I love this foundation!
The good things: the finish is gorgeous, it makes me look like I have amazing skin naturally and doesn't look at all like I'm wearing make up. The coverage is just enough to hide any redness or slight discolourations, but not so much that my skin looks unnaturally perfect (a problem I have with most MAC formulations and the MUFE HD). It doesn't look or feel heavy, yet it does it's job to make my skin look beautiful.
Now the downsides: it tends to look ashy in photographs (which is why I took one lipstick off). I'm not sure if this is a problem with the formula or the colour selection, but the Punjab looks great on me in person and terrible in some pictures (depending on lighting). Second, price, it's $55 in Canada! Ridiculous. It's something I'll put up with because of the quality of the product (and since I don't wear it often, it lasts me forever), but I could do with a smaller price tag! Also I will agree with some reviewers that it does tend to accentuate dry areas, but this is rarely a problem for me as my skin is more on the oily side. Last, the lack of pump is very annoying and it's irritating that Canadians can't even purchase it separately.
All in all though, great foundation, and the best I've tried.
For reference, my skin is:
-Normal to oily, no acne, few discolourations
-Medium coloured (I am East Indian), the tone commonly associated with Northern Indians or Middle Eastern people.
-Punjab (good in person, ashy in some pictures depending on lighting)
-Santa Fe (slightly too yellow in person, ashy in some pictures depending on lighting)
-Stromboli (a little too light, not sure why it comes after Punjab on the spectrum + ashy in some pictures depending on lighting)
-Barcelona (slightly dark in person so it looks heavier, great in pictures)
-fingers: good coverage but sometimes uneven
-beauty blender sponge: looks amazing
-MAC 190: applies too heavy
Hope this helps!
For reference I have dry, dehydrated skin which cystic acne on my forehead. I am about a MAC NC 25, with very yellow-olive undertones. In the past, before I worked for MAC, I'd often got matched to very dark colours like NC40 because my skin is so olive. therefore I owned 34 foundations before I got Nars Sheer Glow last summer (so I was around NC30).
But since working for MAC in 2006 I refused to buy Bobbi Brown, Nars, Illamasqua or any of the others I felt were competitors. But I had heard so much about Sheer Glow, deep inside I wanted to give it a whirl. Whilst in London last summer, I decided to try Nars Sheer glow at Space NK, after all I hadn't worked for MAC for 3 years and a half years and it was only a part-time student job.
I was matched to Stromboli by the SA and it just looked wonderful on my skin! But I was sceptical, because I've often seen products look amazing on me at the store, but once I've taken it home, I've detested the products. Hence why I have an astounding collection. But this time, even my mum was suprised! (and that is something, because she always tells me "its too light, too dark, too cakey, too sheer"). I bought it and I wore it EVERYDAY! But as the bottle was coming to an end and my tan had faded, Stromboli was no longer beautiful on me and I now started to look jaundiced.
I went back to London in October, but this time to Selfridges. I was trying to find a yellow undertone in one shade lighter and I picked out Punjab but when the MUA came over he suggested I should try Ceylan. I looked at it and just thought he was insane because it looked so pale. But he insisted. So he slapped on Ceylan with some custard concealer under the eyes, some Ginger concealer on my hyper-pigmented areas. He set it with the powder foundation in Fiji and put a bit of Laguna bronzer on me with a bit of Orgasm blush. I looked in the mirror and I was SHOCKED! I bought the whole lot!
This foundation was just superb! and trust me when I say this because its taken me almost 6 months to admit on here that this is better than MAC could ever provide me. It was velvety smooth, melted into my skin like butter. Just enough coverage. You could still see my freckles but the redness, the green veins and the purple spider veins - ALL GONE! Something I couldn't achieve with any MAC foundations without plastering on alot of different products. This looked like my skin, but better! But that's only a minor thing. The finish is satin I would say, not dewy and not matte.
With a good primer it can last on me for ages. I was working an 18 hour shift at the hospital recently on call. During the shift I slept, changed scrubs 4 times. Scratched my face many times in wonder about diagnosis of my patients. and WOW! at the end of my shift, sheer glow was still there! Obviously not as good as good as when I applied it, but on my skin it lasted amazingly well.
There are a couple of downsides but nothing you can't fix. I have dry skin and I find it does tend to cling to dry areas but I apply a good moisturiser and there is no problem. There other thing is the pump factor which I understand can be a pain for some people. I was annoyed at the beginning about how unhygienic it was to not have a pump. I bought the pumps and then realised I liked the original "finger over the opening, tipping once and using what you have left on your finger" method because 2 tips or maybe 3 gives me enough coverage. Which leads to my third point, I dont feel this foundation is too buildable. If I try to build a little too much, I feel it can look cakey and defeat the objective. Therefore if I need the extra coverage on the day, I will use my Nars Power foundation on top.
This is the best foundation ever, the love of my life for whom I've been waiting for! It's the only thing I now wear.
