Saturday, August 30, 2014

Preview - My Pick of Tom Ford Beauty Fall 2014

As you're reading this post, Tom Ford Beauty Fall 2014 is already sold out online, especially the eyecolor quad Nude Dip. This light-speed disappearance of Mr. Ford's limited editions happens every season but this fall it's ridiculously fast. So call around the counters and grab them immediately before they're gone. My recommendation is the entire collection, which isn't helpful I guess. If you're warm toned like me then Stroke contouring duo and Twist of Fate lipstick are must-haves. Nude Dip works for everyone and offers superb quality. If you lean more cool-toned, then Softcore will look beautiful on you. 

I'm still playing around with the purchased items. Here are a few thoughts

Nude Dip eyecolor quad is stunning. Although it's a neutral quad and quite dupable color-wise, the texture and finishes are unmatched. It has peach, champagne, taupe, and cool bronze theme that will flatter all skin tones. Tom Ford shimmer is wearable and sophisticated. Still, Nude Dip is all the heavier shimmer side so you need to at least like to have some sheen for your eyes. I prefer to use it dry for less intensity of the frost finish but the wet look is really sexy. It weights noticeably less than a permanent quad (0.21 oz/6 g vs. 0.35 oz/10 g). I still think it's worth $79. Highly-recommended!

The most intriguing item to me, however, are the two contouring cheek duos. Given how much I love Tom Ford blushes, it's no surprise that I must jump into any new powder products. Stroked is warmer and Softcore is cooler and more berry in both highlighting and contouring shades. I skipped Softcore due to the highlighter that can easily look ashy if I'm not careful. The contouring shade in Softcore palette however is gorgeous. I'm debating whether to get it just for that.

 The contouring cheek duo is housed in the similar case as the Shade and Illuminate, yet it offers more product ( 0.7 oz/ 20 g vs. 0.49 oz/14 g). Each shade also has more product than a blush (0.7 oz/20 g for 2 shades vs. 0.28 oz/8 g of blush). I have doubled checked and neither Stroked nor Softcore is similar to any blushes ever offered by Tom Ford. So no worries on the duplicate and more reason to splurge on these lovely duos.

Finally, Twist of Fate was a pleasant surprise. We have to gush no more about the formula of Tom Ford lipsticks. I LOVE this muted and somehow bright coral on my lips. It's deeper and has more brown than Burberry Devon Sunset but belongs to the same coral family. It's beautiful!!

Have you picked up Tom Ford Beauty Fall 2014? Any favorites? Or you have the super power to resist it then share your secrets here with us.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Swatch and Review: Tom Ford Blushes Love Lust, Frantic Pink, Flush, Savage, Ravish, Wicked, Narcissist

(Click to enlarge) Tom Ford blushes side by side 

I fell in love with Tom Ford Beauty so quickly staring with his Cognac Sable eyeshadow quad and Shade and Illuminate duo Intensity 2. But not until I dusted Narcissist on my cheeks has my love for the brand completely established. Permanently. Then I of course went back to the counter for more blushes, more eyeshadows, lipsticks, primer, foundation stick, brow pencil and most recently his insanely good brushes.

If you want to just own a single Tom Ford item, grab a blush. I finally managed to get all of Tom Ford current blushes and swatched them here for you. How beautiful, edgy, sensual, opulent, extravagant, impeccable they are! They deliver phenomenal quality and are surprisingly wearable! If you want to read my detailed review of each shade, please choose below 

Close-up under direct sunlight


Neutral Lighting

Direct sunlight

Cool lighting
  • 01 Love Lust -  a golden brown peach and cool pink shimmer that has high shine on the skin. It can be used as a highlighter. 
  • 02 Frantic Pink - a soft peachy pink with golden shimmer. It's gorgeous layering over Edward Bess Compact Rouge Love Affair or Chanel Cream Blush Affinite
  • 03 Flush - a vibrant peachy coral and coral shimmer. It's my favorite pick-me-up blush after a long night or the sun doesn't shine as brightly. 
  • 04 Savage - an opulent red brown and cool pink shimmer. It's stunning for contouring or as a bronzer, but remember to use a light hand. 
  • 05 Ravish - a pinky brown and cool pink shimmer, and probably the most versatile shade of the bunch. If I had to pick one blush to travel with, it'd be Ravish. 
  • 06 Wicked - a cool medium pink with pink shimmer and a toned down version of Narcissist and less red. 
  • 07 Narcissist - a vibrant red pink with blue undertone and tiny pink shimmer and the least shimmery shade of the bunch. This is where my love for Tom Ford blushes begin. Use a very light hand and what you'll get is a healthy blushing glow as if you just came back from a walk. 

