New Trend: Strobing

New Trend: Strobing

(note: I’m taking a few days off; it’s too hot to blog. love you guys)

The trend

You probably saw it already: the new trend is called ‘strobing’. Unsurprisingly, it basically means ‘a whole lot of highlighting’. I think it’s the perfect trend for summer, for a lady doesn’t sweat, she glows! 😉

Nikkie has a great tutorial for it. I love her; she’s so funny.

Basically, you’ve got two options to go about it: either you start with a mostly matte base, powder down and then use powder highlighter, or you go for the full glow with a luminous base and cream or liquid highlighters.

the products

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Here are some base products that I use for a subtle glow:

Dior BB Creme, not overly shiny, but certainly not matte and a perfect base for me. Attention fellow Austrians: the lightest color 01 is being phased out! I stocked up on it. 😦 The other colors are staying.

Then I’ve got my usual concealer: Clinique airbrush. This is an undereye concealer with a bit of highlighting properties. Undereyes only, we don’t want our spots highlighted! For blemishes I used my normal, non highlighting concealer (not pictured).

In the middle of the pic I put what should have chronologically come first: two primers. Both are only subtle illuminating primers, not full on glow. First there’s the MAC CC Cream in Illuminate. Illuminate is a light purple color and the only MAC CC cream light enough for me. It is less shimmery than my previous primer from MAC (Fortified Skin Enhancer), but it has a bit of shimmer. Second primer is Clarins Beauty Flash Balm. This is what I use if I want a perfect finish. Somehow Beauty Flash Balm makes all layers go together in perfection. It has a bit of peachy shimmer, but also not too visible. If you want more shimmer in the primer, there are many options out there, from Clarins to pretty much every brand. Personally I think a primer is necessary for a look with a strong highlight, because the primer makes the skin more even. I never had a problem with highlighters enhancing my pores if I wore a good primer.

And last I packed a body glow product onto the pic: Soap & Glory Glow Lotion. I think if we’re going overboard with the face glow we might as well have a matching body. Any shimmery body product will do.

Strobing

And now on to the actual highlighters:

For a more champagney glow I’ve got Benefit Watt’s up, an easy to use cream highlighter. For a pink highlight, the liquid high beam, also by Benefit. For a light golden glow I have my alverde Schimmerfluid Meeresglanz. This was sadly a limited item, but there are many good options at the drugstore these days.

And for powder highlighter I’ve got the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Lightscapade. Not pictured, but Kiko has released some great new powder highlighters: beam of light (review upcoming).

And if you don’t have a powder highlighter, there’s no need to rush out and buy one (unless you want to) because in reality a light shimmery eyeshadow will the do the trick just as well. Here I’ve got my Extra Dimension Shadow in A Natural Flirt, simply because it was on top of the makeup drawer. You only need to make sure it is not too shimmery and blends well. 🙂

the application

With liquid highlighters (and the creamy stick of Watt’s up) I still use my fingers for application; I simply use more than I would use for a subtle look. The biggest change for me was in appliction of powder products: I used apply them with a fan brush, but it never quite looked like I wanted. Not enough, not well blended etc. For strobing I started to use a blush brush instead and finally it looks the way I want it to look! I’ll stick with the blush brush. (actually I’m using the Bobbi Brown Face Blender. That thing blends everything like a charm.) For smaller parts (inner corner, top of lip etc) I’ll use either fingers or a small eye blending brush.

So that’s it, have fun with your highlight and ditch the contour. 😀 Let’s all be faeries, wheee!

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benefit The Bronze of Champions

benefit The Bronze of Champions

Benefit has lots of pretty looking and cool sounding products. And then they have these really awesome kits with several of their products in smaller sizes. These are perfect for people like me, who want to try all the things and never use the big sizes up. Naturally, I have several of these kits and today I want to show you my personal absolute favorite of everything benefit, the Bronze of Champions set.

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The packaging alone is to die for, not only is it pretty funny to look at, but it also very sturdy. This is my go to travel make up set and I have thrown it into my suitcase without care often enough and it still looks like this.

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When I’m home I put it into my book case sometimes. Click to enlarge and read.

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So, what’s in it?

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Going by the numbers benefit put there: First there’s eyeshadow, one cream and one powder. The colors are bikini-tini and thanks a latte.

Then the bronzer, hoola, the highlighter watt’s up, the mascara they’re real and last the lipgloss also named hoola.

Basically, you’ve got a whole bronze and highlighting look there. For travels I pretty much only pack up foundation and concealers, my brow stuff and regular powder in addition to this.

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Swatches!

