Browsing Tag

Spring 2016


Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick Swatches – Spritzer, Eggplant, Jam, Beetroot, Liquorice, Tannin, Sour Cherry and Black Truffle

March 9, 2016

I have the last batch of the Amuse Bouche Lipsticks ($26 each, Sephora) lip-swatched in the cool-toned purples, plums and blue-based reds. Above left to right includes Spritzer, Eggplant, Jam, Beetroot, Liquorice, Tannin, Sour Cherry and Black Truffle. Out of all the colors, the only shade I had issues with was Black Truffle – but that is probably due to the sharp contrast the color has to my natural lip color. It was the only shade I found slightly patchy in application with one swipe. A few swipes evens out the color though. Swatches and descriptions of the colors:

Shown above from left to right:

  • Spritzer is described as a plum rose, to me it’s a lilac color that has some depth
  • Eggplant is described as a smoky plum, I find it to be a cool-toned purple
  • Jam is described as a rich merlot, it’s a deep berry plum
  • Beetroot is described as a bold berry, this is one of the brighter colors in the cool-toned plum color family, on my lips it looks more pink but doesn’t turn fuchsia
  • Liquorice is described as an oxblood shade, it’s a deep wine color with brown tones, this one had a bit of migrating around the edges on my bare lips, it didn’t slide off, but I found it slightly more emollient than the others
  • Tannin is a described as a poppy red, this one is more of a neutral-warm red on me with slight brick undertones
  • Sour Cherry is described as a maraschino red, I found this to be my perfect deep blue-red and lasting power is phenomenally good with this one
  • Black Truffle is described as a black violet, I think that’s an accurate description, this one frightened my husband when he saw it on me but he did say, “I guess some people might really like a dramatic look” – so there you go, my husband calls this shade “dramatic”
Lip swatches:

All the colors in this particular post are bold cool-tones. All of these are clearly outside of my comfort zone although I found myself smitten with Sour Cherry as the perfect blue-toned cherry red. I’ll have a roundup with final thoughts on this formula in the next few hours. I hope you found these swatches helpful! I’ve done several lipstick swatch posts in the past where I’ve been fortunate enough to receive all the colors in a launch to swatch for you such as the Marc Jacobs Beauty Le Marc Lip Cremes and Buxom Bold Gel Lipsticks. In the past I swatched all the colors in a single post – I know some of you have mentioned it can be hard to see swatches with smaller images for the lip swatches. This time I split up the colors by category into a mini-series with larger lip swatch images. Let me know which format you find easier to follow or if you have a preference!

You can find the Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks at Sephora for $26 each.
Lipsticks provided courtesy of Bite Beauty for review consideration.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks – Pickled Ginger, Gazpacho, Persimmon, Cayenne, Gingersnap, Sweet Cream, Maple

March 9, 2016

I have two more sets of lip swatches for the Amuse Bouche Lipsticks ($26 each, Sephora). This set includes warm reds and orangey colors – all bright high-impact bolds. Shown in this post are the colors Pickled Ginger, Gazpacho, Persimmon, Cayenne, Gingersnap, Sweet Cream and Maple. All of these performed equally well. The color is rich and opaque and finish is smooth and streak-free. For colors this bold I do find myself needing to even out the edges with a lip brush since there is such a sharp contrast with the color to my natural lip tone. The colors cover the lip entirely with one swipe. I swatched straight from the tube and fixed the edges with a brush to show the full color. I do think some of them look best when blotted slightly – that’s for my own personal taste though. I have very full lips and bright colors tend to make them look bigger and fuller – I need to blot to tone down the color but even with one blot the colors are still very pigmented.

