‘True Luxury is meant to last‘ – Kilian Hennessy. To mark the occasion of ten years in the perfume industry, Kilian Hennessy created the ‘From Dusk till Dawn Collection’ in homage to one of his favorite artists, Gustav Klimt. The collection comprises of two new fragrances, ‘Woman in Gold’ and ‘Gold Knight’. Both the scents play with dualities: darkness and light, feminity and masculinity, modernity and proud tradition. As with all Kilian Collections, From Dusk till Dawn is about seeking luxury in every aspect of one’s life, finding elegance in every day. ‘I wanted to mark this milestone with something unexpected. Something out of the norm, where I would be able to take inspiration from fine art and translate it into the world of perfume.’ – says Kilian Hennessy.
The fragrance is housed in a magnificent coffret, beautifully embellished in homage to Klimt’s masterful signature style. The black bottle is adorned with Kilian’s signature finishes including the engraved plaque, galvanized cap, both rendered in gold tone – comes inside its own sculptured enameled box. Once opened, the mirror metal lid inside reflects the luminosity, mysterious glamour, and jewel-like quality of each bottle.
The faceted flacon is inspired by the timeless cognac carafe and is created by a traditional glass-making technique requiring 12 craftspeople. The bottle is finely engraved in a light reflecting pattern that replicates the brand’s iconic ‘K’ and also bears the golden plaque, finished with a heavyweight stopper, fashioned from metal and glass.
‘Woman in Gold’ is inspired by 1907 portrait of leading Viennese art patron and taste-maker Adele Bloch-Bauer who was the only woman Klimt painted twice. The perfumer for ‘Woman in Gold’ is Calice Becker. The paintings fascinating contrasts and complexities, bewitching glamour, and intrigue inspired Calice to create this ‘texturized and brilliant, rich and voluptuous scent’. The top notes are Bergamot, middle notes are Rose and Vanilla Absolute, and base notes are Patchouli and Akigalawood.
To me, the notes that stood up on my skin are the rose, vanilla, and patchouli, in a delicate, expensive, and feminine manner. The Akigalawood, which is an exclusive patchouli molecule, give the sophisticated and expensiveness feel to the scent. It is delicately powdery at the same time as well as clean and light-weight, not very overpowering but warm. The dry down of vanilla is absolutely delicious. The scent does not change much on my skin and the staying power is good, lingers around for the whole day. I would not wear it every day but it is a special occasion scent, when you feel the best, when luxury is your agenda.
It is indeed ‘A Perfume as complex and dazzling as the woman who wears it’. Kilian is available at Holt Renfrew, Saks Fifth Avenue, Net-A-Porter, Harrods.
Hourglass is one of the brands that I reach out to almost daily, either it is their blush or it is their powder, they are one of my favorite formulas. Hourglass came out with two new limited edition palettes this holiday season. I know I am late but I ordered them from Sephora last week and posted my haul picture on the Instagram and asked for which product you want me to review first. The hourglass palettes were the most asked for, so here I am with the review and swatches of both the palettes, Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Volume 3 and Hourglass Ambient Metallic Strobe Lighting Palette.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Volume 3 Palette
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Volume 3 Palette (CAD $95) features three best selling powders and three new exclusive powders for a flawless complexion. The palette is travel-friendly and can be used for day or night look with the six shades in this palette. The packaging is limited edition rose gold case which looks very luxurious and the size is perfect for travel as well as looks great on the vanity. The three best selling powders included in this palette are Ambient lighting powder in Dim Light, Ambient Lighting Powder in Diffused Light and Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Luminous Bronze Light. The new powders are Ambient Lighting Blush in Surreal Halo, Ambient Lighting Blush in Pure Effect and Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder in Hypnotic Strobe Light.
The powders are formulated with Photoluminescent Technology which captures, diffuses, and softens the surrounding light for skin which makes the skin look softer, younger, and lit from within. Looking at the shades of powders in this palette, it is an amazing option for day to night looks to finish, brighten, contour, and highlight the skin in a single compact.
