Kevyn Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer


363 reviews

72% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.9

Price: $$$$

Package Quality: 3.9

Price: $$$$


Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Polybutene, Diethylhexyl Succinate, Polyethylene, Quaternium 18 Hectorite, Calcium Carbonate, Dextrin Palmitate, Honey, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Beeswax (Apis Mellifera), Butylene Glycol, Cholesterol, Lecithin, Talc, Triethylhexanoin, Methylparaben, Fragrance (parfum), May Contain ( /-): Iron Oxides (CI 77491, 77492, 77499), Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891)

on 5/17/2015 5:44:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair, Warm

Hair: Red, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Green

what more is there to say about it at this point? it's a classic. i bought it to use as a foundation but have ended up using it mostly as a concealer. not that it's bad as a foundation, i just prefer something that feels a little lighter as a base most of the time. the shade range is fantastic. i bought sx01 without seeing it in person & it's a very pale neutral, maybe slightly pale for my ~nc10 skin, which rarely happens. def check it out if yr super pale.

i dispense a small amount on the back of my hand with the end of a brush to let it warm up & then spot conceal with a small brush, tapping in w/ fingers. as a foundation i dot it on & stipple in w/ a beautyblender, but fingers also work. i don't find it mixes very well w/ moisturizer but have mixed w/ liquid foundation. i think it would work for most skin types but i do rec setting w/ powder on oilier skin. it has a fragrance to it but hasn't irritated my sensitive skin. i can see why it's a makeup artist staple & i'm glad to have it in my arsenal especially since it'll last so long.

Age: 36-43

Skin: Normal, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I first started getting this as samples from Camera Ready Cosmetics (SX02 and SX05 I think...) I read all the reviews and was prepared for a struggle. Not so. I did have to mix the two and schmeared tiny little dollops, I mean nothing, on chin, cheeks, forehead. I used a wet beauty blender and just worked it in and warmed it up. My skin is having a clear moment right now, and I really want a fresh finish that is believable. Viola! Perfection. It is my skin but totally better. Breathable, lasting (and I work in a hospital), and just wonderful. And, even better, I can use a little heavier dollop as concealor. Bravo!

on 5/12/2015 6:00:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Oily, Medium, Warm

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

This is a wonderful multi-use product, and since it isn't exactly on the cheap side, having several purposes certainly makes it worth the splurge. I have the shade SX08 which is yellow tones and suits my NC30 skin very well. On its own, the SSE is FULL coverage, it's thick and extremely pigmented and will cover pretty much anything. I purchased it whilst my skin was going through an awful spotty phase and it definitely hid a multitude of sins for me personally :D
It's a great full coverage concealer, can be sheered down by mixing it with a moisturiser or a sheer foundation and can be added to other foundations to make them more warm toned. It gives the skin a smooth, satin-matte finish, lasts all day and unless you're really oily like me, you can go without having to powder it during the day.
Since it is very heavy, it should be applied sparingly as a little goes a long way. Make sure your skin is well moisturised however, it will make blending much easier. You can always add more product later, but whatever you do, don't dollop it on because it will look like plaster. I don't use it on a daily basis, only the days when I want my makeup to look flawless all day (parties, weddings, going out with friends etc). It also photographs really well.
The little tub it comes in is very nice, definitely has that high-end feel to it. Don't let the size put you off however, because it will literally last you through several generations. And if I happen to live that long, I shall definitely repurchase it!

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Blue

I will have to update this review after trying it again but so far i'm not crazy about this. Maybe I am doing it wrong but it seems soooo far not a fan but I will keep trying

on 4/16/2015 9:13:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Right now, it feels like this is the only *foundation* I will ever need, AS LONG as my skin isn't flaky. It doesn't fully substitute concealer though.

It's very thick, so if to be used as foundation, it needs to be mixed with something else: moisturizer, primer, sunscreen or another foundation. I read that this is super-opaque, so an amount of a grain of rice of this is enough for the whole face. That's not quite true: if you have very good skin, that might be enough, and also if you only use it as concealer - then that's actually too much for most people. I have pretty good skin, and I use my silicony (slippery) sunscreen as a base for this. I then smear the SSE on and blend before the sunscreen sets. I use about 2 grains of rice of this, and that gives me light coverage - just enough to change the undertone of my face to match my neck. Then I powder and use a little more of this as concealer. Powder might not be necessary for everyone.

As concealer this is for me mediocre-to-not-very-useful. It's heavy coverage, but it doesn't stay well on my blemishes, which can be a little dry - I have more luck covering them with a regular concealer, which is more creamy and tacky. The SSE barely stays on the blemishes for a couple of hours. Not sure how this would stay on flaky skin - I guess only if it's mixed with something else tacky. The pigment really clings to dry patches.

