Chanel Gris Exquis ($28.50) is a limited release from the Aquarelles collection. It’s described per Chanel as an “elegant dove grey, ideal for achieving soft, romantic eye looks.” I couldn’t describe it better. The finish is matte although it’s not completely flat in texture. On my skin it goes on very blueish. I applied this alone over eye cream this afternoon and initially I felt it made my skin/eyes look aged. Taking the tips from a few readers in the Beiges posts, I tried layering it. On one eye, I layered it with a softer brown, Chanel Slate, and it looked softer on the eyes. On the other, I layered Beiges highlighter and mixed/blended on top of the Gris Exquis. The result was a well put together look which softened the blue tones. For me, since I have olive tones (Asian skin), if shadows have any hint of blue-grey, I need shimmer or else I end up looking like death. I am glad that Gris Exquis layers well (I ordered it sight unseen from Bergdorfs) although if I had seen/tried it in person first I know I would have passed.
Here are two swatches, even with a heavy swatch you can see the finish is still very soft.
Looking at my collection of greys, I noticed that even my blue greys were not quite as blue as Gris Exquis for mattes. Here are some comparisons to others including Chanel Safari, Chanel Slate, Chanel Gris Exquis, NARS Notorious, MAC Apres Ski, MAC French Grey and Laura Mercier Stone Suede.
Overall, I agree with Chanel that it is a soft, romantic and elegant. If you love blue-toned shadows then this is one you will adore. I like it, but don’t love it simply because blue-grey mattes aren’t my thing. I need shimmer, although I will say this makes a nice layering shadow. Wearing this shade alone on eyes makes me look at least 5 years older. Did you try/buy this shade yet? What are your thoughts? If you love blue-grey mattes, how do you wear them?
One last shot of the 2 Aquarelles items I purchased: Gris Exquis and Beiges.