The color descriptions and also how I see them:

  • Pickled Ginger is described as an electric coral, which I find accurate, it has a slight pink undertone to it on my lips
  • Gazpacho is described as a true blue red, on my lips it’s a bright cool-toned red
  • Persimmon is described as an intense red-orange, I find it as described with orange undertone very visible in the finish
  • Cayenne is described as a bright red, this what I’d call a true red
  • Gingersnap is described as a fresh peach, it looks more neutral in the tube, but once it goes on my lips, it looks like a bright almost Miami-peach kind of shade
  • Sweet Cream is described as a muted peach is a deeper and slightly more muted version of Gingersnap (I find Sweet Cream more wearable)
  • Maple is described as a brick red, this is one of the prettiest brick reds I’ve tried that isn’t too brown, but has enough depth to look like a stunning deep red

I rarely ever wear colors as bold as these. I’m a neutral lip lover because it’s what I feel most comfortable in. Out of all these my top two favorites are Sweet Cream and Maple although I am really pleased to see that Bite Beauty launched a number of reds that don’t turn fuchsia on my lips (my lip tends to make reds look blue or bright pink). I put three of these to the test for a full day (Sweet Cream, Pickled Ginger and Maple) lasting power of the colors was excellent. They lasted about as long as Sorbet did (around 4-5 hours without fading). I was pleased to find no bleeding or creeping occurred with the edges of the colors.

I’ll have one last set of swatches and a final roundup soon. Have you picked up any of the bold reds? You can find the Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks at Sephora for $26 each.

Lipsticks provided courtesy of Bite Beauty for review consideration.

Barneys New York GWP

Barneys New York Love Yourself Event: March 8 – 12

March 8, 2016

The Barneys New York Love Yourself Event starts today March 8th and runs through March 12th (while supplies last). This is one of the best gift with purchase events for beauty that I’ve shopped over the years. It usually only happens twice a year for Barneys and with any $200+ order in beauty or grooming (cosmetics, skincare, fragrance, men’s or women’s) you get a complimentary gift bag filled with selected Barneys favorites. There are two gift bag options, one for men and one for women – the sampling selection is top notch. I always find great minis to try out and some favorites I like to keep for when I travel. Today I’ve teamed up with Barneys to share the women’s gift along with a selection of some luxury favorites in case you’re in need of recommendations or ideas. The event happens in store and also online – over the past several years I’ve ordered through both methods which have worked equally well. I do recommend you put together your lists and order sooner than later as the gifts usually do run out every year.

Here’s a list of the contents of the women’s gift which comes in a zip cosmetic case. Contents per bag may have a few variations for scent options or colors (as indicated below):

  • Armani Eyes to Kill Mascara 2 ml
  • 3LAB M Cream Ultimate Lift 6 ml
  • Chantecaille Mini Brilliant Gloss 1.5 ml (assorted colors, Lucky shown above)
  • Costume National Parfum in Soul 1.5 ml
  • Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye 3 ml
  • Malin + Goetz Geranium Face Cleanser 15 ml
  • Moroccanoil Fragrance Originale Body Souffle 20 ml
  • Oribe Supershine Moisture Cream 15 ml
  • R & Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo 75 ml/1.6 oz
  • REN Keep Young and Beautiful Beauty Shot 3 ml
  • Ritual Wai Wang Body Scrub 70 ml
  • Bellatora Cellular Renewal Cream 12 ml
  • Tatcha Deep Brightening Serum 10 ml
  • Givenchy Phenomen Eye or Mini Le Rouge 1.5 g
  • La Mer New Lifting Eye Serum 3 ml
  • NARS Audacious Mascara mini 3 ml
  • Byredo Mojave Ghost mini 2 ml
  • Maison Martin Margiela mini spray 1.2 ml (assorted options Sunday Morning or Beach Walk)
  • Rene Furterer Hair Care (assorted options)
  • Raw Spirit mini 1 ml (assorted Desert Blush or Summer Rain)
  • Verso Reviving Eye Mask packet

The men’s grooming bag (not shown) contains:

