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Posts tagged dior

How to use Duos, Trios, Quads, Quintets???! (A few basic shapes that work with all eye shapes)

The first thing I always tell people when it comes to eye shadow application is - find your socket line. And learn to separate that from your crease. 


There is a myth about applying shadows “on/within your crease”. Well that’s fine if you have very defined, even, thick lid folds. But if you have hooded eyes, mono-lids, or smaller lids where the crease is either not visible or not high enough, many eye-shadow looks can be very unflattering or they simply disappear when you open your eyes. 

What to do? Simply replace the word “crease” with “socket line” from today on. If you have mono-lids and hooded lids, it’s important to blend your shadows UP TO your socket line at least. That not only defines your natural contours but also widens the eye. 

  1. Your socket line is where your eyeball dips into your orbital bone. Close your eyes and feel for it.
  2. Flattering eyeshadow looks are all about "creating shadow and light" in the right places. Even if your eye contours aren’t very defined naturally, placing a bit of deeper color along your socket line and a pale shade in the center of your lid will create the illusion of more pronounced contours without making you look too dramatic.
  3. I DON’T recommend creating a fake socket line higher or lower than your natural one. It can go very very wrong unless you’re an absolute pro.
  4. Many times we use brushes that are way too big or fluffy. If you have small lids or eyes, a smaller, round-ferrule pencil brush like the one from 13rushes can make life a lot easier. Go for the flatter, wider brushes if you have a bigger lid space to work with. 

Now that we’ve got that covered, you can get back to the question of “what the heck do I do with this palette that has 2-3-4-5 shades?!” and look at the images above as a reference for where colors go.

Don’t be restricted by the image with the 4 shadow palettes and the labels on each of the shades. It’s there as a reference but the best thing is to look at the eye charts, because you can use any 2 shades in a quad or a 5-color palette as a duo using a DUO diagram.

Steps don’t include liner (optional) and mascara, so you just add them later.

THESE ARE NOT RULES. They’re just basic guidelines for those who aren’t too familiar with eye makeup yet. 

Lastly, when looking for eyeshadow palettes, here are some beginners’ tips:

  1. My palette has one cream/liner/glitter shade! Well, take those out of the equation and see how many regular shadows are left. If there are 3, shadows left, follow the TRIO diagram. If there are 2, follow the DUO diagrams. 
  2. Erm, so what do I do with base/liner/glitter shades? Apply the base all over from lash line to socket bone before you begin (you don’t need to go all the way to your brows unless you want a dramatic look). For glitter shades, you can apply them as a wash all over when you’re done with the rest of your eyeshadows, or down the center of the eye for a “wet look” when you blink. Liner shades are self explanatory!
  3. DUOS: look for those where 1 shade is the same lightness or lighter than your skin color, and 1 shade is darker/smokier. Doesn’t matter if they are metallic, shimmery, matte, sparkly. For most basic daily makeup looks, you just need a light and dark to define your eyes. 
  4. All palettes: make sure there is a "balance of light to dark shades". This means at least 1 softer shade and at least 1 dark shade that is deep enough to act as a definer shade. (There are a lot of palettes where all 3-4 shades are pretty shimmery pastels. Well, sorry but they’ll look nicer on your vanity table than on your face. You need a darker shade there for definition and contouring in order for the palette to look flattering. 
  5. QUADS: What do you do if there are 2 pale shades? Which should you apply on your brow bone, and which as an accent in the center of your eye? The less shimmery/sparkly one on the brow bone, and the more dramatic and reflective one on the center of the eye. If they’re about the same texture, then it doesn’t matter which you use where.
  6. 5-6 SHADE PALETTES: Many people find them overwhelming, but you really don’t need to wear all the colors everyday. You can pick 2-3 shades and wear them as a duo or trio (See diagrams) easily. So they actually give you the most options!

Some Idiot-proof Eyeshadow recommendations:

Duos: Laura Mercier eyeshadow duos. Always well coordinated, with 1 soft/matte shade and 1 darker, richer one. Takes the guess-work out of eyeshadow application.

Trios: A lot of drugstore brands like Wet n Wild Color Icon have pre-coordinated trios with the shades marked out as lid, crease, browbone for you. Just remember “crease” = socket line. In the higher end range, Dior’s 3 Couleurs are beautifully coordinated and easy to use and blend.

