearlescent light beige shade that actually quite reminds me of my favorite La Mer powder in Tranluscent, but it just doesn’t look near as good on me as the La Mer does, so I find myself neglecting it. It is a gorgeous powder though and a really great value: it’s super finely milled, light as air, and has a beautiful shimmer to it.

The One Touch BB Cream, while decent, is definitely not one of my favorites. It’s rather thick (as are most BB creams), but my problem is that once it the thick feeling remains and my face feels sticky/uncomfortable and rather greasy. Setting it with powder helps momentarily, but after an hour or two my face looks oilier than I’d like.

I do like to carry this set with me when I travel since I then have a face color and powder conveniently packaged together in a little zip bag, but in general this doesn’t get much love in the ABS household.

Caron Poudre Libre Classique Review and a Video!

October 23, 2008
Caron La Poudre Libre Classique in Gitane ($45)

Everything that comes in that magical little box.

Years ago, Caron invented a unique world-class manufacturing process for its powders. Natural ingredients are ground, blended and sifted several times to achieve an outstandingly fine, lightweight texture. Developed in a state-of-the-art workshop, Caron face powder is recommended by dermatologists, chosen by the most discerning women and used by professional make-up artists for its long-lasting effects. It is sweetly scented with the fragrance of natural Bulgarian Rose, distilled by the in-house perfumer.

“Classic,” the formula that gave Caron face powder its legendary reputation, provides excellent coverage and a unifying, mattifying finish for normal or combination skin. It is ideal fora sophisticated, natural “powdered” look.

Such a lovely sifter…clumps begone!

For reference I’m MAC NW 15-20ish, and Gitane works rather perfectly for my skintone. After typing up that little blurb above for you guys I feel like there’s nothing really left for me to say about this powder! It’s beautifully finely milled and oh so light, and no matter how much of this stuff I apply to my face I can hardly tell that it’s there.

While this powder can be used similarly to a mineral foundation since it can provide anywhere from light to medium coverage, I still prefer to use Gitane as a finishing powder simply because I love the look of a flawless complexion and I have stubborn redness in my cheeks. And Gitane really does work wonders for making my skin look absolutely perfect-even, smooth, and soft. Plus after powdering up with my Caron products, I smell great to boot!

I will say that for those of you with very very dry complexions, Caron’s classic formulations may dry your skin out a tad as they are “powdery,” but their Translucent formulas would probably be perfect for you!

So rather than go into a long spiel about how this stuff is meant to be applied using Caron’s swansdown puff (Diane kindly explained the whole process to me multiple times), I’ve made a (not so great) video showing the whole process. Please don’t laugh this is the first time I’ve attempted to edit a video, and I did the best that I could!

Related Posts:
See my review of Caron’s Powder Base, Foundation, and Venitienne Powder here.
Check out the heavenly photos from my Caron boutique visit here.
Read my review of the wonderful fluffy downiness that is Caron’s swansdown puffs here.

Caron Paris Swansdown Powder Puff Review

October 9, 2008
Caron Genuine Swansdown Powder Puff ($45)

I’m one of those annoying shoppers that has perpetual buyer’s remorse. You know the one: that friend you have who’s always saying, “Maybe I shouldn’t have bought this,” or “Do you really like it or just like it like it?” But for the first time I’ve splurged on something that I don’t feel the slightest bit guilty about–my very own magenta swan’s down puff!

At $45 a puff I’ll admit that these are rather pricey, but can you really put a price on pure luxury? Caron’s swan/goose down puffs are simply divine: featherlight, soft and fluffy as a cloud and absolutely perfect for loose powder application. I admit it–I’m deep in puff love!

The fluffy down fibers pick up and deposit the optimal amount of powder, making for no-mess powder application. Unlike a traditional powder puff which can drop your powder or create messy and wasteful powder clouds, the swandsdown puff grabs onto the powder and holds it until you’re ready to pat the powder onto your skin.

I was pretty amazed to see that after patting at my skin with the swansdown puff it came away clean with no residual powder remaining on it. I literally felt like I was patting at my face with a cloud, and my only regret was that I hadn’t purchased one of these sooner!

Caron’s swansdown powder puffs are available in a wide array of shades (ranging from peach to magenta to yellow and green) and various sizes.

If this fluffy little temptress has captured your heart, call the Caron boutique at 212-308-0270 and ask for Diane (tell her Jen sent you) to get one of your very own! You won’t be sorry! I plan on getting a few more in various colors when my wallet can handle it.