Tom Ford blushes have a velvety smooth. They melt seamlessly into the skin like the second skin. They never cake up nor look powdery. They all have ultra fine shimmer, although at different levels. You will have a sheen on your cheeks without visible sparkles. Your skin will have a ridiculously beautiful healthy glow. And hold on, it's not all. Tom Ford blushes stay put all day, even under a humid weather like Houston summer. Highly pigmented except for Frantic Pink.

I would recommend several brushes for Tom Ford blushes
  • For Narcissist, I've found a not so dense brush like MAC 168 pick up just enough color and great for blending. 
  • For Frantic Pink, Tom Ford blush brush seems to work best to pick up color if you want to use it alone. In case of layering, Studio Gear blush brush #13 or rouge brush #14 are both good options. 
  • For the rest, use a dense brush to pick up the color then dab lightly to build up the colors. Any blush brush would work for those shades really. However, I've found natural-haired brushes pick up and blends the colors better since they're highly pigmented. 
There you have it. My makeup collection heavily gear toward eyeshadows, yet I dare to own all shades of Tom Ford cheek colors. THAT's how much I love them. Do you have any favorite among those blushes? Or you swear by a different brand? Share away guys... 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Review: Tom Ford Eye Color Quad Orchid Haze

Tom Ford Eye Color Quad Orchid Haze ($78 for 0.35 oz) was the new release from Fall 2013 collection. When entering the market last year, it created quite a buzz for the exquisite color coordination and finishes (I think). However, I resisted to review it sooner as I wasn't sure if I loved it enough to mention it  finally I know how to wear this palette to suit my style!

Orchid Haze has very complex colors that I haven't found accurate words to describe. You have a shimmery neutral champagne, a shimmery taupe/mauve, a shimmery pinkish plum, and finally a beautiful matte deep plum. The whole palette radiates a warm rosy vibe, which I haven't gotten used to see myself in it. Maybe that's why Orchid Haze is my first eyeshadow palette of this color theme.

In the pans, it looks like you get three shimmering shades. In reality, however, they lean more toward pearly and frosty finishes. Don't let the shimmer/frost scare you away if you tend to wear more subdued eyeshadows. I can't stress this enough - Tom Ford is the beauty brand that execute shimmer/glitter brilliantly. You won't walk out of your house like a disco-ball. It's office-friendly.

All four shades look lovely on my warm skin tone thanks to the warm undertone. I just don't feel it. Maybe my type of colors need to be more neutral. I use Tom Ford eyeshadow brush to apply the pinky plum on my lids and that's enough pink. My eyes can look a bit irritated if I don't pay attention. I also need to apply the matte deep plum lightly or else it'll look harsh. The warm taupe also works wonderful as a lid color or a highlighter to brighten up the inner corner of my eyes. My friends and colleagues love Orchid Haze on me! Me, just OK:)  What I love about this palette is that it adds interesting rosy touch to a rather neutral and predictable colors. You know what I mean?

Swatched under direct sunlight
Like other Tom Ford eyeshadow quads I've owned so far (Golden Mink, Cognac Sable, Cocoa Mirage), Orchid Haze has velvety smooth texture and stays put for good 8 hours on top of a standard primer. All four shades are richly pigmented and very easy-to-layer. I'm happy with the quality it offers, which is the main reason I keep this palette in my stash. 

The ingredients (click to enlarge)
Bottom line. I'm pleased that Orchid Haze stays in the permanent collection although it's not my top choice of eyeshadow from the brand. The quality is super. Really it's the matter of your taste and your skin tone, you might love it or you might be indifferent like me. or you might have to play around quite a bit until you find the right approach like me. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Review: Chanel Dentelle Precieuse Illuminating Powder

Chanel Dentelle Precieuse Illuminating Powder ($80 for 0.21 oz) is a stunning highlighter that delivers a phenomenal quality. It offers luxurious packaging, exquisite lace design, a velvety smooth texture, an extremely flattering shade of beige with ultra fine multi shimmer, and that's not all. It stays on for 8 hours under humid weather like what we're having here in Houston.

