[REVIEW] Lancôme Blanc Expert Liquid Foundation

I bought this last year at a huge discount and was really excited to try this out because I had heard really good reviews of Lancôme’s base products.


Product Description

A lightweight, brightening fluid foundation that provides anti-dullness and multi-ptotection for a beautiful rosy glow.

Combining both makeup and skincare in its formulation, it brightens and protects:

•  Contains a high concentration of illuminating pigments for an instant bright complexion

•  Enriched with anti-oxidant skincare ingredients and rose extract, that offers instant protection from daily aggressions and UV rays.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 72

 

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Ingredient List

I wasn’t able to find the list online (surprisingly) and had already thrown away the box by the time I started writing this, so I won’t be able to talk about this in detail 😦


I was recommended shade O-O2 by the beauty advisor, which I think is suited for people with skin that is not too fair, and has warm undertones.

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Packaging: A lot of makeup brands have foundations in similar packaging, but I have to say that this looks absolutely luxurious – perfectly befitting of a luxury brand. It’s actually made of glass, so it feels quite heavy and probably breakable if not handled properly, which is a bit of a problem if you’re planning to bring this on travels. Another point I want to highlight is that it has a pump that is good for controlling the amount of product you need, without making it excessively dirty.

Colour: O-O2 turned out to be a great fit for me – it didn’t come out looking like I slapped paint that was a shade too light or too dark for me. I’m a C21 for Korean brands, so you can use that as a reference. Do take note that this foundation also really helps to brighten up your skin, so you may end up looking a shade lighter than you usually do.

Staying power: This wasn’t promised by the product, and so I didn’t have as much expectations for it to stay on for long hours. Frankly it didn’t either – by the end of a normal work day, most of it would actually have oxidized, and you’ll see that there’s quite a fair bit of oil on your skin left.

Coverage: Another point I didn’t particularly like about this product its lack of coverage, and its ability to emphasize all the tiny bumps and pimples on your skin. It made my skin look even worse, especially when I am suffering from breakouts and clogged pores.


Final Verdict

Technically, this foundation from Lancôme promises to brighten dull skin, and it definitely does its job by making your skin look really bright and shiny. However, as I have come to realize, this exactly isn’t for everyone – or at least, not for me. If you are looking for a foundation that provides maximum coverage, sebum control, and can last you from dawn to dusk, I’m sad to say that this foundation might not fit the bill.

Nonetheless, if you have relatively good skin that needs minimum coverage and a good dose of brightening, this foundation will be better suited to you.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮

mustbuy

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[REVIEW] Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup SPF 10

I wanted to get this foundation for the longest time ever because of all these great reviews I had read online, and I finally got around to buying it (in JB). I know some people have spent much more money on UD Naked palettes and SKII, but this has been my most expensive purchase thus far, so you can imagine all my expectations, hopes & dreams for this product (jk).


Product Description

24-hour staying power. Flawless all day. This worry-free, long-wearing makeup stays fresh and looks natural through heat, humidity, nonstop activity. Won’t change color, smudge or come off on clothes. Feels lightweight and comfortable. Now the flawless look you see in the morning is the look you keep all day. Oil-free. Fragrance-free.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 70

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Ingredient List

Water\Aqua\Eau; Cyclopentasiloxane; Trimethylsiloxysilicate; Peg/Ppg-18/18 Dimethicone; Butylene Glycol; Tribehenin; Polyglyceryl-3 Diisostearate; Magnesium Sulfate; Tocopheryl Acetate; Polymethylsilsesquioxane; Methicone; Laureth-7; Xanthan Gum; Alumina; Sodium Dehydroacetate; Disteardimonium Hectorite; Cellulose Gum; Propylene Carbonate; Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate; Phenoxyethanol; [+/- Iron Oxides (Ci 77491, Ci 77492, Ci 77499); Mica; Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891)] <ILN39010>

Main ingredient is water, and no trace of oil, as promised! This is good news for people who have oily skin and pores prone to clogging (aka me).


This foundation has the lowest SPF I have seen in any of my base products – I thought SPF 15 in my Innisfree foundation was the lowest you can go, but clearly I thought wrong.

A quick guide to SPF: If your skin would normally burn after 10 minutes in the sun, applying an SPF 10 sunscreen would allow you to stay in the sun without burning for approximately 100 minutes (a factor of 10 times longer).

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Packaging: So. Classy.

