I also got this as a sample from sephora. The texture was silky and smooth but that's about it. Even though my sample color was darker than me it still gave a "chalky" finish and emphasized my acne scars.
This is definitely the best and the most expensive foundation I've ever used...but it is worth it. Like so many new reviewers of this product, I received a sample of this foundation with my Sephora order in #5 Perfect Praline. I had already found what I thought was my HG foundation, Face & Body by MUFE, by the time I received the sample, but I was so pleasantly surprised when I tried this foundation.
The consistency is more watery than other liquid foundations I've used (Smashbox and Clinique - medium consistency, MUFE F&B - gel consistency) and the first time I tried this I definitely put way too much on the back on my hand. I still had a good 1/3 left when I was done. I apply this by lightly dabbing my stippling brush on the product, then stippling the foundation quickly on my face. I have light-medium skin with slight yellow undertones and #5 applies lighter than my skin color, however, after blending and drying, dries to match my skin almost perfectly. I wouldn't say it oxidizes though because once it's blended it doesn't turn even darker or orange on me. In MUFE F&B, I am in between #20 (Ivory) and #32 (Alabaster Beige). I probably lean more towards #20 now that it's end of winter, but in the summer I can become a little darker than #32. Comparing the two brands of foundation, when I mix 1 pump #20 and 1 pump #32 of MUFE F&B (which is what I was using before I found Photo Perfexion), I get the exact color as #5 Perfect Praline (when it is dried and blended).
I have never, ever looked this amazing after applying foundation. I have pretty clear skin with some pigment/scarring from past acne on my chin and under my nose, but for the most part I am blemish free everywhere else and my skin texture is pretty even. Photo Perfexion evens out my skintone and makes my skin look flawless. I use over NARS (custard or ginger) and Murad (medium) concealers and my scarring/small blemishes are well hidden. You can still see them if you look up close, however, from regular distance (eg looking in a mirror) you can't see them at all, and I am sure they would not get picked up in photos, with or without flash. I have dark under eye circles and this foundation hides them well too.
It's kind of hard to explain the finish. It's soft, matte, but luminous (in the good way) at the same time. Applying with my stippling brush, I get a perfect airbrushed finish. I finish off with Clinique's matte pressed powder and my skin looks amazing from 7AM past 7PM. With my MUFE F&B, I would get a little oily around my T-zone at the 3PM-4PM mark, but with this foundation...nothing. It is currently 9 PM and I can't feel even the slightest oiliness to my skin, not even my T-zone. The finish, not to mention, still looks perfect - soft, even and not blotchy. I should also mention that when I'm done applying my makeup, I do use MUFE Mist & Fix. I have used that with MUFE F&B as well, but I get better lasting power with the Givenchy foundation.
Overall, I'm really happy with this foundation. I think this is HG material. It's a shame since I just perfected my application for MUFE F&B, but I think I will use this during the colder months and MUFE during the summer when I want a more lightweight foundation with lighter coverage. The Givenchy doesn't feel heavy at all on my skin, and the fragrance is not noticeable to me. I would classify the coverage as light-medium, but it's definitely buildable to medium. The only thing I"m concerned about with this foundation is that I won't be able to find a perfect match for my tanned summer skin if I do choose to use it in the summer. It seems like many people have said on MUA and Sephora reviews that Shade #6 and #7 tend to turn orange. Perhaps I can mix with MUFE #32 or darker to get my perfect summer shade...
For a foundation, it is very expensive, however, I think one bottle can last me an entire year considering my MUFE F&B will last me over a year. A little goes a long way!
Edit 05/20/12 - I wore this on my wedding day and it photographs beautifully. I had flawless skin in pictures, and my makeup looks as if it was professionally done although I did it myself. I found that applying primer, then concealer, setting everything with powder and then applying the foundation and setting again with powder and makeup fixing spray makes the foundation last ALL day. I only had to blot and powder once and that was just for good measure.
This foundation is pretty amazing. Like many others, I picked this as one of my free samples in a recent Sephora order. Amazingly, the sample shade (5 - I think it's called Perfect Praline) suits my complexion pretty well, even though I pull a little warm/yellow. It applies like a dream and has moderate coverage that looks very natural - not too dewy nor too matte. I personally love the Givenchy scent, but it does dissipate quickly.
Got this in a sample from Sephora and tried it this morning. I usually use a drop of MUFE HD mixed with Stila Luminizer Tinted Moisture, but figured I'd give this a shot. It looked great the first few hours but I just checked the mirror and it looks chalky/cakey/sliding. I don't have overly oily skin either. I have pretty good skin as well, and it seems to be settling into any little flaw I do have. I'll stick to my normal routine.
