IS THIS REAL LIFE??
Ok ladies. I hope you're ready for your life to be flipped-turned upside down.
Huge pores? Got 'em.
Enough oil to power a car? You bet.
Complexion that looks like a toddler took a purple and red crayon to it? Check.
I've tried it all. Hourglass Liquid Powder Foundation, EL Double Wear, EL Double Matte, EL Maximum Coverage, Sephora Perfection Mist, Lancome Teint Idole, every drugstore brand advertised by beautiful stars wearing anything but that foundation in the commercial. You name it, I've smeared it on my face.
So, I was on here perusing the reviews in my never ending quest to find my HG foundation. I saw this foundation and remembered hearing the name before. My cousin had always raved about Merle Norman, but she was just naturally gorgeous and I just couldn't trust anyone who woke up looking like Jennifer Anniston in season 4 of Friends. So, I did some stalking on YouTube and found some videos. I was pretty blown away. I decided to wake up at 9am and make the trek to my local Merle Norman the next day because I'm that impatient.
The lady put it on in the store and I will have to say that I wasn't blown away at first. I'm extremely specific in how I do my foundation. She didn't know the extent of my annoying perfection, so I can't blame her. So naturally I went home and scrubbed it all off to reapply it.
I don't know if it's made with actual unicorn tears or what, but the actual foundation is almost weightless. It's not sticky or thick AT ALL. I use my fingers because I'm a caveman and brushes just seem to make my skin look like the movie Holes. You put it on and it immediately gives you a perfect finish. Like angelic glow perfect. Not joking. I also put another layer around my nose and chin because I get hormonally red there throughout the day.
**(Because it is summer, I also bought the Ultra Powder Foundation to put on top, but it's not totally necessary, but I seriously recommend it to set it for all day wear)
I just got up to look in the mirror to see if it had budged since I put it on at 10am. It's 11:23 pm now and there is no oil, redness, settling, anything. That's with ZERO touchups throughout the day as well. It still looks like it did when I put it on.
However, the HUGE thing for me is my pores. No matter which foundation or application method I use, my pores are always obnoxiously large. Not with this. My pores are nearly invisible. Not totally, but I could tell a MAJOR difference. I've also been using Dr. Brandt's Pores No More, so I'm sure that helped too.
All jokes aside, I seriously can't say enough good things about this stuff.
*Also, I've cried a few times with it on (not because of what I looked like) and it totally stayed in place. It'd be an amazing wedding day/PMS hormone-fest foundation.
If Merle Norman ever stops making this miracle concoction, I don't know what I would do. Are you reading this Merle? Please don't ever stop.
Where have you been all my life? My dream for sensitive, acne-prone skin and an active lifestyle. Years ago, a sales assistant gave me a sample and I hated it. I now realize it was likely a darker shade and another foundation. For some reason, its quite different on me than other reviewers describe: thin, light to medium coverage, totally natural-looking and skin-like finish. It controls oil all day, feels breathable right away and washes off easily with my beloved Neutrogena Stress Control scrub. Never transfers, breaks apart or settles into lines. It doesn't make me look older. The lightest shade, cream, is slightly too dark for my super pale yellow skin, but somehow settles into the right shade. Not too pink for once. The easy squeeze tube is a bonus. With most foundations, I look at them and break out. I do need a bit of concealer on acne scars, but its a tradeoff for a more natural look. So happy I found a dependable foundation without sodium chloride, algae or bismuth oxychloride. I recently rediscovered Merle Norman after so much frustration with department and drugstore stuff. Some products are really superior to Dior, Bobbi, etc although it looks "old lady". Please don't discontinue this, Merle! UPDATE: Yep, absolutely no breakouts and skin seems in better condition after using this. Amazing!
It's not worth the price and it feels like you're wearing a mask or something. None of the shades match my skin tone. Either too dark or too light. So I had to put on both a face powder and bronzer to make my skin look right. If it gets above 85 outside it melts off and you have to wash your face a number of times before it comes off. Don't waste your money. The only plus is it smells good.
After nearly a full year of trying out various foundations, Merle Norman Lasting Foundation has grabbed my attention! After Estee Lauder's Double Wear foundation had a down-grade in quality and available shades, I literally went into a foundation search rage. I am in my early 50's and have normal to dry skin. I have tried every med-full coverage foundation, looking for same properties as the ELDW. Three days ago, I remembered a friend who had been a Merle Norman user for years. I went to their store. First I was told about the different foundations and then given a sample of the Long Lasting Foundation in Pure Beige.