  • Ulrich Lang NY Fragrance – Lightscape and Nightscape mix 50 ml
  • Byredo Sunday Cologne 1 ml
  • Rituals for Men Magic Shave cream 70 ml
  • Kieh’s Facial Fuel Heavy Lift Moist 7ml DLX
  • La Mer Eye Concentrate
  • Chantecaille Magnolia healing emulsion 8ml
  • Malin + Goetz Grapefruit Face cleanser
  • Aesop Mouthwash
  • Harry’s 4oz Aftershave Moisturizer
  • 3LAB M Cream 6 ml
  • Tatcha Deep Brightening serum
  • Raw Spirit Assorted: Winter Oak or Citadelle
  • Verso Reviving Eye Mask
  • Illuminum Assorted: Tahitian Yuzu Vaporizor, Vetiver OUD, Bergamot Blossom Vaporizor, Phool, Rajamusk Vaporizor, or Hindi OUD, 1.5 ml each
  • Tizian Terenzi Assorted: White Fire or Ecstasy
  • Sisley Botanical D-Tox 2ml
  • Bellatorra Cellular Renewal Cream 12 ml
  • Marital Vivot Shampoo
I’ve rounded up ten luxury items in cosmetics and fragrance featuring some brands almost never go on sale. These kinds of events are the best time to splurge on things like Diptyque, Byredo or even on luxury skincare.

Some of my favorites and a few new recent discoveries featured above:
  1. Frederic Malle Carnal Flower ($74 to $380) is one of my most favorite perfumes of all time. There are several different sizes that you can purchase. The travel sprays come individually for most fragrances or in a set of 3. The set or full size bottles are a better buy price per oz wise but if you just want to try one and see how it wears, I think buying the individual ones are the best way to go. It’s the best tuberose I’ve tried.
  2. Le Labo Travel Trios in Santal 33 ($145 for ml) is my latest perfume splurge. I ordered mine last week because I could not wait for the event. Again I decided to go the travel size route (I’m splitting this one with a friend for her to try one). So far I’m obsessed. It has a mix of sandalwood, virginia cedar, cardamom, violet, papyrus, spices, leather, musk and amber.
  3. Byredo La Selection Perfume Set ($145) this is a discovery set that has an assortment of 6 Byredo scents including Bal D’Afrique, Blanche, La Tulip, Black Saffron, Gypsy Water, Oud Immortel, I’ve had mine since the holiday and love it as a way to explore a number of fragrances without having to splurge on the full size bottle (my favorites are Bal D’Afrique and Black Saffron).
  4. The Laundress Detergent x Le Labo Signature Detergent in Rose ($45, also in Santal) is something I discovered through one of my readers via Instagram, I’ve since purchased and tried both, I prefer the Rose because I think the scent is stronger and more noticeable. It’s a soft sweet rose that I’m obsessed with for washing bed sheets. It’s noticeable but still soft enough that it won’t keep you awake at night.
  5. Diptyque Baies Mini Candle ($32) is a classic, if you’re unsure about buying the full size the travel mini is a good way to ease into the brand.
  6. Byredo Hand Cream in Gypsy Water ($35, also available in Flowerhead, Blanche, La Tulipe and Bal D’Afrique) is as luxurious as hand creams get.
  7. NARS Lip Gloss in Chelsea Girls ($26) is one of my most reached-for peachy nudes these days. I’ll repost a swatch of it below for reference.
  8. Lipstick Queen Seven Deadly Sins in Indolence ($24) is a pretty sheer to medium classic rose pink gloss. It has no detectable scent and has a nice natural healthy color to it.
  9. Surratt Beauty Prismatique Lips in Lili Doree ($36) gives the lips the prettiest wash of shimmer, it’s a peachy shade that makes for a very youthful luminous glow.
  10. Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powders ($38 each) are some of the prettiest powder highlighters I’ve tried. I think all four shades are winners but I’ve been reaching for Brilliant the most. 
  11. By Terry Baume de Rose in Coral Stellar and Mauve Moon (not shown above) are two of the latest tinted lip balm launches from By Terry. The colors are to die for gorgeous and if you were looking to shop these but didn’t want to splurge, the Barneys gift event might be a good time to buy because you get goodies for splurging.

By Terry Mauve Moon and Coral Stellar swatches reposted:

You can find the Love Yourself gift with purchase online and in stores at Barneys New York now through March 12 while supplies last. I recommend ordering soon if you have your eye on anything. The gift bag should be added to your cart automatically as soon as the contents total $200 in beauty (men’s or women’s). Are you ordering anything yet for this event? If you do – please let me know! Would love to hear about what you hauled!

