“A woman is only as good as the light & peace she radiates” (Coco Chanel)
In her second homage that’s inspired by the interplay of light captured throughout her photographic journey of East Asia, CHANEL’s makeup director Lucia Pica has created a collection that can be summed up in two words: easy glamour. With Summer just around the corner, these are exactly the types of products I’m all about — fuss-free yet still put together, and in my opinion, no one does that better than CHANEL.
707 Lumières Naturelles Les 4 Ombres, limited edition (CAN $85.00) | Comprised of 4 nude shades in a mix of soft mattes & shimmering satins and marked with the iconic double C’s on the top left hue, Lucia Pica’s aim here was to create a palette that “enables you to let go without looking plain with your Summer makeup“. The texture on all is positively STELLAR, showing wonderful pigmentation and a smooth blendability, while staying power is excellent when applied over primer (as my lids tend to get oily, I never wear eyeshadow without primer). I’m all about neutrals all year-round and while I have plenty of said colours in my collection, I like how this palette takes the guesswork out of the equation; all you need to create an effortless Summer eye look can literally be found in these four hues.
057 Lunaire Ombre Première Gloss, limited editionmakeu (CAN $42.00) | CHANEL introduces a new chapter in the Ombre Première family: gloss (also available in Solaire – a gold version, not shown). With surprising colour saturation for a product that’s emollient in nature, this is a platinum/silver shade that provides a brilliant slick of colour. Best when applied using a finger, it looks amazing over bare lids and with a few coats of mascara, as well as against lightly bronzed skin to back it up. If you don’t mind a more editorial “deconstructed” look, then you can also layer this over eyeshadow — although be prepared for some creasing (which can be a unique effect that I totally don’t mind). In a pinch, you can even dab a touch under the brow bone, along the inner eye corner, or even along the tops of cheekbones as a unique highlighter.
224 Metallic Flash Stylo Ombre et Contour, limited edition (CAN $40.00) | When it comes to Summer makeup, retractable pencils such as this are my go-tos. Also available in Pure Flesh & Vogue (both not shown) in this collection, Metallic Flash is a gorgeous pewter shade with complex shimmer, and can be worn as liner, as a base to anchor colour on top, or smudged out on the lid as shadow. Staying power (over primer) is excellent, and the fact that it’s in this format makes it a perfect travel companion for on-the-go touch ups.
Duo Bronze et Lumière, both limited edition (CAN $95.00/each) | *Pauses for a few hours to admire the perfection of design* And we’re back … Once again, CHANEL has managed to elevate to bronzer/highlight duo to a new level. Created with luminosity in mind as opposed to more traditional bronzing/highlighting, these two duos are able to accommodate a broad range of skin tones. With a matte bronze hue on the left and a soft highlight on the right, each half is individually large enough that you can grab with a brush for application, or if you’re lazy like me, you can save yourself some time and swirl them together — this way you literally get the best of both worlds.
Clair Duo Bronze et Lumière | Perfect for fair complexions, the bronzer shade leans light caramel while the highlighter is a soft peach/pink with ultra fine shimmer that’s never chunky. When combined, the two shades create a petal hue that will make a lovely blush over tanned skin. On deeper skin tones, this duo can work as a natural highlighter when the two are swirled together, without fear of it coming off as ashy.
Medium Duo Bronze et Lumière | Speechless … for real. The soft chocolate hue of the bronzer can also double as contour, while on the right the molten gold of the highlighter literally beckons. Swirled together, you get THE most perfect sun-kissed gleam and I can’t proclaim my love for this duo enough; I’ll let the swatches below speak for themselves.
212 Contraste Rouge Coco Flash, limited edition (CAN $46.00) | Also available in Lumière (not shown), Rouge Coco Flash (see more shades here) replaces the previous Rouge Coco Shine, providing deeper pigmentation, stronger hydration and tons more shine. The deep colour seen in the bullet of Contraste applies significantly lighter, as seen in the swatch below — laying down as a dusky pink/mauve and wearable by a broad range of skin tones. Another perk is that this can also serve as blush by dabbing along cheeks for a flush of colour which, I might add, provides that natural looking glow you get from a day spent by the beach (wishful thinking, but it’ll do).
Le Vernis, all limited edition (CAN $33.00/each) | You’ll note in the swatches below that I’m showing all 3 shades of this collection, but only 2 bottles in the photos; that’s because I picked up Open Air after I had shot the rest (I had to; the collector in me wouldn’t rest otherwise). Recent years has shown vast improvements to CHANEL’s nail polish formulation as well as the brush, and this collection stays true to that, and also includes a couple of colours that I’ve never seen the brand do before. I love a good beauty surprise, don’t you?
NOTE: all swatches below are with base coat but no top coat.
703 Afterglow | A semi-sheer beige base with incredibly fine shimmer that’s not overly visible (CHANEL’s iconic “secret shimmer”), but which still lends an interesting depth to this shade. The formula is creamy in flow and 2 coats leaves a slight transparency that I personally love, although a third layer will definitely make it opaque, as seen in the swatch below.
709 Purple Ray | A greyed lavender hue with a slight jelly-esque texture, it is totally self levelling in application and comes to a brilliant glossy finish. The first coat lays down with some sheerness but becomes fully opaque by the second. What interesting about this colour, is that it feels like a roughed up pastel to me, and thus made slightly more “adult” by this murky tone — something that I absolutely love.
705 Open Air | A fresh periwinkle blue cream hue, this is a colour that I’ve yet to see CHANEL create — and I literally went through my entire stash to find anything similar: I couldn’t. Self-levelling in application and with an excellent density + flow, the first coat displays some transparency but it becomes fully opaque by the second layer. I love it on hands, but something tells me it’ll look exceptional as a Summer pedi shade.
A quick glance through any of my CHANEL posts makes it obvious that I have a “thing” for this brand, and it’s true: I have been a devoted fan for decades, for many reasons but primarily because of the quality. And yes, there have been some misses over the years, the many hits have kept me coming back for more and that excellence factor is what makes this entire Cruise 2019 Collection worth looking into. While I’m impressed with every single piece shown, I’d say you won’t want to pass up the Medium Duo: it’s an absolute must-have. For the record, ever single item is limited edition so, fair warning.
Available at CHANEL beauty counters
Kindly provided by CHANEL for my unbiased consideration