Saturday, March 24, 2012

Nars Tinted Moisturizer review and swatches

Nars TM was just a rumor for quite a while but at the end of 2011( I think!) it was oficially announced that Monsieur Francois Nars was venturing in the Tinted moisturizer market. 

I do not own any TMs, I have a tinted sunscreen from MD formulations, and I also have a BB Cream but neither of those is a TM per se although they have similar properties. I have only once purchased a cheapo DS TM and it went in the garbage a week later:) As far as I know one of the more popular tinted moisturizers out there is the Laura Mercier TM  that retails for $42. I almost bought it for my mom but I wasn't sure which shade to get her so I skipped, @$42 it would have been a costly mistake if I had gotten the wrong shade. My problem with TM is with what  they claim to be- a golden mix between moisturizer and foundation that's supposed to hydrate your skin while providing light coverage. So why would I buy  TM when I already have a foundation and a moisturizer that I can mix if I wanted to sheer out my FDTN? Also TMs are a little tricky with oily skin and my skin is rather oily especially in warmer weather. 
Anyway, I was staying away from TMs...until I read all the wonderful and glowing reviews the NARS TM started getting soon after official release. It was a Nordstrom exclusive for quite a while and since there is no Nordies around here I couldn't really see it in person. I was tempted to order blindly but I hate returning stuff and at that price tag ($42 again) I wanted to first be able to try it.
The glowing reviews kept popping up and my eagerness and curiosity were up the roof-  I finally just decided to call Nordies and ask for samples and pay $5 for shipping( thats what nordies online discussion team had suggested doing). I called Nordies and if you didn't know - they have wonderful Customer Service!!! They transferred me to the beauty dept. at the closest store to me -somewhere in NJ. The lady I spoke to asked about my shade in other FDTN-the only other HE fdtn I own is Estee Lauder DW Light in intensity 2 and that colour is slightly off. I had done my homework and I knew I will be between shades 1 and 2 (Finland and Alaska, with Finland suiting NC 15 and Alaska good for NC 25-30) So I asked the SA - Vanessa if I could be sent two samples - for both shades and she was very nice and took my address and didn't say anything about for paying for shipping!!! She just asked that should I decide to buy the product, to call the store directly instead of ordering online! Either way I called on Thursday and got my Nordies package the following Tuesday- with the very generous samples of both shades ( the containers were full of product, thank you Vanessa!)
I digress! So I had enough product for at least a week testing each shade, mixing and doing comparisons. Nars claims that this product hydrates, brightens and perfects, that it's like your bare skin but better. I can't say they are lying.
Application, look & feel: The consistency is watery and it blends on the skin with ease - you can use fingers or brush. It leaves skin with a slight glow but you can't actually see the product on the skin. 
Wear:The best thing about the NARS TM is that it looks better with wear. I can't say if it will withstand the test of OIL (my skin) since it hasn't been that warm yet. I believe it lasted well for the most part of the day- 6-8 hrs. 
Shades: As I said I got the lightest shade - Finland and the second lightest Alaska.  I can't really decide between the two. In swatches they seem quite different with Finland being more neutral (not pink IMO) and light and Alaska looking quite yellow and darker. On my face they look almost identical. I think I liked Finland better on me but I posted pictures wearing both shades (one on each side) on MUA and the overwhelming opinion was that Alaska matches better. The thing with tinted moisturizers is that they are lot more forgiving when it comes to shades- you can get away with a slightly lighter/darker shade so that's why both shades seem to work for me.
Final Verdict: I really like this product but I don't love it. I don't love the price either. I don't think it makes me look exponentially better than any other product I have-say my favourite DS FDTN - Maybelline Dream Smooth mousse (review coming soon). I am also curious to try the new Estee Lauder Invisible Fluid foundation which is also getting excellent reviews and it's slightly cheaper at $35.  I haven't said NO to this product and I do recommend it for people that have relatively good skin (and budget) and want some really nice hydrating foundation alternative. 
BEWARE bare face pictures after the jump! Open at your own risk. I have included bare face pics and then pics with only Nars TM and a lippie. 
Check them out here and sorry for the long post:

As you can see I have a huge crater-wound under my eye so you can judge the coverage of the TM by its ability to cover this botched attempt to pick at a pimple in a sensitive area.

So here I am wearing Alaska on the wounded side of my face and Finland on the other. As you can tell there is no big difference between shades but maybe Alaska does look like a better much. The product was not able to cover the blemish but I didn't think it would. It did blur it a little though:)  

I am also including the pictures I posted on MUA using both shades again. I think the finish of the product can be seen better from those pictures. 
FInland on the right side, Alaska on the left

Hope that was helpful to someone!!

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