Rating: 5/5

Caron Paris: So This is Heaven

October 8, 2008

Nestled in a cozy corner within Phyto Universe (715 Lexington Avenue), the Caron Paris boutique really is heaven on earth. Adorned with elegant Baccarat crystal perfume fountains, goblets of powder, and fluffy swan down powder puffs, the boutique is just impossibly elegant and beautiful. Everything from the decor to the service was sheer perfection–I couldn’t have asked for a more wonderful experience!

Since 1903 Caron’s fragrances and powders have entranced women with their eye for luxury and their attention to detail. These Baccarat crystal perfume fountains (approximately $25,000 each I believe) contain the most precious of Caron extracts, based on their original formula.

Caron powders are purported to be the finest in the world, having been perfected over nearly a century of production. They are composed of of pure minerals (the raw materials for the powders come from Italy) and delicately scented with Bulgarian rose distilled by Caron, meeting the same rigorous standards as the perfumes.

Caron’s powders (which come in 19 shades that range from matte and full coverage to sheer and shimmery) are recommended in France by dermatologists and enriched with vitamins A and E, camellia oil and powdered silk, in addition to natural IR and UV filters. The powder is meant to be pressed firmly into the skin using one of Caron’s heavenly down puffs,and then a dense brush is to be used to dust off any excess.

The light-as-air puffs come in a variety of sizes (large which is shown on top of the powder goblets, medium, and mini shown below) and colors (magenta, peachy pink, green, etc.) and are absolutely divine–but more on these in a future post!

A beautiful Caron loose powder compact which comes with a mini down puff ($45).
When closed it looks like the compact on the far right with the raised dots.

A luxurious variation on the loose powder compact, this time with an exotic covering ($220).

Call the Caron boutique at 212-308-0270 and ask for Diane for all your Caron needs. She is beyond sweet and helpful!

And of course I couldn’t leave the boutique without purchasing a little something (or somethings) for myself, but I’ll leave you to wonder what’s in the bag for now. Expect reviews sometime this week though!

Skincolor de La Mer The Powder in Translucent Review and Swatches

October 6, 2008
Skincolor de La Mer’s The Powder ($65)
This luxurious finishing powder is so incredibly light it appears to float. Developed with symmetrically shaped, uniquely coated particles, it magnetically attracts to the skin for a perfect fit. Airspun seaborne particles – some of the lightest materials on earth – create an imperceptible finish that leaves skin looking flawless. Translucent coverage.

I get quite a few reader e-mails asking me what my one must-have beauty item is, and whereas a year or so ago that would have been a difficult question for me to answer, my current answer is hands down La Mer’s loose powder in Translucent.

Now before you go rolling your eyes and telling me that I’m crazy for spending $65 on a powder, just hear me out!

La Mer’s The Powder comes in a range of 6 shades, but my color of choice is Translucent, which is nearly colorless and has a slight shimmer to it (this is the only shimmer shade, the rest are all matte). Not glittery chunks of shimmer–just enough of an ultra fine shimmer to give your face a lit from within, “I have the most beautiful skin the world” glow.

The powder is seriously light as air and the most finely milled product I have ever seen or felt. If you were to pop the top off this and stick your finger inside, you would feel nothing and encounter zero resistance, this stuff is so light. In addition, it offers a small amount of coverage and glides over pores, lines, and any other imperfections you may have, creating a gorgeous veil of flawlessness.

I poured some in the lid to photograph for you, although it pained me a little to do so!

And for those of you who’re thinking, “I can’t wear powder it makes my face feel dry”–you just haven’t found the right one yet! La Mer’s loose powder does an AMAZING job of keeping me matte (better than any other product I’ve used) but never looks cakey or dry and is completely weightless. You can apply a ton of this stuff (although you don’t need to since a little goes a long way) and it won’t settle into your lines or pores like other products, nor will you feel it just sitting there on your face.

Yes $65 for a powder is crazy expensive but I’ve been using mine on a daily basis for almost a year (and I’ve given away a few small samples of it) and I’ve barely made a dent in it. So while I wouldn’t say it’s a bargain, it’s definitely worth it in my book!

So I piled a good amount of the powder onto my hand here (although it doesn’t look like much). See the subtle shimmer?

Spread out a little.

And all spread out. It literally disappears and you don’t feel a thing!

The only negatives that I can think of are that the powder comes in a giant glass tub which while attractive is rather heavy and cumbersome, and that it comes with a puff which is unsanitary. But just use a brush and you’ll have no problems!
Rating: 5/5

Related Posts:
Read my review of La Mer’s new ‘The Hydrating Infusion’ here.