For the last few years, Shu Uemura has used its holiday collection to collaborate with Asian artists (including photographer Mika Ninagawa and fashion designer Tsumori Chisato). This year’s holiday collection is a fantasia on femininity, explored through the lens of filmmaker Wong Kar Wai (Chungking Express, In the Mood for Love, My Blueberry Nights).
The film (inspired by a collection of poems by Charles Bukowski, Burning in Water; Drowning in Flame) is called Mask. The actress is Sandrinne Pinna; makeup by Kakuyasu Uchiide.
The corresponding collection is gorgeously, sumptuously conceived and packaged (and eminently giftworthy).
Shu is probably best known for their lashes, brushes, and cleanse-off oil, and the holiday collection offers all three.
The premium edition “dance in glitter” lashes are $75; the point/accent rhinestoned “jeweled love” lashes are $27.
The Flashing Gold mini brush set is $69, and contains a cream color brush, powder brush, eyeshadow laydown brush, and “precision” brush (for eyeliner or lipcolor). The case features an image from Wong Kar Wai’s film.
The collection also includes Shu’s brightening (purple) formula of makeup removing cleansing oil, in limited edition lenticular packaging. It’s $80 (for 15.2 fl. oz.); just $2 more than the regular packaging.
As for color, the themes of the collection are “rouge et bleu” — and sparkle.
The collection includes three Rouge Unlimited lipsticks ($26 each, special packaging). Glitter Fuse is sheer peach-pink with dense, very fine, iridescent gold shimmer (it reads mainly as gold shimmer on the lips). Pink Flush is a sheer, “frozen” blue-pink. Rouge Luster is a strawberry red-pink with a few tiny gold sparkles. Shu’s lipsticks are lightly scented — something floral, but I can’t put my finger on what it is. The fragrance doesn’t bother me.
There’s also a limited edition Lustrous Glow pressed highlighting powder, Pleasure Rose ($55). It’s a very delicate, subtle pale pink — more “glow” than shimmer. I think you could easily wear it all over the face. Some kind of production issue delayed the powder’s arrival for sale on Shu’s U.S. site, but it will be available there no later than next Wednesday.
Festive Rouge includes a burgundy shimmer and a glitter topcoat (golden shimmer with larger round silver mirrors). The glitter polish has a gel/jelly consistency so it transfers the sparkle from bottle to brush to nail very nicely. Both polishes are SO smooth. I swatched (1) three coats of the burgundy (though it was opaque in two), (2) three coats of the glitter, and (3) two coats of burgundy + one coat of glitter.
I think I actually prefer the color combination of the second duo: creme royal blue and silver shimmer with holographic round pieces.
And finally, there’s Glorious Masquerade glittery mascara, a clear, “topcoat” mascara with tiny, very subtle orange-gold iridescent sparkles ($30).
For Americans, these products are only available through ShuUemura-usa.com (and you can get free shipping at any price with code WKWHOLIDAY or WKWSHIP, valid through the end of the month). The U.S. did not receive the Burning in Water and Drowning in Flame eye and cheek palettes.
Shu Uemura provided these products for swatching purposes.