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Beauty Tools Chanel

Chanel Makeup Brushes – New Design

August 9, 2017

Chanel Makeup Brushes New Design 2017 | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel recently revamped their makeup brushes with a new sleek look and the ones I’ve tested are extremely well made. I had quite a few from the previous design and they’ve lasted for years. The new ones have definitely improved with a softer feel and more luxurious application. These are currently exclusive to Chanel.com and they’ve pulled all the older styles from their site. You can still find some of the original silver handled versions at Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus but I don’t know how long they’ll be there.

There are four face and cheek brushes I tested. All exceeded my expectations in terms of performance and application of powders and creams.

Chanel Makeup Brushes | The Beauty Look Book Shown above from left to right:

  • 2-in-1 Liquid and Powder Brush ($50) is essentially the same as the original design in shape and size. This works extremely well for streak-free foundation coverage. I tested this on the Chanel Sublimage Le Teint (love this, review soon) and Tom Ford Waterproof and it gave both a flawless application. It’s very soft and makes it easy to layer and blend liquids.
  • Blush Brush ($50, made in Japan) is one of the most dense fluffy blush brushes I’ve tried. I feel like I can almost use it for powder. For blush it picks up the perfect amount of product for a single sweep on the cheeks. It’s dense but still extremely soft and isn’t too dense.
  • Foundation-Blending Brush ($50, made in France) is essentially like the previous version and also similar to MAC’s 187 Duo Fibre Brush but with all black hairs. It’s not quite as dense as the previous version or MAC’s but large and fluffy and extremely soft.ย  It is softer than both previous versions. I’ve had this used on me for liquid foundation blending and buffing which works extremely well. I tend to use this for powders or highlighters. It’s a versatile brush though so you can really use it any way you want.
  • Precision Powder Brush ($60, made in Japan) is an extremely soft tapered face brush perfect for contours or detail powder application. I tried it as an all over face powder brush and it’s a bit small for big sweeping strokes. It is however great for detail application like on the nose or cheekbone area. It’s so soft and plush and picks up product beautifully. I’ve used this for bronzer and soft contouring.

 

Chanel Makeup Brushes Face and Cheek | The Beauty Look BookFor the eyes the brush options have improved significantly. Unfortunately I didn’t keep the boxes of all the brushes but for the ones I have I’ll list where they were made.

Chanel Eye Brushes New Design | The Beauty Look Book

Shown above from left to right. Quick note at the moment on the Chanel.com website a couple of these are switched in the image: the Eyeshadow-Blending Brush and Rounded Eyeshadow Brush images are switched for the names. I emailed them and they said they fixed it but based on the product names they have not. I would go by the brush name which I confirmed by checking the box they came in.

  • Eye Contouring Brush ($32, made in France) is a detail brush perfect for a precise line with powder shadows. It’s described as one you can use to apply eyeshadow to the eye contour but to me it seems too small and tiny for that purpose. As a small liner brush it’s excellent and there’s no poking.
  • Rounded Eyeshadow Brush ($28, made in Japan) is the new version of Chanel’s previous #19 brush. Thew new design is significantly softer in material but just as dense. It’s perfect for smudging the eyeshadow.
  • Flat Eyeshadow Brush ($38, made in France) in the new version is much better than the previous one. In the older format this brush had more coarse bristles while the new one has the same shape/size but it’s more dense and a lot softer in finish. For me it’s the perfect size for lid application. I’m going to order a few more.
  • Eyeshadow Blending Brush ($38, made in Japan) is a soft fluffy brush you can use on the lids or crease. It’s pretty standard but well made along the lines and quality of the ones from Wayne Goss Eye Set.
  • Retractable Dual Tip Eye-Contouring Brush ($42) is a double ended brush for smudging shadows or defining them. I’ve used this on both powders and creams and it works really well. I love that it comes with retractable portions and caps to keep the bristles pristine if you store them in a jar or travel.
  • Retractable Dual Tip Eyeshadow Brush ($42) is a double ended brush with a fluffy shadow brush and more precise shadow brush on the other end. This is the perfect duo for me. It has my two favorite shapes in one brush. It’s extremely soft without any poking.

A quick look at the original vs new for the ones I own, original ones have the silver handles:

Chanel Makeup Brushes Old vs New Version | The Beauty Look Book

A quick look at the brushes next to product for size reference:

Chanel New Brushes Sizing | The Beauty Look Book

For the face and cheek brushes, items shown are the Hourglass Ambient Diffused Palette (review here), Hourglass Ambient Lighting Diffused Bronzer (review here), Chanel Joues Contraste Blush, Armani Luminous Silk Compact #4, Chanel Les 4 Ombres Jardins Eclat (swatched here), Ombre Premiere in Talpa (swatched here), Marc Jacobs Eye-Conic Multi-Finish Palette in Glambition (review soon).

Chanel Makeup Brushes New Design | The Beauty Look Book

Overall the brushes are excellent. They have a more modern updated look and quality/performance wise it’s definitely an improvement or upgrade from the previous ones. Most of these are listed as Chanel.com exclusives. At this time I’m not sure if they simply have an early exclusive for the launch or if they will only be available on their site permanently. The face brushes seem to be a bit on the pricey side but they are well made and perform well. Based on how long mine have lasted from the previous launch I do think they are a good investment as the ones I bought have lasted for years (I’m guessing at least 5 years).

