Let me tell you who designed the Macbook Pro Retina: a man. A man who’d never had the pleasure of documenting a foundation review. Y’see, pair a high def camera with a retina screen and we have a disturbingly microscopic view of my peach fuzz. For those of you who own this son ova dsjkfbhj, we’re about to embark on a journey… into the depths of my pores. An intimate journey. Hold my hand.
I rarely do this but let’s see what Chanel has to say about Vitalumiere Aqua (for the lolz): An unprecedented sensory experience…blah blah, Rapid and easy application. Although it is exceptionally delicate and light, an incomparable “second-skin” perfecting result is achieved. Its formula, endowed with a UVB sun filter and mineral sunscreen, protects the skin from damaging sun rays. Yadda yadda.
Let’s get down to the nitty gritty.
The practical woman in me loves the packaging! The spout allows you to dispense the exact amount of product required. The bottle is plastic (and lacks that luxury, weighty quality) but functional, great for travelling.
Good and bad news, shade-range-wise. Chanel VA accommodates for both cool and warm skintones: B10-B50 run quite yellow while BR10-BR50 have pinkened undertones (click here for some great Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua Swatches).
As with most mass produced foundations, VA doesn’t cater to either pale or deep extremes- the palest colour match (B10) is best suited to an NC15. I’m currently using shade B20, a very good match for my NC25 skin with yellow (but not golden) undertones.
For shade reference, here is how it compares to some of my other favourite bases.
Vitalumiere Aqua is best applied with fingers as it has a very fluid consistency (shake it like a Polaroid picture) and brushes tend to eat all the product. The BeautyBlender is rendered useless here, it sheers the coverage out to next-to-nothing. Applied with fingers, I would pin VA at light to medium coverage– buildable but not beyond medium. Two light layers and the rosiness around my nose and cheeks peeks through, I think most people will crave a concealer here n there.
You can see from our after shot that Chanel VA looks very, very natural. I account this to the relatively sheer coverage and the velvety, skin-like finish (which is neither matte nor dewy, I seem to collect ALL TEH satin foundations). The effect is so DARN natural that I imagine most people wouldn’t guess I was wearing foundation at all.
Buttttt, it does have the tendency to settle around nose lines. This can be remedied by using primer and powder (I used neither, for the purpose of this review).
You may also perceive some texture and pores around the center of my face- I KNOW I KNOW, it’s nothing to lose sleep over but I’m being critical (for you guise). Chanel VA is high in alcohol (and fragrance, FYI) and as it sets, it draws attention to any flakiness or textural issues.
I first purchased this foundation last summer and really enjoyed it, it had great longevity on my normal skin and I felt no need to set it with powder. The SPF15 is also a nice token but nothing to rely upon. Now that winter has arrived in Sydney, it’s become clear to me that this ought to be a warm weather foundation for me. Simply put, VA does no favours for winter-worn, dehydrated skin.
Confused? I’ll clarify.
– Normal to oily skins with minimal textural issues and no discernible flaky patches.
– Those of you who prefer a lighter coverage with a velvet finish
– Lucky ladies and gents who don’t suffer from dehydrated skin
Skip it if:
– You have textured skin, significantly dehydrated skin, dry flakes or considerable sensitivities to alcohol and fragrance
– You’re on the dryer side of the spectrum
– You prefer a true medium coverage foundation
Public Service Announcement to all those interested in this foundation:
– Moisturise well beforehand, it makes worlds of a difference. You’re welcome.
Overall, I think Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua fills a void in the foundation market: a relatively sheer formulation that doesn’t slide off combo to oily skintypes (along the same lines of Hourglass Immaculate). I do love this foundation in summer but I’ll have to reserve it until the warmer weather. I’m feeling parched. And cold. Waaahh 🙁
Ps: Refer to picture of foundations above, any review suggestions? I’m all ears.