(Lots Of) Lip Service: Ardency Inn and Laura Mercier

Okay, this is a long one… so strap in!

Instead of breaking this up into two different posts, I decided to combine them. These are my new two favorite lippies. I love them for unique presentation, ease of use, and … for the moment … lack of competition.

I’ll start with Ardency Inn.

The ‘punk’ inspired makeup line features the classic items needed for the perfect punk look: smoked out eyes and natural lips. Ardency Inn features a cozy range of lip pencils, for the perfect nude for any skin tone. My color is Essex… which is a bit of a rusty brown color:

It looks more warm than ‘nude’ on me, but I found that it perfectly compliments my skin tone. The color above (Houston) is a bit too light, and tends to go a little ashy on me.

Essex is a perfect match for my skin tone. It is so moisturizing. You can apply it directly on dry lips, and it moisturizes them beautifully. The color is so flattering that you don’t need a mirror or perfect lighting to put it on. I do believe that’s the point… as most ‘rocker’ looks tend to be on the effortless side. I absolutely love how easy it is to use this pencil. And there’s no sharpening required; simply twist the bottom of the pencil to roll up more product. Easy… effortless… love.

Laura Mercier came out with a ‘weightless’ lip color that actually works. Most weightless colors tend to leave my lips on the dry side… and when I found out that these formulas were ‘wax free’ — I was even more concerned. Pure pigments that don’t leave your lips feeling like you’ve been rubbing sand on them… I had to find out more.

What really made me fall in love was the ‘sheer’ nature of some of the lip colors, despite their rather daunting bullet colors. I just HAD to have the color in ‘Sin’ — which looks black-based purple… but swatches closer to berry.

I was so surprised by this lip color. I love it. It’s very sheer, so it wears more like a lip gloss, and it is indeed truly weightless. You can’t exactly put this one on in the dark, but you don’t have to really pay attention to application to get it perfect. Like Ardency Inn, this lip color leans toward an overall effortless looks and feel.

Both of them are getting lots of love these days. You can find both lovely lippies at Sephora.

FOTD: Marc Jacobs

Now, before I get on with the business of the FOTD, let me give a closer look at the products I used. I finally got to dig into the Marc Jacobs Foundation and I have to say that so far… I’m a fan. The super thin formula is best applied for me  using fingers. I find that the brush ate a lot of product, and I did a better job of ‘massaging the formula’ (it tends to bond to the skin like MAC Face & Body) into my skin.

My color is Cocoa Light. I strongly suggest you try these foundations in person before committing because the range is … interesting. Beige looks more like ‘grey’ — but then swatches an actual beige in real life. Golden (which you’d think would be my color range) is more like Golden Beige… even the darkest shade (which is confusingly ‘golden medium’ , NOT ‘golden dark’. I tested this theory multiple times and Golden Medium is definitely richer in color and slightly darker than Golden Dark). Cocoa initially looked to me to be a flat ‘brown’ variation, but I found that under stronger lights (camera flash… or outdoors in sunlight) it magically picked out my yellow undertones nicely.

I’ll give the flash on the camera credit for picking up that warmth. In weak light… the color looked very flat and a dullish  brown to me.

As you can see, the formula is very thin. It goes on sheer, but can be built to a medium coverage. This formula is FANTASTIC on my oily skin. I’m not so sure this will work as well on drier skin types. The ‘gel’ formula literally absorbs oil on my face. I was really surprised at this. It reminds me of the Urban Decay Naked Foundation… with more of a ‘skin-like’ finish. UD went matte on me, and really made my skin dry (which is so weird, considering how oily I am). This absorbs oil, but wears weightlessly.
For this FOTD, I also used the concealer pen in 00, and the ‘invisible’ brow tamer.

The pen is ‘click action’ , to dispense as little or as much product as you need. The formula is very dense; I found that ‘half’ a click (without fully depressing the clicker at the bottom) was plenty of product for both eyes.

Number 00 is a perfectly balanced neutral yellow tone. At first I thought it would be too ‘ashy’ — but it warms up if you use the smallest amount of product. A little bit goes a very long way.

 The interesting thing about the brow tamer is the brush. The bristles are dense and clumped together, not separated as you’d find with a typical brow (or mascara) product. This feature dispenses more product in the smallest places, and combs through every single hair. However, I would not recommend this product for people with sparse or thinner shaped brows because I noticed that the density of the brush means there is no ‘illusion’ of building thicker brows with this product. It does not lift and separate the brow hairs as say… the Anastasia version would.
See how dense that brush is?
Now, to the FOTD:
FACE
Marc Jacobs ‘Genius Gel’ Super Charged Foundation (Cocoa Light)
Marc Jacobs ‘Remedy’ Concealer Pen (Stand Corrected)
Marc Jacobs Brow Tamer (Invisible)
Bobbi Brown Pressed Powder (Golden Orange)
MAC Blush (Barefaced)
EYES
Sauce Box ‘Creme de la Creme’ Palette:
Shimmer Taupe on lids
Black on outer lashline and under waterline
Guerlain Kohl Me Kajal on waterline and tightline
Volume de Chanel Mascara
LIPS
Ardency Inn Natural Color Lip Pencil (Essex)
*Marc Jacobs products provided as pr samples