Sunday, April 17, 2016

Giorgio Armani Beauty Sepia Highlighting Palette for Spring/Summer 2016

Giorgio Armani Beauty recently introduced Sepia, the new Spring/Summer 2016 collection, inspired by the sepia photographs of the past. Its highlighting and contouring palette, lipstick, and nail polish shades revisit warm, earthy tones said to be suited to all skin types.

The beautiful multi-purpose palette in the collection is called Sepia Highlighting Palette ($88). The Sepia Palette, featuring a "highlighting-contouring powder," envelops the skin in a veil of subtle light and smooths out imperfections, while delivering the signature Armani glow in a texture that is silky smooth, light, and soft. The powder boosts the adherence of the pigments and brightens the complexion with a soft, sepia touch.

Being an Armani devotee, I had to have it. It arrived a few days ago, and I was able to get photographs in full sun. We are having lovely weather.

How does Armani suggest you use it? For a natural look, brush over the palette to blend both shades together. Apply over the face with downward strokes for a natural glow with an allover application. For a more sculpted look, use each shade to contour features. Use the lighter shade on upper cheekbones, brow bone, and along the nose, and the deeper shade along the nose, jawline, and under cheekbones. The latter is almost impossible to do, given the thin stripes of the darker shade. So, I'm using it as a bronzer built for blondes (or those with fair skin), and it's perfect!

I took swatch photos in full afternoon sun. I applied the powder fairly heavily with a sponge-tipped applicator, blending the two shades together. I selected two photos to show you. The first is posed in front of a Japanese maple, which is showing its lovely sepia color before it turns red.

This powder is not sparkly, despite the way the sun shines on my arm. I'd call the finish silky (maybe lustrous), with a very slight sheen. It is a great shade to wear during the day. I like to apply it with a blush or bronzer brush, using the "double-three" method, sweeping it over my temples, across the lower part of my cheekbones, down the hairline, and across the outer third of my jaw line on each side of my face. It looks so natural on me because it is light.

Here is a second photo, a close-up taken in front of a holly tree. My arm isn't as shiny because I held it at a different angle to the sun. This is probably the more true of the two photos of the same swatch.

I am not sure why Giorgio Armani Beauty chose to call this powder a highlighter and refer to it for contouring. I can use it for contouring, but I think it will disappear as a contouring shade on anyone with a medium or dark complexion. Naturally, the shade darkens if you can manage to get more of the sepia shade on your applicator, perhaps by running it down the center of the palette from top to bottom. If you do have a medium or dark complexion and try it, I'd love to know if it looks like a highlighting shade. It might.

I have to qualify my recommendation for the Sepia Palette. It's beautiful, particularly for those with fair skin. If you are darker, I suggest you try before you buy.

Top photos courtesy of Giorgio Armani Beauty; other photos by Best Things in Beauty

14 comments:

Anne said...

This is beautiful but I'm not sure it would make enough of a difference on my skin to justify the price.

Anonymous said...

Hi Charleston Girl!! This is a beautiful product and, the model looks gorgeous in the image. I noticed on the Saks website they have many new products for the face especially blushes and bronzes for pre-sale. I wonder if there's going to be 1 more collection before Fall? I really like the Sepia color lipstick the model is wearing but, that color unfortunately is not flattering on me. Thank you for this review, I enjoyed reading it very much!! Xo. Wendy.

Anonymous said...

Hi CG-Does this powder have an overspray on it?

Charleston Girl said...

Anonymous, there appears to be no overspray.

Charleston Girl said...

Wendy, you sent me off to Saks online. Were they Armani pre-sales or other brands? Thanks!

Anna R said...

Thank you for the lovely review. The powder design is cool and unique but to be able to contour the darker shade needs to be large enough to grab in the pan! Are we supposed to use a q-tip?!? Seriously it looks lovely but I think they made it difficult to use as a highlighter and contour. I will check it out in person to see how it looks on my skin tone.

Victoria Lee said...

I like your blog! Great post, I just recently tried a similar product that I received for free from perfumora.com. Will buy this one next time!

Cheryl G. said...

I'm so looking forward to all of your new product reviews...I need to buy something!

Charleston Girl said...

Cheryl, you've come to the right place. :)

Charleston Girl said...

Thank you, Victoria!

Charleston Girl said...

Anna, I got a chuckle out of your Q-tip line! Spot on.

Rebekah said...

CG, did you get a look at the Cheek Fabric blush #100 from that collection? I'm dying to see it or even read a description LOL! I can't seem to find a swatch anywhere! This palette looks gorgeous, but having bought the shimmering loose powder from Dior Milky Dots collection, I'm not sure if I need both? It's a very subtle bronze as well...oh how I long for an Armani counter nearby! I hope your week is going well so far, and as always thank you for all you do!

Charleston Girl said...


Thank you, Rebekah!

That Sun Fabric is a bronzer. I have not purchased it. If you aren't stocked up on bronzers, I'm sure you (and I) would love #100. I have a few too many bronzers right now, but I can always make room for Armani.

Rebekah said...

I have seen the bronzer and it is beautiful, alas I passed for the exact reason you stated lol! I just have too many bronzers right now...and I just ended up with another because I ordered the Dior shimmering loose powder from the Milky Dots collection and it ended up being a bronzer on me as well (albeit a gorgeous one!). With this recent Sepia collection, GA has released a limited edition shade of Cheek Fabric blush in #100 also (it's now available on Barneys, Nordstrom, NM) but no swatches are popping up! It looks totally different from site to site and it's making me crazy lol! I'll keep my eyes peeled...I may end up ordering it out of sheer curiosity because I love the other Cheek Fabric shades I have so much! Hope you had a great Wednesday, CG! Looking forward to what you have in store for us next!