An Unexpected Combination | Blogmas Day #5

I am all about mixing foundations. Whether it’s to get the perfect shade, or getting the best out of two formulas, sometimes you just have to in order to find the perfect base. Recently I mixed two foundations that were from opposite ends of the spectrum both in terms of finish and and price-point, and I ended up discovering and absolute gem…

The foundations in question are the Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation (full review here) and my recent favourite Max Factor Skin Luminizer Foundation (also full post here). If you read my posts on these, you can see that these are both favourites of mine, but for very different reasons. The Hourglass offering is perfect for oily skins – it is incredibly mattifying, long-lasting and has great coverage. In opposition, the Max Factor foundation is dewy skin in a bottle, and has light to medium coverage. I have the former in a pale shade for when I am sans-fake tan, and the latter in a much darker shade. 
My tan was slightly faded, so I needed to create my own custom colour. The reason I choose these two was because, surprisingly, they have a very similar texture. They both are slightly moussey and whipped. Once I mixed them together on the back of my hand, and applied it with a Real Techniques Buffing Brush, was when the magic happened. The result was a natural-looking finish – right in the middle of matte and dewy. It also lasted perfectly throughout the day, and stayed looking luminous and fresh. 
I hope this post inspired you, if you don’t already, to start experimenting and mix your foundations as you may just uncover something incredible. What’s your favourite unexpected beauty trick? 


Max Factor Skin Luminizer Foundation | Review

I am a self-confessed foundation junkie. I have way too many sitting in my drawer right now, and I have tried so many over time that I probably couldn’t list them all. It is by far my favourite product to try and its quite a rare occurrence that I actually repurchase as I’m so fickle and always so drawn in by new releases. There’s something about the quest for the perfect base that is quite addictive, and since I’m all about the glow at the moment, Max Factor’s latest release really caught my eye…

The Max Factor Skin Luminizer Foundation is said to contain ‘light-reflecting particles’ in order to create a ‘gorgeous healthy glow’. The concept to this foundation is interesting as it is essentially a foundation with a liquid illuminator mixed in (as you can see by the swirl in the bottle). I see this as slightly gimmicky as when you pump out the foundation it does just look like foundation. I was quite surprised at the texture when I first tried this – it is a lot thicker than I expected, and almost has a slightly mousse-like finish, similar to the Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation (read my review here). 

However, despite its deceiving texture, it feels very light and airy on the skin. As the name suggests, it has a dewy and glowy finish, but I don’t find it overly greasy and shiny looking. I find it looks a lot like skin, and gives the lit-from within, healthy look (apologies for the blogger cliches…). I was worried about the staying power, but I was pleasantly surprised  that after testing this for a good couple of weeks now, this has proved to last very decently on the skin. Of course its not going to last as long as a mattifying or specifically long-lasting foundation, but for a normal (to slightly oily) skin like mine, with a bit of primer and powder, this was absolutely perfect

The only thing I would warn you about if you are considering trying this foundation is the limited shade range. This is absolutely amazing if you have pale skin – when I am tanned (roughly NC30) I am the second darkest shade, Golden. This is, sadly, a common occurrence for budget foundations so I can’t expect too much in that department, but it is still very infuriating how much they limit their consumers. 

All in all, I give this foundation a huge thumbs up. I have been very impressed by Max Factor’s base products recently – I recently posted about their primer (here). Although my quest for the perfect foundation is certainly not over, it is definitely a good feeling to find one I really like. What is your favourite foundation? I always need enabling...

Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream | Review

I never got excited by the BB/CC cream trend when it really boomed a couple of years ago. I had much oilier skin back then, and I honestly saw them as glorified tinted moisturisers, which some probably are. I was much more into matte finish, higher coverage foundations. However, recently my skin has become much more manageable and also slightly clearer, I have become more interested in dewy and light coverage bases. There has been a fair amount of hype around this one – I mean, Lisa Eldridge likes it so obviously I had to try it…

The Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream retails at £9.99 and is available in 4 shades. All Bourjois bases are very limited on their shade range, but comparing this to other BB and CC creams which sometimes only have one or two shades, this is actually quite good. I picked up the shade 32 Light Beige, which I find works well for when my skin is on the more tanned side (roughly Mac NC30). It claims to have 3 pigments of colour correction: apricot for anti-fatigue, green for anti-redness and white for anti-dark spots. It also claims to be extremely hydrating and contains SPF 15.

On first application, I was pleasantly surprised. I was mostly impressed with the colour correcting aspect as it seemed to even out my skin tone incredibly, particularly in terms of redness. It covers well but doesn’t look like you have a whole load of coverage. With other tinted moisturisers or BB creams I’ve tried, they’ve tended just to add a tint to the skin but did nothing in terms of coverage, but this really lives up to its claims of colour correction. I found that it was definitely enough coverage for me for day to day wear, with a little added concealer when I needed it. I also really enjoy it for using underneath other foundations as it creates a really nice smooth and even base. 

