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making faces :: the passion of makeup lovers

for some of you, this will be the only part of this review you need to read:

le metier de beaute released an eyeshadow palette called "bauhaus" in december.

for those of you who want to know a little more, read on...

this is the second time in a few months that i've been tempted both by the content and inspiration of a le metier de beaute "kaleidoscope" 4-shadow palette. the first was "nouvelle vague", which i found did channel its cinematic muse. "bauhaus" is actually named after the art movement, not the band, and once again, le metier does convey the spirit of the original movement in colour and finish.

i actually think that bauhaus is a movement that lends itself exceptionally well to interpretation through cosmetics. much like the contemporaneous art deco movement, bauhaus was focused on functional art- the name itself implies an architectural focus [although the proper bauhaus school didn't offer courses in architecture the late 1920s- almost a decade after it was established.

bauhaus artists and artisans applied their style to everyday objects, bringing beauty and a modern sensibility to things the mundane. born out of the laboratory of creativity that was weimar germany, these new artists helped to transform art from something that resided on the walls of galleries to something that lived in the homes of real people. the focus was securely on the contemporary, the futuristic, the new, rather than reflecting back on times which many felt had lead the world on a horrendously destructive path.

for their take on "bauhaus", le metier de beaute does capture the modernism of the inter-war period, through heavily metallic finishes- often a hallmark of period art- in a combination of sombre shades.

INDIVIDUAL SWATCHES, COMBINATIONS AND "IN ACTION" SHOTS AFTER THE BREAK...



first up is a burnished brass-bronze colour called "axiom". it's intensely pigmented and finish similar to gold leaf, not full-on frosty, but with an almost pearly sheen. i'll apologise up front for the fact that i didn't do comparison swatches with any other shades for this post- i'll happily do them on request if there are specific comparisons you'd like to see- because my skin was feeling exceptionally sensitive the day i swatched the palette, so i didn't want to push my luck. honestly, though, i don't have anything that compares to this shade. it's browner than any gold shades. it's more bronze than a flat brown. but its warmer and more golden than other bronze colours. it packs a LOT of colour, so if you want something lighter, you might want to apply it with a fluffier brush and layer until you get the effect that you want.

axiom :: natural light

second, we have a shimmering silver called "graphic". and what a silver. i tend to avoid silver shadows, because i find that they all generally look alike and because mac's "platinum" pigment is an absolutely perfect metallic silver to which most shadows can't compare anyway. but shades like "graphic" in this palette are making me realise that silver can have a lot of nuance. in fact, i think this might be my very favourite of the four shades here.

graphic :: natural light
what's amazing is that it really does remind me of aging silver-gilt pieces i've seen from the 1920s. it has an antique quality to it, like a metal that's been allowed to oxidise just a little. it even has a hint of pink for depth. the photos i took of this absolutely do not do it justice, but despite many efforts, i couldn't capture its ephemeral beauty. rouge bunny rouge "nightwind sailing" is somewhat similar, but darker and more sparkly.

"graphic" is light enough to work as a highlight in the inner corner of the eye, but it's a bit heavy to use as a brow shade. it works well on the lid, giving a brightened look to tired eyes.

the third shade, "crucible", is tricky to describe. it's warmer than what most people call "cranberry", but it's pinker/ redder than brown. i'd say "oxblood", but it's not that dark. although it's a shade that a lot of people might struggle with, it works exceptionally well with its neighbours, who keep it from giving the  red eye effect that turns people off most of these shades. this one is very intense, but it does tend to blend out fairly easily. if you want to maintain its integrity, use a light hand when blending. i love it as a crease shade, personally.

crucible :: natural light
i have a lot of plum colours, but none really approach this one- mac star violet is more purple, le metier fig is darker and more purple. not a lot of companies come up with shades like this because they can be tricky to wear, but this one just works.

finally, we have "genre", a dark graphite grey with silver shimmer woven through. the colour payoff is excellent, as it is with every shade, although i felt that this is the one colour that was easier to duplicate. it's beautiful, but it is the sort of shade that a lot of companies have come out with. that said, it's a gorgeous complement to the other colours and the sort of workhorse shade that goes with a lot of different looks. softer than a pure black, it's a wonderful, smoky kind of colour that can be combined with virtually anything.

genre :: natural light
because the other shades in "bauhaus" are so damn pigmented, it doesn't stand out as a particularly dark colour when used with them, but it is a great option for deepening the outer corners and crease, or for blending into the lash line to give a softer lined effect.

