NARS Sheer Glow Foundation


1489 reviews

62% would repurchase

Package Quality: 2.9

Price: $$$$

Package Quality: 2.9

Price: $$$$


Cyclopentasiloxane, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Dimethicone, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Triethylhexanoin, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Bis-butyldimethicone Hectorite, Sodium Glutamate, Sorbitan Sesquiisostearate, 1-Methyl-Hydantoin-2-imide, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Polysilicone-2, Serralysin, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Glucosyl Hesperidin, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Tocopherol, [may contain: titanium dioxide, iron oxides, iron oxides]

on 8/11/2010 4:24:00 PM

Age: Unknown

Skin: Combination, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Black, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Don't believe the reviews that state this has medium-full coverage. It really doesn't.

Background info: Im medium complected and deep olive, around C40 in MAC, MUFE 153. My skin is combination (oily t-zone, normal elsewhere). I have suffered from mild/moderate acne in the past so although my skin is clear looking at the moment, I have a lot of reminders I want to conceal.

So my experiences with this. I always get matched wrong (the SA actually matched me to Cadiz first time round, yes, 4 shades too dark). Because I'm quite olive, they assume we are orange and dark. Nope! If you have olive undertones and are around NC30-NC35, try Stromboli. It's the only one in the range specifically for olive complexions. Now the colour does run a little pale, but once shaken and blended into the skin, the undertones match and it looks okay. As I'm C40, I like to deepen the colour of Stromboli by mixing it with my other skin-friendly foundation (No7 Beautifully Matte) which is a little darker, and that is my flawless face winning combination. If you're not into the whole mixing and experimenting thing, and are darker than NC35, you should try Barcelona which is deeper but less olive and ever so slightly pinker. The next ones above these (Syracuse/Tahoe) are very very warm-toned and will probably turn muddy on us olive girls.

The consistency is weird. It's very runny (it's advisable to shake the bottle before dispensing), but when you apply it to the skin it's not smooth or easy to blend. It dries up really REALLY fast on the skin, so I have to do small sections at a time. It may turn cakey if you don't blend it in quickly. Because of it's formula, it does indeed work better when applied with fingers because you can press the foundation into the skin more so the texture of the foundation somewhat softens. Despite its strange cakey texture (very similar to Sheer Matte) it provides only SHEER-MEDIUM natural looking coverage.

It definitely is sheer for me, but buildable to medium natural looking coverage. It's sheer because one layer of foundation will even out your skintone and give you a healthy look, like a tinted moisturiser with more coverage. But one layer doesn't cover my acne marks or even my freckles for that matter, my freckles still show through and they're really faint! For comparison's sake, MAC Studio Fix Fluid will completely cover my freckles without me even wanting it to. Back to NARS - If I want to build it up to medium coverage I will pat some more foundation into the skin where it needs more coverage and it will look acceptable for me at this point. Not amazing, but nice nonetheless. For me, this dries to a completely matte finish. I don't see any 'satin' sheen on the skin. It is really matte but it sits on the skin in a natural way (unlike MUFE which sat heavy/greasy), it looks and feels like second skin. I can stroke my cheeks and they feel so smooth. My skin feels like it can breathe. And the glow? I do see a subtle radiant golden glow, but that just could be my skin you know... ;)

After about 4 hours this foundation will have fully settled into the skin. As I have oily areas, I noticed this foundation can breakdown easily there. Some shine develops and and the coverage is now wearing off. If I put a tissue against my cheek, it transfers. So for me it has poor lasting power, which is really disappointing. The good 'fresh faced' look lasts between 3-4 hours before it needs touch ups. However, it lasted much longer (6hrs) over my MAC Prep+Prime SPF50 primer. Since my winning combination of mixing it with Beautifully Matte, I noticed it lasts a lot longer and I now go without oil-controlling primers, successfully.

Overall, because I like a medium-full coverage I like to mix it with a fuller coverage foundation or go over it with the Stromboli powder foundation. I think this is the perfect foundation for someone who has normal skin and who doesn't need much coverage. However, if you're willing to make to make this foundation work for you the results can be gorgeous. I do notice that my skin comes out glowy and flawless in pics, and my bottle is nearly empty so I will be repurchasing.

