Thursday, February 19, 2015

NARS satin lip pencils, a geography lesson (Part 1)

The NARS Satin Lip Pencil shades are all named after parks and gardens, but I doubt many of us could find all of the places connected with our favorite shades on Google Maps. With a few exceptions (like Hyde Park, a "cardinal red"), NARS' shade names belong in a game of Trivia Crack. I love that NARS offers globally connected branding and large shade ranges, but for me the shades are more special when I can imagine the places the shades are named for.

I have researched the places in this post to the best of my ability and profiled the most iconic place for each name. I have also chosen a picture that shows both the natural beauty of the location and a color reference to the NARS satin lip pencil shade. If I have an error in my research, please leave me a comment and I will correct it ASAP!

NARS satin lip pencils launched in Spring 2013 and there are 16 shades available currently. This post covers the first eight shades and part two will cover the remaining eight.

1. Biscayne Park - Pink guava | Florida, USA
Biscayne National Park is in southern Florida, near Miami. 95% of Biscayne National Park is water, as the park protects its namesake, Biscayne Bay. I feel like Stefan, but Biscayne National Park seems to have everything: shipwrecks, coral reefs, incredible aquatic life, and is close to the Everglades and Miami.

Photo credit: USA Today / NARS

2. Floralies - Light apricot | Montreal, Canada

Montreal's Floralies Gardens are on Notre Dame Island in Parc Jean Drapeau. Notre Dame Island is a man made island in the Saint Lawrence River that was built in 1965 for Expo 67 and later used during Montreal's 1976 Summer Olympics. The 25 hectare Floralies Gardens were created for the International Floralies competition in 1980 by world famous designers and landscape artists.

Photo credit: / NARS

3. Isola Bella - Peach beige | Lake Maggiore, Italy

Isola Bella is a small island in Lake Maggiore in Northern Italy. Carlo III of the House of Borromeo began construction of the palace with a citrus and flower garden in the 1630's, but did not finish due to the outbreak of the plague in Milan. The palace and garden were ultimately finished forty years later by Carlo's nephew and named after his wife Isabella. The baroque architecture of the palace and garden terraces are opulent and decadent. Isola Bella has many statues, including one of Love riding a unicorn that guards the top terrace.  Depending on your perspective, Isola Bella is an island fit for a partying queen or a long lasting testament to gauche taste.

Photo credit: / NARS

4. Rikugien - Rose pink | Tokyo, Japan

Rikugien is a park in Tokyo, Japan built around 1700. The name Rikugien means 'six poems garden' and shows miniature scenes from 88 well known poems. Rikugien represents the traditional Japanese garden style of the Edo period and features lots of trees and walking paths. As you would expect from a historic garden named for poetry, Rikugien is known for peace and serenity. Rikugien is also one of the shades in the 2015 Sephora birthday gift.

Photo credit: / NARS
5. Lodhi - Coral | Delhi, India

The 90 acre Lodhi Gardens in Delhi, India are known for their historical importance. The structures in the gardens, including tombs, a mosque, bridges, arches, and a watercourse, provide very rare examples of architecture from the Sayyid and Lodhi Dynasties. The oldest tomb in the garden, built in 1444, belongs to Mohammed Shah, the last of the Sayyid dynasty. The Lodhi gardens are also known for the tomb of Sikandar Lodhi, the penultimate ruler of the Lodhi Dynasty, who died in 1517.

Photo credit: / NARS

6. Timanfaya - Mandarin orange red | Canary Islands, Spain

Out of everywhere in this list, I most want to visit Timanfaya National Park in the Canary Islands in Spain. Timanfaya National Park is named after its only active volcano, named.... dun dun dun.... Timanfaya. Tricky, huh? This national park is a part of a UNESCO designated biosphere reserve and has restricted pedestrian access to ensure preservation. If you ever wanted to visit an active volcano on a camel, then this is for you. If you wish you were adventurous enough to visit an active volcano on a camel, just wear the shade Timanfaya on your lips and everyone will think you are a badass.

Photo credit: / NARS

7. Yu - Bright pink | Shanghai, China

The Yu Garden in Shanghai, China, was built in the mid 1500's by the Ming Dynasty. The Suzhou style garden is classically Chinese and contains many constructed landscapes separated by walls and pavilions. One of the main attractions of the Yu Garden is the 5 ton Currow Stone that was supposed to be for the imperial palace in Beijing, but the boat carrying it sank near Shanghai, so it was installed in the Yu Garden instead. This garden is known for its pavilions, pagodas, and ponds, and history. How many other places can you see a 400 year old gingko tree?

Photo credit: / NARS

8. Luxembourg - Watermelon | Paris, France

The Luxembourg Garden, in Paris' 6th arrondissement, was built in 1612 by Marie de' Medici, Queen of France. Marie de' Medici (of the legendary Italian House of Medici) was widowed by King Henry IV the day after her coronation. She modeled the Luxembourg palace, garden, and fountain after her native Florence. The garden contains over 100 statues and is known for the Medici Fountain and tree lined walks. Today, the garden is owned by the French government and the French Senate meets in the palace.

Photo credit: / NARS
*whew* you made it through part 1 -  good work! I hope you found this as interesting as I do!

Coming up in part two, the other eight shades: Hyde Park, Majella, Golshan, Palais Royal, Het Loo, Bansar, Mandore, and Jardin de Plantes....

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