Monday, January 6, 2014

Guerlain Cruel Gardenia

Guerlain's Meteorites Cruel Gardenia highlighter initially launched in January 2012 with the Guerlain Spring 2012 collection.  It sold out of its initial run and quickly became one of those cult, hard to find products.  You can still find some from the original run online for a 100% mark up.  I've been lusting after it for two years and then randomly, it was available at my local Dillards a few weeks ago.

I have no idea when it was re-released.  There is nothing on the official Guerlain site about it and I haven't seen any press releases.  I have no idea if this is another limited edition run or if it is now part of the Guerlain permanent collection.  It's not on the Dillards website, but it's definitely on counter as I know several other people who have seen it nationally.


(indirect natural light)

The design on the powder is surprisingly resilient.  Using a brush, it is difficult to pick up too much product.  (And I had a heck of a time trying to get enough product for a heavy swatch without running my fingers all over the design).  Heavily swatched, it can look like a cool, pinky metallic, but otherwise adds a very subtle sheen with a tiny bit of microglitter.

I tried to find a dupe just for the color and ended up with eyeshadows.  I don't have any highlighters which are overly similar to this.  Of the shadows that are similar in color, two are metallic cream shadows.  I think it's safe to say you're probably not going to be slapping those babies on your cheeks, but purely as an exercise in product duping, here you go:


(indirect natural light)

(direct natural light)

As for how Cruel Gardenia compares to other highlighting products, I compared heavy swatches. You probably aren't going to use a highlighter this heavily, so your mileage will most assuredly vary depending on how much you apply.  

Cruel Gardenia is as bright as the more metallic highlighters without being overly metallic itself.  It really is a beautiful product.  Everything about it is beautiful.  The design is beautiful, the packaging is beautiful, the effect on the skin is beautiful.  This is a lovely, totally non-essential product that, if you have the money to spend, is totally worth it and will keep you warm on those cold winter nights (or maybe that's just me.)

The packaging is nice and luxe (as it should be at this price point).  The compact is heavy and is made of high gloss plastic that manages to not feel cheap at all.  It feels substantial in your hand.  

My only complaint is that the lid of the product screws onto the base at exactly the same level of the powder.  And the design in the powder is actually raised, so it would be easy for someone as suave as myself to accidentally gouge the product while trying to either open or close it.  It hasn't happened yet, but I'm sure it's only a matter of time.

The Guerlain Meteorites in Cruel Gardenia contains 9 grams of product and retails for $68.  As stated before, I picked mine up at a Dillards counter and I know other people who did as well (at a different Dillards counter from mine), but it does not appear to be available at any of the major retailer websites or the Guerlain website.  If you find one, please let me know where you got it.

Overall:  10/10