I did this look one day, and was SO happy with it I did an even more amped up version on the next day. I almost NEVER wear the same look two days in a row, so you can tell I REALLY like it. I wore this on a Friday with no comments from my colleagues… they’re probably used to me doing crazy shit on Fridays by now.
So, I’ve had this awhile now and I’ve worn it lots of times, enough to finally share my thoughts!
First off, this is definitely not something you expect to be able to get for cheap on Carousell, as it is a very niche brand. So I had to buy retail, which pains my soul. At $80 for 30ml, it is on par with other high end foundations. For reference, Armani’s Lasting Silk is $87. NARS Sheer Glow is $73, Shu Uemura Light Bulb is $75. So straddling the line between department store brands and outright luxury. Good thing that there’s a counter in Taka, so feel free to use all your Taka vouchers! 🙂
In Singapore, obviously we have a very limited access to niche fragrances. Escentials is the leading retailer of niche fragrances, like Creed, Serge Lutens, Amouge, and Atelier Cologne. They’re at Tangs Orchard and Paragon, if you wanted to smell how all these posh expensive things smell like. I went there today for an expedition. Although I spritzed lots and lots of scents, the below are the only 2 I tried on my skin and kept sniffing throughout the day.
Update! With better pictures 😛 You can still read the review and the old pictures below.
Here is bare face. I have really been struggling with chin acne lately, I suspect from a combination of hormonal acne, reaction to something (possibly the Bourjois foundation???) and consuming far more milk in the past few weeks than usual, since I’ve been off milk for years and years. All the better to test foundation with, I guess! Hopefully it clears up after Shark Week is over :B
Click to enlarge!
Do you notice the soft focus effect? It’s as if I added a filter, but I swear I didn’t. It still looks a little bit chalky upon first application, and it’s still just a leetle too pale for me, but it makes my skin look gorgeous!
Here’s a closeup. Notice the beautiful satin finish on my cheeks. I love it, it makes me look healthy and slightly glowy without being dewy or matte. Perfect in between. It’s a touch dry – I’ve been having problems hydrating my skin lately too x( You can see the coverage is around a medium. I used about a full pump – more than I usually use, but you can wear 2 layers instead of 1 for more coverage. My acne is covered up a bit, but the worst spots still show through. As I mentioned before, it’s very unkind to dry and flaky spots, which is aplenty on my chin. I’M SORRY, MY SKIN IS REALLY SHITTY AND I CAN’T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT 😦 But on the rest of my skin it looks great.
Here is teh colour match after around 10 minutes. Much better, but still ever so slightly on the pale side, not so evident in pictures.
I hope the new pictures show just how fantastic this foundation and why I love it so much!
I’ve had this foundation for quite awhile (maybe 2 years?) and I love it, but I’ve never actually written a proper review on it!
Giorgio Armani Lasting Silk is, out of all the foundations that I’ve tried, my firm favourite. Karima Mckimmie of Shameless Fripperies mention that it is like photoshop in a bottle and it is so true. Every time I use it I fall a little bit more in love with it.
So, features of this foundation. It’s slightly watery and thin straight out of the bottle, but offers medium coverage. 1 pump is 1 layer and more than enough for daily use. Two layers cover up pretty much everything I need to without spot concealing to perfection. It’s very heavy on the silicones, so if you dislike silicones, then avoid this foundation at all cost. It also has a little bit of fragrance, not too offputting.
This foundation is absolutely beautiful on skin. It seriously blurs out EVERYTHING. Without a primer, I look like I have no pores. The only reason I use a primer with this is for increased longevity.
This foundation also lasts quite long and breaks down slowly and elegantly. I still use a primer because it’s Singapore and it’s super humid and everything breaks down sooner or later so we try to aim for later rather than sooner.
It has a satin to very slightly dewy finish. I might need a powder in the middle of the day to retain satin.
Look at my face in full glory. Notice the pores on my nose and cheeks. They’re not too bad but they exist. BTW I got a bit of a tan that day because the sun was BLAZING and I wasn’t wearing sunscreen for some reason, FML. Hopefully after I go back to the office next week my porcelain complexion will come back.
