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Dior Summer 2011 Eyeshadow Palettes in Rosy Nude 534 and Rosy Tan 754

May 2, 2011

Dior hit it big this summer with their bronzers and quints, in particular with and Rosy Nude 534 and Rosy Tan 754. I’ve featured Aurora and Sunset here along with Aloha here and Paradise here. Many of you ask me season over season “who did it best this season?” For me it typically depends on product category. Often times I cannot pick my favorite because I tend to fall in love with multiples. But to answer the question: who did it best for the eyes for summer 2011? The answer: hands down, is DIOR! I haven’t been this excited about a Dior Quint since Iridescent Leather (Fall 2008) and Goldfever (Summer 2008). The quints for summer 2011 do not disappoint.

Rosy Nude 534 and Rosy Tan 754 ($58 each) are both the prettiest palettes of shimmery neutrals I think I have ever seen. Both are medium to high frost but look lovely on the eyes without being too glitzy. The texture is soft and smooth. Pigment is rich and easily blendable. I typically can only wear 3 shades at one time per quint – I consider my eye lid space small and especially since I have no visible crease – contouring abilities are limited without looking fake. With these quints, I still prefer 3 shades but the texture is layerable and blendable enough so I have been able to wear all 5 shades at once.

How do I wear these? There are a number of ways. In the few weeks I’ve had these, I’ve typically worn 3 shades (just pick 3 in any palette) and you can layer them together:
  • Method 1: apply lightest shade first 1/2 way up the lid, smudge darkest shade on top along lash line, apply medium shade above dark color to blend upwards
  • Method 2: apply any medium shade first and mix with the darkest color in each palette blending on lids, then apply a wash of a lighter color on top to give a glow
  • Method 3: just layer lightest to darkest in a gradient pattern (lightest all over, and blend each progressively darker shade on a smaller portion of the eye, ending with the darkest shade along the lash line smudged over a pencil liner)
Rosy Nude 534 is the lighter option with: shimmering cream, shimmering sandy champagne, glowing fawn, glittery peach-pink, soft candy powder pink.

Rosy Tan 754 has a high frost pink, shimmering deep chocolate with gold flecks, frosted cool creamy white, warm frosty taupe-tan, warm cocoa satin.

They are both must haves in my opinion. Even at the high price they are still must haves. To put it into perspective for product/cost.

  • Dior costs $58 for 5 shades, approximately $11.60 for 1.2 grams
  • MAC for a shadow pan costs $11 for 1.5 grams
While I’m always one to have an eye on brands who skimp on product, I do recognize that there is so much more to a product than just the quantity of product. Yet, even a high quality product that is way overpriced is like a punch in the stomach. That being said, to me, the Dior Quints are reasonably priced for the quality, packaging, color, texture, uniqueness and convenience. I don’t need a cream base for these to apply well, although layering over a cream shadow does extend the wear for me.

Make sure you check Amy’s gorgeous reviews if you missed them on Café Makeup. Here they are swatched on my arm without any moisturizer or base (applied with fingers):

Here are comparisons to a few other neutral quints by Dior. First set has Endless Shine (Holiday 2010) and Crush Glow (Summer 2010):

Second set has Elegante and Parisian Lights (Spring 2009):

Third set has Iridescent Leather (Fall 2008) and Earth Reflection (2008):

Swatched next to Crush Glow in sunlight:

Iridescent Leather, Earth Reflection and Rosy Tan:

Elegante, Parisian Lights, Endless Shine (note these aren’t as sheer as they look on my arm, the swatches are crummy plus I think these apply wonderfully on the eye – they just need a base for better application on the arm):

Those who are interested in a nice points program, check out the Dior Diva US program (save your original receipts, authorized retailers are listed on the website). I redeemed a bunch of receipts last year for the highest tier and the gift they sent was very generous.

Overall: Dior wins my heart for eyeshadows this summer. I didn’t even test Chanel’s summer quad (because of that lime green), although I did think Chanel won for spring. Dior’s Rosy Nude and Rosy Tan are versatile, gorgeous, and wearable for year round and for any occasion. The neutrals balance out well with brights for lips and cheeks but also work as the perfect accent for neutrals on the rest of the face.


