Friday, November 30, 2012

A Fragrance Review - Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum.

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb

Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb Eau de Parfum Spray ($105, 1.7 oz) is a fragrance I've been wanting to try for a long time now, mostly out of curiosity because of it's large fan base, and was ecstatic when it was offered as a 100 point perk at Sephora recently.

Flowerbomb is quite different than what I expected it to be. I love florals, so I expected nothing other than the name suggests, flowerbomb, to be an intense explosion of different floral notes. Something obvious - like a punch of geraniums, lilac and roses. Maybe even obnoxiously so, but it's not the case at all.

Notes: Sambac Jasmine, Centifolia Rose, Cattleya Orchid, Ballerina Freesia, Patchouli.

Upon the first spray, it's only strong for a moment (maybe a minute or so) before it already starts to mellow. It's not a punch of flowers as expected, but a soft and sugary sweet (not sickly sweet) tea floral. It's soft, slightly spicy (like spice tea), and after it has really eased in, you get those subtly sweet chocolatey notes (not imitation cocoa, something more refined). Flowerbomb is shy, flirty and feminine - not too complex, but classy and reserved.

It's kind of a like a grown-up tea party in cotton candy clouds, where you're wearing your finest pearls and silk gloves while eating cupcakes and truffles as flower petals fall from the sky. Or the delightful smell of a morning tea latte sprinkled with sugar crystals and a single flower waiting for you on a Victorian tray by your bedside. It isn't loud or overbearing. It's very daytime appropriate, as you don't really notice it's there (but I suppose that depends on how much you spray).

Regardless, it's not something I'd particularly choose to wear at night, I'd choose something a little louder and sexier like Narcisco Rodriguez which I can smell on my skin for hours. I prefer a scent that I can smell on myself since I'm the one who wants to enjoy the scent I'm wearing, but it's nice to wear when you want something subtle, and only very noticeable when someone comes very close. I like to put some on my hand/wrist so I can smell it throughout the day.

I think it's easy to wear, and those who like sugary sweet scents will like this. Don't confuse sweet with cheap or adolescent though - it doesn't have the caramel/vanilla notes that I find can sometimes cheapen a sweet fragrance and it doesn't make me think of highschool.

The more I wear this fragrance, the more I like it, but I don't think it's something I'll be purchasing myself. I really enjoy it, but for my signature scent, I prefer something slightly less sweet. If I collected perfumes, I'd probably get a bottle. 

A really pretty fragrance, but I'm not sure that it's unique enough to match the price tag. It's a I feel like I can find something similar if I look around Victoria's Secret. It's a luxury perfume and a treat for sure, but $160 for 3.4 oz... ouch!!

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

Comparisons to Flowerbomb

In comparison to other florals/sweet fragrances, it's nothing like Prada Candy, which is also sweet, but Candy has strong notes of caramel and vanilla (dare I say cheap?), which are absent in Flowerbomb which is more complex. Coach Poppy Flower is more youthful , fun, fresh and fruity, whereas Flowerbomb is a little more mature and doesn't contain any fruity notes. Gucci Flora Eau Fraiche is a little more in-your-face citrusy-floral and can be smelt a mile away, while Flowerbomb is so much more sweet, subdued and reserved. It's often compared to Bath and Body Works Sensual Amber, which is one of my favorites, and although I agree that they are similar, Sensual Amber is a bit younger and much fruitier and less sugary. But they are both light and share some familiar notes. Also, those that tend to like Thierry Mugler Angel seem to like Flowerbomb, but it's not a fragrance I really care for. They do share the notes of Patchouli and Chocolate, but Angel is much stronger and a much warmer, spicier (almost somewhat masculine) oriental fragrance overall. More of a nighttime fragrance, which Flowerbomb can go either way. The patchouli in Flowerbomb isn't as earthy, and almost barely there (which is a plus for me). I also read if you like Aquolina Pink Sugar, you might like this.

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb

Have you tried Flowerbomb? What's your current favorite fragrance?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Weekly Poll Results - Which Area of your Makeup Routine Needs More Work Perfecting?

Which Area of your Makeup Routine Needs More Work Perfecting?

In this weeks poll I wanted to see which area of your makeup routine do you struggle with. Maybe you can't get your eyeliner to match, or maybe no matter how hard you try to apply your blush as best as you can, it always comes out uneven. Even if you've been a lover of makeup from the beginning of time, I still think that many of us have things we'd like to improve - small or big.