Despite being a crappy concealer, what I actually like about this is:
- it makes for a good foundation, and I can deside the coverage myself
- small packaging that is easy to travel with
- some people say it takes them more time to apply the SSE as foundation, but my method actually saves me time: I don't need to wait till my sunscreen sets before applying foundation
- good shade range
- does not oxidize
- gives a very thin, skin-like texture/doesn't change the texture of the skin

- not good as concealer
- not good over flaking skin without something sticky as a base. Will cling badly to dry patches
- it seems this could get a little oily throughout the day if applied to give full coverage by itself (not mixed with another foundation)
- has quite a lot of perfume, which can bother very sensitive skin
- not sure it will be able to give very full LASTING coverage without mixing with a sticky base (like another foundation)
- the colours can be a little extreme, like SX04 and SX06 are VERY yellow

I have this in SX04 and 06. SX04 would fit someone NC15-20 in MAC shades if applied lightly, and NC20 if applied heavier. SX06 is about NC25, but could also fit NC20 if only light coverage is required, I think (not tested this out yet). Both shades are very yellow... Like, Homer Simpson-yellow. They don't different much from each other, so if you are fair olive-skinned, grab only one of these as sample and SX03

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

on 4/8/2015 1:13:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Oily, Medium, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

This is, hands down, the best full coverage foundation I have ever tried. Unlike most foundations where you have to work to build it, you have to work SSE down the coverage scale, from heavy to medium. The key is buff like a crazy person, almost like you are waxing your dream car to the perfect finish. Once you are done buffing it in your skin will look amazing. Touchable, smooth, not cakey, like perfect baby skin. Because it take so much work I don't use it everyday all over, I do use for spot concealing everyday though. I take a tiny eyeliner brush a dot (I mean super small dot) over my spot and then buff (brush) or press (beauty blender) it into my skin. It is pricey, meh, but I think a whole jar may last at least a year or two? I may have to toss it before I use it up just because it gets too old even if I use it everyday.

on 4/4/2015 3:57:00 PM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I don't know if I can find the words to describe just how LITTLE you need of this product. I have a great deal of redness on my chin from old and new acne scarring along with redness around my nose and the corners of my eyes. At 62 I break out often but the good news is I have few wrinkles and basically my skin is not too dry and just a bit oily on my nose and chin. I use this as a concealer and apply it to a well moisturized face. I put a dot, maybe a bit bigger than a pinhead on a concealer brush and paint it on with small strokes on the areas I want to cover. I let it warm up on my skin for a bit and the buff it in with a foundation brush. I do not like the feel of a face full of foundation so I then just lightly dust my face with a fine milled powder, and then give it a quick spritz with a a rose water mist. Now here's the best tip... You can buy generous samples of this stuff on the CRC ( camera ready cosmetics) website. The samples will last forever!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

on 3/31/2015 2:51:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool

Hair: Black, Other, Medium

Eyes: Blue

It really is a skin enhancer, but not in a good way, it enhanced every little flaw in my skin. I didn't want it as a concealer, but as a light foundation or to blend it with a moisturiser and use it as a tinted moisturiser. I just wanted a bit more of a polished look and used it very sparingly but still it settled in som enlarged pores on my cheeks, it didn't matter how much I buffed away. I also had a little bit of dryness on my nose and it enhanced that as well. I tried it as a concealer, but I have a concealer that I am very happy with and this was much worse than my Hourglass concealer as well, so now it just sits in a drawer. Also, the price is very high for the amount you get and the packaging is a bit unhygenic, although if you use a spatula it should be fine.

on 3/26/2015 7:11:00 PM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Normal, Olive, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

Having read the other reviews I offer this suggestion: after applying, dab just a bit of your best under eye moisturizer and blend (I use a really nifty sponge I found at It won't cake. It WILL conceal ... and last all day. I'm 66+ years old and have typical under eye problem. This concealer is THE best product I've found (ever since Revlon discontinued Moon Drops which is still my favorite). If you're olive toned, be sure to purchase a yellowish color for the best correction. I'm using 04. Love, love love it! If you buy from a store like Sephora online and have other makeup goodies to purchase, you'll take the sting out of the purchase price with free shipping and free samples.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

on 3/24/2015 4:18:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Hazel

(cross-posted under Foundations) I really regret not having purchased this earlier. I was afraid Iíd buy the wrong color, and I live far from the nearest KA counter. I only purchased this recently because I found out that sells samples for about $5 each. I purchased four samples: SX01, SX02, SX03, and SX05. Given the concentration of the product, you could make one sample last for weeks (no exaggeration) of daily application, so $20 was a bargain for four samples to try alone as well as mix together.

