I really wanted to love this foundation, based on all of the rave reviews online. I tried it in the color Deauville, which was a decent match for my NC20ish skin. At first, I was really amazed with the coverage that this gave - I hardly needed concealer on my undereye circles or acne spots. But, fast forward a couple of hours, and my love affair ended there.
This foundation just "sits" on the skin, and in oily zones of the face, it will wear off in patches. I have tried using with primer underneath, with powder on top; applying with fingers, with sponge, and with brush -- all to the same end effect. It starts off looking great and gives flawless skin, then looks like a hot mess.
Overall, I would sadly NOT recommend this foundation. continued >>
After another morning of trying to make this foundation work for me, I've decided that I really don't like it. I bought it while I was living in Thailand, when my skin was oily, and I had no problems with it. I even bought two colours, one matching me while I was in Thailand, and one I could use after I returned home. However, I can't use this at home. My skin is not extremely dry, it's dry to normal, but for some reason this foundation has a talent for finding dry patches, even those that are not visible to the naked eye, and cling to them. I always end up looking cakey and I always have to remove this foundation after I've applied it because I don't feel comfortable going out like this. For a foundation that is this expensive, I expect a lot more. However, I think it could work well for oilier skin types, as it did work OK for me in Thailand. In addition, a foundation this expensive should come with a pump, it's as simple as that.
Would not buy again.
I love this foundation and will buy it again but why oh WHY does not have a pump on the bottle?
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.