I tried quite a few foundations in 2014, always looking for that mystical unicorn that would work well for my combination-dry skin and match my neutral-cool, super-pale neck and chest. Chantecaille Just Skin Tinted Moisturizer ended up putting the nail in that coffin: it was the tinted moisturizer to end all tinted moisturizers, but it still wasn't pale enough to match me. I might've wept. I might've screamed. I definitely decided I was tired of falling in love with things that were two shades too dark for me.
It's probably for the best, considering this base's specs. It costs a whopping $67 for 1.7 ounce of tinted moisturizer. Yes, that's more than the usual 1 ounce, and the squeeze tube with a nozzle makes it nigh on impossible to dispense too much. But you'll still need a goodly glob of the stuff to cover your face and neck. Also, the SPF rating is a measly "15." Some people may be okay with that, but I really prefer tinted moisturizers in the SPF30 range; 15 seems like a throwaway to me.
The actual product, though, is just lovely. It has an incredibly smooth, creamy texture, and it blends easily with fingers or a brush. You can see that it provides light coverage, evening out my redness and discoloration without looking fake. It really does look like it's "just skin." I did have to powder my oily nose halfway through the day, but the product didn't get pool in my pores or "break down"; it just got a smidge shiny.
There is a faint and vaguely floral smell to this product, but I didn't notice it once it was applied to my face.
Here's a macro shot of the product after it's been on my skin for 15 minutes. Now, granted, I have good skin to begin with. But do you see how natural it looks on my face, even this close up? There are very few products I've tried that have managed that feat. This is makeup that perfects without looking like makeup.
Unfortunately, Alabaster is not the right shade for me at all. While it looks like a neutral N10-ish cream when I dispense it from the tube, it quickly darkens to a quite pink NW15 shade on my face. Proof:
I posted this image on Makeup Alley and was told that I was being entirely too dramatic, that nobody would notice the difference between my face and neck when I wore this otherwise gorgeous tinted moisturizer. Rest assured, it was more noticeable in person. I only felt comfortable wearing it in public when my hair was down (camouflaging most of my neck), or when I was wearing something with a relatively high collar. Beyond that, I'm a firm believer in everybody having a foundation that matches them perfectly; I don't see why I should have to settle for less than that just because I have an unusual skintone.
Still...so pretty. So sad.
Even though it didn't work for me, I won't hesitate to recommend Chantecaille Just Skin to people with big budgets. It's got fantastic coverage for such a light, natural-looking product, and it will flatter most people with dry, combination, and normal skin types. Trust and believe that if Chantecaille ever comes out with a paler shade than Alabaster, I'll be all over it like white on rice.
RATING: 5 out of 5
Chantecaille Just Skin is available at the Chantecaille website.