One of my favorite purchases in recent months is a limited edition piece from this year's NARS holiday collection, the Virtual Domination Cheek Palette. It is a carefully curated palette of one highlighter, three blushes and one bronzing powder that will make any blush fiend swoon. The packaging and design is chic and substantial, and it's a nice change from NARS' usual rubbery, matte black option.
Clockwise from top left: Miss Liberty, Deep Throat, Laguna, Final Cut, Sex Fantasy
NARS Virtual Domination Cheek Palette ($65) includes:
:: Miss Liberty - a fleshy peach highlighter with silver micro-glitter
:: Deep Throat - a pinky coral with golden shimmer
:: Final Cut (LE) - a matte, warm peachy coral
:: Sex Fantasy (LE) - a matte, very cool-toned baby pink
:: Laguna - their cult-classic medium-toned bronzing powder with soft golden shimmer flecks
The highlighter and blushes are just under full-size each (0.15 oz versus 0.16 oz single blush), while the bronzing powder contains more product than its full-size counterpart (0.35 oz versus 0.28 oz single bronzing powders). Considering a single blush will set you back $30, paying just over the cost of two blushes for this palette is a fantastic deal.
In general, the blushes in this palette can tend to be a bit powdery, which is unlike any of the NARS single blushes I own. However, I still find them to be pigmented, blendable and long-wearing. In this palette, Laguna is a bit less pigmented than the one I own in the Orgasm/Laguna duo, but it's buildable and has more or less the same effect on the skin.
L to R: Miss Liberty, Deep Throat, Final Cut, Sex Fantasy and Laguna
While I already knew I liked Laguna bronzer and figured I would enjoy Deep Throat and Final Cut blushes as well, as the shades are right up my alley, I was pleasantly surprised by how wearable Sex Fantasy was on my warm complexion, and by how much I didn't mind the glitter from Miss Liberty (dare I say I actually liked it?). I've reached for Miss Liberty a lot lately, and I find that the glitter sets it apart from my other highlighters, which tend to be more shimmery or sheen-y, and it makes Miss Liberty a great option for when I want a more dramatic look. And let's be honest here - who doesn't love a bit of glitter every now and again?
Wearing Laguna bronzer, Final Cut blush and Miss Liberty highlighter
While the overall quality of the powders in this palette may be ever so slightly subpar to their single counterparts, I certainly would not classify any of them as duds. They still apply beautifully on the skin, and the limited edition packaging and compilation of shades cannot be beat. Any makeup lover would be thrilled to find this wrapped under the tree this holiday season.