Sunday, August 10, 2014

Perma Faves: Paul & Joe Cheek Color (in #4 Cinema) Swatches + Comparisons

Some things you put in your makeup collection and think 'damn, I'm never gonna use it again' (looking at you, ugly NYC blush), but other products you use once and immediately elevate to holy grail status. Keep reading for one of my favorite blushes.

If you're unfamiliar, Paul & Joe is a fashion label that also produces some makeup, under the name Paul & Joe Beaute. Their products are more high-end than not, but they're some of the cutest things on the market. Black, sleek packaging? Why would you ever want NARS when you can have the adorable, vintage P&J look.

Just look at the sheer adorableness.

One of the advantages of P&J is that they sell packaging separately, for certain products. Case in point: the product I'm reviewing is a $18 blush--but the compact was sold separately, for $10. So depending how you look at it, my blush either cost a reasonable $18, or a higher $28.

If you didn't catch it from the title, I'm reviewing P&J's Cheek Color (which is labeled as a 'refill') in #4, Cinema. The compact I have is appropriately called Birds Nest. I bought mine off of, but you can easily google search for other websites.

Even the boxes are pretty. The golden parts are shiny. That's fancy for cardboard.

So first thing's first, I have to address the whole 'compact sold separately' idea. I love it.

1. It makes the actual product much cheaper. The blush comes in its own little plastic housing that closes securely. You don't need the compact to use or move it around. In fact, the blush has a magnetic bottom so slap it into your Z-Palette without paying for an unused compact. It's great!

2. Customization! They sell a handful of different compacts, so you can easily pick and choose which you like most. I like birds. Mine has a birds nest. Like cats? Get a fucking cat!

3. Mix and match. P&J's Eye Color Trio Refills ($35) also fit in the same compact, so theoretically you can have a dozen products and just one compact to slap them into for when you want to look fancy.

Even the plastic container has a pretty design on it!

The blush (and I assume the eyeshadows) fits really securely in the compact. The whole bottom is a magnet, so once it snaps in you have to make an effort to pull it out. Even without the case, the actual plastic housing of the blush feel sturdy and long lasting, it's not going to shatter if you drop it or break if you squeeze it. The compact is made of a really strong cardboard and snaps shut with a really satisfying snap. Again, nice and secure. And cute.

It's a really nice and satisfying size. Well worth the $10 for the case.
And adding the brand on the end is a nice touch.

Another advantage for Z-Palette is the bottom of the product says everything you need to know. No need to stick tape on something so perfect and ruin the nice aesthetic.

And if you're Japanese, like the brand, I guess you'll enjoy the text.
The whole bottom is the magnet, too.

So I can gush about packaging and being cheap for ages, but now down to the actual product. I'm sure you want to see some well-deserved swatches now.

T-B: blended together, dark shade, light shade.
In person, the shades are a tad more orange-y than above.

This blush is nicely pigmented. If your foundation usual falls under 'ivory', like me, you might want to apply with a light hand. I get lazy and just use a big kabuki to blend out my blush--but you should skip that step and not make yourself look like a sexy clown. Unless that's the look you're going for, I suppose.

If you're determined, you can use the two colors separately to get two blushes, but mixing them gets you a nice peachy-coral that screams summer.

I will also point out this blush smells like flowers. I have a terrible sense of smell so I can't tell you which exact flower and subspecies it is, but it smells distinctly floral. It's not a perfume-y floral scent, but rather went-outside-and-smelled-a-bush scent. I don't smell any on my face, but if you're very sensitive to scented products, I'd say check out return policies. I think it adds to the cute, feminine feel of the product.

T-B: blended swatch, dark, light, Maybelline Master Glaze Blush Stick in Just Pinched Pink ($8), Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush in Warm ($11).

The colors of the P&J blush aren't exclusive, but I don't have exact dupes in my collection. The Physicians Formula Happy Booster is close, but a tad more pink.

Blush on my face.

It gives a really pretty pinky flush that looks pretty natural.

All-in-all, this blush is my permanent favorite. The color is great, the compact is adorable, and I feel like a rich princess every time I use it. Fantastic. I would highly recommend checking it out, if you have an extra $20 lying around.

The Paul & Joe Beaute Cheek Color Refill retails for 0.15oz for $18 ($120 an ounce), or for $28 ($186.66 an ounce), if you include the compact in the price. For comparison, Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush is 0.24oz for $11 ($45.83 an ounce), and a NARS Blush is 0.16oz for $30 ($187.5 an ounce). So even with the compact, the P&J is still a smidgen cheaper.


The kitten I'm currently petsitting wanted to help and get fur everywhere.

She's a perfect mascot for Paul & Joe, in regards to cuteness.
P&J even had a kitten-themed collection. Google it. It's adorable.

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