REVIEW: Glam Glow Powermud Dualcleanse Treatment

I’ve been on a major face mask kick lately, so I’m taking a brief break from sheet masks and peel-off masks entirely. As you know, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment to address pores, congestion, and spots; and the Glam Glow ThirstyMud Hydrating Treatment has been great for maintaining moisture, hydration, and suppleness of the skin. Recently, the Glam Glow Powermud Dualcleanse Treatment was released and I just had to give it a try.

As with all Glam Glow products, this mask is pricey. Thus far, the Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment is worth the money and re-purchase.

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The Glam Glow Powermud Dualcleanse Treatment is a “mud-to-oil, gentle, deep cleansing treatment that removes the weekly buildup of dirt, oil, and makeup.” It is formulated to “revolutionize your cleansing routine with POWERMUD™,” which is a “mud-to-oil Dualcleanse Treatment” that allows you to “indulge in a multisensory cleansing experience.” By “uniting the power of mud and the power of oil to achieve amplified deep cleansing,” you’re able to deep-cleanse your skin gently to get rid of “weekly buildup,” congestion, pore blockage, and residual makeup/products. For super clean, velvety skin, this mask is a great bi-weekly option no matter what your skin type is.

The Powermud Dualcleanse “features OILIXER™, which is a custom blended complex of four powerful, rare, non-greasy, and fast-absorbing deep cleansing oils. CLAYTOX™ is a carefully balanced four-clay blend specifically developed to provide an ultra-gentle skin detoxification for a maximum yet delicate cleanse. And PUREIFIER™ is a complex mix of cleansers, astringents, and exfoliators, working in synergy to dramatically purify and condition the skin.”

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What I like to do is to do my usual cleansing routine at night and dry my skin. Then, I apply a thin layer all over my face concentrating on target areas such as my chin and nose. Leave the mask on for 5 – 10 minutes and allow the product to dry. For removal, I apply water to my skin and use circular motions to transform into a Cleansing Oil Treatment. The product will get oily and seem to dissolve, which I like since it feels like I’m purging my skin of the bad stuff. I rinse my face and dry it before moving onto my night time skin care routine.

This mask is pretty heavy-duty and I found it be drying if I used it too much or left it on too long. However, it’s a great weekly treatment for me to get rid of excess build-up on the skin. It feels refreshing and cooling on the skin; but, most of all, I like how after I remove the mask, my skin is so soft, supple, and firm looking. My pores appear to be smaller and less congested; and, redness and irritation are feminized on the skin. I’m really impressed with this mask, but the Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment is still my favorite. The Powermud Dualcleanse Treatment is great to have around especially for the hot summer months when you’re more oily and prone to breakouts.

Retails for $69.00 USD.

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Current Summertime Glow

Glowy, summer time makeup is prettiest when it looks effortless and natural. And, it also helps that it looks and feels light on the skin since the temperature is so hot outside. For me, less is more when it comes to putting together the summertime glow routine. What I like to maintain is proper skin moisture and a subtle glow that will mix well with your natural oils (along with the humid weather).

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Clarins HydraQuench Intensive Serum Bi-Phase
This is the best moisturizer/serum for me currently. But, best of all, it’s perfectly light and fluid for the summertime. It feels like an oil but applies like a moisturizer; and, its effects are that of a serum. I’ve reviewed it here if you’re curious, but I highly recommend it for all-year purposes.

Chanel Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid
For really light coverage and some subtle glow, I’ve been really enjoying my new Chanel Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid. I reviewed it here recently, but it’s definitely worth checking out if you want something light and minimal. This product is really for “good skin days,” so keep that in mind especially if you require more coverage.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette
As my newest gem, I’d recommend the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette for any kind of powdering. While I’m normally against powdering the skin in general, this palette is a great way to have three shades that work well all-year — but especially for the summer. The highlighting shade and the bronzey tone work well together on my fair skin; and, it imparts the most beautiful natural-looking glow without looking dry or powdery. My review here has pictures and swatches if you’re interested.

