I am NW50 and I am still waiting for a cosmetic company to make a tinted moisturizer dark enough to suit my skin. The darkest of the Nars tinted moistuirzers (Polynesia) is still a tad too light for my skin. It's sheer so it blends well but 1/2 shade darker would make a huge difference.
In the end, it wouldn't matter because there are soooo many 'cones in this product that I had a breakout by day 2 of wearing it. Back to the drawing board.
I've been using Nars Sheer Glow in Stromboli for about 2 years. I decided to swtich back to tinted moisturizer for a more natural look. I have used Time Balm, Laura Mercier and Tarte and this one by far is my favorite. It is formulated without parabens, which is a huge plus for me. It also offers a nice level of coverage while still making you look 'radiant.' It also lasts the whole day for me. My skin is normal to combination and so far no complaints about the consistency. Nordstroms gave me a generous samle of the Alaska and St. Moritz. I ended up sticking with the Alaska. THe St. Moritz was too dark, even though the sales lady recommended that one.
I bought this in Finland about 3 weeks ago. I've used it nearly every day since. Sorry, don't know my MAC shade as I can't wear MAC foundation (breaks me out severely). I know this isn't marketed as a BB creme but I have seen amazing results in my skin over the past three weeks. My scarring looks beter and the texture of my skin is much smoother. I have also started using a Clarsonic in this time period, so it may be a combination of the two...
When using the NARS TM, I start with Smashbox Primer in green, then put this on. I follow with Chanel Correcteur Perfection (can't remember the shade). I finish off my make up with MUF HD Powder and my make up stays all day, no shine, no sliding off. The only other foundation that lasts for me like this is Chanel Perfection Lumiere. And this is cheaper!
I couldn't be happier with it.
Although Nars isn't marketing this TM as a BB cream it is a multi-tasker. There is some moisture in this (nothing to quench dry skin though) there are brightening agents, vitamins and sea extracts and compared to most Eastern BB creams on the market right now it comes in 9 shades. Being true to the Nars colour scale, it's pretty much on the yellowy side of the spectrum. I wear Siberia in Nars and found Finland a touch darker but since the coverage is light you don't have to match exactly. It offers much more coverage than a tinted moisturizer; it's more on par with Bourjois' After 10 Hours of Sleep foundation but lighter than Chanel's Vitalumière Aqua. I like the finish, it looks dewy and soft and virtually traceless, this won't mattify your skin so put a matifying serum or lotion on your t-zone if it's oily (try fresh Umbrian Clay serum). I've been wearing it for a month now with no issues.
I decided to try a tinted moisturizer when a few people at different make up counters told me that I didnt need foundation because I had a nice complextion. I went into sephora and asked for a sample of the smashbox one but wasnt satisfied because I thought I needed more coverage. I decided to get a sample of the this one and loved it as soon as I put it on. Its smells nice, its easy to rub into my skin, and its the perfect amount of coverage. Even though the darkest color is a few shades lighter than my skin tone (NW50) it looks fine. I been trying to pull off a really natural look lately and this helps me pull it off. This helps me with the "make up no make up look" lol.
I purchased this in the shade Finland, here is the website info; Finland
(lightest with a neutral balance of pink and yellow undertones)
For my neutral leaning warm skin this definition seems like it would have worked but it turned out too yellow for me. I wanted to keep it because it felt like it had a built in primer, hence all the silicones in it but I'm not allergic so there was no problem, it gave such a radiant glow, a little bit went a long way and the coverage was very good, not patchy, cakey or heavy...it blended nicely. But ultimately I had to return it due to the shade.
I wish I read the reviews here before I tried this TM. I received a sample of Alaska which turned out to be a perfect match for my skin. I loved a coverage and a natural finish to it. But unfortunately after wearing it for 6 hours it broke me out. Will not use it again. Nars should stop loading their foundations with silicones..
Although I've been a makeup lover for many years, I've always stayed away from foundations and anything other than under-eye concealer, mostly because I haven't found shades and formulations that suit my medium Indian skin tone. Reference: I'm MAC NC40. Everything is either too yellow--in fact, even the NC40 is too yellow--or too pink and will make me look ashy. NARS Pure Radiant TM in St. Moritz and Annapurna have totally taken care of that for me. I love the whopping SPF 30 protection, and by blending these two tones, I can find a lovely shade that exactly suits my skin. More amazingly, it doesn't actually make me look too oily at the end of the day (combo skin with an oily T-zone). I've only worn them twice since I bought them, and if they impact my skin the way they have with a few other reviewers (clogged pores, pimples), I'll be sure to update this. For now, my skin looks smooth and finished. I have increased pigmentation around the mouth and on either side of my chin and nose, as is typical with Indian and darker skin tones, and the combination of these two colours evens those areas out nicely.
- the price. It's $49 in Canada...so yes, I had to get around the fact that I just spent $100 on foundation (since I bought 2 shades). However, I don't wear foundation everyday (just Marcelle mattifying moisturizer and Tarte or MAC undereye concealer), so I think this will last a bit. Also, I'm willing to pay more for products that are worth the investment, and considering the difficulties I've had before, this is totally worth it.
- the packaging: I rated it a 4/5 because it's just a simple squeezy tube and a cap. Generally I'm quite pleased with NARS' packaging but I'm concerned that this may pop open in my luggage if handled roughly when I travel. The cap does seem to click into place quite tightly though.
- the coverage: this seems to be a medium coverage, and it still manages to seem quite light and not at all like I'm wearing a foundation. It blends into the skin well, and doesn't make my skin feel 'tight'.
I got the sample in St. Moritz as I figured since I just developed a tan (yes, during that one week in the Netherlands where it's 15C everyday), better go with a shade darker. I'm usually NC30.
However, even St. Moritz still appears to be a tad too dark on me. Kinda orangey and ashy looking. I will most probably go with Alaska for the full size.
But then again, I want to try it a little bit longer (at least until the sample finishes), since I found 2 acne bumps on my right cheek, which I haven't gotten any since my purging outbreak a year ago! Well, I just finished my pill-pack and expect for my period to come soon, but it was usually only occasional zits. And I have never had any problems at all with my Tarte TM.
On NARS' defense, the finish is very lovely. When just applied it looks very natural, not matte nor dewy. After 30 mins it's definitely gorgeously dewy. The coverage is sheer to medium (higher than Tarte TM), which I like, albeit still appears like your skin.
It lasted from 9am to 5pm easily. I needed to apply a little bit more at that hour before I left for dinner at 7pm on the cheek area, chin, and around the nose to cover some pigmentations that were already showing up. I used it without primer, tho, because it's a moisturizer.
I don't really care about the sun protection or the skincare benefit except for its hydrating/moisturizing properties, since I don't rely on makeup for that. I use sunscreen on my own.
For some reason St. Moritz is really too dark for me. My face definitely look tanner compared to my chest, which is a bit weird. Not too orangey nor ashy, tho. I guess something was wrong with my eyes the other day.
It looks like my best match freshly applied, but after 2 hours it oxidizes, also appears to be a bit patchy.
My perfect color is a mix between Alaska and St. Moritz. Just because of that reason, I'm not purchasing a tube. I hate the fuss.
As for pimple/acne, I haven't gotten any single one after 3 more applications. So I guess it was just my hormone messing up. :)