This post was created in partnership with Barneys New York. More information in my disclosures but as always all opinions my own.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks – Gin Fizz, Cotton Candy, Dragonfruit, Kimchi, Radish and Sangria

March 6, 2016

There are a lot of bright cool-toned pinks in the Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche lipstick lineup. I’m not typically one who likes to wear cool-toned pinks because they often clash with my yellow/olive skin undertones. Every one of these pinks is perfect in terms of perfect coverage and smooth texture. I personally can only see myself wearing a couple of these colors comfortably (Radish or Sangria) – most are outside my comfort zone but they are remarkably gorgeous. If I’m feeling brave I will probably wear one of the lighter shades mixed with a bit of a neutral liner to tone down the brightness. In this post includes the colors Gin Fizz, Cotton Candy, Dragonfruit, Kimchi, Radish and Sangria. They are bright and creamy but don’t bleed around the edges (with or without liner). I think there are a few shades in this lineup that are extremely similar Gin Fizz and Cotton Candy look almost identical and also Dragonfruit and Kimchi are very close in color.

Color descriptions:

  • Gin Fizz is a cool-toned bright pink described as an orchid pink
  • Cotton Candy is also a cool-toned pink, described as a blue-toned violet, it’s similar to Gin Fizz but Cotton Candy is slightly lighter and has a more powdery looking feel on the lips
  • Dragonfruit is a fuchsia pink 
  • Kimchi is a bright high impact hot pink, it’s also similar to Dragonfruit, Kimchi is slightly lighter while Dragonfruit has a slightly deeper undertone and finish
  • Radish is an amazing magenta berry red, the flash brings out some of the brightness, in natural light it looks a bit deeper on the lips
  • Sangria is a rich blue-toned pink but has more warmth and red compared to the others

Lip swatches on bare lips, they have full opaque coverage with one swipe. For skintone reference I’m wearing Becca Aqualuminous Foundation in Beige on the skin.

Bite just may have changed my mind about cool-toned pink lip colors. I’ve been kinda liking the look of Gin Fizz on my lips. Radish is the perfect special occasion date night kind of lip when I’m feeling bolder. I do think some of these are very similar – but the best thing about these is that they have different undertones. I know many beauty lovers are very particular about undertone for their skintones – so even though they are similar I can appreciate the fact that Bite seemed to take this into consideration to suit different skintones – you can find one whether you’re skin undertones are olive, pink, peach or neutral or cool.

You can find the Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks at Sephora for $26 each.

Full review on formula, ingredients, texture, lasting power posted here.

Swatches of neutrals Souffle, Sugarcane, Honeycomb, Meringue, Sake, Pepper and Rhubarb in this post here
Lipsticks provided courtesy of Bite Beauty for review consideration.


Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks – A First Look + Swatches of All 34 Shades

March 4, 2016

Bite Beauty reformulated their Luminous Creme lipsticks into a new and improved formula called Amuse Bouche ($26 each for .15 oz/4.35g, made in Canada). There are 34 shades total that are exclusive to Sephora (instores and online). I had a few favorites in the original Luminous Creme formula (they had some really good neutrals) which I found to be a creamy lipstick with a glossy finish and medium coverage. The new Amuse Bouche Lipsticks offer a lot more pigment and coverage while still maintaining that creamy feel. I feel like the new ones are creamier in texture with a super lush finish and look but they are lightweight in the way they feel. I teamed up with Bite to feature one of the shades Sorbet (a gorgeous watermelon pink) – if you follow them on Instagram @bitebeauty you will see a new shade showcased each day in a fun way by different digital influencers and swatches on different skintones too.

I have a first look at all the shades plus thoughts on the formula as I’ve been playing with all 34 shades over the past few weeks. I’ll say upfront that I give the new Amuse Bouche lipstick formula an A+ rating. They are one-swipe wonders with a luminous full coverage finish that doesn’t look flat. As one who often finds nude shades hard to pull off, I was thrilled to find a number of good wearable neutrals in this launch (although there are a couple that are too pale for my liptone).

