This has pretty much everything I want in a foundation-decent coverage, natural finish, doesn't break me out, and high, broad-spectrum, stable SPF. The only downside is that is can look slightly streaky when applied with the applicator, but when I apply with my fingers it's perfect. Will buy again.
I've been using the Healthy Skin liquid makeup since November, and it's been working splendidly for me. However, liquid foundation can be quite a hassle when it comes to touch ups throughout the day, so I was very pleased when Neutrogena released this compact formula. The packaging seems very hygenic (the sponge and makeup are kept in seperate compartments, with tiny holes for ventilation on the sponge's side, with a large mirror between them) and makes for effortless touch ups. This formula boasts a truly impressive SPF (55! Full spectrum!) but doesn't seem sunscreen-y at all; in fact, the coverage feels very light and airy, even though it masks blotches perfectly. So far (I've been using it for approximately 2 weeks) I haven't had a trace of a breakout, in spite of some seemingly comodegenic ingredients (Beeswax is one of the first listed. Odd!). As long as my tempermental skin behaves, I'll trust this makeup's formula! My one complaint lies with the included sponge: It isn't very pliable (It reminds me of those tough, dry sponges used for rubbing deodorant marks off of dark clothes), feels a bit rough on the skin, and doesn't blend very well. For touch ups it suffices, but if I was doing my whole face with this makeup, I would definitely use a quality application sponge.
I don't really like this foundation. When I first rubbed the sponge in it, it looked grainy and applied it on my skin and it felt rough like there was glitter in it?? The coverage was light no matter how many layers I put on it looked like I had no coverage at all.
i just got this and this is just an initial review ill get back to it to update but man! i thought spf 55 would be the deal! but for some reason i wasnt expecting it to smell lik sunscreen but it does! its not sparkly lik sunscreen but it definitely leaves a sheen kinda dewy look. ithought it would be lik maybelline smooth mousse but its a lot thicker and a little dryer harder to blend. i had to set it b/c it was stickyish. mmm lol not loving it so far
Concept: Love the SPF 55 factor, and the fact that it offers both 3%avobenzone as well as Helioplex. Most makeup touting an SPF contains both lame sunscreen ingredients as well as lame percentages *of* those lame sunscreen ingredients.
Test 1 of SPF makeup: Both the ingredients and their percentages must be high enough to make an impact if you are depending on only a makeup product to protect you from the sun's harmful rays.
Test 2: The makeup must offer an SPF that's high enough to begin with.
Well, even though the active ingredients & high SPF of the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Compact SPF 55 passes Tests 1 & 2, here's the rub before one gets a false sense of security with makeup containing SPF. You need to consider first how much actual old-fashioned lotion/cream-based bottled sunscreen one must apply to yield the full benefits & SPF stated on the bottle: i.e., a quarter-teaspoon to the face alone. Some derms insist on more than this, but a quarter-teaspoon is a ton & will have to suffice for me. So, be honest here. If you're riding on the SPF in your face makeup & skipping sunscreen as a pre-step: are you really applying this much foundation or powder to your face alone to yield all its sun-protecting benefits?
Moral: don't depend on the SPF in your makeup. At most, this is something I would use if I were staying inside the house all day.
(P.S. on SPF application: another quarter-teaspoon to the neck, & a full shotglass on the body from the clavicle down is required for sufficient protection.)
Colorwise: The lightest shade of this compact almost worked for me, and was a trifle pink. NC15/NW15 are both almost always too dark for me, & L'Oreal True Match in W1 is a perfect match even though I dislike its shiny texture/finish. So that should offer a sense of my coloring.
Finish: I returned this product because it isn't something I can use if Retin-A & glycolic acid are apart of my skincare regime. Like physical-based sunscreens (which Avobenzone/Helioplex isn't!), this compact makeup with SPF just dried out & fries my face due to the Retin-A I use. So, of course the texture wasn't all that hot as a result. I will repurchase this summer when I take time off from the above actives & am just self-tanning to give this makeup a second chance. If the finish improves then, I will up the current 3-lippie rating.
