Showing posts with label Foundation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Foundation. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Tom Ford Traceless Perfecting Foundation Bisque 4 Review

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:
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:

Set 2 includes:

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.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Tom Ford Beauty Traceless Perfecting Foundation SPF15 Swatches

Tom Ford Beauty has released some exciting releases this fall. The first installment includes a new foundation called Traceless Perfecting Foundation ($80 for 1 fl oz, 15 shades) and a cover up Concealing Pen ($52 each, 6 shades). I met up earlier this week with the lovely Beauty Professor for lunch and some beauty shopping. We were thrilled to find both the Perfecting Foundation and Concealer Pens had arrived at the counters and immediately started playing with the new product (be sure to check her comprehensive swatches and descriptions here.)

Having both fallen in love with many things Tom Ford, our first question was, "are the shades of the new Traceless Perfecting the same as the Traceless and Traceless Stick?" I've been matched to both Bisque 4 and Natural 5 for the Traceless Stick and currently match Bisque 4 best. I've tried the original Traceless Foundation and while it gives a beautiful flawless coverage (especially with the Cream Foundation Brush which is amazing), and while it's a lovely lightweight smooth finish foundation with beautiful coverage, I always found it slightly too dewy for my taste.

With the new Traceless Perfecting Foundation, I found myself torn between Bisque 4 and Natural 5. I tested both colors, one on each side of my face along the jawline. The artist and I felt I could go either way. I purchased Bisque 4 since Natural 5 pulled a bit more yellow and olive on my skin (but I got a sample of it just to test at home).

I've been testing both shades for a couple days. I'll have a more detailed review with comparison swatches to other foundations I own but I have swatches of all the shades to share. These were taken with my iPhone and it was very bright yet a bit cloudy outside giving a slighty yellow/warm cast to the swatches. The best shot were the ones in the shade.


Set One includes Cream 1, Ivory 2, Fawn 3, Bisque 4, Natural 5, Sable 6, Rosewood 6.5 and Tawny 7. All of these are yellow/olive with the exception of Rosewood 6.5 which is pink.


Set Two includes Caramel 8, Sienna 9, Warm Almond 11, Chestnut 12, Buff 13, Linen 14 and Bare Beige 15. I added Bisque 4 as well since some of the higher numbers don't correspond with darker shades like you might expect. Buff/Linen and Bare Beige have more pinkish tones compared to Ivory/Fawn and Bisque.

I'm overall really pleased with this new foundation. I had been contemplating the Traceless for quite some time due to the perfect coverage it gives but I'm glad I waited. The new Traceless Perfecting Foundation has a bit more coverage but still looks very natural. It has smooth coverage and evens out the skin tone and lasts quite well through warm humid weather, although Southern California is probably considered very mild compared to other areas.

More thoughts to come soon with a full detailed review, but after testing both Bisque and Natural, I'm happy I went with the Bisque (for Chanel I usually use the 30 foundations). Natural also is good match but leans just slightly olive and is a hair darker. Based on my sample that I've been testing I can say I really could have gone with either shade. The $80 price tag is very steep and I am relieved to report that I do love this foundation enough to justify the price.

For a quick comparison on textures of the different Tom Ford Foundations and the two shades I tested, here are the Bisque 4 and Natural 5 lined up with the Traceless Perfecting (new one), Traceless, and Traceless Stick. I think this shows the slightly dewy texture of the Traceless.

Note the liquids in Bisque 4 are lighter than the liquids in Natural 5. However, the stick in Bisque 4 is darker than the stick in Natural 5 (more swatches/review here).

The Traceless Perfecting Foundation comes with SPF15 and retails at $80 (this is the most I've ever spent on foundation, when I purchased the sticks they were priced at $78 and I think the prices just went up). The Traceless Perfecting Foundation comes in 15 shades, I'm glad to see a diverse range of colors and those with pink undertones will be happy to see some options that aren't yellow-based.