11 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

on 8/11/2010 3:09:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

so if your looking for a foundation that feels light on your skin but will give you a gorgeous finish this is the foundation for you. its fucking expensive but for some reason i bought it anyways cus i was looking for a good foundation. i tried the color stromboli which is a PERFECT match for my skin. i usually wear nc35 in mac, and medium beige in revlon photoready. i like to apply this with my fingers because i like a really natural finish, but for those days when i look like fucking shit and need more coverage i use a mac 187 brush or a small flat buffer brush sephora(#43) and it gives me crazy good yet natural coverage. i do have oily skin and this doesnt make me any more oily, but i do use milk of magnesia which mattifies my skin like no other.

Age: 19-24

Skin: Dry, Olive, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

I was using this for a while, and I do love the finish it gives my skin for the first hour or two, but its greasy and does not last. Actually, what does last sits on the skin and tends to settle in fine lines. This also oxidizes on my face leaving me really yellow by the fourth hour. If this foundation did not work out for you, try Shu Uemera's Architect foundation. It does everything the NARS does not do.

on 8/11/2010 1:32:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Dry, Olive, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

I wasn't big on foundations i only started wearing them about a year ago. My skin isnt very problematic (Thank God!) but i have dry skin and i get a pimple here and there. I started off with Bare Minerals to find this was too drying.

I got a sample of this at Sephora because I was looking for a foundation on my wedding day for nice pictures. I read good reviews on NARS and MUFE HD for photographs. The SA tried both on me one on each side. MUFE #128 and NARS Barcelona. I'm a NC40 in MAC foundation and have yellow olive undertones. With that said as much as i wanted to love MUFE HD the color made me look dark and ashy. I wore Barcelona on my wedding pictures turned out beautiful very natural finish but the color wasn't just right for me to go and purchase the full bottle.

It was only until i looked up reviews that i found Lisasz09 review about how you have to go and try on the colors because you might think one will be your color but try one shade lighter. I went back to Sephora and tried Sheer Glow in Stromboli and holy crap this is LOVE. HG. Finish is dewy, its not exactly sheer coverage but its about medium. It evens out my skin, improves the texture making my skin look very soft. The consistency isnt very runny and blends beautifully. I apply it with the Beauty Blender or MAC130 or 109 and the finish is always flawless. The price tag is outrageous though! $42 for a 1 oz bottle and then you still have to pay for a $6 pump. Its still good because a little goes a long way. I use less then a full pump. Pump is great i highly recommend purchasing because you waste so much product without it and it locks too :)

Before purchasing my NARS SG I went to try MAC foundations for a cheaper alternative and to my disappointment they broke me out. Possible alternatives I tried: Mineralize Satinfinish and the finish was just to shiny. Then i tried MAC Mineralize Foundation SPF now this is a very close match for the finish to NARS sheer glow gave me and about $12 cheaper but it broke me out.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

on 8/10/2010 9:31:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

This is the best foundation I have ever used. It is everything you could ever want. There's nothing more to say. It provides a medium coverage with a natural finish. Despite it's name I wouldn't call it sheer or glowy. It just makes your skin look perfect. And it LASTS! I've never had a foundation last this long. Maybe Revlon Colorstay but that's a cakey mess. This is a pretty natural finish, but not as natural as Temptu. You do look like you have makeup on, but in a good way. I've yet to try MUFE HD, but it's next on my list. After that I think I'm done.
For reference the Neutragena Healthy Skin is similar, but not nearly as nice. It looks less natural and doesn't last nearly as long on my oily skin. I usually wear that during the week as it's cheaper and still nice.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

on 8/10/2010 8:21:00 PM

Age: 18 & Under

Skin: Oily, Tan, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

Easy to apply, and looks very good on my skin. But seriously lasts me 10 minutes and then my whole makeup is off! Even when I apply powered. This is NOT for oily skin! I gave it to my sister and she has very dry skin, and it looks great on her. I'm going to try the sheer matte soon to see if it works on my oily skin.

on 8/9/2010 6:22:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Very Oily, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I've been currently using this product in Ceylan, which is made for Asian skin tones. It's for light-medium shades, and for me it's just about as perfect a match as I can get, and I thought my Bobbi Brown Natural Finish in Beige 3.0 was a good match!