Bottom line definitely worth looking into.

You can find the newly revamped makeup brushes online at Chanel.com.

Most brushes featured in this post were provided for review consideration. Ones purchased by me include the Rounded Eye Shadow Brush, Flat Eye Shadow Brush and both dual-ended brushes.

Chanel Eye Makeup

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Eyeshadows

August 7, 2017

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Eyeshadows | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel launched new eyeshadow formulas earlier this year in the Ombre Premiere Collection. There are two formulas called the Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Shadow ($36 each) and Longwear Powder Eyeshadow ($30 each). I bought a few colors several months ago to try and fell in love with the texture of both formulas. Since then I’ve acquired more shades in the neutral category as press samples and find the formulas quite good. Chanel also launched two double-ended brushes with this launch that come with caps making them really nice for travel or to carry in your makeup bag. There is a Retractable Dual Tip Eye-Contouring Brush ($42) and a Retractable Dual-Tip Eyeshadow Brush ($42). They are a bit on the expensive side but are super soft and perform extremely well and for me they were worth the splurge.

The new Ombre Premiere Longwear Powder Eyeshadows are the among the best ones I’ve tried from Chanel in powder form. They are extremely soft but velvety in texture with beautiful pigment. The colors I tried are neutral shimmers. I’ve had Flesh for a few months and find it to be the perfect neutral champagne pinky peach for an all over lid or wash color. Sable is a lighter champagne color. Talpa is a really pretty cool-toned brown shimmer. I feel like this makeup age is the age of palettes and find it rare that single eyeshadows are released. Palettes definitely have the convenience factor but these are really good even if the price tag is pretty high. They glide on the lids beautifully and smoothly with very little fallout. Lasting power is quite impressive alone. If you layer them over the Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Shadows you get a more intense shimmer. These come with applicators but for these shadows I find it better to apply with a regualar full size eyeshadow brush.

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Powder Eyeshadow Sable, Flesh, Talpa | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Powder Eyeshadow Sable, Flesh, Talpa swatches | The Beauty Look Book

The Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Eyeshadows are pigmented cream shadows that have a softer texture and more pigmented texture compared to the Illusion D’Ombres. The Ombre Premiere formula by comparison to most traditional creams has a dry finish versus a super emollient one. This makes it one of the longest-lasting cream shadows I’ve ever tested. My lids aren’t like most others in the sense that they aren’t oily and do not tend to get oily. I find my eyes to be more on the normal/dry side if anything. Most of my readers have asked for shadow primers that work for oily lids – ones that are super popular and highly rated with customer reviews all tend to dry out my skin making it look wrinkly. Because of this – I find that the creams work best when I use a single color as a base or lid color either alone or with a powder on top. Layering cream on top of cream with this formula didn’t work so well on some occasions because they dry and set fast. These last an impressive amount of time even in hot humid weather.

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Eyeshadow | The Beauty Look Book

Shadow labels on the bottom:

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Eyeshadow | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel Ombre Premiere Longwear Cream Eyeshadow swatches | The Beauty Look Book

These come with a small white-hair applicator which I didn’t think would be useful. It actually performed the best in picking up pigment and applying them to the lids. I wish that Chanel made another one like it with a larger handle for easier use. Otherwise fingers work for application too. I’ve experimented with a number of shadow brushes and like the double-ended contour brush the best for a full-size option. I do think the applicator these come with is the best way to pick up the most color.

Chanel Dual Tip Eyeshadow Brushes | The Beauty Look Book

Last but not least are the two dual ended brushes, Retractable Dual Tip Eye-Contouring Brush on the bottom and a Retractable Dual-Tip Eyeshadow Brush on the top. These are some of the softest eyeshadow brushes I’ve tried from Chanel. I really love the larger option as it has the perfect size/density for a brush. The smaller one works really well too but I already have my favorites for detail brushes. There is a moveable portion on each end that you push up to cover the brush tip and then place the cap on top – that way you don’t have to worry about messing up the brush if it gets fluffy from use and recapping. In the past few weeks Chanel has launched an entire line of new brushes – I’m still testing them but hope to have the review up soon.

Overall thoughts are that the formulas of the shadows are really good. I prefer the texture of the powders for that beautiful shimmer but like the colors of the creams better. For summer or hot humid weather these are very good for lasting power when it feels like almost everything is prone to melting off my face. I’m all about neutrals but there are quite a few other colors that are more edgy or bold. For me the neutrals seem most on-brand for Chanel. Some of the others (like the yellow, blue or green) seemed a bit dated but I can see how they could appeal to those who like more fun trendy shades.

Other new items have launched online as well including the Fall-Winter Collection and some new pink Lip and Nail Colors. I already ordered a few pieces from the fall line which I’ll review, for now I’ve decided to pass on the pink shades.

You can find the Chanel Ombre Premiere collection online at Chanel.com and also at all other counters now. The shadows are listed as limited-edition. Have you tried these yet? What did you think?

Ombre Premiere Longwear Shadows provided for review. Brushes purchased by me.

Eye Makeup

Mascara Hits and Misses

August 4, 2017

Mascara Testing Hits and Misses

I have a new updated mascara roundup. I’ve been trying a few new formulas and have some hits and some misses. The humidity in Florida is pretty high and the sun feels a million times stronger here than it did in San Diego. Finding one that holds up to the humidity has been a process.