the quality of the shadows in "bauhaus" is staggering. they're all beautiful, nuanced, rich in pigment and a dream to work with. even by le metier standards, they're high quality. while kaleidoscopes cost a pretty penny [ten thousand of them, actually], it's worth mentioning that these aren't typical palettes, but four full-size le metier de beaute shadows. if i had to make one tiny criticism, it would be that the shades in this particular kaleidoscope can seem a bit heavy together. nonetheless, i've been enjoying wearing the whole she-bang, so it's hardly impossible.

le metier de beaute have become known for what they call their "couche de couleurs" technique, which involves layering shades one over the other to create a prismatic, shifting overall shade. so let's have some fun, shall we?

here's all four colours layered, creating a stunning brown-bronze with a metallic patina. although le metier usually recommends layering kaleidoscopes from top to bottom, i found this one really sings if you layer the other shades and then pat "graphic" lightly on top.

bauhaus :: all four shades : natural light
but why stop there? how about combining the two warm shades and the two cooler silver-grey shades? "axiom" and "crucible" form an impossibly rich, velvety red-brown. "graphic" and "genre" meanwhile are a little less original together, but still form a sparkly pewter-silver that catches the light in a magical fashion.

bauhaus :: axiom + crucible :: graphic + genre :: natural light
or how about going in order? here's "axiom" with "graphic" layered on top. this is jaw-droppingly beautiful in person, because you can see the individual shades, but you also get a deep platinum and mink effect that is almost unbelievably beautiful. meanwhile "crucible" and "genre" form a gorgeous shimmering plum colour that just makes my heart race.

bauhaus :: axiom + graphic :: crucible + genre :: natural light
or, we could match the top and bottom and the two middle shades. "axiom" and "genre" form a dark, cool ash-taupe- almost a "fugly" kind of shade- while "graphic" and "crucible" form a lighter, shimmery sugar plum fairy shade.

bauhaus :: axiom + genre :: crucible + graphic :: natural light
the possibilities are endless.

personally, my favourite method with le metier shadows is to use them in such a way that they can be seen on their own, but blending them to create a stunning continuum of colour over the lid and into the crease, so that you get the best of both worlds.

at the same time that i picked up "bauhaus" i also got another le metier lipstick in "castelo". it's a soft brown-plum base with a lot of pink shimmer. although it looks intense in the bullet, it's actually a fairly soft, everyday shade. it's a bit drier than other le metier shades i've tried, but it isn't drying.

castelo :: natural light
it bears a certain similarity to chanel's "baroque", although it's cooler and more muted. think of it as a great shade that has a certain vampy appeal, but still works in an office setting. like showing a hint of leg and being able to get away with it.

l to r :: castelo, chanel baroque :: natural light

so here they both are in action...

the base ::
gosh anti-aging velvet touch primer
becca luminous skin colour "porcelain"
diorskin nude hydrating concealer "010"
lush colour supplement "jackie oates"
mac paint pot "painterly"
mac fluidline brow "redhead" [i'm still finding that this is too warm for my brow colour, but i love the effect of it- adding that bit of depth and emphasis without being too dramatic.]

the eyes ::
lmdb e/s "axiom" [golden bronze brown]*
lmdb e/s "graphic" [tarnished silver]*
lmdb e/s "crucible" [browned berry]*
lmdb e/s "genre" [charcoal with shimmer]*
mac e/s "creamy bisque" [cool ivory highlight]*
stila eye liner "lionfish" [bronze-brown]
chanel inimitable intense mascara

the cheeks ::
nars blush "amour" [soft pinkish red]

the lips ::
lmdb l/s "castelo" [plum brown with pink shimmer]

*suggested alternates :: creamy bisque = mac dazzlelight [more shimmer, warmer]

in case you're wondering, i used axiom on the centre and outer part of my lids, graphic on the inner third [blended into axiom a little], crucible in the crease and genre in the outer "v" and lightly along the outer part of my crease to create more definition.

le metier de beaute is available through zuneta, which is where i purchased both "bauhaus" and "castelo". "bauhaus" is currently sold out on the zuneta web site, but is still available through neiman marcus.

the palette is limited edition and it's always a toss-up how long they're available for. i'd recommend that if you're interested, you should get it sooner rather than later, as this one seems to be highly in demand.




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