Category Archives: Foundation

Physician’s Formula Super BB Cream Review, Swatches, Photos

Physician's Formula Super BB All-in-1 Beauty Balm Cream in Light / Medium

Physician’s Formula Super BB All-in-1 Beauty Balm Cream in Light / Medium

Physician’s Formula has put out several new products for 2013, and I purchased the Super BB All-in-1 Beauty Balm Cream, which comes in two shades, Light/Medium and Medium/Deep.  Usually, when there are two shades labeled like that, Light/Medium is a relatively good match for me.

The PF BB Cream is packaged in a tube with silver holo decorations. I like the packaging, though I would prefer a nozzle rather than a flat applicator.   It comes well sealed – both in a box and with a silver seal under the cap / over the tip of the tube.

Like many BB creams, PF makes many ambitious claims.  The package claims that the BB cream is:

  • smoothing
  • moisturizing
  • protecting
  • firming
  • priming & filling
  • perfecting
  • concealing
  • brightening
  • line softening
  • long wearing

I can’t really evaluate all of these claims (what does perfecting even mean in this context?); I just see it as marketing hype.

In terms of texture, the PF BB cream feels like a cross between a foundation, a silicone-y primer, and a dry oil.  I wouldn’t call it moisturizing, but it spreads easily and is comfortable to wear. I think the texture would work well on most skin types, from slightly dry to slightly oily.  I don’t think it would be moisturizing enough for very dry skin, and I have never had very oily skin, so I just don’t know what types of products work well for that skin type.

The one problem with the texture is that it has a tendency to separate – a little bit of clear fluid will come out along with the BB cream. The clear fluid is easily mixed back in, but I find it quite annoying; I want my foundation mixed. Because of the tube packaging, there’s no easy way for me to mix it up before use.  The tube does say (on the back) “Shake Before Use” – but shaking a full tube of cream does absolutely nothing to mix it up!

PF Super BB Cream - Light/Medium

PF Super BB Cream – Light/Medium
Unblended, mostly blended

In terms of color, you can see that Light/Medium – the lighter of the two shades – is far too dark for my inner arm and appears somewhat orange, which is not promising.  The coverage is medium – I blended it over a light brown freckle, and it significantly reduced the visibility of the freckle.

Here I am without any product on my face and wearing the BB cream:

Looking grumpy because I know it doesn’t match!

It looks better on my face than it does on my arm – perhaps because it’s blended in better, but it’s still too dark and too orange — and I would not classify myself as fair skinned.   If you are lighter than about a MAC NC/NW20, this BB cream is not going to work for you at all.

I have some significant breakouts on my chin at the moment, and the BB cream did a very nice job covering them (and blurring my imperfections generally), so if you are a match, I can see this working well.

So: to sum up, the texture feels nice when applied, but it has a tendency to separate (which may or may not bother you).  The coverage is good, but with only two shades, most people will not be able to find a match.   But, if you think you might be one of the few who this matches, it may be worth a try!

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This post is from Project Swatch. All rights reserved.

Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer Review & Swatches

Kevin Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer - SX 04

Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer – SX 04

I am extremely impressed with Beauty.com right now – I placed my Friends & Family sale order at 9pm on a Tuesday night, selected free (standard) shipping, and received my order on Thursday! I purchased two items – Rapidlash and Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer.  Sensual Skin Enhancer, or SSE, is an extremely pigmented product that can be used as either a concealer or mixed with primer/moisturizer and used as a foundation.

Sensual Skin Enhancer is packaged in a tiny, deep red pot. I love the color!  It’s really very small, but given how intensely pigmented the product is, it will last you a VERY long time.  It’s more pigmented than Hard Candy Glamoflauge – which until now was the most pigmented concealer I had tried. Here’s a photo of me holding the pot of SSE, for scale:

Since I ordered this online, I wasn’t completely sure what shade to get.  I knew I was somewhere around SX04 – SX06.  Members of an online forum I frequent said that SX05 was neutral and SX06 was extremely yellow; since I look best in slightly yellow foundations, I decided to go with SX04.  I also found these swatches online at Beauty Professor – she’s missing 5, but has 4 and 6 swatched side by side.

