Physicians Formula recently released a new serum foundation that claims to provide weightless coverage while making you look 10 years younger, which I thought sounded fun. The full name of the product is quite a mouthful: Physicians Formula Youthful Wear Cosmeceutical Youth-Boosting Spotless Foundation SPF 15.
This is a very fluid formula that comes in a glass bottle with a dropper in the top. The bottle of course has to have spots on it since they use the word “spotless” in the title, because Physicians Formula is always excruciatingly literal with their designs, but I’ll forgive them this time. I think the bottle is cute enough, easy to store, and not too bulky. The glass has some weight to it so I get the feeling that it’d survive a bit of travel, but obviously there are some inherent risks when it comes to glass packaging.
The bottle does come with a little brush, but if I’m being honest I have to admit that I threw it out before I ever tried using it. It sat on my counter for a few days before I just decided that it was too absurdly small to be of much use. It has angled synthetic bristles kind of like my Eco Tools Skin Perfecting Brush (photos and review), and so I figured I’d be better off using that one because it wouldn’t take me 8 years to make it around my whole face. I appreciate the effort, but I almost wish they hadn’t bothered because I know that little brush adds to the cost of the product.
The foundation claims to last for 12 hours, and is free of parabens and gluten. The back of the box says (in very small print) that brightening cosmeceutical ingredients help improve the appearance of dark spots, age spots, and sun spots instantly and over time, while SPF 15 helps prevent new spots from popping up. It’s a nice thing to hear, but spots really aren’t a big issue of mine so I’m not going to be the person who can really verify the effectiveness.
I have two main thoughts about this foundation: first, I really, really like it. Second, the fact that they only make it in three shades (light, medium, and medium beige) is infuriating. I bought the lightest of the options, and the moment I twisted the lid off when I got it home I could see that it was very obviously too dark for me (I’m usually a “light”, and go between a L’Oreal N2 and N3, so I’m not exactly the fairest of the fair).
I held onto the foundation for a few weeks until I started self tanning, which then made it much more workable, but even then I’d still generally mix it in with a lighter foundation instead of using it straight. My skin tone is pretty neutral and I feel that although this shade is too dark for me it also is a pretty neutral color, so it does work pretty well for me on that level. If you have cooler skin, you may find that this leans orange on you, though, When used straight on my hand, you can see that it looks extremely lightweight and provides a very skin-like demi-matte finish. I find that it doesn’t feel obvious, and makes my skin feel soft and perhaps a little velvety.
Now that I’m self tanning my L’Oreal True Match in N2 is too light for me, so it’s been my go-to foundation to blend with the Youthful Wear serum. Above, that’s the mixture I’m wearing. True Match also makes a good mixing buddy because like the Youthful Wear, it has a lightweight demi-matte finish. However, True Match isn’t the longest lasting foundation ever and could use some help in the oil-control department, and that’s something that the Youthful Wear serum really helps out with. I like True Match (see my review), but I feel like the addition of Youthful Wear only improves on it.
Above, I’m also wearing Buxom’s Full-On lipstick in Havana.
Here’s another combination that I’m enjoying: adding a bit of NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer in with the Youthful Wear serum. It helps lighten it a bit, but it also adds a beautiful luminosity. This is also a situation where Youthful Wear contributes longevity and oil-control, so that’s great. I can still get some of that gorgeous finish that NARS provides (see my review) while also winning some additional coverage and longer wear.
So, I’ve mentioned that the Youthful Wear serum does wear well throughout the day and helps control oil a bit, which I wasn’t entirely expecting from it when I first bought it. I also find that it looks very flattering on pores and fine lines, and really helps perfect the appearance of skin. The coverage is medium, I think, without feeling the least bit heavy on the skin. It definitely helps minimize the appearance of redness in my skin as well and dark circles under my eyes. I really, really like it.
It’s also effortless to apply. I normally use a brush (any of my normal foundation brushes work with this one) just because I like to, but this also works perfectly fine with fingers. I don’t need a lot in order to spread over a large area of skin, but at the same time it doesn’t look heavy if I use a bit too much. It’s extremely forgiving in this way. Yet, with all that spreadability it’s still never creamy or greasy. I don’t find powdering it to be absolutely necessary, though I often do (either out of habit or because I’ve blended it with a foundation that’s best powdered).
I still can’t believe they only make three shades, though. It seems crazy to limit a foundation that much. I’d understand it more if it were more sheer, and I suppose to some degree the lightweight texture makes it more flexible, but it still gives some real coverage. Looking through the online reviews on the Physicians Formula website, that’s obviously the biggest complaint that people have so I wonder if it’d be possible to convince the company to expand the options. I don’t know.
The Youthful Wear serum is regularly priced at $14.95 but you can always look out for sales and coupons, so it can definitely be much more affordable. I bought it at Ulta with a store coupon on top of a Physicians Formula coupon and ended up saving about 40%. You get a full ounce in the bottle, which will last a good long while, and the dropper makes it easy to use. I think it’s a great product if you can find a suitable shade match. You can find it at Physicians Formula, Ulta, and any drugstore that offers Physicians Formula products.
Have you tried it? Are you a fan?