I was color matched to Deauville, for reference I am usually an NC25 in MAC but right now I think I'm closer to NC20 because of the winter. I have dry sensitive skin so I thought this would give me a nice dewy glow, and while I admit it wasn't glittery like MAC's mineralize satinfinish foundation, it is definitely NOT a good foundation for anyone with dry or flaky skin. I felt like this covered my redness very well and looked pretty good on my face except where I had dry spots. That was my main problem with this foundation, that it stuck to my dry skin and made it stand out, if it was more moisturizing I would have liked it a lot more. I gave this 3 lippie's though because for anyone with normal or oily skin this foundation will probably look amazing on you, just don't be fooled by the name "Sheer Glow" because it does anything but that for someone with dry skin. I believe I paid about $42 for it, but I will be returning this on my next trip to Sephora.
My HG foundation for beautiful skin. Pluses are: formula, coverage, finish. Negatives: I'm somewhere between Syracuse and Tahoe so I had to get both and mix. Also, bought pumps separately.
I get so many compliments when I wear this foundation. I even have oily skin and wear this during my 10 hour work day. As long as I put Pores No More mattifying lotion under, it's perfect.
This is the most expensive foundation I have ever purchased, but per the advise of many good reviewers it doesn't take much to provide lovely sheer coverage. This foundation feels so light and hydrating on my skin, I hardly know I have it on. It blends really well and seems to last all day at least in winter, not sure how it will be in the heat.
I am very impressed so far. Took off one lippy for the bottle with no pump.
I LOVE this foundation in Siberia. After years and years of searching for a perfect match for my very fair skin, I've finally found it with this shade. I'd estimate myself as probably an NC10 or lighter, and for a very long time now, I had been mixing "darker" foundations from MAC and Illamasqua with MAC strobe liquid to achieve a lighter (and glowy-er) shade. This foundation does all that in one product... glowy (dewy, not sparkly), and finally, the right color for me (pretty neutral also). I have far from perfect skin, and I'm also happy with the coverage from this foundation (I'd call it medium and buildable). The shade also comes in a matte finish, which I have not tried, but the color is just amazing. I spent $38 and some change for this, I believe sephora has it for $42, worth every penny if you ask me. Just a quick word on durability: have worn a month now without problems with it lasting all day. Temps have been 50-75 with humidity. I do have dry skin, for reference. I love, love, love this one. All you very fair skinned gals out there, do yourself a favor and pick this one up now!!
This foundation didn't last four hours on my combo skin. I didn't wear a primer underneath but I don't expect to have to wear a primer under foundations typically. I had a nice glow at two hours and then at four hours my T-zone was way too shiny. Blotted a bit which was helpful though the foundation appeared to separate on quite a bit, and my pores and skin texture seemed to be more pronounced with this foundation. I don't think the Sheer Matte version will be any better. I think this is one of the reasons I wasn't a fan of the Balanced or Oil-free foundations in the past. I have anyways enjoyed the color selection, just need more options. I am a NC20, I choose Deauville over Monte Blanc. I will be returning this to Sephora.
This is by far my favourite liquid foundation (shade: Mont Blanc), it was the only foundation I wore in 2010 and just got to the end of my first bottle at the turn of 2011 (8 months of use) and though I favour a TM and powder foundation for everyday wear at the moment (due to a breakout), I still use this foundation for special occasions and will return to it full time when my skin has calmed down.
The medium coverage finish is dewy rather than sparkly and friends I haven't seen in some time always comment on how healthy I'm looking which is largely down to the foundation. It wears well on my combination/oily skin, doesn't cake or feel mask-like and removes easily at the end of the day. It is expensive at £30-ish but worth every penny in my opinion, drugstore foundations just do not compare, I've already purchased a second bottle and am sure I will buy a third as I've never finished a liquid foundation before never mind bought another bottle of the same.
Loved the way this felt on my skin when i first applied and loved the initial look of it but hate the packaging ( no pump) and it did not last on my skin. Excellent coverage though. would definitely recommend for those with drier skin people who don't usually have problems with foundation lasting.
I wanted a bottle of liquid foundation that would tie me over until I saved up for an airbrush machine and a foundation with no SPF. Many recommended this, so I picked up a bottle. My biggest complaint would be the lack of pump, and it's a pretty big complaint for me. At least in the US, you can purchase the pump separately. In Canada, there is no way to buy the pump. The Nars website only ships to the US and Sephora and Nars counters do not carry the pump - it is online only. So that is a huge fail; the option is completely removed from me. So fellow Canucks, definitely worth noting if it's something important to you.
Other than that, this foundation is a very good one. Not "$55 for 1 fl oz" good, but it's worth a high-ish end price. The coverage is pretty solid medium and can be built up. I found it best to apply with my fingers. I got several compliments about how good my skin looked and how "glowy" I looked - exactly what I was going for! Also, no little shimmers like Revlon PhotoReady - this glows on its own. You don't need very much product which does make the high price tag sting a little bit less as this should last a pretty long while. They also have a shade that matches me very well (Siberia) which is rare as I'm very fair. Overall, my complaints about the product are few, and the ones I do have are not related to the performance of the product at all. Worth trying if you're looking for a beautiful glow and have a chunk of cash to spare.