Okay. I’ll try to avoid superlatives, although I want to use them excessively here. But who knows, when the novelty of Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua wears off… will I still love it as much as I do now? ( I’ll let you know)
I got a sample in B30, which despite being too dark for my face looked pretty good nonetheless. Intrigued I read reviews on here and based on those I ended up getting a sample of Estee Lauder DW instead of Chanel. It’s an okay foundation, it’s just that there’s nothing special about it. Then I found out I read the reviews for Chanel Vitalumiere instead of Chanel’s newest innovation: Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua.
Now Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua is quite the story! Based on the very promising sample I skipped the ‘getting a sample in a better shade’ stadium and boldly got the real thing in BR20, beige rose. This shade matches my skin so perfectly; I have to resist vainly admiring it in all types of light hehe.
LOOK AND DURABILITY
Aqua just blends into my skin and for once, the often hilarious marketing descriptions ring true: it actually looks like a second skin. It is ultra-light, I can barely feel I’m wearing foundation. It doesn’t look like I do either, which is such a relieve after struggling making MAC’s Studio Sculpt work! When royally applying it it’s still hard to tell you’re using foundation. The ‘instant natural radiance’ is there as well. I would say Aqua provides a semi-matte dewy finish. I personally hate to spoil that effect by using setting powder, so I did a little experiment: I tried wearing just Aqua for an entire day. Must say it looked remarkably well after a couple of hours, although I did need minor touch ups. Unfortunately, since we all have to run to catch a bus now and then my face did get a little greasy and so did Aqua. When setting it - with Mac Transparent Finishing Powder - Aqua stays for hours.
The coverage is so so. It looks very light, sheer and natural, meaning that it doesn’t really cover blemishes. It makes minor imperfections hardly noticeable, but I can imagine Aqua will frustrate those with bigger problems such as acne scarring. The coverage is slightly buildable; I tried applying multiple thin layers underneath my eyes, and however my dark circles looked much less apparent, they still shine through. For me, this is not a big deal, that’s what concealers are for.
UPDATE: Although I still use this product, I got a little into ingredients used in cosmetics lately and I'm not entirely happy with the Chanel ingredient list. The high amount of alcohol (somewhere op top of the ingredient list) and the overwhelming perfume are both obvious ingredients you might want to avoid in a cosmetic product you use daily. I'm on the look out for a product that doesn't use these skin aging ingredients so carelessly and still delivers.
I wear MAC Face & Body Foundation in the day and Chanel Pro Lumiere when I go out. I decided to try Vitalumiere Aqua (VA). I expected that it would be different to both but in a good way.
My skin is slightly oily in the TZone but with powdering the TZone I have no shiny issues.
I purchased Beige Sable B30 which is almost identical to Pro Lumiere Cendre Shell 30.
Day 1 - MUA applies VA over Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Daily Face OIL FREE sunscreen and Chanel primer with a sponge. Looks good but by the time I get home (2 hours after shopping) my skin is completely oily all over. Eeeek. Powder, seems okay.
Day 2 - I press tiny amount of moisturiser into skin, apply Neutrogena sunscreen then the VA. At 2.5 hours, skin is horribly oily all over again. Not just the Tzone.
Day 2 - Apply tiny amount of moisturiser, primer & then VA. Same issue as yesterday. In the afternoon I redo it. Just wear it over primer. After 2.5 hours, only slightly oily in TZone.
Day 3 - Apply Neutrogena sunscreen then the VA. Only slightly oily in Tzone at 2.5 hours.
I think depending on your skin type you need to play around with what works best. I certainly won't forgo my sunscreen for it but with just sunscreen under it today, seems okay but certainly not an outstanding product.
Overall I find this product disappointing. It has a slight matt feel when putting it on and I would say it is a satin finish. I was surprised at how much coverage you can get. The amount the MUA put on what amounted to a medium coverage, so it is definately buildable. She said that they were surprised when it arrived in store at the coverage, they were led to believe it was a very light foundation. I have been putting less on.
