Reg: August 2001 Location: Lexington, MA Posts: 2587
Date: August 15, 2004
Price you paid?: $40.00
Hm, let's see, I got this for €31 in Paris, which translates to $37.20 (or thereabouts). For simplicity's sake, let's say $40. It can be bought at meccacosmetica.com for 72 Australian dollars (about $52) so I dare say I got a good deal! It sells in the US at Henri Bendel (the only place I know of) in New York, and I do not know how much it retails for in the US. $40 is very decent (if not on the cheaper side, nowadays) for a high-end foundation. And it certainly beats $100 for the Clé de Peau version, which, having been designed by the same makeup artist (Stephane Marais), is reputedly the same product.
Ok, that aside, this product took a while for me to understand. Mostly, because I don't really wear much makeup during the summer months, when I'm on a weird sleep schedule and refuse to leave the house. But also because it has somewhat of a learning curve. Actually, application is the easiest thing in the world. Dab a teeny, tiny blob (a pea-sized dab will be too much, unless you like a lot of coverage), onto your hand, dabdabdab (thin it out some, otherwise you'll have too much on your finger), and then dabdab onto your skin, wherever you need it. Simple. It's just finger-painting, really.
The trick is to apply as little as possible. Use as little product as possible, thin it out on your hand, and then dab (not rub, NEVER rub, otherwise... well, it doesn't look good) onto your face. It's concentrated, and it doesn't bear heavy coverage (which will look cakey, remarkably un-cakey for a product that gives so much coverage, but cakey nonetheless). You can try mixing it with moisturizer, or using a damp sponge, but that's more work than it really requires. The best method (and the one that yields the most natural finish), I think, is finger-painting.
And the result? My gosh, the best foundation I've ever experienced! Covers dark circles, smooth over uneveness and blemishes, and nary a hint of foundation-ness. The finish is natural, smooth and satiny, like real skin. If you want matte, simply dust a little powder over it to set. It has adjustable coverage (just dab more, if you need to), but... and this is what impresses me, even when it provides ample coverage, it doesn't hide the glow of the skin underneath. Not an idea on how it does it, but it does. The texture is really cool, a whipped cream (which happens to be my personal favorite texture in foundations), and in my opinion, it beats out the other cream foundations on the market. Kevyn Aucoin (SM is more user-friendly as a foundation, for I find KA to be more concealer-like than foundation-like), Sue Devitt (doesn't have a shade light enough for me), Chantecaille Future Skin (very much dislike the shades, and I don't like the consistency), Clé de Peau (very expensive).
It's got cumbersome packaging, a wide-mouthed glass jar (not particularly hygienic), but I don't mind much. I think it could benefit from lighter colors, but of course, I did not check out the P range. As it is, the O0 (the lightest shade in the Olive range) matches me perfectly. The shades are surprising, however they may look, they are more wearable than they seem. Its limited distribution is also problematic, but in a few years, who knows?
Anyway, it's great stuff! Not too expensive (especially considering how little you need), and very adaptable. You can apply as much as you need, where you need it (somewhere between functions as both concealer and foundation, which is really the necessary quality in a cream foundation, imho). It's basically top-quality luxury cream foundation (Clé de Peau) at a great price!