Friday, May 14, 2010

Coastal Scents HD foundation review

I've been trying out the Coastal Scents Undercover HD Foundation ($16.95) for awhile now and thought I'd share my thoughts.
image from here

Paraphrased from the Coastal Scents website, this foundation is perfect for creating a soft focus, and a flawless natural finish. UnderCover HD is not oil or water based and it is non comedogenic. HD foundations use silicones, which creates a protective shield on the skin, allowing it to breathe and retain it's natural moisture.

I picked 4 samples so I could get an exact shade match. I am NC42-NC45 in MAC, so I selected shades 6, 7, 8 and 9. Since each 3 gram sample is only $.49 each, its well worth it to pick up several shades.

As soon as I placed the foundation on my hand, I noticed that the consistency of the foundation was thin. It's thinner than my Shu Uemura Face Architect, and much thinner than Revlon Colorstay.

I thought there would be no coverage given the thin texture, but here, you can see that my hand has that "soft focus and flawless finish" when blended out with my fingers.

 Let's cut to the chase...
After a bit of trial and error with getting the right application technique, I have concluded that this is an awesome foundation. At $16.95, it is a total bargain HD foundation, compared to MUFE HD Foundation, which is $40. Also, it hasn't broken me out, and I love how the thin consistency makes me forget that I'm wearing anything on my face. The finish is a sheen (neither matte nor dewy), which makes my skin look flat out gorgeous. I set the foundation with a light swipe of Studio Fix Powder.

Technique is everything with this foundation. Brushes made this foundation look cakey, and fingers made it look like a tinted moisturizer. Believe me, a week ago, this puppy was gonna get a terrible review! But that was, until I tried applying this with a damp sponge. I've been using a damp non-latex sponge (like $1.99 from Target for a whole bunch), and it gives the most breath-taking finish.

The dreaded Buts:
1. This foundation is not full coverage. If you have any imperfections to cover up, you'll need a concealer. I mean, that's fair enough. After all, this is a foundation, not a concealer.

2. I would not use this on days when my skin was miserably flaky and dry. Because this foundation is so light weight, it actually accentuates flaky dry skin. So if you're going through a huge acne treatment and its Flake City (haha lovely mental image), then stay away. But a few minor dry patches should be no big deal. In fact, applying the foundation with a damp sponge will moisturize away minor patchiness.

Final Thoughts: Pros are shade selection, price, staying power, finish, and non-comedogenic. Cons are: not full coverage, tricky application technique, and does not work on dry skin.

PS. I am currently a mix of shades ST 07 and ST 09.

PPS. Foundation samples were provided courtesy of a voucher from Coastal Scents. I was not even asked to review these products. This is my honest opinion, and I am unaffiliated with Coastal Scents. 

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