Dior Gris-Gris 034 Quint & Gris Montaigne 707 Nail Lacquer for Spring 2011

January 2, 2011

I spotted Dior’s Spring 2011 collection at Nordstrom but the tester unit seemed to be missing a few things from the previews we’ve been seeing (see magazine scan here). I wasn’t sure if they simply filled in the slots with pre-existing items temporarily or if the US really wasn’t getting all the items we’ve been seeing. The usual Dior rep was off at the time I was there, so I couldn’t verify with her. Some of the items may be Sephora exclusives. I ended up with Gris-Gris 034 Couture Colour Eyeshadow Palette and Gris Montaigne 707 Nail Lacquer – which also happens to be one of the shades from the Gris City nail polish trio.

Gris-Gris 034 is a palette of cool grey, silver, charcoal and sky blue. Using all 5 shades on the eye at one time is not practical for me – the colors are too cool-toned for my skin. I find that the best way to use this is to use 3 shades at the most from this palette and applying the paler shades with a light hand, using a dark grey or black liner smudged, then applying the middle dark charcoal shade on top blending for a smokey eye.

The colors on the outer corners have a high-frost finish when applied with a heavy hand, but blend out to a pretty soft frosty glow. Applied with a softer hand you get a nice dusting of sparkle. The middle shade is a matte dark greyish-black with the prettiest multi-colored micro sparkles. It twinkles when the slightest bit of light hits it. It’s borderline too cool for my skin, it needs a bit of tweaking with something warm like a light dusting of bronzer to make it work better for me.

Gris-Gris unique in the sense that the formula and finish of Dior Quints are hard to match from any other brand. I don’t know of a similar palette that has all 5 shades in one compact. However, the silvery shades have definitely been done before – but in separate palettes, brands and singles. For your reference, here is Dior Gris-Gris compared to other Dior Quints such as Moonlight, Smoky Crystal and Sky Glow. Below it is also compared to Chanel single eyeshadows in Platine, Silvery and Black Star. While the Gris-Gris shades aren’t identical to any of the other colors, you can see quite a few similarities in other eyeshadows.

For the nails, there was a cream pink and a cream grey shade in the tester unit. I picked Gris Montaigne 707. This comes with the same new chiseled/tapered brush that came with the Holiday Nail Lacquers (see here). I find the metallic Dior nail polishes to be a hit or miss, but this non-shimmer formula has me really impressed! You do need 2 thin coats, but the result is a smooth and glossy and the formula is non-goopy. It also seems to dry faster than most nail polishes I’ve tried. A big thumbs up for me.

Two coats, no base or top coat:

I went through my nail polish stash and didn’t find many non-shimmery greys. The only one I have is RBL Stormy (which you can see is lighter than Gris Montaigne). Here is the Dior compared to other silvery greyish colors.


Dior Holiday 2010: Endless Shine, Timeless Gold, Czarina Gold & Pink Stiletto

October 10, 2010
I spotted a preview of Dior’s Holiday Minaudiere from British Beauty Blogger back in July and have been dreaming about the holiday collection ever since then. The clutch-like compact they designed this year is beautiful! Kari from Fab Over Forty showed us the Saks grey version earlier last week and as soon as I saw it I ran to my Nordstrom to check out the pink version. I put it aside as a pre-sale item for an event but picked up a few other things from their holiday collection that they had in stock (hence the title “round one”).

What I picked up: Pink Stiletto #234 Addict Lip Gloss, Endless Shine #529 Quint, Timeless Gold #226 Nail Polish & Czarina Gold #916 Nail Polish

Endless Shine Quint – This one comes in the Iridescent formula and all shades have a high level of frost, much like Earth Reflection, Goldfever, Crush Glow, Ready to Glow etc. The colors are highly pigmented and smooth making them easy to blend. This quint seems better suited for spring or summer but is still neutral enough to pull off year round. It’s beautiful and much more wearable than the quints from the past few seasons (Misty Mauve, Crush Glow and Ready to Glow). I rarely wear all five shades at one time – there’s simply not enough space on my eyelids to fit all the colors. They do layer and blend together beautifully. Do I think it’s a must-have? Dior quints have beautiful pigmentation and complex colors that you can’t easily find elsewhere. However I think you can definitely find similar shades in other lines. I personally could not find any dupes – the closest quad I could find was Chanel’s Shimmering Dunes which is significantly less frosty and still different among all the colors.