The color match was absolutely the same as Fresco in ELDW's old formula. So for the past 2 days I have worn this new foundation to work, as a nurse, very happy with the end of day look. It is so similar to ELDW old formula that honestly, I couldn't tell the difference.
I have used the Merle Norman wrinkle reducer moisturizer underneath and this foundation went on so smoothly. My advice would be if you used to be an ELDW and are disappointed with the changes, this foundation may surprise you in price, quality, coverage and longevity. I know I am feeling a big sigh of relief.
I can say from my mid-20's this product did NOT work for my skin . I have dry skin and it was hard taking the makeup off and it made now my skin oily and I am going back to my MONAVE makeup that I used before even if I have to wait a little long time to get in the mail . But, I will never try other product again if it makes you break out .
Than, I had worse customer service experience and the lady there wasn't helpful and didn't look like she cared that I needed help most of the time so, I went ahead and took my business to other location which is better because I wasn't treated out the door and they took time find my skin tone. I am a Hispanic women and I had to buy 2 types to match my skin ..which made me spend a lot more then expected and I will never go thru that hell again to be treated like I don't have the money when I sure do . I did notice a lot of older ladies there and now I understand if you are old like heck...as I will be one day..but I would never go to them ever ever again . even if I get into my 40's..I will be bare faced and all . no offense to older women is just that is the vibe I got when I was at the store and the sales lady was old too and they had boring eye shadows and nothing updated ...they need to update to younger folks.
I asked the MN lady for a full coverage foundation that would last at least 4 hours without retouching. I have an oily T-zone, and when I get nervous I'll get shiny quick! She went right to this one. My shade is Vanilla. This stuff lasts 6 hours w/o having to touch up. It looks a bit dry upon application. Hardly need powder (tho I use their loose anyway). Will definitely buy this again. Full coverage, lasting foundation indeed. I do recommend the Merle Norman primer, as it works better than my other primers with this base.
It's very very hard to find Foundations for my very picky skin. I have Celiacs and MUST have Gluten free foundation. Not a lot of companies are upfront about what has Gluten and what doesn't and absolutely hate mineral makeup as it ages me and settles into fine lines.
I bought this last weekend and have been wearing it every single day and no irritation, no breakouts and believe me my skin reacts to Gluten and heavy fragrances. It doens't take more than hour of wearing something for me to get a rash or breakout in bumps. It gives me a semi matte of somewhat luminous look. I normally go for as natural as possible but with my very strict guidelines for makeup, I sometimes have no choice and a lot of so called natural and organic brands often use essential oils which irritate me. This makeup is beautiful, it holds up to a 8 hour day easily. I think I ended up wearing this for 12hours one day and all I needed was a little powder on my T-zone to freshen it about 10 hours in. The color is almost a perfect match to my NC-20 ish skin. I'm a Neutral with slight peach/Slight yellow undertones and I went with Vanilla. I go several compliments wearing this and how nice it made my skin look and I don't have nice skin!!
this is fragrance free, Gluten Free (I called and talked to a Merle Norman Representative to confirm this, the Tocopheryl is Synthetic) they are very open about their ingredients and all you have to do is go to a store and the associates are very familiar with celiac/Gluten intolerance and other skin issues. I was very very happy with my makeup haul and my experience at the store. I don't dare ask a ULTA employee to help me or anyone at Sephora because They have steered me towards "Natural" brands that ended up damaging my skin. I'm much more knowledgeable than they are about ingredients.
I believe this makeup will be in my makeup bag for a long time.
This is the first Merle Norman product I have used. I was at the mall to buy my Estee Lauder Double Wear, and thought I would stop in Merle Norman because I have always been curious about them. I had a great experience there. I worked with the studio owner who spent a lot of time with me. She color matched me to Vanilla, and it is perfect for me. I was surprised at how thin the consistency is. I apply two layers where I need more coverage. I apply with clean fingers because I am too lazy to wash a foundation brush after every application. I like the all-day wear, but it feels a little "tacky" late in the afternoon. I do need to apply powder after lunch. I love the tube packaging, I can get out just a little at a time and rub it in and get more. I don't feel like I'm wasting a lot of product like I do with a glass bottle.
After some experimentation, Merle Norman Lasting Foundation (formerly, Luxiva) really is a great LONGWEARING FOUNDATION that looks like skin and doesn't feel like you're wearing makeup.
WHAT I WAS SEARCHNG FOR (lamenting Revlon CS oily/combo 24 Hr and ELDW horrible reformulations--I've been on a replacement trek for well over a yr, trying EVERYTHING): Longwearing, no transfer, neutral beige tones that didn't make my pale 60 yr old skin look like a ghost, pink or orange, that "doesn't feel like I'm wearing makeup" feel, medium to full coverage (that can be lightened up by using a damp sponge), matte to soft matte finish (sorry, all "dewy" finishes I've tried either have minimal coverage that "slide" or disappear after a while or look and feel like a grease ball mess settling into lines/wrinkles/pores) and-although a tall order--look like skin, hopefully at an affordable price.