Okay but classy feels aside, I feel that this packaging definitely has its cons. It’s a little heavy due to the glass packaging, but what really irks me is that THERE IS NO PUMP! I read online that apparently you have to buy a separate pump for this, but why!! All the foundations I’ve used so far come with a pump, and even BB creams have tube packaging to make it easier for users to squeeze an appropriate amount. How could this not have a pump??? My heart bleeds every time I pour a little too much than needed on to my brush 😦 It can also get a little messy, so I often get slight dabs of foundation on the cap and other parts of the bottle – so wasted!

Colour: I was initially very overwhelmed by the number of shades available. You must understand that as a consumer who’s been mostly using K-beauty products, I am used to going either one shade lighter or one shade darker than I would like – there is hardly any in between. I took some time to swatch and went with 1W2 because of my warm undertones. Even though it is a very good match, I feel that maybe I would try 1N2 next time instead, because I didn’t really like how much my warm undertones were showing through.

The colour applies evenly, in fact it gives the most even application that I’ve ever gotten from any base product. I really like how my skin immediately looks smoother, brighter, and the colour is more even.

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This is without filter – can you believe it!!

Staying power: These were the promises made by the brand on its website:

  • OIL-FREE
  • TRANSFER-RESISTANT
  • DERMATOLOGIST-TESTED
  • NON-ACNEGENIC; WON’T CLOG PORES
  • FRAGRANCE-FREE
  • WON’T LOOK GREY ON DEEPER SKINTONES

I definitely agree about the lack of oil. When I use other types of products, I tend to get this oily sheen on my face after a few hours. However, my face has never produced a lot of oil even after more than 6 hours with this Estee Lauder foundation! In fact, my makeup stays on so well that it can survive more than 12 hours in any kind of weather you can think of – hot, rainy, humid, anything! I never found the need to touch up again when I apply this foundation, and always have my base makeup nearly fully intact at the end of the day.


Final Verdict

This is DEFINITELY holy grail material. I dislike having to call any product ‘holy grail’ so I avoid it as much as I can, but this is honestly the stuff that dreams are made of.

The one problem with this (besides the lack of a pump) is the price point. I know many of us struggle with daily expenditures and it doesn’t help that makeup is such an integral part of our lives (at least for me, it definitely is). I think that if you have the money and are willing to invest in a great foundation, this is the product you should get. A good foundation will really go a long, long way, especially if you struggle with skin issues (discolouration, acne, etc.).


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮✮✮

mustbuy

[TIPS] K-beauty products for makeup beginners

When I first started using makeup (which was actually in December 2016), I was absolutely confused. I bought my first makeup products in Korea, and I completely had no idea what I was looking for. BB cream? Eyeliner? Eyebrow pencil? Lipstick? Those were probably the only 4 I knew, and even so I didn’t know which brands and which products were good. I struggled through my first few products because the application wasn’t always great, and some products just didn’t do well on my skin.

In this post, I’ve recommended products which I personally feel are a) worth every cent, b) easy for beginners to use, and c) basic products that most people would use, so I’ve excluded stuff like highlighter, contour etc. Do read on! 🙂


Primer: banila co. Prime Primer Hydrating (SGD 25)

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I didn’t use primer early in my makeup journey, and if you’re on a really tight budget, I honestly think you can skip this step. While the brand is not available in Singapore (officially), you can either get it on Althea, other E-commerce platforms like Shopee, or even in Malaysia. This primer is really good for ensuring your skin stays moisturized and that your makeup stays in place – great for most skin types.


Foundation: Innisfree Skinny Fit Foundation (SGD 29)

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They weren’t joking about the skinny cover fit in this product, which is why I love using this. I think this foundation has really good coverage, stays on for long without much oxidizing, and feels very light on the skin. There are a few downsides of course, such as lack of shades available and low SPF, but generally still good for its price.


Setting powder: Innisfree No-Sebum Mineral Powder (SGD 10)

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Never thought before that you need setting powder to lock in your makeup and keep oil under control? You’ll know what you’re missing out on once you get around to trying this. This is a holy grail product of most K-beauty bloggers. Perfect dupe for more expensive setting powders in Sephora, smells great, and is cheap!! One small tub can last you for months on end, so imagine how much value you’re getting out of your $$$$. This is actually much cheaper on sites like Althea, and of course in Korea (bought 3 for around SGD 10, just imagine). This powder sets your makeup for you to go from dawn to dusk, and prevents your skin from becoming an oil well.


Eyebrow pencil: Etude House Drawing Eye Brow (SGD 5.90)

No product photo as of yet, sorry!!

This eyebrow pencil from Etude House is another product frequently touted for its great quality and low price. This was the first eyebrow pencil I used, and I stuck to this for more than one year before I tried the Shu Uemura Hard Formula. I love it because it is seriously very cheap, can last for very long, and is super easy to use. If you thought drawing eyebrows is going to take you at least 30 minutes, this product will certainly change your mind.