Chanel states on its website "...... The complexion appears amazingly even, fresh and energized. The skin glows with seemingly nude beauty. As if glowing from within. Bathed in light…"
If you turn your head in the light, you can see a slight sheen (almost like MAC Strobe cream gives but all over your face and it is a light mauve sheen) and for me, it seems to sit in pores I never knew were so visible. It doesn't look radiant to me at all.
My MAC face & body is a lighter foundation but gives me a much better dewy glow (not oily) and even though lighter in consistency (but buildable) makes my skin more flawless.
I have also tried Clinique's Even Better foundation and I would say it gives you a better radiance for a more reasonable price. I haven't repurchased this as I like MAC better.
I really wanted to love this foundation like the Pro Lumiere but for me, it just doesn't live up to the claims. I like the packaging. I wouldn't purchase this product again and now wish I had asked for a sample.
I'm not sure if I will keep using it, the sheen is a bit too mauve for me. Which might not really be that obvious to others but I know it is there and when I look in the mirror and it catches the light....eeek.
I've read that CHANEL is discontinuing Teint Innocence (my HG) and replacing it w/this foundation. I decided to try it immediately, because if I don't like it I'll still have time to stock up on TI before they pull it out of the US market.
First, it's important to note that the blogs that have started talking about this foundation are wrong about a very important feature - the finishes. There are 3 different formulas available & they each provide a unique finish. The categories are: Rosy Beige, Beige, and Ochre Beige. The blogs that I've read have reported that the Beige category provides a dewy finish. This is INCORRECT.
Per CHANEL's site:
Rosy Beige: for an energising & radiance-boosting result (dewy!)
Beige: for a natural skin tone-matching result (NOT dewy!)
Ochre Beige: for a natural result (specially developed for Asian skin)
"Each category offers a range of light to dark intensities to adapt to the skin tone of every woman."
I will first say that this is truly a breakthrough formula. It provides the same sort of coverage as TI, but because of the real-skin finish, the look is different. On me, this really does look like I'm not wearing foundation - it looks like I don't need any. Note: I did not say it makes me look flawless. As a woman of a certain age, a flawless look is also an unnatural, and usually masky, look. So it evens out my skintone perfectly & camouflages the sunspots well enough so that they're just barely noticeable, at close range; thus, a realistic, but *very nice* realistic look. Again - I truly look like I'm not wearing foundation. In this sense, this is a remarkable, cutting-edge formula.
I am NC20 (Cameo in Teint Innocence) and I chose B20 - Beige Tendre because I *thought* this would be a dewy/radiant formula. Wrong. This is as close to matte as you can get without actually being matte. The finish is absolutely a real-skin finish.
This shade (B20) is an absolute dead-on match for my NC20ish, semi-pale w/yellow skin tone. B20 is actually a very neutral shade, with just a slight hint of yellow. I prefer the stronger yellow tone in Teint Innocence's Cameo for neutralizing the pink in my face, but perhaps this new shade just takes some getting used to. I'd like to test the Ochre Beige at some point, as that appears to be much more yellow than the other shades, since it was "developed for Asian skin."
I also prefer the semi-dewy, satin finish of Teint Innocence, as it provides a more polished look. Then again, a *polished look* is not what this new foundation is about - it's about looking natural & real (nicely, though!) - and it does that, as promised! So for times when I want to look completely natural - but still lovely! - Vitalumiere Aqua would be the way to go.
Application: CHANEL site says to apply w/fingertips. No thank you. I applied w/a 187 brush one day, and with a damp BeautyBlender the next day. Finish looked the same w/both methods.
Consistency: Yes, you really have to shake the bottle well, but what I've found is that if you shake it for at least 1 full minute, it's not watery at all. It comes out in a virtual cream consistency!
Fragrance: I know "fresh" is overused on the board, but there it is. It has a fresh, non-perfumey smell. Smells like a light soap to me.
Durability: Lasts all day without setting it w/powder.
Feel on the skin: There is no feel. It is completely weightless & non-tacky to the touch. Feels like real skin w/nothing on.
Hope this was helpful.
Edit 11/19: After using this 3x, I've decided that I prefer Teint Innocence, so this is going up for swap :(
Link below for CHANEL Vitalumiere Aqua site.
(NOTE: Click "DISCOVER VITALUMIERE AQUA" in top right corner of the CHANEL page!)
