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· Beauty Notebook: NARS Divine

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Beauty Notebook: NARS Divine
by Dorothy

I have, up to now, resisted NARS duos. For one thing, although beautiful, they're not cheap; for another, I only really got "into" eyeshadow a couple of years ago. Even now, I usually wear a highlight, some eyeliner and mascara, and a wash of neutral shadow (NARS Cairo is my current favourite), nothing beyond that.

Upon seeing the Divine duo ($32), a silky dark chocolate matte shadow paired with a highly pigmented, balls-out fuchsia, my first thought was "What am I supposed to do with this?" A friend suggested full-out, John Cameron Mitchell in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, drag queen makeup, which I have concluded I don't know how to do. Another friend, a bona fide eyeshadow junkie, said "Well, whatever you do, don't put it on your lower lids. I speak from experience."

It must be obvious by now that Divine takes me out of my comfort zone. No makeup routine that involves shocking pink eyeshadow is ever going to look natural, but when I applied the shocking pink as a wash and blended the chocolate shade into the crease, I was surprised at how well it worked.

This is me in Divine (please forgive the silly face, you wouldn't believe how hard it is to take these photos), brows pencilled in, concealer applied under the eyes and everywhere I have a tendency to redness, powder, but no blush, as I didn't want the colour to compete with the shadow. On the lips, I applied just a bit of a sheer chocolate/berry shade (Lipstick Queen Saint Berry), mostly for definition.

Although this is not a look to combine with a bare face, it turns out the fuchsia in Divine is beautifully judged, its undertones balanced between purple and red, so it does not make the wearer look sickly or tired. Combined with an eyeliner in a deep purple (I used MAC's Fluidline in Macroviolet) and black mascara, it actually makes green eyes "pop". I will not be changing my daytime routine, but I think I may pull this out for parties.

On the left, a close-up. I've applied Divine fairly lightly because that's my style, but the effect seemed to me like a soft echo of early '80s makeup, with its exaggerated crease definition, so I tried a heavier application:

(Ignore the hair; it does whatever it wants, I'm sure you'll read more about that.) The camera washes things out, but perhaps you can see the basic effect. I think it still works, although I doubt I would ever wear this heavy an application; it still looks like makeup and not pinkeye or a bruise, which was really my major concern with fuchsia eyeshadow.

Now I am lemming other NARS duos, which cost the earth up here in Canada. Oh dear.

I love the vague grottiness, cheek and bad taste of music videos from the early '80s. I initially thought of Cyndi Lauper's video for "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun", but, you know, everyone's seen that.

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11/27/2008 [4]

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