When it comes to splurging in the beauty world I am far more likely to do so on a flashy facial cleanser or serum than a make-up product. However a few weeks ago, (after months of 'umming' and 'ahhing') I invested in my first ever liquid foundation. I am NOT a foundation person. Up until 9 months ago I had never worn foundation once in my life and when I finally did purchase one (Bare Minerals Original SPF 15 Foundation), it was a loose mineral powder foundation aimed specifically at those with oily/blemish prone skin. I found this a great product and would heartily recommend it to anyone with mildly problematic skin. I am a big believer in sorting out and clearing up your skin rather than covering it up (hence why I have never worn foundation before). If you are suffering from bad breakouts or acne, you will have a better and faster chance of clearing it up if you steer clear of makeup and invest your time and money in a good skincare routine. I spent my teenage years surrounded by girls who caked layers of cheap and nasty foundation onto their faces, clogging their pores and looking like oompa-loompas (another reason I avoided foundation). However my skin has changed a lot within the past year, it has really cleared up and has become more dry/normal than oily/combination. Breakouts are now few and far between (thanks to La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo and a number of Lush products), and I only really have a few scars and red patches leftover from my teenage years to cover. I knew I wanted to avoid drugstore products and invest in a high quality foundation that would suit my skin type and not look too OTT.
My first thought was of course Chanel, I love the brand for its incredibly high quality products and the fact that if a Chanel product promises to do something, it WILL do it. However, I did my research and spent many hours reading and watching reviews online, seriously considered the Nars Sheer Glow, wished that BM did a liquid foundation, and eventually decided to stick with my gut instinct and opt for Chanel. I knew that 'Vitalumiere Aqua' was a lightweight foundation and had SPF (an added bonus in my opinion) so had a feeling it would be the best for my skin type. The lady at the Chanel counter was very helpful and matched me to a number of foundations and shades, 'Vitalumiere Aqua' was an undoubted winner. It's SO light that it almost feels like you're not putting anything on, and you certainly can't feel it on your face post application. Despite this the coverage is excellent, my redness, freckles, and under eye darkness disappeared in one coat. It really is like a second skin, (minus the redness and acne scars) and I was lucky in that the shade '10 Beige' was an exact match to my skin tone.
Although I've only been using this for a couple of weeks, I am already hooked. The product is quite strongly scented (in a lovely floral Chanel way) but has not reacted at all with my sensitive skin, I've had no breakouts, it is easy to apply, and a little goes a long way! Chanel recommend finger application which has worked perfectly for me, but I have also used my Beauty Blender and Real Techniques buffing brush, and they have worked fantastically as well. The product is so light that there is no chance of streakiness (unless you opt for a shade significantly darker than your skin tone), and enables me to apply it only to the areas that need it without there being a noticeable difference. My only niggle with this foundation is that it does require thorough cleansing to remove. This is not the kind of product that will disappear with the swipe of a cotton pad. I recommend a double cleanse, first with warm water and a good gel cleanser, and then with a more gentle cleansing milk or lotion. Obviously at £31 this foundation isn't cheap, but is well worth saving up for if you're looking for a light, 'second skin' foundation that still provides good coverage, and actually delivers it's promises.