I have been sampling high-end foundations lately – that’s a real advantage over drugstore ones. You can actually try them out over several days. That way you can see if the colour matches your skin, if you like how the application and feel of it, and importantly whether your skin reacts in a bad way to it. Ask the person at the counter to colour match you by applying different shades on your cheek – I have had girls just fling a shade at me saying it was right because they were having an off day.
Obviously I’ve only tried a small selection of the many foundations available. As a bit of background: I was looking for a lightweight foundation that looks natural and has light to medium coverage. I have normal to dry skin.
1. Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua (£32)
This is the first sample I picked up, because Lisa Eldridge, Fleur de Force and miss glamorrazzi like it. When the guy at the counter put it on my cheek I literally could not see anything – so he gave me that shade (B20). This sample lasted me for a long time, about a week. I had high expect ions do this and I wasn’t disappointed. This foundations applies wonderfully into my skin. It gives it a perfected finish and is at the same time invisible. It can easily be used on just parts of your face where your need it (in my case through the centre) and blends with the rest of the face. It feels absolutely weightless. This foundation is pretty heavily scented, but I like the smell.
I think this foundation is perfect for people who have not previously worn foundations because they think foundations will sit like a sticky, heavy extra layer on your skin. I used to think that for years and only ever wore foundation when performing on stage. Never, ever would I have liked to slab on a layer of paint on my skin on a daily basis! Then I started watching beauty videos and everything changed…
2. Lancôme Teint Visionnaire (£36)
I picked up a 7-day trial of this at Debenhams. The girl was in a bad mood and just gave me the shade 02 lys rose without matching me properly. I tried to look up different shades online afterwards – and I must say the Lancôme numbering system is incomprehensible! I did not get it. There are warm and cool shades, but the numbers do not reflect an order from light to dark at all. Apparently 02 is a warm shade – it wasn’t a great match for me but I could get away with it. I think it was also slightly too dark for me. The Lancôme foundations are not scented.
This foundation is heavier and gives more coverage than Vitalumiere Aqua. It does not blend as seamlessly into my skin and gives me more of a feeling of having a layer of foundation on top of my skin. The concealer that comes with it is nice in the sense that it has the exact same colour as the foundation. It was nice for blemishes, but I prefer the super high coverage and staying power of my Vichy Dermablend foundation as concealer. The foundation felt ok for my normal to dry skin.
On the whole I was not blown away by this foundation. It does promise to have amazing skincare benefits, but that isn’t really my priority when it comes to foundation. That’s what my actual skincare is for!
3. Lancôme Teint Miracle (£27.50)
I went back to Lancôme thinking I’d look at all the other shades – maybe they have a slightly lighter and yellower. The girl at the boots counter was much much nicer than the previous one, but she didn’t have any samples of Teint Visionnaire. I said I liked lightweight foundations, so she recommended Teint Miracle as lighter than TV. The shade numbering was the same, equally confusing, but she said that they were actually slightly different between foundations. From looking at my skin she thought I might be a 02 (again). She was wearing the colour herself and she was also yellow undertones for sure. I couldn’t actually see a colour that looked like a better fit for me. She gave me a really generous sample.
This foundation was ok. It felt fairly similar to TV – heavier than Vitalumiere aqua. I couldn’t actually see much of a difference in terms of coverage to TV. However, this foundation is meant to make your skin look glowing, and I would agree that it has more of a dewy finish.
I just didn’t fall in love with these Lancôme foundations, and I don’t think I would spend a lot of money on a product I just liked. Maybe if you have normal to dry skin and like medium coverage foundations that are more on the dewy side, you might like them. If you want something super lightweight, I highly recommend the Chanel one.