The shades are described as (From top to bottom in the swatch below):
Dim Light – a neutral peach beige powder that blurs imperfections and highlights the complexion
Diffused Light – a soft, warm, pale yellow powder that conceals redness and gives skin clarity
Luminous Bronze Light – a medium tan shade fused with Luminous Light for a softer, candlelit warmth
Hypnotic Strobe Light (New) – a champagne powder infused with multidimensional pearly for a sublime highlight
Surreal Halo (New) – a deep berry blush fused with Surreal Light for a vibrant flush of color
Pure Effect (New) – a bright petal pink fused with glimmering rose for a youthful glow
I already have a full size of Dim Light and Diffused Light. I reach for Dim Light as a finishing powder on most of the days and Diffused Light comes into picture during the evenings as a setting powder for me. The powders are finely milled, blends seamlessly into the skin and never look chalky or extra. The staying power is really good, I do not need to do touch-ups and they keep everything on the face intact. Luminous Bronze Light is supposed to contour hollows of the cheeks, and forehead. The shade is a bit lighter for me to be used as a bronzer but it does work well to give that sunlit glow to the face. It always works nicely on my medium tan skin tone as a blush. The new Ambient Lighting blushes are to be used on the apples of the cheeks with that natural glow. Ambient Lighting Powder in Hypnotic Strobe Light works great as a highlight on the high points of the cheeks, bridge of the nose, cupid’s bow and bridge of the nose. It can also be used wet to get the more intense effect.
The texture of all the powders in the palette is smooth and very soft. As mentioned before, the quality is amazing as the full-size products I own from Hourglass. They give a very natural glow, the lit-from-within kind of glow. It does not emphasize my pores or imperfections. The staying power is good, so, all in all, a very good option if you have not tried anything from the brand or if you are looking for a compact version of Hourglass powders to keep in your bag or for travel.
Hourglass Ambient Metallic Strobe Lightening Palette
Hourglass Ambient Metallic Strobe Lighting Palette (CAD $75) is a limited edition palette with metallic strobing lighting powders which provide the brightest highlight to the skin. The texture of the powders is very smooth and velvety. The formula is highly concentrated and great for high points of the face to give a reflective, vibrant glow based on the skin tone and needs. The shades included in this palette are Ambient Metallic Strobe Lighting Powder in Absolute Strobe Light, Pure Strobe Light, and Lucent Strobe Light.
Ambient Metallic Strobe Lighting Powders are formulated with intensely concentrated, multifaceted pearl particles in varying sizes and refraction levels to give the most reflective glow to the high points of the face. This concentrated formula uses Photoluminescent Technology to intensify the way light reflects on the skin. The shade description is as below:
Absolute Strobe Light – a soft pink metallic pearl powder for a captivating highlight
Pure Strobe Light – a pale gold metallic pearl powder for an exquisite highlight
Lucent Strobe Light – a rose gold metallic pearl powder for a magnetic highlight
I have used these with my fingertips as well as highlighting brush to apply it on the high points of my face including top of cheekbones, bridge of the nose, and cupid’s bow. For a more subtle effect, subtle here means a little less intense as these are all highly concentrated, I use the sponge. As with the other powders from Hourglass, the formula is very smooth and velvety, blends in very easily, and quite pigmented. I know this will not be something that I will reach out to every day or every other day but I am surely going to reach this for the parties, especially the Indian parties where I need something this intense to match all those Indian dresses and their details. The Modern Mercury from Estee Lauder and Victoria Beckham collaboration is also one of my favorite highlighter which I reviewed here if you are interested.
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Volume 3 and Hourglass Ambient Metallic Strobe Lighting Palette are available at Sephora Canada.
Combination skin can be sometimes very tricky to handle. Skincare that hydrates, keeps the oil under control as well as works to treats it by preventing congestion and improve the skin quality – is all that is needed for a combination skin. With all these expectations from a line and using it since last month, I am going to give some description of the products as well as my review and experience with them. Sisley Paris Purifying Re-balancing Lotion and Sisley Paris Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care are both suitable for combination to oily skin types. For your reference, I have combination skin which is prone to congestion.
Sisley Paris Purifying Rebalancing Lotion with Tropical Resins
Sisley Paris Purifying Rebalancing Lotion is described as 3 in 1 skincare lotion that purifies, resurfaces and softens the skin. It helps reduce the imperfections and improves skin quality. The key ingredients that work actively to give benefits include: Incense and Myrrh extracts which soothe the skin, Benzoin extract that intensely purifies the skin, D-panthenol which moisturizes and soothes the skin, Java tea extract reduces excess sebum, Salicylic acid exfoliates and soothes, Lady’s mantle leaf extract smoothes the skin’s texture with its astringent properties.