In direct sunlight:

*Updated* better swatches than my original ones:

Chanel Shimmering Dunes versus Dior Endless Shine:

*Update* Comparisons to a few other quints so you can see how different Endless Shine is:

Pink Stiletto Lip Gloss – This is one of those colors that made my jaw drop. It’s a gorgeous light warm pink with gold flecks. Very sheer but just absolutely stunning in the tube. I couldn’t find anything similar – it’s like a pink version of Bobbi Brown’s Rose Gold Gloss but with gold flecks added. Simply stunning. From the photos you may think it resembles MAC’s Nymphette – but it’s very different. This is one you have to see in person to really see how beautiful it is. I haven’t noticed much of a difference between the original addict reflect gloss and the new formula except the packaging/tube size. These are still smooth with a high gloss finish. Lasting power is not the best.

Timeless Gold & Czarina Gold Nail Polishes
– I was pleasantly surprised by both shades. There were no testers at the counter yet because they didn’t receive their display but I knew I had to have them both. Timeless Gold has a similar finish to Silver Pearl from last spring. High frost, rich pigment, almost foiled-like finish but has a non-streaky finish. Czarina Gold is a black-gold with a somewhat sheer formula. You will need 3 thin coats for a full finish but it’s also stunning. When I first pulled my other black-golds I thought “oh no, I’ve wasted another $20-something on a color I already have dupes of.” I will say from arm’s length it looks similar to D&G Stromboli and MAC Seriously Hip, but the Czarina Gold is the best in my opinion because the base has the slightest hint of plum-brown which prevents it from looking greenish as some black-golds can look.

Left: Timeless Gold
Right: Czarina Gold

Another interesting detail I noticed – Dior has changed the brush this season to have a wider/flatter tip that is slightly chiseled and tapered. See below how it compares to the old version and also Chanel’s brush tip. I can’t say I like one over the other, although this new chiseled tip is very unique and had me ooohing and aaahing as I was swatching the colors.

Comparison shades:
I could not find a dupe for Dior Timeless Gold, although Chanel Kaleidoscope is strikingly similar. The differences are that the Dior is less streaky but it lacks that greenish/olive tinge that the Chanel has.

Czarina Gold comparisons: What you see in the bottles is slightly deceiving, scroll down for the swatches to see what I mean.

The collection is absolutely stunning. When I went to the counter they didn’t have the display unit up but my sales associate pulled everything for me to see. They didn’t have the Five Golds Quint for sale (although the tester is to die for) and the other gloss was way too glittery for my taste. I was surprised there wasn’t anything for the cheeks this season but was happy for my wallet. I passed on all their “sets” (minaudiere excluded) because I felt like the full sized individual items were better suited for my coloring.

Dior Misty Mauve Quint 844 & Tailored Mauve Addict Ultra-Gloss 692

July 5, 2010
Dior Fall 2010 has arrived in Nordstroms although the full tester unit wasn’t up yet, the counter did have the testers scattered in the regular tester unit. I picked up the Misty Mauve Quint $58 and Tailored Mauve Lipgloss $26.50 – both stunning colors for fall. I probably won’t be wearing this for a few months until fall arrives, they seem a bit too cool-toned for summer wear.

In direct sunlight:

The Misty Mauve quint has a good mix of mauve shades which will allow you to achieve a diverse range of looks from neutral to smokey. It does appear more mauve and a bit more subdued compared to the promotional photos released by Dior, but is still pretty in my opinion. While the colors in this palette might not be the most original, I love the texture and finish of these particular shades and they are well coordinated. As a lover of neutral shades, I think this is a good palette for those who want something smokey but not too dramatic. I call it a natural-smokey eye palette with a bit of attitude.