Quads: Tom Fords and Chanels have some of the easier to use luxe quads in the market, and L’oreals and Revlons are great in the drugstore range, but if you’re going for the Tom Fords, remember to minus out the sparkle shades. (E.g. 01 Golden Mink is what I’d consider a duo, not a quad, because there are 2 sparkle shades out of the 4, and I’d apply the 2 satin shades using one of the DUO diagrams above, and then decide how I want to apply the sparkles.)

**Laneige Pure Radiant eyeshadow quads (S$40) are a fantastic alternative - not dupes cos there are no exact palette matches, but great alternatives - for Tom Fords (S$100) because the satins and glitter textures, as well as a few of the shades, are actually very very similar. If you love the look of TFs but find the prices a little steep in Asia, take a look at the Laneige counter! See for yourself!


Quintets: Lancome’s Hypnose palettes are still one of my favorites. They usually have the BEST balance of dark and light shades, and they’re perfectly coordinated with each other, so you can pick any 2-3 shades out of the 5 and go.

**Diors are a good option if you have more mature lids or prefer smoother, more translucent pigments but the 5 couleurs are’t as well-balanced as Lancomes, so unless you’re very experienced and know how to add definition using liner and mascara, I’d pick a few colors and use these palettes as duos and trios rather than a quintet.

If you want to break the rules completely and do it like makeup artists do sometimes, NARS’ duos are pretty much on the opposite spectrum to Laura Mercier.

They do have light vs dark shades too, but there are also tons of funky clashing duos designed for maximum drama on the lids. Stuff like Rated R (lime and blue) and Bysance (yellow and violet) can still be applied using the 2 DUO diagrams above, but the final effect will be VERY bold. Probably better for the club than for school or work.

A look at the incredible press visuals for the DIOR 2014 Transat Edition Collection!

Dior Addict Fluid Sticks: Gorgeous, Lush, Slick Liquid Lipsticks!

There’s a plethora of lip creams being launched lately, and there are slight differences to each range, but I have to say I’m very impressed by Dior’s new Addict Fluid Sticks.

They remind me slightly of YSL’s Glossy Stains in texture, except the color is much more intense and doesn’t stain. The formula is water-based, not wax-based, and it goes on watery and slick, but the solvents evaporate quickly, and you’re left with an almost gel-like film on the lips which is high-gloss, but not greasy or sticky feeling.

The applicators are nice and easy to use; nothing as tricky as the YSL Babydoll Kiss & Blush applicators, which is a major plus, since you need to get these on relatively quickly for nice even coverage. 

Wear-time is decent; I had no problems wearing it to the 7-hour mark before I wiped it off for a late lunch. The sheen does wear away a bit after a couple of hours of talking, pressing the lips together, and sipping from a cup, but most of it does stay on.

The 4 “It” shades Dior recommends for the season are variations on coral, and all swatched above:

338 Mirage - coral-toned beige

551 Aventure - pink-hued bright coral

575 Wonderland - pink-toned red coral

754 Pandore - bright poppy red

Of course, there are always coordinating “It” nail shades too.

551 and 754 have matching polishes, but the other 2 nail shades are slightly different. 338 Mirage is a bright orchid purple instead of beige, and the last nail shade is a gorgeous candy pink, 575 Wonderland (which incidentally DOES have a matching Fluid Stick, but it’s 439 so check that out instead of the 575 lippie).

My bet is on 551 and 439 being the hot favorites for the lips, and 575 Wonderland being the winner for the nail category (or at least tying with 551)!

P.S. a note on that last picture; I recalled Aventure looked a little familiar, and found an Innisfree Creamy Tint Lip Mousse No 3 (lip swatch in the link), which looks very similar in tone, if a little brighter, less glossy and more opaque than the Dior. (The Innisfree texture is closer to the Shu Uemura Tint In Gelatos, although there isn’t an equivalent color.)

If you’re in Singapore and on a shoestring budget, these are something to look at as they cost S$17 each.

Rose Pink Lipsticks: Fuchsias with a Red Undertone

Blue-based fuchsias can be a bit scary because they stand out so much against the skin, but a more grown-up way to approach deep, vibrant pink lips is to go with the red-based fuchsias.

Here are 8 that will brighten your face - AND your teeth!

