Summer collections, yay! Maybe my favourite season for makeup – the collections are usually super pretty, and I generally love the bronze goddess aesthetic and am not even mad if it’s repeated again and again. Yes, I admit it – pretty embossed powders in gorgeous packaging are my jam, and I’m not even ashamed of it. So let’s jump right in!

Chanel

Chanel Dans la lumiere de l'ete summer 2016 makeup collection
Chanel Dans la lumiere de l’ete promo and eyeshadow quad (picture courtesy of Chanel)

 

I’m a child of the 80s, and oh, I remember how entranced I was by that summer khaki/safari theme fashion designers endorsed heavily then. And look at Chanel and their visual! It’s enough to make me swoon. The collection is called Dans La Lumiere De L’Ete, and centres, of course, around bronzed skin, glossy lips, and bronzey smokey eyes. The stars of the show are clearly the eyeshadow palette (Creation Empreinte Du Desert), which features an interesting pop of khaki, and the Healthy Glow Multi Colour duo contour and blush duos in two shades. I wasn’t a fan of the original Healthy Glow powders, but these look interesting – for me, the real question is if you’re actually able to use them as blush and contour, or if the pan is too small for a regular blush and you end up with a muted, shimmery blush.

Though, in all honesty, thinking about the gorgeous bronzing powders and blushes from previous summer collections, this is a bit, well, … tame? Dare I say boring? The accompanying glosses are Gloss Aqua glosses, and come in a variety of six colours – all very glossy, some with shimmer, some without – and, knowing Chanel’s glosses, without a major colour saturation. Five new nailpolishes, of which only one is limited edition (Cavaliere), two Stylo Yeux Waterproof, brown (waterproof) mascara and done! Still a solid one, Chanel!

 

 

Dior

Dior Milky Dots makeup collection Summer 2016
Dior Milky Dots makeup collection (picture courtesy of Dior)

 

Milky dots. No, not dots in your milk! (Eeeeeek!) Milky dots!!!!!! Still no idea? Yeah, me neither. Well, there’re off-white (milky white?) dots on the packaging of Dior’s summer collection? Good enough. Sometimes I really marvel about how those collection names come to be – do they take Facebook tests like ‘find your unicorn name’? Anyways. Who doesn’t love a polka dot? Christian Dior loved them, I love them, you very likely like them too. So, crowd pleaser, right? No need to muddle things up with milky stuff and garbling about summery smoothies and good vibrations, Dior! Plus, whenever you dump your ginormous collections on us, I’m slightly overwhelmed.

There’re always two eyeshadow quints (blue/pink, think ‘I’m a Barbie Girl’, and sandy nudes, think ‘yawn’), a plethora of bronzers, glossy lipsticks, milky (:P) glosses and of course nailpolishes with some gimmicky tool. Please, don’t buy that stuff because of the dotting tool, pleeeeeeaaaaase?! You’ll get those everywhere, even at the drugstore. Heck, you can even use a bobby pin if you want to do a dotticure (nail polish addict lingo alert)! Okay, where was I? Bronzers. Diorskin Nude Air Glow Powder in four shades. I LOVE those. I have one from a summer collection a few years back, and it’s one of the best bronzer formulas I’ve ever tested. They get it just right – formula-wise and colour-wise (never orange!). Get one. Then there’re four new Dior Addict Lipsticks, the aforementioned Dior Addict Milky Tints (sorry, I’m too old and too jaded to get excited about six milky lipglosses), three nailpolish duos (coming with the dotting tool – beware, these are not fullsize polishes!), an additional eyeshadow palette (Eye Reviver) with six shades, mascara, loose powder, the works. What faintly excites me – liquid liner in jade green and lilac. But still – get the bronzer. Skip the rest.

 

 

Guerlain

Guerlain Terracotta collection summer 2016
Guerlain My Terracotta – Pause d’ete bronzing powder (picture courtesy of Guerlain)

 

Same procedure as every year, eh, Guerlain? And that’s not bad. Every year, regular like a clockwork, Guerlain churns out a summer collection that’s centred around their stunning bronzers – truly, that’s what Guerlain does best. No surprises here – the key piece is the gorgeous bronzer in wooden packaging that is both shimmery and quite dark (Pause d’ete bronzing powder, pictured above) – so snowwhite ladies, beware! The other bronzer in the line-up is designed for blondes and from the regular line, but with a fancy (not) red silicone sleeve. Really, give the limited edition Terracotta fragrance a sniff – it’s a cult favourite because it embodies that heady beachy summer feeling and sells out every summer. Otherwise, we get two new KissKiss lipsticks and various body oils, sunscreens, BB creams – but really, the bronzers and fragrance is where it’s at. Boring? Maybe. But the essence of the brand, nevertheless.

