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Liquid - Shiseido - Perfect Refining Foundation



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rated 3.7(89 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 3.7
  • 62% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.1
  • Price: $$$

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rated 4 of 5 on 4/2/2013 4:18:00 PM More reviews by greymattergirl

Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Green

This would be awesome for me if it were a shade lighter. I dont know why I dont see more buzz on this foundation in the beauty community. Remarkably good coverage for such a light weight formula. Very pigminted, while feeling almost weightless. Someone described this as "stretching" across the skin to cover scars and imperfections, while I have no scaring, I do agree, the texture seems to stretch across the skin minimizing and blurring problem areas. I apply this with the Shiseido Perfecting Foundation Brush, and the brush is spectacular as well. This foundation has a beautiful semi-matte finish, and imparts a subtle glow, while still looking very fresh and natural. The wear time is pretty good, around 6-8 hours as long as your skin isnt hyper oily. Really the only complaint I have with this foundation are the color choices. They all seem to run on the yellow side, even the I (netural) tones. Dont even try to choose a shade based on the names..they are all a variation on "ivory," yet none of them are ivory. The only one that comes close to an ivory color is the I00, and it's a tad yellower than most of the ivories I have seen. I am usually the lightest shade in most foundations, sometimes the second to the lightest if the range is extensive, and I can only barely pull off the I00 shade, and in fact, I could not wear this out in full sun light, its ever so slightly too dark, not even a full shade darker, but enough that you can see its not a perfect match in full sun. The packaging is also really nice. Very travel friendly, glossy black plastic, and compact. Dont let the size fool you, though quite small, it still holds 1fl oz, the same amount as most foundations. For my needs and wants, this is a pretty nice foundation. Wish it came in more shades and more varied tones, I think this foundation would be outstanding if more women could use it. I really love this stuff, and recommend it highly, just be sure to get a good color match before purchasing!

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rated 3 of 5 on 3/30/2013 5:53:00 PM More reviews by ensei

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I have to say that I was sucked into the packaging a little bit with the minimalist bottle. It really is a small bottle compared to other foundation bottles, but it holds the standard 1 oz of foundation. The coverage is medium-full with very little needed to achieve it. Because of this the foundation has to be applied and pushed/sheered out since you only need a few drops at most for your entire face.


My skin is about NC25 right now with neutral to yellow undertones and I have combination skin with normal to oily T-zone and slightly dry cheeks. The 'O' range is way too yellow/orange so I tried the 'I' range that leans more neutral/yellow. I tried first the color I40 which seemed like a good fit but was in the end too dark, so I switched over to the I20. The I20 is a good fit, although, the perfect fit would be a bottle of I20 with a few drops of I40 mixed in. I have to say that the foundation does oxidize, and what initially looked neutral/yellow became a lot more pink looking on the skin.


Someone on the board said that this is a lot like Nars Sheer Glow but a little more drying and I agree. This creates a perfect semi-matte sorta glowy base, but has a tendency to cling onto dry flakes like the Nars Sheer Glow did on me. Because of the semi-matte finish, after it dries down, it looks powdery and dry on my skin. No, I don't think that it works well for my skin at all and makes it look obvious that I'm wearing foundation. Despite that, I can see this working for many normal to oil skins especially in the summer time if you don't have a problem with skin texture.

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 3 of 5 top reviewer on 3/30/2013 8:47:00 AM More reviews by Laski

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Neutral Hair: Brown, Straight, Medium Eyes: Hazel

The sample I received was a bit too dark for me (even though the shade name "I40 Natural Fair Ivory" might imply a really light shade...that was a bit misleading for me), but I used it anyway. The finish was really mattified, but I didnīt like the look on the skin too much. It did provide coverage, but even when I applied it sparingly, I found it looked a bit cakey.

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rated 3 of 5 on 3/18/2013 8:09:00 AM More reviews by Yllsa

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Olive, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

At first, it is a wearable product that provides a smooth, powdery finish upon application. But it doesn't last long, especially in tropical weathers. It's very soft, it should work fine in colder climates. Wont recommend to anyone in tropical countries.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 2/26/2013 2:12:00 AM More reviews by MakeupFanNow

Age: 44-55 Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Coarse Eyes: Brown

I have been using this foundation for a year and it is a HG item.

As others have said, you do have to work quickly and in smaller areas as it does set fast. I put a small amount on the back of my hand and use my Shiseido Foundation brush and stipple it over my face. Excellent coverage with great pigmentation. I have not had any transferring issues, this stuff stays put. I do use Cle de Peau concealer on the few spots the foundation can't hide.

I am getting dry skin as I get older, as long as I moisturize well before applying and a touch up much later in the day, this foundation lasts a good 6-8 hours.

I will be using this foundation for years to come.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 2/7/2013 8:34:00 PM More reviews by nhuthao

Age: 19-24 Skin: Very Oily, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

Skintone: NC35
Color in this product: Ochre 40


This foundation is great for everyday use. Overall it has light-medium coverage but somehow it manages to cover scars really well. I have very oily skin and this is the only dewy finish foundation that I like. The wear is not very long lasting - 6-8 hours and redness peeks through - but the other benefits outweigh this one minor con.


