NARS is always on their A-game when it comes to blush and bronzer. Their iconic powder shades like Orgasm and Laguna are virtually must-haves for beauty gurus. Their newest formula features adored shades in a liquid form. I couldn’t resist throwing one in my cart because I love that more natural, “lit within” glow that comes with gel or liquid colors.
NARS Liquid Blush is billed as high-pigment but I actually find the finish very wearable and neutral. It comes off as a natural flush with weightless effect. Monoi and tamanu oils nourish skin adding to the natural look. It is buildable so those looking for more of a statement can achieve that, but I think the formula is best suited for that healthy, subtle glow. I use barely a half of a pump on the apple of my cheeks in Orgasm. It looks like Orgasm is not longer available at Sephora. But I actually am drawn to Luster, a sheer golden apricot, even more than the classic Orgasm. Perfect to that springtime glow!
I had a whirlwind trip to NYC this past week. Always such a pleasure to be in the city for many reasons – inspiring, great food, full of energy. But one of my favorite things about a visit to NYC is a spin through giant Sephoras full of brands I love. I was doing a late night run after dinner (that city truly never sleeps, Sephora closes at midnight), and my beauty-guru friend, Pamela, asked me to pick up of her favorites for her. Naturally, I had to have one myself.
Benefit Cosmetics Watt’s Up! Cream-to-Powder Highlighter has always tempted me as I love a luminous finish and I have a long term love affair with this Benefit bronzer. Watt’s Up is a cream to powder with a champagne finish. It is definitely “high wattage” but the sophisticated hue makes it okay for daytime or work as well. Applied on the cheeks and brow bones, it adds a luminous sheen. I also like to use it down the bridge of my nose and cupid’s bow. The sponge on the other end of the stick is great for blending but I like to use my fingers. I’ve found it works best applied above tinted moisturizer/foundation but before brush/bronzer. But I also like it alone on skin for weekend days to add just a fresh and natural glow. No wonder this is a celebrity makeup artist favorite.
I think Hourglass has established itself as a luxury brand that is here to stay at this point. And what I love about it (and attribute its success to) is the natural and luminous finishes and luxurious feel. I have tried most of their products, but what I keep coming back to is face color. Right now, I am hooked on the HOURGLASS Ambient Light Correcting Primer.
This primer can be worn under foundation or alone. Its main purpose is to blur and perfect while adding a glow. The light-correcting pigments neutralize and brighten my skin. Since I run a little red, this is perfect for me. The formula is oil-free and weightless. It soaks into my skin without looking greasy. I love the smaller sized tube for travel. And you’ll only need a pea-sized amount. I apply with my fingers. Lately, I have applied MAC Studio Face & Body Foundation on top of this primer for a very natural look. Hourglass products are 100 percent cruelty-free. Available at Sephora.
When something achieves “cult” status, it becomes hard for me to resist it. And when it is a highlighter promising to add just the right amount of glow, I just have to see for myself. On one of my rare in-person visits to Sephora last week, I picked up BECCA’s Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Highlighter in Moonstone (a pale and neutral gold).
I really like RMS Living Luminizer, but prefer BECCA because it is slightly creamier (and easier to apply) and comes with lasting staying power. It provides what best is called “shine” thanks to luminescent pearls that absorb and reflect light. The pigment is nuanced making it both dramatic and natural because it molds to undertones. The neutral Moonstone works with my redness and both over tinted moisturizer and on bare skin.
My favorite part is the creaminess. There is no caking and my drier skin soaks up the nourishment. The finish is sophisticated and healthy. Other shades include:
- Sephora exclusive Champagne Pop shade, a soft gold with sunny, peach undertones—created in collaboration with Jaclyn Hill.
- Pearl: A soft, luminescent white that’s perfect for fair skintones
- Rose Gold: A rosy pink with warm-gold undertones
- Opal: A neutral, white gold with universally flattering, soft pink undertones; adds a perfect amount of radiance
- Champagne Pop: Bestselling shade that’s a soft gold with pinky peach undertones
- Prosecco Pop: True, ethereal gold, that flatters medium to deep skintones; perfect for anyone who wants a flash of golden radiance
- Topaz: Radiant bronze with golden undertones that’s perfect for deeper skintones; adds a sunkissed, bronzy glow on fair-to-medium skintones
Available at Sephora.
While I kind of always wanted to believe in Anastasia Beverly Hills as a brow brand only, they have proved me wrong with this beauty of a palette. Lately, I am even more about the glow than usual. Maybe thanks to being exhausted from Daylight Savings Time (hate) and a rude, late winter cold (hate more).
I’ll be up front from the start: Anastasia Beverly Hills Nicole Guerriero Glow Kit highlighters are very metallic. Not glittery but highly luminous. So if you are looking for something more subtle, these might not be for you. That being said, they are still refined enough for work. And look fabulous on the weekend with some extra layers. They also make for beautiful eyeshadows.
These six flowers have an ultra-fine formula that work on the face and body. I like to use them with a powder brush, but they have a deepened effect with a damp makeup sponge. The shades are:
- Kitty Kat (pink with a platinum shimmer)
- Daydream (coral with white gold shimmer)
- Forever Young (pink pearl with silver shimmer)
- Forever Lit (platinum with lavender shimmer)
- Glo Getter (champagne with rose shimmer)
- 143 (rose gold with bronze shimmer)
The Kitty Kat looks great on brown bones and collar bones. The champagne adds a beautiful glow to cheek bones. And 143 adds a healthy glow to sallow skin with a light, all over application.
Available at Sephora.
Seems suitable that today’s little Valentine’s love note from me to you today comes directly from a favorite brand over here at Belle Belle Beauty. I always get a thrill trying new NARS products and they rarely disappoint. Always seeming to understand what our modern look needs, NARS launched Soft Matte Complete Concealer last month. Not surprisingly, it is all over the catwalks at New York Fashion Week.
The formula is natural-looking for the bare-faced look that has been in vogue for the last couple of seasons. It blurs and conceals without looking cake-y. While I usually prefer a dewy look, this finish is soft-focus almost making it more balanced than matte. It also should be noted that this isn’t a heavy concealer, but a bendable, weightless coverage.
I’ve been using this tinted moisturizer (love the way it helps with redness). After application, I use the NARS Soft Matte Complete Concealer under my eyes and around my nose for just a touch more coverage. I apply with my finger directly from the pot, just as Francios Nars intended. I find the staying power a little better than the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer. Even with my dry winter skin, nothing becomes flaky or settles into fine lines.
Available in 16 shades for all skin tones now at NARScosmetics.com and Sephora.