The Makeup Show is like Christmas for makeup artists and bloggers–sure, IMATS draws some big name brands and personalities, but nothing beats the Makeup Show for specials and workshops. It’s an event that finds many people ticking off days, counting down their calendars. This year, I was particularly excited because their vendor list included Rouge Bunny Rouge.
If you haven’t seen Rouge Bunny Rouge’s picturesque packaging on Pinterest or their glowing, ethereal products on Instagram, allow me to be the first to praise their branding. Their graphic white-on-black boxes and sleeves feature beautiful botanical designs, and their products are stamped with bold black or white silhouettes, further referencing their fairy tale, enchanted forest theme. They had me hooked with packaging alone. But the Russia-based brand didn’t become the darling of bloggers by packaging alone. Their products could come in newsprint and they would be just as spectacular.
I was particularly excited to play with their products in person before purchasing. I arrived at the show just after opening to assure I could touch and feel without interruption–a good plan, considering I monopolized the table for close to half an hour. When a foundation runs for $60 and a pan of eyeshadow fetches $19, you want to get as much playtime in as possible. By the time I left the table, I had accumulated products for nearly every feature on my face and all I wanted to do was go home and play some more.
I’ve eyeballed the Raw Garden palette since I first saw it on Instagram, but just couldn’t justify the price tag, let alone the international shipping charge on top of it. As soon as I saw the vendor list, this palette danced back into my head. The five hummingbird-emblazoned shades inside are exclusive to the palette, ranging from pale neutral to smoked navy, all in shimmering metallic finishes. It really is better suited to dramatic, smokey looks, which I don’t wear often, but with such beautiful packaging and jewel-box colours, it’s perfect for making special occasions even more special.
I have a habit of buying the same eyeshadow colours over and over again, which is why I was drawn like a moth to flame towards Abyssinian Catbird. It’s exactly the shade of metallic antique gold that I live for, in the most buttery, rich formula I’ve ever felt in a powder shadow. I also fell head-over-heels for the opalescent blush-taupe of Rain Dove, which really is the perfect all-over lid colour, and Rufous-Tailed Weaver, which is somewhere in between as a shimmering golden-taupe.
The textures are absolutely beautiful. Each and every product is impossibly soft and creamy, making them some of the most blendable, skin-friendly products I’ve ever used. The Milk Aquarelle foundation is surprisingly fluid, truly milky, so a little goes a long way. It gives a soft, velvety radiance to the skin.
And lipstick. Oh, lipstick. I really, truly love lipstick, so when I saw the Succulence of Dew lipstick in Relish of Heaven, I knew I wasn’t leaving the table without it. Despite being labeled a “sheer” shade, the colour is so bright and alive on the lips that you’d never know. The light shimmer in the formula makes the bright orange-coral appears wet and glossy, which I prefer to a matte especially going into summer. I don’t normally include multiple product photos when they’re so similar, but that shimmer!!
While a cream shadow like their Silk Aether isn’t something I’d normally pick up, I was able to select a shade as a free gift on a show special. Velvet Fritillary is a taupey grey khaki that I thought would make a great base for a soft, romantic smokey look. Another light-as-air, moussey formula that spreads easily and layers well. They recommend using a fluffy brush to blend it out, but using a finger will provide more coverage.
Luxury cosmetics often come at a price, and I’m not talking about the money–most high-end brands I’ve worked with aren’t exactly vegan friendly, and can be owned by parent companies who still conduct animal testing. I was absolutely thrilled to find that Rouge Bunny Rouge is 100% cruelty-free–they do not conduct animal testing on their products or ingredients, source from suppliers who share their philosophies, and do not sell on the Chinese market where animal testing is mandatory. Most of their products also appear to be vegan-friendly.
In this look, I layered colours from the Raw Garden palette over a base coat of Velvet Fritillary. I used the violet shade on the lid, blending the olive-gold into the outer corners, rose-gold into the crease, and highlighted the inner corners and brow bone with the champagne shade.
Needless to say, I am absolutely thrilled with Rouge Bunny Rouge. Their products are stunning, perform beautifully, and I can feel good about loving them with their animal-friendly philosophies. After all, a company that aims to make you into the fairy-tale princess you’ve always longed to be should be kind to all the woodland creatures (and domestic, and jungle, and ocean, and–)…