And DUM DUM DUM, NO MORE PORES. No moisturizer, no primer, nothing underneath. Only 1 pump and 1 layer blended with fingers (because my brush was elsewhere.) Even my undereyes are decently covered and I didn’t apply extra at that area. Your skin will look even more ridiculously photoshopped with a smoothing primer underneath. It has also never pilled for me even though I’m sure I’ve been slathering a shit ton of silicones on my face.
Note that it doesn’t make my pimple in the corner of my mouth look very attractive. Don’t use this foundation if you have lots of texture or flakes. Normal small whiteheads should be covered fine.
However, there is one major concern for me that stops me from declaring it HG:
I don’t think there’s a perfect shade for me. Currently I’m using shade 4.5, which is perhaps half a shade or a shade too pale. It’s workable, certainly, with some contour and taking it down to my neck, but I have to be a little careful. It looks rather chalky up there, but I promise the colour settles down slightly better after 15min or so.
Looking at the swatches below, 4.5 looks the most olive, while 5.5 looks a little too warm and peachy.
This sucks right? Perfect formula, no good shade match. Is there any way to make a foundation slightly more olive???
If you can stand some alcohol in foundation, and also silicones, and you can find a good shade match, I HIGHLY recommend this. It was the perfect foundation for me (and lots of other people!)
gorgeous finish, around satin level
medium coverage, can be built up
covers like ALL PORES
long lasting formula
doesn’t need a primer
Doesn’t match me THAT well, but the shade range is large so you’ll probably find a decent match
As you should know, I have a very vintage soul. Even though I don’t dress all pin-up, or even vintage all the time (I like my variety yo) I do love the vintage aesthetic. Lots and lots and lots of red lips. Pin curls (PIN CURLS!!!!) blunt bangs, polka dots and A line dresses. All the things I love 🙂
(I even do Chinese Vintage, look at the exhibit below:)
So it’s no surprise that Besame really spoke to me. The entire brand is about vintage beauty and glamour.
And RED LIPSTICK. SO MUCH RED LIPSTICK.
Besame is best known for their extensive collection of recreated historical shades of red lipstick. For example, there is 1930 Noir Red, which is a very dark, blackened red like what the flapper girls used to wear in the Pre depression era (or what I call the Great Gatsby era.) There’s 1941 Victory Red, where women were encouraged to wear red lipstick to lift the spirits. (YES, RED LIPSTICK DOES WONDERS FOR YOUR SPIRIT!) There’s also 1959 Red Hot Red, which is Marilyn Monroe’s shade.
My favourite is 1946 Red Velvet, because it is the Agent Carter lipstick shade. Behold:
Although I have to admit, I’m more comfortable with bright reds than dark reds, and Red Velvet looks a little dark to me. Idk, I’m still getting it 😀
Just in case RED EVERYDAY is not your thing (and I definitely can’t wear red everyday) there is 1969 Dusty Rose, which looks to be a wearable everyday mauve. And another I’ve been very interested for some reason is 1970 Chocolate Kiss, which I guess is the first brown lipstick I’ve been obsessed over? There’s also a small selection of glosses (described at thick but not sticky, my favourite kind!) and lipliners.
Besame also has a small selection of face products. They used to make these FREAKING GORGEOUS vintage compacts.
Which aren’t available right now, but they may make more batches in the future. HOW PRETTY IS THAT COMPACT.
They have this Vanilla brightening powder though, and I’m sold at the first word. VANILLA!!!! SCENTED POWDER! I would slather myself in vanilla everything if I could. Unfortunately I think I have enough powder to last me for the next 5 years.
Recently they released a new line of blushes, in 4 colours. My favourite is Raspberry, because PURPLE BLUSH. There isn’t any review I can find of it yet, but they look like a gorgeous flush of satin colour.
Besame also has a couple of mascaras, but I am not interested in them because my wimpy Asian lashes need hardcore Japanese mascaras. Anything less won’t do 😦
My current cart for Besame is very long:
1946 Red Velvet (for sure!)
1970 Chocolate Kiss
Raspberry Delicate Rouge
Vanilla Brightening powder
Caramel Sweetheart Glaze (because it looks semi-opaque and CARAMEL FLAVOUR GLOSS!)