  • Bobbi Brown No Smudge Mascara is a formula I had purchased from a duo over last holiday. I had it sitting in the box waiting for my other tubes to get used up. I was pleasantly surprised because the reviews with this were mixed. It had zero clumping, defined lashes, volumized, coated evenly, held the curl and had no smudging. For me this is a hit.
  • Sisley-Paris So Intense Mascara is one I tried from the Nordstrom Color Twist Set (review here). Huge hit with this one even though the comb is so tiny it looks like it won’t grab lashes. It allows you to get right at the base without touching the skin. This usually isn’t a big deal for me if the mascara is good because a quick clean up with a Q-tip fixes it after application. However this one makes application easier. It volumizes, holds curl and doesn’t smudge.
  • L’Oreal Lash Paradise Waterproof is the first drugstore mascara I’ve actually liked. I’ve tried dozens and end up throwing them all away after 2 uses because they either dry to a grey looking black, smudge or don’t hold the curl. This literally was WOW with the first try. It’s everything I want in a mascara – volume, definition and holds the curl. I absolutely love the waterproof version because there is zero smudging. Blackest Black is the color I tried and it’s a true rich black. It does take more work to remove at the end of the day but is completely worth it. Huge hit.
  • Tom Ford Waterproof Extreme Mascara has to be mentioned again even though it’s not new to me because it’s my favorite waterproof mascara. No smudging, holds the curl, volumizes – huge thumbs up. I’ve repurchased this one the most in the past year.
  • Chanel Le Volume Waterproof is another classic. The regular Le Volume is good, but I prefer the Waterproof version because it holds up better in the humidity. This is one of the few rubberized applicators I like – most other brands just don’t do it for me. A classic one for me.
  • Dior Pump N Volume Mascara was a big miss. The first application was decent for volume, holding the curl and having a true rich black color. Every application after that was a clumping disaster – even when I removed excess from the tube by cleaning it. When there’s buildup, every once in a while I’ll take the wand and run it in between a folded piece of paper. It’s just like you would do with a tissue or paper towel but using paper makes it so those cotton fibers from tissue won’t get caught in the bristles. The volume on this one is really good and there are quite a few rave reviews on this one, if it didn’t clump all the time it would be perfect.
  • Serge Lutens Comb Mascara is another miss for me. I had such high hopes for this one as it came highly recommended and the online reviews on the formula were stellar. It has a similar applicator to the Sisley-Paris one. For some reason this Serge Lutens one made my lashes look spidery. It took a while to dry and smudged with a few blinks. After it dried down it had decent staying power but didn’t hold the curl and didn’t have as rich of a black finish as other ones. It wasn’t the worst but there are much better formulas for me out there.

A few notes on other mascaras I’ve loved but didn’t feature in this roundup. Other long-time favs have included the By Terry Mascara Terrybly, Chantecaille Faux Cils, Stila Huge Lash and Bobbi Brown Eye Opening Mascara. Most of these still work for me in the humid hot weather, I’ve just been rotating through different options recently. If you’ve had your eye on the Chantecaille one I highly recommend you check out the Touch-Up Essentials Set while it’s still available for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale because it’s a great deal. The only one that doesn’t work so well for me in humid weather is the By Terry option, but they do have a waterproof version which I want to investigate.

Best Makeup Remover Lancome | The Beauty Look Book

For makeup removal longer lasting formulas and waterproof ones are going to be more difficult to remove in the evenings. Most of these I have to use a multi-step process to take them off in the evenings. Regardless of whether I double cleanse with a cleansing oil or cleansing water, I always use a cotton pad and soak it with eyemakeup remover first. My favorite formula used to be the Chanel Gentle Bi-Phase Eye Makeup Remover but these days I’ve found it’s just ok. Some of the longer lasting formulas don’t come off anymore with this one and I don’t know if the formula of the makeup remover has changed or if I’m simply finding formulas with better lasting power. Some thing goes for the Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover. It used to be a long-time go to but my last bottle didn’t perform as well as I remember it did in past years. My current go-to is the Lancome Bi-Facil Double Action Eye Makeup Remover (available in this value set from Nordstrom here and here). For cotton I’ve tried a number of brands but my favorites are from Chanel and Sephora.

If I had to pick one mascara to use for the rest of the summer that would be a hard choice. I would be able to narrow it down to three: Sisley-Paris, L’Oreal and Tom Ford.

What are your favorite mascaras for the summertime?

 

Base Makeup Chanel

Chanel Les Beiges Collection Summer 2017

July 28, 2017

Chanel Les Beiges Collection Summer 2017 | The Beauty Look Book

The Chanel Les Beiges Collection this year brings us a some new products including a new foundation formula, new brush, two new cheek colors, a natural eyeshadow palette and some repromotes. I have four items I’ve been testing this month thanks to the Chanel team and am happy to report the collection exceeded my expectations. There have been mixed reviews about this year’s launch, after testing this I do think it’s going to be a hit or miss for you depending on how natural or pigmented you like your makeup. For me it’s a hit. In today’s review:

The Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint is an interesting base. If you like BB creams or dewy sheer bases you will love this one. I had expected this to be a cushion – but it’s not really cushion like. It has a soft flexible mesh top where you press a sponge into to absorb product. There was some excess that had oozed out around the edges when I opened and I swatched with my fingers and barely saw any coverage. Quick tip is to use the sponge – it’s amazing what a difference there is in application when you apply it with the sponge. I’ve been a long-time fan of the original Les Beiges Healthy Glow Colour Powder in 20 as a setting powder but subsequent Les Beiges launches have often let me down – the newer bases and tints have been tricky to work with sometimes.