 

 

MAC

MAC Vibe Tribe Summer collection 2016
MAC Vibe Tribe Summer collection 2016

 

Mac always excels at the big summer collection thing. The last two or three years, we got amazing collections with stunning packaging and stunning products (Alluring Aquatics, remember?). This year, the whole thing (called Vibe Tribe) is a bit of a let-down with a lot of repromotes and packaging that feels meh to me, and screams cultural appropriation to others. I see the yellowed tupperware boxes from the 70s my mum hoards, others see a chic southwestern pattern. It’s aaaaaaaaall relative. As always, the collection is positively huge (hop over to Specktra to see the whole line-up), while the star product is certainly the ‘Gleamstones Powder’, a multi-colour product that can be used as a blush, bronzer, or highlight powder depending on your skintone. MAC also hopped on the trendy brown lip train and repromoted Hot Chocolate lipstick (about which I wrote recently here). There’ll be Patentpolishes instead of lipglosses, which always seem overly expensive for what they are to me, two eyeshadow quads (one consists nearly completely of permanent shades), blushes, brushes, bronzers (some solid ones), bags and a plethora of other stuff. The colour palette ranges from nude and bronzey with pops of orange and red. All in all I feel that it’s completely skippable and lacks in creativity.

 

 

NARS

NARS Summer Collection 2016
NARS Under Cover Summer Collection 2016 visual (picture courtesy of Nars)

 

Nars apparently did spent all their creative juices on the outer packaging of their summer collection (called ‘Under Cover’), got tired and just used a spring colour palette because they couldn’t be bothered. The boxes, designed by Konstantin Kakadias, really are adorable – imagine how great the products would have looked with that packaging! Well, they did include a new lip product, the Lip Cover, a liquid lipstick that comes in four colours and is supposed to be long-wearing, but not drying, so methinks it’ll be quite similar to the Estée Lauder ones that Astrid and I love. The finish isn’t satin or matte, though, but claims to be ‘luminous’. Then there’re fours Dual-Intensity Eyeshadow, Nars’s hybrid shadows, in pastel shades of aqua, mint and pink and brown. Two Dual-Instensity Blushes in tan pinks and peachy mauves. Everything is limited edition, perfectly nice, qood quality, fits nicely together as a cohesive collection and bores me to death. If threatened at gun-point to get something from the collection, it would be one of the blush duos, though. I’m always tempted by a nice ‘gel’-textured blush.

 

 

YSL

YSL Summer Makeup collection 2016
YSL Summer Makeup collection 2016 (picture courtesy of YSL)

 

Oh hai, there’s Cara casually sitting on a car-roof, in a romper, with heavy smokey eyes, in the desert, like you do. A friend recently told me she can’t buy makeup from the YSL range, because the visuals usually make her want to stab the display. Luckily, it’s not that bad this time, and there’re a few items that look downright appealing. I can even get behind the road trip theme (‘Savage Escape’ – let’s hope for Cara’s romper that it’s not too savage!). Just don’t wear it all together, at once, because it’ll make you look like a disco queen from the 80s.

We have some good-looking bronzing powders, a palette that pairs blues with nudes (blues with nudes is apparently a thing this summer), two liquid eyeshadows (skip them, the Armani ones are far superior), two rosy lipglosses, two nailpolishes and temporary tattoos. Like with Dior’s dotting tools, I feel you can those cheaper and better elsewhere – look at Miss Sophie’s, for example. Everything is limited edition, and I’ll have a look at the polishes. YSL has done stunning polishes for spring, and I’ve high hopes for the shimmery blue one, in Night Escape. Both have a textured ‘sand’ texture, btw. Not bad, YSL, not bad!

 

 

Estée Lauder

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Collection 2016
Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Collection 2016 (pic courtesy of Estée Lauder)

 

The original Bronze Goddess line. EL has done this forever, and all their summer collections tend to look alike, but I don’t even care. I’ve a soft spot for their summer collections, first because I love the Bronze Goddess fragrance that comes out every summer, and second because the Bronze Goddess visuals look like they sprung from the 80s every year, and I’ve a soft spot for that decade (I think I’v mentioned that in this post a few times already!). There’s always a really, really good product in there, and sometimes, a few gimmicky misses. This year, the collection is called Summer Glow, and well, I guess it delivers. Star of the show is the Summer Glow Multi-Palette, consisting of a highlighter, a blusher and a bronzer all in their famous ‘tribrid’ formula, combining liquid, powder and gel, like MAC’s Extra Dimension and Nars Dual-Intensity products. There’s also a liquid highlighter and a liquid bronzer, an eyeshadow palette (not worth it), and this year’s gimmick, a dual ended colour stick for cheeks and lips, consisting of a stick and a gloss. Bloggers agree that it’s quite nice, but I haven’t tested it yet. A nice and solid collection.

 

 

Conclusion (tl;dr)

I’m actually pretty disappointed by this year’s collections – while none is outright bad or completely snooze-worthy, none wows me either. Chanel wins for the prettiest visual, YSL for the best theme, Dior for the sheer mass of products and NARS for missing an opportunity. Stand-out products: Chanel’s eyeshadow quad, YSL nail polishes, Dior bronzing powders, Estée Lauder face palette, Guerlain Terracotta fragrance. I’m not totally inclined to open my wallet for any of it, and that must surely be a first. Hope it’s just because I haven’t had my coffee yet! What do you all think? Is there something I overlooked in my un-caffeinated state?!

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dorit
Beauty junkie with about 20 years of beauty experience under her belt. Editor, writer and twindly's PR heroine. Has an unbelievably large nail polish stash and a passion for skincare. Gets a kick out of pretty powders.

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