By Terry Sun Designer Palette “Light and Tan vibes”

This is a limited edition release for spring/summer, a face palette of “sunkiss powders”, meant to “sculpt contours, brighten features, correct or intensify the complexion, all the while revealing the full splendour of the tan”.

It comes in two colours — Tan & Flash Cruise, which has darker bronzers and more vibrant blush shades, and Light & Tan Vibes, which is the lighter and more tonal palette I picked up. This retails at Space NK for £64, but I got mine for £44 (including the £5 delivery) with the help of some discount codes and accumulated reward points (university students on a budget have to do what they can).IMG_6185The palette is beautiful to look at. It’s elegantly packaged in a sleek art deco inspired plastic casing, which feels sturdy and well-made. The six shades (15g of product in total) are arranged in a zig-zag pattern that mimics the outer shell, allowing for easy mixing of colours.

The powders are very soft and very pigmented, especially the warm pink blush shade and the bronzer — I had to be much more light-handed than I’m used to. However they do blend out really smoothly, so it’s easy to make these look seamless.

IMG_6187Here are swatches:IMG_6312.JPG

The shades in this palette are:

  • a bronze shimmer — this could be used on top of bronzer to create a radiant glow, or mixed in with the pink blush to create a warmer shade.
  • a warm watermelon pink with slight shimmer — I love this shade. It looked a little daunting in the pan, but once blended out gave the most beautiful vibrant flush.
  • a shimmering champagne rose — this is very pigmented and gives an intense highlight.
  • a matte beige — I’m not sure if this is supposed to be used as a highlight, but unfortunately it’s extremely close to my skin colour and doesn’t show up. It could also be mixed with the other bronzer shades.
  •  a matte rosy beige — this is beautiful mixed in with the bronzer, or worn as a neutral blush colour.
  • a warm bronze with slight shimmer — the shimmer doesn’t translate much to the face.

I can definitely see these shades being flattering on a wide range of skin tones, even sun-starved people who don’t have much of a tan to enhance. The shades are all stunning, there’s an excellent mix of mattes and shimmers, and they work together harmoniously to liven up the face. The formulation of these powders is also excellent, they’re a treat to use and last all day without fading.

On the whole, I’m thoroughly impressed with this palette and definitely recommend this to anyone who can get their hands on it. The neutral, tonal range of colour is perfect for creating a soft, diffused and radiant summer look.

Edit: I’ve read on several other reviews that people had problems with kickup. I tested this out by swirling a large Zoeva powder brush in the palette and it did have significant powdery kickup. However I hadn’t actually encountered this problem prior, because these powders are so pigmented and soft that I usually just touch my blush brush to the powder and that would pick up enough product — no kickup at all.

Advertisements

Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge “Powder Pink”

I purchased this (off the Bobbi Brown website, for £19.50) after seeing it on a few people online. It looked like a subtle, natural flush of neutral pink-beige, and it’s a lip and cheek dual product, which is right up my street. (The Becca beach tints are my absolute favourites.)

The actual colour isn’t what I was expecting — it’s considerably darker and more warm-toned. I was quite disappointed because I tend to bring out the orange tones in everything, and this pulled distinctly peach on me. IMG_6147.JPGHere’s the Powder Pink pot rouge worn on cheeks. As you can see it looks peachy rather than pink. It’s got a very dry and solid consistency, and it’s quite pigmented — has to be applied in very small amounts,  and blended out quickly and well. For this reason I feel that this would work best for people with good, unblemished skin — the vigorous blending you’d have to do after applying this would easily mess up any foundation or concealer underneath. IMG_6134.JPGHere’s the Powder Pink pot rouge worn on lips. I much prefer this on the lips, because it’s much easier to apply and leaves a nice emollient finish. I didn’t find it drying.

Overall, I think this is a product best suited to people with clear and unblemished skin, on whom this would look very seamless and natural when worn as a blush. It functions decently as a lip colour but being emollient, doesn’t last very long. I would recommend this to people who like their blush pigmented and long-wearing.

Aesop Camellia Nut Facial Hydrating Cream

Over Christmas break my family and I had a staycation at a resort near the beach — a beautiful colonial hotel with a villa and private lap pool. The toiletries the hotel provided for us were all Aesop — their classic shampoo, geranium leaf body wash, orange rind concentrate balm, etc. The products were beautifully scented and blended in magically with the lush, earthy surroundings. Using each product was a luxurious, sensual experience.

And hence I was motivated to try out more Aesop products. I picked up a 60mL jar of the Camellia Nut Facial Hydrating Cream from the store at Ngee Ann City in Singapore, for S$63 (it retails here in the UK for £33).

The sales associate recommended this to me after I’d explained my skin issues — dryness, sensitivity, occasional breakouts. I have to say the service I received in-store was first-class. The sales associate was extremely polite and helpful, she explained each product patiently and in detail, and tested a few out on my hands to let me decide which one I wanted. My moisturiser was then placed in a linen dustbag and sprayed with perfume before being handed to me. I was given a generous amount of samples despite only purchasing this one item, and even personally escorted out of the store.

IMG_6118

I’m a total sucker for packaging, and this comes in a beautiful minimalistic jar (like all Aesop products).

IMG_6120

It’s a lightweight and gentle moisturiser with a pleasing scent — I’d say the strongest notes are camomile and lavender. Many people are against fragrance in skincare products, but this doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin at all — it gently hydrates, mattifies and softens my skin. (“Parfum” isn’t an ingredient in the list, the scent comes from all the oils, but I’m not sure if that counts as fragrance.) I love using this — it doesn’t feel oily at all, just soft and soothing — and I apply this every morning under my makeup. It’s got lots of beautiful ingredients like aloe leaf, camellia seed oil, macadamia oil, rosewood and cocoa seed butter. However, I need a stronger moisturiser at night for my dry skin and am still on the hunt for one.

Needless to say, I love this product and look forward to trying more from Aesop.

 

MAC “Spirit”

This particular lipstick isn’t talked about much online. It’s a satin formula, and the colour is difficult to describe — it’s too dark to be really considered a part of the nude family, but it’s not a straight-up brown either. It’s definitely a 90s-esque lipstick, and darker in colour compared to many of the trendy “90s” lipsticks that read more like a modernised interpretation.

Colour is very pigmented and opaque — this is a single swipe.

image1

It’s a satin formula, which is supposed to be smoother than the matte formula, but still retain a matte finish. However you do need to make sure that you have hydrated and smooth lips before applying this to prevent it from sinking into lip lines. Some would say you could wear a balm under, but personally I don’t get that — I find it tough to apply lipsticks evenly over balms. Could be just me though.

Left: My bare, pale, chapped lips. Right: Wearing MAC “Spirit” lipstick. As you can see it settled immediately into my lip lines.

Wearing MAC “Spirit” lipstick

The undertones in the lipstick are complex — it changes in different lightings, shifting through terracotta, brown, mauve. I’d say it’s a MLBB colour with an edge — it straddles the line between neutral and bold. I really like the colour, but you’ll need hydrated and unchapped lips to make this work well. The lasting power is pretty good and it doesn’t move for the most part, but it won’t last through a meal. It’s also very slightly drying.