Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Review: Tom Ford Contouring Cheek Color Duos Softcore and Stroked Fall 2014

As I am typing this line, the two limited edition Contouring Cheek Color Duos Fall 2014 Softcore and Stroked ($77 for 0.7 oz) are on and off available on If you haven't had a chance to try them at the counter or are on the fence of whether to invest, I urge them to grab them both! The reason? For me: it's Tom Ford cheek product, duh! I have come to love (and collected) all Tom Ford powder blushes. The formula, the color, the texture, the wearing, worth every single penny. So these two cheek duos were what I most anticipated from his fall collection, not Nude Dip eyeshadow quad you guys. 

But if you haven't had the same experience as I've had with his blushes, I hope this review will help you to decide whether Softcore and Stroked deserve a place in your makeup collection. 

First, let's take a look at these stunning cheek duos. 

Softcore is a frosty pinkish champaign highlighter (hint of metallic finish) and a matte reddish brown. This palette leans cool on my warm skin although it's not too cool to the point I can't wear it. I need to go extra easy on the highlighter shades or else it can look ashy. 

Stroked has a shimmery golden champaign highlighter and a shimmery warm medium brown that's not as deep as the contouring shade in Softcore. It's no surprise that Stroked looks more natural on my warm skin tone than Softcore but it's neutral enough that I think it will flatter cooler skin tones as well. 

You can tell right away that these aren't typical greyish, taupe or brown that we regular makeup users think of. And I'm so glad they aren't. While the taupe color family might more like "killer cheek bones" in photos, I much prefer these reddish warm brown for everyday contouring. 

Softcore and Stroked deliver a phenomenal quality just as I expected from Tom Ford wonderful powder blushes. The highligher shades add a lovely glow to my cheeks as if my skin is that healthy even under the dreadful car lighting. Both the highlighting and contouring shades are seamlessly blendable. They don't require much blending to look natural. The texture feels so smooth like velvet. Both palettes wear well for 8-10 hours without fading. 

Some other favorites of mine: Bobbi Brown Pink Oyster shimmer brick, Dior Amber Diamond, Tom Ford Ravish blush, the Balm Mary Lou Manizer, Dior Rose Diamond

The highlighter shades compared to some highlighters

The closet to Stroked highlighter shade in my collection is Dior Amber Diamond. The Balm Mary Lou Manizer has more beige than Stroked. Bobbi Brown Pink Oyster is quite similar to Softcore. But all in all, I love the texture and the blendability of Tom Ford's duos the best. I also think they give me a more believable glow than the rest. 

The contouring shades compared to Tom Ford Ravish blush

Contouring cheeks aren't either my type or my strong suit. These duos make contouring very easy.
They help me sculpt my face effortlessly for everyday and natural looks. The key is to use a very light hand because these babies are richly pigmented. For those of you who have deeper skin tones or you prefer strong dramatic sculpted face, you won't be disappointed either. I would recommend you use lighter hand to contour your temples and hair light still.

Nude Dip on the eyes, Softcore on the cheeks, Twist of Fate on the lips

Now let's talk the price. Tom Ford contouring cheek color duos are priced at hefty $77 for 0.7 oz/20 g of product. That's a lot compared to other designer brands, and to Tom Ford itself. Tom Ford Shade and Illuminate (cream formula) offer 0.49 oz/14 g of products at $77 while his blushes are $57 for 0.28 oz/8 g of powder. These duos, I tell you, will last a long long time given how pigmented they are and the amount of product they offer. 

Bottom line: Pure love! Softcore and Stroked should be a part of permanent range. 

Have you cheek our Softcore and Stroked? How do you like them? What brushes are you using to apply them? 

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