There are no deliveries that garner as much excitement in the Beauticate office as those that come in the matte black bag with white writing. Even the enclosed note is chic: “Avec les compliments de Chanel” declares a neat sans serif font on the small crisp white comp card accompanying each launch.
Often there’s a viewing ritual, as I unwrap the items that are passed among the team amid various “oohs” and “ahhhs”. In the case of Les Beiges Eau De Teint, however, it was short-lived. As soon as I spied that beige box I called shotgun – and spirited it away before anyone could lay their claim.
You see, I’d been waiting for this one. I have been a Les Beiges fan for years – first falling hard for the Healthy Glow Sheer Powder (which I use in place of a bronzer) and then getting hooked on the Gel Touch Foundation cushion compact. Upon hearing Les Beiges was bringing out a new complexion product that was to be a game changer and first to market, I was – naturally – all ears. And so, the next morning, I tried it out…
The packaging is breathtaking – as expected. The transparent bottle holds a see-through liquid, and suspended within this ‘water’ are tiny sand-like pigments of colour. They burst on contact with skin and are swept over the face with the provided kabuki brush, creating a flattering wash of colour, and blurring imperfections while still allowing the skin’s texture to shine through.
The thing that struck me first was how lightweight and easy to wear it was. Chanel are calling the effect a ‘water-fresh tint’ and it does feel incredibly lightweight and hydrating – no doubt due to its 75% water composition. It also contains tamarind seed extract for added quenching. True to word, I noticed that at lunchtime I didn’t reach for my face mist. My skin still felt comfortable in the afternoon even though the heating was on.
Since I usually go for a bit more coverage I wore it that day with a healthy dose of concealer under the eyes and on my eyelids. I looked carefully at my skin throughout the day and actually found I didn’t mind seeing a few freckles and pores. It was actually refreshing to do my makeup in the morning and not feel airbrushed. In this age of baking and contouring, it made me wonder. Why are we so intent on covering our skin? Has makeup become a protective shield or a punitive barrier?
Sometimes it just takes a break in habit to force yourself to ask the hard questions. And answer them with new behaviours. I also love the neroli fragrance, which adds to that feeling of oceanic-meets-spring day freshness. I find I’m reaching for the Eau De Teint when I want to feel fresh, real and simple; when I wear my favourite Re/Done jeans with a fresh white linen shirt and I want my skin to look just like really good skin. I wear it with brushed up boy brows, a slick of mascara, a nude lip and not much else. I’m loving having that ‘clean skin’ option in my foundation wardrobe. It’s a wardrobe that, admittedly, is getting a little unwieldy. Having adjusted my complexion expectations now though, I think the first to get turfed will be those matte, full coverage foundations. Somehow fresh skin just feels so right, right now.