Apr 152014
 

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One of my favorite makeup discoveries of this pre-summer season is Clarins Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Booster ($30/0.50 oz.). To use this product, you place 1-3 drops into the palm of your hand, mix with your current moisturizer or serum, and place over your face and neck just before going to sleep. In the morning, I am waking up to the most beautiful, subtle, natural looking soft tan. No streaking or orange, really it’s absolutely perfect. Clarins Golden Glow Booster is now available from Nordstrom.com (currently 10% off), Saks Fifth Avenue, and Sephora.

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When I first read Clarins’ description, it sounded like just the right product for Spring. I wear sunscreen year round for anti-aging and to avoid other adverse effects of UV light. Still, I must admit that I look much better with a touch of color. This video made the experiment irresistible (it’s also helpful to show how the product is used, and is a short 1  1/2 minutes):

I don’t notice any unpleasant self-tanner scent, although it may be that I’m asleep so I’m unaware of any.  Honestly the results are extraordinary. Clarins has always been highly regarded for facial self-tanners, but this one in particular gives the most beautiful, natural glow.

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I’ve used this most mixed with a vitamin C serum (the Paula’s Choice reviewed here), as well as cream moisturizers. Every morning when I wake up, the glow is so good. If I use it several nights in a row, I start to accumulate more color. The color fades if I skip more than a day. If you’d like a more subtle effect, use just one or two drops. Enclosed instruction sheet (click to enlarge):

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Although your results may vary, I have to  say that this is one product that worked so beautifully for me that I couldn’t forgive myself if I didn’t share it with you.  Beautiful results, easy to use, and well worth the $30 price point. Love, love, love.

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Clarins Golden Glow Booster is now available from Nordstrom.com (currently 10% off), Saks Fifth Avenue, and Sephora.

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Apr 082014
 

Clarins Opal Primers01

Clarins has recently introduced two shades of the Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base in 01 Rose and 02 Champagne ($37 each). Who doesn’t like champagne and roses? Given my ever-present interest in the perfect completion, I thought that I would take these out for a spin. (note: These are available at Macy’s and Nordstrom)

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According to Clarins, these Complexion Bases are each “a moisturizing base that illuminates and corrects your skin tone, while hydrating and soothing with moisture-rich Katafray Bark extract.” The company explains: “Two shades cast a veil of corrective light on the skin: Rose brightens all complexions, Champagne corrects redness. In just seconds, the complexion becomes luminous and radiant.” I used these as moisturizing primers with a touch of sheer color correction.

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My thoughts on the “PRO’s” of these products:

  • Although not advertised as such, both helped provide a smooth base for foundation and really extended the wear time for foundation.
  • On my light, warm skin tone (MAC NC15/Chanel Ivoire), I preferred 01 Rose on a completely subjective basis. The rose color seemed to add the slightest hint of luminosity (it was not as dramatic as Burberry Fresh Glow). More significantly, Rose neutralized the warm tones in my skin.
  • Clarins’ claim that these are moisturizing held true for me. My skin looked refreshed and healthy after removal. Neither of these had any drying effect.
  • Even more delightfully, neither seemed to make my skin any oilier or “glowier.” Perhaps the hydration was not overdone, but my skin looked very good without making my forehead or t-zone area break through with shine.

Now for the “CON”:

  • Unfortunately, there is some ingredient in these that disagreed with my skin.  This may not happen to you, but after using these continuously for 2-3 days, I noticed that some of my pores were clogging. Now that I’ve discontinued use, this effect has stopped. Although I can’t be certain that it was this product, I’m a bit wary and thought it best to pass this along, so that you can sample before you buy.

Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

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Here are a few heavy swatches of the shades (you’ll want to use these more sheerly):

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Another:

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Overall, if my skin had agreed with these, I would have loved them (especially the Rose!). These gave me an excellent base for long-term foundation wear, nice skin-care benefits, and lovely texture. Clarins Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base are available at Macy’s and Nordstrom.

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Apr 022014
 

Clarins Everlasting Foundation03

Sometimes I think that French brands are under-rated to U.S. buyers. I remember that in the past, I’d been very impressed with some Clarins complexion products. Recently, I went foundation sampling at my local Clarins counter to look at some foundations. My sample of the Clarins Skin Illusion foundation looked amazing on my skin for the first several hours. It gave me medium coverage, a perfect finish, with just a barest touch of skin-like glow. However, I noticed that my samples allowed about 6-8 hours of perfection. With that experience in mind, I wanted to try Clarins long-wear foundation, the Clarins Everlasting Foundation ($39 each).

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If you don’t mind, I’m going to sketch out some quick thoughts on this one. I’m finding these days that unless I type something out quickly, the posts aren’t posted as frequently as I’d like them to be. Perhaps right now, the perfect is the enemy of the “getting it done.” My testing was done with a layer of Clarins Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base ($37) (each available colors, on various different days).

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First of all, this foundation provide all-day matte coverage. The matte effect persisted for 15 hour days despite the fact that: 1) I was using a glowy primer; and 2) I have combination skin that usually gets breakthrough “glow” around 2 p.m.  I mean, it has truly been a while since any foundation that I have tried more than delivered on its promises. Truly impressive lasting power.

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The coverage is medium-to-full. If you have discoloration or marks, Clarins Everlasting can easily be built up to cover almost anything. As a matte, I didn’t find the texture forgiving, but it didn’t accentuate any problems either. The color is high-pigment, so I didn’t get any heavy foundation look when applied.

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Clarins Everlasting has a handy, sanitary pump dispenser.The packaging is gorgeous–a frosted glass looks wonderful on your counter (although is not travel-friendly). Ingredient lists (click to enlarge):

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Overall, if you are looking for a long-wearing matte foundation, Clarins Everlasting is an excellent choice.  My local counter carries little sample packets so that you can test the color range–perhaps yours does too. If so, please take advantage because with a higher coverage foundation the match with your natural skin tone becomes quite important, in my experience.

On a final note, I ultimately concluded that Clarins Everlasting wasn’t not an ideal foundation for me because I prefer s foundation with a slight sheen. For a matte look, I’m still happy with the Burberry Velvet. Nonetheless, I thought it valuable to pass along my experience in case this one might suit you perfectly.

Available at Nordstrom and Macy’s.

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