This is a truly creamy, fragrance-free foundation that offers a lot of moisture for dry to very dry skin, which is notable as there are few foundations out there for those seeking such a formula. It's so moisturizing that if you have even remotely oily areas, this will prove far too emollient and slip off by mid-day.
Radiant Cream Compact Foundation provide light to medium coverage with an attractive dewy finish that doesn't highlight pores or wrinkles. Though a sponge is included in the compact, we would recommend applying this with a buffing brush for the best result, as a sponge can deposit far too much product on your face.
Like many of the NARS foundation range, this comes in a generous range of shades, with colors for very light and very dark skin tones, although the Mont Blanc shade does have a stronger pink undertone that tends to look unnatural, even on fair complexions.
It's also worth noting that NARS chose a different approach to the packaging for this foundation. The foundation and compact are sold separately. For $38 you get a relatively small amount of foundation in a lightweight plastic container that you snap in to the compact, the latter of which adds $10 to the total price. This may be initially off-putting, but if you find this foundation to be a favorite, you may appreciate the money saved in the long run. We listed the price of the foundation without the compact because it is usable this way, but it holds up much better in the sold-separately compact.
Note: This contains some antioxidants, but they won't remain stable given that this foundation will be routinely exposed to light and air during each use.
Frenchman Francois Nars has been painting the faces of New York's top models since arriving in the United States in 1984. Their images and his handiwork have been seen on the covers of countless fashion magazines, most notably Vogue and Elle. As the story often goes for the talented makeup artists who have become celebrities in their own right, Nars became frustrated with the state of available makeup and, surprise, another cosmetic line was born.
Beginning (as Bobbi Brown did) by launching a small collection of lipsticks in 1994, the clamor for the colors was incredible, and demand for more NARS products from the artist grew. Shortly thereafter an entire product line followed, gaining attention with vibrant, deeply pigmented colors, sleek, tactile-enhanced packaging and risqué shade names.
As an overview, NARS makeup has many strengths—it reaches its zenith with blushes, tinted moisturizer, foundations, brushes, and lipsticks. If you’re a fan of bold colors, you’ll find them here, and the brand offers consistently impressive foundations and concealers. NARS consistently impresses when it comes to offering a wide range of shades to suit nearly any skin tone.
Where NARS often falls short is in the amount of fragrance added to many of their skincare formulas. In some cases, the amount and specific fragrance ingredients chosen outweigh the potential benefits, so be sure to double check their review before buying. Overall, NARS offers a lot to love, and if you don’t mind splurging a bit (as their prices can be on the spendy side) there are quite a few makeup picks that come with our highest recommendations.
Strengths: Superior foundations and foundation shade options; excellent blushes; splurge-worthy lipsticks; beautiful bronzers and consistently impressive color products.
Weaknesses: Can be expensive; a few skincare formulas contain high amounts of fragrance.
For more information about NARS, owned by Shiseido, call (888) 788-6277 or visit www.narscosmetics.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
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