Prep, Perfect, Set feat. Becca Cosmetics*
It's been a hot minute since I spoke about Becca Cosmetics on this blog and today is a lucky day - because I have three exciting products to share with you guys, including the brand's blurring primer, full coverage foundation and pink-toned powder. So, if you're curious to hear more (and see some swatches) then just keep on scrolling!
Prep: Velvet Blurring Primer
The first product we're going to discuss is the brand new Velvet Blurring Primer. It retails for 38 USD and contains 1oz/30 ml of an actual product.
Claims: vanishes the appearance of pores, fine lines, imperfections/ creates a flawless, airbrushed base/ absorbs excess oils/ extends the wear of make-up/ brightens/ velvety smooth, soft-focus finish.
Packaging: although this is a very typical Becca bottle, unlike Backlight Priming Filter and First Light Priming Filter, Velvet Blurring Primer is made of plastic (instead of glass). It has that same soft-touch, rubberized light gray packaging, which is similar to their liquid highlighters and foundation. The pump is nice and sturdy, so it's easy to maneuver it in order to get as much/little product as you want.
Texture: now, the most unique thing about this primer is that it has one of a kind "liquid-to-powder" formula. I have (personally) never tried anything quite like it. The primer is slightly tinted and has a warm, light apricot undertone (by the way Apricot Haze is the official shade name). The tone of it is very subtle though, so it won't leave an orangey cast or act as a colour-corrector. On the contrary - apricot will help brighten your complexion a bit - no matter what skin tone you have. This primer is quite sheer and has a universally flattering, almost undetectable hue to it.
Application: although very liquidy at first, once you have blended and buffed it into your skin - it turns into a true powder. Magic or what, but it sets satin/matte and when you touch it - it truly feels like velvet. To me the finish is similar to a very smooth, translucent powder, which doesn't add colour or coverage, but makes your skin look like a beautiful piece of porcelain. My biggest tip: work from the back of your hand. Pump out a bit of the primer, dip your finger in it and massage it into your skin in circular motions. You could use a brush, but I feel like fingers work best with primers.
As always, keeping my swatches ugly and unedited, so that you guys can see colours and texture better. This is what Velvet Blurring Primer looks like when it is freshly applied and once it fully sets to a powdery finish.
Liquid turns into powder in about a minute, so you do get enough playtime to fully blend it out before it sets. You might even feel this product on your fingertips; almost as if you have a bit of powder on them.
Wear: since this a very lightweight primer, you don't even notice it on your skin. It's not as thick as other blurring primers on the market and it won't feel silicone-y either. However! If you are extremely dry, I am afraid you won't like this product at all. Since it has a powdery finish, it might be a bit uncomfortable to wear for someone, whose skin is matte and dehydrated by default.
I have dry skin and on me this primer is borderline comfortable. It can also accentuate some of my drier patches. I would only reach out for it on days when I want my complexion to look a bit more matte, but that doesn't happen very often. Yet if you are someone, who tends to get quite oily and need a good perfecting primer, which also extends the wear of make-up - look this way. My make-up does last longer whenever I choose to use it and if you are on a dry side - you won't even need to powder your face.
Verdict: although this is a beautiful product, I just don't think that it's designed for my skin type. However, I do think it will be brilliant for those of you, who have an oilier T-zone or combination/oily skin type in general. If you are dry, definitely try the brand's Backlight & First Light Priming Filter. Those are my holy grail and work so well for us Sahara-skin gals! Read more about them here.
Perfect: Ultimate Coverage Foundation
Aka Ultimate Coverage Complexion Creme is the brand's full-coverage foundation, which was recently revamped; plus a few shades were renamed (Driftwood - previously Nude; Maple - previously Tobacco; Espresso - previously Mink). There are 20 shades available (everything from Porcelain to Cacao) and it retails for 44 USD, containing 1.01 oz/ 30 ml of the product.
Claims: full-coverage/ lightweight/ breathable/ lasts all day/ transfer-proof/ water-resistant/ oil-free/ contains 22% water to hydrate for "coverage without cake".
Packaging: it is very similar to the primer we just talked about; same beautiful bottle with a metallic cap and rubberized outer packaging. Light, practical, perfect for travels. This product comes with a pump.
Shades: as I have mentioned in all of my previous Becca reviews, the shade selection is always on point. The one I've been testing is called Buttercup and it is described as medium beige with yellow/golden undertones. Now, since Becca kindly sent this product to me for a review, I couldn't really choose my shade - which in this case would be Cashmere (neutral beige, neutral undertones). However! I figured out a way how to make Buttercup lighter and less yellow.
This is what shade Buttercup looks like freshly applied and blended. As per usual - keeping them swatches unedited. I took these photos using a natural daylight.
As you can probably tell, this shade is a tiny bit dark/touch too yellow for me. Although my hand is obviously darker than my face, I would typically use a neutral-toned foundation that is on a lighter side. Buttercup would be perfect for someone, who is NC30. My perfect shades are: Shell (Hourglass), 1.5 Cream (Tom Ford) or NC20-25 MAC (which is a touch yellow, but manageable). From what I can tell, these don't oxidize.
Texture: initially, I thought it would be quite thick, but surprisingly this foundation is incredibly smooth and creamy. It builds up nicely; doesn't cling to dry patches, pores or any other imperfections, which is awesome. You can use a brush or sponge with it; both methods work really well. Becca recommend using their The One Perfecting Brush with it, which is incredibly fluffy and smooth. I normally use a make-up sponge with this foundation - but I guess it all comes down to personal preference.