Here are my swatches of SX04, unblended, blended, and blended/mixed with primer. As you can see, it’s quite yellow, and doesn’t match my arm at all:

Kevyn Aucoin SSE SX04 swatches

Kevyn Aucoin SSE SX04 – Unblended, blended, and blended & mixed with primer

I was pretty skeptical that this color would work on my face, but I gave it a try – and here are the results:

No makeup // Just SSE (mixed with primer) // added blush, brows, mascara, lips

In the first picture, I’m not wearing any makeup at all – you can see that I have residual marks from a breakout on my chin, and a lot of redness. In the second picture, I’m wearing the Sensual Skin Enhancer mixed with Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer all over my face, and extra Sensual Skin Enhancer (unmixed) on the blemishes on my chin.  It did a great job at covering the redness and marks, though they’re not 100% gone – I could have covered them completely, but didn’t want a mask-like look. I’d rather have an imperfect, more skin-like look. And,  as you can see, the color ended up working very well for me, and the finish is lovely (especially with the Hourglass primer mixed in!).  In the third photo, I’ve done my brows (with this product), added Illamasqua Rude cream blush, added mascara & tightlined, and I’m wearing Fresh Sugar Honey tinted lip balm.

I’ve worn the Sensual Skin enhancer several times now – every day since I received it, in fact, and I am really loving it.  It’s not the easiest product to use – while it can be used full strength as concealer, it absolutely needs to be mixed with something if you want to use it as foundation, so you can’t just slap it on and go.  But, if you take the time to work with it, it gives a lovely finish and lasts all day.  So, overall, I’d give it a thumbs up.

You can purchase Kevyn Aucoin products online at Nordstrom and Beauty.com. Be aware that not all Nordstrom stores carry Kevyn Aucoin products – none of the ones near me do.

Armani Maestro Fusion Foundation Review & Swatches

Giorgio Armani Maestro Fusion foundation

Giorgio Armani Maestro Fusion foundation

Giorgio Armani recently released a new foundation – Maestro Fusion Makeup. Maestro Fusion is very different from any other foundation I have tried, from packaging to technology to performance.

First, the packaging – Maestro Fusion is a standard 1oz, packaged in a matte glass bottle. It is unusual in that instead of a pump dispenser, it has an eyedropper dispenser, as shown above.  It seems fitting for a technologically advanced foundation like this one, and also works well with the thin/liquid texture of the foundation.

I’ve heard the texture of this foundation described as as similar to a dry oil.  I’m not really familiar with dry oils, so I can’t comment on that, but I find the texture incredibly smooth and truly weightless.  It’s comfortable and easy to apply, very thin and fluid, and I cannot feel it at all once I have applied it.

In the following swatch, you can see how liquid it is in the left unblended swatch:

Armani Maestro shade 5 swatches

Armani Maestro shade 5: unblended / slightly blended

If I blended it completely, you would not be able to see it at all.  It completely disappears on the skin – the finish is very natural – but still manages to cover.  It does mattify slightly. I would describe the finish as a slightly more matte version of my natural skin.

In the following photos, I have no makeup on the left. On the right, I am wearing Maestro. I have also filled in my eyebrows, put on mascara, and added just a touch of blush.

I also have a close-up of my skin with Maestro on it so you can see the finish:

Armani Maestro shade 5 applied
Armani Maestro close-up

As you can tell, Shade 5 is a perfect match for my skin.  This foundation is supposed to self-adjust to the wearer’s skintone, getting darker or lighter as needed. It’s hard for me to personally evaluate that claim, because  5 is already a very good match straight out of the bottle.  However, blogger Drivel About Frivol tried out a shade that was too dark for her, and it did adjust to her skintone in about 10 minutes.  It’s magic / science!

I’ve only worn this twice so far, but it seems to last very well on me; about 8-10 hours, and I haven’t been setting it with powder due to the matte finish.

Overall, I love this foundation. It’s my new foundation crush; a perfect match, and a natural finish – the two things I want most in a foundation. It is pricey; $62 – but, base products are one area where I’m willing to splurge.

I bought Maestro, an Eyes to Kill eyeshadow, and a Rouge d’Armani lipstick together, and got an Armani GWP that included the Eyes to Kill mascara (which I am loving), so there will be several Armani reviews over the next week or two – you can find all my Armani reviews here.

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Urban Decay Naked Skin Foundation Review, Swatches, Photos

Urban Decay Naked Skin Shade 1.0

Urban Decay Naked Skin Sample

At IMATs this year, Urban Decay was giving out samples of their new Naked Skin foundation – to be released later this summer.   After trying it out for several days, I am ready to review it for you!

One concern I have is that I was matched to shade 1.0 (though it is perhaps a bit light for me) – although I don’t know the number system UD is going to use, 1.0 implies that it’s the lightest, or one of the lightest, shades.  as you can see from the photographs below of my face, I am not particularly pale – if 1.0 is actually the lightest shade in the line, there are going to be a lot of people left out by this foundation line!

EDIT JULY 16 – 


The lightest shade is .5, a neutral/cool shade.  The shades that end in .5 are neutral cool, and the shades that end in .0 are golden/warm – so 1.0 is the lightest golden/warm shade.  After seeing swatches on a couple different blogs, I think I was matched incorrectly at IMATs; 1.0 is a bit light for me, and 2.0 would be a better match, though I’m not completely sure what my best match would be. 