I have been using Purifying Rebalancing Lotion since last month after cleansing my face. I apply the lotion on my face and neck with a cotton pad and then follow with my serum or moisturizer. Since I started using it, I noticed my skin is clearer and healthier. I do not have much problem about shiny areas on the face and it also did not overly mattified it, but more of clearer and smoother skin. I have noticed no congestion and breakouts. The redness which I had due to my breakouts a few weeks back, that is reduced and less visible. It does have a subtle scent that fades away fast but it nothing like alcohol or astringent kind of smell. My skin looks healthier overall.
Sisley Paris Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care with Tropical Resins
Sisley Paris Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care is described as a daily moisturizer for combination to oily skin types. It acts at three different levels of the skin to provide moisturizing, mattifying and purifying effects to the skin. Apart from key ingredients mentioned above for the Purifying Rebalancing Lotion, Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care also includes Marshmallow extract to moisturize skin by delivering molecules able to retain water, bamboo water to mattify, Burdock extract to purify and rebalance, plant-origin glycerin that moisturizes and softens.
I have been using Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care every morning and most of the nights too since last month straight after Purifying Rebalancing Lotion or follow with my serum and then this moisturizer. I feel it is a nice moisturizer, I do not feel any dryness or dehydrated skin but nice moisturized skin with no oiliness. My skin feels very soft and comfortable. Using this with Purifying Rebalancing Lotion, I have no congestion since last two or three weeks. With skin in the hands of these two products, it is healthier and clearer. It does mattify the skin but to the extent that it looks radiant and luminous but not oily. When I use this during the mornings, I have not experienced any rolling off of makeup or anything, everything goes on smoothly over it and stays intact.
These two products have really kept my congestion under control, keeping it healthier and radiant. The breakouts which I had when I started using this, they did not get bigger but they healed quickly. Both the products are a nice size and can be perfect travel companions as well as will look great on the vanity or skincare shelf. I am glad I did use them for a good amount of time to give you this update and recommendation for your combination or oily skin type. My skin seems calmer now and as winter is coming now, I would rather start cheating with this moisturizer for something more hydrating unless you have oily skin, you can stick to this one.
Sisley Paris Purifying Rebalancing Lotion with Tropical Resins and Sisley Paris Mattifying Moisturizing Skin Care with Tropical Resins are available at Holt Renfrew, Nordstrom, Space NK and Net-A-Porter.
*DISCLAIMER – These are press samples sent to ‘The Velvet Life’, all views and opinions are 100% honest and based purely on my own experience.
Regal, Elegant, Luxurious… full stop. Even with these three words, I think I am not doing justification with the fragrance I am writing about in this post. I will try to explain it as much as I can what this fragrance is and what it has done to me. The collaboration between Baccarat and Maison Francis Kurkdjian came into existence for the first time in 2014 when Baccarat, the most prestigious crystal works in the world, celebrated the 250th anniversary of their founding in a limited number of bottles, 250 to be precise. And that started what is now an icon in itself, called Baccarat Rouge 540 Extrait de Parfum by Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris. The partnership was extended, which gave birth to Baccarat Rouge 540 Eau de Parfum and this year, Baccarat Rouge 540 Extrait de Parfum.
Basically, Baccarat Rouge 540 Extrait de Parfum is called a new form of Baccarat Rouge 540 Eau de Parfum, intensifying the power and radiance of the three breaths that compose Eau de Parfum keeping the original inspiration. To deepen the intensity to the Extrait, the bottle is designed and manufactured as such, for the first time, that it dons a dazzling red garment echoing the iconic Baccarat red.
The family and notes are described below:
Olfactory family: woody-amber-floral
Top Note: Jasmine Grandiflorum from Egypt and Saffron
Middle Note: Bitter Almond from Morrocco and Cedar Wood
Base Note: Woody Musk Accord and Ambergris
This fragrance for me opens up as a warm spicy saffron which is rich and thick. Then I smell floral with masculine notes. It is smooth, creamy, woody with a soft undertone of bitter almond coming up. The ambergris in the base note provides a light breeze of mineral aquatic air to the fragrance. The projection is great, and the lasting power is incredible, it lasts for almost 18+ hours on me until I slept and then in the morning, I could still smell it when I had my wrist close to my nose. It is gender neutral fragrance and depends on how it works with the chemistry of your skin. I do smell the masculine notes but not very strong and is as per my liking. Every time I wear this fragrance, it shines on my skin, like literally, I could see the essential oils or the Extrait shining on the area where I sprayed it. This is perfect for all the occasions, where you want to feel the best, it does make you feel an amazing luxurious sophisticated regality. I do not go beyond two sprays and I am sorted for all day and even next day, it just makes the aura around you so beautiful and glorious.
