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· Annick Goutal Les Nuits d'Hadrien
· Updates on Annick Goutal samples
· Nars duo eyeshadow ponderings...
· Day 2 of Annick Goutal Neroli and Songes
· Premature reviews for Annick Goutal Songes and Neroli
· Side note about biotin supplement
· Aedes.com samples arrive...
· Aedes.com: seven samples for $15 rides again
· Where to buy Anthelios?
· Best shampoo without sulfates
· Dude, we're getting a Sephora!
· Update on biotin for hair loss
· Closing in on a signature lipstick
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· June 29, 2007 3:12 PM by Dain
· June 29, 2007 9:44 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 30, 2007 2:38 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 20, 2007 6:44 AM by Dain
· June 20, 2007 6:45 AM by Dain
· June 20, 2007 1:06 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 18, 2007 4:59 PM by Dain
· June 18, 2007 6:05 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 13, 2007 8:55 PM by Dain
· June 14, 2007 9:21 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 13, 2007 9:49 AM by cmm
· June 13, 2007 9:56 AM by cmm
· June 13, 2007 5:11 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 8, 2007 1:58 PM by cmm
· June 8, 2007 6:31 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 11, 2007 7:02 AM by Katherine
· June 11, 2007 7:57 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· June 3, 2007 8:36 AM by cmm
· June 3, 2007 9:49 PM by Colleen Shirazi
Recent blog posts:
The Powder Group
Dain's Literary Attempts
Colleen's Beading Blog
Colleen's Adult Acne Blog
Eponym Blog Directory.
The Lipstick Page Forums Beauty & Fashion Blog: June 2007
Annick Goutal Les Nuits d'Hadrien
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Friday, June 29, 2007 2:25 AM (Eastern)
I tried this out again today. On me, it's a bit gorgeous, but surprisingly faint, compared to the original Eau d'Hadrien.
Perhaps it's unfair to compare the two, but it was the spareness and lucidity of Eau d'Hadrien, the simple two notes of lemon and cypress, citrus and herb, that was pure unadulterated genius.
Les Nuits... has the citrus, but the other notes in it seem to mute rather than add. Oh I doubt I'm being fair. Some perfumes need a heavier application to stand out, for example, Etro Heliotrope. At first I deemed it a weak perfume, until I got a bottle of it and started spraying.
I'll try it out again tomorrow.
Updates on Annick Goutal samples
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, June 27, 2007 10:26 PM (Eastern)
I've been slowly wending my way through my aedes.com samples of Annick Goutal.
Thus far, oddly enough, since I don't think of myself as attracted to "powdery" scents, it is Heure Exquise which stands out. It has an eternal quality. Powdery fragrances can so easily smell, well, cheap, or generic, which is worse than cheap...Heure Exquise emerges because it has sufficient individuality.
Neroli is still in the running; I've worn it several times. Here it would depend on how you feel about citrus scents; it's almost as citrus as it is floral. Songes remains on my first-pass list as well.
I've briefly tried (or retried, rather) Gardenia Passion and Nuits d'Hadrien. Gardenia Passion is easily the best, most authentic gardenia perfume I've tried. You'd have to be nuts about gardenias however; it is what it says it is, just gardenia. Nuits...I'll need to try some more before commenting.
Rose Absolue...I've decided against, for purely personal reasons; I'm not a rose gal after all. That would explain why I've gravitated toward many a rose perfume over the years, from Evelyn by Crabtree & Evelyn, to Stella by Stella McCartney, to Rose Absolue itself--it's a rich, classical rose; deep red, many-petaled and velvet--rather than a light, modern, tinny rose--but never bought one.
Passion is what I'm wearing today. I can't decide whether I like it or not. It honestly smells like something I smelled in the 1970's, but I can't put my finger on it. It's not unpleasant. Just...eh...not me.
images courtesy annickgoutal.nl
Nars duo eyeshadow ponderings...
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Tuesday, June 19, 2007 5:59 PM (Eastern)
Okay. So we're finally getting a Sephora. By that I mean half an hour's drive, not driving into the City (where parking is atrocious-to-nonexistent), and so forth.
Meaning, I'll likely wait until the Sephora opens to buy anything new, because I have a couple of Urban Decay 24/7 eyepencils, a Nars lipstick (which I want to see before buying) and maybe a Nars duo eyeshadow on my wish list.
