Chanel's newest foundation left me with a dilemma - something like an approach avoidance conflict. I love the way Perfection Lumière Long-Wear Flawless Fluid Makeup SPF 10 ($55) looks on my skin, but I know after a few days of testing that it's not the right foundation for me. I also know that it's a perfect foundation for 75% of you.
Effortless to apply, with seamless blendability for a naturally flawless effect, this breakthrough foundation is the ideal all-day, everyday formula - suitable for a majority of skin types in a diverse range of 20 shades. Even with 20 shades available, I had to mix two to get the perfect shade for my fair skin. Hopefully, you'll have more luck.
I tried Beige 10 and Beige 20. I started with Beige 20, applying it to my face in the store, then I tried Beige 10. Both looked fine, but there was something just a tiny bit "off" about the shades on my face. Chanel representative Janine Greenberg at Neiman Marcus Tysons Galleria suggested mixing them. That's what she had done on Kathy Shoreman, whose skin tone is similar to mine. She was spot-on. I liked the two shades mixed much better than either alone.
Thursday night, I went to a media event at Saks Fifth Avenue. Loyd Cassler had no idea I was wearing the new foundation (the shades mixed) when he remarked that my skin looked fabulous. I was thrilled to be able to tell him that it was "created by Chanel." I have to admit, Chanel's Perfection Lumière makes my skin look airbrushed, even-toned, and absolutely perfect - except for one thing. It's too matte for my taste. I like to get a little glow from my foundation - a glow that my dry skin doesn't always produce naturally. In order to make this foundation perfect for my skin, I need to mix two shades and also blend in a touch of Sheer Brilliance or Fluid Sheer to add a glow. Using three products to create a foundation is a bit excessive, even for a beauty addict.
Who is going to adore Perfection Lumière? Most of you! It's absolutely perfect for those whose skin is normal or combination. I'll go out on a limb and say that I think those with oily skin will like it too. It resists the daily T-zone glistening that many experience, giving the skin a matte perfection for many hours.
I prefer the coverage of Perfection Lumière to the lighter coverage offered by Vitalumière Aqua Ultra-Light Skin Perfecting Makeup SPF 15, recently the newest Chanel foundation. I prefer a medium coverage to hide the redness in the center of my face and even out my skin tone. The finish of Perfection Lumière is just right. While it adds coverage, it doesn't have a heavy feel. It actually feels weightless - a definite plus. I've been testing it without a primer - just my usual skin care underneath.
There is a slight fragrance that dissipates quickly. I don't find the fragrance distracting at all. It's gone before I can concentrate on it.
Here are two swatch photos. For the photo at right, I applied Beige 20 at the top of my arm, Beige 10 below, and the two shades mixed at the bottom. I put them on with a little paddle, and then I blended them slightly with a foundation brush. I hope you can see that Beige 10 is more yellow on my skin (and lighter) than Beige 20. I like the mixture at the bottom best (for my face).
I wasn't sure you would be able to see the subtle differences in these two light shades in that photo, so I got a photo, shown at left, in the rain today. I applied both shades to my arm with a little paddle and did not blend them at all. I reversed the order. Beige 10 is shown at the top, with Beige 20 below. Fair-skinned gals with yellow undertones may prefer Beige 10, while those with pink undertones will probably prefer Beige 20.
I find myself thinking wonderful things about Perfection Lumière, but I won't be purchasing it. Don't let my peculiarities stop you, though. If you prefer a medium-coverage foundation and don't have very dry skin, you should give it serious consideration the next time you're looking for a new foundation. Chanel's Web site and all Chanel counters have Perfection Lumière. If you take the time to find a shade that's perfect for your skin (indoors and out), I think you'll love the finish it adds to your face. It's remarkable.
Photo at top courtesy of Chanel; other photos by Best Things in Beauty