In terms of wear, I found this to wear reasonably well on the skin. Seeing as it claims to be a hydrating base, I wasn’t expecting too much in terms of longevity but I found that it hadn’t faded or creased throughout the day, although it does tend to get a little shiny in places. My skin does still get slightly oily, but is dehydrated around the nose, but I didn’t find that it got patchy in those dehydrated areas like a lot of other foundations. Setting this with a powder and/or setting spray seemed to fix the oiliness. 

All in all, I can’t say enough good things about this CC cream. The coverage, the wear and the SPF makes me think that this will be my go-to summer base, and I may even be tempted to buy a lighter shade for the colder months. I really love Bourjois bases and they haven’t disappointed, so if you are on the lookout for your perfect summer base, maybe this is a good option for you.


Loreal True Match Foundation | Review

I have completely hopped on the bandwagon with this one. L’Oreal True Match Foundation is one of the most popular and talked about foundation in the blogging and youtube worlds. I was never that interested in trying it until one of my favourite bloggers Amelia Liana claimed it to be a dupe for my all time fave Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk – read my review here. Giorgio Armani is owned by L’Oreal, so it would be no surprise if the formulas were actually very similar. Now I thought this was a a big claim, and I just had to try it out for myself.

The Claims:

In 20 true-to-skin shades across warm, cool and neutral tones, True Match 
super-blendable liquid foundation perfectly matches the colour and texture of your skin, hiding imperfections with its fine, creamy texture.The result: Flawless coverage

The Verdict:

I was very shocked at actually how similar it is to Luminous Silk. It has the exact same silky feeling, and although it feels really thin in consistency, it provides medium to full coverage. It has that same somewhere in between matte and dewy finish, which makes it look very natural. To my surprise, it looks good in photography, despite the inclusion of SPF 17 (what a random number!), something that the Giorgio Armani offering doesn’t have. 

One difference I have noticed is the buildability. With Luminous Silk I could keep building layer and it would never look heavy or cakey, but I find with True Match that it can head that way if I go overboard. However, it gives a good enough coverage in one layer that I don’t find I need to go in with other layers. I don’t find the staying power quite as good either – it’s still impressive, but my skin doesn’t look quite as good for as long as LS.

Saying that, I still really love this foundation, and at £9.99, it is less than a third of the price of Luminous Silk. This a great foundation in its own right, and has topped the list of my favourite budget foundations. There is a great shade range – there are options of warm, neutral and cool shades. I picked up the shades W1 and W4, which are both great yellow-toned colours, which I can mix or use separately depending on the time of year or whether I’m fake tanned (W4 is very similar to 5.5 in luminous silk by the way). If you’re in the market for a new foundation, and you can’t stretch your budget, then I’d definitely suggest giving this one a go. It hasn’t topped my love for Luminous Silk, but it definitely comes close, which will definitely save me some money!


Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation | Review

Having oily skin, I used to only ever use matte foundations and steered clear of any that promised anything along the lines of a ‘luminous’ or ‘dewy’ finish, especially when going out or being photographed. If it wasn’t for the hype of Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation (£32 here) and everyone claiming it was THE best foundation for photography I would have never gone within a mile of it. 

The Claims:
Capture the glow of perfect looking skin with Luminous silk foundation, an oil-free hydrating fluid with exclusive Micro-fil™ technology. Its lightweight and silky texture glides on seamlessly for an all-day, buildable coverage. 

The Verdict:
What is so great about this foundation is the sheer versatility of it. With one pump and applied with fingers it has a sheer to medium coverage, perfect for daily wear. It definitely is buildable and for a night out or for a day I need a little extra help, I use a brush such as the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush (£9.99 hereand apply thin layers until I reach my desired coverage. The finish is hard to describe – it is not entirely matte or dewy, it is somewhere in between. It looks very natural on the skin and it never looks cakey no matter how much you apply. It also feels very light on the skin – it isn’t like some full coverage foundations that feel like a mask on your face.

But does it live up to the expectations I had for it when I bought it? The answer is most definitely yes. It looks amazing in photographs (thanks to the absence of SPF), I have never had that dreaded white-cast, even with that horrific iPhone flash! The longevity is sensational for a non-matte foundation, I find that it holds up just as well as any matte formula I have tried, and best of all it stays looking fresh and natural for hours, even with my oily skin. The packaging is very sleek and luxurious (they have since updated it from the bottle that I have, with Giorgio Armani in black writing on the bottle and the fashion house logo in silver – even more glamorous!) and the pump doesn’t ever dispense too much product. 

So there is my ode to Luminous Silk. This is definitely holy grail status for me despite the price tag. I would definitely recommend this to everyone and with a whopping 21 shades, a colour match is definitely on the cards. The question is, would you splurge?