I've been playing with Tom Ford's new Traceless Perfecting Foundation ($80 for 1 fl oz/30 ml) in Bisque 4. I've been testing about a week now and I'm in love. I shared my initial thoughts (and swatches of all 15 shades) last Friday. I'm happy with my selection of Bisque 4 as it matches my skin perfectly right now. After playing with it some more, here are my thoughts:
Color Choice: I was torn between Bisque 4 and Natural 5. Based on the counter recommendation after applying them both (one on each side of the face), I bought Bisque 4 and took home a small sample of Natural 5. I've been testing them both and really could get away with using either shade. Natural 5 is a bit darker and a tad more olive while Bisque is more neutral.
Formula, Coverage, Texture: The new Traceless Perfecting Foundation is a bit thicker in texture than most foundations I use and it gives perfect medium to full coverage. It blends very easily and covers well. Even though it's thick, it doesn't feel heavy on my skin and the finish and feel is very natural. I've tried all of Tom Ford's foundations but have only purchased the Traceless Sticks. My thoughts comparing the three:
- The regular Traceless Foundation (liquid in a square bottle with pump) is absolutely gorgeous on the skin but always looked a bit too dewy and glowy on my skin. It's sheerer in coverage and has a sheen finish while the Traceless Perfecting Foundation is more velvety (but not matte).
- The Traceless Stick Foundation is best used layered over other foundations for more coverage. It's the perfect alternative to concealer for larger areas of the face that need more but isn't quite as dry or pigmented as concealer so it blends easier on the skin.
- The newest Traceless Perfecting Foundation is something I find really does have that perfecting effect. It doesn't give me 100% perfect skin but it evens out skin tone and texture really nicely. It gives medium to full coverage without caking. It stays put and doesn't sliding off. It also looks completely natural.
Application: The first few days I tested this we had a bit of a heat wave in Southern California. It was humid and we also had some rain. Those first few days I found the foundation felt a bit heavy although it stayed put the entire day from morning to evening. It didn't slide off, get greasy or oily as the day wore on but it felt heavy. After playing with this a bit more I've found my perfect combination of product. You do need to use a lightweight moisturizer and good primer to prep the skin (it makes a world of difference). My go-to is to use:
- A lightweight moisturizer like By Terry Gelee de Rose or serum/moisturizer combo like Chanel Le Jour + Sublimage Texture Fine.
- A good primer or base like By Terry Cellularose Brightening CC Lumi-Serum in Shade 3 or Tom Ford Illuminating Primer.
- Then apply the foundation with a good foundation brush, Tom Ford's Cream Fouundation brush is one of the best I've tried. A cheaper alternative I've liked is to use a Beauty Blender by pressing and blending into the skin. The foundation blends in with the skin and stays put.
- Set with a lightweight loose powder like Koh Gen Do Natural Lighting Powder.
Who can wear it? This is a thicker foundation compared to the thin fluid texture of Armani Maestro or even Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet. I would say it's comparable in texture to Chanel Perfection Lumiere but a tad more airy and thicker in texture. I think it could suit a wide range of skin types but if you're on the oily side it may not be the best option for you. For normal combination or dry skins I think this will be perfect.
Packaging: The foundation comes with an interesting twist up pump similar to the packaging of the Illuminating Primer. It dispenses product easily without any issues. I use 2 to 3 pumps to cover the entire face.
Packaging comparisons (review on primer here):
Here it is swatched on my arm:
Many of you have asked for comparisons to other foundations. I pulled out ones I use and a few lighter options I have leftovers of from winter/spring and I also had some samples in my drawers that I pulled out. I tan easily and my skin has gotten darker since spring. I'll put a * next to the shades I currently use:
Set 1 includes:
- Chanel Les Beiges in 20 and 30 (I mix both, review on 30)
- Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet in 20 and 30* (review on 30)
- By Terry Cover Expert in Honey Beige 9*
- Le Metier de Beaute Peau Vierge Shade 2
- Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Bisque 4
- Tom Ford Perfecting Traceless Foundation Bisque 4* and Natural 5
Set 2 includes:
- Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk 5.5
- Giorgio Armani Maestro Fusion Foundation 5.5 and 6.5*
- Tom Ford Perfecting Traceless Foundation Bisque 4*
- Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Bisque 4
- Tom Ford Perfecting Traceless Foundation Natural 5
- Tom Ford Traceless Stick Natural 5 and Bisque 4* (review)
Overall thumbs up. It's something I keep reaching for these days since I purchased it. For reference you can see all 15 shades swatched here. I hope this helps as a guide to help you select a color. If you need a shade match or recommendation, I highly recommend you call a Tom Ford counter. I've found the reps at Neiman Marcus Fashion Island, Beverly Hills and San Francisco to be extremely helpful.