On top is the highlighter, watt’s up, underneath the cream shadow bikini-tini and next the powder shadow thanks a latte. Yes, the cream eyeshadow is lighter than the highlighter. Of course you can always switch stuff around as you like it. I have made the experience that neither the cream nor the powder shadow have much staying power on their own. However layered they last very well on me, no additional base needed.

The last two are the hoolas, the matte bronzer and the lipgloss. The bronzer works perfectly for pale skin. I’m not sure how it would be for darker skin, but it can be layered. The lipgloss comes out looking like caramel, but you can see it spreads out to be colorless with only bronze sparkle in it. Like most lipglosses it doesn’t last very long. It comes with a sugary scent. I actually like that scent and I’m usually picky about that.

I forgot to take pics of the mascara, but you’ve probably read reviews of it before. It creates va va voom lashes and it does not smudge or crumble on me.

All in all this is a useful set and everything goes very well together.

Foundation Reviews

Foundation Reviews

I’ve been procrastinating on this post so hard, oh my. When I ran out of my Catrice Foundation I had to find a new one, because that one had been discontinued. I thought, well how hard can it be? Very, very hard, it turns out.

For preparation I rewatched Lisa Eldridge’s Foundation Course, which is so helpful. And I decided to ask for samples, like she suggests. Asking for samples in Douglas stores gets you gentle “no”s at best and bewildered stares at worst. Then I went over to Marionnaud and was very pleasantly surprised. I did not even have to ask for a sample. When we decided which foundation might be best for me, the SA walked away and I was like “what” but then she came back with a little pot and filled it with foundation, while apologizing it was probably only going to be enough for two uses, but there wasn’t enough left. Usually they give you samples for three uses at least, I have discovered. So, yay, I got to test some stuff!

 

Clarins Foundation Teint Haute Tenue (=Everlasting Foundation)

This comes with SPF 15. The coverage is on the strong side, between medium and full I would say. The finish is mattifying, but still sort of dewy, if that makes any sense. It lasted through the whole work day, only rubbed off on the sides of my nose. It emphasized the dry skin parts a lot. I’d say it is best for normal to oily skin.

 

Giorgio Armani Maestro Fusion Makeup

Also SPF 15. This feels so amazing upon application, unlike anything else I used so far. The color selection is also pretty great. The coverage is light, it covers my pores, but not any blemishes. It offers less coverage than my Dior BB Creme. The finish is completely matte, emphasized dry skin. This is best for people with oily skin who don’t want much coverage, imo.

 

YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation

Do you know this situation, where you applied make up in the morning, then spend the day kicking around, not looking at yourself in the mirror, and then maybe you go out in the evening and you get home sometime past midnight and you see yourself in the mirror and think: “OMG D:” or is it just me?

So, when I applied this foundation and did what I described above and then looked at myself in the mirror in the middle of the night I went: “OMG :D”! I now understand why many celebs swear by this. Somehow this foundation looks better after several hours of wearing than it does when you apply it. I don’t know how, but I swear it happened to me.

Has SPF 19, light coverage (like the Maestro above), dewy finish. It’s not mattifying, does not emphasize dry skin. I really want a full size of this, but since the coverage is less than what my Dior BB Creme offers, I refrained. I might buy it when the BB Creme runs out. Best for dry skin. Does not emphasize fine lines.

 

At this point in my research I had swatched almost every high end foundation. Everything by Chanel was out for being too dark, except for the new Les Beiges Fluid, which doesn’t really have any coverage, I think it’s more of a primer. Everything by Clinique is pink or orange, Shiseido had some good stuff, but again not enough coverage. I didn’t think it was that hard to find something with medium coverage that is not drying.

So I purchased the Maybelline Fit Me Liquid Foundation on a whim.

It comes with SPF 18 and has a good range of colors. The lightest, 105, is only a little too dark for me. Sadly, the coverage is light and the worst thing about it is that two hours in, my nose turns shiny and no touch ups on earth help. And as you probably noticed reading this post, my skin is mostly dry. I even wore mattifying primer. I don’t know what’s up with that.

 

Finally I found my new holy grail foundation, completely on accident:

I let the MAC Makeup Artist do my face and she looked at my skin and said “You’re more on the dry side, hm?” and then she pulled out a compact foundation and I was like “but aren’t these drying?” and she explained to me that all the MAC liquid foundations are oil-free and it’s the compacts that are made for dry skin. Well this explains why the liquids never worked out for me.

MAC Mineralize Foundation Compact

SPF 15, medium coverage, not drying, does not emphasize dry skin. Can emphasize fine lines, when applied too much. Thin layers are the key. Lasts very well, needs to be taken off carefully or it will clog pores.

