First off, let me say that I am pretty strict about what beauty products I use on myself. I like Alima because it has a straightforward ingredient list (no parabens, or bismuth oxychloride) but it does contain mica, which can irritate some people's skin or cause acne. So this is not totally pure in content, but it is one of the better comapnies out there (better than Bare Escentuals which contains both bismuth oxychloride and mica). I like the look of Alima because it gives a matte finish and therefore looks more polished than most other mineral foundations. It gives good coverage, although BE still seems to cover blemishes a bit better. By itself, this foundation did cake a bit on my skin. What I like to do with this foundation instead is to apply it over my Aubrey Organics Translucent Base so my skin looks more done-up but not fake or cakey. I apply both with the Alima foundation brush, which is pricey but totally worth it (and cruelty-free). A word of caution: I am super pale, I always end up using the lightest color foundation available. However, with Alima I instead ended up using the Cool-2 shade. So stock up on the samples ($1.50 each on the Alima website) to find your correct color before springing for a full size jar. The foundation colors are tricky to figure out without actually being able to see how it looks on your skin.
I switched to using mineral foundation after all my frustrations and woes from using cosmetic counter foundations that gives me tons of skin problems like clogged pores, breakouts and whiteheads etc. I do not have clear skin to begin with..(i have sensitive combi acne prone skin, fyi). the least i need was more breakout obviously, good coverage is definately something i looked for in my foundations. I started using the satin matte foundation in B2 about less than a year ago after my facialist recommended it to me. With the help of foundation brush #25, application is a breeze and for additional coverage i would slowly layer it on. Though oil control is almost non-existent, it does not cause my skin to breakout and gives me less whiteheads/clogged pores. I couldn't purchase B2 in my local store as the stock ran out, was recommended to use N2 instead. Its a tiny bit lighter from B2, but i could barely notice the difference. I'll continue using mineral foundation on top of my BB cream daily.
I have been using Alima's Satin Matte Foundation for about 2 weeks now, and the longer I wear it, the more I really love it. Alima offers a huge range of shades for all skin colorings--this is the first mmu I've found where I've been able to find an exact match to my skin (olive 1). In the past I tried Everyday Minerals olive shades as well, but found them much too green and drab for my skin. Alima's olives don't appear green at all, and seem to just brighten and smooth out my natural coloring. Another plus is that I no longer have any of the itching I experienced with BE, as Alima doesn't contain bismuth oxychloride. I have very oily skin and huge pores, and the matte finish of this foundation is great, as I don't need or want any extra shine. My pores and imperfections are hidden quite well under a light-moderate application of Alima. With my very oily skin, I do have to blot and apply more finishing powder throughout the day, but my face never turns into its usual oil slick, and the foundation seems to stay put even with minimal touch-ups (I have just ordered Alima's balancing primer powder to see if it will extend the time between blots/touchups). I recommend that anyone who is trying Alima read the application tips on their website, as their mmu doesn't need to be "buffed" into the skin like many other brands. All the Alima products I've tried so far have been lovely, as has the customer service. I'll continue to use Alima because it's an all around great product and company.
**EDIT: after using this product for 6 months, I decided to switch to another brand. While Alima went on beautifully, I found myself turning into an oil slick within an hour of application and needed to blot continuously all day. I also noticed that in pictures my skin appeared sallow and almost transparent, and this effect remained no matter what foundation shade I used. I suspect I need something that diffuses the light a bit more, as well as something that doesn't react as much with my oily skin.
I think that this foundation formula is hit or miss in terms of coverage and overall satisfaction. I do believe that it will NOT break you out so it definitely has that going for it. I tried it in several colors and couldn't find a match so my review is more formula based. It does seem like it kind of sits there and doesn't look totally natural but it will even out skin tone. I am newish to minerals so my technique is probably off. I like Alima as a company and want to give them the benefit of the doubt.
I think that the zinc oxide actually helped my skin a lot in the beginning then the weather changed and I started to get very dry (I live in Southern California). So I wholeheartedly recommend this to someone struggling with acne because it might help your skin while giving it a modicum of coverage. I am really wanting to love this foundation but the samples are kind of expensive 1.50 for a smaller amount than what EDM gives for free. And the double edged sword of having soo many colors to choose from does honestly make initial color selection a pain (plus the aforementioned expense). I've ordered from them twice and the shipping is exquisitely fast and things arrive beautifully packaged. My recommendation is that if you're feeling a little flush to first start with Alima and then move on to EDM once you are a little more broke.
I really wanted to like this product. It looked great for about 30 minutes, then, it looked like I had smeared some tan colored dirt (very) randomly on my face. I tried it with several different primers, but it reacted quite badly with my very oily skin.
First impression is that I don't like it as well as Everyday Minerals foundation. It seems to sit on top of my skin more, and looks more fake. Then kinda gets a greasy look to it after a little while, yet settling into lines in other places. Maybe I put a little too much? Either way, it seems good quality and they have good color selections. Their customer service is great. I currently prefer the Everyday Mineral Original Glo foundation, it's a bit more natural for me. I also prefer their selections of concealers and blushes, which I think are superior.
Alima has amazing customer service; I asked for some help on finding my shades through e-mail and an employee asked some questions from the colors and brands I've used and she gave me some colors to choose from. It took me many times to find the right shade from the 5 she told me but the product is incredible. My face has a flawless and matte finish! My face is very oily and acne prone. Although I used MAC Blot Powder for the finishing step and to blot.. I only had to apply that after i applied Alima and that was it. The whole day my face stayed matte! From 8Am to 1pm I still looked shineless :D
EDIT: I prefer using liquid foundation as it stays on longer and I find that mineral foundations tend to reveal fine lines and emphasize the pores...... D:
I might purchase this foundation once my skin clears up and maybe after i get laser treatments for my acne scars. Reason i say this is because this foundation provides light/medium coverage. Which isnt enough coverage for me or anyone who is looking to cover flaws other then evening up skin tone. I did love the way it felt on my skin and the way it blended with such ease. Its probably the easiest MMU brand i have tried to blend and apply. I found my perfect shade with WARM 3. It wasnt powdery at all on me and it lasted a good while.
Not bad, but I don't think it's for me. I think many customers will be in awe of extensive range of colors but I was unable to find a match among the samples I got: B3 (way too pink), W3 (too light and peachy), and G3 (right depth, but too yellow). It does look natural and feels light, but there's no point in buying again if the colors don't match.
OMG!!! My skin has never looked so good! I can't even achieve this same finish with EDM which I have to buff to death and still doesn't last as long. Alima lasts all day and stays colour-true (I'm Warm 4 / MAC NC40). The coverage is excellent and very buildable and I can't see my pores YAY! Classy packaging unlike the cheap EDM containers that make a hell of a mess. Customer service and shipping to Australia is the best. Sorry Glominerals but this is my new HG of mineral makeup!
Update 6/29/2009 This has started to make my skin itch especially during hot weather so I have stopped using this for now and sticking to liquid foundation.