Illamasqua Skin Base

I am ready to review.

So here it is along with some scary face close-ups where I am wearing the foundation in question...



I got this foundation recently and honestly, had medium-low expectations. I was curious about it but didn't expect to really appreciate or shout loudly about it's virtues. It was the stop-gap.

My beloved/ridiculously overpriced Chantecaille Just Skin had run out and with no stockists in Dubai, I was 1-2 weeks away from a UK order reaching me. I needed a decent performing foundation to tide me over. Quite why I needed to give you this background information, I do not know, but that's the justification. Well that, and the fact that the sales assistant in Harvey Nichols looked happy.

I got it in the shade 10 and as soon as I applied it (with the help of MAC's 181 kabuki) I liked it. It covered, it matched my skintone and it left a soft, satin finish. Then, at the end of the work day, I noticed that my blusher/bronzer, along with my foundation, looked perfect. At that point I loved it.

It lasts well during the day (with just a minimal amount of fading along my T-zone), seems to help products adhere well to your skin, all whilst looking relatively natural.

The most helpful way to describe this foundation would be to comparatively assess it:

* It has more of a gel-like consistency when compared with NARS Sheer Glow - and seems to last a little longer.
* It settles into the skin better than Chanel Mat Lumiere or YSL Teint Radiance.
* It's not as hard work as MAC's Face and Body - and packs a lot more punch coverage wise.
* It smells a lot better than MAC Studio Fix Fluid and doesn't look as heavy - apply a bit under the eyes and it's not going to cake on you.
* It doesn't provide the glow of Chantecaille but does last a lot longer.
* It is easier to blend and somehow doesn't make your face look at flat as MUFE HD.

It's good and I would recommend it. The only bitchy asides would be that:

* The promotional copy describes it as being "inspired" by the BB cream genre and if by inspired they mean nothing like it at all, then yep, it's "inspired".
* I have heard that some people's skin couldn't tolerate it - I got one spot (travesty!) but that didn't have anything to do with this.
* It's meant to be BAD on dry skin.
* The packaging is a bit....meh. I really have to commit to squeeze a drop out and I cannot always measure how much I am going to get. If we get too much well, then it's a heavy makeup day with layers of slap! Wa-hey!


What I would applaud though is the Illamasqua shade chart which references other brands' shades. This is such a useful resource if you are picking out the foundation online. Really good stuff and reflective of an organization that has really tried to understand it's customers.

It costs £25 for 30ml which puts it in the higher end category but still half the price of Chantecaille's Just Skin.

The latter remains my holy grail but Skin Base rates high on my scale - and I am a picky little madam.

I would give it 7 out of 10. It's not perfect (few things are!) - I like a more dewy finish - but it's a good performer. Medium coverage, long-lasting and almost undetectable, particularly on camera.

So tell us, what has your experience been of Skin Base?



For reference: I am normal/combination skin. I normally wear NC35 in MAC, Barcelona/Pubjab in Sheer Glow and Wheat in Chantecaille Just Skin.

58 comments:

  1. My current favourite is chanel vitalumiere aqua but I have been wanting to try skin base for a while now. might invest in the new year because the finish looks gorgeous on your skin!

    Hayley x

    www.onewaytickettogorgeous.blogspot.com

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  2. I think I am more impressed with your hair! It looks amazing!

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  3. Oooh it sounds good! I think it's a bit heavy for me though since I rarely wear foundation and prefer a light/medium coverage.

    Have you used Jemma Kidd's Light as Air foundation? I'd love to know your thoughts on that one!

    Shabna @ scheine

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  4. Sod the foundation... look at your hair!!!! It's gorgeous, it looks amazing :D xx

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  5. @Hayley - that's a good'un. Noce and light!

    @Vickie - haha it was a big hair day!

    @Shabna - no i haven't. i hear really good things though. I agree that this is on the heavier side. I am so used to Just Skin that it was a nice shock :)

    @The Pampered Sparrow - I sniggered when I read that :) As I said above, it was a big hair day :)

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  6. i have just applied skin base, and was actually taking pics to on photo booth to see how it looks :) hahaha! it is bit too 'matt' for my liking but there is nothing fix+ can't solve :) your hair is seriously looking amazing! xxx

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  7. Great post, I've been using Skin Base since it launched and i went threw a phase of not liking it but then once I found an application that helped give my the coverage where I needed it and just a light application for tonal correcting then I loved it all over again. A duel fiber brush is what I use to apply it just for reference. I bought it in July and am nearly 2/3rd's through the bottle now, to give you an indication of how long its lasts. xxx

    MNavyPrincess.blogspot.com

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  8. Dear Laura, I must say this foundation is looking brilliant on you. You are glowing, and this is making you even more prettier.

