Today I'm reviewing Illuminare Liquid Mineral Foundation for you guys! Truth be told, I haven't read one bad review on it, which is highly unusual, especially for foundation. They offer samples on their website in their three most common shades for $15, so I figured I'd give it a shot!
When I first received them in the mail, this is what my package looked like:
Clearly one of the little tubes exploded or got smooshed or something. I called their Customer Service and they sent me a replacement for free which I received in 3 days flat. So, major props for their customer service right off the bat.
Finding a foundation to match my skin is impossible. That's why I like that three shades were included. The darkest shade they sent would never work on me in a million years, but the other two I thought maybe. Portofino Porcelain (light) is an ivory beige with neural undertones, and the lightest shade they sent. Florentine Fair is medium with yellow/beige undertones. Lastly, Sienna Sun is tan, think J.Lo, for those with olive complexions. They also have three different finishes. Moisturizing finish is for that dewy look, for those with normal to dry skin. Concealing is semi-mate and can be used for full coverage foundation or even as a concealer, for normal to combo skin types. Lastly, matte is medium to full coverage for those with normal to oily skin. So you get 3 shades in 3 finishes for a total of 9 products.
All of their foundations are vegan and cruelty free. They don't use any artificial dyes, colors, fragrances, carmine, mica, or any other skin irritating ingredient and they're dermatologist recommended. All of this is wonderful for a vegan with lots of skin sensitivities and that's prone to breakouts!
Let's talk colors first. All in all they only offer five shades. Skin comes in more than five shades. That's probably my only real con is their lack of shades. They say on their website you can mix and match to create your perfect shade but honestly, who has time for that? The Portofino Porcelain which I thought would work best on my skin is too light. It also casts a weird kind of gray color on my skin. I mentioned above Sienna Sun wouldn't work at all as a foundation, but I'm thinking of trying it as a bronzer. I don't wanna waste it. The Florentine Fair is the closest to my shade. It's not a perfect match, but once I apply my Jane Iredale powder foundation on top it matches pretty good.
I wanted to do like a before and after kinda deal, completely unretouched so you can get an idea of the color and coverage. As you can see, I have my acne scar on top (which is my most noticble one), as well as two pimples that I undoubtedly picked and made 10x worse (thank you anxiety.) You can see on my right side some general redness and uneven skin tone. The pictures on the left are no makeup at all, the middle is just the Illuminare foundation, and the right side is the Illuminare foundation with my Jane Iredale powder on top.
For this, I used the Concealing Finish. I don't need to apply it all over my face, just the spots that need it. I have a feeling when the summertime hits I'll need more the Mattifying one, then the winter I'll probably need the Moisturzing. I really love that they offer three finishes. My skin changes with the season, so I need my makeup to do that too.
A little of this goes a long way. I only really need a few dabs of it and I use my EcoTools Beauty Blender Sponge to apply it and it works really well. My redness is literally gone after applying it. It does a pretty good job at covering my dark spots too. Not perfect, which is fine because I don't expect perfection, but better than anything I've ever used. Unfortunately it can only do so much on picked spots, as you should expect, since the surface is so uneven. But it did cover them generally well, so I was happy about that. I'm most happy because this foundation isn't cakey and even though I'm only using it on certain spots of my face, my face blends together seamlessly.
They have a special pad to apply it on their website, which I plan on buying when I buy the full size, which I'll be doing. I'm impressed with the coverage of this foundation, and I'm most impressed that it doesn't feel heavy or cakey and hasn't broken me out worse than I currently am. I'm having a bad skin funk right now (I think due to stress) and I'm glad this hasn't made it worse. This foundation comes in .5 oz tubes, so no frills and nothing fancy about the packaging. It's made just to be used properly and that's it, which is great. Make haste not waste! And it retails for $29. Definitely pricier by volume than most foundations. But since this is so concentrated you will use less, so the price seems fair all things considered.
Personally, I'm a fan. And I highly suggest spending the $15 to get the samples before making a full size purchase. If you have any questions, I'm happy to help answer them as best I can!