Chanel Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint 30 and 40 | The Beauty Look Book

The Gel Tint compact is smaller around in size compared to other Les Beiges compacts, but it’s also taller.

Chanel Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint 30 and 40 | The Beauty Look Book

Swatches of 30 and 40:

Chanel Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint 30 and 40 | The Beauty Look Book

Comparison swatches to the Dior Dreamskin Cushion in 30 (which looks dark but actually matches once blended out), Saturday Skin All Aglow Sunscreen Perfection Cushion in 5 Honey and 6 Goldie, Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion in 25.

Chanel Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint 30 and 40 vs Dior Saturday Skin Sulwhasoo | The Beauty Look Book

Coverage is sheer but still noticeable. There’s enough coverage to cover redness, even out skintone and see color on the skin. Shade-wise I wish there were more yellow-toned options. 30 looks a bit light and pink on my skin but it does adjust and darken on me – my skin is weird these days, some foundations darken quite a bit after they dry down. 40 is the right undertone but it matches when I have a tan. As mentioned in a few recent posts, if I’m out of the sun for even 2-3 days I lose my tan very quickly. Since there is sun everywhere in Florida it’s impossible to avoid the sun – so my skintone changes frequently. Long story short – I can wear either 30 or 40.

I think the Gel Touch Cushion is better suited for normal to dry skin, but even in the hot humid weather I’ve found it stayed put all day and didn’t slide off in the humidity. You do need to set with a powder – when testing this I set with the Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Powder in 20 and it helped to tone down the glow but still keep the skin looking radiant and glowy.

Next up are the two Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Sticks in 23 (sheer warm pink) and 24 (sheer apricot). Both have a very natural sheen to them and I believe 23 and 24 are new shades. I tried these when they launched a few years ago and found the pigment lacking once you blended them out on the skin. The pigment in this years’ has improved significantly – but they are still very natural looking. They have a satiny almost velvet finish so they’re not like regular creams. I found they lasted and stayed put all day.

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Stick Blush | The Beauty Look Book Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Stick Blush | The Beauty Look Book

Last but not least is the Healthy Glow Natural Eyeshadow Palette. Reviews on this have been all over the place in terms of reviewing the pigment. I found all the colors performed well with good pigment – they are all sheer to medium for a soft natural eye though. If you’re looking for high impact rich pigment this is not the palette for you. For me it’s a great fool-proof everyday kind of palette. If you have dry lids or us a matte primer the shadows most likely won’t show up as well as they are very soft – try using a more emollient base and the colors will show up better. I used the Laura Mercier Caviar Eye Stick in Rose Gold to prep my lids.

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Natural Eyeshadow Palette Review Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

In the palette you have a sheer beige base, a soft cool brown, a soft warm brown, a satiny charcoal brown and a shimmering champagne. Everything is soft with a diffused look to them. For the person who wants natural definition to their eyes this is just perfect.

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Natural Eyeshadow Palette Review Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Natural Eyeshadow Palette Review Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

It has a similar vibe to the Dior Eye Reviver Palette which I found way too sheer and natural for me. It also reminded me a bit of the Urban Decay Naked2 Basics so I swatched them side by side.

Dior Eye Reviver vs Chanel Les Beiges Natural Eyeshadow Palette vs Urban Decay Naked2 Basics | The Beauty Look Book

A beauty look with just the Les Beiges Gel Touch Healthy Glow Tint in 30 on the left side. On the right look:

Chanel Les Beiges

Chanel Les Beiges Collection Summer 2017 | The Beauty Look Book

Bottom line I like the collection a lot more than I expected. For me the winner is the Natural Eyeshadow Palette – it’s great for everyday when you just need a little color or a fool-proof conservative palette to add definition without looking like you have a lot of makeup on. I really like this year’s launch of the Blush Sticks – the pigment is a lot better than it was a few years ago but they still look natural. For a cream they stay put for a good amount of time but that being said they’re still creams so if you’re going to be outdoors in humid weather for an extended period of time they’re not going to be budge-proof. The Gel Touch Tint is going to be hit or miss for you depending on skin tone and skin type. I think if you like moisturizing dewy bases you’ll love this. I like it more than I expected and I found a few color matches although I would prefer it to have more of a yellow/olive undertone. I did just buy the Dior Forever Perfect Cushion in 21 and Forever Undercover Concealer in 30 and 31 and I’m testing some bases from Sisley-Paris so you may want to stay tuned for those reviews.

You can find the Chanel Les Beiges collection now online at Chanel.com and at all Chanel counters. P.S. The new brushes have launched as well along with some new nail and lip colors! I’ll be reviewing some of the brushes soon – I’m currently putting them to the test.

Have you tried anything from this year’s Les Beiges collection?

