Cover FX Foundation

If you find it hard to get a foundation to match your skin tone, you should check out Cover FX’s range. They recently changed their packaging and had an event to show us their range. When I say, the shade range was massive – it was massive! I’m not talking a white, a black, and a few to make up the shades in between – I’m talking, loads and loads and loads…of white, peachy, pinky, browny…. just so so many! 

The make up artist there colour-matched each of us to our perfect foundation. I was sent away with the Total Cover Cream Foundation (as I like coverage) in N35, the Matte Setting Powder (as I have oily skin) in Medium, to warm it up a little as I still have a slight tan on my body from the summer, and a cream foundation brush.
The brush is gorgeous – it reminded me straight away of the Shu Umera ’18’ brush – the hair is short, compact and densely packed – applying the foundation with it is gorgeous, I absolutely love it – it’s easy to build up from light to heavy coverage using it, and it’s really soft on the face, while being tough enough to make an impact.

The brush goes hand in hand with the Total Cover Cream Foundation. It does come with it’s own sponge in the compact, for on-the-go touch ups, but I have been using the brush when I apply it in the morning. 
Although it’s total coverage, it is so lightweight that I felt like I was wearing next to nothing on my face, and that my skin could breathe. 

The Matte Setting Powder doesn’t leave my face looking at all cakey as some powders can do – it just took the edge of the shine, while still leaving a natural finish to my skin. The area on the lid can swivel round so no powder can escape, which I think is a great design – powder can get really messy, but this minimises the chances!
All in all I have loved trying out this foundation. As a Double Wear convert, it was really nice to try something which gave me the coverage, but with much more of a natural finish, and has opened my eyes to the fact I could actually use products like that. However, my skin is so oily at the moment that unfortunately it only lasts until lunchtime before I have to reapply the whole lot again. It’s very easy to do that, as the compacts are very easy to carry round with me – but sometimes I just want the confidence that it’s going to stay put. That said, my skin is particularly bad at the moment, even Double Wear doesn’t stay long past early afternoon, so on a normal person, I am pretty sure this would look fabulous!
Cover FX is a Canadian company but you can find out more about them on their website www.coverfx.com or buy in store or online at House of Fraser

Clinique Age Defense BB Cream

BB creams are all the rage at the moment, so it was no surprise to hear that a top brand like Clinique was bringing their own version out.

The Clinique Age Defense BB Cream has an SPF30 and helps to prevent the premature signs of ageing with UVA and UVB protectants. It has a very lightweight formula but also manages to smooth the skin and hide some imperfections. It seems to have a lot more coverage than all other BB creams I have tried, but without looking any heavier. In fact, to me, it looks as though I am wearing no make up when I wear it – in a effortless kind of way, not a ‘daaaamnnn, get that girl some make up’ kind of way!

I have quite a lot of scars on my face, and it managed to cover them with ease. At the time of taking the photo below I was having a period of particularly bad skin – apart from the raised spot near my nose, the BB Cream has managed to hide those imperfections.

It wears well through the day without needing to be reapplied and leaves the skin with a nice, naturally dewy kind of finish.

As I am used to wearing a full-on foundation it feels a little strange
to me going out feeling so light in the face, so I have taken to wearing
it for days I’m not meant to wear make up but am not brave enough to go
barefaced – like swimming.

As well as being worn on its own, it can also be used under foundation as a primer to help your foundation last longer – I have enjoyed doing this, knowing that what I am putting on under my (quite heavy) foundation, is doing good to my skin.

It is allergy tested, 100% fragrance free, oil free, dermatologist tested, ophthalmologist tested, Super Gorgeous tested, non-comodegenic and suitable for all skin types. Phew!

It comes in two shades for pink or golden undertones – I used the pink – which is fine for me, but too light (almost white) on my mum who has golden tones – so if you decide to invest, make sure you get the right one for your skin tone.

Clinique Age Defense BB Cream is available exclusively at Harrods and Clinique.co.uk right now, and nationwide at selected Clinique counters from the 2nd March 2012 and is priced at £25 for 40mls.