Shu Uemura Glow on Blush
Nothing is more important that a pretty pink blush to go with the effortless, glowy summertime look. I’m a big fan of the Shu Uemura Glow on Blushes, but this season, the shade “P Soft Pink 324” is my absolute favorite. As an “enhance and glow” kind of product, this blush enhances the cheeks, gives pretty color that’s not over the top, and provides a glow without the shimmer/glimmer/glitter. The pigmentation is on point and it lasts long on the skin. The refill blush will need a separate duo custom case, but the product is totally worth it.

What are your summertime glow essentials?

Chanel Variation Rouge Coco Shine in “89 Satisfaction”

Described to the new “exciting next chapter in the evolution of the iconic modern creme lip color, Rouge Coco Shine Hydrating Sheer Lip Shine provides beautiful, lasting, moisturizing shine in a water-light texture. It glides on for easy application and is available in a complete range of shades, from delicate beiges to dazzling berries, with hints of shimmer to enhance a glossy finish.” The Variation Rouge Coco Shines were added to the regular Rouge Coco Shine range this summer. The Chanel Variation Rouge Coco Shine in “89 Satisfaction” was recommended by Tanya Burr in her May 2014 Favorites video.

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For the most part, I’d say that the Variation Rouge Coco Shines and the Rouge Coco Shines are the same. The packaging, scent, price, and the texture/formula are all the same. What’s unique is the shade in “89 Satisfaction,” which is the first real nude I’ve seen and swatched from Chanel. I may be wrong here; but, most of the nudes I own are quite semi-matte and “89 Satisfaction” seems to be the most watery-glossy nude shade I’ve owned. The color is pretty on and is spot-on for being a true nude shade because it leans brown-nude than pink-nude or peach-nude. It’s not pink based at all, so the nude color you’re getting is pretty nude that caters to your original lip color. Therefore, it’s not nude like a concealer shade.

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I like the color and it looks glossy on the lips so it’s pretty. However, the brown-nude tone of the shade can be unflattering if I apply too much. It could be a great every day shade for those with medium to olive skin tones, and it would really play up the traditional smokey eyes without looking like too much on medium skin tones. I’ve worn it every day and it’s looked great even with natural and neutral makeup; however, for my skin tone, this nude may be too brown for my liking.

Made in France.
Retails for $35.00 USD.

Skincare Focus: Fresh Rose Face Mask & Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask

As a major skincare buff, hoarding skincare products is a specialty of mine. My skincare concerns have changed since my early and mid-twenties, so while my skin is still combination/sensitive, I prefer masks that are hydrating and nourishing these days. Face masks are important to me and play an integral role in my skincare routine. As a nightly ritual, I use different masks depending on what my skin needs for that particular time. My two recent favorites have been the Fresh Rose Face Mask and the Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask. Both do very different tasks and are both worth the investment.

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The Fresh Rose Face Mask is a leave-on mask, while the Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask is mask you leave on overnight and wash off in the morning. While they do different things for the skin, the overall result is similar so you can decide which mask is right for you. Keep in mind that there are alternative hydrating masks out on the market, but I prefer both the Fresh Rose Face Mask and Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask over the Glam Glow ThirstyMud Hydrating Treatment.

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The Fresh Rose Face Mask is a “hydrating and toning mask with a cooling gel formula infused with pure rosewater and real rose petals.” As a “historically romantic and classically fragrant” mask/product, the “rose flower yields a precious oil brimming with nutrients that naturally soothe the skin and stimulate the senses. Infused with 50 percent pure rosewater and an average of two-and-a-half roses per jar, this unique mask restores radiance and suppleness to all skin types. The addition of cucumber extract and aloe vera reduce inflammation and calm the skin, while green tea helps brighten and protect.”