My thoughts by category:

  • Formula / Texture / Pigment – The Amuse Bouche are creamy and smooth. The texture is very soft and glides on the lips but there’s enough thickness so you can feel it adhere well to the lips. Pigment is incredibly rich – I can get full smooth coverage with one swipe, but as with most lipsticks I do at least a couple so I can get even application around the edges and then fill in. I like applying these straight from the tube. Some of the darker colors require a lip brush to get the edges precise. For me it’s always hard to apply dark colors evenly around the edges of the lips so I recommend lining with a lip pencil first if you’re dark-lip challenged like me. Texture is super creamy but still lightweight so you don’t get a heavy feel.
  • Lasting Power –  Lasting power is very good. If you look at my Sorbet review, I have the initial application shot and another lip swatch of the color 5 hours later. Some of the darker berry colors do stain the lips so the color will last longer even as it fades. I had on Eggplant yesterday while swatching and decided to leave it on to see how it would wear. It lasted from around noon until late evening and didn’t budge at all. Colors in general last a long time without budging or bleeding. I did have a tiny bit of smudging with Liquorice – it kept migrating on one side of my lips, but it could be easily fixed with a lip pencil first.
  • Color Selection – Color selection is incredible. All the colors are creams (so no shimmer). They are full pigmented creams but don’t look flat on the lips. I think Bite did an amazing job at color selection. There is a shade for everyone in this launch. The only category I can think of where the shades are a bit limited are browns and there are no taupes – but I don’t really wear colors in either category so I’m really thrilled with the selection of neutrals and mauves.
  • Overall Feel – These are creamy, lightweight, hydrating and have an incredible slight citrus scent. It smells delicious but they do not have a noticeable taste.
  • How it compares to other bold creamy lipsticks:
    • Marc Jacobs Le Marc Lip Cremes by comparison have a more velvety finish. The color selection for the Marc Jacobs Le Marc Lip Cremes in general is bolder and more edgy in color selection. There were a lot of reds and orange options while the neutral category was limited. The texture of the Marc Jacobs lipsticks is a bit thicker while the Bite Beauty formula is more creamy and luminous. Both are equally good in terms of full coverage pigment and lasting power.
    • Charlotte Tilbury K.I.S.S.I.N.G has a similar full coverage creamy texture, I would say the Bite Beauty formula has a more creamy feel and hydrating texture while the Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks aren’t as moisturizing. Color selection of Bite is a lot better and the shade range has more edgy options.
    • Buxom Bold Gel Lipsticks come in a Satin and Matte finish. I’ll compare the Satin Formula which I find creamy like the Bite Beauty Lipsticks. The finish and formula are different between the two. The Buxom Bold Gel Lipsticks in the Satin Finish being gels are more lightweight in texture. I can’t say I have a preference for one over the other, both are really good. Both have a creamy feel, a semi-glossy finish, good pigment, great color options.
I will have lip swatches for each set in upcoming posts. Since there are 34 shades in total I wanted to split up the posts into color category so it would be less overwhelming with the amount of photos. Here’s a quick repost of the packaging and ingredients in case you missed my feature on Sorbet.

First a quick look at some of the older Luminous Creme formula compared to the Amuse Bouche formula. I only had a few of the Luminous Creme Formula in Musk, Fig and Pepper. Below are some comparison swatches. You can see it clearly with Pepper the new formula is a lot more pigmented and creamy while the original has more of a glossy sheen.

  • Souffle
  • Sugarcane
  • Honeycomb
  • Meringue
  • Sake
  • Pepper
  • Rhubarb

Corals and Oranges
  • Picked Ginger
  • Gazpacho
  • Persimmon
  • Cayenne
  • Gingersnap
  • Sweet Cream
  • Maple

  • Spritzer
  • Eggplant
  • Jam
  • Beetroot
  • Liquorice
  • Tannin
  • Sour Cherry
  • Black Truffle

Cool-toned Pinks
  • Gin Fizz
  • Cotton Candy
  • Dragonfruit
  • Kimchi
  • Radish
  • Sangria

All the others
  • Verbena
  • Sorbet
  • Fig
  • Chai
  • Molasses
  • Nori


Overall a solid lipstick launch. There’s lots to love and play with in this new formula. I think Honeycomb, Meringue, Sake and Pepper are the perfect neutrals (even for my pigmented lips). I can’t get enough of Honeycomb these days. I do wish I had been able to grab a few of the original formula before they were pulled from stores. There were a couple of shades I had on my wishlist for a while but they weren’t repromoted in the new launch.