Please click on each image to zoom in
Application: as I have mentioned earlier, shade Buttercup is a touch too yellow (I have a neutral skin tone; a bit of pink and yellow if you will) and one shade darker than my actual skin tone. I would say it is a colour I would wear if I had a tan. But there are a few tricks that save the day: (a) I mix Buttercup with Backlight Priming Filter using 50/50 or 40/60 ratio, depending on how much coverage I want to get; (b) I then apply a tiny amount of a slightly lighter shade of concealer under my eyes, on my forehead and chin. I love Aqua Luminous Concealer in Porcelain for that (I typically use Fair, which is one shade darker). You can find all swatches here. Since it is a water-based concealer, it just adds a very light sheen and brightens the face; in other words - helps balance things out a bit.
Now, amazing thing about Ultimate Coverage foundation is - it is incredibly lightweight and you can go from light to medium, medium to full in 1, 2, 3. It is so easy. I know, Becca never claimed you could achieve all three types of coverage with this little guy - but as a customer and someone, who has tried a ton of foundation - I say you can! Even without mixing it with any primer. I typically prefer a light coverage anyway and if I use less and blend it out evenly with a make-up sponge - it will do the trick. This foundation layers like a champ, so you can add more to areas that need it, while keeping it relatively light in areas where you want your skin to peek through. It is really that good.
Wear & Finish: I was afraid that it would set matte, but thank goodness - it has a very natural, creamy finish. Once it sets, it won't move and the best way to remove it would be with an oil-based cleanser first and micellar water second. This foundation lasts all day on me; it doesn't get shiny or greasy, which can happen even to "the driest" of us living in the desert. It does wear off a bit after 6-7 hours, but not in a blotchy or unforgiving way. I have quite a sensitive skin and it did not cause any problems; also no extra clogged pores, which is an instant bonus in my book. You can always tweak and make it more dewy/matte by using different primers.
If you have dry skin, want to sheer it out + add more glow = mix it with Backlight Priming Filter.
If you have oily skin + want to make it matte(r) = apply Velvet Blurring Primer first, wait for a minute and then go in with your foundation.
Verdict: I didn't expect it, but I am very impressed with Ultimate Coverage Complexion Creme. I thought that just like majority of full-coverage foundations, this one would feel a bit heavy and drying on my already dry face. But! That is not the case with this fella. I like the fact that it doesn't slide around and looks quite natural (not too dewy, not too matte). If you work in thin layers (apply, blend, add more, blend etc.) you can really get flawless results with it. This product covers most of my spots or freckles; but I still prefer to use it lightly and add concealer where I need a touch more coverage. I do set it with a loose powder, which works perfect for me.
Set: Soft Light Blurring Powder
Now, you might remember Soft Light Blurring Powder which was released earlier this year; back then it was only available in one colour called Golden Hour. But Becca didn't stop just there - please meet Pink Haze. [It is so cute, I just can't].
So what's new? This powder retails for 38 USD and you get 0.35 oz/ 10 g here.
Claims: blurs imperfections/ brightens/ sets/ creates a "beauty filter".
Packaging: it is exactly the same as Golden Hour; beautiful clear acrylic with a clear bottom, so that you can see powder through it. The only thing - the powder might spill a bit, so make sure to open it carefully. I guess, this is something that happens with most loose powders anyway, so I am not mad about that.
Texture: it is just as soft as the original powder. Very smooth, blendable and lightweight.
Colour: the pink hue that Becca have created is incredibly beautiful. It is not too light, not too dark - a perfect in-between if you ask me. Once you blend it, it almost disappears, but a product like this will add a light pink hue to your complexion for a brightening effect. It also has some light-reflective particles in it, which create a subtle glow and help this powder look more vibrant (as opposed to flat).
Here is what this powder looks like swatched on the right side of my hand; you might be able to see a very faint pink hue, which actually is something that flatters my skin tone a lot. I find that it adds just the right amount of brightness, without looking OTT.
Application: you can use any soft brush you desire with this powder; I use my classic powder brush with it and it gets the job done. I normally sprinkle a small amount into the cap and swirl brush in it, so that bristles get coated evenly. There is no kick-up or chalky feeling to it. Powder is so finely milled, it almost feels like air. Once I am done with everything - I just dust it lightly all over the face and call it a day. You can use Pink Haze under your eyes too.
But I should warn you guys - this is not a product you "bake" with; you should not over-apply it either, because it might translate as straight-up pink! if you do so. Use it as sparingly as you can and it will transform your complexion from dull to gorgeous in a few brush strokes.
Wear: this is not a mattifying product by any means; but it does have more of that flawless, velvety finish. It truly does blur my skin, just like Hourglass powders do. It does create a soft veil and on me - it will get a touch dewy during the day (due to a humid climate here in Dubai). If you have oily or even combination skin, I would probably use a mattifying primer underneath it and apply a light coat of powder to just "set and perfect". I think it is a brilliant formula for someone with normal, normal-to-dry and dry skin.
Verdict: I love Golden Hour, but I think I love Pink Haze ten times more. It adds such a beautiful healthy touch to my complexion; especially if your foundation is a touch yellow - this can fix and balance it. Even on those days when I don't wear foundation, I just use some of the Backlight/First Light Priming Filter and set my T-zone with it - flawless in seconds. Now, I am not sure how a colour like this would translate on different skin tones. Becca label Pink Haze as a "universal" shade and I did ask my mom to try it; she is darker than me and is NC35 in MAC or Driftwood in Becca. And it looked just as good on her skin tone, so I guess Becca know what's up! I think Pink Haze will look exceptional on someone with a yellow undertone. If you are not a powder gal, but feel the need to set certain areas now again - these powders are perfect for that.