I think I manage pretty well, but if I could improve on something, I'd pick eyeshadow 100%. I don't have trouble with blending or anything - I think it's mainly technique and shadow placement. Sometimes when I want to try something new it ends up being a muddy mess, so I tend to stick with looks I've done before that I know work, or "safe" looks. I suppose it all comes with experience, though! Or maybe creativity? Whatever it may be, I give tons of credit to those who have the ability to wear different eye looks every day.. I'd love to have skills like The Queen of Blending.

The Results Are:

Foundation and/or Powder - 81 votes (29%)
Blush Application - 34 votes (12%)
Bronzer and/or Contouring - 95 votes (34%)
Eyeshadow - 96 votes (34%)
Eyebrow Filling - 50 votes (18%)
False Lashes - 59 votes (12%)
Lips - 19 votes (6%)
None! I think I manage pretty well with everything. - 11 votes (3%)
Other (not specified) - 14 votes (5%)

This poll received 277 votes. (Voters were able to choose multiple answers)

There votes were really close. It looks like the majority struggle as well with eyeshadow being the #1 answer. With one extra vote, Bronzer/Contouring takes second place and Foundation and/or Powder takes third.

If you voted, which did you vote for and why? If you didn't vote, let me know what your answer would be in the comments!

*The weekly poll can be found on the right side-bar. Let me know if you have any ideas for future polls! A new poll will be up shortly.

Sephora Beauty Insider 500 Point Perk - Laura Mercier Flawless Best Sellers.

Laura Mercier Flawless Best Sellers Kit

In my five years of being a Sephora Beauty Insider, I've never cashed in on my 500 point perks. I guess I never find them to be that amazing, and usually wait around for some really awesome 100 point perks (such as fragrance minis!) Well, I thought the Laura Mercier Flawless Best Sellers Kit was a pretty sweet deal and decided to cash in on some of my points.

The Laura Mercier Flawless Best Sellers Kit contains:

I calculated the values based on the full-size products, and the total value for this kit adds up to $61! It sure as heck doesn't look like it, but Laura Mercier is a pricey brand. I think the 500 points was well worth it!

I have yet to try the products, but I've had samples of both the Laura Mercier Primer and Tinted Moisturizer and really liked them. You can see my past review for the Tinted Moisturizer here. Granted I haven't tried any other tinted moisturizers, I think it's quite good for some of my more "natural" days. I'm not sure how the shade Nude (light beige for fair/light skin) will work out, but if anything, I can most likely mix it with other foundations to sheer them out. 

From left to right: Golden Mosaic swatched individually and swirled together, Wheat Eye Basic, Nude Tinted Moisturizer and Primer. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

My November Favorites!

November Beauty Favorites

I know I rarely ever do monthly favorites, but I had to do a favorites list this month since there are several products I've been loving lately and have been getting most of my attention! The list can pretty much go on forever, but I'll try to keep it short!

Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation - I've had a few samples of this and loved it, but have only finally purchased a tube this month. It's probably one of my favorite cream foundation as it's full coverage, yet it looks like skin. It's comfortable to wear and the color Bamboo Beige is perfect for me when I am in the MAC NC30 color range. My only gripe is that it's not budge-proof and starts to get a little shiny and fade around my mouth around 5-6 hours in wearing it. Despite that, I really do love this foundation.

MAC Bombshell Lipstick - This has been the only lipstick I've been wearing all month. It's such a pretty rosy pink with a hint of frost. It can look a little bright sometimes, so when I want something more subdued, I like mixing it with a lighter shade, such as MAC Creme D' Nude.

Revlon Bordeaux Lipgloss - Bordeaux has been my favorite pick for an easy berry lip this Fall. I love how pigmented and moisturizing it is, and that I don't have to bother with a lip liner. Definitely recommend if you're looking for a very wearable berry.

MAC Bamboo Eyeshadow - Bamboo is a fairly popular shade by MAC, but it's never one that I thought I needed. Well, I was wrong and this light beige-peach with a matte finish has found it's way into my MAC Everyday Palette, and has been a color I tend to reach for just about every day. Fabulous for warm skin tones, it's a great blending color and pairs well with copper, golds and browns. It leans slightly orange, so I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for cool skin.

MAC Mulch Eyeshadow - Mulch is another great shade by MAC that I surprisingly didn't own. Although it's pretty much a standard dark bronzy-brown with reddish undertones, it compliments my skin really well and I find myself using often.