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Here is a swatch on my inner arm:

Urban Decay Naked Skin shade 1.0 swatch

unblended / blended

I really like the texture of this foundation; it’s completely weightless and just melts into the skin.  I also really like the finish – it’s very natural and completely deserves the name of Naked Skin!  On my normal-to-dry skin I could get away without powdering, but I prefer to use a light dusting of powder to increase the wear of the foundation.

I found that it gives light coverage; it evens out my skintone, but doesn’t cover up much – though, I did not try to build up multiple layers, because I prefer light coverage.  I realize it’s really hard to tell from the following photos, but I promise that in person, it really does help even out my skin, and cover up some redness!

Urban Decay Naked Skin before / after

No makeup; with Urban Decay Naked Skin

For reference, I am wearing UD Naked skin, and with contour, blush, eyebrows, and lips done – no eye makeup though.

Overall, I really like this foundation. I like the texture, I like the finish, and for me – I like the amount of coverage.  However, if you are looking for a full (or even medium) coverage foundation, I would not recommend it.  And, I will be interested to see the shade range once the foundation is released later this summer!

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This post is from Project Swatch. All rights reserved.

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Review, Swatches, Photos

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream

A couple weeks ago, the always-fabulous Pink Sith beauty blog reviewed Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream.  She made it sound so good that I immediately went to Ebay and ordered some for myself – my very first BB cream!

The BB cream arrived a couple days ago, and now that I’ve tested it out, I have my own review for you.    First, note the awesomeness of the packaging – not only is this a tube of BB cream, the cap holds a small amount of peach-colored cream blush.   So cute, right?

I really like the color of the blush –  it’s very natural and flattering on me.  It has a silicone-y texture, which makes it easy to blend.

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Cheek Color swatch

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Cheek Color

The BB cream itself comes in two shades, 01 and 02.  Apparently, 01 is quite light and good for the paler crowd; I bought 02 and is an excellent match for me.  Below is a swatch (heavy and blended out; you can’t even see the blended out part because it matches my wrist so well).

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Shade 02 swatch

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Shade 02

When I apply the BB cream to my face, it seems a little bit grey at first, and like it doesn’t quite match. After about 10 seconds, it seems to adjust to my face and becomes a good match.
Click the below photo to enlarge

Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream Applied

No makeup; BB Cream only; BB Cream, cheek color, lips and eyebrows

This BB cream lasts very well on me – when set with powder, it lasted 11 hours on my normal-to-dry skin. I was inside for most of the day, however; I haven’t tested it when outside in hot weather.

Overall, I’m really happy with Holika Holika Peach Girl BB Cream. The BB cream itself applies nicely, matches my skin, and lasts all day, and the cheek color is a really nice bonus!

What are your thoughts on BB cream?

Guerlain Lingerie de Peau Review, Swatches, Photos

image from Nordstrom.com

Although I have a foundation I’m really happy with overall – MUFE HD – lately I’ve been testing out Guerlain’s Lingerie de Peau foundation, and after wearing it for about a week, I’m ready to share my thoughts.

The first thing that is striking about Lingerie de Peau is the scent. Like most Guerlain products, it’s heavily scented.   I don’t mind the scent, but I would probably prefer an unscented or more lightly scented product. If you’re sensitive to scents, this is a product you should probably skip.

The texture of the foundation is light, and although it’s more difficult to blend that MUFE HD, it’s still fairly easy to blend.  I’ve applied it with a brush (the Sigma F80, my favorite), and with my fingers, and it applies equally well both ways.  I’ve read that it has light to medium coverage, but it seems to be more medium on me.  It has and a very natural finish. Since I have normal to dry skin and the finish is very natural, I don’t need to powder this foundation, which is something that I really like.  It feels weightless on my skin.

no foundation; Guerlain Lingerie de Peau

Guerlain Lingerie de Peau lasts all day on me.  It has SPF 20, but doesn’t reflect white in flash photos (the above photo was taken in natural light, but I also took some flash photos just to test).   I’ve heard that it has a very limited shade range, but as you can see, I’ve found an excellent color match; I’m wearing #02.

There are three Sephora stores relatively near me, but only one of them carries Lingerie de Peau in-store (although all three carry Guerlain), so you may want to call ahead if you’re looking for it at a Sephora.  It is available on Sephora.com & Nordstrom.com.

Given that I’m happy with my MUFE HD foundation, and that the Guerlain is pricey – $58 for 1oz – I haven’t bought it yet, but I’m definitely considering it.  I really like it, I just haven’t decided yet whether it’s worth the cost!

My opinions in this post are based on a free sample. This post contains an affiliate link. For more information please see my disclosure policy.