And so we find ourselves past the peak of summer make-up collections – but Guerlain isn’t done just yet! Their annual post-summer bronzer has launched, and this year it comes with a companion: a brand new Guerlain Aqua Allegoria fragrance.
The Terracotta Terra Nerolia Tan Enhancing Bronzer and the Aqua Allegoria Nerolia Bianca Eau de Toilette are inspired by the last rays of the summer sun, scented with the intoxicating aroma of neroli. Intrigued? You should be!
Guerlain’s post-summer bronzers tend to arrive in a larger-than-average compact, and this year’s limited edition offering is no different. This one might just be my all-time favourite, though. Whereas Terra Inca from 2011 and last year’s Terra Soleia were straight-up bronzers, Terra Nerolia features both a bronzer and a flattering coral blush. Even better, the powder is scented with the gorgeous Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Nerolia Bianca fragrance.
The larger size of the compact means that both the bronzer and blush are perfectly functional when used with your regular-sized brushes – there’s no accidental two-tone colour application here! After falling so hard for the practicality of the Dior Nude Tan Bronze and Blush Duo (reviewed here), Terra Nerolia has arrived at exactly the right time.
The mirror is massive – it’s almost the entire circumference of the palette! The first thing that sprang to mind when I opened it up was its multitasking credentials. The Terra Nerolia palette will negate the need for a separate blush, bronzer and portable mirror; its more than big enough to be able to apply a full face without wishing you had more room to see if you’re getting mascara all over your eyelids.
The palette is made up of two shades: a beautiful neutral bronze (said to be a close match to the original Terracotta Bronzing Powder in shade 3) and a peachy coral blusher shade. The golden colour is a temporary golden shimmery overlay; this can be brushed away pretty easily if you’re not a fan of glitter, or moved around to infuse the rest of the palette with shimmer. It can also be left as is and used with a small brush for concentrated doses of ultra-shimmery gold pigment.
I tried really hard to avoid the golden overspray when swatching the bronzer and the blush to give a truer interpretation of the colour. You can see each one is actually quite matte, with a slightly satiny finish which stops the colours from being too heavy or ‘chalky’. The shade at the top there is the golden overspray mixed with a touch of the bronzer. Pretty isn’t it? Used sparingly I think this would make a lovely eyeshadow, or even a highlighter if you’re a dab hand with blending.
I chose to move the overspray around and it faded away into something far more subtle, as above. You can see there’s a still a golden shift on both shades, but nothing too ‘glitzy’. It’s really pretty this way, and a bit more user-friendly in terms of contouring and colouring.
As well as the post-summer bronzer, Guerlain also releases an annual, limited edition Aqua Allegoria fragrance. This year’s rendition is Nerolia Bianca, a deliciously bitter medley of juicy orange and orange blossom. They’ve subtly tied the releases together this year – the Terra Nerolia bronzer is scented with the Nerolia Bianca fragrance, while the coral orange shade of the powder is reflected in the soft orange juice of the fragrance. It’s a sweet touch!
Now for a bit of background: the Aqua Allegoria range is a collection of fragrances that draw from the raw materials of nature. A slight departure from Guerlain’s core line of fragrances, the scents are deliberately lightweight, modern and easy to wear. These simple and sophisticated distillations are designed to be fleeting but concentrated, offering a rich fragrance experience from the first spritz. The collection is refreshed with a new scent each year, mirroring the renewal of nature.
Nerolia Bianca is a sharp contrast to last year’s languid lily-and-honey offering, Lys Soleia – and I mean sharp! The composition is based upon the bitter orange tree; from the ripe orange fruits, through to its narcotic orange blossoms. The twig and the leaf of the tree are represented by petitgrain essence and cedar. The result is really striking, immediately enlivening the senses with its combination of fruits and peppermint, before mellowing into a delightfully sundrenched, floral medley. The combination of neroli, orange blossom and ylang-ylang in the heart is just lovely. In the base a musk, white amber and cedarwood provide some longevity, but this scent is mostly about that completely invigorating initial blast.
The bottle for Nerolia Bianca will be familiar to Aqua Allegoria fans, with the exception of the reworked soft orange juice. Guerlain’s emblematic bee appears on the top of the heavyweight metal lid, together with the characteristic honeycomb metallic lattice on the bottle. It’s classic, chic and luxurious, just like Guerlain itself.
The Guerlain Terracotta Terra Nerolia Tan Enhancing Bronzer and Aqua Allegoria Nerolia Bianca Eau de Toilette are available now at Escentual