Eyeshadow + Blush: Innisfree My Palette (SGD 8/colour)

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My colours look like I’m confused (I was, kinda – when I bought this, I was sneezing my head off at the store like no one’s business) but actually I found this very useful for doing a whole face of makeup haha. The browns, in particular, are very useful for doing both eyeshadow and contour. I like the pigmentation and how easy it is to blend, which is especially useful for beginners who can’t deal with chalky, tough eyeshadow (actually no one can).

This is slightly pricier at $8 per cube/colour, but I think that a nice brown is a good investment because it works as both eyeshadow and contour.


Eyeliner: TFS Inkgel Pencil Eyeliner (SGD 15.90)

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Some people don’t do eyeliner, but some people live by it. If you’re a beginner, please don’t jump straight into liquid/gel liners. Even I still struggle with them and stick to pencils 90% of the time 😦 This one from TFS is one of my favourites because it really glides on your eyelids easily, and is smudge-proof & waterproof. No one will be able to tell that you’re just starting out in makeup if you get your eyeliner on point, and this product definitely can do that for you.


Lipstick: Peripera Ink the Airy Velvet (SGD 6.90)

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The truth is that there are many great lip products out there, but one that is particularly noteworthy is this product from Peripera, famed for its lip tints. Gradient lip? Full lip look? Last you from one meal to the next? This one’s got you covered for just SGD 6.90.


Total spending: SGD 100.70

This amount looks terrifying (yes, makeup is unfortunately really expensive), but I’ll further streamline this for you by cutting out the eyeshadow+ blush, and primer:

Total spending: SGD 67.70

It’s definitely still a big sum, but this is money that you can consider a good investment because you will use it well – trust me, these products won’t be left untouched on the shelf just after one use,  unless you bought a shade you don’t like.

Are there any products here that you also used when you first started doing makeup, or that you agree are great for beginners? Let me know in the comments!

[REVIEW] Innisfree Skinny Cover Fit Foundation

This is the first foundation that I’ve ever reviewed, and for good reason. I’ve been using BB creams since a few years ago, and never got around to using foundation because I really needed the full coverage and SPF that BB creams provide. It was only after I went for a facial this year and was told that I should lay off BB creams (which had a tendency to clog my pores), I had no choice but to look for alternatives.

I wanted to try a foundation from a K-beauty brand that wasn’t way out of my budget, and I happened to swatch this when I was casually window-shopping in Innisfree. I loved how the foundation felt on my skin throughout the day, so I made a mental note to go back and buy it, and now it is part of my makeup routine.


Product Description

– Skinny cover for flawless yet natural-looking skin look
The skinny cover fitting formula thinly yet densely fits on the skin for a natural-looking, flawless look

– Powerful fixing effect for easy makeup
The sebum control powder and setting powder forms a powerful fixing film on the skin to prevent makeup from cracking due to sweat and sebum.

– Skin look fresh and light all day long
The smart formula maintains a refreshing makeup look without clumping or smearing due to excess oil and moisture.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 29

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Ingredient List

I wasn’t able to find the list online and had already thrown away the box by the time I started writing this, so I won’t be able to talk about this in detail 😦


Frankly, I was quite disappointed when I saw that a) there were so few shades available and b) such a low SPF. Most BB creams (and even my Lancôme foundation) offer SPF50, and SPF15 is the lowest I’ve ever seen. Also, the 4 shades available are seriously VERY limited. I’m lucky that 21 is a match for me, but 13 as your next lightest shade? And 23 as your darkest? Really now Innisfree? K-beauty brands definitely still have a long way to go in terms of diversity.

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Packaging: The first time I saw it, I was immediately reminded of shu uemura’s petal foundation.

Image result for shu uemura petal foundation

Nonetheless, I am a huge fan of the packaging. It looks very classy and modern, and is surprisingly convenient to carry around when you’re travelling. The pump works great as well, dispensing just the right amount every time you squeeze it.

Colour: I bought N21, because my sensitive, acne-prone skin is actually quite red most of the time, so I didn’t really want to use C21 and make my skin look even redder. Like I mentioned earlier, I’m lucky that N21 is a really good match for me so I don’t have to mix with another foundation to get the correct colour. It looks very natural, almost like it’s my own skin, which I guess is why the foundation is called ‘Skinny Cover Fit’. It’s a very even colour as well, very consistent throughout, so I’m happy with that.