Why Nars? I have tried Dior and Lancome eyeshadows. They're both wonderful, Dior in particular, no doubt about it. But they tend more toward conventional colors, at least compared to Nars. I need more unconventional (however subtly so) shades.
swatches courtesy beauty.com
Beauty.com has reasonably accurate color swatches, better imo than the Nars site itself, but not the full array:
swatches courtesy www.narscosmetics.com
I have seen some of them "on," so at least have some idea which ones not to buy. But right now, it's an open book. I own Babylon, Ireland and Island Fever (and still love them all...interestingly, the quality of them has not changed over three years).
So, any thoughts?
Bueller?... Bueller?... Bueller?
Day 2 of Annick Goutal Neroli and Songes
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 2:57 PM (Eastern)
Today I'm layering these two scents. By this I don't mean I apply one over the other, but rather I apply one higher up on my body and the other one lower down.
The rationale is that some perfumes have sillage, or scent you can smell from farther away, while others have less of this quality. I place the sillage-laden fragrance farther down--backs of knees, lower thighs--so the stronger scent wafts up, without becoming overwhelming. The quieter scent is placed higher up--décolletage, stomach, wrist, behind ears...whatever your preferences.
Hence I have Songes as my "lower" scent and Neroli as the "higher" one.
With all this preamble, I smell the orange blossoms in Neroli much more clearly today than yesterday. Now it smells quite distinct from Eau d'Hadrien. It's almost pure orange blossoms, with a shot of actual orange fruit, like a sliced orange on a plate next to a flowering orange tree.
Songes...I can hardly smell now that it's farther away from my nose. When I had a tiny drop of it on my wrist yesterday, I smelled it for hours. Of course this is all dabbling from a sample vial; spraying it on would produce more definitive results.
I had intended to try a different scent today altogether, but couldn't resist the combination of these two.
Premature reviews for Annick Goutal Songes and Neroli
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, June 18, 2007 8:52 PM (Eastern)
I tried these out today, from my samples.
Songes was surprisingly strong, heady, good sillage...I suppose it was a bit less complex than I'd expected. (Mind you this is a first impression.) A single tiny dab smelled strong for hours.
The notes from the Annick Goutal site are as follows: Frangipani, Absolute of Ylang-Ylang, Absolute of Jasmine and Absolute of Vanilla. The description from the aedes.com site came closer to what I was smelling (or perhaps a blend of both):
The top note is a glorious natural jasmine accord. It then moves through a series of scene changes, comes close to a woody-powdery core, and eventually settles into a rich, long-lasting wood-vanilla-white flowers drydown of great refinement.
I'd say the wood part faded after a while, the vanilla was in the background...what I was getting was very floral, tropical, tempered and grounded a bit by the other notes.
Conclusion: what I liked best were the strength and sillage. I like perfumes that require only a bit, and last for hours. I hate having perfumes fade quickly.
It could have been more complex, but then I already layer perfumes; doesn't bother me a bit. Thinking of this as a potential layering scent, or, ideal scent for extremely hot, humid weather, when lesser scents fade instantly.
Neroli...now this reminds me quite a bit of their Eau d'Hadrien perfume, to the point I half-wondered if the aedes.com folks had gotten my order confused. But it does smell different. Initially, you get a healthy dose of orange blossoms, indeed the scent of "young ladies fond of flowers."
After that it seemed to fade, and I wondered if this were one of those scents you had to slather on to get much scent payoff. Then...oddly...it changed again and started smelling almost exactly like the aforementioned Eau d'Hadrien.
Now...several hours later...it's smelling good, closer to pure orange blossoms. For being a "soliflore" (single flower) scent, it seems to have taken quite a journey getting to this point.
It's way too early to draw a conclusion about either scent, but so far, I like them both.
images courtesy annickgoutal.nl
Side note about biotin supplement
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 2:55 PM (Eastern)
It seems to have made my arms smoother. I had some of those little bumps on them, I don't know if it was keratosis pilaris, but they're all but gone now. Taking my regular multi-vitamin didn't do anything; I noticed the change after I'd been taking the biotin for a while.
Aedes.com samples arrive...
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 2:13 PM (Eastern)
Mmmmm. I haven't tried any yet. The package smells heavenly, like Harper Lee's description of "the ladies" in To Kill a Mockingbird (funny how cosmetically-inclined people remember stuff like that: the Tangee Natural lipstick, the Cutex Natural nail polish).
