Monday, December 10, 2012

In a Winter Wonderland with Paul & Joe

I have an undeniable soft spot for woodland creatures. Squirrels, hedgehogs, deer and any kind of bird are among my favorites which is why I was completely unable to resist the woodsy appeal of Paul & Joe's limited edition Winter Wonderland set for Winter 2012/2013.

I'm thrilled to have this set as it's my first foray into Paul & Joe's powder products. I do have an equally adorable blush stick in the shade 002 that was generously sent to me by the lovely Cami of Cami Loves Kiwi. Both fortunately and unfortunately the blush stick is just too cute that I haven't been able to bring myself to use it! 

Paul & Joe's Winter Wonderland set is divided into three adorable metal tins two of which contain eye shadow, one of which contains a nourishing lip balm. The tins featuring squirrels house the shadows while the beautiful doe tin houses the balm. Though I find the tins a bit clunky, I love their unique charm and would be lying if I said the packaging design didn't make up 75% of my reason for purchasing this set!

Paul & Joe describes their lip balm as the perfect pre-mistletoe kiss treatment for your pout and I don't disagree. The balm appears almost neon in the pot, but is in actuality a quite sheer wash of rosy pink. Though the peppermint in the balm certainly overwhelms any fruity notes present it's not at all painful to apply as some peppermint products are (at least for me ... but I have quite sensitive lips).

The smoky eye color included in the set is a true stunner and the real product I was after when I purchased the collection. Paul & Joe paint the picture that this color is largely black with pearl particles throughout; however, the color is much more complex as far as I'm concerned. A deep burned brown color with dark evergreen tones, it's the perfect shade to create a smoky eye that complements my green eyes.

The glistening eye duo is comprised of shades that are easy to wear on a day to day basis. The caramel side of the duo reminds me of sun peeking through the winter treetops in a forest, while the shade Paul & Joe describes as "white" is actually a very subtle pink and blue duochrome that looks exactly like freshly fallen snow that's been dusted on the tips of evergreen boughs.

Though all three of the products included in the Winter Wonderland set stand beautifully on their own, when used together the result is stunning and is without question a look I'll be wearing all winter long. More than lipstick or gloss I require a subtly tinted balm to protect my lips during the coldest months of the year, so Paul & Joe's soft rose treasure will be a frequent staple in my winter routine. 

While the shimmering snow white can be applied in the inner corner for a more festive look or on top of the glistening caramel, I've preferred to skip the snow shade entirely favoring patting the caramel shade across my lid and using the smoky green brown as a blended cat eye which creates a lovely understated haze around my upper lash line.

(Left to right): Paul & Joe Winter Wonderland lip balm, smoky eye color and glistening eye color duo

Though the products that make up my makeup collection are largely housed in sleek black and silver packaging, I've always been attracted to well designed compacts, cases and tubes. The packaging of Paul & Joe's products is notoriously artistic: part "cutesy," part "vintage" and always well executed. 

The Winter Wonderland set is far more than just a collection of oh so adorable tins inspired by woodland creatures, it's a very well edited collection of products that are easy to apply and mix and match to create both beautifully simple and smouldering winter looks.

Have you tried any products by Paul & Joe? I'm eager to explore the brand more: this is one book that can be judged by its cover!