MY 1st, 2nd & 3rd APPLICATIONS ON BARE SKIN: A horrible wrinkled mess that made me look 10 yrs older (as one reviewer noted) w/ a dry separation tight mask-like look and feel (in the most bad way); 1st using fingers, 2nd using fndn brush, 3rd using damp sponge wedge. Rationale: Too much product used, needing prep.
4th APPLICATION YIELDING FANTASTIC RESULTS: I was skeptical w/ low expectations, before returning, so I wasn't going to go to great lengths to MAKE this work. I primed using cheap Monistate chafing gel (I had other high-end primers in the drawer, but why waste them right?). I waited about 10 minutes before applying the foundation SPARINGLY to small sections as I went about covering the face w/ a fndn brush, as most longwearing fndns require working quickly before setting. Using too much product yields a "too tight" feel that ended up previously looking like "shink wrap" face. WALL-AH! Absolutely LOVELY fullfilling all of my wish-list requests! USING PRIMER WAS THE KEY. I, for one, detest powder. This stuff doesn't need it. But, as long as I was experimenting, I applied a light dusting w/ a kabuki brush of corn starch (yup, you heard me--its the same concept/ingredient as using mineral veil type products). It was an even MORE BEAUTIFUL a finish, blurring my deeper nasal labial wrinkles as much as is possible at my age. My SKIN looked so pretty and like skin... not just my makeup looking pretty. The lightweight feel was even better--longwearing fndns tend to have a bit of a "tighter" feel on the skin in general and just an ever so tiny bit of that is actually a plus in appearance for older skin in camaflaging fine lines and wrinkles, without having to resort to an additional prep product that does the same thing in spreading them and setting them spaced out to appear smoother. There was NO TRANSFER AT ALL--none touching my face w/ my hands, to phone or clothes. I wore the makeup for 10 hours and it looked as lovely as it did when I first applied it. I did need a makeup remover and I followed w/ my face wash and moisturizer.
FOLLOW-UP FACTS: Subsequent applications yielded similarly great results using fingers, as well as a damp sponge wedge. I prefer damp sponge wedges primarily, however, I found with MN Lasting Fndn too much product is wasted in the absorption, as one must work quickly w/ this product before it sets. The coverage is not as opague as CS or ELDW--I'd say medium--so for blemishes/cuts/scratches, concealer is needed--DO NOT add/build more of the fndn or you will achieve the horrible results of my applications 1-3 above. Applying my moisturizer before primer and weekly exfoliation achieved even better results.
I am a pale caucasian and found SEVERAL neutral colors that worked quite well and did not oxidize. My final choice was Alabaster Beige, the deepest neutral pale beige in the line--I detest looking like a white porcelain ghost-faced doll and prefer a bit more color depth, as long as it is up to the point of being nondetectable. Merle Norman, I realize had a stigma of being a granny line, so it was the last longwearing fndn that I opted to try in my replacement quest. I am so glad I tried them as a last resort and secured a great find. Although I am 60 yrs old I have always had beautiful skin all of my life with little effort and with far less fine lines or wrinkles than many gals in theIr late 30's and 40's. The MN sales rep/owner of the studio was most cordial, accommodating and tried 7 colors on me. She did not balk at my choice for the longwearing formula of Lasting Fndn which is targeted for oily skin, even though I have normal/combo skin w/ a few dry patches around my nose--she knew it was a preferred choice for its long wear components and did not try to push/persuade me otherwise... a pleasant surprise. The cost was $28.95 plus CA tax--which I consider affordable for a high end brand and would have paid nuch more to acquire my HG. I don't mind the 1 oz. tube; it's sanitary and convenient for storage and travel. MN chemists and ingredients are top notch, I'm discovering, and are made in the USA.
I wore no makeup at all for about thirteen years, and the past year or so I've gotten back into it. The foundation I'd worn since high school was Merle Norman's Aqua Base, which, to my chagrin, has been discontinued. I got the Lasting Foundation instead in the color Ivory. As compared to Estee Lauder's Double Wear Light and the new formulation of Double Wear, it doesn't sink into my wrinkles and gives a lovely, non-cakey finish. I love that it lasts all day. This is my go-to foundation.
One caveat: this stuff dries *fast*. So, I apply it to small sections of my face and blend well before moving on.