Press samples include the Chanel Les Beiges Gel Tint in 30, Les Beiges Blush Sticks in 23 and 24, Les Beiges Eyeshadow Palette and Le Rouge Crayon in Beige Rose. All other items purchased by me.

 

Beauty Favorites Beauty Tools

Favorite Eye Makeup Brushes and Tools

July 19, 2017

Best Eye Makeup Brushes | The Beauty Look Book

By popular request I have an updated roundup of my beauty tools. So many of you have asked me what the best tools are for eye makeup and I’ve often referenced older posts. I was going through some recently and it’s hard to believe the last round up posts were done three years ago! Time literally flies! I’ve been building my brush collection for many years (for over a decade) and yet I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface of the tools out there. When it comes to makeup brushes and tools I’m a creature of habit. For the longest time I’ve stuck with tried and true staples from MAC because they’re consistent in quality, they have kept the same designs for years and they get the job done. I have explored a lot of other brands over the years and today I have an updated roundup of the best eye makeup tools I own.

If I could just stick with one collection/brand I would – unfortunately no single brand has everything I want. I’ve split these into categories by shape/function. Also note that I don’t have a crease on my lids so I don’t use a crease brush like most would. I do a lot of blending to get a gradient or wash with neutral colors and then I also have a lot of detail brushes I use. I do realize this is a bit of a long list – I’ve included different options from a small handful of brands I really love as some of you may have different preferences for shape, brush size, handle size/width etc.ย  I’ll round up my top picks at the end of the post as well.

Up first are the basic shadow/lid brushes. I like ones that are soft but somewhat dense so I can pick up powders. A lot of these I use for creams as well even though synthetic brushes often work better – I like the soft texture and feel. Shown below from left to right:

  • Hakuhodo J242G ($18) is a hybrid goat and synthetic fibers making it versatile for all products. It’s a smaller size making it easy to pack on color on the lids.
  • Hakuhodo B J004G ($20) is my favorite one for the lids, it’s made of goat hair and extremely soft. This is the best lid color brush I have – it picks up the perfect amount of color and blends powders seamlessly.
  • MAC 239SH ($25) is also another favorite, it’s one of my most-used brushes, the SH version is exclusive to MAC stores and online. It’s soft and dense and perfect for packing product on the lids. It’s not as soft as the Hakuhodo but still very good.
  • MAC 239 ($25) is the full size version, I like that both the full and short handle have the same size bristles.
  • Chanel Blender/Shader ($42) is a new double ended brush that’s super soft with a nice fluffy feel. The small end is also dense but fluffy, the larger side is perfect for blending.
  • Wayne Goss 18 (old, discontinued) is unfortunately discontinued but was the best option that was slightly larger than the MAC 239.
  • Chanel Large Eye Shadow Brush #25 ($38) is another great option that’s larger than the MAC 239, it’s not as dense and slightly more loose in how its packed, note that all the Chanel brushes with the silver handles (ones in the current collection) are going to be discontinued. New ones will be introduced around the 24th so if you have any current options on your wishlist you should buy them soon.
  • Marc Jacobs Beauty The Conceal ($30) is actually a concealer brush (which it’s great for) but I really love this one for cream shadows. It has a beveled/angled tip so it makes the creams apply easily to the lids.

Eye Makeup Brushes Lids and Wash | The Beauty Look Book

Out of all of these my top two are the MAC 239 and Hakuhodo B J004G. I have multiples of both kinds and they’re probably the most versatile brushes I own.

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Next are the blending brushes good for a light sweep of color, for blending or a nice wash. With some of these you will probably be able to use as a crease brushes too. I prefer the ones with white hair as they’re usually soft and super fluffy. They’re small enough so there’s some density to them. Often times I find the darker ones are a bit too loose in the way they are designed. Shown below from left to right:

  • Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush ($40) is my favorite large domed fluffy brush because of the density. It’s perfect for sweeping color on the lids for a nice wash and it’s also a great blending brush.
  • MAC 217 (also available in 217SH) ($25) is another great basic blending brush because of the softness. It’s perfect for blending out colors. For the longest time this was my favorite until I tried Tom Ford, Hakuhodo and Wayne Goss.
  • Wayne Goss 18 (from the Eye Set $130, individual $27) in terms of quality, I feel Wayne Goss has among the best brushes. They’re right up there with Tom Ford. #18 is the closest option to MAC 217.
  • Hakuhodo J5523 ($19) is made of goat hair and the equivalent of MAC 217. This one is far better in terms of how it picks up color and blends it out.
  • Wayne Goss 17 (from the Eye Set $130, individual $28) is a smaller sized fluffy brush, good for detail blending or crease blending.
  • Wayne Goss 16 (from the Eye Set $130, individual $30) is a bit longer and bigger than #18. This is a good all around blending brush.
  • Tom Ford 13 ($57) is a fluffy blending brush good for blending things up on the lid for a nice gradient. In my opinion Tom Ford brushes are the best brushes I own.
  • Tom Ford 11 ($57) is the ultimate wash brush. It applies the perfect amount of color to the lids and is super soft in feel. They’re really well made. The ones I have are made with natural bristles – at an event in the spring I was told Tom Ford was moving towards making brushes with synthetic materials but I haven’t received confirmation of when or if it has happened yet.
  • Hakuhodo J220G ($24) is a larger fluffy flat brush made of goat and synthetic fiber. I like this one and use it a lot but it’s not as dense as other ones so I prefer the other ones for density and this one for it’s size on some occasions.
  • Bobbi Brown Eye Sweep ($37) is a classic large dense fluffy round brush.
  • MAC 227SH (discontinued, $32) has been discontinued unfortunately, it’s more dense than the Bobbi Brown, but for now the BB is the next best option.

