Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Review/Swatches: FACE atelier Façade, the new wonder product

Lazy girls like me like multi-use products; I'm the type of girl who will buy a 3-in-1 of anything to make life easier. FACE atelier pretty much just launched one of those products recently and I managed to get my scrabbling (and extremely lucky!) little hands on some samples to test out. I've kind of been smugging my way around Twitter about these and cooing about them without actually delivering any goods.

Because I'm given to preamble, I'm going to stop myself there. Sometimes there just isn't enough room to tell you the story, various hijinx or completely unrelated trivialities that make me seem like I'm interrupting myself (even though I am).

FACE atelier Façade is... on the face of it, a lip and cheek stain, but to say that makes it sound boring and like a generic product. It simply doesn't compare with other lip/cheek stains I've tried on the market (oh BeneTint! Are you back there again trying to grovel for another chance?), because the texture, feel and way it blends are something completely new and unique to me (and also completely divine and amazing, but we're getting to that).

From the top, clockwise: Cha Cha, Godiva, Livid, Chameleon and Arabesque.

Façade is a silicone-based lip and cheek stain with a gel-like texture which sets as powder. It's incredibly silky and light and gives a translucent and matte wash of colour which builds effortlessly.

... Of the review, that is. I was actually going to call this 'I can't believe it's not butter!' but I saved that for here. Just because it's just a tiny bit too stupid. On application, this product is a dream. It's this velvety, smooth Vaseline kind of texture without the grease. It has this buttery feel that just melts into the skin and lips and almost slips over the skin.

The silicone formula gives it a longer drying time, affording plenty of time to blend the formula over the cheeks and basically ensuring that the product is as fool-proof as possible. It deposits a sheer wash of matte colour over the cheeks and lips and is endlessly buildable - and you really don't need much to give yourself a healthy flush.

On the lips I get around 3-4 hours wear of these, but they don't dry my lips out due to the silicone in the formula allowing it to almost 'float' over the skin instead of sinking into fine lines. On the cheeks I get all-day wear from these, a perfect, delicate, diaphanous flush with just a little product. They are moisture and sebum resistant and blend perfectly over even powder products - I wore it over a mineral foundation and it blended no differently.

One of the coolest things about this product is the ability to mix it up to get your ideal colour. I've grown quite fond of mixing Cha Cha and Livid for a sunblushed red, or Chameleon and Livid for a more Snow White kind of pinkish red.

Speaking of colour, I'd better show you what all five of the colours look like:

Arabesque: I'd describe it as a neutral-brownish peach with a hint of pink on my skin tone. It reminds me of MAC's See Sheer lipstick.

Cha Cha: A warm peach. One of my least favourites as I felt like it imparted the least amount of colour to my lips and seemed to pill/gunk up a little more, but it still did give me a beautiful almost 'caught-the-sun' flush to my cheeks.

Chameleon: A blue/cool-toned pink. This one is my absolute favourite.

Godiva: FACE atelier describe this as 'cherries dipped in chocolate'. So accurate. On my cheeks this comes out as berryish pink. So beautiful for Autumn.

Livid: A bright, cherry-ish red, absolutely stunning on the lips and works on the cheeks great too! Apparently I chewed my lip before taking this photo - sorry for the bald patch on my lip!

I love these forever, and have worn basically nothing else for the couple of weeks I've had them as they're so easy to chuck on with one eye open (that's mostly me in the mornings) and completely foolproof. The colours do look intimidating before they're blended, but rather like the NARS Multiple Tint Tubes in their array of neon-seizure colours, the FACE atelier Façade lip and cheek stains sheer down and blend out beautifully. They come packaged in a squeezy tube, so perfect for both on the go and kits too and FACE atelier sell samples of the product for $1 at their website. Basically, they're damn amazing. I don't know how to end this review because I could wax enough lyrical for ten thousand candles: FACE atelier really hit it out of the park with this one.

You can buy these in the UK at Coco Beau for £22.50. Well worth it, I'd say.

*DISCLOSURE FTW: I was provided with these little samples by Coco Beau, and I'm neither affiliated with Coco Beau nor FACE atelier. I am not being financially compensated for reviewing this product and am, as always, very honest.

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Hell hath no fury like a blogger scorned: The rise and rise of Eyeko.

Eyeko is that bijoux cosmetics brand which seems snugly nestled in some kind of Anglo-Japanese rut where the brand claims to be staunchly British but with a strong kawaii aesthetic. I've never really had anything bad to say about the brand; if anything I've championed their Big Eyes Mascara and how beautifully it provides just the right amount of length and volume for my middling lashes.

That stops today.

Exhibit A:

Eyeko.com as archived by the Internet Wayback Machine, August 26, 2010 (although I bought the mascara around March this year and it was still around £8...)

Exhibit B:

Eyeko.com as archived by er... me. June 18, 2011.

You know when it's nothing personal, and it's not you, it's me and all those other platitudes you'd say when breaking up with someone? All of the above to Eyeko. Oh, and no offence.

You see, Eyeko, the makers of the beloved mascara, realised a few days ago that the blogosphere is raging about their current price hike. Even the people that don't like the mascara. Even the people who don't really care about Eyeko at all. You see, Eyeko, news travels fast and most of us aren't happy.

Eyeko were quick to respond to the rumblings of discontent on Twitter by pointing them to a blandly written post (obviously sweetly signed off with the phrase 'love Eyeko', as if expressing devotion to the 'fans' while conveniently hiding behind a brand name wasn't patronising enough). To quote Eyeko in their twee excuse-fest (which you can read in its entirety here):

Eyeko Mascara for Big Eyes launched in 2001 in top stores like Selfridges and Harrods London. At that time the price was £15. Over the years we have changed the packaging, tweaked the formulations and moving forward we are offering you a more premium product.

