Apologies for my Absence

I'm sorry I've been away, and been away without an explanation.

This wasn't a planned hiatus (which is why I didn't write a post announcing the interruption in blogging). It was a convergence of several life events — most importantly, the terminal illness of my grandfather.

I wasn't expecting to take time off, it just... happened. I apologize for not

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Giveaway: Guerlain iPhone Case

Guerlain La Petite Robe Noire iPhone case

Amazing news, readers! On a recent trip to NYC, I spotted (and swooned over) this fabulous iPhone case — which Guerlain created in honor of their newest fragrance, La Petite Robe Noire.

The cases aren't for sale, but through some PR magic, the folks at Guerlain found a few we could give away. SWEET.

This is a Twitter

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Nordstrom Nail Polish Flash Sale

Nordstrom

Good news, everyone! This weekend only (starting today, August 3rd, ending Sunday, August 5th), Butter London and Deborah Lippmann polishes are both buy-two-get-one-free at Nordstrom. (And shipping is free.)

The code is BUYANDSAVE (build your cart, this code will deduct the price of the third polish).

Go nuts!

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Chanel Fall 2012

Chanel, fall 2012, swatches, Les Essentiels de Chanel, Charme, Caractere, Chic, Parfait, Sweet Beige, Troublant, Caprice, Amarante, Natural, Almandine, Rose Quartz, Rouge Coco, Rouge Coco Shine, Glossimer, Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss, Le Crayon Levres, Rouge Double Intensite, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

For the last few seasons, Chanel has been the first to counter — and this fall is no exception. Fall is usually a big collection for the brand, and this one feels like a crowd-pleaser. Another source of joy: a surprising number of these products are permanent additions to the line.

Let's start with the eyeshadow quad,

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What They Wore: Le Metier Makeover

Le Metier de Beaute, Karla Sugar, Shaun Smith

Le Metier de Beaute has a new regional makeup artist for the south/southwest: Shaun Smith. On one of his recent trips through Dallas, I had the pleasure of sitting in his chair — and there were so many things I loved about his look that I wanted to share it.

I came in for my makeover, having just washed my

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MAC Nordstrom Anniversary (with Julie Verhoeven)

MAC, Nordstrom Anniversary, swatches, Julie Verhoeven, Smoky Eye Kits, Plum, Black, Creative Whim, Drawn to Drama, Moody, Purple Dash, Naked Lunch, Wedge, Carbon, Graphblack, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

MAC's collection for Nordstrom's anniversary sale includes several specially-priced sets in fantastic limited edition packaging. The art is the work of Julie Verhoeven (a fine artist/illustrator/designer whose commercial collaborations include H&M, Versace, Uniqlo, Mulberry, and a Lancome Juicy Tube called Pink Muse).

First up, two smoky eye kits (each $49.50). The eye

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Guest Swatcher: Deborah Lippmann Let’s Go Crazy

Deborah Lippmann, Let's Go Crazy, swatch, Nordstrom Anniversary, 2012

Tremendous thanks to the amazing AlexandraRC of Sparkly Vernis for this jawdropping swatch. It's Deborah Lippmann's Nordstrom anniversary exclusive: Let's Go Crazy, a sheer grape jelly with Lippmann's signature glitter bonanza. I spy red, green, blue, silver, and gold hexagonal glitter in two sizes. I prefer glitter polishes with a sheer base. If the base

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Burberry Sheer Luminous Fluid Foundation

Burberry, Sheer Luminous Fluid Foundation, swatches, Trench 1, Trench 2, Trench 3, Trench 4, Trench 5, Trench 6, Trench 7, Trench 8, Trench 9, Trench 10, Trench 11, Trench 12, Trench 13, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

Readers, I have never been so excited about a foundation. (And I never get excited about foundation.)

When I began swatching Burberry, I was determined to remain objective. But the more I swatch/test/try, the more deeply I fall in love with this brand.

Before we talk about their liquid foundation, let's talk about their Fresh Glow Primer (Fresh Glow Luminous

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Chanel Nordstrom Anniversary

Chanel, Nordstrom Anniversary, Fleur de Lotus, swatches, Rives, Riviere, Beige Clair, Roselin, Alize, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

I don't think Chanel ever goes on sale, but every year, during Nordstrom's anniversary event, the brand offers a small collection of exclusive products (if you're feeling nostalgic, here are the collections from 2011 and 2010).

Of course, jetsetters among us may have seen these products

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Nordstrom Anniversary Highlights

Nordstrom's anniversary sale officially begins July 20th (and ends on Sunday, August 5th, at midnight, Pacific Time). In the cosmetics department, this annual bonanza means special sets, jumbo sizes, and exclusive products. There's a bunch of stuff out there (click here to browse the whole cosmetics offering online), but I just wanted to highlight a

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Skin Series 4: Treatment – Anti-Aging Creams

Chanel skincare display

Now that we've addressed skin anatomy, the physiology of aging, and a few common conditions in adult skin, I think we're finally ready to start talking about the different treatments out there.

Our first

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NARS Tinted Moisturizer

NARS, Tinted Moisturizer, swatches, Finland, Alaska, St. Moritz, Annapurna, Cuba, Malaga, Seychelles, Martinique, Polynesia, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

This spring, NARS added a tinted moisturizer to their foundation lineup — and there was much rejoicing. NARS chiefly received accolades for its shade selection, which spans a diverse range of skintones. Less talked about (but equally intriguing) are the foundation's treatment properties. This tinted moisturizer is supposed to reduce discoloration and fade dark spots over time.

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MAC Breezy Blue

MAC, Chenman, Breezy Blue, swatches, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

I think I found one color match for my Paige Denim promotional polish: MAC's Breezy Blue, a limited edition color from their Chenman Love & Water collection ($16, still available on MAC's website).

It's not quite as deep as the Paige polish, but it's a

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Make Up For Ever Aqua Creams

Make Up For Ever, Makeup Forever, MUFE, Aqua Creams, swatches, 19, 23, 24, 25, 26, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

Make Up For Ever just added four shades to their Aqua Cream lineup — and the Aqua Creams are a pretty fantastic product. Designed for synchronized swimmers, they're wear-anywhere, waterproof, creaseproof colors for lids, cheeks, and/or lips. If I'm attending a summer wedding in Texas (sweltering), my go-to look is a wash of shade

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Dior Summer Mix

Dior, Summer Mix, 2012, swatches, 178 Cosmo, 158 Calypso, 118 Acapulco, 198 Lagoon, 542 Orange Pareo, 854 Rouge Croisiere, 664 Rose Bikini, lipgloss, nail polish, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar

Dior has a little "interstitial" collection out right now: Summer Mix. It's a happy, bright, juicy, glossy, jelly offering of four glosses ($28) and four polishes ($23).

Orange Pareo is a repromote (cross-promote?) from the summer Croisette collection. It's a sheer orange with orange and gold sparkles. Rouge

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