A Sexy 3Sum With Guerlain.

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After my great experience with the Guerlain Meteorites compact, I decided that maybe I needed to explore the brand a bit. I actually had one thing tucked away in the back of my “Never Gonna Use But What The Hell Do I Do With It” drawer, we all have one, don’t front. This is something that my mum had given me a while back, I want to say a year ago, but it may have been longer, the plastic on the box hadn’t even been removed. To tell the truth I have no idea where she got it, she and my sister disappeared for like a week to Miami I think and she came back with this knowing my finishing powder obsession, but like I said at the time I’d thought of Guerlain as a very dated brand, and getting it from my mum did nothing to diminish that perception.

In any case, she’d bought me the Les Voilettes Loose powder in the shade Ambre, I think the third darkest of all the shades. Now, as far as I can tell there are only three shades of this powder in it’s new iteration. But there used to be four, Clair, Medium, Ambre and Dore.

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The packaging is very pretty…and overwrought, it’s just so damn angsty and love me…ugh, it’s incredibly hard to store outside of the box so that’s where I keep it. Since this is the older packaging, it comes with two covers. An opaque plastic one that you use to stop the powder from spilling everywhere when you aren’t using it. And a weird free sifter that you place over the powder, the theory being that it will help control how much powder you use. In reality, the poor sifter falls right into the powder, and is then a bitch to get out when you’re done, so I’ve given up using it and just proceed very carefully with my brush. The new packaging comes with a sifter that’s attached to the container, a fact I’m sure a lot of people are happy about. I’m almost tempted to get the new one, but they only have three colours, Fair, Medium and Intense, and I don’t know what the heck to do with that.

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I think my mum picked Ambre based on her own summer skin tone which is my winter skin, silly woman. Luckily it was a great match. It’s a translucent tinted powder, so it doesn’t impart a whole lot of colour anyway, so I’d possibly be able to swing it even if it were a shade or so off. But can we just talk about the scent tho? As someone that hates the fragrance being on anything near her face, I was taken aback by how instantly I fell in love the scent of violets that permeates this powder. I think that I like it as much as I do because it smells like a naturally occurring fragrance, and not some very chemically approximation.

The powder when used imparts a very subtle, healthy glow to the skin. It helps to absorb oil and keeps my face looking very fresh. I would use it a lot more than I do, if not for the sifter. But I like it so much that I’m thinking of depotting into something with a better sifter. I’m not at all married to the container. Heavy swatches below.

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So far, I’d had two very good experiences with Guerlain that left me feeling like a damn fool, what had I been missing all this time? On the one hand I felt silly that I’d allowed perceptions to prevent me from exploring this great brand, but on the other I was all, Guerlain is expensive as hell, so…There was one other thing from Guerlain that I hear everyone talking about, and that’s the Lingerie de Peau foundation. By all accounts this foundation is the second coming so since I’m a foundation hoarder and all I figured, eh, why not?

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There are twelve shades in this foundation line, and it’s divided into colour families of Beige, Rose, Ambre and Dore. Each family is then subdivided into shade gradations. I find that the shade range used to be pretty equitable, however they’ve done away with most of the shades in the Ambre range, expanded the Beige category and eliminated one of the Dore shades. The Dore family (golden) is the category that I fall into. There were three shades like I said, Dore Naturel, the lightest. Dore Moyen (medium) and Dore Fonce (dark). They’ve eliminated Fonce, but luckily Moyen was the right shade. It comes in a clear glass bottle with a pump that dispenses just the right amount to work in sections, which is good because it does dry somewhat quickly, and in that way it’s easy to build coverage.

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One of the reasons that I’d never tried this foundation before is because based on all the reviews I’m read, it seems to be exactly the same as my Armani Maestro, and I’m happy with the love of my life. After trying it, the comparisons aren’t wrong. The Shade is exactly the same, the Armani is a bit more golden and so melds better with my skin, this one leans a bit more yellow. But it dries to the same semi matte, velvet almost powdery finish.

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Now, while I like the finish on this and the lasting power (about eight hours) and it is almost identical to the Maestro, there is one very important distinction that prevents me from wearing this. The ingredients. Every time that I wear this, without fail by the end of the day I’ve broken out, so I decided to check the ingredients on both. What I found is that the Armani is a much cleaner formulated foundation by far. This has 40 ingredients, 7 of which are cones, and they’re the very first ingredients (larger quantities are always listed first in formulations) along with Pentylene Glycol which like Propylene Glycol a known irritant, but is supposed to be less irritating. I don’t have issues with cones unless they’re in large quantities like I dunno, 7 in one thing?! But I’m highly, highly allergic to Propylene Glycol, I break out in hives, rashes and it’s just generally unpretty. In contrast the Armani has 36 ingredients with 4 cones, 3 of them are at the bottom of the list, and no Propylene or Pentylene Glycol. A $63 error on my part, but if you have none of the issues with the ingredients like I do, then have at it. If like me you’re allergic to large quantities of cones and/or Glycol derivatives, the Maestro is a better bet unless you’re very cool toned since Armani foundation tend to run warm.

The coverage is light to medium, and can be made into full with the right finishing powder, but trying to build it to full on it’s own is going to land you in cake face territory because of the almost powder finish.

Since I was there and I’ve developed an obsession with click pen concealers, I decided to go ahead and get the Precious Light Illuminating Concealer for under eyes. It comes in three shades, 00, 01 and 02 being the darkest, that I picked up.

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The pen is gold and comes in pretty velvet pouch I guess to avoid scratches when travelling. This was probably the first click pen that I’ve used that didn’t take a hundred clicks to get product out so in that sense it was great.

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The colour is a light peach shade, but I found the formula to be really thin, like the Touche Éclat I found myself using too much for coverage which is why I was never a fan of Touche Éclat. Although 02 is the darkest colour, it’s not that dark really. It’s not glaringly too light, because of the thin formulation it’s easy to blend it in, but on it’s own it’s not all that special.

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Where it shines though is after colour correcting my under eyes. I think this would be great if unlike me you don’t have very dark under eye circles. Unfortunately my sister and I have been afflicted with the dreaded South Asian extremely dark under eye circles, my mum doesn’t have them which I find incredibly ironic considering the South Asian genes come from her. Sissy and I need industrial strength coverage, her even more than I because she’s so very fair and literally looks as if she’s sporting two black eyes.

 

Final Thoughts.

I wasn’t very disappointed with anything that I got from Guerlain, the foundation is stellar I just can’t use it and that doesn’t matter because I was already in love with my Maestro. The click pen works wonderfully with colour correction, but they could probably stand to add a few darker shades to the range. I absolutely love love love the powder, the finish and the scent are beautiful and it’s incredibly long lasting. I regret nothing.

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