Aedes.com: seven samples for $15 rides again
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Thursday, June 14, 2007 8:55 PM (Eastern)
I'm at the end of Armani Code--which is a terrific scent btw--but I'd like to replace it with something different. There are a few scents on my short list: Annick Goutal Ce Soir Ou Jamais and Eau d'Hadrien, Etro Royal Pavillon (Shaal Nur is a good one too but seems more of a winter scent), uh...as I say, it's a short list.
Enter aedes.com. Today I ordered their sample pack...and the samples are generous; you get vials with enough to thoroughly road test your fragrance...as follows (all Annick Goutal):
Les Nuits d'Hadrien
If out of stock, please substitute:
Eau de Ciel
(You can order samples of any of the fragrances on the site; these are just the ones I wanted to try.)
Of the group, I've smelled only Gardenia Passion and Les Nuits d'Hadrien. Both smell good in their individual way--Gardenia Passion's virtue is that it smells like a bona fide gardenia, without the chemical, even harsh undertone of other gardenia perfumes.
Les Nuits d'Hadrien...well...don't remember exactly, just that it was wonderfully complex.
image courtesy aedes.com
Where to buy Anthelios?
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, June 13, 2007 4:39 PM (Eastern)
So, I am getting more serious about sunscreen this year. The sun has gotten noticeably stronger around here.
It's...a bemusing experience. Apparently it is not possible to just go to your local drugstore in Northern California and buy a sunscreen containing what is widely touted as the best sunscreen ingredient: Mexoryl. It just isn't.
I tried Longs Drugs, Walgreens and Target, before accepting that this substance just might be slightly more difficult to procure than cocaine. Here is a thread from the forums, on the first etailers that showed when searching Anthelios.
I will post here what I decide to buy and from whom.
Best shampoo without sulfates
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 1:56 AM (Eastern)
I managed to do a spot of shopping today. Bought two shampoos...which, for a shampoo ho, amounts to a whole hill of shampoo.
Both were repurchases, actually (again, highly unusual for said shampoo ho): Alba Hawaiian Hair Washes, Plumeria and Honeydew, one of each.
images courtesy www.albabotanica.com
I've used other sulfate-free shampoos...Avalon Organics Lemon clarifying shampoo and Queen Helene Mint Julep shampoo (waves to Carol) are good. Kiss My Face Whenever shampoo was okay but I don't think I would repurchase. Jason Vitamin E shampoo smelled great, but ultimately I didn't like it...it made my hair color look funny, I suppose it left a residue of some sort on it. (These are all reviewed in the Shampoo category of our Online Beauty Reviews site btw.)
Of all I've tried, few have I ever repurchased. The Alba Hawaiian ones are genuinely worthy, as follows:
All in all a pleasure to use. I can't wait to wash my hair tomorrow!
Dude, we're getting a Sephora!
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Tuesday, June 12, 2007 7:20 PM (Eastern)
Thanks for the good news, fashion_fascist. :)
Yay! The closest Sephora around here is in the City; I've been there exactly once. Now I won't have to make a pilgrimage to check out, oh, Nars, Urban Decay, a few other brands from civilization...
Update on biotin for hair loss
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Thursday, June 07, 2007 9:17 PM (Eastern)
It's been about nine months since I started taking a biotin supplement for my (lifelong) thin hair: The LPF Beauty Blog biotin page
There is a definite difference. I don't have gobs of hair, but I feel my hair is noticeably thicker, in the sense that I don't feel that self-conscious about it anymore.
I went back and tried to find something in the way of "before and after" pictures, here goes:
I realize it's not a perfect comparison, since I don't have a recent photo with my hair worn the same way as before, and I'm too lazy to take one now--I've had my hair up all day since I washed it, so it would look funny. But I will take a good picture at the one-year mark...in fact remind me, I'll take the one-year picture at the same location too (I took the pic on the left by putting the camera inside a microwave oven).
Closing in on a signature lipstick
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 3:59 PM (Eastern)
Oh well, I've already decided to lose my Nars lipstick virginity. Now, which one?
I'm thinking sheers. Yes, sheer has become a dirty word, when it is used to mean "next to no pigment in product"--and I have no desire to select a "why bother?" lippy...yet, I've never read a gripe that Nars sheer lipsticks lack pigment.
Internet photographs of women wearing Nars lipstick are in ridiculously short supply btw. I can buy it that they cost more than some other lipsticks, but these days, they don't cost that much more. I'd sooner pay Nars prices for one lipstick that works and gets used all the way down, than pay more for two other lipsticks that end up getting tossed after a few uses.