This mask is intensely nourishing and hydrating and works quickly. After my cleansing routine, I apply a relatively thick layer of the mask onto my skin and let it sit for about 15 minutes. Sometimes I leave it on for 30 minutes, but it just depends on my skin and the season. I rinse the mask off and my skin feels so refreshed and soothed. Then, I proceed to apply my night time skincare products before going to bed. The mask is really easy to use but I end up using it fairly quickly. For that reason, this is a pricey mask to own depending on how often you use it. However, the results are phenomenal and worth it. Results are pretty instant, in my opinion.

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The Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask is my first Nude Skincare product. Described to be “an exquisite overnight facial mask to nourish and soothe stressed skin,” I use this in place of my night cream twice a week. Generally, my skin needs this mask when it’s feeling a bit rough, stressed, or irritated. I apply it onto freshly cleansed skin after my serum and let it sink in and work overnight. In the morning, I rinse it off and my skin feels soothed, refreshed, and hydrated. The texture is thick and creamy but blends thin on the skin. It feels lightweight; yet, I feel that it’s coated my skin with goodness.

This “powerful mask relieves tired skin with vitamin-rich fig and softening honey extract. Cupuaçu butter delivers essential omegas 6 and 9 that hydrate and protect, while peptides form a moisture barrier to smooth out the appearance of wrinkles.” This is a great product to maintain your skin since it’s anti-aging and hydrating. I apply a little extra around my mouth and eyes for its anti-aging benefits, and my skin feels so conditioned and good the next morning. I recommend this mask if you’re looking for a mask that does more than just hydrate.

Overall, I recommend both. But if I had to choose one, I’d recommend in investing in the Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask since it does more and lasts longer (a little goes a long ways). While the Fresh Rose Face Mask contains 3.4 oz., you need to apply more of the product each time and it runs out pretty quick.

The Fresh Rose Face Mask contains 3.4 oz.; Made in France; and retails for $58.00 USD.
The Nude Skincare Advanced Renewal Overnight Repair Mask contains 1.7 oz.; Made in France; and retails for $48.00 USD.

REVIEW: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette

During the holiday season last year, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette was big hit, but it was a bummer that it was limited edition and extremely difficult to get a hold of. I skipped on the palette because I knew that it would return, and it’s now available both online and at Sephora stores. Initially, there seemed to mixed reviews about the palette because it’s smaller than it seems; however, since I don’t own any of these shades, I figured it was a good way to have a face palette and it’s great for travel as well.

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This is a “palette [that features] three shades of Ambient Lighting Powder, the high-tech, soft-focus finishing powder that recreates the most exquisitely flattering types of light.” The single Ambient Lighting Powders come in 6 shades at $35.00 USD each and 0.35 oz each. The palette, which contains three shades, is marketed as a “groundbreaking collection of finishing powders that capture, diffuse, and soften the way light reflects on skin.” Unlike traditional settings powders, “which merely cloak imperfections, Ambient Lighting Powder utilizes photoluminescent technology to filter out harsh light and refine the appearance of the complexion.”

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The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette powders “deliver a multidimensional luminescence to every skintone, making it appear softer and lit from within. The finishing powders enhance skin in any type of light, including flash photography. With three universal shades available in the Ambient palette, you can create any desired effect.” Previous to this palette, I wrote a review post on Diffused Light and Ethereal Glow. Because the shades included in this palette were unique to me, I found that it was worth it. I don’t mind that the palette is small since a little bit of it goes a long ways. Also, for me, this is not an every day kind of face palette.

This palette offers three shades: Dim Light, Incandescent Light, and Radiant Light.

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Dim Light is “a neutral peach beige powder that blurs imperfections and highlights the complexion.” It’s shimmery but not in an obnoxious way. I prefer to wear this powder to highlight; but sometimes, I find that when it is applied lightly all over the face, the finish is really pretty and glowy without looking overboard.

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Incandescent Light is “an opalescent pearl powder that brightens the complexion with a celestial glow.” This pearly shade is perfect for all over, but doesn’t do much for me as a highlight. I don’t mind that since I prefer to use Dim Light to highlight anyway. It’s shimmery in a subtle way, but because it’s pearly and glowy, it looks pretty dusted all over the skin. This shade is my favorite in the palette.