    I need to request you to please do a few blogs on 'Professional Office Clothing & Attire'. I am so looking forward to that already :)

    Love your choices, whether in clothes, accessories or make up.

    Tara

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  9. @missarch - i know what you mean. That's why its not a 10 out of 10 for me - I like a glow :)

    @MNavyPrincess - ooh fabulous! I haven't tried that kind of brush. I have become weirdly kabuki loyal :)

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  10. @Pirate on duty - i am probably the wrong person to ask for that because i work in such a casual/media-ish environment. If you look at what I wore this weekend - the TRF blazer post - yep, that's pretty much it :) Sometimes I do smarten up though for presentations etc...mmmm maybe I could conjure up a post :)

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  11. i have it and love it, i got it in shade 6 which is a perfect neutral but a tiny bit too light for me but it's ok cos that way i can mix it with other darker foundations i have laying around like my healthy mix in 52. and garnier's BB cream which is a smidge too orange on me too.

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  12. Looking beautiful Laura :) A really beautiful finish to the foundation too!! Flattering foundations that last a long time are such good finds - I will need to give this a whirl sometime soon :) xx

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  13. @Patricia - i love mixing foundations! Would be a nice one to mix with something much lighter in formulation. Good idea!

    @Flutura - it's really natural. It's hard to give a good photo of it because it's truly undetectable on camera. Thumbs up!

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  14. I'm posting my review on this tomorrow. As a true oily-skinner, I have found this surprisingly good. I really struggle with bases and am yet to be properly happy with one but Skin Base has become one of my favourites.

    I can get away without powdering when I wear it which is UNHEARD of for me. I find if I've been wearing it all day and then go straight out after work without reapplying, in photos it looks like it's worn off my cheeks a little but basically it looks good.

    In terms of skin benefits I actually think it's helped; I was suffering with a few breakouts on my jaw line and since using this (everyday for three weeks now), they've cleared up quite significantly. I apply with a Sigma F80.

    That is all. That was quite long. Overall: 8/10.

    Thank you and goodnight.

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  16. I must say, I noticed your skin in the last 3 blog posts and thought to myself "Wow, she looks great and she's obviously using a lighter foundation!" If this is what you've been using lately, stick with it. It's amazing on you!

    Also, welcome to the dark side! (The light-medium coverage side, that is) :-D

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  17. I really love this foundation; it's found its way into my pro kit as well as my makeup bag and from a MUAs point of view, it looks as stunning under studio lights as it does natural light. Win! x

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  18. @Product Pixie - great summary! yes i love the fact that touching up before you go out is rendered completely unnecessary by the formulation. :)

    @Minela - ah for the last month I have used either this or Chantecaille Just Skin - a true light coverage. :) Love it :)

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  19. As you already know, it broke me out, but I loved it for all the reasons you mentioned, and it photographs beautifully!

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  20. I havent tried this- but I did pick (and blog) about 6 Illamasqua items I picked up the other week. I didnt see this, although for some reason always assumed it would not have enought coverage. My go to foundation is Chanel Mat lumiere (which I hear is being discontinued). Now that my skin is getting sorted (finally) I feel like I might brave some of these lighter weight foundations. Must nip in and swatch this this week! xx

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  21. I struggled to fully read your review as I was memerised by your hair!! It looks incredible. This is on my list of foundations to try, but I am finding it a pull to leave my Estee Lauder DW at the mo.x

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  22. I must say you are looking glowing in these pictures! I haven't tried illamasqua but you must try Jemma Kidd light as air, I think you would between shade 3-4, give it a whirl!x

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  23. i havent tried skin base but to be honest, it is all about your hair... it looks amazing :D

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  24. Skin base looks very lovely on you! I'm not sure why I have been putting off getting this. Probably because I am quite the difficult color match combined with oily skin.

