REVIEW: NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30

Perhaps some of you may remember my haul posting not too long ago where I featured the NARS tinted moisturizer. Although I promised a review in “a few weeks,” I jumped the gun because I got excited. To be fair, I have worn this every day since I purchased it in various weather conditions. I also wore it for a few hours on some days and all day on others to test its longevity. Above, is a sneaky photo I took at Sephora while the display was still pretty and virtually untouched. I HATE sloppy and goopy displays.

Before I get started, let me just start off by saying that a tinted moisturizer is NOT a foundation. We, as makeup wearers, should not have the same expectations that we have of foundations for tinted moisturizers. Coverage will always be limited in tinted moisturizers versus a foundation that claims to be “long wearing” or “full coverage.” Another thing I’ve noticed is – just because a tinted moisturizer has “moisturizer” in its title doesn’t mean it will actually moisturize; or, that you can substitute your regular moisturizer with the tinted one. However, all this can vary depending your own skin type and condition.

Packaging is typical NARS-style: a sleek black tube. It’s not their rubbery material, which I appreciate, because then it won’t get dirty so quickly. The squeeze-tube makes it easy to adjust how much product you want to dispense, but I can see the opening gettting a bit messy after awhile. Even now, I always have to wipe it off because I’m just OCD like that. Overall, there’s 9 shades, with my shade – “Finaland” – being the lightest one.

NARS’ website describes the shade “Finland” as a “neutral balance of pink and yellow undertones.” I would say that this is true. It’s yellow enough to balance out the redness on my cheeks and around my nose that I have naturally; and, it’s slightly pink enough to make me not look orange or washed out. For reference, even though I don’t wear MAC on my face, I’m a NW15/NW20 because their NC range is far too yellowy for me. The next shade, “Alaska,” is super orange when blended.

This is a heavy dollop of Laura Mercier’s Tinted Moisturizer in the shade “Porcelain,” the lightest shade in the range. Despite its name, the shade is quite yellow and nowhere near “pinkish” or “neutral.” This color suited me well, but without blush, I looked like I was extra pale and somewhat ill. LM’s TM dries slightly sticky and I get oily quite quickly even if I powder. The coverage for LM’s TM is impressive for a tinted moisturizer, and begins to look messy and cakey on the face at the first sign of long wear, humidity, and sweat.

NARS’ Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer is an “oil-free formula [that] provides a translucent veil of color and sun protection while helping to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation and dark spots in just four weeks.” The site also claims that the product is “infused with lush, naturally derived botanicals and ingredients to immediately helps thirsty skin feel hydrated. Kopara from French Polynesia and mineral rich seawater revive and re-mineralize skin for a softer, smoother, and brighter natural glow. Skin is transported.”

1. The application is smooth with a regular foundation brush and/or using your fingers.
2. There’s a slight clean scent but barely noticable.
3. The texture is thin and gel-like but seems to blend like a cream.
4. Coverage level is light to medium because you can add more to areas that are uneven, but concealer would be necessary to apply over areas that are more severely pigmented.
5. Pore coverage is way better than LM’s TM, but pigmentation coverage is not as high.
6. The finish is semi-matte; powder if necessary but not mandatory.
7. The NARS tinted moisturizer held up well throughout the day in rain or shine. I would recommend that you wear this product on “good skin” days; otherwise, use foundation for more coverage.
8. The added sun protection is nice, but I would still layer on regular sunscreen underneath this personally.
9. Moisturizing properties are okay but not stellar – however, for me, that’s okay since I wear a regular moisturizer during the day anyway.
10. Oil control is quite good and better than LM’s TM; but regardless, I still have to blot at least once throughout the day (as usual).

Item retails for $42.
Final thoughts: Yes, I would most certainly recommend this and I find it totally worth its price. I personally prefer this over my Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer. However, with only 9 color shades to choose from, this may not be a hit for many.

NARS tinted moisturizer will NOT cover dark circles under eyes, raised acne bumps, dark pigmentation such as old acne marks and veins. It WILL even out overall skintone, adjust redness on your face, and provide a natural finish that appears to be healthy with a mild “glow factor.”

Are you thinking about trying out this product? Do you prefer tinted moisturizers or foundations?

*Quotes extracted from
*Pictures taken using CANON POWERSHOT SD1300 IS DIGITAL ELPH (12.1 Megapixels); and Blackberry Bold

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