Keromask Camouflage Cream

I was recently introduced to Keromask Skin Camouflage Cream – a very welcome addition to my make up kit as it’s fantastic at covering up most things – birthmarks, beauty spots, tattoos and scars. I worked on a music video last month where the lead singer had a double – so they had to look exactly alike. I spent an age covering up all the moles on her body with foundation, patting down then re-covering… I just wish I’d have known about this then!

Keromask comes in a 15ml bottle which has a twisty lid which you turn to reveal the pump – a design function I really like. It comes in 24 different shades and is only £14.99 and not only is it useful to those working in the make up industry, but if you have any marks on your face or body that you don’t like to show then this could well be worth a try. You can buy sample kits from their website which will help you to make sure you’re buying the right colour, or if you want to try before you buy.

So, for the big reveal. I borrowed my surprisingly willing boyfriend to try to show you the power of this stuff. He has a birthmark on his back, and a tattoo..

And another tattoo…

Unfortunately I did this in a mostly dark room so I couldn’t tell that it wasn’t properly rubbed in in the last photo until I came to look at them now on the computer! The birthmark – well, you’d never know it was there! The only thing with the tattoos is that you can see the raised edges, but I don’t think it would be very noticeable from a distance.

There are some examples on the sample kit which shows some photos where it has dramatically transformed the appearance of two people…

You apply it as you would normal foundation and remove it with soap and water (or Keromask sell cleansing wipes) it is long lasting and 100% waterproof. For those with sensitive skin there’s the reassurance it’s hypoallergenic and dermatologically tested. We got it off his back using lots of baby wipes and in the end a bit of body oil to remove the remains – so it definitely does stay put once it’s in place!

Keromask is available from their website www.keromask.com

I hope that this will help someone out there – please let me know if you end up trying it and the results you have from it, or similarly, if you’re already using this – please shout! I’d love to hear how it’s working for you.

The Foundation Saga Continues

A few of my readers have been in touch asking what’s happened with Guerlain – would they refund me? I have an update today, so will fill in those that are interested…

You may remember that I took my foundation back to a different John Lewis to the one I’d purchased from, without a receipt? The sales assistant there (Bluewater) seemed lovely – she told me that she would call me in a few days time to see how I was getting on with the samples she’d given me and to book me in for a consultation (this was 3 weeks ago and I am still waiting for that call!) She also told me that without a receipt I couldn’t get a refund, because of John Lewis policy, but if I was to take it back to Watford, where I’d bought it, I’d be able to get a refund.

Watford is a bit of a trek for me so I decided to try calling Head Office first. They were polite but blunt and told me that they would send me the necessary labels to send my foundation back to them, but they would only be able to offer me an exchange rather than refund. This wasn’t the ideal as there’s nothing else I want from them at the moment, but better than nothing so I asked for them to send them – they arrived the following day.

Today I needed a few bits so decided to go to Watford, to take the foundation with me. The SA was on lunch and the manager couldn’t help me so I was told to go away and shop and come back last thing before I was to leave. Once I returned she told me she could only exchange me the item seeing as I don’t have a receipt! Arrghhh! I told her what I’d been told at Bluewater, she said I should take it up with her then as she had told me wrong. In the end I kicked up such a fuss that she rang Head Office herself and arranged for them to send me a refund direct. She said they could have done this in the first place.

So that’s where I’m at. And I won’t be buying Guerlain for a while while I calm down!

The Foundation Quest Continues

Following on from my disastrous results with Guerlain’s Extreme foundation (see earlier post), I attempted to take it back. I had bought it in John Lewis in Watford and tried taking it back at Bluewater. Becky at the counter was really lovely and friendly and explained that without a receipt (arghhhh – where is it?!) she couldn’t take it back, as per John Lewis’ policy – but I could take it back to Watford and get a refund. Great, totally not my way at all! She went on to say she’d have recommended the Lingerie De Peau to me, which is ironically what I’d gone to get in the first place! She gave me enough samples to last me 6 days and matched my skin shade as a 03, just by looking at me, and seemed shocked to see that I had previously been matched as an 02. She said that she’d ring me to book me in to get to the bottom of it and maybe need to tweak my skin care.