Have you checked out the formula yet? I think you should! Lip swatches and lipstick photographs to follow in each of the five categories soon. You can find the Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipsticks for $26 each exclusively at Sephora.

Many thanks to Bite Beauty for sending all the colors for me to play with.


Chanel Rouge Coco Stylo Complete Care Lipshine

February 18, 2016

There’s a new lipstick formula from Chanel called the Rouge Coco Stylo ($37 each for 2 g/0.07 oz) which comes in a slim twist-up tube that’s described as having “the intensity of a lipstick, the shine of a lipgloss and comfort of a lip balm.” It truly is a three-in-one kind of lipstick. These have medium to full pigment – coverage is a lot better than the Rouge Coco Shines and just as much pigment as the Rouge Coco Lipsticks. Out of all the Chanel lipstick formulas I’ve tried the new Rouge Coco Stylos are definitely the most creamy in texture and most hydrating in feel. There is a soft floral scent to these similar to the Rouge Coco lipsticks. The formula is quite amazing and all the colors are knock out beautiful. There’s a tiny bit of shimmer in the tubes, but on the lips it’s very subtle. You mostly see color and shine.

There are neutral and bright colors in the mix, there are eight shades total:
  • Conte 202 is a baby pink with golden shimmer
  • Article 204 is a bright warm tangerine with a vibrant finish
  • Histoire 206 is a bright coral shade, on me it pulls red
  • Roman 208 is bright fuchsia pink
  • Recit 212 is a plum shade with gold flecks
  • Message 214 is a warm watermelon pink
  • Lettre 216 is a medium soft rose pink
  • Script 218 is a beige nude pink-brown

Lip swatches with the Rouge Coco Stylos alone on bare lips (no liner or other added colors, I have naturally pigmented lips so sometimes the lip shows through around the edges):

In terms of lasting power I found they lasted a lot longer than the Rouge Coco Shines, about the same amount of time as Rouge Allures or Rouge Cocos. They stay put on the lips and adhere well for a glossy finish lip product. Colors will fade or transfer with snacks or drinks, but as long as you don’t touch the lips to any food, straws or cups they stay on long. I give the formula an overwhelmingly positive thumbs up. The only downside I see is the price seems high given the amount of product in each tube, but the formula performs well, looks good, makes the lips look and feel well hydrated and healthy. Bottom line is you need at least one.
You can find the Rouge Coco Stylos for $37 each now at I also spotted them in store and online at Nordstrom but they should be arriving at all Chanel counters now.

Three shades provided courtesy of Chanel, the remaining five purchased by me.


Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Color and Le Gel Coat Longwear Top Coat – New Formulas

February 16, 2016

Chanel has reformulated all of their nail colors into a newer longer lasting formula called Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour ($28 each for 13 ml/0.4 fl oz, made in France). There are 15 shades in this new launch, there are a few from the original line that have been re-launched in Particuliere, Ballerina, Pirate, Vamp, and Rouge Noir. I haven’t yet had the chance to check out the new ones in person yet to compare the original to new shades, so I’m not sure if the new vs old colors are identical (if you have let me know!). The Chanel team sent 3 colors for me to try out along with the new Le Gel Coat Longwear Top Coat ($28 for 13 ml/0.4 fl oz), I’ve been putting these to the test for almost two weeks now. The formula is definitely a huge improvement in terms of lasting power.

The three shades I have to share are Camélia 506, Gitane 510 and Roubachka 514. These are all creams with insanely rich pigment. Camélia and Gitane are one-coat wonders, one coat offers full coverage, although I still prefer two for an ultra rich, ultra glossy, slightly cushiony look. These seem to be similar in texture compared to the more pigmented Chanel creams like Dragon. They glide on smoothly and easily. Camélia is a rich deep peony pink kind of color, it’s got a cool-toned base but has a bright undertone which adds warmth. Gitane is an electric warm red. Roubachka is definitely a two-coater, the formula in this one is almost like a pigmented jelly. It’s a deep purple color but looks almost black on the nails. It’s what I wanted Tom Ford Viper to be (which I’ve tested in store many times but found the formula just too sheer and streaky).