You can find the Tom Ford Perfecting Foundation now at Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Fluid No. 30

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Fluid ($45 for 30 ml/1 fl oz) is a tinted cream that comes in a beige squeeze tube. It has been released in several shades similar to the Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Powders. There are currently five shades in the US in 10, 20, 30, 40 and 60 (not sure if we will get shade 50). The US version comes with SPF 15 with the active ingredients listed as Octinoxate 2.5% and Titanium Dioxide 6.4%. I swatched both No. 20 and 30 at the counters on my hand and fell somewhere in between. The artist at the counter matched me to the darker end with No. 30 - he described this as a glow product that was designed to give a sheer wash of tinted color to the face to make it look like it has more color.

On my face it did not look impressive upon first application. It has a very sheer coverage and almost disappeared into my skin. However similar to the Sheer Colour Powders, you need to let this sit on the skin for a minute and then you will see it really give your entire face a healthy luminous glow (no shimmer, just glow). I've applied with fingers and the Chanel Foundation brush at home this week. My skin isn't at it's best right now so I find the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Fluid doesn't give enough coverage to cover imperfections. It does make a good natural base - I need to layer on concealer or a heavier foundation on the cheeks and chin areas. Once my skin improves I do see this as a good every-day tinted product.

I find this wears quite well, it lasts all day and stays put without getting greasy or sliding off even though it has a slightly dewy finish. I've been wearing this in conjunction with the Ole Henriksen Truth Serum and Sheer Transformation Moisturizer. I then layer Tom Ford Foundation Stick and Cle de Peau Concealer on top and finish with Koh Gen Do Loose Natural Powder.

 More views of the packaging and size:

I usually fall within the Chanel 30 range for foundations. Swatching it compared to other formulas shows that the Les Beiges Healthy Glow Fluid No. 30 is quite a bit darker than the other No. 30s. The sheer texture makes this formula more forgiving, blending it on make it match my skin well. I probably could have gotten away with either 20 or 30, however as warmer sunny weather approaches, the artist recommended I go with the 30 so I could wear it through summer. I did some photograph testing at home, the Les Beiges Fluid photographs really well.

Comparing coverage and texture to other foundations, I would say the Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid is most similar to Edward Bess Ultra Dewy Complexion Perfector (review here). If you have sensitive skin that can react to Chanel foundations or the SPF but want a good glow evening base or tinted product that isn't too sheer, go with the Edward Bess.

Compared to other Chanel Foundations, the Les Beiges is more glowy with a more transparent finish. Others provide a lot more coverage and you can probably use this in conjunction with other formulas for layering. I definitely need to add other foundations on top of this for more coverage along with a dusting of powder.

Swatch comparisons to some other foundations I have. I don't use all right now, some are from winter or earlier months when I was lighter in color. I'll link previous reviews in case you want to read more about the formulas.

Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua B30 (too light for me now), Perfection Lumiere Velvet B30 (good match for me now), Edward Bess Complexion Perfector in Medium 02 (perfect match now), Chanel Perfection Lumiere in 30 Beige (a tad too light for me), Tom Ford Foundation Stick in Natural 05 and Bisque 04 (I use bisque now).

I've been testing this since Saturday and so far no reactions or break outs from this. It does have a noticeable fragrance similar to the Les Beiges powders and the Hydramax skincare line. I don't find the fragrance irritating for my sensitive skin but I know others have mentioned to me that their skins couldn't handle the formula. Ingredients listed below. (Click for larger viewing.)

If I were to rate this on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the high), I would give this an 8.5. I love the way it gives a good healthy glow. I would have liked it to have a bit more coverage, a bit more olive for my skin or a better match. It does blend out to a flawless finish and the sheer texture makes the color more forgiving. The warmth in this is what helps give the skin a bit of healthy color for that perfect summer glow. Often times I end up purchasing two shades of foundation to mix for a perfect match, I wasn't sure if I wanted to buy both the 20 and 30 since the coverage is so sheer. At this time I'm still undecided, I'll investigate when I check out the lighter multi-color powder in person.

