I’ll let you in on something: I decided not to return the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation after all. It looks really nice when applied with a damp sponge, and the colour match is great. I waffled on this one for awhile, but ultimately laziness prevailed because I didn’t have it in me to make my second trek to the Eaton Centre in a week to return it. (Torontonians will understand the mental and physical fortitude it takes to make this trip.) Hey, I’m just being honest about the kind of person I am. (The kind who is too lazy to get on the streetcar for twenty minutes. Whatever, I put off making an exchange at Topshop until the literal last day because I loathe the Eaton Centre so deeply.)
In between my review of the Magic Foundation and my decision not to return it, I did something silly: I purchased another foundation (with Optimum points). Yes, I, the person who has steadfastly refused to own more than one foundation at a time, now own three. I ended up picking up NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation, which I chose over Sheer Glow because it swatched better on the back of my hand. Solid decision-making skills.
It’s probably no surprise that I got the lightest shade in the range, Siberia, which is a fair, cool yellow. Between this and the Magic Foundation I’m coming to realize that cool yellows are actually a better match for me than pink-based colours as I’d previously thought. Anyway, I know that finding fair foundation can be a struggle, and it’s worth explicitly noting that these undertones are definitely yellow, so if you’re definitely not yellow, I’d watch out for that.
The texture of this foundation is very interesting to me. It’s thin and watery, which is my preferred texture. Whereas the Magic Foundation stays in a stiff peak when pumped out, the All Day Luminous Weightless foundation begins to spread on the back of my hand immediately. It’s even more watery than some of my favourites, MUFE Ultra HD and Revlon Nearly Naked (RIP). One pump delivers very little product; while I’m normally a one-pump kinda gal when it comes to foundation (seriously, how do YouTubers apply like four pumps of product to ONE face?), I need two pumps of this to cover my entire face.
That said, this foundation is very spreadable. I’ve never noticed that particular quality in a foundation before, but here you can see the part of my face that I’ve managed to cover by dipping my blending sponge into the product a single time:
In case you can’t tell, that’s my left cheek (right in the picture) and my chin. With the tiniest amount of product! Two pumps of this gives me enough to cover my whole face one and go over a few select areas where I prefer slightly more coverage.
The “weightless” part of the name definitely holds true for me: this foundation not only looks thin, it feels thin. I’m not someone who’s super sensitive to the feeling of product on my skin, but this is one of the least noticeable foundations I’ve tried in terms of sensory issues. It’s not tacky to the touch like Rimmel Lasting Finish 25H.
I also think it’s pretty luminous. Here’s the finish I get with it after lightly dusting loose powder all over my face:
One of the first times I wore this out of the house during the testing phase, I went to a Shoppers Beauty Boutique and the woman working there said my skin looked beautiful and glowy and asked what I was wearing, so that’s nice! Despite its luminosity, this foundation feels like it sets quickly and well, which brings me to the last point in its (long, adjective-filled) name.
Does the All Day Luminous Weightless foundation actually last all day? Well, I guess that depends on how you define “all day”. In my experience it reaches the eight hour mark very admirably. After that it breaks down a bit on my nose, which happens to literally every foundation I’ve ever tried because my nose is the only place on my body that produces oil. However, it does wear really well overall; as I always mention, I put my foundations through a lot because I work retail and usually have my makeup on for a good 10+ hours – which includes a lot of running around – before washing it off. So, it basically lasts as long as I would wear it, which is technically “all day”, but not, say, a full 24 hours, which the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner does. Semantics, I know.
Here’s an “after” shot I took the other day – this was after only about 5 hours of wear because I was starting to lose my light (I HATE WINTER!!!), but those 5 hours did include the aforementioned Eaton Centre trip, which had me sweating like a pig because they really crank up the heating in there. (Yet another reason not to go there.)
Random black cheek flakes notwithstanding, I think it’s done a good job here, and I can confirm that it basically looks like this at the end of the day minus my nose. I mean, my nose is still there, but the foundation isn’t. (Also, sorry about the lighting. Like I said, the sun was already starting to set and I’m still learning how to use my new camera!)
Now, this is not a super easy-peasy, slap it on and go product. As with the Magic Foundation, I’ve found that the All Day Luminous Weightless foundation far in a way does best with a damp sponge. On a brush it does make my forehead look pretty dry. Again, someone with combo/oily skin might not have this problem, but I’m assuming that a luminous foundation is formulated more for dryer skin types. I also find it looks better when set lightly with a loose powder as opposed to a thicker pressed powder such as Rimmel Stay Matte.
So, yes, this foundation is a bit fussy. And the reason I really liked MUFE Ultra HD is that it wasn’t fussy. It looks good applied any which way (with basically any brush, with a damp sponge, with my fingers) and it can be set with anything. But ultimately I like the finish and lasting power of the All Day Luminous Weightless foundation better, so it’s kind of a toss-up.
One thing I will say is that I fucking hate the rubberized cap. I know this is a common complaint with NARS products, but it gets messy so quickly, as you can see in the above picture. The first time I opened this foundation I accidentally untwisted the entire cap and foundation flew out everywhere (including my wall and jeans) and got all over the lid and now it is forever ugly. Sigh. At least it has a pump, though.
For those of you who were waiting, breath baited, for a really up-close picture of my chronically crusty nose, rejoice, for here it is:
This foundation doesn’t glide over it perfectly, but it also doesn’t really make it look any worse (at least when applied with a damp sponge), so that’s fine. I’m not expecting miracles here, people; nothing can conquer the nose crust except a lot of oil.
Finally, a side-by-side comparison of my face with nothing on it but brows and moisturizer and my face with only foundation and brows:
There’s definitely a difference, and I think the finish is lovely. I’d recommend this if you want a medium-coverage, luminous but now dewy, fairly natural-looking foundation. If you have dry skin you’ll want to really understand that it is fussy (though worth the fuss, if fussy isn’t a total dealbreaker for you). If you’re on the combo to oily side you might get on with this foundation regardless of the name because it does wear well, but obviously I only have experience with my own dry skin.
As a bonus, I also picked up the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Chantilly (an even paler cool yellow). I don’t use it on blemishes because it’s too light for that (a novel problem!) and because I think putting a doe-foot applicator straight onto a zit and then back into the tube to fester with zit bacteria for months is gross, but it looks great under the eyes:
Is it worth $35 CAD? I don’t know, because that’s a lot of money and I haven’t really run it through the ringer yet. But I like it.
NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation retails for $59 CAD for 1oz/30mL of product, which obviously works out to $59 per oz or $1.97 per mL. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer retails for $35 CAD for 0.22 oz/6mL of product, making it $159.09 per oz or $5.83 per mL. Both can be purchased at Sephora, Murale, or NARS counters.
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