Chanel Notorious Ombre Contraste – Sculpting Veil for Eyes and Cheeks ($43 for 4g/0.14 oz) is a new limited-edition release from the Contrastes Essentielles Collection. We first saw a glimpse of this back in March as seen on Café Makeup’s Chanel Runway Report. It finally arrived on counter just a few weeks ago. I purchased mine from Saks NY, it is available at select Chanel counters and right now on Chanel.com.
Chanel Notorious is a multi-purpose contouring product for both eyes and cheeks. The description “mauve-taupe” suits the product perfectly. On me it’s more taupe with a hint of mauve-grey. It has a satiny finish – glowy but very subtle on the shimmer factor. The texture is soft and blendable – based on the pan, it doesn’t resemble the European/Asian baked formula, but it doesn’t quite resemble the US formula either. I suspect since this is more for eyes and cheeks it has a completely different consistency than the Joues Contraste blushes.
Based on the runway previews I expected a pigmented grey that was layerable for a strong contoured effect. It does layer well for a more intense effect, but I found the formula rather sheer. For me, the color didn’t show up well on the face – I suspect it’s my medium-tan skintone that prevents it from showing up well. I tried a number of techniques with different brushes, no luck. A number of others have shown this to be a success on the face – I suspect they are lighter in skintone than I am.
On the eyes however, I absolutely loved it. Notorious provides a wonderful contour. It’s one of those magical shades that is so versatile. It layers well over metallic creams or sheer shimmers, it looks amazing layered with other colors, it’s a wonder-product to help blend out harsh edges for a smokey eye. The sheerness and layer-ability helps contour the eye to create a soft gradient. It’s a much-needed shade in my collection. In the compact it’s the same color as what I envision a space-rock to look like.
I pulled a few other greys and contouring shades to compare: Chanel Furtif, Gris Exquis, Burberry Pearl Grey, Burberry Earthy, MAC Emote and NARS Notorious (discontinued). I found Chanel Notorious to have enough warmth to suit my olive skintone as the perfect contour – other greys tend to be quite a bit more silver/blue-based (which is nice, but more sharply contrasted with my skintone).
Update: I’ve added one more comparison photo below. Some have commented it resembles Burberry Rosewood. It’s in the same family, but I feel quite different. I apologize I don’t have time to swatch these but I hope this helps as a reference guide. It’s definitely likely there are dupes – in doing a quick search I couldn’t find any, but I didn’t search for all the possibilities. Below: Burberry Rosewood, Le Metier Corinthian, NARS 413 BLKR, MAC Satin Taupe, MAC Smoke & Diamonds, NARS Ashes to Ashes.
I really like Chanel Notorious. I didn’t like it as a blush/contour, but I love it on the eyes. Perhaps it will take more experimenting for it to show up on my face. For reference on other skins, see it swatched on Blondy Candy
, Messy Wands
, Best Things in Beauty
. As an update, a darker-skinned follower tweeted me an additional look at Notorious on darker skin at Adventures In Makeup
If you’re considering this, I recommend you order soon. It’s limited-edition. Did you try or buy Chanel Notorious? What were your thoughts? If you tried it – can you share your skintone too for my other readers below?