About the shade. It's hard for me to find a color that fits my skintone because my skin is medium with warm tones. I use Ochre 40 which looks so light out of the bottle, but once blended the color blends into my skin pretty well!


This can be difficult to apply if you have the wrong tool. It dries really quickly and can look patchy if you don't blend fast enough. I use a stippling brush and apply with my fingers to one area, blend with the brush and continue allover, doubling up wherever i need it.


I love this for the winter but this will probably be too dewy for me in the summer. I've found that as winter fades I like to mix this foundation with my Revlon PhotoReady foundation. The textures mix really well and don't separate on me throughout the day.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 1/27/2013 2:29:00 AM More reviews by MissusJones

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral Hair: Blond, Curly, Other Eyes: Blue

I will admit, this foundation didn't work for me without primer, and Shiseidos refining primer does work wonderfully with the foundation. I stayed away for a long time because I heard it had a matte finish (I have tons of lines around my eyes so matte finish foundations and I do not get along). However I ran across Shiseidos Runway Perfect value kit and I wanted the foundation brush so bad that I couldn't pass up the deal to get it, a full size foundation, refining primer, and mini mascara for the price of $45. (Just the brush sells alone for $30!). The lightest shade available was I20 and when I first received it in the mail, I about tossed the foundation because it looked way too dark. BUT I gave it a try and low and behold it matched my skin nicely. Be warned: this foundation dries SUPER fast, ya have to work quickly, but if I use my Sonya Kashuk flattop brush or Shiseido foundation brush (my new fave) it blends nicely and I get the job done before the "freeze" happens. "The freeze" is about the only way I can describe how this foundation sets on my skin. It Does help with my unevenness and large pores but around my eyes I have just a few lines that aren't so fine anymore, and it does not sit in the lines, nor does it accentuate them...but it just freezes them! LOL! Kind of like someone made an exact replica of my skin, except made it smoother and with less pores...but preserved every line and wrinkle. I really do love the finish because it actually turned out not to be matte at all, but a semi-matte that I can totally live with. I have to do some mega moisturizing before I use it or it clings to dry patches and looks cakey. I honestly don't know how anyone with super dry skin could use this, as even after a mega moisturizing/primer job, it still has a drying and almost tightening feeling for a while after application. I have normal to dry skin that dehydrates insanely in winter months...and I've had to tuck this foundation away till it gets warmer out and my skin normalizes a bit. I think it will probably get put in my spring/summer foundation rotation though, because as I said, I does somewhat refine my complexion and I like the coverage and finish. If you have skin with texture issues but not a lot of fine lines and wrinkles, this is a product you may want to try. A tentative thumbs up for now.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 4 of 5 on 1/22/2013 9:25:00 AM More reviews by agirlwithcakedupmakeup

Age: 30-35 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Black

I have been using this foundation for over a month and I am loving it so far!I have combo/oily/acne prone (more on the oily side) skin. I find the finish to be "your skin but better" and the consistency is very liquidy but dries (very quickly) to a semi-matte finish. (I suggest doing one one section of your face at a time because it does dry that quickly.)
The coverage is medium in my opinion. I use the shade I40 and find it to be a perfect match. I love the packaging as well. Very light weight and since it's a plastic bottle it's very travel friendly. I do tend to get shiny within a few hours with any liquid foundation so I have to set this with a light layer of my Sheer Mattifying compact in I40, mostly just on my T-zone.
Coverage lasts all day, but I do have to touch up with a powder halfway through the day (that's just my skin though...if you're a more normal skin type, you may not have to).
So far I can report there have been no breakouts due to this product! yay!!! I will update with any changes but so far I am loving this and have had people compliment me with a "hey..your skin looks nice today!" so it must be good right?! hehe

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 4 of 5 on 1/20/2013 11:25:00 PM More reviews by Courtneykelly1818

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Hazel

I really like this foundation. The bottle is very small (still 30ml) great for travelling or fitting in a makeup bag. The coverage it gives is flawless and natural. You have to work fast with this product because it tends to dry very fast. If your skin is very dry you may want to stay away from this product or use a primer before application.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 4 of 5 on 12/17/2012 2:24:00 PM More reviews by imago

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Blue

One of my favourite! I like the pigmentation. It covers very well, but as it is liquid, then you dont get this heavy feeling and you really just need a little amount of the product.
It may get a bit shiny during the day, so you need some powder. Other than that, it has this mild illuminating effect, and makes my skin look very healthy and smooth.
The packaging is simple, but very convenient - no heavy bottles to bring along with you. I travel a lot, so this is very important that my make-up stuff wouldnt weigh too much, or take too much room. Best packaging that i have seen for a foundation.
So only negative side for me is the need for powder touch-up during the day.

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