Giorgio Armani's Luminous Silk Compact is an ultra-fine, pressed powder that goes on smoother than smooth, with a nearly imperceptible finish. Using it as your foundation provides only a sheer hint of coverage; where this powder really excels is setting makeup and reducing oily shine without looking heavy or chalky. While you don't need to pay this much for a good pressed powder, fans of Armani's makeup, read on!
Though Giorgio Armani calls this a "luminous matte finish," that's a misnomer—it isn't shimmery or glow-y in the least. Perhaps what they meant by that is that it doesn't have a harsh matte look? We'd agree with that—so don't expect this to have any sort of luminizing effect. It's matte in both appearance and feel, making it an ideal option for normal to oily or combination skin.
Giorgio Armani goes on to claim that the included "dual-use applicator gives a versatile makeup result." Essentially, it's a double-sided powder puff/sponge, and the brand states that you can use one side to set your makeup and the other to apply this for a "lightweight foundation finish." We found it better to use a regular powder brush when you want to set your makeup—the applicator works OK to apply this as a powder foundation.
Color-wise, there's an adequate round-up of neutral shades and because they go on so sheer, they adapt easily to a variety of skin tones from light to medium-deep. FYI: Armani claims this is a buildable powder, but even with piling this on, it barely qualifies as medium coverage.
Kudos to the team at Armani for its well-designed packaging—the compact features a magnetic closure which makes it feasible to toss it in your purse and go without worrying it will come undone. Of course, there's a mirror for touch ups on-the-go.
As far as the formula goes, our only complaint is the inclusion of potentially irritating fragrant ingredients. Thankfully, in the low concentration used here, its scent wasn't detectable as we applied the powder. Nevertheless, it is something for those with sensitive skin to be aware of.
In the end, we're giving this a good rating as a setting powder that adds a slight hint coverage. Is it $$$ good? That's open to interpretation—you can certainly find less expensive powders that perform as well, but if you're in the mood to splurge, it's a worthwhile option.
Giorgio Armani At-A-Glance
Strengths: Outstanding foundations; superb powder textures; a brilliant shimmer fluid; perfect bronzers; some excellent lip color options; a neutral palette makes this line a must-see.
Weaknesses: Expensive; the skincare is underwhelming, especially given the cost (though the claims sound good!); some of the SPF-rated products do not supply adequate broad spectrum protection; most of the mascaras aren't as impressive as they should be.
Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani is credited with giving tailored elegance, power, and sex appeal to standbys like men's suits, and turning Hollywood's A-list stars into fashion icons as they parade through countless award ceremonies adorned in his simple yet elegant creations. According to Armani, "Elegance doesn't mean being noticed, it means being remembered." That statement has been parlayed into the designer's makeup collection, where the products are replete with the textures, colors, and flawless application that assure your natural beauty will be memorable rather than masked.
Because Armani has always been passionate about textures, it's no surprise that his makeup (which is the main reason to check out this line) presents an impressive collection that features some of the smoothest, lightest textures you're likely to find. From foundations to powders, eyeshadows, and mascaras—even pencils—the makeup selection includes some truly stellar products. According to the brochure for Armani's makeup, the supreme textures and silky application are the result of Micro-fil technology. This supposedly allows for a precise blending and layering of select ingredients, offering a heightened sense of color that fits like a second skin.
Regardless of how that technology is labeled, almost all of the makeup contains standard silicone polymers along with ordinary ingredients like nylon-12. Of course, many cosmetics companies have their equivalent version of Micro-fil, but Armani seems to have taken it one step further, though not always toward desired results. For example, the eyeshadows, while very smooth and easy to blend, aren't much for intensity, a point the counter personnel made clear.
There are a few other instances where the pricey products aren't all they're made out to be, but this is the world of cosmetics, and although the fantasy is for every product to be perfect, that's hardly ever the reality. Still, there are many compelling reasons to explore this collection. Although not fully distributed across the United States, it has a presence in most major cities and the products may be purchased on Armani's Web site. Makeup is where it's at for Giorgio Armani's cosmetics line. The skin care was a blatant, exceedingly overpriced afterthought and is not worth considering.
For more information about Giorgio Armani, owned by L'Oreal, call (877) ARMANI-3 or visit www.giorgioarmanibeauty-usa.com.
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