In an attempt to keep "foundation-free" all summer, I tested a variety of tinted moisturizers, BB creams and Giorgio Armani's new Maestro Fusion Makeup SPF 15. This last one of the bunch I did not purchase in full size. I started with a sample jar from the nearest Neiman Marcus along with a tiny sample jar of the Maestro Eraser Dark Circle Concealer. The shades provided were 4.5 for the Maestro Fusion Makeup and 2.5 for the concealer.
Applying the Maestro Fusion Makeup for the first time, I was told to use my fingers to blend the product into the skin. The associate said that if I used a brush, I would waste too much product. Massaging it into the skin, I sensed a certain sliminess which I initially mistook for silicone. I have a real issue with silicone in foundation products but I was told that what I'm feeling is the oil in the product. It is actually an ultra-fine oil-pigment suspension so it's cleverly moisturizing at the same time, or so I've been told.
The coverage was surprisingly good despite the lightweight feel of the product. The unevenness on my cheeks was neutralized immediately and I had a good feeling about it on that initial outing. However, subsequent use had me questioning the moisturizing properties of the product. How is it that an oil-based product clings to dry patches on my face? The nose area and a small section on the side of my mouth didn't look right after I applied it. Furthermore, my skin looked dry all over. My solution was to apply Clarins Beauty Flash Balm on the patchy areas and I think that it solved the problem but it minimized coverage further. The color match wasn't perfect (on the fair side perhaps but it's summer. I wear 4.5 in the Luminous Silk Foundation) but not poor.
Continued use has simply left me undecided. I probably won't purchase it because I always end up applying some other moisturizing substance over it and that hardly seems to be the easy, one-step option promised. It reminds me of dry oil with pigment.
One day, I tried a different tactic. Applying everything with just fingers, I put on moisturizer, primer, the Armani Maestro Fusion Makeup and then an illuminating tinted moisturizer that was one shade too dark for me over it and the result was perfect. I got some coverage to neutralize redness. I got a little color and I got a little bronzy glow going. So what was that illuminating tinted moisturizer that I used? The Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers SPF 30.
I had this tube since the beginning of summer and used it a couple of times but decided that I didn't like it because I bought a shade that was too dark for me. How they determine what is "light to medium" is beyond me. I thought I'd keep it as a bronzing liquid, to mix with foundation products that were too light but I always looked shiny when I put it on in the summer. It didn't work for me at all during hot and humid days. Now that it's cooler and no longer humid, I find that the finish isn't shiny at all. In fact, it delivers just the dewiness that Armani's Maestro Fusion Makeup wasn't giving me. So I guess I'm glad I didn't give it away.
I loved the effect of the Armani Maestro Fusion Makeup SPF 15 with the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers on top. But I feel like I didn't like either product enough to repurchase/purchase in full size. Armani's Maestro Fusion Makeup sounds like a dream but isn't perfect. For a little less, I'll buy another bottle of Burberry Foundation instead. The Maestro Eraser concealer is promising though. If they had come out with it while I was working on my concealer feature, I think it would have been quite the contender. I might want to test that out some more.