Let's pick it apart.
Eyeko Mascara for Big Eyes launched in 2001 in top stores like Selfridges and Harrods London.
- Great, and so what?
At that time the price was £15.
- So why was the price of the mascara dropped to £5, and then later raised to £8? My extremely limited business experience (watching The Apprentice) would see dropping the price as a negative... And anyway, just because it was £15 once doesn't mean doubling the price is appropriate after you yourselves dropped your own prices.
Over the years we have changed the packaging, tweaked the formulations and moving forward we are offering you a more premium product.
- Yes, and the latest formulation before this new launch was terrible and prompted me to stop buying your products at all.

We have read your comments on the new price of Eyeko Big Eyes Mascara. Our best-seller has been revamped and upgraded. The new price will reflect a better, reloaded formula that creates even bigger, longer and fuller eyelashes. We aren’t increasing the price, what you’ll see and experience is the NEW Eyeko Mascara for £15. You can still find the current version of Big Eyes mascara in the London Eyes Set.

We have read your comments on the new price of Eyeko Big Eyes Mascara.
- Not sure I believe you...
Our best-seller has been revamped and upgraded. The new price will reflect a better, reloaded formula that creates even bigger, longer and fuller eyelashes.
- No. Now I definitely don't believe you.
We aren’t increasing the price
- Whoopsy daisy! It appears you're tripping over your own excuses here... Let me help you up!
You can still find the current version of Big Eyes mascara in the London Eyes Set.
- How helpful! To get hold of your old mascara, I now need to buy a set worth (relatively speaking) £28 for the sake of a mascara.

The thing is (and this is the real kicker), if I'm going to pay £15 for a now likely-to-be-average mascara (which used to be good, by the way, but the price kind of sours that a bit), I'd frankly do a u-turn and head straight to the nearest YSL/Dior/Estée Lauder counter, hand over an extra fiver and get a mascara that has established the brand to go along with the price-tag.

Don't read me wrong on this post - don't see me as being overly-combative or cantankerous (although I can be, so you might be justified). What really gets me about this price hike isn't in fact the money, or the continual promises of bigger! better! MORE AWESOME! formulations, because those have never happened in the past. What did bother me is the self-apologetic blog post about it, and the patronising way we were told to be excited for the next big venture. In light of all the Ambassador programme scam drama, you'd think they would've stopped trying to make excuses by now and tell us straight what we're getting. As long as you tell me I'm receiving a sub-par product at an inflated price and I buy it - well more fool me.

Drop the shovel, Eyeko, and step away from that hole you're digging before it's too late.

What's your view?

Sunday, 12 June 2011

FOTD #7: The one where the story's more important

Have you ever seen that scene in Scrubs, where Turk attempts to sneak in from a night out, and in his attempts to not wake Carla up he straps pillows to his feet?


Allow me to educate you:

It has been a little quiet around here recently, and here I am, attempting to sneak quietly back in, but I've been caught with one leg halfway through an open window, or tripping over the vacuum cleaner with high heels in hand while groping my way blindly through the house. If you're wondering about the vacuum cleaner thing - it sounds like exactly something I'd do when trying to sneak into the house due to Kiwi's negligence.

We have an agreement: I hoover, and Kiwi wrestles the thing back into its Harry Potter-sized bijoux cupboard-under-the-stairs (in a flat which actually has no stairs, but that is its name nonetheless, because what else do you call it?). So anyway - I probably would trip over the hoover, and last week, I went headlong over the iron which Kiwi had thoughtfully left for me as a dangerous gift in the middle of the floor.

...I like to think in these moments that he's only concerned for my fitness and mental alertness by doing such things.

So, anyway - a face of the day. Yesterday we went to Birmingham to see a man (Kiwi's cousin) about a car... Which is now ours. YAY. On the way home, the CD player broke. I bought 3 Glamour magazines and helpfully redistributed them (sans freebies) among passengers of the 12:03 train to Birmingham New Street. And then we celebrated having a new car by driving to the supermarket like the excited boring adults that we are, and we bought heavy things we'd never normally be able to carry the 20 minute walk home.

But - about the makeup. I rediscovered a little item long ago purchased, a Superslick liquid eyeliner by MAC in Marked for Glamour, a beautiful mid-grey with a soft pearly sheen. And well - I bought it, and rarely wore it. I love grey, because it's not black. It allows for this beautiful softness, but still with the definition and coquettish flicks I'm addicted to. Blush wasn't a hard one: pink and matte, maybe a slight sheen, but I veered away from my usual suspect in favour of another product I rarely use. And then for the lips? A new product I happened to have a sample of, a teeny-tiny sneak peek of something very special: FACE atelier Façade lip and cheek stain. It's a velvety siliconey smoothy dreamy thing to apply and lasts amazingly and and and... I want to tell you everything I love about it (having owned the sample pot precisely 4 days) but that's for another day.

I hate these pictures, but I had a story to tell today.

Now Playing: something ridiculously hip, indie and cool...

Posing live from the train to London Bridge.

Products used:

- Estée Lauder Double Wear Foundation
- MAC Pro Longwear Concealer
- Kryolan Anti-Shine Powder
- MAC Briar Rose Beauty Powder

- MAC Paintpot in Painterly
- MAC Superslick liquid liner in Marked for Glamour
- Bourjois Volume Glamour Ultra Black Mascara

- FACE atelier Façade in Chameleon (available at Coco Beau).


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