  1. The Body Shop lipstick 201: This fuchsia is the bluest of the bunch I’m showcasing today, but it’s still got a distinctive red undertone.
  2. Shu Uemura Matte Supreme M PK 376: Also known as “Gangnum Pink” this looks like a Europe/Asia exclusive. It’s the softest of the lipsticks today, and has a beautiful velvety rose-petal finish.
  3. Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet No 37 L’exuberante: This deep rose pink has a velvety finish, and is more muted and not as bright as the other pinks, which makes it the most work-appropriate, aside from the gloss.
  4. YSL Gloss Volupté 206 Fuchsia Oran: this deep red-fuchsia gloss goes on a little more pink than red, but it’s beautiful regardless. Best starter shade if you’re not used to deep pinks.
  5. VDL Expert Lip Cube 101: Right between pink and red, this satiny, richly-pigmented lipstick lasts and looks beautiful.
  6. Sephora Long Lasting Lipstick 12: Even more intense than the VDL, this semi-matte transfer-resistant lipstick is one of the most beautiful shades in the Long Lasting line.
  7. Dior Diorissimo 012 Hollywood: Almost more red than fuchsia, this creamy dense lipstick is one of my favorites. The name says it all. It’s instant glamour in a tube.
  8. Sephora Lipstick R09 Valentine: This creamy rose red is the reddest of the bunch here. Perfect if you find reds a little harsh, or if most of them pull a little orange on you. 

Fresh Face: Soft colorful eyes with “POP” lips

Who says you have to wear neutrals with bright lips?

Just keep things soft and luminous, and you can get away with almost any color. 

Here, I’m demonstrating with a soft peachy beige and soft lavender on the lids. I kept the cheeks very luminous and soft (just a radiant pink tinge) and on the lips, I show 2 options that both work with the eye makeup.


Pairing a warmer shade (peach/beige) with a cooler one (soft violet) is a way you can make your eye makeup work with any warm or cool lip color you want.

To prove that, I’ve used 2 lip shades on opposite ends of the warm/cool spectrum!

Products used:

Base: MAC Face and Body Foundation N2

Concealer: Lancome Le Correcteur Pro concealer palette

Powder: RMK Kaleidoscope powder 02

Brows: VDL Festival Brow Pencil in Grey Brown + Canmake Coloring Brow Mascara 01

Peachy-beige shadow: Urban Decay Moonflower

Violet shadow: Urban Decay ACDC

Metallic brown pencil: Urban Decay Corrupt

Mascara: Maybelline Great Lash in Blackest Black

Soft luminous pink blush: Dior Diorsnow Fresh Cheeks 001 *Asia- and Nordstrom-exclusive

Salmon-coral lips: VDL Festival Lipstick 607 Jared

Matte bubblegum pink: L’oreal Colour Riche Matte in P501 Sakura Petal

Diorsnow Dream Skin Collection (Asia- and Nordstrom-exclusive): My Picks and Swatches!

Like most premium houses, “blanc” or “whitening” ranges usually consist mainly of skincare and base products. This year however, Dior has departed from that norm by offering a small capsule collection of limited edition makeup including:

  • 1 x 5 Couleur palette: 874 Tenderness
  • 1 x Fresh Cheeks Glowing Colour Powder Blush: 001
  • 2 x Nail Varnishes: a bright glittery pink, and a soft glittery peach
  • 1 x Addict Pure Gloss: a very translucent nude pink
  • 1 x Lip Maximizer shot through with peach and pink sparkles

My personal picks out of all these are the 5 Couleur Palette 874 Tenderness, as well as the Fresh Cheeks Glowing Colour Powder Blush, which I am completely in love with.

I’d say the real star is the blush. Check out the eye palette mainly if you really love this group of colors, and don’t have anything similar. The blush on the other hand, contains 12g of product (versus the typical 4-5.5g in most premium blush ranges), comes in a gorgeous pearlescent white compact, housed in a grey sleeve, with a separate compartment for a pink bristled brush.

The gloss and Lip Maximizer I decided to pass as the colors hardly show up at all, and I’ve already got regular Lip Maximizer. As for the nail polishes, I was tempted but then again, they weren’t extremely outstanding to me. 

The cons?

  • Availability: Like many exclusive collections, I don’t know at this point if this will be available in most countries other than Asia and the US as a Nordstrom Anniversary release.
  • Price: Needless to say, Dior isn’t cheap.
  • Suitability for darker skins: As a spin-off collection based on the Diorsnow whitening range, it’s not surprising that the colors on offer are better suited to lighter skins, especially since Asia is the primary market. If you have medium to dark skin, you will probably find these colors not strong enough to stand out properly on you.

That said, these are REALLY really gorgeous, and I personally find the blush backup-worthy if you like illuminating blushes and soft sakura pinks in general.

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