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Radiant Light is the darkest in the palette and is “a sun-kissed golden beige powder that enhances the complexion with believable, subtle warmth.” This shade is warm and adds a healthy dose of color to my skin without looking muddy or dirty like bronzers. I wouldn’t consider this a true bronzer since it’s subtle and it’s not designed to contour with. This shade is also shimmery but it looks pretty when applied to the cheeks. I don’t apply this shade all over since it’s my version of a bronzer, but for pale-skinned people like me, this may be the safest way to ‘add color’ without looking ridiculous!

Overall, I love this palette and I understand why people were going crazy trying to purchase it last year. If you’re unfamiliar with Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders, this may be a great way to sample them. It also contains shades that can be interchangeably used to powder, highlight, and bronze so it may be worth your while to invest in it. Powders are personal since not everyone chooses to powder their skin; but, nothing about these powders are dry, matte, or flat so that’s why I like them. So far, within the beauty industry, Hourglass has been unique in creating a range of powders that is designed to ‘adjust lighting’ for the skin. They’ve done a great job, in my opinion, and other brands who have tried to do this haven’t come close. For that reason alone, I recommend these powders individually and this palette.

Made in Italy.
Retails for $58.00 USD.
Item contains 0.116 oz/3.3 g (x3).

REVIEW: Shu Uemura Stage Performer BB Perfector Skin Smoothing Beauty Cream SPF 30 PA++

My latest base makeup obsession has been the Shu Uemura Stage Performer BB Perfector SPF 30 PA++. While the product is no longer available on the Shu Uemura website (for the US), I found mine on eBay. The Shu Uemura Stage Performer BB Perfector Skin Smoothing Beauty Cream SPF 30 PA++ “is a 5-in-1 magic formula for the ultimate complexion. Inspired by vast backstage make-up experience, Shu Uemura unveils BB Perfector, a new generation BB cream that integrates five secret tools revered by make-up artists into one innovative formula.” This new BB cream “combines the latest technologies used for hydrating masks, essences, primers, concealers and illuminators to re-create professional artist’s techniques to create a natural flawless complexion in an effortless step.”

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I absolutely LOVE this BB cream because it’s everything that you could ever want in a base product. A little bit goes a long ways; and, it spreads and blends so effortlessly into the skin. Once it’s on, your skin instantly looks perfected, smooth, and so natural. I can’t tell you how many times people just though I rolled out of bed with good skin, but really, it was this BB cream doing its magic! There’s a slight lingering scent to it but not as strong and floral like Chanel and YSL products. The product is lightweight and feathery on the skin; and, I just love how great my skin looks when I use this product.

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As far as I know, the Shu Uemura Stage Performer BB Perfector Skin Smoothing Beauty Cream comes in one shade and is only available overseas. It’s so inconvenient and I wish some of Shu Uemura’s product were more readily available. However, I still recommend this product and it’s been my favorite for the last two weeks. No other BB cream in my collection comes close to the way this makes my skin look and feel!

Made in Japan.
Contains 30 ml.

REVIEW: La Mer The Oil Absorbing Tonic

Toners and softeners are not skin care essentials for me — unless I feel like my skin really needs it. I tend to use moisturizing or skin conditioning toners as a pre-prep product before I apply additional skin care products, but I wanted to something to specifically address my oily t-zone issues since it’s the summer time. It’s important for me to apply toners that are gentle and non-irritating, but at the same time, I want it to be useful as well.

I purchased the La Mer The Oil Absorbing Tonic, but I admit I was skeptical at first. While I do invest in quality skin care products, I never gravitated towards La Mer’s products because I felt that my skin wasn’t mature enough for it. I was interested in the Oil Absorbing Tonic because of the oil-absorbing powders within the product, and had expectations because of that!

