Guerlain makes some of my favourite foundations… they don’t boast an extensive range, but I’ve lived on and loved most of their formula. There is a smoothness and refinement that is not commonly found in other makeup brands. It has been many years since Guerlain last introduced a liquid foundation that is outside of their regular product lines so I was really excited to check out the new Guerlain L’Essentiel Foundation!
The most striking aspect of this new foundation is its unique shape. Designed by Mathieu Lehanneur, the L’Essentiel bottle is composed of 2 spheres, the glass flacon and gilded top symbolize the perfect balance between 2 seemingly contradictory elements, makeup and skincare. I was initially wary that such a bottle may not be too practical, but it turned out to be well balanced both on the vanity as well as in the hands.
Guerlain L’Essentiel is a foundation unlike any other as it not only gives the illusion of naturally perfect skin, it is actually made from 97% naturally-derived skin-loving ingredients that aim to protect and improve the quality of your skin with continued use. Beauty-boosting ingredients such as white cocoa bean extract, and probiotic derivatives and prebiotics help to maintain skin’s natural balance, strengthen the cutaneous barrier, and boost hydration. Tara and red algae gums allow the skin to breathe and protect it from the aging effects of pollution.
These beneficial effects are made all the more important since L’Essentiel has an impressive 16-hour wear time. The texture is light and smooth, on par with the best Guerlain has ever offered. It is easy to apply and blend, and provides light-medium slightly buildable coverage. As you can see from the half-faced comparison shot below, L’Essentiel brightens and evens out my skin tone whilst maintaining allow my natural skin to show through. It gives my skin a luminous glow which looks more healthy than oily, far less shiny than this foundation that I recently reviewed. I’m using the shade 02N which is slightly lighter than my natural skin tone and looks much pinker than I like, 02W should be a better match.
One of the common complaints I’ve heard about Guerlain foundations in the past was the lack of shades, but this time L’Essentiel is being released with a whopping 30 shades! There are C- cool/ N- neutral/ W- warm undertones, as well as a range of intensities from 00 to 06.
I don’t wear normally my foundations for 16 hours, but a minimum of 12 hours on a daily basis in a hot and humid climate. Many brands claim long-lasting wear for their foundations, so I am usually sceptical and was pleasantly surprised to find Guerlain L’Essentiel actually survives my combination skin very well! At the end of the day my makeup is still perfectly intact, perhaps a slight sheen may have escaped on my t-zone but nothing a simple blot can’t fix. There is no fading, creasing nor breaking down of the foundation.