February 24, 2011

Review & Application: Laura Mercier Oil Free Foundation

It's finally happened. Much to my dismay, the latest version of Revlon Colorstay has too much silicone for my skin to take and it broke me out. In despair I turned to the net to find a dimethicone-free foundation and the only viable result made me despair more. 

I mean come ON. Laura Mercier's Oil Free Foundation costs RM169. 

But after a tester not only did not break me out but helped my skin clear up, I bit the bullet and bought the bottle despite the fact that the stuff is damned near IMPOSSIBLE to apply. 

It took me almost two weeks to figure this out, but despite what the site says about damp sponges, the BEST tool you can use to apply this thick, kaolin-infused foundation is a flat top stippling brush. In my case, I favour Elf Studio's Powder Brush. 

Dot the foundation in tiny amounts on one area of your face, stipple it out and buff in lightly. LIGHTLY. Don't do what this girl does: 

Scary, isn't she?
It's very important you apply it in tiny amounts, one area of your face at a time on well moisturised skin or it will dry up and clump and look absolutely dreadful. If you get it right though it looks like skin. Not dewy, not matte, SKIN. With practice I can apply it really swiftly now.

Although this is a a thick foundation, it doesn't feel sticky and heavy. Instead it feels gel-like and powdery. It really is full of Kaolin Clay which makes it "almost like a mask" as one MUA reviewer pointed out. It is high, but not full coverage and can be built up by dotting tinier than tiny amounts on the affected area and gently stippling it out.
At first, I was frustrated with it as even with this method it didn't quite give the coverage I wanted, but as my skin improved, I find I needed less coverage anyway. Woo hoo!

This is what really bugs me. It doesn't wear that long. Not for me anyway. But mid-afternoon I have to top it up with powder foundation. Applying powder foundation with a sponge however is a mistake. A brush MUST be used or it cakes up. It also seems to hate my nose most of all. It just won't STAY THERE.  However, as the foundation doesn't have SPF, using a powder foundy with SPF 20 is a pretty good idea anyway.
Another gripe is that it doesn't help my blush last anywhere as long as Colorstay did. *sighs*

One bonus is that this foundation comes in far more shades than Colorstay (which never matched me perfectly) and is in shades both yellow and pink based. I use warm ivory and am pretty happy with the match.

It's crazy expensive (although one bottle should last 6 months instead of the usual 3) and is by no means a perfect formulation. Lasting only about 6 hours, finicky to apply and occasionally it WILL decide to hate your skin, I wouldn't buy it again if I could help it. There are so many cheaper options out there that are a dream to apply and last forever. BUT alas. I have no choice. It's dimethicone free. It makes my skin happy. And so I will continue to repurchase.


theotherworldly said...

you could try Sue Devitt's 70% Triple Seaweed Gel Foundation :) very natural, lets skin glow through, but very low coverage. It controls oil really well so if you're prone to dry patches, moisturise those well!

Kahani said...

Thanks for the tip! Sue Devitt's not available here but I'll definitely keep a lookout for it. =)

Anonymous said...

Laura Mercier Oil Free foundation does have a chemical sunscreen. Everyone should read the ingredients & not just listen to sales people, what do they know anyway.

Aziajs said...

This was so helpful. Thank you. I can't take silicone either so I am on the hunt for a foundation I can actually wear.