 

And while I’m at it, the foundations I already owned:

Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions liquid makeup

Too dark and too orange, but still the best emergency acne makeup: Strong coverage, absolutely mattifying. When I really want to make sure my nose does not get shiny I apply this without any primer. Lasts all day. Dries the skin something horrible, can not be worn two days in sequence. Emphasizes dry skin, aggravates dry skin, makes it look redder. Can look very cakey. What I do is, I use this on my nose and chin when I get really bad break outs and do the rest of the face with something else.

Does not list SPF, but includes Titanium Dioxide and Iron Oxides, so I believe it does offer some sort of sun protection.

 

Diorskin Forever Fluid:

SPF 25. The name is program, this is another one that needs to be cleaned off well at the end of the day. Medium Coverage. Sometimes my nose gets really shiny and sometimes not. Might be connected to primer/powder. I wouldn’t call this either matte or dewy. This would in fact be my go-to foundation if the lightest color wasn’t too dark for me. This thing oxidises into an orange tint. I checked it on photos and it’s not noticable there, but I notice it in the mirror. 😦 I use this in summer when my skin is darker (does not usually happen) or together with the Clinique Anti Blemish.

Diorskin Forever Compact:

Also SPF 25. This is what I keep at work for touch ups. The color, even though it is the same number as in the fluid (010) is absolutely perfect for me. It’s light enough and it doesn’t change. It’s mattifying and gives good coverage, on the strong side of medium I’d say. But I think it’s too dry to use it as a foundation in the morning as opposed to only doing touch ups with it.

 

I also have a mini size of Benefit’s Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow, but it’s really too dark for me, so I didn’t even test it properly. I also tried Lancome’s Teint Miracle, but it has way too little coverage.

And that’s it! If you made it here, you deserve a cookie. Thank you for reading and sorry for the lack of pics, but I used up the samples completely.

Glossybox Österreich Januar 2014

Glossybox Österreich Januar 2014

A new year, a new Glossybox.

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A new ribbon, too. The box itself looks different too, tbh I liked the older one better, it looked classier. Now the box is shiny, and instead of just the logo it also has “Glossybox” on it and the shade of pink is more squeaky?

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Samples of Calvin Klein Down Town; not the usual spray samples, but three of these things you rip open to smell.

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First look into the box.

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100% spa by Karmameju: A konjac sponge! I heard good things about these.

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Benefit the Porefessional: the tube next to the packaging is NOT the one that came with the packaging (it’s still unopened); Glossybox included a 3 ml sample, I’ve already had a 7,5 ml sample, so you get a review right here (reminds me that I have lots of Benefit products that I need to review).

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It looks like this out of the tube, sadly I squeezed out too much.

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Spread out it is invisible. It leaves a silicony-silky finish, hides pores and small wrinkles. For comparison, my naked arm:

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Yeah, it’s probably not that visible on pics, but the porefessional leaves an unreal finish, your skin looks more like a doll than human. Uncanny. As a primer, it does what it says, it covers pores. Other than that, nothing. It does not make my makeup last longer, it feels a little drying. I guess you should only apply it to areas with large pores, as it’s completely useless on the side of your cheek. Personally, I’m using those samples, but I wouldn’t buy a full size.

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La Roche Posay Hydreane Riche: I think I had this in a box before? I’m very happy about it because my skin is being unreasonable and I think this cream helps.

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Opticalm Gouttes Bleues: I checked it and the bottle is see through  – the liquid IS that blue! On the one hand, eye drops are a nice idea, who doesn’t get dry eyes sometimes? On the other hand, it’s electric blue and contains mostly flower extracts – a bad idea for someone with allergies.

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bebe more Fresh eyes & face cleanser for sensitive skin: I am super on the fence about this. On the one hand, the bebe more cream they sent before has been the worst cream I tried on my face EVER! I have been meaning to write a scathing review for a month. On the other, it looks like the sort of cleanser that I really like.

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I couldn’t get a better pic of the ingredients, sorry. There are not too many ingredients and nothing that raises my hackles. But the cream looked okay too and it wasn’t. I’ll keep you updated on this.

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And last, the obligatory hair full size. Please take a second to read what it says: Gliss Kur Million Gloss Kristall Öl: Shimmering gloss & millionized light reflexion. Like, what? Did they hire the marketing dude who usually sells L’Oreal mascara?

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A look at the ingredients shows that while the color is different and the name is a mouth full, it is exactly like EVERY other hair conditioning product on the market: silicone, silicone, apricot oil. Yawn. Well, alright they changed the argan for apricot, but that’s about it. Not exactly an innovation.