I’ve had a little debate with a fellow makeup fan of mine about this new quint. She thought it unoriginal and something Dior has done a million times before. It’s possibly similar to the purple palette Nordstrom released last year for their anniversary sale (which I do not have), but in terms of the quints I own, it seems quite different. I will say the lighter shades definitely seem familiar. Looking back on past quints, it appears that I have neglected them. I need to use these more often. In the past year I find myself using Chanel, Edward Bess, D&G and Paul & Joe more frequently.

Per reader request from the comments, you can see it’s very different from Chanel Kaska Beige. Here it is also compared to Chanel Enigma.

Dior Addict Ultra-Gloss in Tailored Mauve 692:

Tailored Mauve is a pretty purple-pink gloss. I was worried it would be too purple on the lips and I normally don’t try out tester glosses on my lips, but my SA pulled out a brand new tester so I felt safe trying it out. It was surprisingly wearable and I normally can’t pull off purpley shades. I need a smidge of pink or red in my purple-tones. This will look good with a classic smokey bronze eye (like NARS Cordura) or even a classic smokey eye (like Chanel Enigma or Mystic Eyes). I find that it goes extremely well with the Misty Mauve quint and isn’t overly purple when worn together. It’s semi-sheer to medium with a lovely glossy finish. No detectable scent. Lasting power isn’t the greatest, but I don’t mind reapplying lipgloss regularly throughout the day.

L to R: Chanel Imaginaire, MAC Cultured, Dior Tailored Mauve,
Laura Mercier Violet, Chanel Delight

I checked out the other items. There are a number of new gorgeous Serum de Rouge shades in bright pinks, plums and mauves. Nordstrom is doing a GWP for their Anniversary Sale, so I had my sales associate put aside a couple to qualify for the gift later in the month. I’m also testing out samples of their new Hydra Life skincare line. So far, so good and it’s surprisingly well priced. Will be writing a review once I feel I’ve tested it long enough to get a good feel for how it works on my skin.

Swatches of my Dior Fall Picks (Serum de Rouges not included b/c they are being held for the Anniversary Sale):


Dior Summer Quints Part 2: Swatches + Comparisons

April 8, 2010
I was able to play around with my new Dior Summer Quints a bit more and find them amazing! Please note the swatches don’t do the actual product justice, these were swatched on a bare arm so the color on the lighter shades don’t show up as well with the flash washing it out a bit.
If I had to pick 1 quint for the summer, it would definitely be Ready-To-Glow, it just seems more unique to me. Although Crush Glow is equally gorgeous, I know I will get good use out of both! The pigment is medium-to-rich, texture easily blendable, finish is glowy and shimmery. The frost is definitely on the higher end, but I don’t find these overly frosty. That being said, I typically only use 3 shades at a time from a Dior Quint. Using all 5 just isn’t very practical for my eyeshape and skintone, although the concept is quite appealing. I simply cannot pull off that many shades at once on my small eyelid area.

Dior Ready-To-Glow 649 + Comparisons:

Dior Crush Glow 659 + Comparisons:

* Note for Lexi – I know you wanted a dupe for the center shade, I compared it to MAC at the counter today, it’s most similar to Paradisco, but the Dior is a lot more pigmented, and a bit lighter
– I tried to save my hand swatch, but it didn’t last the car ride home

I won’t be swatching the comparisons. It took a great deal of effort to find dupes because the colors just seemed so unique to me. The Dior Summer Quints all have a multi-dimentional quality which creates a “glow” like the names imply. YMMV depending on your screen, but I couldn’t find exact dupes for any of the Summer Quints, so I pulled what I thought was the closest in color family to provide a comparison and help you gauge the colors depending on your computer screen.

While $58 USD is pricey for an eyeshadow palette, if you factor in the convenience , quality, pigment and price per eyeshadow, it comes to about $11.60 for 1.2 grams. My MAC Eyeshadows range from 1.3 to 1.5 grams for $11.00 (pro-palette form) or $14.50 so if you think about the price in those terms, Dior isn’t really too bad. Overpriced, yes, but RIDICULOUSLY overpriced, no. (Then again, this is only my opinion.)

