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August 2009

Couture Monday: Armani Manta Ray eye shadows

Armani manta ray Even though it's still warm, fall is in full swing in the makeup world.  And that means tons of animal prints - not just in fashion but on compacts, like the "manta ray" pattern Armani's fall 2009 eye shadows.   "Inspired by the precious and luxurious materials used in Giorgio Armani fashion accessories, the palettes offer a beautiful selection of color harmonies inspired by nature.  The collection features subtle hues that offer a new take on the timeless color 'Greige,' created by Giorgio Armani."

Meh.  I'm just not sure how the pattern is much different from Armani's previously released fall offerings - it looks pretty similar to the python or croc palettes from years past.  I understand that it's Armani and the company wants to express how the designer is inspired by "precious and luxurious materials" in their accessories, but 1. this is a bit repetitive, and 2. I don't think Armani has used an actual manta ray in their accessories.  Thus, I don't think these are a must-have for the Museum.  Let's hope Armani comes out with an interesting holiday collection (and preferably one that uses something other than crystals!)

Friday Fun: The Balm

The fall makeup collections are everywhere and the thick September magazine issues bursting with fall fashion are weighing down my mailbox, but it's still sweltering here so I wanted to look at some fun summer-themed items from The Balm.  I like to think of this line as a cross between Too-Faced and Benefit - kitschy, retro and girly.  Created by Marissa Shipman, the brand has a "beauty in five minutes" philosophy, which explains why so many of their products are multi-use, and is meant to be "fun and nostalgic."

Below is Hot Mama (pinky peach blush), Bahama Mama (bronzer) and Cabana Boy (eye shadow/blush):

Balm summer
(photos from sephora.com)
I'm not sure if the images are original artwork since I haven't checked these out thoroughly in person, but they would definitely be a worthy addition to the Museum.  :)

Reign over me: Smashbox's fall collection

I was doing my usual Sephora browsing and stumbled across Smashbox's newest collection.  Inspired by the Tudors, the "luxe, sexy, and indulgently sensorial" fall lineup features deep, rich colors housed in elegant faux-leather packaging.  The elaborate crest and tiny crown details truly make these items fit for royalty.  

Reign Jet-Set eyeliner palette and Monarch eye shadow palette:

Reign eyes

Crowned lip gloss and Regal blush:

Reign gloss
(photos from sephora.com)

The outer packaging really is very Tudor-esque - check out the dark oak paneling in this Tudor period room at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts:

(photo from artsconnected.org)

As for the colors themselves, they definitely are reminiscent of the decadent jewels and other adornments of the royal clan.  Overall I think this is a unique idea for a collection and very well-executed. 

Gold's softer side: Estee Lauder's fall collection

_5869215Normally I think gold is more suited to a summer collection (like Paul & Joe's most recent), but Estee Lauder is making it fall-appropriate by introducing a more rosy hue rather than a warm gold.  At first glance I thought the design in the powder was another snakeskin pattern (animal prints are so popular for fall!), but as it turns out it's supposed to be a "hammered gold" pattern.  And sure enough, it's pretty dead-on - look at the palette compared to this hammered gold cuff bracelet.  Nice job, EL!

Small Hammered Gold 

(photos from nordstrom.com and hunnyjewelry.com)

It's a man, baby! Prescriptives Well-Suited collection

Prescriptives just debuted their menswear-inspired fall lineup.  The Curator, sadly, is disappointed.  It's a great idea but poorly executed.  With all the cool patterns they could have done on the packaging, they chose to go with a rather bland design which I'm assuming is supposed to be reminiscent of the strand of pearls pictured in the ad.  Why not a herringbone pattern on the powder?  Or maybe use tweed?  (I'm remembering Stila's tweed-covered palettes from a few seasons back.)  At the very least they could have incorporated a pinstripe on the packaging or actual makeup rather than just in the ad.   I was hoping that the Rose blushes from this past spring would lead to more interesting designs, but unfortunately Prescriptives isn't quite up to the challenge just yet.

(photo from splendidcity.com)

Sephora color-dipped brushes

Sephora brushes Hooray, another brush set that's branching out from the usual black or neutral-colored bristles!  Earlier this year Sonia Kashuk brought us lovely coral-inspired brushes and Lancôme introduced a sleek set of blue-bristled brushes as part of their Declaring Indigo collection.  Now Sephora is following suit with these.  It's the dawning of a new brush era!

(photos from sephora.com)


Couture Monday: Christian Siriano and Victoria's Secret

Following in the footsteps of the successful Heidi Klum-designed makeup collection, Victoria's Secret teamed up with Project Runway season 4 winner Christian Siriano for a limited-edition collection inspired by the designer's work.  Included are lip glosses, eye liners, a bronzer and several eye shadows (the last two shown below.)  Of course, you couldn't have a collection by Christian without at least one mention of the word "fierce", and as such this sparkly black eye shadow is named Gilded Fierce.  Rawr!

Cs for vs


My favorite of the collection though is this black ruffled makeup bag - I think this is the one item that really has Christian's stamp on it, since it's reminiscent of several of his pieces.
(photos from victoriassecret.com and about.com)

Bobbi Brown Ivy League collection

Here at the Makeup Museum I'm not only interested in design and packaging of makeup items, but also the images used to sell makeup.  And I couldn't resist a quick post about this one.   It's almost back-to-school time, which is the Curator's favorite time of year.  Rather than a regular planner I actually buy an academic calendar so I can pretend to either be a student or an art history professor.  This year, Bobbi Brown is enabling me to continue my fantasy with her Ivy League collection.  Makeup crossed with academia?!!  This wanna-be Ph.D. is absolutely sold!