Friday, July 27, 2012

Review: Chanel Illusion d'Ombre in Rivière from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

Like the rest of the Chanel products offered by Nordstrom for their Anniversary Sale, Rivière was originally sold exclusively in Asia. It was enthusiastically reviewed on Café Makeup and The Non-Blonde, so I made a beeline to the sale to buy it.

Rivière is a beautiful minty blue-green shade. It's silvery-shimmery with a very pearly finish. I know that women of a certain age are supposed to be careful about pearly finishes and totally avoid glitter, but I think a little bling close to the lashes or a light wash on the lid is appropriate, and the good news is that with this creme/gel formula, the pearliness stays put. It doesn't go all Urban Decay and wander off, only to end up highlighting my crinkles.

The texture is a very fluffy gel//creme, unique to Chanel, which can be applied as a shadow, a liner, or a liner that is blended out for a beautiful smoky eye.

The little pot comes with a small synthetic brush, so you have the option of using the brush or applying the shadow with your fingers.

The bottom of the pot and the little brush
Staying power is good; I use concealer as my eyeshadow base, and the Illusion d'Ombre shadows last all day on me.

Chanel Rivière swatched heavily on my inner arm. Please forgive the terrible lighting! The weather hasn't been cooperative this week, so I had to take the picture indoors on a cloudy day.

My reaction to this color? Definitely mixed. I love the idea of a blue-green color; it's a nice change from my usual beiges, and I find that teal eyeshadow brings out the green in my hazel eyes.

But I find this shade almost magically impossible to apply evenly. Rivière is much more pastel than the Illusions d'Ombres I've tried, and I'm finding it hard to figure out how much to apply. It's hard to apply enough so that it shows, but not so much that it balls up on my eyelid. 

I'm also having difficulty imagining whom this shadow would flatter. I think if you're very fair-skinned and look good in pastel shades of makeup, this shade might be beautiful on you. But I'm fair, and I had difficulty making the shadow show.

I fully intend to keep playing with this shade, and I'll also try it on my daughter, who patiently lets me use her as a guinea pig. But for the moment, I can't recommend this shadow.

Also? Chanel prices are always ridiculous, but the Illusion d'Ombre Riviere eye shadow costs $36. For that price, I say it's not worth the money. Illusion d'Ombre shadows are wonderful, and I definitely recommend them--just not this shade. 


  1. As the recipient of the Chanel Fairy I receive lots of products and I can safely say I am never sure who the colors are designed for. A couple of things are hits but many are misses. Beautiful in the pot, but often for complexions unknown to me.

  2. Thanks for the comprehensive review. It won't work for me.

  3. what about just applying it as a liner, to add a subtle pop of colour.


Gentle Readers:

For the time being, I've turned off comment moderation. Please don't spam; it's not nice.

xxx, Poppy.