Above left to right is Gitane, Camelia, Roubachka and the Le Gel Coat. They’ve changed the packaging a bit this launch. The names are no longer printed on the front of the bottles. Names are now on the back for the colors. The formula remains 5-free.

Another change they’ve made is to the brush. I was a huge huge fan of the original brush. It was thin and dense which allowed for precise application. The newer brush is a bit thicker and fans out the slightest bit at the edges. Length of brush is about the same. Initially the fanning out worried me because I thought it would be harder to control and paint the nails evenly along the cuticles. I found no issue with application. At this time I still prefer the original brush – but when you have something that you fall in love with, getting used to something different can just take time. Here’s a look at the brushes for the new formula.

For comparison, here’s a look at Gitane vs Coquelicot, packaging size is identical in product amount and bottle size. Brushes are the same length, there’s just a slight difference in the shape:

Onto the swatches, all of these have 2 coats of the Le Vernis applied with one coat of the Le Gel Coat on top:

A few quick thoughts on the Le Gel Coat is that it’s amazing. When Chanel discontinued the Laque Brilliance Extreme I was heartbroken. I found the new Le Top Coat Quick Dry top coat to be decent, but nowhere near as good as the original top coat. The Le Top Coat was very thin and runny and I found I had to load up the brush to get enough product on it to apply to the nail, but often loaded up either too little or too much.

The new Le Gel Coat is a thicker glossy kind of top coat. It has a wider brush compared to the other top coats. I tested this over Essie Barefoot and Topless because no matter what kind of top coat I use on Essie, I get tipwear the very same day I apply it. I know many others like the formula, I think it’s one of the worst that I’ve tried in terms of lasting power. I figured if the new Chanel Top Coat could make Essie polish last, then it gets my approval. The Chanel Le Gel Coat made the manicure last until Day 5 with no signs of tip wear or chipping. I only took it off so I could test other colors.
The Le Gel Coat is described as, “Specially created to enhance the new nail colour, LE GEL COAT Longwear Top Coat extends the wear for up to seven days. Activated by natural light, the innovative, clear top coat bonds to LE VERNIS for flexibility, strength and unprecedented wear. The result: an ultra-glossy, gel-like look without the UV lamp.”

It did indeed make one of the manicures last very long. In addition to the Essie, I tested Chanel Camelia with the new Le Gel Coat Top Coat and saw no signs of chipping or tip wear by Day 8. It has a cushiony glossy look. The formula is on the thicker side, but still fluid enough compared to other gel top coats so it feels like it won’t dry out or thicken like other brands. I give this a thumbs up.

A look at the original, vs Le Top vs Le Gel:

First impressions are very good from my end. The new reformulation has definitely improved the lasting power of the polish although I’ve always had good experiences with the formula in general since I’ve started collecting Chanel nail polishes. The reformulation reminds me somewhat of when Dior reformulated and relaunched their polish – they changed the packaging, changed the brush, improved the formula and pigment and also launched colors primarily in the classic/safe zone to start with a couple of more edgy shades.
I haven’t had a chance to pull comparisons or look at the other shades in the new formula, with the exception of the one above with Gitane vs Coquelicot – they look identical to me with Gitane being the slightest bit warmer. Camélia is a classic deep but bright cool pink shade, it’s deeper than colors like Fracas, Rose Exhuberant or Pulsion. It has a similar vibe to April, but Camelia is a lot brighter and not muted like April. It’s bright but deep. If I were to compare the effect of Roubachka to another shade I would say it’s similar to Tom Ford Black Cherry. I am sad to see the other shades go, but to date I’ve only used up a couple polish colors and the shades I do have last a very long time (some I have are 5+ years old and the formula is still good).

You can find the new Chanel Le Vernis formula online at I’ve spotted the colors online and in store at Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus although neither of them have Rouge Noir (at least not yet).

Have you checked out the new formula yet? What do you think?
Le Vernis polishes featured above provided courtesy of Chanel for review.