If you have near perfect skin or just prefer sheer coverage (but not invisible) this is a good everyday product for you to wear with a sheer dusting of powder. If you're like me and don't have perfect skin this is still a good base product to give a healthy glow. Layering this under other foundations will give your face a healthy natural glow from within look without the shimmer or frost that other illuminating products give (I love shimmer but I know many of you do not).

Did you purchase the Les Beiges Healthy Glow fluid or the powders? Do you find they run dark or close to your normal Chanel shade? If you can comment on your skin tone matches and experiences that would be awesome for those who can't get to a counter easily to test in person.

Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Fluids retail for $45 each. Available now at Nordstrom, Saks and Neiman Marcus.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Chanel Perfection Lumière Velvet | Smooth-Effect Makeup

Chanel Perfection Lumière Velvet ($45 for 30 ml/1 fl oz) is the latest foundation formula from Chanel. It's described as a lightweight, oil-free fluid foundation that provides a long-lasting matte-velvet finish. It has what Chanel calls "soft-focus pigments" which smooth and perfect the skin for a flawless look that lasts all day. It comes in a sleek black bottle. I was matched to 30 Beige (I'm usually either a 20 Beige or 30 Beige for Chanel). According to the Chanel rep I spoke with at Nordstrom the new Perfection Lumière Velvet is going to replace the Mat Lumière.

The Perfection Lumière Velvet is indeed a lightweight foundation with medium coverage. It has enough pigment to even out the skin but not quite as full coverage as the regular Perfection Lumière. This new velvet formula is designed for those normal to oily skin.

At the counter the Chanel artist prepped my skin by cleaning first with the Creamy Cleansing Milk and then followed with the Hydra Beauty Creme. She tested 20 and 30 on my skin. We decided to go with 30 which was a perfect match. She applied the Perfection Lumière Velvet with the foundation brush and then finished with a light dusting of Les Beiges in No. 20 to set. I loved how the foundation blended on the skin with a smooth no-makeup feel. The Perfection Lumière Velvet adheres well to the skin but still lets it breathe. On my normal/combination this lasted all day long and the smooth velvety finish remained the same from the time it was applied well into the late evening. I like that it's not a full-matte finish which prevents it from looking too flat.

Chanel had some amazing matte foundations back in the early 2000's which they discontinued and replaced with Mat Lumiere (which I hated, I found it did not blend well and caked a bit on my skin). I've since tried to find a good matte-finish replacement, the closest is By Terry's Hyaluronic Face Glow but it still doesn't have the same velvety finish as the older Chanels. This new Perfection Lumière Velvet is a must- have foundation for those looking for a long-lasting natural makeup with a slight matte finish. I find it has been released at the perfect time of year as we start getting warmer weather. The color stays put on the skin without oxidizing. Below you can see how well it blends into the skin and evens out the texture:

I've been using this over a number of moisturizers, I like it right now over Le Jour de Chanel and set with the Les Beiges powder.

Here are some swatches for comparisons: By Terry Hyaluronic Face Glow No 2, By Terry Cover-Expert in 9 Honey Beige, Tom Ford Foundation Stick Bisque 04 (review here), Chanel Vitalumière Aqua in B20 and B30, Chanel Perfection Lumière Velvet 30 Beige, Chanel Perfection Lumière 30 Beige, NARS Tinted Moisturizer in Groenland.

In terms of formula comparisons to the new Perfection Lumière Velvet to other Chanel foundations:
  • Chanel Vitalumière Aqua is sheerer and more lightweight in color. The new Perfection Lumière Velvet goes on smoother onto the skin and also is more fluid in texture. I found it much easier to squeeze out of the tube.
  • Chanel Perfection Lumière is heavier in texture and has more full coverage, I find the Velvet version to work better with my skin, the Regular version was a bit too heavy for me.
Packaging comparisons:

I've been testing this for a week and I've been really pleased with the results. I've always been a huge fan of Chanel foundations (except for a couple formulas) and I highly recommend you check out the Perfection Lumière Velvet foundation. I've had no issues with breakouts or clogged pores with this formula. It blends well, lasts all day and doesn't change color. The velvety finish is natural but still matte-looking.

