You may have noticed this product popping up in several of my Face of the Day posts; I've been using it both as a setting powder, and as a powder foundation on days that I want light and easy makeup. I bought it after reading all of the rave reviews for it on The Body Shop's website, and I was able to pick it up during one of their 3/$30 sales. While the retail price is $22, it's possible to get it for $10 or $11 if you wait for one of their BOGO or great 3/$30 sales. That being said, I think it is worth full price; it performs much better than any other powder foundation I've tried, and is less than you'd find a comparable product selling for at your local MAC counter or Sephora.
So, what does this little compact do? What doesn't it do! I bought it hoping it would work for touch-ups throughout the day, providing a bit more coverage than a pressed powder. However, I've had problems with powder foundations in the past because of my very dry skin. Sometimes they end up just looking powdery and unnatural on me; sometimes they end up creating dry patches. And I've never found one that offered more than the most minimal coverage. This is the first powder foundation that I've tried that actually works on me as a foundation. With moisturizer underneath, it doesn't dry out my skin at all, it looks fairly natural, and it provides enough light-medium coverage to help even out my skin tone. It's not moisturizing on its own, and it does absorb any excess oils on my face, but it does not suck the moisture out of my face; I think this would work fine for those with oilier skin than I have, since it doesn't add any moisture in and of itself, however I can't speak to its performance on different skin types. When I use it with the accompanying sponge, it works great as a foundation; with a fluffy powder brush, I can use it as a setting powder over my usual liquid foundation formulas, and it does a great job at that too.
It's worth mentioning that I can use the same color for foundation and a setting powder; sometimes, what I can use as a setting powder is too dark when used as a foundation. It's also very gentle on my sensitive skin. One issue that I can foresee others having is that these shades run incredibly light, and they do not offer enough shades to cover darker skin tones. If you are so pale that you often have trouble finding foundations that match your skin tone, this might be a good range to look into, but if you have darker than medium skin, you'll probably find yourself out of luck with this range. For reference, I am wearing shade 3 (and could probably stand to move into 4 during the summer months when I get a little bit of sun) in this collection, and they only offer 6 shades. In Revlon's Color Stay formula, I am Buff, the second to lightest shade; in most collections, I am the lightest or second to lightest shade offered. Clinique does not offer a shade light enough and neutral-warm enough for my skin tone.
Here it is swatched on my skin; you can get a feel for the finish here. It's definitely matte, but not chalky.
|I'm so sorry, Blogger uploaded this sideways and I can't figure out how to change the orientation... Anybody know how to do this on Blogger?|
In the following picture, I am wearing it as a foundation, applied with the accompanying sponge. I am wearing it over moisturizer and a primer. I wore it like this the entire time I was at Disneyland, and it was great for the hot days; it didn't last all day, even with a primer, but I didn't expect it to in those extreme conditions. The great thing was that I could carry the compact with me and touch up without having to be careful to blend it out, or worrying about the texture not matching my earlier foundation. While it didn't hold up to running around and sweating in the heat, it wore off in a very natural looking way and did not look patchy.
In normal situations, this works just well over a primer all day long. While I carry the compact with me in my purse to touch up where my glasses mess up my makeup on my nose, I usually don't have to touch up other than that; maybe a little around the nose and chin on days that my skin isn't as dry.
|Worn as foundation|
In the next picture, I am wearing the All In One Face Base as a setting powder (applied with a fluffy powder brush) on top of Revlon's Color Stay liquid foundation. You can see that the finish is matte without looking as chalky or unnatural as some truly matte powders can. I would *almost* call this a satin finish, although I think it does land on the matte side of that classification.
|Used as a finishing powder|
Summary: I've been using this for a few months now as both a foundation and a finishing powder, and it works great in both respects. It's compatible with my dry, sensitive skin, and the shade range is great for very pale skin tones that aren't often catered to in foundation shades. The price is great, too; it's often on sale for $10-$11, and even at its regular $22 price point, it is still less than many higher end powder foundations while still performing like one. However, anyone with darker than medium skin probably will not be able to find a match in this range; it seems very limited to very-pale to pale-medium complexions. Very strange! However, if you can find this in your shade and you want a versatile compact you can use as a setting powder or powder foundation, this just might do the trick!