A high-end skincare and makeup line under the Kosé umbrella of brands, Cosme Decorte’s revamped AQ range has a distinctive touch of luxe: Many of the products not only contain moisturising and emollient agents to nourish and protect the skin, they are also infused with ‘gold colloid powder’ – solid gold reduced to nano-particle size after dissolving in a chemical solution of aqua regia (Latin for ‘royal water’). Dispersed in the AQ cosmetics, this gold colloid powder gives the products a delicate sparkle. The technology behind this ingredient intrigues me and knowing that I’m paying for gold in a refined form surely cushions the sticker shock. ;)
This premium line can be likened to that of Clé de Peau Beauté. As with the latter, the product prices might raise eyebrows but these brands indubitably have a faithful following. As proof of this, I learnt that several of the ladies who attended the Cosme Decorte AQ workshop have been long-time customers of the brand.
Here are my thoughts on some of the makeup lovelies I saw and played with at the workshop.
This makeup base has a smooth and emollient feel. It blends easily into the skin and has an immediate brightening effect. I like that it doesn’t leave a whitish cast on the face.
This foundation has a wonderful texture and feels really good on the skin – despite the word ‘cream’ in its name, it actually has a light consistency that is a cross between a gel and a buttery cream. A little goes a very long way and I appreciate how it has buildable coverage. I asked for its price immediately because I really liked its smooth and satiny finish.
The concealer, on the other hand, is too heavy for my liking. I’d say a smidgeon of a smidgeon is all you need! It was ok as an undereye concealer (it evened out my skin tone there but couldn’t take away my bag shadows); however, I’d say it works best as a blemish concealer. It was nice as a shadow base too, when I couldn’t find any eyeshadow primer while playing with the eye colours.
- AQ Modeling Nuancer (S$68)
Smooth and blendable, these light creams easily meld into the AQ Cream Foundation Supreme to contour and highlight the features. Thanks to their subtle quality, they don’t impart the harsh demarcated lines that powdered contouring/sculpting versions sometimes do.
- AQ Face Powder N (S$183)
This powder impressed me with its incredibly soft texture. ‘Finely-milled’ doesn’t even begin to describe its softness – imagine a gossamer-light powder and mill it a few more times; then you’ll understand what I mean. Coloured a lovely lilac, this supremely fine powder adds radiance and smoothness to the complexion.
- AQ Shadow Supreme (S$89)
The stars of the collection, these eye shadow palettes stole my heart with their complementary colour combinations and pretty shimmer. Their glimmering hues and blendability were wonderful to work with and I loved how well they showed up over the concealer (my shadow base during the makeup play time). None of them have gritty sparkle (hurray), although a couple do have a slight chalkiness (sigh). In all though, they are very wearable and I already have naughty plans to purchase one or two. ;)
- AQ Face Color N (S$96)
The gold colloid powder is the most evident in these blush beauties. I like their smooth touch but was only able to use one (the clean pink) on my face. It applied subtly – great for people who love just a hint of healthy colour on their cheeks.
- AQ Rouge Supreme (S$85)
I remember baulking at Cosme Decorte’s lipstick prices about a decade ago but such elevated prices are par for the course now with high-end brands. According to Clarence Lee who has used this on shoots, these lipsticks do not leave a white residue along the inner lip, as do most lip products. I only had a chance to try one at the workshop – the silky lippy was fairly moist and comfortable on my lips but it didn’t exactly wow me.
I learnt from Iris that the letters ‘AQ’ stand for ‘Absolute Quality’. True enough, the luxurious – almost opulent – iridescent white/shiny gold packaging not only reflects the brand’s modern and elegant beauty, it also embodies its superior quality. I particularly like how the stylised lines and curves form a floral image – can you see the rose bloom? @–.’—