I tried the Lingerie De Peau today and 03 is most definitely too dark for me. I felt like the biggest fat-face without any definition and like I had freaking obvious different colour foundation on. Becky had recommended to apply it using my fingers, which I did – it felt nice on the skin, smelt good and had a slight sheen. Due to the bad colour match I felt so uncomfortable, and after 3 hours the foundation had gone completely streaky and disgusting – so that’s that one off the list!

I had been recommended YSL’s Teint Resist, which claims to be oil free, long lasting and transfer resistant. The YSL counter was next to Guerlain in John Lewis, so I had to go to House of Fraser so Becky wouldn’t see! The sale assistant was really chatty and ‘normal’ – she sat me down and colour matched me as a 4, and sent me on my way with a little pot with a few days worth in it.

The finish is semi-matte which translates beautifully as there is a slight sheen without looking shiny. The smell of it is really fresh and clean and it feels great to put on. I was also recommended to use my fingers with this one…..

I felt like this one looked fab – I felt good secretly thinking ‘this is the one, this is it!’

Spoke to soon – 3.5 hours later I looked like this….

which, ok, doesn’t look tooooooooo bad, but how about if I was outside, or in more light, or a different angle?

Slick!

I decided to try it again yesterday, and this time I buffed it in using a kabuki brush once I’d applied it, and then reapplied over the areas that seemed to need it. I used the kabuki whenever I felt I needed a bit of a de-shine and I was impressed. I forgot to take a pic of the end of the day, it definitely lasted longer, and wore in a nicer way. Here it was after I’d initially applied it:

The other foundation I got a sample of was Estee Lauder’s Double Wear. I used to use this regularly but stopped as I remember it seemed so mask-like. I think now that it might have been a case of a bad colour-match and me being a bit heavy handed with my application as the results I’ve had this time haven’t been like that at all.

I was colour matched using a swatch chart like you’d get in a paint shop! The sales assistant matched me as Sand which seems to be a good match. She recommended using a foundation brush, and seeing as I already had the Estee Lauder foundation brush, used that when I applied it. With ‘mask’ in the back of my mind I applied it little by little and built it up – this was the finished result:

It is definitely the most matte of the 3 foundations I’ve sampled this weekend, and my skin did feel tight. I could see that the dry areas of my face were more noticeable so extra exfoliation would be required.

Sunday was a sunny day and I had a job which was outside, with the sun on me, and this foundation held up, I was so impressed! Yes, I had a sheen after about 5 hours but it was a sheen rather than me being shiny – and the foundation was still there! You can see my pores on my forehead (where the Hell have they come from and how can I get rid of them?!), but I think that’s the case with any foundations sadly. I took this shot in my car after my shoot – this was after 5.5 hours of working, being in the sun, running around…..

I feel bad because whenever anyone has said to me they’d like to try Double Wear I’ve warned them off saying that it’s too thick and mask-like and don’t do it! I take back everything I’ve said!

It is the most obvious of the 3 foundations, but it does its job and that’s just what I’m looking for. I will definitely be purchasing Double Wear asap, and if I manage to get a refund on the Guerlain (I’m going to try calling the head office and seeing if I can send it back, or if not will have to trek over to Watford again) will also get the Teint Resist for days that I’m feeling a little more confident skin-wise.

I don’t know if anyone else can relate, but since this whole foundation fiasco has started my self confidence has sunk – I have felt so ugly, like I can’t do my make up, like everyone is looking at me, that I have terrible skin….. but now I feel like I have a solution, that there’s light at the end of the tunnel 🙂

Guerlain Parure Extreme Foundation – Their Answer To Long Lasting Foundation

Constantly on the search for my Holy Grail Foundation, and having heard fabulous things about Guerlains Lingerie De Peau foundation, I headed to my local counter. I asked the consultant to apply the foundation to my face, which she did – but when I told her what I was looking for; something long lasting that wouldn’t make my shiny, while still looking natural, she recommended the Parure Extreme to me. It’s tagline is ‘luminous extreme wear foundation – water resistant – non transferable’. Sounds good doesn’t it? I thought so too.