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“The Oil Absorbing Tonic is infused with soothing algae extracts and significantly reduces excess sebum so your skin is rejuvenated and re-balanced. The formula features Miracle Broth™ which infuses skin with precious nutrients, immersing it in moisture and energy.” The toner includes an oil-absorbing powder, so you need to shake the bottle to mix it all together before applying. After cleansing, moisten a cotton pad and sweep gently over your face and neck and follow with your skincare routine. It feels really refreshing on the skin because it feels cooling on the skin. I’ve also noticed that it still helps keep my cheeks comfortable, which are not as oily as my t-zone area.

I also like to do some extra sweeps around my nose and chin before moving onto a serum or moisturizer for the day time.

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At first, I didn’t notice much with this toner. It felt nice on the skin and I liked how my skin felt, but I didn’t notice any drastic effects or anything like that. Effects such as absorbing oil or controlling oil on the skin seemed minimal but not non-existent. After about a week or so, however, I felt like my skin was more balanced but I still had a somewhat oily t-zone. For me, I like to use this during the day since I don’t really care about oil-control at night. I can’t say that it’s made such a huge difference in my morning routine, but I like the way it makes my skin feel so I keep it around for that reason. In general, I think it’s difficult to think that just a toner can control oil; but anything to minimize oiliness is still good enough for me.

La Mer is an expensive, luxurious skin care range so I don’t recommend this product if you don’t need it. And, because it wasn’t a life-changing item, there’s probably other toners out there that provide similar effects. I like this toner but it’s still not better than the SK-II Facial Treatment Essence or the SK-II Facial Treatment Clear Lotion.

Made in USA.
Contains 6.7 oz.
Retails for $75.00 USD.

L’Oreal Voluminous Miss Manga Mascara

Randomly, I was in the mood to try a drugstore mascara and I chose the L’Oreal Voluminous Miss Manga Mascara because of its cute packaging and the manga reference. So far, reviews for this mascara have been pretty decent, so either way, I think it’s worth giving it a shot.

One of my favorite layering mascaras is the L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara because the formula is just wet enough to layer on top of my Japanese mascaras; yet, it’s just dense enough to coat the lashes evenly with volume and not clumps. In the past, I’ve read some reviews where people felt that they needed to leave the mascara unused for a few weeks to get the formula to dry out a little bit. For me, this has never been an issue — but, it may be because I use the product to layer.

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As L’Oreal’s newest mascara release, the Miss Manga Mascara features “the 360 flexor brush to build bold volume with high intensity from top to bottom.” The flexible brush head allows the wand to move and the “joint” gives it the ability to swivel without feeling too loose. The”flexible brush with a unique conical shape…catch[es] those hard to reach lashes with an incredibly even application. The Mega Impact Formula instantly builds oversized volume for 15X lash volume in a flash. Top lashes are amplified and bottom lashes maximized for the ultimate wide-eyed Manga Look.”

I can’t speak about the “oversized volume for 15X lash volume,” but this mascara does give a fair enough volume for my thin, Asian lashes. The mascara is buildable, but it should be layered on to minimize the look of clumps and the look of messiness.

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I think I still prefer the original L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara for my layering product, but the Miss Manga Mascara is great as well. I prefer the mascara for my bottom lashes since it creates a voluminous and fluttery lash effect; it doesn’t smudge or transfer so I like the effect that it gives my bottom lashes. On the top lashes, it layers okay since I always apply my Japanese mascara first. The dense formula isn’t as wet as I like, but this product may work for those who felt that they needed to intentionally dry out the L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara before using it.

Made in USA.
Retails for $7.99 USD.

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Eyeshadow in shade 9

I’m fairly new to the Giorgio Armani makeup band wagon, but I’ve recently jumped on it with recent purchase of the Eyes to Kill Eyeshadow in shade 9. Normally, spending a lot of money on eyeshadow is silly to me, but this shade drew me in and I just had to have it. I’ve noticed that GA has re-packaged a bunch of stuff and the compact cases are much more sleek and pretty (which I like).

