Yah-yah-yah, I like my foundations. In fact, I own over 20 (true story!) and, for some strange reason, keep buying more and more of them. So I guess I should admit that apart from being addicted to perfumes and skincare products, I am also very fond of foundations. I'm not very fussy when it comes to them either - I usually only want two things from a foundation: it's got to be mattifying and long lasting.
Today, I'll quick review three of the newest additions in my 'foundations drawer' and we'll see how mattifying and long lasting they are. Or not.
We have: Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup, Shiseido Dual Balancing Foundation and Lancome Teint Idole Silky Mat (foundation):
And here are all three swatched on my hand. For reference, I'm a NC15 in MAC and these are the palest shades of the three products featured. From left to right: Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Makeup in Fresh Alabaster (01); Shiseido Dual Balancing Foundation in Very Light Ivory (100) and Lancome Teint Idole Silky Mat in Beige Porcelaine (010):
First up, a closer look at Clinique and their Anti Blemish Solutions Makeup. Clinique say: "Feels so cool and fresh, looks so natural. Non-irritating, oil-free makeup helps blend away bumps, neutralise redness. Targeted ingredients help treat existing breakouts and keep them from coming back." It's recommended for oily and very oily skin types and it promises a 'natural skin perfecting look'.
My opinion: Firstly, I love the packaging - the squeezable tube - and I love the whole 'anti blemish' promise. I'm in my late 20's now (OMG!) and I still get spots so this was very attractive to me.
The texture isn't too thin or too thick - it's just right somehow, and the shade Fresh Alabaster is a pretty good match too. Okay, it could be a tiny bit lighter but it does look natural on my face so I can't really complain.
The coverage feels light-medium to me. I've read reviews where people have said that this covers everything (scars, blemishes) and I don't really understand how it's possible as even if you try and layer it, it will still not provide full coverage. In fact, when layered too many times, it just starts to look unnatural and sort of settles into pores - no likey!
However, I don't need many layers or full coverage as my skin's quite good at the moment and I don't have to use a concealer - Anti Blemish Makeup gives me the right amount of coverage. It feels really light on my face, and there's a bit of a glow before I powder. But but but... Ladies, if your skin's oily and you're struggling with finding the right foundation for yourself, then look no further! Despite the inital slight shininess, this actually lasts all day and when paired with some loose powder, Anti Blemish Makeup lasts all day without a fail. I don't blot and powder during the day at all (okay, I'm lying, I do powder once - around lunchtime - but it's out of habit, not because I need to) and my skin just looks normal. Not too matte, just normal. Sort of semi matte. It looks and stays normal 'till I take my make up off at night.
Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Makeup ticks all the boxes for me and is my go-to foundation at the moment (though hey, I do still love my Armani Lasting Silk!). I trust it - trust it to last, trust it to keep my skin in check and trust it to look natural.
Foundation no2 is the Shiseido Dual Balancing Foundation. Shiseido say: "This fine textured, long-lasting liquid foundation regulates skin`s moisture balance and minimises shine thanks to its Optimal Balance Network: increases moisture in dry areas, minimises shine for a soft matte look. Visibly diminish pores and evens out skin tone with Prismatic Nanopowder for a natural, flawless and bright complexion. Glides on smoothly and stays crease-free. The Results: a beautifully smooth and glowing complexion that isn`t shiny or sticky. Oil-free."
Sooo.. This is the best match for my very fair skin - in fact, this foundation could do with being a tiny bit darker (ha!) 'cause I think I'm used to wearing products that are half a shade darker than my skin. No, it really is a very fair shade that I'd compare to NARS' Siberia (their lightest shade in foundations, NC10ish).
Dual Balancing foundation comes in a glass bottle, with no pump - a big minus - but you know what, it is an excellent product and out of the three I'm featuring today, this has surprised me the most.
I read lots of negative reviews on Makeupalley prior to writing this and people were complaining how it doesn't last long and isn't great for oily skin etc. Again, I'm not sure what they're talking about, but on my greasy face (yuck!) this lasts for hours and hours and it does actually mattify and stay matte.
I don't have any dryness on my face so I wouldn't be able to tell you how well this product moisturises, but it has got quite a thick texture and dries pretty quickly so I'd recommend this to my fellow oily skinned peeps.
Once dried, it creates a very natural looking finish and I'd say it covers a bit more than the Clinique one - definitely medium but not quite full.
On my oily skin, Dual Balancing foundation stays matte for approx. 6 hours which is excellent. I don't even blot after those 6(ish) hours are up - I just very lightly dust some powder over my face and it looks good again. See the difference? With Clinique I don't have to powder (though I still do), with this I do have to, but it doesn't bother me in the slightest and I'd say Shiseido is up there with Clinique. I only prefer Clinique 'cause at the moment I'm all about lighter coverage. So yiss, another great product.
And last but not least is the Lancome Teint Idole Silky Mat. Lancome say: "Up to 18h hold: a matte finish Teint Idole Silky Mat is made for women seeking a long-lasting perfect looking matte complexion, up to 18h matte finish." They also promise that 'complexion is more matte yet non-powdery: fresh, looking natural and poreless.'
Umm yeah. Lancome and their Silky Mat... Another 'comes in a squeezable tube' foundation. The shade I own - Beige Porcelaine, Lancome's fairest - is a bit too dark for me and I'd say it's more of a NW20 than NC15. I actually feel a bit paranoid when wearing Silky Mat because I feel I look orange and that people can probably tell but I think I somehow - not sure how - get away with it. No one's said anything (maybe they're just being polite!).
Silky Mat is quite a runny liquid that gives a light coverage. Or well, light-medium, very similar to Clinique. If your skin's in quite a good condition, you'll be alright without a concealer. I wish I could say that yes, it is mattifying like it's name suggests, and that yes, it's long lasting, just like Lancome promise, but nope. Silky Mat and I - we don't really get on. We keep trying, giving it another go, trying various primers/moisturisers underneath and the result's always the same (insert a *sigh* here): my face becomes very shiny just after 2-3 hours of applying this and even blotting/powdering doesn't really help. Do I want to and have time to powder my face every 2 hours? Nope. And this is the reason Silky Mat ain't good for me.
The initial finish is beautiful and satin-y but I don't understand why it then sort of falls apart and starts sliding off my face? And how can Lancome claim it can last up to 18hrs? Ho hum.
Silky Mat is a good foundation if you're looking for something with light-medium coverage and your skin's normal, combination at a stretch. I can not see it working for those with oily skin and would recommend the Teint Idole Ultra if you want better coverage and something that will last.
The conclusion: Clinique wins (and may actually become my 'favourite ever' foundation if it keeps being as good as it has been!), Shiseido comes second (although I'll repeat: it is an excellent product) and Lancome comes third (no surprises there).
I've just had a look at my swatches pic and I understand now why Clinique's shade works for me and Lancome's doesn't - Clinique's Fresh Alabaster is more yellow and Lancome's Beige Porcelaine more pink, so with my skin being quite cool toned, Clinique - even though a tiny bit dark - looks *almost* natural on me.
Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup can be bought here, Shiseido Dual Balancing foundation is available here and Lancome (I am sure it will work for you if your skin's not oily) here. Clinique's the cheapest one of the bunch and y'know what, I'd even pay £34 for it (Shiseido's price) - that's how good it is!