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  25. I've got comb/oily skin and it look soo greasy on me..eugh

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  26. Sounds great! And I do agree with everyone else, your hair does look amazing ;)

    xx

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  27. 1st of all your hair looks AMAZING & your skin lokks flawless love it:) I 've been using Estee Lauder DW for a couple of years now & since it works well on my skin I didnt really changed it sometimes I go to Nars sheer glow or Clarins ones but they have lghter coverage for nicer skin days :) have a lovey week x

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  28. I have such a bad experience with Chanel Mat Lumiere, that I am too afraid of changing anything in my skin routine. Seriously :(

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  29. Such a good review. I bought this and the mua matched me wrong, it is SO pale for me I can't even use it once. I look like a ghost! But it was lovely for the 30 seconds it was on my chin! X

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  30. Brilliant review, I'm using Chanel Mat Lumiere at the moment and while I do love it, you summed up the problem I have with it i.e. it 'doesn't settle into the skin well'. I will definitely be buying this online now that I know they offer a comparison shade guide. Thanks for such a thoughtful review Laura. :) x

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  31. keen on getting my hands on this now, you look gorgeous and like everyones been saying, your hair looks amazing :)

    x

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  32. Gosh Laura you look stunning! I will be checking out this foundation xx

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  33. Oh what a great review, I've never tried this, I really want to!

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  34. Your skin looks flawless and so natural - beeyootiful. I think I'd need more than foundation to look like that though :) xx

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  35. This looks amazing on you, i just can't seem to work it into my skin. I have bought 3 different shades, try on their own, mix them, applied with different brushes but never get the flawless finish everyone else achieves. Think I need to just accept it's not a foundation that suits me x

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  36. Thanks for this review. I have a couple of samples of this and haven't given it a shot. I think I will now.

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  37. It's a shame it doesn't work well with dry skin, cause I'd love to try it just out of curiosity. Ahh well :(

    http://keepcalmandbookworm.blogspot.com/ & http://bookishbeauty.blogspot.com/

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  38. Thanks for the review, Laura! I wish we had Illasmasqua here... I love their polishes and blushes. This foundation seems pretty good too though the packaging is a bit blah.

    xo, alison*elle

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  39. i've never tried their foundations before but i might try and get a sample now, lovely informative post. thanks!

    also, i just wanted to say that i came across your blog today and i think it's really nice! definitely going to be keeping up with your posts in the future!

    helen @ thelovecatsINC

    http://thelovecatsinc.blogspot.com

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  40. At the risk of sounding creepy, you have really beautiful stormy gray eyes :O I'm so jealous!

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  41. I have wanted to try this, and when I went to IMATS I was on the hunt for it, but alas I came home empty. I am pretty keen to try it now though!!

    PS. Love love love the hair!!

    www.teganiasthoughts.blogspot.com

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  42. Hey Laura, quick question: I may be hallucinating, but did you not (at least for a short while) like the face atelier? I believe you loved the finish, but were slightly disappointed at its longevity (or lack thereof)

    How does this compare to the face atelier finish? (that thing is mischievously UNDETECTABLE on me!)

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  43. I absolutely love your blog posts!! Helpful, to say at least! Thank you for indicating the path of great treats and keeping us away from spending money on crapy things!!! Really, really miss your youtube videos!! I hope someday you consider the possibility of making them again!

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  44. I also love skin base. It's in my top 3 favorites.
    MAC Prolongwear is always my number one.

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  45. @Jas - whoops! I forgot about Face Atelier completely and that's bad as it's one of my favourites! Well this has a less dewy finish when compared to Face and also lasts longer!

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  46. Ah my heart sank reading this post, it looks so great on you (love your hair too!) yet when I tried it when it launched a few months ago I just could not get on with it at all. It didn't settle well on my skin and broke me out terrible yet here I am tempted to buy another bottle...

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  47. I've been debating on whether to get this or not since it came out. Think I might have to take the plunge and buy it. So much for my "no more foundation" ban.

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  48. Great review, I've been wanting to try this but wasn't sure whether to splurge or not. Might treat myself to it after xmas! x

    http://wewereraisedbywolves.blogspot.com/

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  49. Hi Laura

    I was just wondering what tool you used to get your hair like that, it's gorgeous, I'm well gel!! :)

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  50. I just wanted to say thank you for posting about the Cheap Monday shirt dress way back - I've had mine for about a month now and basically live in it! So much so that I'm considering getting a spare one since it's on sale at ASOS now - bit of a mad idea! Have you got any other casual dress suggestions along the same lines?

    Thanks!

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  51. Skin Base broke me out badly! I have oily skin and this just makes me super shiney. I really wanted to like this. By the end of the day I just want to wash this off. I think I would like to try real skin.

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  52. Hi! Where is the necklace from that you're wearing in this post? It looks a lot like a design my mom has been trying to look for, and I'd love to pick it up for her. Thanks so much! x

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