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July, 2012

  1. MUG SHOT: Forget fifty, I like this shade of gray – NARS Storm Bird (swatches and comparisons)

    July 28, 2012 by pam

    When I first saw a photo of NARS’ Fall 2012 Collection, I did a double take.

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    “What the hell?! Is that Galion?”

    But no, it wasn’t Galion. It was much too light to be Galion.

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    It’s Storm Bird.

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    Check it out on model Kristen McMenamy’s thumb.

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    Yesterday, I went to Rustan’s Makati to visit the Chanel counter. But since the Chanel girl was busy doing someone’s makeup, I decided to walk around for a bit. I dropped by NARS even though I knew they didn’t have anything new yet.

    I checked out the polish on display and asked the NARS guy, “Thakoon is still the newest collection you have, right?”

    He nodded. But just as I turned to leave, the NARS girl said, “Ma’am, we already have Storm Bird.”

    Score!

    Of course I bought it. I wasn’t walking out of there without it.

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    Say hello to Storm Bird.

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    Today, I had fun swatching it.

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    NARS describes Storm Bird as “shark grey.”

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    That’s a kick-ass description.

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    I have to admit, at first I wasn’t thrilled that NARS was coming out with just a gray polish for fall. I love NARS and I was worried I wouldn’t be in love with this color because one, I have so many grays in my collection and two, despite the number of bottles I have, I haven’t been in the mood for gray in a while.

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    But, surprise, surprise, I ended up loving Storm Bird. A lot.

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    It’s a beautiful dark moody shade of gray.

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    And it has a hint of purple that makes it absolutely gorgeous.

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    The formula was lovely, super smooth and creamy.

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    Even one coat was pretty opaque. But I used two.

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    On the nails, it dries to a darker color than the bottle shows.

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    It’s a tad darker and a bit more purple than these photos show.

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    And because I know you’re curious to see how similar Storm Bird is to Galion, I pulled out my bottle to compare.

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    As you can see, Galion is darker and a lot more blue than Storm Bird.

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    I knew they weren’t dupes but I was still surprised by how different they are.

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    Not even close.

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    They’re different enough to justify owning both, yes.

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    Please don’t make me choose between the two.

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    I love them both.

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    I brought out some of my favorite grays too for more comparisons. I knew the closest shade to Storm Bird would be Stormy Weather, which Deborah Lippmann created with Narciso Rodriguez. But something stupid happened. Something really really stupid. In the middle of swatching the different grays, I realized I couldn’t open my bottle of Stormy Weather. I tried all the tricks I know – use a piece of cloth, use a band, run the bottle under tap water, tap it against a table, curse, pray – but nothing worked. So yeah, I did my comparisons without Stormy Weather.

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    But even in the bottle you can see that Stormy Weather and Storm Bird aren’t dupes either. But I promise, as soon as I get that bottle open, I’m comparing the two shades.

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    For now, here is Storm Bird with some of my favorite grays.

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    Illamasqua DWS is a lighter shade of gray. RBL Concrete Jungle is a light gray that leans blue. RBL Stormy is a dark gray but not as dark as Storm Bird. It doesn’t lean blue either. Dior Gris Montaigne is a straight-up gray and doesn’t have Storm Bird’s blue and purple tinges. Gris Montaigne is also the sheerest of the five shades – it was the only one that required three coats, the rest were opaque after two.

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    I love that I have so many different shades of gray in my collection but no dupes.

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    Thanks to NARS Storm Bird, I have fallen in love with gray polish all over again. Remember my Galion obsession last year? I think the same thing is going to happen with Storm Bird. After the comparison swatches, I did a full Storm Bird mani and I keep staring at my nails.

    No kinky CEO, no chains, no whipping – this is a shade of gray I can get on board with.

    NARS Storm Bird is now available at Rustan’s.


  2. MUG SHOT: Dior Summer Mix – Acapulco, Cosmo, Calypso and Lagoon

    July 24, 2012 by pam

    It’s been raining like a bitch in my part of the world. And the weather isn’t the only depressing thing – it feels like we’ve been hit by wave after wave of bad news.

    I am so ready for good news. And sunshine. And color! Bright colors!

    And so I thought it was the perfect time to show you these beauties.

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    Dior’s Summer Mix Collection.

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    When I first saw photos of these shades online, I knew I wanted them.

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    Four juicy jellies?

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    Yes, sign me up, please!

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    I didn’t care that Dior’s previous collection already included pinks and corals, these happy colors were too pretty to pass up.

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    I don’t think these are available locally yet but luckily, my sweet sweet friend Sheree brought these home for me from the States.

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    Acapulco, Calypso, Cosmo and Lagoon.

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    These four shades were released with four lip colors as well.

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    I couldn’t wait to swatch these.

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    I started with Acapulco.

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    I have to admit, I was a little worried. Yellows can be a pain to apply.

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    But not Acapulco.

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    I was impressed by the formula. Super smooth, shiny, self-leveling, fast-drying and very glossy.

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    I experienced zero streaking. I used three coats.

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    Dior describes Acapulco as “acid yellow.”

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    Sadly, because I couldn’t swatch outdoors (there was no sun!), my photos of Acapulco aren’t accurate. This color is warmer and more of an egg yolk yellow than my photos show. I took a couple of shots with flash to show you.

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    I love that Acapulco is such a happy, wearable yellow. I’m so excited to wear it.

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    Up next is Cosmo.

    Two coats could have worked.

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    But I went for three for more intense color.

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    I didn’t think I’d be crazy about this color – after all, it’s another pink in a sea of pinks.

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    But I really really love it.

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    Dior describes this as “cranberry pink.”

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    But to me it looks more like an intense bubble gum pink.

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    Fantastic formula.

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    Crazy squishy jelly love.

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    This is Calypso.

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    Yes, it’s crazy squishy and pretty too.

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    Calypso is described as “pomegranate red”.

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    It’s a punchy coral red that I adore.

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    Like the other colors in this collection, the formula was fantastic.

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    Two coats could have worked but since I’m stubborn, I went for three.

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    Love.

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    I am sad that we’ve reached the last color. I wish I had more to show you.

    This is Lagoon.

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    Lagoon is kind of the odd one out in this collection.

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    Of the four, it’s the most subdued color.

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    Dior describes it as “curacao blue.” I see a hint of dustiness in it that gives it an edge.

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    And unlike the other three, this isn’t a straight up jelly – it’s a creme-jelly hybrid.

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    It’s also not as glossy as the other shades in this collection.

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    But it’s still pretty. And the formula was fantastic – perfect and problem-free.

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    I used two coats.

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    I loved this collection even more than I thought I would. I only have one complaint – I wish there were more colors. I wouldn’t have minded seeing a beautiful squishy green from Dior.

    I can’t wait to play with these and create some crazy jelly sandwiches.