Sounds awesome eh? However, Chanel Dentelle Precieuse is not a must-have. Yes, you hear me right. I found several alternatives that possess the same quality and only fail to compete with the beauty of Chanel's latest collector item. Not to mention the 80-dollar-plus-tax-plus-quite-a-few-run-around-to-locate-it price tag for just decent amount of product. I don't hate it, actually I love it. But I have better choices.

Before you Chanel Dentelle fans stone me, please hear my reasoning. The Chanel beauty comes in a pretty velvet pouch, a decent brush, and a large mirror. All is very convenient for touch up or traveling. You don't have to worry about bringing an extra mirror or brush or the case will be scratched. It's already taken care of.

The powder comes in a pretty velvet pouch. 

When you open the pouch, the brush is tucked neatly in the smaller compartment. It's actually quite a good brush. The bristles are soft and densely pack. I might use it for on the go, although I always prefer my own brushes.

Now onto the embossed dentelle. Breathtakingly beautiful and elegant isn't it? The lace details are so real that I had goose bumps taking these photos. So incredibly exquisite! You can see the thickness of the embossed lace. So Chanel!

Next to the window, under cloudy sky

Under direct sunlight

The multi shimmer reflects sunlight

Chanel Dentelle Precieuse has more to offer than just the pretty face. It's a warm peachy beige with a hint of pink infused with multi shimmer. Don't let the shimmer worry you as it's ultra fine and looks natural on the skin. From all the swatches I've seen on the internet so far, I think it works wonderful for all skin tone. The beige is delicately balanced with both peach and soft pink. For fair-skinned girls, I would recommend you use a light hand to highlight. It could well be a blush if you're really fair. On my light medium skin, it blends seamlessly into my skin color, leaving a sheen rather than a shine on the skin.

The texture of the power is silkily smooth without over powdery. It makes the blending effortless. So far so good right? I don't have any complains about the quality or the color itself. When I played around with Chanel Dentelle Precieuse at the counter, I thought of several other highlighters in my collection. So I pulled them out for comparison.

I swatched the bronzier stripes of Dior Shimmer Star Amber Diamond next to Chanel Dentelle. The colors are painfully similar. Dior Amber Diamond doesn't have as soft and smooth texture as Chanel's, yet the difference is nuance. The multi shimmer in Chanel Dentelle is a touch more visible, and may I say, sexier than Dior's. However, I can create more variations of highlighter with Dior Amber Diamond by simply swirling different color stripes together. Plus, Dior's priced roughly at $48 for 0.35 oz compared to Chanel's 0.21 oz of product at $80. Dior Amber Diamond wins, in my book. She doesn't have that stunning lace though. 

Powder: Dior Shimmer Star Amber Diamond, Chanelle Dentelle Precieuse 

I also found two other highlighters in the cream formula, Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Opal ($41 for 1.7 oz) and Edward Bess All Over Seduction Afterglow ($38 for 0.08 oz), aka my all time favorite highlighter. They have the same peachy beige color as Chanel Dentelle. However, Edward Bess' has more subtle shimmer and Becca's has shinier and more metallic finish. On my skin these two look slightly different from Chanel Dentelle but mainly due to the different shimmer levels. Edward Bess Afterglow is tiny and turns out to be more expensive than Chanel Dentelle, $99 for 0.21 oz of Edward Bess Afterglow. Becca Opal is considerably more affordable than Chanel's. 

Different lighting to show the color

So my point is, if you already own one of those highlighters, and the chance is you have something similar to them anyway, you won't need Chanel Dentelle Precieuse. It's definitely a collector item. At the same time, if you collect beautifully designed makeup items, then you need to check it out.

I'm debating whether to keep Chanel Dentelle Precieuse. The lace does make me wonder...

One last picture of this beautiful piece of art.

Have you check out Chanel Dentelle Precieuse? Anyone wants to convince me to keep it? 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Lately, I've come back


My dearest readers,

The past several months of my life has been filled with ups and downs. Something at my core has changed, or grown as I'd like think. One of the consequences is that I no longer have the urge to own new beauty products. However, my passion for makeup and anything beauty hasn't changed a bit. I truly love to explore the world of beauty, learn and share this wonderful experience with you guys, my readers. The Convenient Beauty lives on. I'll leave

Thank you so much for your support. We've never met in person yet quite a few of you personally emailed me to make sure things were OK. It means so much to me.

I'm alright.

I'm back online.


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