Trying Out A Few New Nudes: MAC, Burberry & Zoya

February 21, 2011

I’m always looking for that perfect shade of nude even though I have quite a few favorites (Chanel Mythic & Luminous, Bobbi Brown Beige Gold, MAC High Tea). Everyone has a different interpretation of what they see as a true nude (see an older post here, What’s Your Definition of Nude?) – for me a true nude is something flesh colored. Light nude beiges don’t always work for me, many require tweaking with layering of extra gloss or liner (what I call my high maintenance nudes). Sometimes there are nude colors that are simply too neutral or beige and end up washing me out, but my curiosity always gets the best of me, I can’t help but check out every variation of beige.

A few new discoveries, thoughts, and swatches: MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick & Lipglass, Zoya Naomi Nail Polish, Burberry Trench Eyeshadow, MAC Gana Blush (from the Mickey Contractor collection).

First up are the newest additions to the MAC Viva Glam series: Gaga 2 Lipstick and Lipglass. Both are creamy neutral grey-beiges in the tubes but go on with a slightly peachy cast on the skin. These are true nudes, both of which I find fall under my “high maintenance” nudes category. The Gaga 2 Lipstick resembles concealer on my lips. It has full coverage (the amplified formula) with rich and creamy texture. Having tried other MAC nudes like Cherish, Creme d’Nude and Peachstock, I know this one will work better once layered over a darker liner (and blended of course) like MAC Stripdown and then topped with clear lipglass. I’ve swatched it alone below. Thumbs down by itself – the color just makes my skin look dirty and I look lifeless. Gaga 2 Lipglass is the exact same shade of nude, it’s not quite as flat and has the tiniest bit of sparkle in the tube. The shimmer doesn’t show up on the lips. For some reason the glossy texture makes it more forgiving on the lips. Thumbs up for this one! It’s a wearable nude, but I think MAC Revealing Lipglass is a more universally flattering beige nude. This one is also featured below alone (no lipstick or liner underneath).

In direct sunlight:

Zoya Naomi is an opalescent beige with a soft silver sheen. I ordered this from Zoya.com sight unseen along with a few of the Zoya Spoons. I haven’t tried too many Zoya Nail Polishes yet, but so far I’ve been extremely pleased with the finish, pigment and wearability of the colors. However, my experience with the Zoya neutrals is similar to my experience with Essie neutrals – what you see in the bottle doesn’t always translate to what you get on the fingers. In this case, I found Zoya Naomi a bit too warm for my beige skintone. I had to tweak it with a layer of a sheer silvery pink to get it to work. (Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post to see what I used.) Lovely color with 2 coats, just needed a slight change for my own liking.

Burberry Trench Eyeshadow is one of the best nudes I have ever tried. It’s deceptively boring and dull looking in the pan and swatched on my fingers, but it has a soft velvety texture that brightens and evens out the eye lids with a subtle luminescence. I love it. This isn’t entirely new (bought it back in late August in San Francisco’s Nordstrom) but I haven’t gotten around to reviewing it. I really love Burberry’s soft eyeshadows. I can’t wait for them to release more colors.

Burberry Trench finger swatched (on the hands it just melts/blends):

MAC Gana Frost Blush from the Mickey Contractor Collection was exclusive to select MAC Pro Stores and online. It’s a soft champagne grey pink shimmer powder that looks pretty on the eyes and as a highlighter on the temples. I don’t know if it’s still available or easy to find. It’s the closest thing I’ve found to Estee Lauder’s Tom Pecheux Highlighter (reviewed here) but with a pinkish/grey sheen. Those who can’t find it and want something similar that you can still find, MAC’s Beauty Powder in Play it Proper similar in effect.

Gana Swatched on bare skin:

All the new nudes swatched on arm, two views:

Have you tried any of these nudes I just reviewed? What are your thoughts if you have tried them? I’m especially interested to hear your thoughts on the Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick and Lipglass – how are you making these work for you?

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  • I haven't purchased the new gaga products yet but I really want to. I've read people comparing the colour to concealer, which seems very far from the truth,maybe if you are really really dark. I love how they look on you!

  • i'm sorry, i don't really like them… the don't look very flattering…
    but i like the other things

  • Hi,
    How does the Burberry Trench compare to Edward Bess' nude shadow?