Bottom Line:
Genius product that can be used as foundation, concealer, highlighter, blender/lightener for other products, and probably contour. Very travel-friendly. Time and effort spent on getting this right will pay off. A bargain per use. The full pot is $48 and would last the average person months or years with daily use. Totally makes me feel like a professional makeup artist and makes my skin look better than any other complexion product Iíve ever tried. I believe success with this product depends on three factors: technique, mixing medium, and color selection.

I consider this an advanced makeup product. Unless you are extremely proficient, you canít just slap this on and go. Especially starting out, you should make time and be willing to experiment to find the right method. If you are not willing to put in this time and effort, you will likely be disappointed with the results. If I had not read many reviews of this product prior to purchasing it, I would not have known how to use it, and I probably would have just given up.

Hereís how I work it. I remove about a rice-grainís worth of product from the pot with a palette knife (any spatula, orange stick, or Q-tip stem would work). I smear about three quarters of the product on the back of my hand in one spot, and I smear the remaining amount in another spot. I do this because I will be mixing the larger portion with sunscreen or tinted moisturizer to make a foundation, and Iíll mix the smaller amount with a bit of eye sunscreen to make a concealer. I let these warm on the back of my hand for a few minutes. I think this step is key to getting a smooth mixture that is easy to work with. I apply a layer of sunscreen to my face. Then, after I mix in the medium on the back of my hand, I transfer the product to my face in small dots with spatula or fingers, blending the foundation mixture one section at a time. Iíve used both my RT Expert Face brush and my fingers successfully. I just work in a bit for sheer coverage, then add some more and work in, and add layers until I have the coverage I want. I then take the concealer mixture and dot it under my eyes and in the center of my face, and blend with a RT Setting Brush or my fingers. Again, I apply a little bit at a time, building up coverage as I need it. When Iím done, I apply a dusting of Guerlain Meteorites and my skin looks luminous and, on a good day, flawless.

Mixing Medium:
For me, attempting to apply SSE directly from the pot to my face is disastrous. Itís just too thick and dry for me to work with. Plus, I am a sunscreen fanatic and I demand that both my foundation and concealer provide sun protection over and above the layer of sunscreen I use as a makeup ďprimer.Ē Mixing SSE with a bit of tinted sunscreen works best for me (current favorites are Cliniqueís CC Cream, Clinique Super City Block, EL DW Wear All Day Glow BB, Paulaís Choice Resist Super Light Daily Defense, etc.). For my eye area, I mix with Clinique Superdefense Eye Cream SPF 20. Iíve found I can mix with matte- or dewy-finish products with equal ease as long as I warm the SSE on the back of my hand first, blend on my hand with a palette knife, and apply sheerly in layers to build coverage. I have no trouble with the product sinking into fine lines or accentuating any flaws. I just get a fantastic real-skin-but-better look. If you are oily, youíll probably want to mix this with a mattifying primer or sunscreen. Iím combo-to-oily, and I prefer a satin, demi-matte, or slightly dewy finish. I can go 6-12 hours without needing to blot or touch up as long as I don't get overly warm/sweaty. Do experiment with several types of mixing mediums. If you find one that really works for your skin, you will be absolutely stunned at the beauty, longevity, and versatility of this product.

Color Match:
Iím light-complected with neutral, slightly peachy undertones. Iíve stayed out of the sun and have used sunscreen religiously for decades, but my face is still darker than my neck. I cannot match to my neck because I would look like a vampire. But I do want a pretty seamless blend from my lower cheeks onto my neck. My face is currently around NC15/NW10, with some red blotchiness on cheeks and nose. I donít have dark circles, but I have a lot of red around my eyes, and that tends to make me look tired. For reference, I wear: YSL BR20, Nars TM Finland, EL 1N1 or Intensity 1.0, Lancome Clair 20 (NC), Too Faced Snow Glow, IT Cosmetics Fair, Revlon Nearly Naked Vanilla, Maybelline Fit Me Ivory 115, Clinique CC Cream Light, etc. In KA SSE, I ordered samples of SX01, SX02, SX03, and SX05. has arm swatches of all colors.

SX01 Ė (Very) fair, neutral undertones, a true ivory
SX02 Ė (Very) fair, pink-toned, rosy ivory
SX03 Ė Fair/Light, olive/greenish/neutral beige
SX05 Ė Light, neutral beige

Because I am so neutral, I can wear any of the samples if sheered, but I think a mix of 02 and 05 is dead perfect. 03 is just a little greenish/grayish in the pot, but sheers out nicely. 01 is great for lightening up foundations that are a little too dark or pink. 02 is fantastic as a middle-of-the-face highlighter. A 50:50 mixture of 01 and 02 is nearly the exact shade of my neck.

Perfection on me: 02/05 50:50 as foundation with 01 towards neck; 02/05 75:25 as concealer, 02 as highlighter, all mixed with TMs or sunscreens.

14 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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