+ Long lasting
+ Nice satin matte finish
+ Natural looking
+ Buildable coverage


- Price
- Accentuates dry flakes
- No pump

I had tried Sheer Matte, but felt that it basically performs exactly like Sheer Glow except it was more thick in consistency while Sheer Glow is thinner and a little more easier to blend. Surprisingly Sheer Glow does not make me any more oily than I am and has not broken me out, so that's a nice plus as well. I use roughly a dime-sized amount (typically a little less), warm it in my palm, and apply & blend with my fingers (clean, of course); "less is more" is definitely the approach for applying Sheer Glow. I set with NARS Loose Powder in Beach and I touch up with a light application of NARS Powder Foundation in Fiji (already had this from an older purchase; the SAs recommend using this as a touch up powder applied w/a brush instead of their regular pressed powder) using my Ecotools Retractable Kabuki Brush about twice to three times a day after blotting (depending on how long I'm out & about). Also I don't mind that it doesn't have SPF since my moisturizer has SPF 30+ anyway. I didn't think I was going to find something I liked better than Bobbi Brown's Natural Finish, but I'm really starting to like Sheer Glow, especially since the color match is just about spot on. In addition, I really think my skin's been softer and smoother since using it. I think this is a foundation that's worth a try.

UPDATE: I ended up returning this because I think either this or the NARS Loose Powder was breaking me out a little. Kind of a shame, cuz I wanted to love both, but it was the only thing I had changed in my routine and I always use an oil-based cleanser to remove my makeup. Still a wonderful foundation though so I'm not going to change my rating for it.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

on 8/8/2010 9:32:00 PM

Age: 18 & Under

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

It's ok for an average foundation buy not good for it's price. It oxidizes really badly, and it shows all my pores and flaws and it flakes! I would not recomand this for Asian skin at least. Buy Lancome instad, it's the same price.

on 8/8/2010 2:01:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Oily, Olive, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I just switched from mac nc 45 to nars and I am in love. My skin looks dewy all day and I love the feel on my face compared to mac studio fix. I wear this as my dress foundation. I still love my mac mineralize foundation liquid nc 45 and wear that most of the time.

on 8/7/2010 1:41:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

I'm looking for a replacement for my La Mer Treatment Creme Foundation, which is discontinued here. (UK-possibly worldwide too, I'm not sure).
I'm on the fence about whether I'd buy again. Leaning towards Yes but not 100% convinced...
The shade Mont Blanc is a good match for me. I find it very difficult to get a match in foundations normally. I'm quite neutral skin tone, with very little yellow, and most foundations are either too yellow, too pink, or too orange. This is just right. Unlike other reviewers, I don't see a lot of pink in this one either, it looks more like a beige tone to me, especially when compared to my other foundations.
This goes on very smoothly, and I find it to be quite pigmented so a little goes a long way. Less is definitely more with this. But it's very easy to blend. I can get reasonable coverage, and when I've first done my face this make up looks perfect. I follow the instructions that came in the box - warm it up and use fingers to apply. This definitely gives far better application for me than sponges/brushes/beautyblender etc etc.
The problem starts about 2 hours in after application. My T-zone gets very shiny indeed wearing this. I have to blot and powder every couple of hours.
So, nice shade, lovely coverage that makes my skin look pretty good, but it's high maintenance doing the blot/powder thing every 2 hours. Unlike many other foundations, it does touch up very well too. I can apply more of it after blotting, if I need to, and then powder again, and it still looks great. it worth the effort? I'm not sure...
Good but not HG. I can definitely see why this works so well for some, but not for others.
I'd recommend anyone who gets shiny to test this for a couple of hours at least before laying out the cash for it.
£29 here in UK.
This also doesn't do much for pores, so I'll need to get a decent primer to help out there.
See? Sheer Glow - a good colour match- but you are such high maintenance!

UPDATE- Had to lippie this one down. It just doesn't wear well on my skin. Good colour, reasonable coverage, but I need a foundation that lasts longer than this and I just can't deal with the oilies this gives me.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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