Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Dolce & Gabbana Passion Duo Gloss Fusion Lipstick - My Latest Selections

I really didn't want to fall in love with a new lipstick - much less one from a line that I can't buy in the DC area or one that's a little pricey. I did fall in love, though, the moment my Saks Fifth Avenue order arrived last fall with four of Dolce & Gabbana's Passion Duo Gloss Fusion Lipsticks ($34). The description online reads like marketing hype on steroids.

A collision of rich cream color and satin gloss in a thrilling encounter of impeccable contrast, in a way that no one else has done before. Resplendent with contrasting texture, it offers a layer of rich, creamy lip color elevated by a playful burst of gloss. Luxuriant cream bullet and smooth gloss prove the ultimate partners in crime; a collision of two powerful forces in an explosion of vibrancy and excellence.

I was originally intrigued with the inner core design because I like Estée Lauder's Pure Color Sensuous Rouge LipColors very much. When I had seen in WWD that Dolce & Gabbana would be launching a lipstick with a similar concept, I felt the lure. Take two elements I value - color combined with magnificent, hydrating shine - and combine them into one lip color. It's genius. There was no question. I had to try Passion Duo Gloss Fusion Lipstick. My first four selections were achingly beautiful.

I recently returned to Saks online to order more and agonized over the colors I would order. I love having options - there are 26 shades - but those online representations aren't the most helpful for determining the actual "live and in-person" colors. So, I relied on my instincts and selected four new ones. I fully expected the shades to be sheer and shiny, like the first four I had purchased. I was shocked at the intensity of the color of three of the four.

Here are my new colors: Exotic, Fatale, Natural, and Vivid, shown from left to right in my photo above. I swatched in the same order, top to bottom, on my arm.

I think I must have accidentally hit some filter or setting on my camera (you won't see those psychedelic photos). I usually set it for portrait (close-up) mode, but I leave everything else on "auto-pilot." The colors on my arm were so vivid, they looked otherworldly. I went outside yesterday for a do-over, and sure enough, some weird setting had been applied on my first set of swatch photos.

Here are how the lipsticks really look - vivid, but not otherworldly. My photos were taken in full, late-afternoon sunshine. With the exception of Natural (the sheer peach-toned nude third down), these Passion Duo Gloss Fusion Lipsticks are seriously saturated. They aren't what I expected after the first four I purchased last fall, and if I had been selecting the shades in person, I would not have selected three of these four. I'm not really sure I would have selected the fourth (Natural).

Exotic and Fatale, at the top, of my arm are too dark and bright for my face - in my opinion. The fuchsia Exotic is wearable, but it's terribly saturated and bright. The red Fatale is totally outside my comfort zone. If you like red lipstick, though, it's a beautiful true red.

The Natural? It's a nice nude shade on the lips - my lips contribute the rose to make the shade look fairly normal. The rose-toned brown, Vivid, is pretty. Like the two at the top of my arm, it is extremely saturated in color, so I have to apply it with a light hand - or give it to a friend. It looks like "late autumn" on my lips - very rusty.

This turn of events - from sheer and shiny to saturated and shiny - was a surprise to me. It left me wondering if customers had complained that the first batch was too sheer. The Dolce & Gabbana customer would, I suspect, be looking for glamour with an edge.

What do you think of these shades? If you like shiny saturated lipsticks, they should appeal to you. I'm disappointed. If they had been the first four I ordered, I would not have gone back for more.

Update: You can see more at The Non-Blonde.

Photo at top courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue; other photos by Best Things in Beauty


Becca @ The Beauty Sample said...

These are gorgeous, but honestly I don't think I'm quite ready to wear something so pigmented. These babies are BRIGHT!! I am still working my way up from tinted lip balms :P

Mary Ann said...

I like the Exotic, bought Magic last yr, it is a brownish red. These are very long wearing. Got an email from Saks today, titled early fall savings, 10%off. Will try on cosmetics, every little bit helps!

lizzybee said...

These look so beautiful- I am very tempted!! Thank you, Charlestongirl, for this today ... xoxo Beth in Pgh ;-)

Unknown said...

Those look so incredibly pigmented but with a good deal of shine. I will have to check these out, I haven't heard amuch about these lipsticks!

Dlori said...

These are very bright. For $34, and from D&G, I am very surprised that they would make these shades part of their collection. They remind me of some of the MAC lipsticks and while I do love MAC, they're geared more for the younger woman. While bright and very color saturated, they are pretty if one feels comfortable wearing such loud colors. Personally, I like the fuschia and possibly the red, at least on your wrist. But I wouldn't spend $34 on them. If I were you, I would return them to SAKS. It's a shame to spend so much money on lipsticks you'll never ear. Better to spend the money on the gorgeous Chantecaille lipsticks, such as sunrise, and the new fall colors to come.

kleimanlaw at aol dot com

Jo said...

You probably would have liked Delight and Devotion better. I would return the ones you don't like.

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Becca,


Charlestongirl said...

Argh, Mary Ann! Is the 10% off on cosmetics? They usually exclude them these days.

Charlestongirl said...

Hope you like, Beth!

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Anda,

I think it's because the D&G beauty brand is sold in so few places.

Charlestongirl said...

Yep, Dlori, not worth the money to me, but my first batch was.

Charlestongirl said...

I have and love those two, Jo. I wish they would indicate on their lists what's sheer and what's not.

I almost never return makeup I choose. They didn't make me buy it. They didn't mislead me in the promotion. So, why should they suffer a loss? I just blew it.

Elizabeth said...

Charlestongirl, thanks for the swatches - Exotic looks just up my alley! Sorry that they didn't work out for you,though.

I know that you don't like returning makeup, as you told Jo - but don't you think the poor swatch photos on the Saks website contributed to your mistake?

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Elizabeth,

Probably, but most online swatches are terrible. I am OK with the purchase. I seldom go wrong. Overall, the pluses make up for the minuses. :)