I've been using this for about 3 weeks after a colossal failure with Chanel Lumiere. I like it, don't love it. I've been searching for something a bit more sheer than Laura Mercier silk creme, which was settling in fine lines too much for my liking. This is probably too sheer. I'm NW15, pale with pink undertones and a bit of blotchiness but nothing major to cover except dark circles from allergies. Photo'perfexion was highly recommended by a CM at my local Sephora after I'd tried on practically every foundation in the store. It's easy to apply if you work in sections. Use your fingertips or a MAC 130. Don't bother with the MAC 190, it's not gonna go on well. It dries fairly quickly, so work fast. Coverage is fairly light, but it provides decent coverage to smooth out slight discoloration. It didn't oxidize on me, which was a huge plus after the Jersey Shore nightmare that Chanel was for me. My main complaint is how quickly it seemed to disappear. i couldn't make it through a work day without feeling like Photo'perfexion ran out on me somewhere shortly after lunchtime. Second, but lesser, issue -- it seemed to dry my skin out and looked VERY chalky/flaky anywhere I was a bit dry. I'm a dedicated Tazorac user, so this is an issue. I might buy this again for summertime wear. I hope I find something better, though.
I received a sample of this in '5 Perfect Praline' and it matches my NC20-ish skin perfectly. This is an AMAZING foundation! It's not thick in consistency at all, but provides an incredible coverage without a heavy/cakey look. I find this balance difficult to find in most foundations. I apply it with a stipling brush and it really looks airbrushed and natural, still covering my dark spots and bumps from cyclic cystic acne. It stayed put and didn't fade or resettle, though I do use a primer. No breakouts or irritation. I've experienced no oxidization, either. Was easy to remove (a lot of foundations 'stick' in my skin it seems, but this washed off easily and thoroughly).
My only gripe is the price-$47 USD!-though I expected this to run high. It's too bad Sephora doesn't have my color available (they really have a small selection in this online), because I think I'm going to make the splurge before too long and purchase this. Maybe I'll go through Givenchy directly. The best foundation I've used so far.
I went into Parfumerie Douglas to try out the new Chanel foundation that just came out and the SA promptly veered me away from the Chanel counter over to Givenchy claiming the Photo'Perfection would be perfect for my skin. So she put it on and wow- just wow. Perfect, natural looking skin...so good that my husband wanted to buy it for me right then and there lol! But I wanted to see how it would wear and look in natural light so I wore it around town while doing some shopping/small errands. It looked so amazing after wearing it most of the day that I went back and bought the foundation that evening.
I finally- I mean FINALLY- found a perfect color match in a foundation (04 Perfect Vanilla) and it doesn't oxidize....I can't stand it when foundations change color on you...drives me bonkers! It gives the finish I'm always wishing for; a semi-matte but with a luminous finish, excellent coverage but incredibly lightweight and natural with good staying power. My t-zone tends be a little redder than the rest of my face and it evens out my skin tone perfectly taking care of the redness and discolorations from acne scarring. The coverage is so good that I sometimes forgo using concealer. I love that my skin can still breathe and feel like nothing is on it but look like I have natural, perfect skin. I use maybe half a pump and I'm good to go. I find that using my hands gives the best finish and it spreads very easily on my moisturized skin and a little goes a long ways. The consistency is not runny or thick; it's in-between I suppose which makes it very easy to work with. As an aside I typically have combo-oily skin during the summer, more combo-dry in the winter and so far I'm in love.
Now on to the cons. If you have any flakies or dry patches it will highlight those areas. I tend to stay clear of this foundation when I'm treating hormonal acne; not because it causes acne but because the treatments I use tend to dry the area just a bit so if you have dry skin test try this foundation first. Also you will photograph shiny because of the SPF 20 so that is something to keep in mind. And perhaps I'm being overly picky here but it will transfer slightly if you don't use a good primer. It only transfers on the end of my nose towards the end of the day (but I tend to wipe/blow my nose during the wintertime).
Despite the cons this is HG for me; at least during the wintertime. I will update this review once summer comes along. I think it will work even better during the summer once my skin is not as windchapped and dry from the winter weather. I'm so incredibly grateful to Givenchy for making this gem of a foundation and I would be crushed if they discontinued this...it's that good.
Love the bottle, love the color, love the coverage, love the staying power, LOVE that it doesn't break me out, and love love love that it evens out my skin tone. Def. On of my favorite foundations along with bobbi brown foundation stick, chanel mat lumiere, chanel double perfection, and armani silk.
I have so many acne scars, red pimples here and there, and I have been using Estee Lauder Double wear for a long time since it covers my imperfections. But then I found this foundation. THe coverage is sheer but buildable and now I use concealer to cover my acne. It gives me a very natural and glowing finish. I dont know about looking in the picture but in real life I really like it. I set it with my Dior forever powder and I have smooth, natural, long lasting looking.
And the good thing is it doesn't break me out like other foundations: Shiseido, Clinique, Guerlain.
I highly recommend this.
I really like this foundation. It's sheer, gives a nice finish to the skin. Not good if you have oily skin but for my, with very dry opaque skin, does an amazing job. I would not buy again because there are many other sheer foundations I would love to try and buy but yes, it is a great foundation that you can build up to get more cover, it lasts all day, gives a nice glow to the skin and the photos look amazing!