Dolce Vita? Not likely...I'm sure it's a great shade. But after some experimentation, I've become convinced that "my" lipstick (other than Chanel Moiré, which I'm not worried about now) has got to be a little bit bright. It should not be too neutral, too natural, really.
Hindu? Check this out: SM Memo: Nars "Hindu" is Very Brown. Nice pic. Too brown for what I'm after.
Gipsy? Doesn't everyone own Gipsy, if they own a Nars lipstick? Or Flair? They both look pretty, that's for sure.
Sexual Healing, Barbarella, Belle de Jour and Viva Las Vegas are all quite light, from what I've seen Net-wise. Light lipsticks are good if you use a certain amount of eye makeup, otherwise you get the dead fish look. Hum.
That narrows it down a bit. Not really; I think you do have to see the lippies in person, swatch 'em, get a feel for what you're getting.
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Saturday, June 02, 2007 1:23 PM (Eastern)
As my cosmetics stash gently ages (see previous Rambles...), I feel I should rethink what it means to have a stash to begin with.
I've never been much of a "collector" in the sense that owning a lot of makeup, for the sake of owning it, has never appealed to me. By this I do not mean that owning a lot of makeup is bad. It can be very good, as long as you find a purpose for it. If I had use for two hundred lipsticks, I would own two hundred lipsticks. And I would love each one.
But two hundred lipsticks is not "me." One or two lipsticks is becoming, more and more so, "me." That could be seen as next to insane in this era of thousands upon thousands of lipsticks, but, again, a stash is personal, and must be customized to the customer.
So far a close candidate for the One or Two Lippy Policy is Chanel Moiré.
It looks nothing like that little swatch btw. Moiré is a luscious blend of many colors, starting with a warm, brick red base, laced with plum, rose, a bit o' brown, a twist of fuchsia shimmer, altogether Your Lips But Better, but not as bland as some YLBB shades tend to be.
Why Moiré, well it's the only Hydrabase I've tried. I would probably investigate the other Hydrabases before plunking down anything.
Nars. Which Nars? I have no clue. Unlike MAC, Nars is a brand not incessantly photographed. The price of Nars is comparable to Chanel's, so again I would investigate before buying.
Those are my two candidates, when my MAC Strawberry Blonde lipstick gets used up. I'm leaning more toward Nars than Chanel, if only because Nars lipstick is the "evil I never tried before."
Now, eyepencils...what I have: MAC Powerpoints in Permaplum, Grey Utility, Bordeauxline. MAC Eye Kohl in Heirloom. Prestige waterproof automatic pencil in Expresso.
Expresso is genuinely getting old, I've tried wiping a few layers off with a tissue; it's still difficult to get a good thin line out of it, or blend the line I do get. It's a good brand...easily the best drugstore eyepencil. But I'd like something more special in terms of color.
Enter Urban Decay 24/7 eyepencil in Bourbon.
Bourbon would appear to be a brown pencil swirled with gold, perhaps a bit of red; all that good stuff. I'd have to swatch it, but basically I'm looking for a brown eyepencil that would go with all the eyeshadows that brown eyepencils go with, but be special enough to be worn on its own.
I'm not in a hurry to replace my MAC eyepencils as the quality seems to be holding out, but if Bourbon works out, I might look at the purple 24/7's.
Blush...more than happy with Nars the Multiple in Malibu.
"Pinkish brown"...eh...does not do it justice. Malibu is a bit warm, a bit bronzy, essentially a deep rose color. It functions as part blush, with an element of a bronzer. You can use it as eyeshadow or lipstick...I don't, since I have better eyeshadows, and as a lipstick, it's too dry. As a blush, it transforms. Can't ask for more, there.
Eyeshadow. Now here I must echo Dain. You've got to replenish your Nars duo eyeshadows periodically. They do pay for themselves; the duos I acquired three years ago are still going strong, still look perfect, still...inspire.
Habanera is the "obvious" choice, if only because it's different. Not "different unwearable," from what I can glean (never seen it in person), but "I can create something amazing" different, "how did she do it?" different. But I'll probably end up getting something else. Forget it, Jake. It's Nars.
Okay so that's it for color cosmetics for me. I don't wear mascara, don't wear eyebrow products, don't do gloss or lipliner (shhhhh...). For that matter I don't do concealer, have no interest in full coverage foundation, have never actually worn liquid eyeliner. I need a few color cosmetics to keep me entertained/make me look good when I need to look good...the products have to perform, have to elevate, otherwise why bother?