Staying power: I honestly did not have super high hopes for the staying power, because I was under the impression that foundations would oxidize a lot faster than BB creams. I’m happy to admit that I’m wrong. This foundation, best applied with a sponge, can actually help your skin look and stay fresh throughout the day. Its coverage is really good for a foundation, so I usually just apply one to two layers, spritz some setting spray, and I’ll let nature run its course for the next 12+ hours. I find myself not needing to touch-up my makeup as often as I used to, which is fantastic!

However, I don’t really share the same sentiments about its oil/sebum control. My T-zone still turns into an oil well after a few hours, but I do see a difference in that my makeup doesn’t look like it’s caking or smudging because of the oil.


Final Verdict

If you are new to foundations in the K-beauty world, I’d definitely recommend this. It really does feel like a second layer of skin – thin, breathable, and comfortable. I like how easy application is, be it with a sponge or a brush, so you don’t have to struggle every morning trying to even out the foundation on your face.

I’m not convinced by the oil/sebum-controlling properties it claims to have, but I am a fan of its long-lasting, natural coverage. If you are looking for an alternative to BB creams but still need the high coverage, this is the foundation you need.

$29 is a good investment to make for a good base makeup, but do again take note that it may not carry a desired shade, and will not help with oil and sebum control. The low SPF also means that you should probably pile up on the sunscreen as well – no excuse not to!


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮✮

mustbuy

[REVIEW] IOPE Air Cushion

I had heard multiple wonderful reviews of IOPE’s Air Cushion, therefore I finally decided to buy one even though I’m not a heavy user of cushion compacts.


Product description

Cushion foundation that provides powerful protection against UV rays and delivers complete coverage for natural, luminous complexion.

Official Retail Price in Singapore: SGD 37.34 (Lazada)

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 After my bad experience trying to match my shade for the Etude House Any Cushion All Day Perfect, I gave up and asked the salesgirl to help recommend a suitable cushion for me. She explained that there were 3 types (Natural, Shimmer, Cover) as you can see in the product description above. Natural gives you the dewy, moisturized skin that Koreans love, Shimmer a brighter skin that glows (much like the banila co. It Radiant Glow BB Cream) and Cover promises a higher coverage for skin as terrible as mine. I was recommended 21C (or C21) for a shade that was slightly lighter than my original colour, so I trusted the salesgirl and hoped that she was right.

Thankfully, she was.

21 is a nice colour, but the coverage provided is not as good as I expected. It’s probably because my skin is really bad and I have no hopes of covering 3D acne with just foundation. It takes me at least 2 layers on a particular spot in order to get a decent coverage – I shudder to think what would have happened if I underestimated my skin condition and bought, say, Natural. It feels quite hydrating, and not a single bit oily – good for my dry & oily skin! It feels lightweight and comfortable on the skin, which is why I guess it’s called Air Cushion.

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I try not to be a sucker for packaging because it doesn’t say much about product quality, but I’m honestly in love with the IOPE cushion’s. It’s of a much better finishing than the Etude House cushion, and vaguely resembles a pearl with its holographic cover. It feels really luxurious, and it’s little wonder that you see a lot of Korean girls whipping this out in public because it’s so pretty.

I’ve used this quite a few times before I wrote this, and every time I’m still very amazed by its long wear time. I tested this again just last week, putting my banila co. primer first and then finishing off with the Innisfree No-Sebum powder. I had it on for about 6 hours, walking around in hot weather and then staying in an air-conditioned room for 3 hours. At the end of the day, it still looked as fresh as when I first applied it, which was amazing! I also could not see much signs of oxidation. My skin was neither too dry nor too oily, and I figured the foundation could probably even last me for 5 more hours if I didn’t take it off.


Final Verdict

This product has been highly raved about so often and by so many people that it made me really cynical at the beginning, but trying it for myself got me completely sold.

Initially, you might think that this is rather expensive (I bought it for more than 40 000 won in Seoul), but you’ll realize that it comes with a refill, meaning that this product can probably last you for 6 months to 1 year, depending on how often you use it. I think the price is absolutely worth it.

I was originally not a fan of cushion compacts because I associated it with poor coverage, high oxidation and short wear time. However, IOPE’s Air Cushion has totally changed my perspective on cushions. The rave reviews are absolutely valid and substantiated, and I now finally understand why every single girl in Korea seems to be using this to touch up their makeup in public. This product truly deserves all the hype and awards it receives, and I will definitely repurchase this.

I’m just hoping my skin clears up soon so that I can try the Natural and Shimmer ranges, which might offer even more fantastic results than the Coverage one.


Rating

Colour payoff: ✮✮✮✮
Ease of use: ✮✮✮✮✮
Staying power: ✮✮✮✮✮
Value for money: ✮✮✮✮✮

mustbuy