Celebrating splendour and simplicity, Les Ornements de Chanel is a brilliant rendition of this contrast.
Inspired by Gabrielle Chanel’s passion for ornaments, Lucia Pica has deftly interpreted Coco’s equal love for opulence and minimalism with this exquisite holiday offering steeped in house history.
“I wanted to express the idea of richness that particularly fits with the festive time of year—but a mastered and modern richness.”
—Lucia Pica, Chanel Global Creative Makeup and Colour Designer
Below are my picks from the collection:
The pearlescent powder catches the eye immediately with its embossed surface: the likeness of a vintage Chanel button that is at once a nostalgic nod to Coco couture, and a neoteric notion of festive finery.
Its straightforward—almost stark-sounding—name belies its beauty. It doesn’t have a harsh metallic finish; rather, the soft sparkles impart a candle-lit luminosity. It can turn frosty with a heavy hand, and I’ve found that just one swipe with the included brush offers the right amount of glow.
It’s a balanced colour, with subtle cool tones to ensure that it doesn’t tip too warm. On my skin, this pleasing peach somehow transforms into a neutral shade.
Rouge Allure Luminous Intense Lip Colour in Nº 857 Rouge Noble (S$56)
A tasteful take on the classic Rouge Allure click-case after the striking scarlet and muted matte iterations, this limited-edition packaging sees a shiny ebony tube edged with gold, the gilded embellishment immediately imbuing the piece with festive flair.
With my enduring penchant for deep wines and berries in lipsticks (salut, Rouge Noir!), I was invariably drawn to Rouge Noble. Described as a black cherry burgundy, it has a cool pink-red note that shows up more markedly when worn softly blended out. Added layers deepen the colour, leaving a lovely lustre at the same time. It doesn’t slip off easily but can feather a little at the edges after some wear.
The highlighter might be breath-taking but the pièce de résistance of this Christmas collection is the eyeshadow palette which is embossed with the same ornamental motif.
It comprises complementary earth-tone colours which the brand describes as a gunmetal khaki, a soft peach, a bronzy khaki and a chocolate brown.
The first is a dark khaki with an overt olive tone that I love on the lid. It is pigmented on its own but I like using it over a dark brown base for extra depth.
The bronze khaki looks like an antique gold with a hint of olive; its subdued and smooth nature allowing it to blend seamlessly into the olive brown, offering a natural gradation.
The cool cocoa defines effortlessly and can be intensified to create a stronger contrast to the other eyeshadows.
The peach might seem a tad too shimmery as an all-over shade but the colour somehow diffuses easily on the eye, giving a gentle twinkly effect.
All four shades have a plush touch, their silky texture evident in their even finish.
The gold and olive accents set this eyeshadow quad apart from similar-looking palettes, and while the harmonised hues might seem somewhat warm at first glance, they translate into neutral notes on me—someone who looks better in cool-toned colours.
Look closely at the pans and you will see a veil of rainbow iridescence…almost-indiscernible on the eye but no doubt quietly adding dimension to the colours.
The curious thing I’ve noticed about these eyeshadows is their softness that doesn’t kick up excess powder. They behave almost like a cream product, and have a cohesion that lends a melding quality.
Here are swatches of the three products mentioned above.
And here I am, wearing the colours. :)
Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Nº 715 Deepness (S$40)
Deepness speaks for itself with its pigmented appearance.
It looks like a black at first glance but has a dark jade undertone that shows up at certain angles.
Suspended within the rich gunmetal green liquid are multicoloured micro-sparkles that reveal themselves in the sunlight.
Inspired by the Coromandel lacquer screens that Gabrielle Chanel loved, the hidden surprise is perhaps an allusion to the pearlised inlays that sometimes formed this type of Chinese lacquerware.
It applies fairly evenly—two coats offer adequate opacity—and lasts three to four days on my nails.
This limited-edition collection can be found at the Chanel Beauty counters and boutiques in Singapore.
The Christmas decorations aren’t up at the stores yet, but this year’s Chanel holiday gift wrapping is already available.
Duo de Camélias Illuminating Powder Duo (S$103)
PS: There’s also a dual-pan holiday highlighter (golden beige/pearly platinum) that’s a boutique exclusive, and though the powder itself looks understated in the compact, its kaleidoscopic shimmer certainly stole my heart.
I’ll probably purchase it soon, and will review it when I do!