Besame is not the cheapest brand out there. The pricing is on par with mid-range brands like Urban Decay, which makes me weep a little. Their lipsticks have fantastic reviews, but I’m not that sure about the rest of the products. I really love the marketing and image of Besame, and not being able to buy directly from the site is pretty frustrating. If you’re in Singapore, you can order off BeautyBay. [I have not ordered from them before, please do so at your own risk.] They only have a small selection and the Red Velvet lipstick always sells out a few days after each restock. I know because I stalk that page a lot. 😀 But the price is very fair and there is free shipping at a very low minimum.
I would still like to buy directly from the Besame website because you know, ALL MY OTHER STUFF.
By the end of the year I would have laid my hands on some Besame stuff, by hook or by crook, and I will be reviewing them 😀
Here is a better example of how NYX Milk is an amazing product, and how my buying questionable beauty items lead to… questionable beauty items.
On the left is my Chanel Lilium Quad. It’s in tester packaging, and Lilium is an extremely old LE release (Autumn 2012? Can’t remember.)
My Nymphea, on the right, is very lovely and buttery, though the colours are very translucent, sheer wash of colour that would be dissed by most Western eyeshadow wearing standards as unpigmented.
Lilium though, is a little dodgy. I know that there are fake Chanel quads around for sure, but to copy an LE, obscure quad is quite a stretch. Still, it’s far more powdery and almost gritty compared to Nymphea. I use Nymphea quite often, but I was Not Impressed when I first swatched Lilium.
Today I did a comparison, one eye using primer and Lilium and the other using primer, NYX Milk and Lilium. I theorized that the white base and tackier texture of Milk would fix the powdery issue of Lilium.
First set of swatches over primer, Second over NYX milk. See how the colour are far more vibrant? The forest green shimmer really comes out in the darkest shade, making it very jewelled.
With primer only. See how everything looks very muted? Plus, there is quite a bit of eyelid texture because I really had to slather on layers and layers of shadow to get the colour to show…..
SO much more vibrant. It took me half the time to do it with Milk than without. All shadows just needed 1 layer, all turned up much more vibrant. The shimmer looks much smoother instead of almost gritty in the previous picture.
Comparison. Your left is with Milk, Right is without. Bad photography aside, you can see the clear difference in vibrancy. Sorry about the lack of the rest of make up….
Bottom line: I have no idea if this is the same Lilium they rolled out all those years ago. If it is, then Chanel SUCKS and they can suck my balls because no one should charge more than like $5 for this shit. Thankfully its great flaws are negated by NYX Milk, a $6 neverending base for EVERYTHING.
I did a nice look with Chanel Nymphea the other day so I’d thought I’d share!
Chanel’s style in general is very soft and elegant, and Nymphea is the epitome of that. I did a very soft, pretty pastel look. It’s possible to go for a smokier look by going more heavily on the brown, but not by much.
It looks a teeny bit washed out on camera and at night, but for daytime it’s really nice! It’s my favourite palette by far.
And here’s the full face:
It’s a great palette for travel because it’s versatile, neutral yet with a twist.
I post lots of unglam pics of myself: no make up, very little make up, bad lighting, etc.
This is an quick editorial shoot by my husband (an amateur photographer) for my new business. Yes, despite how I look in my usual photos, I CAN look this good! There is 0 liquify, only colour adjustments, and very, very minor skin touchups, mainly for undereye milia. I’m not a beauty retoucher (although I’m a pretty good amateur photoshopper) so I have no idea how to paint over skin magazine like.
So yes, I AM STILL PRETTY, OKAY 🙂
If you’re curious this is another image 100% unretouched straight from the camera.
Deetz for DA LOOK which I actually absolutely love:
Start with a very well moisturized face. I find that the foundation I used really drags on skin that isn’t moisturized properly.
Foundation: Giorgio Armani Lasting Silk, 2 layers for really good coverage
Concealer: NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Honey
Brows: Life’s Entropy Brow Theory in Ebony
Cream contour: Illamasqua Cream pigment in Hollow
Powder contour: NYX Blush in Taupe (I contoured the SHIT outta my face!!!!!)