I like the structure and ease of the compact, the fact that it has good UVA/UVB ingredients, and its natural finish. However, this does tend to exacerbate oilies midday and definitely sits in pores. Even though it is a sheer finish, it doesn't really absorb into skin well enough to sit well under loose powder. I noticed that it laid on skin midday and looked patchy especially in oily places and my pregnant winter skin is fairly dry right now. I could see the it in the pores, but that could also be that the colors are not neutral enough. So this won't be an option for the warmer months when the spf & powder will really be necessary. I am returning it.
While I was in Walgreens last night, buying rock salt, I couldn't help but wander into the cosmetics department, and I happened to find this. I had been considering the Revlon Photo Ready compact foundation, but this one sold me on the SPF 55. It was pretty difficult to find my shade, but I ended up with # 40 I figured I could always return it if it wasn't a match. This isn't bad, I used the sponge to apply all over and my Sonia Kashuk multipurpose brush to apply closer to the eyes and to cover in spots. The texture wasn't chalky or anything, despite the high SPF. I set it with Coty Airspun powder and only blotted once during the day, so no oilies for me. But overall, I think I need more coverage. I like an airbrushed, perfected look, and I don't think this is going to do it for me. I will probably use this as sort of a primer for mineral foundations. Unless, of course, the SPF 55 perfects my skin to the point where I don't need anything else. Wishful thinking!!
UPDATE: It's now summer and I tried this again. You have to be really careful because this can look cakey if you don't blend really well. I just looked in the mirror, and it was caked around my eyebrows - yuck! I agree with some others who said that this has a weird texture, like it's creamy and chalky at the same time. I'll use this only for the sunscreen properties, if it doesn't melt off my face, that is. Lowered to 2 stars.
I agree with the comments of the joey_s below.This is a suprisingly good little compact! Additionally, this is and ideal find for those with normal/dry skin. I am not sure how it will do with oilies. It did go on very "wet" and gave a nice healthy glow. The coverage is sheer to medium and buildable if you need more. I used my Sephora airbrush (#55?) and dabbed it into the compact and lightly buffed it in to my skin for a flawless look. It feels great on my dry, winter skin and the color (Classic Ivory 10) is perfect for my NC15/20 tone. I just wish they had more options for gals with deeper skintone. Only downside, I did see that it sank into my pores a little bit and had a slight "plasticy" smell...will update later if my skin reacts negatively.
Genius, Neutrogena! I love this 2-in-1 product for everyday use -- saves me loads of time (and some $ too!). Stable SPF and foundation all in one, less greasy than 55 SPF alone, doesn't slip and slide all over your face, really lightweight. Edit 1/26/11 - Still loving this! I'm truly surprised and impressed with the coverage - doesn't sink into pores as I was expecting it to do, actually looks smooth and covers without looking heavy. I thought the best thing about this product was going to be the sun protection, but it actually is quite a nice performing daily foundation as well! I'm approx an NC 25 and I've been wearing the shade Nude (40). Active Ingredients: Avobenzone 2.8%, Homosalate 8%, Octisalate 4%, Octocrylene 9%, Oxybenzone 4%...Inactive Ingredients: Isononyl isononanoate, silica, beeswax, mica, c-12-15 alkyl benzoate, calcium aluminum borosilicate, styrene/acrylates copolymer, polyethylene, diethylhexyl 2,6-napthalate, vp/hexadecene copolymer, dimethicone/vinyl dimethicone crosspolymere, dimethicone, acrylates/dimethicone copolymer, phenoxyethanol, caprylyl glycol, bisabolol, pentaerythrityl tetra-di-t-butyl hydroxyhydrocinnamate, polymethyl methacylate, triethoxycaprylylsilane, tocopheryl acetate, panthothenic acid, retinyl palimate, ascorbic acid. May contain: titanium dioxide, iron oxides.