File these shell-shaped makeup items under the ones that got away. First up: Guerlain Terracotta Pearly Shell bronzer from their 2009 Summer Splash collection. I have no idea how I missed this beauty!
According to the press release, this and other items in the collection were inspired by "Akoya, the most famous seashell from Tahiti." While the inspiration may be Tahitian, the perfectly rendered swirl pattern and the crispness of the ridges therein call to mind these magnificently detailed Egyptian shell illustrations completed from 1809-1817 under Napoleon 1:
Second, to add insult to injury, this season I have been trying to track down Wet 'n' Wild Beach Bombshell bronzers for months with no luck. I've looked online as well as in easily 10 drugstores in several different states, and I can't find them anywhere! These bronzers are housed in a round compact and are shaped like a seashell with a little starfish peeking out the back. Stock photos aren't available but you can check out real-life pics at Killer Lip Gloss. While not nearly as lovely as Guerlain's powder, they'd still make a nice contribution to a summer exhibition, or even a small special exhibition on shells in makeup.
I'm off to add these to my "impossible to find" wishlist. Hmmph.