Gigi here!I am most grateful to Tantejoan for the extraordinary review which she once again penned in my absence. The woman is an enigma—the epitome of charm, style, and grace, Joan is also a stunningly beautiful, cornflower blue-eyed perfect fusion of Shakespeare, Dostoyevsky, Woody Allen, Robin Williams, and Seinfeld. She is now romping in the ocean with sea shells and men at her feet (I suspect more of the latter) . . .
Joan was correct; I spent time with Conan. My favorite part was the ability to watch as he was prepped for the show. And what brand was used? “The” brand—Max Factor, named after a Polish-born immigrant who created makeup himself for actors performing for the Russian nobles, entertainers at the 1904 World’s Fair, and then for movie stars in 1914. He learned to make it long-lasting, free of flakes and creases. Thus began a legendary line of products, many of which have no equal.
Conan sat as his favorite shades were used. First came concealer under his eyes in “Cyanotic Celebration.” Cheekbones were contoured with “Ashes to Ashes,” a grey-indigo blush. A touch of a repugnant purple named “Love That Livid” was added to his lips, followed by the famous pancake foundation in “Snowflake.” To set the makeup for hot studio lights, he was dusted with loose powder in “D.O.A.” When the makeup artists turned toward me, I tried to run, but I was outnumbered. What to do?
I breathed a huge sigh of relief. In their hands I saw products I love, including their “2000 Calorie Mascara” and “MAXeye Shadows.” Unfortunately, one shadow palette was “Queen Bee” (blinding yellow, vibrant orange and deep lime green). Were Max himself to climb out of his tomb and beg me to wear it, I would refuse. Nor would I permit my dog to leave the house with these shadows on her ecru fur. Despite the fact that these palettes have garnered awards from beauty magazines, always remember: Much like the armed forces, you are one of the few, the wise, the Megheads! You do not fall for slogans and promises.
One artist began to try to apply the same foundation and lip color as Conan sported; I said in my most charming voice, “Oh, surely you jest.” She dismissed me until I put my hand in my hoodie as if I carried a gun and said, “Go ahead—make my day.” Point taken. From that time on, I chose all of my own products and gravitated toward trios of more natural colors.
Ah, I digress. My focus was actually on the new Vivid Impact Lipstick. This has received a lot of positive press, but I tell it as I see it. I was drawn to it because this line has hues that are simply beautiful, utterly feminine, and daringly “edgy.” I chose a matte shade called “Vegas, Baby.” It is a muted merge of mauve and taupe, a lipstick that most women could wear. Artists began with a natural hair lip brush to outline and keep color in place (a lipliner and/or primer will also do the job). Warning, Will Robinson: Don’t create a new mouth shape unless it is Halloween! Work with what you have; if need be, extend your lines just slightly beyond their natural ones. You don’t want your pout to appear as if it has been inflated by Helium gone wrong.
The formula glides on smoothly and is delightfully comforting. There is no heavy, waxy scent. Vivid? Oh, heirs of Max Factor, you are doing him wrong. It imparts a gentle, delicate look, not a dramatic appearance of any sort. How long does it last? Just an hour or two if you sit still and do not move, breathe, blink, talk, eat, or drink (okay, so I exaggerate here to make a point). A primer doesn’t add much staying power. I was stunned and dismayed. The results were the same no matter how many times I tried. Trials with other colors in this line replicated my findings.
Procter and Gamble now owns Max Factor (along with most of the universe) and will begin pulling products from shelves in 2010. Stock up on your favorites, but lose this lipstick, please. Did you hear a noise? That’s Max himself turning over in his grave because he, too, is disappointed.
Anyone else less then pleased with Max Factor Vivid Impact Lipcolor or am I missing something here? I mean, Conan is late night!