Paris was a great chance to test a few products and Maybelline Stiletto Ultimate Precision liquid eyeliner, $7.50, was a fab find.
After lounging too long over coffee and pain au chocolat, I’d often be in a hurry to get ready and Stiletto was quick to apply. The thin felt tip is easy to control so you can create a soft feathery line or a thick dramatic band. The color is sheer, soft and stays put, without flakes or smears, even after a busy day of exploring the city.
Alas, the stilettos shown in this picture didn’t fare as well. Flats were my shoe of choice and the heels stayed parked outside my suitcase.
Product Source: I received a review sample from Maybelline. I did not receive compensation.
Lip color – stick, stain or gloss – is my weakness. Maybe because it’s the first cosmetic I ever dabbled with and I remember watching my Mom applying her lipstick, then passing me the tube to try a little. Or maybe finding the perfect red, rose or raisin conjures other, more recent, memories, a tad more racy. Even when money is tight, it’s usually still possible to treat yourself to a brand-new tube. Herewith is my current list of favorites.
Chanelnever disappoints. When I choose my old standby Rouge Allure lipstick in Passion, $30, from a masterful range of reds, I’ve had strangers stop me and ask me what lipstick I’m wearing. The idea of trying Rouge Allure liquid luminous satin lip lacquer, $32, gave me shivers of anticipation. Perhaps it’s the vaguely old-school name – lacquer just sounds so 1947, so silk stocking and cold cream-esque. And then there’s the fun of telling Boyfriend Du Jour that “it’s not lipstick, silly, it’s lacquer.” Or perhaps it would be: “It’s not lipstick, silly, it’s liquid luminous satin lip lacquer.”
At the Beverly Hills Saks counter on a recent Saturday morning, my eye was immediately drawn to No. 78. “That’s the color I want,” I told the woman helping me, a far cry from my usual dithering and debating and drawing countless stripes on the back of my hand. Indeed it is a perfect creamy soft rose, bright but light and luxurious. And lacquer, which I’d thought would be more like a stain, turned out to be a cross between a stick and a gloss. Afterward, as I window-shopped my way along Rodeo Drive, a tall, gray-haired guy stopped me and asked for my phone number. I took his instead. 😉
Much as I enjoy shopping on a Saturday, it’s almost more fun to leave work early, head to your nearest department store and buy a pretty lipstick on a weekday afternoon. To lose yourself in those vast, fragrant, shimmery aisles, packed with possibility, is akin to sipping a fluteful of Veuve Clicquotjust for the joy of it. Even if you don’t buy anything, there are always free samples to score.
Oh who am I kidding? Me not buy a little product? Splurging is my special skill. Hence my acquisition of Rouge deGuerlainjewel lipstick compact, $46. Holding this drop-dead gorgeous tube – sleek, shiny, chunky – and springing open the mirror is a singular frisson and sure-fire conversation starter. It is without question the coolest compact I’ve ever seen. Smooth and silky, Guerlain lipstick glides on effortlessly every time you apply (I chose No. 65) and gives your lips a subtle but very sexy vibe.
Also combining pretty and practical is YSL Rouge Volupte, $34. The charming gold tube is topped with a handy mirror so a touchup couldn’t be easier. I bought mine a while ago and I got a really nice four-color sample set that even included a brush. YSL offers wonderful colors, feels great on your lips and the color is long lasting. No. 1 is a versatile pink/beige that can be brightened or bolded as you desire.
I also adore Laura Mercier’s lip glace, $22, in Plum Noir. What’s nice about this au courant shade is that you can blend a smidgen into a lighter color (such as the above-mentioned YSL) and you’ll get a gorgeous daytime look – sheer and shiny with just a hint of iridescence. And if you want to amp it up, just add another layer of gloss for a full-on plumintense pout. It’s almost like having two shades in one and it’s never overly thick or cloying the way some glosses can be.
Lest you think I plump exclusively for lip color with a double-digit price tag, let me assure you I spend plenty of time in drug-store aisles, less shimmery and fragrant perhaps, but chock full of irresistible bargains and endless opportunities. More