The new Perfection Lumière Velvet foundations should be at all counters now. Check out Natural N Chic Makeup for swatches of all shades. I purchased mine at Nordstrom. It's also available at Bloomingdales, Saks and

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick | Bisque 04 and Natural 05

Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Sticks ($78 each for .5 oz/15g) are a twist up cream foundation that comes in twelve different shades. I've been using this for over a year in Natural 05 and more recently Bisque 04. For me, this is an exceptional product. I tested this on three different occasions at the Tom Ford counters before deciding to purchase. Each time I had the Traceless Foundation Stick on one half of my face with the Traceless Foundation (liquid) on the other. I worked with a few different artists. I asked if they could pick only one which one would they recommend and all of them recommended the stick.

The Traceless Foundation Sticks are a medium to full coverage foundation. It is a creamy kind of stick but blends out to a flawless streakless coverage. The Tom Ford Cream Foundation Blush is amazing with this in that it buffs out the foundation to a perfect finish without any visible streaks. For me anytime I use a foundation brush I end up having to blend a little with a sponge to erase any streaks or lines. The brush + foundation is really phenomenal and worth every penny. It's on the more emollient side but a little goes a long way and it blends out to a perfect finish for my normal/combination skin. I even like to use it under the eyes as an alternate to concealer. It is a bit too emollient to use as a regular concealer but the coverage can be layered to have a similar effect.

Natural 05 is a lighter color than Bisque 04. Both are neutrals with Natural being a bit more olive/yellow. Natural used to be a perfect match but I got a bit of a tan so the artists matched me to the next darkest shade which is Bisque 04. I'm usually the 3rd or 4th color in foundation lines: Chanel B30/NARS Groenland. It's been over a decade since I've used a MAC foundation (they don't work well with my skin), but I've typically been in between NC30 and NC35. (See all shades swatched at The Beauty Professor.)


I use the foundation stick two ways. One is all over the face mixing both Natural 05 and Bisque 04 together. Sometimes I use the darker color Bisque in the center of my face and blend outwards and use Natural around the edges and blend inwards. Other times I just mix the two and blend. On good skin days I use a tinted moisturizer and then the foundation stick for extra coverage in certain spots.

Here are swatch comparisons to other foundations I have in rotation. Note that a couple of the shades are too light for me now but I still had some left over since I went to the next shade up.

Left to right: NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Alaska, Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua B20 and B30, Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick in Bisque and Natural, Chanel Perfection Lumiere 30 Beige, Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Compact 30 Beige, NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in Groenland.

Indoor lighting without flash:

Outdoors at dusk, with flash:

Overall I find the Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Sticks to be a workhorse staple in my weekly beauty routine. If I were to compare this to other foundations I've tried, most foundation sticks I've tested during makeovers and at the counter left me feeling extremely greasy and oily after a few hours. The Tom Ford lasts longer without getting greasy. I would say it's similar to the Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Compact but works better for my skin with a flawless finish, more controllable coverage. For me I cannot wear the Chanel compact foundation for more than two days in a row because it breaks out my skin.

This is extremely pricey but a little bit goes a very long way. I've been using the Natural 05 for over a year and have not used it up with regular use. Comparing the two Tom Ford foundations, I found the stick to have more coverage and be less dewy once blended. I still really liked the liquid and may eventually purchase once I've used up my other liquid foundations (probably not for a while).

If you've tried Tom Ford foundations - what did you think? If you can share what shades you use to help other readers who can't get to a counter pick out their match I'm sure everyone would be incredibly grateful for your input and advice.

You can find the Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick for $78 each at Tom Ford Beauty counters. Online at Saks, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Edward Bess Black Sea Mousse Foundation with Brush - Light 02 and Medium 03

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 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.

Photos of Light and Medium below, they look really dark in the pots:

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 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.

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