The NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer is one of my favorite go-to products, and one of the few higher end products that I repurchase despite the high price tag. Part of the reason I can get over the price is that you get a lot of product in a bottle, 1.9 oz, about twice what you get with a lot of other foundations. It works just the same as a foundation for me, and it’s not like I need to use more product in an application. I think I use less, actually. The other reason why I repurchase this is that it really makes my skin look like it’s just naturally more healthy and radiant than it looks on its own. When I receive compliments my skin, I most likely wearing this.
I initially was introduced to this a couple years back when I wandered into a Sephora and asked for new foundation recommendations. I spoke with a really nice sales associate who pretty quickly zoomed in on color matching me for this tinted moisturizer. I don’t need a ton of coverage, I just like to have my complexion evened out, and I love a glow of good health. The sales associated noted that not only does this tinted moisturizer improve the appearance of skin, it also has good ingredients that help improve skin’s health over time. I don’t remember seeing a huge improvement in my skin over the first month or two that I used this, but it certainly looks great on.
I would imagine that most people who are ok with a light coverage foundation would find this to be an easy base to wear. I personally have a combination skin type, with an oilier nose but drier cheeks, and this works just fine on both of these areas of my face. Over the past summer I started wearing a primer (this one) to help control the oil a little better throughout the day, and I do always set this with a powder as well, and this mostly just helps me reduce or completely eliminate the need for midday touch ups. As the name suggests, this does have a relatively luminous finish, so oilier skin types may find that this creates a bit too much shine.
One of the reasons I find this to be such an easy product to wear day-to-day is that it can be applied quickly and it blends effortlessly. Because coverage isn’t all that buildable (it will always be pretty light), I really don’t find that I have to use very much product. Just a pea-sized amount. For a long time I used a flat foundation brush to apply this and did a little extra blending around the edges of my face with a sponge, but more recently I’ve been lazier and just straight up apply it with my fingers. Works fine either way.
I use the shade Finland, the lightest shade in the range, and it’s a flexible enough shade to work for me year-round. I have no need to use a darker shade in summer and a lighter shade in winter. It has a nice neutral, maybe slightly yellow color to it that I think does a nice job covering up some redness. It’s also a great year-round product because of its SPF 30. I’m not convinced I use enough of the product to get the full SPF30, since receiving the stated SPF usually requires using a very generous amount of product, but it’s high enough that I generally don’t worry about applying a separate sun protection product on the days I wear this (I live in Seattle where full-sun days are on the rare side and SPF 15 seems to work for me just fine).
I also find that this can be a nice product to mix into other drier or higher coverage foundation. I have a couple of cheaper foundations on hand that I sometimes mix the tinted moisturizer into: L’Oreal True Match (N2), which can emphasize drier skin and thus benefits from the dewier and more hydrating aspects of the tinted moisturizer, and Revlon Colorstay (180 Sand Beige), which is now a bit too dark for me but offers more coverage than the NARS alone provides.
Above, I’m also wearing: L’Oreal True Match crayon concealer in N1-2-3, L’Oreal Translucide translucent powder, NARS blush in deep throat, NARS blush in albatross, Make Up For Ever Aqua Brow in 10 light blonde, Prestige Total Intensity eyeliner in daring green (review here), Rimmel ScandalEyes Show Off mascara in black (review here), and Korres Cherry Oil lipgloss in 33 Natural.
Update: If you’re interested in seeing what this tinted moisturizer looks like when it’s topped with the NARS Translucent Crystal loose setting powder, take a look at here.
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