All in all, this is a brilliant fragrance and will be on my Top 5 list of favorite fragrances. I would highly recommend you to try this out on the below-mentioned stores or sample through the official website of Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris which I will link below.
Last but not the least, Maison Francis Kurkdjian – I am a Fan! I reviewed Aqua Celestia from Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris here if you are interested to read.
Baccarat Rouge 540 Extrait de Parfum by Maison Francis Kurkdjian Paris is available at Neiman Marcus stores and online, Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue and official online boutique at www.franciskurkdjian.com
*DISCLAIMER – This is a press sample sent to ‘The Velvet Life’, all views and opinions are 100% honest and based purely on my own experience.
La Prairie Skin Caviar Concealer Foundation SPF 15 is an ultimate indulgence which has skincare benefits in a makeup to create a beautiful and beneficial cosmetic treatment for a younger, fresher, and flawless face. The formula of the foundation has an advanced silicone and polymer technology which utilizes the cross-linked chemistry to bind all treatments and pigments into a silken veil of age-altering color to promote a smooth, radiant complexion. The foundation is encapsulated with a high powered concentration of skin firming caviar extracts, moisturizing liposomes, UVA/UVB sunscreens, anti-oxidants, optical diffusers and long-wearing pigments which help firm and lift the face, transforming the appearance, texture, and overall luminescence.
The key ingredients and benefits of the foundation include:
1) Essential firming properties found in Caviar Extract, Algae Extract, Seaweed Proteins, Malt Extract, and La Prairie’s exclusive cellular complex help nourish and energize the skin and provide anti-aging benefits
2) Ultraviolet absorbers which an anti-oxidant complex containing Vitamin E help neutralize free radicals that can potentially damage the skin
3) Moisturizing properties of glycerin, petroleum, and dimethicone along with essential Amino Acids are encapsulated in Liposome Delivery Systems for targeted and controlled moisturization to the upper levels of the skin.
The foundation is packaged in a glass jar with professional concealer, which is designed a halftone lighter than the foundation, in the cap of foundation jar. The packaging alsi includes a precision brush, for concealer spot application and touch-ups as well as a foundation sponge. There is a 2x magnifier mirror located on top of the cap, making it four items in one.
I have been using this foundation since last few days and every time I use it, it is a luxurious ritual I would say. From taking the product out, till applying and blending it into the skin, everything is so perfect. The texture of the product is very smooth, blends very easily and looks very natural. This is the most natural looking foundation that I have used, skin looks naturally beautiful and bright. It does have skincare benefits and help protects the skin from various age-related as well as environmental factors.
The concealer on the top of the foundation jar is very creamy and pigmented, it is very easy to apply with the accompanying brush, it blends easily and conceals the imperfections very well. When used under the eyes, it makes the area bright. The foundation is buildable and a small amount is needed to do the job. I have combination skin and I did not experience any irritation or breakouts with this. I have used it with my fingers, brush and beauty blender, the results are marvelous with all three. My skin tone is medium tan with yellow undertones and the shade “Golden Beige” suites perfectly with my tone.
Unblended – La Prairie Skin Caviar Concealer Foundation SPF 15
Blended La Prairie Skin Caviar Concealer Foundation SPF 15
I am so pressed by the formula and the finish, it is indeed one of the best foundation I have used. The staying power is great, I did no touchups whole day and it looked as if I just applied it, for almost 9 hours. I would highly recommend you to try this foundation. I do love the La Prairie Skin Caviar Essence-in-lotion and La Prairie Skin Caviar Liquid Lift from the same Skin Caviar line which I reviewed here if you are interested to read.
*DISCLAIMER – This product was sent to ‘The Velvet Life’ as a press sample, all views and opinions are 100% honest and based purely on my own experience.