Best Blending Brushes MAC, Hakuhodo, Bobbi Brown | The Beauty Look Book

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For detail brushes my long-time go to has been the MAC 219 Pencil Brush which I’ve had for years. Unfortunately I lost mine either in the move or while traveling (but sometime in the past few months) and never got around to replacing it. It’s the best all around smudge or lining brush I’ve had but there are still quite a few others that are really good. Shown below from left to right:

  • Wayne Goss 08 (from the Anniversary Set $225, individual $17) is the tiniest detail brush I own. It’s perfect for getting into the tiny corners of the line or right along the lashes. It’s stiff but not harsh on the eyes.
  • Bobbi Brown Eye Definer (one shown is a special-edition one from a holiday set, but same as regular one) ($34) is a classic angled brush you can use for powder or gel liners. It’s also a good one for brows.
  • Wayne Goss 07 (from the Anniversary Set $225, individual $17) is the softest mini smudge brush, perfect for a smokey eye or blending out colors along the lash line.
  • Tom Ford 15 (discontinued) is the best smudge brush I have, unfortunately it’s discontinued.
  • Wayne Goss 05 (from the Anniversary Set $225, individual $20) is a super soft pencil brush, it picks up color a lot better than the MAC Pencil, but it’s smaller in size so not quite the same.
  • Laura Mercier Corner Eye Brush ($26) has been discontinued in most places, you can still find it online at a few stores right now like Bluemercury. It’s a good corner eye brush that gets color in tiny spaces with precise application but it’s large enough you can blend it out a little.
  • Hakuhodo G5514 ($17) is another great detail pencil brush to get that soft smokey eye.

Best Detail Brushes | The Beauty Look Book

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Misc brushes and tools shown below:

  • Chanel Large Tapered Blending Brush 19 ($38) this originally came in the brown natural hair, then was released in a white version, but not it appears it’s back to the brown. I have both and they both perform the same. This is a good detail blending brush – I use it for under the eye when I want a very soft diffused line or to blend out shadows along the upper lash line. It’s soft and blends colors perfectly. The shape is perfect. At this time I don’t have the full list of what brushes will be coming out around the 24th, but if this is on your list I recommend you get it soon as Chanel will be phasing out their current brushes and replacing them with a new line.
  • MAC 226 (discontinued) is the best small to medium blending brush, why they discontinued it is a mystery to me because there’s none other like it! For now one of the Wayne Goss brushes from The Eye Set (scroll up) will perform the same way, if not better because of the material it’s made of. However this one is still a really good one.
  • Wayne Goss 21 (from The Brow Set, $55) is the best brow brush for powders for me. I love that it’s wider than most and it’s super dense making it easier for me to get even application for both sides.
  • Surratt Eyelash Curler ($30) is one of the best curlers I own. It took me some time to learn to use because it’s so much wider than other brands. It performs really well.
  • MAC Eyelash Curler ($22) is my most-used lash curler. It always curls perfectly and I really like the shape.
  • Charlotte Tilbury Eyelash Curler ($22) is another good one that gets the job done without any pinching.

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That wraps up my favorite eye makeup brushes and tools post! I hope you found this helpful in case you’re looking for new tools. If I had to pick just one brand it would be nearly impossible to do – but at the moment it would probably be Wayne Goss but I’d have to add a couple from MAC. Overall great basics can be found from MAC – it’s easiest to find at stores and counters which means you can actually see and feel the brushes. For the longest time I didn’t buy brushes unless I could try them in person, but even when I lived in San Diego, I couldn’t find them all so finally had to order some sight unseen. There are a lot of great brush blogs out there so if you need more reference or comparison a google search will bring up some amazing reviews. Best quality and performance goes to Tom Ford, Wayne Goss and Hakuhodo. If I had to pick only 10 brushes to use for the rest of my life, it would be: MAC 239, MAC 217, Hakuhodo B J004, Hakuhodo J552, Edward Bess Luxury, Wayne Goss 07, Wayne Goss 08 and Wayne Goss 18.

What are your favorite tools?

Press samples include the Charlotte Tilbury Eye Lash Curler, Wayne Goss Eye Set and Anniversary Set brushes.