I didn’t see much else featured in this collection – they are featuring 3 of the Lip Polishes 001, 002 and 003 (which were a Sephora exclusive before) along with some of the new Addict Glosses. There is also a liptint/lipgloss charm in a heavy silver compact with chain. The tester unit wasn’t set up fully, and it seemed to have random testers put in the empty slots. My SA at Nordstrom said she hadn’t received everything yet and wasn’t sure when the rest would be arriving, so I’m not sure if there are any nail polishes or blushes featured with this collection.


Get Your Glow On with Dior Summer Quints: Ready-To-Glow 649 & Crush Glow 659

April 6, 2010
Dior Summer 2010 has arrived in-store with two stunning quints, Ready-To-Glow 649 and Crush Glow 659. This is only a preview, I don’t have swatches, comparisons, or a full review yet, but stay tuned for an update in the next day or so. Both come in the Iridescent Eyeshadow formula and retail for $58 each. Indeed the names are suitable for both palettes because they radiate pure lovely glowiness when you open the compacts.

Ready-To-Glow 649 is a neutral-cool palette. It seems like a more neutral variation of Smoky Crystal 089, which I’m completely in love with, but the new summer quint has less intense-contrasts in colors and softer more muted shades.

Crush Glow 659 is the warmer variation, which I am happy to report isn’t too warm as I had initially thought it would be based on preview pictures. Still, it’s on the warm side, but lovely and very wearable.

I haven’t had a chance to test these on my eyes, but the testers at Nordies were extremely soft and pigmented. It seems that the summer collections come out earlier every year. This collection seems suitable for spring, although their Spring Lace Collection was equally stunning and suitable for spring. I’m just happy they released a mini collection that seems to be well suited for year round – at least in Southern California.

Again, note that my work is copyrighted, please do not republish or hotlink my photos. Thanks!


Dior Mystic Smokys 5-Colour Eyeshadow

March 2, 2010

Four new 5-Colour Eyeshadow Quints have been released in the US with a new formula. There are 2 new shades and 2 existing-reformulated shades. I was drawn to the Mystic Smokys 004 palette which features a good mix of pale and intense deep shades to give you a nice smoky eye that isn’t your typical black/grey.

With high flash:

I love Dior Quints because they convey a sense of urban-chic with a bit of edge. I find they have great pigment and lovely color combinations even though I rarely use all 5 shades at once. They are convenient and they have a diverse range of colors to suit just about any look you want to achieve. The Mystic Smokys looked stunning at the counter but when I got home, I realized most of the shades aren’t really all that unique. Here is the quint compared to a few other brands and colors.

* Dark purple shade = Dior Ultra Violet or MAC Deep Purple Pigments

* Sparkley silver shade = Dior Argentic or MAC Charred

* Smokey grey-brown shade = no dupe, but close to P&J 17 or Bobbi Brown Java Metallic, darker than MAC French Grey

* Bottom champagne shade = close to MAC Quick Frost or Universal Mix Pigments

* Center cool pink shade = I couldn’t find an exact dupe, but it has a similar finish to Armani Maestro 29 and MAC Phloof

(Note, I ran out of room on the arm so I didn’t swatch the paler pink shades)

I this quad is easily dupeable. The benefit is in the convenience in that it combines multiple shades into one compact which is nice for an all-in-one palette. I like that you can use a damp brush on the darker shades to intensify the colors. The darker colors all seem to be fairly dark. My first smokey eye attempt to use this palette today ended in a punched-eye look, so I ended up taking it all off and was lazy so I just did foundation, powder, bronzer and my EB lippies (no eye makeup).

All around nice palette, but not a must-have in my opinion, especially not at the price. If you were contemplating this palette, it’s good if you don’t have a smokey eye palette. It’s much more wearable than Chanel’s Smokey Eye Palette because the Dior is not all black/grey based. If you’re iffy on this, I’d say wait for summer! The previews that have been popping up on other blogs looks promising!