I explained to the consultant my skin type – combination – it does get shiny throughout the day but is dry in patches and I do get spots, annoyingly. She thought the Parure Extreme would be fine, and applied it to the other side of my face. Looking in the mirror I could see that the Extreme gave me more coverage, so I decided to go with that. The consultant matched me as a 02 Beige Clair, which is one of the palest of the 9 shades that it comes in. The scoop on the foundation from the Guerlain site is:

Water Resistant – Non Transferable – SPF 25 PA++ Radiance that lasts? This is the miracle achieved by PARURE. Its ability to keep the dazzling natural radiance of its colour and matt finish for up to eight hours no matter what happens! Beneath its radiant film, the complexion is matt and natural, imperfections and pores are minimised and the colour remains true. The skin is ready to face all the ups and downs of the day with confidence. True radiance that lasts. 

Let’s see if it’s true shall we?

The bottle holds 30mls of product (more than the Lingerie De Peau), and comes with a pump-applicator, my favourite kind. I squirted 2 pumps onto the back of my hand. You can see from the photo that it’s quite liquidy in consistency. By the time I’d pumped and had got my camera it had already started running down my hand.

The consultant had applied it to me with her fingers, and it recommends that method in the enclosed leaflet, so that’s what I did.

Eugh! QUICK, GET THE CONCEALER AND POWDER!

Slightly better! I used the Sephora Concealer Palette under eyes and on blemishes, and then covered my face with a light dusting of Sheer Cover mineral foundation. I’ve tried a few different powders over this and the results are much the same. Next I applied the rest of my make up:

  • Urban Decay Primer Potion
  • MAC Sable Eyeshadow
  • MAC Smoky Heir Superslick Liner
  • MAC Smoulder Liner (under lower lashes)
  • Diorshow Maximiser Lash Plumper
  • MAC Lofty Brown Zoomlash
  • MAC Hue Lipstick
  • MAC Call My Buff Lipstick
  • Natural Collection SunTint Golden Glow Bronzer
  • MAC Stereo Rose MSF

 I’d like to point out at this stage, that my son was ill today, so I spent it at home, playing nurse to one child, and plaything to the other – hardly a sweat-fest. Beside the odd load of washing, and meal cooking, it was mostly spent on my bum with one eye on a Disney DVD and the other playing with dollies. Being at home was the perfect opportunity to do an hour-by-hour photo. You can see from above that it doesn’t seem to hold much coverage – but kind of looks ok once the rest of the face is done. Not the cakey masked look you get from some long-wear foundations.

I know my lippie has come off, lunch was eaten! The face has gone a little  more sheeny – I like it like that actually, looks a little more natural. If only it could stay like this for the remainder of the day….

Hmm, the light must have changed, I look a different colour! You can see that its starting to build up in beween my eyebrows and the blemishes on my chin are starting to become more noticeable.

After 3 hours it’s starting to get a bit on the shiny side, and the build up on the forehead is becoming more noticeable.

After 4 hours I am uncomfortably shiny. I had to upload a photo at a different angle to try to show you just how shiny I was…

And they said pores will look minimized? Errrr…… nope?!

Five hours after initial application and my face is looking gross. All make up has gone from my chin, my forehead has build up and is shiny, along with my cheeks and nose. Oh, and at this point I’d like to say it definitely isn’t non-transferable. I noticed this when scratching my face and leaving a ‘hole’ in the make up!

Shinyyyyy!

The chin make up has completely gone, as well as the build up on my forehead, deposits are starting to form between my cheeks and nose

GROSS! I’d been wearing my glasses, can you tell!? Chin is free of make up, face is oil-slick-like and reflective, and there are disgusting parts with loads of make up on.

I know most people touch-up their make up during the day, as do I, but I wanted to put Guerlains claims to the test. If I was working a 9-5, I’m guessing I’d be applying my make up around 7.30am – I’d be seriously peeved if by 11.30am I needed to reapply my foundation, especially from one which says it’s a long-lasting one.

Needless to say, I will definitely not be spending another £33.50 (yes, I know!) on this again.

This leaves me still searching for the perfect foundation. What is your Holy Grail foundation? Please let me know by leaving a comment below – I’m desperate!