 

Overall: I like that they put in a benefit product, even if I already owned this particular one. The sponge is a great idea, as well, something not everybody has yet. You can never go wrong with La Roche Posay. The hair products annoy me endlessly. I have a whole drawer of completely unused full size hair stuff from Glossybox. If I unsubscribe, it’s gonna be because of those. Who needs this many, even if you only try them out?

Well, I will se what the february box brings before deciding.

Favorites of 2013

Favorites of 2013

The year has almost come to an end.Time to look back!

I made a list of the beauty things I enjoyed most this year; then I removed everything that I did not get in 2013, else it would have been an all time-favorites list instead of a 2013 list. While not everything on the list came out in 2013, I still think it makes a good representative.

Makeup

Base: Diorskin Nude BB Creme

Blush: Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel, Lancome Blush in Love

Eyes: Benefit They’re real, YSL Palette in Classy, Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof Eyeliner (1 2 3), Chanel Stylo Eyeshadows

Lips: Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Chic, Pygmalion; Lancome Baume in Love in A la folie, cherry, YSL Rouge Pour Couture in Rose Lyrique, Maybelline 14h stay lipsticks

Skin Care

Hands/Body: Balea Hand Creams, Diadermine Body Oil

Face: Biotherm Blue Therapy Serum, Lancome Visionnaire Serum, Lancome Eau Micellaire Doceur

Hair

Lee Stafford Dry Shampoo, BC Boncacure Oil Miracle Volume Amplifier

Nails

OPI Alcatraz… Rocks, What Wizardry is this?, Essie For The Twill Of It, Penny Talk, YSL Jade Imperial, Guerlain Ultraviolet Top Coat

Perfume

Prada Candy L’Eau, Marc Jacobs Honey

Collective Haul post (including Superstition de Chanel)

Collective Haul post (including Superstition de Chanel)

I didn’t buy all of these products at once, or even in one week, but I’d like to put my newer purchases in one post.

The drugstore products:

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Essie for the twill of it, because it is gorgeous (and a dupe for Peace & Love & OPI), a cheap blending brush from Bipa, and Maybelline Super Stay 14 hr lipstick in Beige for good.

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Maybelline 14 hr Stay Beige for good (left) and Maybelline Moisture Extreme in Luminous Beige (right). Colorwise they are dupes, but you can already see on the bullet that the finish is different.

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Top: Superstay, bottom: Moisture Extreme. I may put the moisture one over the other to have lasting power and a slick finish… the Moisture Extreme on its own doesn’t really do much, as it wears off fast.

 

On to the high end stuff, two new things and two old:

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On the left Chanel Le Blush Creme de Chanel in 64 Inspiration, then clockwise Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in 85 Secret, Guerlain Ombre Eclat 1 Coleur in 142 L’Instant Fauve and last YSL Dare to Glow in 3 Naughty Pink.

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Swatches: Top Rouge Coco Shine in Secret, then Le Blush Creme de Chanel in Inspiration and bottom Guerlain L’Instant Fauve.

I think they go together nicely? The lipstick isn’t the lightest of the Superstition collection, but the lightest was so light I don’t think it’d show up much. This one is already very subtle on the lips. The blush was the lightest available. I was afraid of getting a darker color because they are so pigmented. However it turned out they are very blendable and now I want several other colors too. *sigh* While it is a cream blush, the finish is very matte. There is no shimmer in the blushes at all. The creamy yet matte texture is most comparable to Maybelline’s dream touch mousse in my opinion, only much, much finer. And not a mousse. Actually, I don’t have anything else like that Chanel blush.

The Guerlain eye shadow was on sale and is a very everyday color especially to blue eyes.

 

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Comparison: YSL Dare to Glow and Benefit high beam! Top here is Dare to Glow which is more creamy and gel-like, bottom a dot of high beam, which is liquid.

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Blended out. This is not a trick of the light or the camera angle, Dare to Glow really is that much stronger in comparison to high beam! I even added more high beam before I took this picture. Dare to Glow is also much harder to remove (=long lasting) too, which was the reason I bought it (that and it was on sale lol). Most of my highlighters I couldn’t see anymore shortly after applying them, this I can still see after several hours. Dare to Glow of course needs to applied with a light hand or people will think you’re a Twilight Sparklepire. But I love it (so much for using up my Lancome highlighter first).

Colorwise they look similar but not identical; both are very pale pink, but high beam has a cold, bluish shimmer, and Dare to Glow has a slightly warmer shimmer.

And the next and last few items I’ve had for quite a while, to be honest. They were from spring/summer collections I bought on sale.