This is hands down the best foundation I have tried. I use the base lumiere (I think that's what it's called) and it lasts all day. I went out last night and usually when I have a few drinks my skin just soaks up my foundation but it did not budge. I love it on my dry skin, it's so light and easy to apply. It literally glides on. The Chanel MUA used a foundation brush but you can achieve even coverage with your fingers. The packaging is good but you have to shake it before you use it (very important!). I like it that you squeeze it out rather than have to wait for it to ooze out.
I highly recommend. Get yourself a sample from the counter, that's how I fell in love with it!
Vitalumiere Aqua is Chanel's contribution to this year's trend of bare-skin, weightless, light coverage foundations (Dior Nude, Guerlain Lingerie de Peau, Lancome Teint Miracle etc). I've heard that this is going to replace Teint Innocence (which I wore and loved a few years ago), but currently both are available where I live.
This foundation has an extremely light, almost watery formula. In fact, its consistency is more like a fluid moisturizer than a foundation. The coverage is sheer to light, but it layers well, which makes it possible to build up to medium coverage where needed. A pea-sized blob will do no more than even out your skintone, so if you need more coverage in certain areas (like I do) you'll need to layer and/or follow with a concealer. It feels very nice on my face as long as I've moisturized well, because of its weightless formula. No obvious mask-like effect, no heavy feeling, no dry patches, but I wouldn't say this moisturizes well - it doesn't dry me out (my number one concern with foundations), but neither does it add moisture - you have to rely on your moisturizer for that. However, this contains alcohol (so does Teint Miracle, by the way), so it could be drying in the long run.
The numbering system is new and does not correspond exactly to Chanel's old foundations (Vitalumiere, Prolumiere etc.). This introduces three shade groups which supposedly achieve different effects: Beige gives radiance, Beige Rose are matte shades and there's also a single white-based shade for Asian markets. Each shade group features a few colours which range from 10 (lightest) to 40. I got Beige 10, which seemed the lightest, most neutral of the bunch. It's not an exact match because it's a tad too yellow for me, but since the coverage is so light, I can get away with it. I haven't noticed the 'radiance' Chanel speaks of; in my opinion, this gives a natural finish, certainly not dewy and not too matte, just natural.
The staying power is decent, but not stellar. I generally don't have any problems with makeup sliding off, but this fades somewhat on me towards the evening. It's not that it peels off in certain places, it just fades away evenly, and by the time I take my makeup off (usually evening or late night), there's not a lot to take off. I suppose I could try touching up in the afternoon.
The foundation has a tendency to separate in the bottle, and the box states that you need to shake well. Not a huge problem for me, but still a bit bothersome.
Frankly, I bought this out of sheer curiosity - I'm perfectly happy with my Kanebo Sensai Fluid Finish otherwise. I like Vitalumiere Aqua, but I'm not in love with it. I'll use it up, but I'm still undecided on whether I'll repurchase or not. I prefer a little more coverage and moisture in my foundations, but if a sheer, barely there, weightless foundation is what you're after, this is certainly worth a shot.
EDITED March 3rd, 2011. Well, I've been using this for roughly two months now, and it seems like I'm already nearing the end of the bottle. It's hard to tell because the bottle is completely opaque, but the liquid takes a while to come through the nozzle now. I'm rather surprised at how quickly I went through this - especially since I did not use it exclusively. That's probably because I tend to layer it and thus use more. Anyway, IMHO, this is NOT for dry skin - no matter how rich a moisturizer/hydrating primer I use underneath, it feels tight and uncomfortable on my skin within hours. But I have truly dry skin - no shiny T-zone, I never blot or powder at all because I never get oily. It is marketed towards normal to combination, so there's no need to deduct points on that account, I should just read the blurbs more carefully. I suspect the dryness may be caused by alcohol, which is rather high on the ingredient list. Other than that, it is a very nice foundation, as I've already described. I'm going back to my faithful Kanebo Sensai, but I'll give this another go in the summer when I'm less dry. Unless you have dry skin and/or want higher coverage, try this by all means, it is an outstanding product.
Fantastic foundation! Good coverage feels light on the skin does not break me out and makes me look young and fresh.
