Tuesday, January 16, 2018

LANEIGE Two Tone Matte Lip Bars


LANEIGE's popular Two Tone Lip Bars are now available in a matte formulation!

I'm a fan of both the original satin/creme formula, as well as the more balmy and glossy Tint formula, because both boast intensely vibrant colors in a fun format for creating ombre lips. But I'm obviously excited about the launch of a matte series since this is by far my favorite texture.


The Two Tone Matte Bars come in gorgeous pink matte-chrome tubes but the lipsticks themselves have the same slanted cut as the original Two Tone Lip Bars.

Shade Obsession: MAC Viva Glam Sia


I decided to put on my tube of MAC Viva Glam Sia one morning and straight out of the tube, this matte scarlet looks VERY much like a creamier Ruby Woo, although it's a regular Matte, not a Retro Matte. It's also just a hair warmer than Ruby Woo, which has a hint of cool undertones although I still consider mostly a true red. The undertone difference may not be noticeable to a lot of people.

The difference comes when you press your lips together and wear it out in the daytime. The warmth in the undertone comes out more in daylight, and you may - like me - suddenly notice all those tiny little flecks of gold hidden in the matte red formula.


The sparkles are not really noticeable to someone standing in front of you, unless they come really close and squint. But it does give the formula a tiny hint of luminosity, the way velvet sometimes catches the light at certain angles.

L'Oreal x Balmain Color Riche Lip Collection


L'Oreal Paris has launched the very edgy special-edition Balmain Color Riche Lip Collection, available first on Zalora.sg. The collection of 12 matte couture shades was designed by Olivier Rousteing, themed to embody the 3 facets of the Balmain woman (or man): Glamazone, Rock, and Couture.

These lipsticks are available in singles at S$28 or in themed sets of 4 at $99.

The Rock series features blue marbled tubes trimmed in gold, and the colors are muted Winter tones. Perhaps the most outstanding shade here is the royal blue, 901 Rebellion, which is exactly the color of the outer tube.


Like many other blue lipsticks, the color will go on more translucent and not as dark as it looks in the tube, but I'm happy to report that it wears quite evenly on the lips, and is actually a touch more wearable than you might think!

L'Oreal x Balmain 901 Rebellion lip swatch

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

LUSH Gorilla Perfumes - My Obsession and Collection


Gorilla scents (a play on the phrase "Guerrilla warfare") were borne of Lush's rebellion against the stale, formulaic fragrance industry where consumers are fed copycat after copycat of uninspiring synthetic scents, and more money and effort goes into advertising and packaging than it does formulas. 

While I have nothing against the cupcake-y synthetics and love a lot of them, I do consider natural perfumery an art form because of how much more complicated and expensive it is working with natural essences and extracts. Like fine wine, there are differences between batches due to variances in the harvest. And like fine wine, many perfumes that contain natural extracts "age" and develop into richer, smoother versions of themselves with time.

My on-off love affair with Gorilla perfumes began maybe around 2012 during a trip to NYC. I still recall the rather uninspiring perfume display with a somewhat random selection of identical, anonymous little black bottles and tubes with alarmingly high price-tags. But the moment I picked up that tester bottle of Lust and sprayed, I swooned, and fell instantly, passionately in love with the radiant, candy-sweet, gloriously-rich jasmine scent that you can never find with mainstream perfumes created using synthetic notes. 

Lush Lust in the new spray bottle (center) vs original Gorilla bottle and stick
I skipped a few "generations" of Gorilla perfumes and only recently rekindled my love affair after looking into the Volume IV scents. Today's perfumes come in nice squared apothecary bottles with clean white labels. Unlike the old black bottles, I can see how much perfume I have left, and what I'm actually picking up. (Plus, I love how the glass bottles look all lined up together.)

Besides 30ml and 100ml bottles, they are also available in Solid perfume pots and innovative soapy Wash Cards. I personally find the biodegradable fruit pulp Wash Cards a fun way to sample (or share) new scents in the shower. However at $5 per card, they are rather expensive and I don't find the scent stays or projects on the skin. Eco-friendly yes, eco-nomical no.