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Shown left to right: Estee Lauder Pure Color sheer matte lipstick in 02 Rock Candy and 05 Demure, Lancome in Love eyeliner pencil in 30 Chocolate Affair.

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To the lipsticks: they are my first Estee Lauder products EVER and I am impressed. They are long lasting (comparable to my beloved Maybelline 14 hr Super Stays) but not overly drying. Also due to the thin, sleek design they are easy to apply and you don’t need any lip liner. To be honest, since the name is “sheer matte lipstick” I didn’t think the colors would be this strong. But it is (this explains why all the lighter colors were sold out and only the two strongest were left). There is nothing sheer in these lipsticks, other than sheer awesome.

The eye pencil is nice and creamy. It is brown without any sort of shimmer. Most non-black pencils have shimmer in them but this doesn’t. Lasting power is alright.

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Swatches: several squiggly lines with the eye pencil in Chocolate Affair (that teaches me to apply the swatches on my right arm), one blended. Then Rock Candy and Demure. All of these were really hard to wash off again…

 

That’s it, those are the products I bought the last couple weeks (that I didn’t show already). While it looks like a huge haul, it more quietly accumulated… one here, one there.

 

 

little drugstore haul & liquid highlighter comparisons

little drugstore haul & liquid highlighter comparisons

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So, I got these things: Ebelin nail polish remover pads (a repurchase as the old ones are almost used up); Catrice mattifying oil control paper, thought these might come in handy this summer. I have never used any before, so I’m curious. And alverde Schimmer Fluid, more about that farther down.

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And last I got a Kate Moss lipstick by Rimmel.

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Color is 16, which is very bright.

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Swatch. The finish is more matte than shiny and it’s highly pigmented. Despite that, it does not dry the lips out. It feels great on the lips. And it’s cheap. Only downside is that it is scented. Not badly, but I’m campaigning for less useless perfume in beauty products. No, it’s a great lipstick and I’m tempted to buy more colors.

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And now to the alverde highlighter: Here you can see the small opening of the pump. It’s very directional, you don’t get too much product out. This highlighter seems to be part of alverde’s summer collection, so it’s probably limited edition.

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Comparison to my other liquid & cream highlighters. From left to right, Lancome Eclat Miracle, Benefit Watt’s Up!, Benefit High Beam (both are mini sizes), and last the new alverde shimmer fluid.

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Freshly applied: Top is Benefit Watt’s Up (Which is a stick product and so doesn’t need to be spread anymore); underneath Benefit High Beam, then alverde and last the watery mess that is Lancome Eclat Miracle.

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With the product spread: Watt’s Up!, High Beam, alverde, and Eclat Miracle. You can easily see the strongest ones are by benefit, the first bronzey, the second pink. Alverde comes subtle with golden shimmer and Lancome is subtle with more whitish shimmer.

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Closeup of only alverde (top, golden) and Lancome (white silvery).

In conclusion, alverde is the lightest and most subtle product (but it is buildable). I think the golden color is beautiful and it can be worn in bright daylight without looking like a sparklepire. Consistency and application are most comparable to high beam. It is also super cheap, like 3 ,50 € or so. Only downside? Again the scent. This thing smells of coconuts and pineapples, which I find pretty annoying.

Benefit Posietint vs Alverde Liquid Rouge

Benefit Posietint vs Alverde Liquid Rouge

To be honest, this post is kind of moot by now because alverde has removed the liquid rouge from its permanent range, replacing it with cream rouge instead. But I’d already done the pictures, so…

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Pictured: alverde liquid rouge in lovely pink and benefit posietint (mini size)

These reminded me of each other so I took a comparison swatch.

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Posietint comes with a little brush for application; alverde’s liquid rouge is in a tube.

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Top: Posietint brushstroke, bottom: a drop of alverde.

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Both colors spread out. Neither is very visible. Posietint is more electric pink, but in the end both are very light pink tints for lips and cheeks. The big difference is in longevity: Posietint is waterproof and will not budge, no matter how hard you try to remove it – or blend it out. I have a feeling the pigment stays where the brush went and that’s it. Blending it is a nightmare. Alverde’s product is more gel like in structure and not waterproof, therefore easy to remove. It is better to pat it on than spread it around I found, sadly I forgot to do that when I was taking pictures – patting it in makes the color more obvious.

At the end of the day I find both products to be superfluous if you have a good light pink creme rouge. That’s probably the reason alverde replaced the liquid rouge with a cream. Yet, due to the fact that alverde’s rouge spreads much easier and costs a fraction of the benefit product I declare it to be the winner of this battle. (Originally it cost about 4 € but they’re currently on clearance sale for half of that.)