From MAC she had bought me the new-ish mascara, Haute and Naughty Lash, which I was raving about when I saw how great it made her lashes look. It has two wands in one, if that makes sense. I couldn't photograph them together as each wand forms a part of the other and if you try and pull both out at once you end up in a mess with a wand in one hand and a bare stick in the other. So here are the too brushes photographed separately.
|MAC Haute and Naughty Lash - lengthening wand|
|MAC Haute and Naughty Lash - volumising wand|
I've used this a few times now and I like the double wand concept, it's fun and makes the mascara chore less boring. I wouldn't use it when I'm in a hurry as it doesn't really give me 'fast' volume and length, it takes some building up to do that. The lengthening wand gives pretty fluttering eyelashes which are perfect for a natural daytime look, but I like full-on thick, long lashes all the time so for me it's not quite enough. I tried using the volumising wand separately too, but this was unsatisfactory for me. Not enough length and separation. The lengthening wand is also supposed to be the lash separating one so I can see how they work well together. Overall the effect of both used together is quite good, but on me it's not as great as on my friend, proving that mascara suitability is totally a personal thing. You'd think that lashes are just, well, lashes and that what works for one will work for all, but this really isn't the case. I do like it though and will use it up happily. It doesn't flake or smudge which is a huge bonus. Score: 7/10
Also from MAC she bought me the Summer Stash crushed pigments from the Surf Baby collection. Now these I initially wasn't that interested in but OH MY GOD, they are just divine! I'll let the swatches speak for themselves.
|MAC Summer Stash|
|All four shades of Summer Stash swatched|
|Close-up of the violet-plum and golden-champagne shades|
|Close-up of the bronze-brown and palest pink-champagne shades|
The colours don't seem to have names which is such a shame as you'll have to make do with my naff 1980's paint-chart colour descriptions. (Misty buff, anyone?)
We had a great deal of fun using the pigments to create the most stunningly elegant and expensive looking smokey eye. I can finally see why people use loose pigments, the effect on the skin is just something else, another level of quality. The texture of these ones is different to the regular MAC pigment powders. As you can see from the photo above, they are like little pots of dust and rubble. I won't lie, they are difficult to apply without making a complete mess. I actually think that using them wet will minimise the fall-out and stop you looking like a human disco ball. I also think that applying them with fingers may also work, at least just to lay down the colour. I used a combination of blending brushes and flat eyeshadow brushes and although they blend like a dream I just could not minimise the amount of fall-out. So absolutely, definitely use them BEFORE you put on your foundation as you're going to have to clean your face of glitter once you've finished your eyes. This is not for when you're in a hurry. The colours are so versatile and work equally well applied on their own or blended together. It is worth checking them out next time you go to MAC. I'm in love with them and hope to be putting them to good use this summer. Score 9/10
Last but not least came the new Diorskin Nude Glow Healthy Glow Summer Powder in Aurora (phew.... ). I blogged about seeing this about two weeks ago and I couldn't stop thinking about it. I told my friend and the sweetheart bought it for me.
|Dior Healthy Glow Summer Powder in Aurora|
|One of the prettiest compacts this summer, n'est-ce pas?|
This will probably be my most used product this summer. I'm not a fan of full-on bronzers but this is pale enough to be applied liberally and haphazardly to provide that gorgeous summer glow without looking like an extra from The Only Way is Essex. It is slightly shimmery, but it needs that touch of shimmer to give that 'glow'. I normally prefer bronzing powders to be matte, but this is somehow a hybrid between bronze, blush and radiance powder so it gets away with it. It is beautiful to look it, beautiful to hold, and luxurious to use. The brush it comes with is beautifully soft and a welcome change to the scratchy cheap brushes that usually come with compacts. It's a bit small to sweep all over the face, but for cheek top-ups on the go it's perfect. I've been sweeping it all over my face over my BB cream with my Ecotools blusher brush, concentrating it on my cheeks. The colour on me is a peachy pale bronze and I can skip blusher if I want to go for an au-naturel California beach babe type look. Very apt as I'll be in California in three weeks and this baby is definitely coming with me. Score 10/10
Thank you, my dearest darling friend for these wonderful presents! A gift of beauty is a joy forever :)