The formula and texture of the Eyes to Kill Eyeshadows seem to be buttery smooth and soft; and, I like that they apply evenly and blend out nicely too. However, just to save you some time, I think this shade is really pretty but that’s about it.

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The Eyes to Kill Eyeshadows are “available in a range of bold, vibrant colors inspired by the forces of nature. Its range of matte and satin finishes lend a fierce pop to any look.” The colors available in this range are not that unique, but the texture of the shadows are super nice. When applied, shade 9 looks almost glossy on the lid without looking weird. It’s long-lasting even without a primer and blends nicely with the MAC 217 brush. However, this shade is a lot like the Le Métier de Beauté True Color Eye Shadow in “Corinthian” and the Urban Decay Eyeshadow in “Stray Dog.” Overall, the color is pretty — but if you’re a big neutrals fan, this may not be anything new.

As for the formula, I really like it but quite honestly, MAC, Laura Mercier, and Bobbi Brown make excellent shadows too. I wasn’t overly impressed by the Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Eyeshadows and found them to be good but expensive.

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I’d recommend shade 9 if you don’t own anything like this color. otherwise, I think there are alternatives out there that would be more cost-effective. I think, in general, GA makes great quality foundations and those are worth checking out. I think the lipsticks are great as well. However, I felt really underwhelmed by the eyeshadows and it wouldn’t be the end of the world if you passed on them.

Retails for $32.00 USD.

REVIEW: Chanel Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid

Lately, I’ve been using the Chanel Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid as a light, summer foundation because it provides the most perfect glow and dewiness on the skin. I’m still thoroughly enjoying the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour and it pairs nicely with the All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid. The Chanel CC Cream – Complete Correction Sunscreen is packaged similarly and retails for $55.00 USD. However, I believe that the two products are entirely different — with different results, finish, and texture!

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The Chanel Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid “is an ultra-light, sheer foundation with added sun protection to keep your skin healthy, protected and hydrated while smoothing and evening out your complexion.” It is designed to “enhance all skin types with lasting radiance” and allows the “complexion [to] look fresh and rested.” The “soft focus powder and gel blend together to smooth out skin irregularities and…reduce the appearance of pores.” The concept, to me, is just like a BB cream or CC cream because this product is not quite a foundation and shouldn’t be used as such. The plus side of the Les Beiges All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid is that it keeps the skin supple, soft, and hydrated. The texture is light and creamy, but almost gel-like so it’s blendable and dries down semi-matte. My skin felt comfortable and soothed; but, best of all, my skin looked radiant and smooth without looking cakey or heavy (like foundation can).

Coverage is super minimal; in fact, this is probably the sheerest base product I’ve ever owned. At first, it seems like you’ve done/applied nothing because the effects are so subtle. The soft focus abilities of this product is truly the best part because it looks so natural and your skin looks like skin. The “glow” seems to come from super tiny shimmer particles; but, overall, it doesn’t look like much on the skin.

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I chose the shade N10, which is the lightest shade available and correlates with the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour powder in N10. The shades can be pretty forgiving since it’s so blendable, so I think it will be quite flexible if you tan during the summer. Another great thing about the All-In-One Healthy Glow Fluid is that it’s perfect for the summer time — since your skin will look so fresh and dewy. I think it allows the skin to breathe and just look healthy, so it will be great for the day time or for when it’s the weekend. I’d recommend to pair this with a higher coverage concealer if this is all you plan on wearing. I think paired with a powder foundation, this will be a great base/primer as well. Worn alone — it would be best to wait for one of those “good skin days,” lol. It’s super easy to apply — if I’m not using a synthetic buffing brush, I’m slapping this stuff on with my hands.

I recommend this product and I really love it so far. However, coverage is minimal so it may be a hassle for those who require more coverage. For me, I like it best for its abilities to even out the skin, soothe irritation, and impart a subtle glow.

Made in France.
Retails for $45.00 USD.