Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation
Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation ($46.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a new stick foundation that’s supposed to have full coverage, be long-wearing (12-hours) and waterproof, and feel “weightless” like a powder. There are 26 shades available, so it has a solid range of shades to choose from (I think some of the more comprehensive ranges are closer to 35-45 shades deep), and one thing I liked was that the brand gave descriptions for each shade, not just shades, which is a good starting point in picking from new shades. The brand also has a handy chart that compares matches from their other base products to the new foundation (see it here).
I tried two shades–Warm Ivory and Nude–which are fairly close to my skin tone with Nude running a little darker. For reference, I used a combination of the two shades for the best color match, since I happened to have both, but I would likely lean toward Warm Ivory to pick one for my skin tone (light-medium, light yellow undertones). I loved the way this blended and sat on the skin initially, as it covered very well, evenly, was seamless as promised, but I had a lot of issues with wear–it looked like it was breaking down after five hours of wear. It would look a little separated, slightly patchy, and it never, ever set–it would transfer very easily with the press of my fingertip to my cheek (this was at any given moment while I wore it). The latter part is frustrating, because one may inadvertently rub their nose or scratch an inch, and the foundation will transfer and move at the merest touch.
The foundation has a very creamy, emollient consistency and delivers full coverage readily. I very much advise applying a lot less than you think and blending, buffing, and working it across the planes of the face before adding more. The creaminess of the stick is felt immediately, and it seems to get creamier as it sits on the warm skin, which makes easy to spread across the skin. It is undeniably a full-coverage foundation, but the blendability of the foundation does make it possible to get coverage as sheer as light-medium coverage. At full coverage, it is still a lighter-weight foundation, though not as undetectable as a BB Cream or Tinted Moisturizer (not surprising), but it didn’t feel heavy or uncomfortable; I didn’t feel like I was wearing a mask of product, and the finish was natural enough that it looked more like my skin than anything else. I also liked how it didn’t settle into creases or fine lines, even as it wore away, creasing/settling into lines was the least visible characteristic of wear to me.
I have normal-to-dry skin that leans mostly normal (if I get dry, it’s typically on my eyelids, tip of my nose, and apples of my cheeks) and used the same skincare regimen that I’ve been using for awhile with a variety of other foundations (so I don’t suspect it’s my skincare driving any longevity concerns with this foundation, because I haven’t had sudden issues with wear with my favorites!). The foundation sat well on my skin without emphasizing my skin’s natural texture, and it had a noticeable sheen but didn’t look oily. When I wore the foundation at full coverage, I could start to see it break down after four to five hours of wear (I tested it five times); the foundation separated and looked a little patchy, slightly oily and looked like something was sitting on my face rather than seamlessly blended on my face. When I wore the foundation at more medium coverage, the wear was better at six hours, but I still couldn’t get close to the 12-hours it is marketed as. I also tried using Hourglass’ Mineral Veil primer underneath, and here were my results: at full coverage, eight to nine hours; at medium coverage, ten to eleven hours.
As a note, I’ve read and seen a lot of complaints regarding the amount of product in the tube–0.25 oz.–and a lot of comparisons are made to liquid formulas (usually containing 1.0 fl. oz.), which are not quite the same, but it’ll depend on your formulation, how much you use, and so forth. It is a lot like a twist-up pencil eyeliner and one you sharpen; they have standard amounts and which you prefer will come down to use. That being said, Hourglass’ 0.25 oz. is noticeably lower than other similarly-priced brands: Shiseido The Makeup Stick is $38.50/0.38 oz. or $101.32/oz.; Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Stick is $43.00 for 0.44 oz. or $97.73/oz.; Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick is $46.00 for 0.31 oz. or $148.39/oz.; Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation is $82.00 for 0.50 oz. or $164.00/oz.; and Lancome’s Teint Idole Foundation Stick is $42.00 for 0.31 oz. or $135.48/oz. Hourglass, for comparison, comes in at $184.00/oz. — and that makes it even pricier than luxury-level Tom Ford.
Lastly, I primarily used Hourglass’ new Vanish Foundation Brush ($46.00), which I am quite fond of, and it certainly works exceptionally well with the new Vanish foundation. It’s a dense, lightly angled brush with a short handle that is very, very soft and smooth. I’ve had no issues cleaning it thoroughly (I use a mix of Dr. Bronner’s Liquid Soap and water), and it doesn’t take an extraordinarily long time to dry. The new brush worked well with other cream and liquid foundations to yield very smooth, even, and streak-free results. I also used the following brushes with the new Vanish Foundation and had good results: Real Techniques Expert Face, Tom Ford 02 Foundation Brush, Shiseido Foundation Brush, Kat Von D Lock-It Edge Foundation Brush, Marc Jacobs The Face I, II, and III Brushes, and IT Cosmetics Velvet Luxe LBD Foundation Brush #302; I also used it with a damp Beautyblender, which I liked but found to soak up product a bit too much for my personal liking.Brush Dimensions: 4.5 inches / 11.5 centimeters in total length; 28mm in width and depth, 26mm in height.