I love Japanese art and culture and I love NARS so the combination of both is something I hate to pass up. This is the reason why I've been buying all the NARS brushes from their Artisan brush range and also the reason why I really, really, really want the new NARS Bento Box lip set. This set which has been released for the holiday season truly transcends the makeup category and is really a work of art. It is so stunning and everything from the wooden box it comes in to the colour of the lip products just screams elegance, quality and beautiful workmanship.
The only problem is that this gorgeous set comes with an astronomical price tag. The set goes for $125 in the US (which I would actually gladly pay) but this set runs a ridiculous $240 in Australia and I just can't justify spending that much money on it! If the US was charging the same price then maybe I could convince myself that was the value of the product but knowing that the product is almost 50% cheaper in the US makes it a no go in my books.
This set is stunning though and I have a feeling I'll end up cracking and buying it on evil bay for a hopefully cheaper than $240 price. The set comes with two lipsticks that are in a new formula exclusive to NARS. The lipsticks are in the shades Maiko and Sakura which are a vibrant red and bright pink respectively and both shades look gorgeous. The set comes with a lip brush included and this brush is similar to the NARS Yachiyo brush in that its handle is covered in black wisteria.
The concept for this set seems to come from traditional geisha makeup which involves the extraction of the red pigment from safflower ( a variety of flower) which is then used to paint the inside of ceramic bowls. To use this pigment you have to dissolve it by using a wet brush and then paint it on. I haven't seen the texture of the NARS version in person but it seems more similar to a typical lipstick than the true geisha makeup. The amount of product held in each bowl is apparently the same as is offered in a full size NARS lipstick bullet. Apparently you should be able to get about 150 uses from each bowl.
I seriously am in love with this set and I even adore the promo pictures featuring Francois Nars' muse Daphne Guinness. She looks so ethereal and regal at the same time. It's so visually stunning. There were only 3000 of these sets produced and 1000 of these will be sold in the US and 2000 will be for sale internationally. Exclusivity is the name of the game when it comes to this set. I know that MECCA in Australia is selling it so all of you Aussies who have money to burn better snap one up quick if you're interested!