Chanel

Chanel Cruise Collection 2017 – Les Indispensables de L’Ete

May 31, 2017

Chanel Cruise Collection Summer 2017 Review | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel summer launched a little over a month ago with their Cruise Collection called Les Indispensables de L’Ete. I’ve been testing these a bit longer than normal as I had such mixed feelings about the products I kept trying to make them work but in the end decided I just could not. I’ve been a long time fan of Chanel and the spring/summer collections are usually my favorite. This launch had a few items that caught my eye so I ordered them sight unseen as most of it didn’t launch in stores until weeks later. I did try the remainder of the items at a counter while I was in New York but did not pick up anything else. Much to my disappointment, out of items I ordered the only things that worked for me were the nail polishes. What I hauled:

Up first are thoughts on the Les Beiges Healthy Glow Luminous Colour, I bought three shades as I found the original Sheer Colour formula ran a bit on the darker side for me.ย  The new Les Beiges line are powders described as a powder bronzer and highlighter in one with illuminating pigments. They recommend you buy one darker than your skintone to use as a bronzer and one lighter to use as a highlight. The concept sounded promising so I didn’t trying for colors that could be both a highlight or bronzer. The colors ended up swatching a bit lighter on the skin compared to what I saw in the pan. They had an almost creamy feel to the touch yet looked extremely powdery on the skin. There wasn’t enough color or pigment to use as a proper bronzer or highlighter, yet there was too much shimmer to use as a setting powder. I tried it by dusting it all over and it looked way too shimmery all over the face. I tried the deeper color ones at the counter and they looked muddy on my skin. All three shades I bought were a complete miss for me – the product just sat on my skin, even over foundation and or any tinted moisturizer. I couldn’t make these work as a highlight, bronzer or setting powder. I can’t remember the last time I was this disappointed in a makeup product, although I tend to get let down by a lot of mascara formulas.

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Luminous Powder, Light, Medium Light and Medium

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Luminous Powder, Light, Medium Light and Medium

I had high hopes for the lip colors but was also disappointed with the ones I picked. I’ve been a huge fan of the Rouge Coco Shine and Rouge Coco Stylo lip formulas. Something was missing or changed with these. The Rouge Coco Shines in this launch had a sheer streaky finish that didn’t meld well with my lips. Golden Sun is a pretty light orangey gold but on the lips went on streaky. Golden Sand should have been right up my alley but also went on a bit streaky and even though it looked sandy in the tube it went on a bit dead-looking on my lips. The Rouge Coco Stylo in Panorama was a streaky goopy mess upon contact. The color is so pretty but was an utter fail on the lips. It almost disintegrates upon contact and doesn’t apply smoothly or adhere to the lips. Perhaps I got a dud – I can’t believe this would perform that poorly considering I’ve had such great experiences with the other shades.

Chanel Cruise 2017 Rouge Coco Shine and Rouge Coco Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

On the left is Rouge Coco Shine in Golden Sun with the Medium Light Les Beiges on the cheeks. It’s hard to tell I have anything on but it just gives my skin a chalky look/finish.

On the right is the Rogue Coco Stylo in Panorama + Medium Les Beiges on the cheeks. This one too is also virtually undetectable but just looks powdery and emphasizes texture on the skin. Top from Nordstrom.

Chanel Cruise 2017 Rouge Coco Shine and Rouge Coco Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Swatches, all three are listed as limited-edition on Chanel.com:

Chanel Cruise 2017 Rouge Coco Shine and Rouge Coco Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Chanel Cruise 2017 Rouge Coco Shine and Rouge Coco Stylo | The Beauty Look Book

Last we have the four Le Vernis nail polishes. I’m a coral lover so 3 of these were perfect for me. They do have a similar vibe to many older discontinued shades. I think Chanel Coralium is pretty much identical to Dior’s Coral Crush. (Comparison swatches below.) Coquillage is a creamy light orange, Sea Whip is a pretty peach, Coralium is a coral pink, Sargasso is a color I found an odd pick for summer. It’s a very dark green with a hint of shimmer. Right now Coralium is the only one that isn’t listed as limited-edition.

Chanel Cruise 2017 Nail Polishes, Coquilage, Sea Whip, Coralium, Sargaso

Swatches with each color shown with two coats, the pigment is excellent and coverage smooth with these.

Chanel Cruise 2017 Nail Polishes, Coquilage, Sea Whip, Coralium, Sargaso

Swatch comparisons, note that both sets are the same, just with different lighting to try and show the differences in color. Most of these have been discontinued. Colors you can find now include Tulle, Sea Whip, Coralium, Turban, Espadrilles, Aventure and Coral Crush.

Chanel Cruise 2017 Nail Polishes, Coquilage, Sea Whip, Coralium, Sargaso Comparisons

Chanel Cruise 2017 Nail Polishes, Coquilage, Sea Whip, Coralium, Sargaso Comparisons

When it comes to buying things sight unseen I think it’s a given that not everything will be a hit. I’ve been lucky so far that I’ve had mostly hits even when I order things without testing first. For the most part I found this collection a miss. By now most of you who are Chanel fans have most likely seen all of these at the stores near you. If you’ve tried it I’d love to hear your thoughts. Any ideas on how you’ve been using the powders would be great to read about for me. The lip items are just not workable for me color-wise or formula-wise, but I have plenty of other lip items to keep me busy for a very long time.

You can find the Chanel Cruise collection online and in stores now. I ordered my items from Chanel.com and Nordstrom.

P.S. I’ve finally revamped my blog newsletter thanks to Chloedigital! You can subscribe here. If you’re already subscribed the default is the daily/new post notifications. If you’d prefer to change e-mails to weekly you can now change it ๐Ÿ™‚ Link is also on the top header!

Loving Right Now What's In My Bag

Effortless Beauty For Spring to Summer

May 23, 2017

Warm Weather Beauty Makeup Bag Picks | The Beauty Look Book

I’m all about the natural makeup look and with the warm weather here I’ve been into items that are easy to apply and effortless to touch up on-the-go. I’ve teamed up with Nordstrom to share a few new makeup bag finds along with some previously launched staples that I’ve been loving lately. I’ve always been a sheer glossy lip or tinted balm kind of person and right now I have tons inside my bag. I featured some of my favorite neutrals last week. Today I’ve rounded up some items that will give a bit more color and life.