Blush: NYX Cream Blush in Natural (My neutral, goes with everything blush)
Highlighter: Mary-Lou Manizer (I needed something that looks glistening, not special effectsy, so no using all my special effects highlighters BOO)
Eyes: Giorgio Armani ETK in 8 Champagne on inner corners, Rose Gold colour from Chanel Nymphea quad in middle of lid (it’s my platonic Rose Gold – never found any like it.) the brown/taupe shade from Nymphea in the outer corners and on lower lashline, Colourpop Girl Crush in crease. (I’m so yellow that Girl Crush, which is ostensibly true grey, looks PURPLE ON ME.)
Shitloads of Maybelline Drama Pen Gel Liner black and also in the upper waterline. I filled up any gaps between lashes easily with my depotted mascara (another use for that damned mascara!)
(Okay, my definition of luxe is not all the way up there yet. That would be like, By Terry, which I think is superbly overpriced.)
Since I became a mother, I’ve been using Lanolin. The only reason you’ll know about it is if you are 1) breastfeeding and suffering from the NIPPLE PAIN and 2) heard mothers discussing it. I don’t think anyone organically needs to moisturize their nipples, srsly.
This is one that I’ve received as a gift from a girlfriend. It’s like USD$14.50 for the 15ml tube, which is not exactly cheap. However, the real steal is Lansinoh:
Which I got for ~$13 for 40g. I have used this on my nipples, my lips, my cuticles, etc, and there is barely a dent on my tube after a year. It will last you your lifetime if you didn’t have to throw it out after a few years, probably. I wouldn’t mind this in a smaller tube at a cheaper price.
Lanolin works fantastically for me. Some people MAY have lanolin allergies, so please check.
It’s very very emollient and heavy. There is definitely something on your lips, although I wouldn’t say it’s much thicker than the average lip gloss.
The product liquefies with heat (and solidifies with lack thereof). In colder temperatures it is nearly solid and impossible to get out of the tube. Minor irritation.
It keeps very well overnight
It is very, very soothing. If you have chaps/cold sores/dermatillomania (mine has been very severe recently due to a flare up of my insomnia) it will soothe all your worries.
It doesn’t really taste of much, but has a slight smell of something vaguely animalistic. Nothing too strong or offensive.
I’ve also recently bought Nuxe Reve de Miel, in a moment of uncharacteristic weakness. I am apparently really, really spendy on holidays.
This famous lip balm has many fans. It’s at a luxe price point because the French sound sooooo posh outside of France. I got this for ~$23.50 SGD for 2, because it was on a bit sale. This price is nearly the same as the french pharmacy price. (~7EUR) It is astronomically expensive elsewhere (USD19, SGD32 in Watsons)
But it is actually a beautiful lip balm. If you can get it on sale, I wholly recommend it. The cheapest I’ve found online is on Qoo10 at $20.27, with free shipping over $80. [affiliate]
It is thick, but not as thick as Lanolin. Since my lips are so picky now, I’m glad for the increase in emollience.
It smells like orange-flavoured chocolate. It’s not my favourite flavour in the world, but it sure smells yummy. It’s definitely orangey, and definitely slightly sweet.
People have said the texture is very hard. It actually isn’t, or maybe we have different standards. This is like digging into really, really rich and solid custard. I could seriously eat this, the texture and smell is sooooo yummy. Maybe my tub is less solid because I’m in a warmer place.
It’s a really great balm. It soothes my lips and after wearing it for a whole day yesterday my lips are finally happy!
It goes on very, very matte. Good under lipstick.
I’m not too fond of pots, but well, I can compromise.
There is a LOT more product than you think. That little pot is really, really deep. I didn’t realise how much there was till I dug out a lot of it to make a DIY mix of balm and still had a shitload left.
And just in case you want to make your own tinted balm/DIY mix (post coming up in the future!) the smell remains after mixing/heating/what have you – great if you like it!
So should you save or splurge on lip balm? Lip balm is a staple, and a really boring one at that, so if cheap stuff like Vaseline or lanolin works for you, by all means stay with it. I used Vaseline for really long too, until it was just not emollient for me. If you have some moolah and are looking for a nice, relatively expensive lip balm. the Nuxe Reve de Miel totally lived up to my expectations!