I bought shade no B30 and it is the most perfect colour for my light olive complexion! At first a little darker but it adjusts perfectly in mins.
It doesn't oxidize and the SPF 15 is a huge plus.
I apply with a brush for a med coverage and fingers for lighter coverage.
My skin is pretty clear at the moment apart from some fading acne marks on the chin.This foundation covers them well and makes my skin look 99% flawless. It doesn'r settle into fine lines or enlarged pores!
Finish is satin .. .Only drawback is that is makes me look oily after a few hours.Note I don't wear powder over it and I have slightly oily skin all over. Also staying power is not perfect!
I like this more than the original vitalumiere, which I found too oily and heavy on the skin but hardly any coverage. Armani LSF, Nars glow, LM oil free and silk creme foundation, EL maximum coverage, By Terry light expert, By Terry veloutee.
Available shades: (Copied from Chanel site)
Ivory Beige ( for radiance)
B10 Beige – Pastel (Pink)
B20 Beige – Tendre (Soft)
B30 Beige – Sable (Sand)
B40 Beige – Desert (Desert)
B50 Beige - Sienne
Rose Beige ( matte shades)
BR10 Beige Rose – Paste (Pink)
BR20 Beige Rose – Tendre (Soft)
BR30 Beige Rose – Sable (Sand)
Ceramic White – Beige Ocre
BO20 Beige Ocre – Tendre (Soft)
I forgot to add that is comes in a plastic squeezable botte of 30mL and consistency is a little watery..You need to shake well. I didn't realize how watery it was when I was trying on the samples alone.. it felt creamier..
This retails for $77 in Australia.
Beautiful coverage, I love it, I can wear it very thin or I can build up to more coverage on my cheeks and chin where I need more. I'm Beige Pastel (BO10) and the colour adjusts perfectly to my skin. It reflects light and makes me look years younger but is still a matte finish.
I just love it because it makes my skin look perfect but doesn't feel or look like I'm wearing anything. It is like a second (flawless) skin!!
Will buy again and again, my new HG foundation.
I bought this in BO20 (Beige Ocre Tendre) because my face tends to get very flushed and I needed something yellow-based to even it out. The bottle is plastic which makes it light and convenient for travel. It's the same size as the UV Essentiel Bottle. Although the bottle is opaque, it's easy to guess how much you have in the bottle because you have to shake it well to mix it (there is a ball bearing in there I think to help this process along).
I used this with the Base Hydratante Lissante. The texture is very light and when applied, dries to a semi-matte powdery finish. It is definitely buildable in terms of coverage and gives me a very natural finish. The weather where I'm at now is hot and humid and I was surprised that this lasted me till the end of the day (I have combination skin). The only touch-up I did before I went out for the evening was using my Eclat Lumiere highlighter to even out the places I had rubbed out (I'm a chronic eye-rubber due to my allergies). I have a line under each eye due to all that rubbing (had it since I was a kid) and to my surprise, the foundation did not settle into it! I usually finish it off with my Poudre Universelle Libre and it looks just like my skin, only much better. I have Teint Innocence in a compact and the Vitalumiere Eclat, both of which I love but this one's definitely my HG right now.
Ok, so I am reviewing this from a sample that I received. I have had problems with Chanel foundation in the past because the shades available in Aus are just not light enough for my skintone. So generally I dont bother looking at their foundation formulas. BUT i was intrigued by the marketing description on this one. It sounded really nice. So when I got a sample of it, I had to try it. The finish is incredibly natural looking, it melts right into the skin. And it appears to be buildable, which is great, because I need a bit more coverage for acne scarring. It is heavier than a tinted moisturiser, but certainly not medium to heavy. Felt nice on my skin as well. It has a nice finish, not overly glowly (which should be great for those with oily skin), and certainly not flat matte. However, on the website they state they have matte finish shades, I have yet to check those out. This sample was in the wrong colour, so I will head to Chanel to check if they have a shade fair enough. If they do [apart from the hefty price tag which kinda puts me off] I would seriously consider buying this. Unfortunately because this wasnt the correct colour match, I cant comment on durability. However, I have hopes for this one! Finally a Chanel foundation formula that I love the finish of!