Monday, July 26, 2010

Review by Joeybunny - NARS Fall Duos: Tzarine and Rajasthan

Ah, Monsieur Nars, you never really disappoint me, do you?

NARS Fall is definitely one of the best collections put out by the brand in a few seasons. Seriously, there is not a really disappointing item in the entire color story. Influenced by the gorgeous Daphne Guinness (oh, to be a muse for Nars!), Francois Nars has created a symphony of gorgeously pigmented yet wearable colors for both the avid NARS collector and the curious NARS newbie. Really, hide your credit cards and avoid the NARS counter at all costs, because you will buy something once you see the prettiness!

When I went to Saks to check out the collection, I was not expecting to fall as in love as I did. I fell hard. This was quick, this was lust, this was “OH MY GOD I NEED YOU NOW!” - my bank account could not handle my emotions. I could barely handle my emotions! I managed to only cave into my two biggest lemmings from the collection: Rajasthan and Tzarine eyeshadow duos. Thank goodness for self-control!

The two eyeshadow duos are definitely the stars of the color story. NARS eyeshadows never disappoint me, but I really was not expecting to be so WOW-ed by these. The genius of NARS is that the company produces the most gorgeous spins on colors you feel you have seen before. Just when you think “Oh, that’s just a basic beige” or “Oh, I have a thousand browns”, NARS comes along and slaps that thought out of your mind with just one swipe of your finger on the eyeshadow. The complexities of the tones and shimmer of each shade in these two duos make them unique additions to anyone’s collection. Considering that I have a pretty large assortment of beiges, taupes, gunmetals, and teals, I can tell you without a doubt that I have no dupes for any of these duos. None! That says a lot. Even Sabrina of The Beauty Look Book couldn’t find any dupes, and her eyeshadow collection is bigger than mine. If this doesn’t scream “Run and buy these now!,” then I don’t know what does.

Anyway, let me describe the duos:

Tzarine - A very pretty beige paired with a very bizarre (but in a good way!) gunmetal color. These are just very topical descriptions of the colors. The beige is more of a deeper champagne color, and it’s very cool-toned. The shimmer in this is fine, and seems to be multi-colored. On my skin (currently somewhere between NC40-NC42), this color pulls very cool and light, but isn’t unwearable. It’d be more of a lid color than a highlight color - at least for now, until I become paler in the fall-winter. The gunmetal color is so strange. It is definitely a cool-toned grey with deep blue tones, unlike any other gunmetal color I have. My others pull taupe-y or silvery; a good example of this is Urban Decay Gunmetal, which pulls a definite taupe on me. What pushes this color over the edge is that it has a golden shimmer. That warm cast over such a cool base just creates the most complex sheen, and makes the color unique and un-dupeable. If you love cooler shades on your eyes, this is definite must-have, especially since the colors are so wearable and not ‘in your face’.

Rajasthan - A golden taupe color paired with what appears to be a blackened teal color. Again, that’s just a topical way of describing the colors. The golden taupe color (which is similar but definitely not a dupe of NARS Cyprus) is softly shimmery, but has a definite dirty edge to it. It actually reminds me of MAC Patina, but without that reddish sheen that Patina has. It’s a little more golden-brown than it is taupe, and I can use it as either a lid color, or as a highlight color. Lighter skin tones might find it to be too dark to be a highlight, and would probably use it as either a lid or a crease color. Oh, but that deep, murky teal-ish color - how I love you! It’s a very blackened blue-green, with an unparalleled shimmer. It’s sexy, it’s sophisticated, it’s different. It works in the crease, or as a liner, and I’d even try it as a lid color if I was feeling adventurous. It’s just such a smoldering color, and I am glad to have it since it is so versatile.

(Tzarine swatches left, Rajasthan swatches right - swatch pics more accurate than the eyeshadow pics above!)

Both eyeshadow duos retail for $32, and if you can, I would recommend picking up both. I bet they’d pair well together, and because the colors are so versatile and not garish, they fit easily into a more day-by-day eyeshadow wardrobe. I have already worn Rajasthan twice since I purchased it, and I know that Tzarine is going to become a go-to palette for a basic smokey eye. So, bravo Nars, bravo! You’ve created a real masterpiece with these colors.


  1. Hot damn. If I wasn't already lemming Tzarina I am now...and somehow you have me Lemming Rajasthan as well. Damn you Joeybunny! *Shakes eyeshadow covered fist at you*

  2. I love Rajasthan! But damn, if you aren't making me want to rush out and buy Tzarine as well!

  3. Just when I promised myself I would go on a no buy I have to read this! *looks around for something to sell on Craigslist*

  4. Rajasthan features such unique colors. To punch up the color of the teal, I apply it over Laura Mercier's Blackened Turquoise eye pencil. Although the teal color has depth all on it's own, the layering adds an extra dimension to it. No matter how many teals you have, this one by Nars will earn a place of honor in your collection. Bravo Nars!

  5. OMG, those look gorgeous! My Tzarine is due to arrive today and I can't freaking wait!

  6. Joey,
    I was already tempted by Sabrina's write up on Tzarine but you really sealed the deal my NC42 sister! Did you try out the new blush? I'm wondering how that would look on our skintone.

  7. I wasn't sure about buying these but you have changed my mind. Your descriptions are so wonderful!

  8. Gorgeous!! You're right, NARS is so innovative when it comes to its color collections, def hard to find dupes.

  9. Elvira, sorry! Oops!

    Phyrra, it's SO gorgeous, especially on theeyes!

    Mimi, get both!

    Momma Cindy, did you get one?

    Eileen, I will have to try that trick with the eyeliner! Thank you!

    Cheri, how are you liking Tzarine?

    Lexi, the blush was invisible on me =(

    Bristol Beauty Blog, they are so beautiful!

    Marcia, sorry I cost you money! haha

    DeepaBerar, NARS is my go-to for unique colors/color combinations!


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