First, as a lover of flat pouches, I’ve found that Nordstrom just launched some great simple pouches from Delfonics. Sometimes I just want a no-nonsense basic streamlined pouch and these small PVC zipped pouches are exactly what I needed. Right now there are two sizes available online – I ordered a couple colors in both sizes because sometimes multiples are necessary depending on what you carry. The exterior is on the thin side so I’d try to keep these for smaller items or flat products but the larger one is quite roomy so you can fit a lot in the pouch. The Large Pouch measures 10 1/4โ€W x 7 1/4โ€H x 1/2โ€D and the Medium Pouch measures 7 1/2โ€W x 5 1/2โ€H x 1/2โ€D. (Sandals below by Joie.)

Nordstrom Delfonics | The Beauty Look Book

Warm weather beauty loves, makeup beauty details and swatches below. With hot weather I’ve been using more dry shampoo simply to refresh and touch up. The humidity levels are increasing here and so I’ve been experimenting with more. The Oribe Gold Lust Dry Shampoo has been a long-time favorite. For touch ups I also really like the Armani Luminous Silk Powder Foundation. It sounds like it could be heavy based on the product name but it’s one of the most lightweight powders I’ve tried and I use to set my makeup and also for touchups. It looks natural and doesn’t cake up.

What's Inside My Bag | The Beauty Look Book

Bronzer has always been a must for me. I’ve reviewed quite a few luminous bronzers, like the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzers which double as a bronzer and highlighter in one. Some of you prefer a matte finish and the one I reach for the most is the Tom Ford Small Bronzing Powder in Terra. It’s sheer to medium and one of the lightest colors I own making it wearable and effortless. Another great option is the new NARS Sun Wash Diffusing Bronzer in Seaside. It’s the lightest option and looks peachy in the pan but wears beautifully on the face for a natural wash of color. Also I know some of you prefer the no-shimmer look, but the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Global Glow is one of the prettiest glowy bronze shades I own. I wear it on both the cheeks and eyes. Anytime I wear it on the face I always get asked, “what’s that pretty glowy highlight you have on your face?” and it’s usually this one.

Bronzers Tom Ford Terra, MAC Global Glow, NARS Seaside | The Beauty Look Book

These look dark because I swatched them with a heavy hand but I assure you they can sheer out on the face for a more natural look.

Bronzers Tom Ford Terra, MAC Global Glow, NARS Seaside, Laguna | The Beauty Look Book

Lip products are my weakness. I always carry so many with me even though I really only need 1 or 2 products max at any given time. The Clarins Instant Light Lip Perfectors are the definition of effortless beauty when it comes to tinted balms. I have and love all the shades, Apricot Shimmer is a light sheer peach. You can just add a bit of liner like Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk for color and you’re all set. They’re really easy to touch up too.

Chanel Rouge Coco Gloss in Melted Honey is a great sheer gold shimmer to add a nice soft glow. It’s sheer so if you need more color there are others to look into like Douceur or Amuse Bouche. They’re moisturizing and add a pretty shine to the lips. Louboutin launched new Meatlinudes Loubilaques and I’m OBSESSED. All the colors are amazing! Detailed review on the entire collection to come soon but the first one I’ve put on is Bronzissima which is the prettiest flawless bronze shimmer. 100% worth the splurge.

Clarins added new shades of their Instant Light Lip Comfort Oil and two of them transform in color to your lip pH to create a unique color. Tangerine is the best kind of juicy peach red for summer.

Tom Ford launched their Clutch Sized Tinted Balms early spring and I’ve been obsessed for months. There’s a light peach shade for the neutral lip lovers in L’Odissea but I adore the sheer brights like Fathom.

Warm Weather Lip Picks | The Beauty Look Book

Warm Weather Lip Picks Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

Last but not least the Tom Ford Cream Powder Eye Duos have been a staple since they first launched and Naked Bronze and Golden Peach have been favorites. They’re so easy to apply even if you’re on the go. I can apply these with the fingers and it’s pretty much goof-proof. This year they launched three new shades in Young Adonis, Sun Worship and Paradiso. I’ve already reviewed these new launches but re-swatched them side by side for reference. Paradiso is indeed different from Golden Peach but they are very similar so I don’t think you need both. I prefer the cream in Paradiso and the glitter in Golden Peach.

Tom Ford Cream Powder Eye Duos | The Beauty Look Book

Tom Ford Cream Powder Eye Duo Swatches | The Beauty Look Book

What's Inside My Bag | The Beauty Look Book

That wraps up some of my favorites for warm weather beauty! With the heat I’ve been experimenting with different bases and will have a roundup on those in the upcoming weeks. For now I hope you liked this post for ideas on effortless beauty. I included some non-neutrals but colors that are still easy to wear and natural looking. As always I’d love to hear your favorites. What are you loving these days as we transition from the spring to summer season? You can find all my picks at Nordstrom.

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Many thanks Nordstrom for partnering to sponsor this post. Press samples include lip items from Clarins and the Tom Ford Clutch Balm.