  • Hi Sabrina! I think I have the perfect nude for you! Don't know if you have tried it, but it's the Chanel Rouge Allure in Mythic .. It's a stunning greyish beige with subtle shimmer and goes on glossy and sheerly. Definitely check it out! Also, I just bought Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua and I'm in love! Thanks to your recommendation πŸ™‚

  • Justine – thanks for your input! they definitely don't look like concealer when swatched on the arms/hands, but how they apply on the lips is totally different! I've seen some lighter blondes with this on and it looks gorgeous on them.

    Lizzy – The Burberry Trench and EB Nude are very similar, the EB is softer and not quite as matte giving an even more luminous finish, but still very close.

    Haley – Thank you for the reminder!!!! I updated the post with a link to my Chanel Mythic comparisons. You're so right, Chanel Mythic is one of the most perfect nudes, it's just very sheer on me and doesn't last very long. Glad you like the Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua!!

  • I've been wanting to try the new Gaga Lipstick and lipglass. Her first one is somewhat wearable so I am looking forward to this nude looking one.

  • Have not tried any of the products mentioned above. But the colors sure look pretty! The Gaga V2 is still not launched here in Malaysia and I hope they will soon.


  • Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick arrived on Saturday and I did not even put it on my pigmented lips. My reaction was the same as one gal on Spektra: "Eeek!" It was not worth my ruining a new tube for a return. Some gal will enjoy it more than I ever could.

    I also got BB Rich Lip Color in Bikini Pink which was, literally, a washout on my lips. My face looked dreadfully ill.

    My most successful "nudes" are MAC Patisserie, BB Beige Gold (metallic lip color), BB Pale Mauve Lip Color, and BB Beige Lip Color (see how successful BB shades are on my pigmented lips!); and NARS Little Darling. These shades are not truly nude, but they are as close as I'll ever come to one. I used to put the Balm concealer on beneath Rouge Allure Darling, but now I just go with the lipstick by itself. I think I'm accepting that my lips are berry-pigmented. When I was younger, Vaseline worked just fine for me. I was even asked what shade I was wearing!

    The Burberry Trench is a nice staple but it does not work for me on my NW20-25 skin. I use Dior and BB shadows for neutrals. On my nails, Chanel Antilope is a favorite.

  • Great job on the swatches. I almost bought the Lady gaga lipstick, but nudes dont look too good on my fair skin, they make me look really dead. But it looks great on you!

  • I was scared by the brown tube color of gaga 2—- however, the lip gloss looks really nice on you! To second Haley's comment, I just got Chanel's Vitalumiere Aqua yesterday, thanks to your glowing recommendation. I'm really excited to try it out (and am hoping I don't have any sort of reaction to it!)

  • The Gaga 2 lipstick looks like concealer, but for some reason it truly looks lovely on you (in photographs.)
    I imagine on me it would look hideous! I have yellow undertones in my medium skin and pigmented lips too. Myth looks bad enough on me, but I'm always curious about the hype.

    I want to try the lipglass though to tone down the pigmentation in my lips..

  • I'm always looking for the perfect nude too. I love the Lady Gaga 2 lipglass.

  • Nude lippies, Bubble Gum Pink (Ncky Minaj, Saint Germain) and colors like Ravsihing n Peach stock look painfully Horrible on me.
    I end up using them in layers with just some other colors, just to use it up.

  • mkdallas

    I ordered the Gaga 2 Lipglass but haven't recieved it yet; the lippie just looked too opaque beige to work for me. I actually think you found the perfect nude lip with your post on Edward Bess "Pure Impulse". I ended up buying 3 tubes of it because it's such a wearable, beautiful color. I need to have a teensy bit of peach or pink in a nude lipstick for it to look flattering. Regarding nail polish, you may wish to try the new OPI for Sephora shade called "Let's Plie" and Creative Nail Design's "Putty". Both are creams (no shimmer). Love your blog and read it daily!

  • Love how the Burberry Eyeshadow looks! So pretty!
    xx Olga

  • Sparklehead

    Hi, thanks for the swatches! How do you think gaga II compares to Edward Bess nude lotus? I'm trying to figure out if it's worth having both! I don't have Edward Bess Sundown, but Im guessing it might be closer to gaga than Nude Lotus?