Edward Bess fans like myself were ecstatic to learn he had his first debut on QVC this past Friday on the Lisa Robertson Show where he launched his new Black Sea Mousse Foundation with Expert Blending Brush (exclusive to QVC.com). I caught the end of his appearance on TV Friday night and by that time, Fair and Light had already sold out. Edward was kind enough to send me samples to try and I was beyond thrilled. Some product information along with my testing experience, thoughts on the formula and color selection.
The Black Sea Mousse Foundation is a breakthrough mousse foundation formulated with anti-aging ingredients inspired by the Black Sea to help reduce the appearance of the visible signs of aging. It has an innovative air-whipped mousse texture that floats on the skin for the feel of wearing no makeup at all, while still providing full coverage with its pigment-rich formula for a flawless complexion in an instant. QVC set comes in five shades, Fair, Light Medium, Tan and Deep (1.5 oz) with the Expert Blending Foundation Brush (prices online at QVC subject to change). In case you missed the segment, you can watch the Video online (click below, models are wearing Light and Medium, Edward demonstrated application of Fair):
I've been lucky to have really good experiences with his Compact Foundation (I use Beige) and his new Complexion Cream (I use Medium, reviewed here). Foundation is one of the trickiest makeup items to find because of color/skintype/coverage matching preferences. I almost never buy foundation without trying first. Since this was a gift from Edward (sight unseen), as I opened my package I kept my fingers crossed.
Color thoughts: When I opened up Medium 03 first and was surprised at how dark it appeared. The next shade down Light 02 also appeared quite dark. I tested both, each on separate days all over the face to see how the color looked. I was relieved to find that these blend out on the skin beautifully and once blended don't look as dark as they do in the pots.
Light is an exact match for my skin, although sometimes that exact match ends up looking a bit too light when applied and blended all over. This can sometimes be fixed by mixing in something darker or setting with a darker powder. Medium is visibly dark on my skin when swiped, but blended out for a pretty good match as well. I wore this and it looked just slightly too dark. So what's my color? I would say I'm in between, but closer to Light which is a 95% good match on me right now. I was happy to find that it does warm up on the skin slightly but doesn't darken or oxidize.
Formula thoughts: The formula is really incredible. Years ago one of my holy grail matte-finish foundations was Chanel's Double Perfection (the one that came in the black squeeze tube). I literally had a meltdown when they discontinued it and was sad they never re-released it. Edward Bess's Black Sea Complexion Correcting Mousse Foundation is the closest thing I've found but better in terms of wear, texture, blendability. The video segment on QVC will show you how well this foundation covers. It's lightweight but gives full natural coverage and dries to a semi-matte finish. You don't need to set with any powder. On the 2.5 days I've tried this I found it lasted well into the afternoon without requiring any touchups. I like that it's full coverage but not heavy.
Brush thoughts: I applied the foundation with the Expert Blending Brush and it really provided perfect streak-free application.
I swatched them along my jawline on a bare face, swatched heavily, blended only a little bit. Light 02 might be a bit hard to see because it matches closely. Note this photo was taken under artificial light which makes my skin look more yellow than it is in real life.
Since it can be hard to gauge the colors, I highly recommend you look at QVC's color chart. I debated what other foundations to compare these to. Formulas and textures can impact the color and blending will affect how certain colors mesh with one's skintone. I picked a few to show, it's not as comprehensive as I'd like, but foundations are difficult for me to photograph accurately. They tend to dry and darken if I don't photograph right away.
I picked the other foundations I have that are creamy pot formulas. Dolce & Gabbana's Perfect Creamy Foundation has a wider color selection but a more dewy finish while the Edward Bess is matte. I've always been in between shades for Dolce & Gabbana and currently mix Warm 100 and Natural Beige 120 (see the Dolce & Gabbana review/swatches here).
I only swatched the Dolce & Gabbana Warm, but added Edward Bess's Complexion Cream in Medium for comparison purposes (that review is here).
I'm overall very pleased with Edward's new Black Sea Mousse foundation. The formula is really best in class with the coverage, texture and blendability. Huge thumbs up. The color selection however is limited, leaning towards the darker side. The formula is melds with your skin so it is possible that you don't need an exact match (these days I've been buying 2 shades in NARS, Armani and Dolce & Gabbana anyways). I do think fairer skin ladies with yellow or olive tones might find it challenging to get a good match. Right now the foundations are exclusive to QVC.com and the lightest shades are on waitlist. I hope that Edward might consider extending the color options in the future. I was really lucky to find a good match in Light.
Did you watch Edward on QVC last Friday? Have you had a chance to try the foundation? If so please share what color and perhaps other brands/shades you use to help the rest of us who are debating whether or not to try.
This post contains a press sample provided without charge for review. For more information please see the About/FAQ section.