I have gone through an entire compact of this and used it on & off for about 9 months.
I bought it in late summer last year, loved it, then hated it during winter. Now it's summer again, and I find myself using it daily. So I guess it's a good summer product, better in humidity and when you want a lighter feel on your skin.
APPLICATION: I apply this with a dry sponge wedge. I've tried using a fluffy powder brush but it didn't give me enough coverage. I haven't tried a kabuki brush, but I did try a dense bronzer brush (MAC 109). But I felt like it "polished" the finish too much and made it shiny.
The sponge application uses more product, so it doesn't last very long. But I don't see the point in using the powder unless I can get the finish I want, and a sponge gives me the best finish.
I don't use the enclosed sponge because I don't like to reuse sponges. I prefer to use a new, clean sponge every day. (I think some people think that a product is breaking them out when in fact it is their dirty applicators that are causing the breakouts.)
SUNSCREEN: This makeup has an SPF of 15 but I don't completely trust powder sunscreens so I use an SPF 25 moisturizer under it. (Clinique Super Defense for oily skin.)
MICA CONTENT: Another reviewer mentioned that it contains mica. Some people are sensitive to mica, but I didn't have any problem with it even though I usually have reactions to mineral makeup.
Someone also mentioned that it has a shimmer. I hate shimmery or light-diffusing foundations and I hate the metallic glow that you get with most mineral foundations. But I didn't find this product to be too shiny. I think this is because I apply it with a sponge instead of buffing it in with a brush. It goes on matte and gets slightly dewy after my own oil begins to break through. But I don't get that metallic shimmer as I do with other mineral makeups.
I have large pores but I didn't have any problems with this product amplifying my pores.
COVERAGE: When first applied, it looks great. It covers redness and imperfections as well as you would expect from a powder. But ...
LASTING POWER: This is the only downside. The product fades quickly and rubs off easily. I have to carry the compact with me and reapply if I want coverage throughout the day. Luckily, the compact is convenient to carry around. Unfortunately, this also means you use up the compact twice as fast.
COLOR: I've got light-medium (NC30-ish) skin and I wear the "Light" shade. As far as I can tell, the product does not oxidize. This is what I like best about it.
AS FINISHING POWDER: I tried using this as a finishing powder over liquid foundation; but as it doesn't do much to control oil, I prefer MAC Blot powder in the t-zone. For all-over finishing/setting powder, I prefer the soft finish of Clinique's Blended Face Powder (translucent loose powder).
Bottom line, I like the feel of this foundation for summer. I'd prefer to have something that lasts longer, so I might try some other brands.
Another Clinique powder foundation that I've used is Perfectly Real powder foundation. I definitely prefer the Almost Powder foundation to that one.
I had a love-hate relationship with this foundation for a long time, almost a year now. I got a sample in a magazine, neutral-fair, and it matched my skin perfectly. I loved the effect, light, almost non-existent on the skin, but evened out my skin tone beautifly. So I bought it.
I tried applying it with a sponge it came with and, needles to say, I ended up looking cakey and heavily made up. It accentuated my pores and some flakes around my nose and mouth. I tried using some brushes I had at home, different sponges and the results were different every time I applied it. Sometimes it looked gorgeous, sometimes horrible. I just couldn't understand what was wrong. Then I bought a nice kabuki brush (the body shop one) and Clinique pore minimizing serum (it happened to be Clinique again) and remembered the rule of applying mineral powder foundation. Always apply lightly allover your face, buff properly, wait a little and than apply a second layer (or third if you need to), not heavily straight on. Doing this with my new brush and a serum, my skin looked flawless. Absolutely amazing.
I love it now. I have about 10 different foundations at home and if I had to choose only one, I think I would choose this.
UPDATE: I need to mention two more things. This powder will accentuate every little flake on your skin, so make sure you exfoliate and moisturize well. The second thing is, as I mentioned above, it will also accentuate your pores if you layer it up for a heavier coverage. Then best use with some pore-filling primer.
EDIT: This broke into 100 pieces while being carried in my bag. Just like that. I pressed it back and it's still usable, but I can't take it with me for touch ups any more. Because of that, I wont buy it again.
Like it. Got this in the Almost Makeup kit from Sephora. I don't use the enclosed sponge much but do use it with the powder brush the kit came with (which is fantastic). This is in neutral fair for me and is a NW20 match. It looks a lot darker than it goes on but imagine if I applied damp or with the sponge it may go on darker. Liking the spf coverage. Will keep it around.
HG! great coverage, but looks natural. perfect for my acne prone, oily, skin. doesn't melt off easily like many mineral foundations
I got this as a sample from Sephora, and I really like it. I have combination skin that get oily throughout the day, and one thing I like about this makeup is that during the day it sinks into your skin and works with the oils in your face: it doesn't just melt right off. I do have to reapply once in the middle of the day. I apply this with either a kabuki brush or the small powder brush that comes on the other end of the double sided Essence of Beauty brush that has that and the white angled blush brush on the other end. It also mattifies your skin very well.
I have the Everday Minerals Foundation and I love it, but everyone knows its a pain to carry loose powders around with you. This pressed powder is great and it hasn't broken me out.
Right now this is very HG for me. I love it.
UPDATE: Ok, I still love this just as much as I used to, but I just wanted to add something. I'm NC27 in MAC terms, and I use this in shade 04 Neutral and it's a perfect match and it doesn't oxidize. I guess I got lucky with the sample being my shade (I bought the full sized though). It seems there are people that are darker skinned than I am are using a lighter shade than I am, and I just wanted to say that MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE MAKEUP LADIES AT THE COUNTER TRY IT ON YOUR SKIN AND MATCH YOUR COLOR! Besides getting the color right, you'll know if you have any allergies to the product.
Very nice coverage...I have oily skin and this keeps the "shine" down. The only downside is that they do not have that many shades....luckily shades #2 and #3 are great for me.
I purchased this during a GWP due to the good reviews. I do like this powder. It has a nice coverage and is silky smooth. I use an Everyday Minerals flat top kabuki to apply. Also convenient that is it pressed. I will be using it during the summer since my skin is so oily for light coverage.
I have very complicated feelings about this product. I got it in 03 light the shade was perfect in the store but in home I realised that it was dark for my skin and change it for a lighter shade but unfortunately it was too pink for me. I could not find the perfect shade with this. The coverage and how it looks my skin is pretty good for a couple of hours but then it makes my pores look bigger and I got shiny on my nose. If I could find the dream shade I would think go on with this. I had high hopes for it but unfortunately not HG. I am planning to try Sephora instead of this it doesnt have talc and paraben like almost powder
I agree with the reviewers below, basically this is builable and gets better the longer it is on. I've discovered I like to apply this with a brush better than a sponge. This could be my HG I find it has caused no breakouts and my skin is greatly inproving in it's condition from the combination of treatments I have been using and this. I am very clog prone and my skin is loving this thus far. I might just leave liquid fndt in the dust for good.
Update: I'm hitting pan and have been doing great with this. The one downside of this is that it didn't last very long...I might be looking for something similar that won't be as $$.
Update: 5/3/11 This is still HG have used two years straight now.
me likey... sheer lightweight feel with substantial, yet subtle, coverage. i took this with me during my travels to a 3rd world country thinking this compact would be the extent of my make-up (the spf being another added plus). I was so shocked at the number of compliments I received when I thought I would probably just look plain and unmemorable during the whole trip. Instead I was told that I was so lucky to have great skin, that I always look fresh, and even asked what face wash and moisturizer I use.
sidenote: it did look a bit ashy on my sister when she tried my compact but I think that's because it's just not the right shade for her. her skin is darker than mine.