L'Oreal Infallible 24hr-Matte Foundation Review
This is the first L'Oréal foundation I've ever tried. Normally I stick to my trusted Revlon Colourstay in Sand Beige (which is still the best colour match I’ve ever found for my skin). But when I was mulling around Boots on my break a few weeks ago, I was seduced by a smiling sales girl with promises of a 2 for £12 offer on anything L'Oréal and a free lipstick or nail varnish to sweeten the deal. I was two weeks from payday with about £20 left to last… but who could resist that kind of offering?
The land of YouTube had already taught me about L'Oréal foundations. Normally those who use the brand will go straight for the True Match foundation, but medium coverage, dewy foundations have never been for me. I mean, come on, I have spots to cover people!
So I went instead to the lovely selection of Infallible Foundations, which come in two different finishes: 24 hour-matte and "stay fresh," which I'm assuming is the dewy equivalent. As I'm a fountain of oil to begin with, I grabbed the 24hr-matte in the shade Vanilla, along with a True Match Touche Magique concealer and a free Colour Riche lipstick in Scarlet Creme, and went happily on my way.
Work wasn't the best place to try it out properly and I doubt they would have been very happy about me taking an hour out to remove my face and put it all back on again. Besides, my knock-off beauty blender was at home so I decided to wait. However I did notice in the daylight (well, the light of January in Northern England) that the swatch of the foundation on the back of my hand had dried down a little… pink. Not fuchsia pink but the pinky undertone that comes with pale foundations, it seemed strong in this one.
My heart sank, although I'm far from having the golden undertones of my dreams, I'm not 'that' pink. I prefer the ever so slightly yellowish tone of my beloved colourstay, even a slightly cool tone would do, but this? This was salmon coloured (supermarket salmon that is, not the red Alaskan type).
Nonetheless I decided to give it a real go, perhaps my setting powder would tone out some of the pink, maybe my arm, which is more tanned than my face (if you can call my skin tanned in any sense of the word), was just making it show up pinker than it really was. Maybe it was just a trick of the light! I hoped…
Back home, it was time to try it out properly. I prepped my skin with the usual stuff, cleanser, moisturiser, primer (silicone based as Infallible contains dimethicone) and got my damp beauty sponge. Just a side note, I don't use a genuine beauty blender, it's the same colour, shape and size as the real techniques beauty sponge but I bought it cheap from Ebay, almost definitely fake but it works the same and saves a bit of money.
I squirted some of the foundation on the back of my hand and got my sponge stuck in. Starting with my cheeks I started to blend up towards my nose and forehead and chin… you get the picture. Surprisingly, it actually blended in quite well, maybe a little dark but that's likely my fault for not buying the very lightest shade; Porcelain. The pink tinge certainly showed up, it wasn't as bad as I feared but I would have much preferred something more neutral.
It dried fairly quickly but allowed enough time to avoid clumpy foundation patches. If you don't use powder to set your face, then this would be a great option as it doesn't stay wet or tacky at all. Those of you with very dry skin or skin conditions which cause dry or flaky patches on the face may want to stay clear as I definitely noticed it clinging to dry skin around a healing spot on my cheek. Nothing too terrible though and certainly nothing that wouldn't happen with powder anyway. I was able to blend my concealer in over the top with ease and since then I've tried it with both liquid and cream concealers (the kind in the little jars), both blend in perfectly.
The finish was fantastic, perfectly matte with a smooth texture. Over the uneven texture where I tend to break out the foundation helped to skim it out, probably because of the silicones in the formula. I was really impressed by the end result especially as I tend to find other foundations get a little cakey around the sides of my nose and up in the corner of my eyes. There was none of that with Infallible.
The coverage was a little disappointing. It's definitely on the side of full coverage so credit for that, but I could still see spots through the foundation. Even with green colour corrector and concealer I could still see where my skin was uneven. From a one metre distance it looked fine so unless you get up close and personal with everyone you meet then the coverage is okay, but close up it's definitely not 100%. Saying that, not many foundations do cover the skin to the degree I want them too.
The bottle boasts 24 hour wear, something I always tend to doubt. While I can imagine the foundation lasting that long, the real test is whether it still looks good after that length of time. Unfortunately, that's not something I'm about to trial out since I don't fancy sleeping in my makeup. It might be useful for overnight flights or impromptu nights out that stretch into the morning but for me, that kind of situation is fee and far between. I can say that it lasts a full day at work and into the evening, it also lasts a day out on the weekend, even if kids are involved.
It wears pretty well; some foundations can leave patches on me after a few hours as I have a horrible habit of touching my face. Constantly. But Infallible can hold its own here, admittedly behind a layer of setting powder but it's still impressive. On the bottle it claims to be waterproof. It's not. They can claim that it's waterproof because it contains dimethicone, a silicone with waterproofing properties. However I found that the foundation easily left patches around my eyes and nose as they ran in the cold weather. One day I spent my whole morning at work with a huge bare skin patch under my eye. This foundation is definitely not waterproof.
The impact on the skin wasn't as bad as it might have been. While some full coverage foundations can cause breakouts, this one proved pretty reliable. In the interests of full disclosure, I did get a couple of smaller spots while using this, most were on the surface and not too much of a problem. One was deeper and I still haven't been able to pop it. Yet there's no guarantee that these were caused by the foundation as I break out pretty much constantly anyway; could have been hormones, primer, bacteria on my sponges or brushes… anything. If you are prone to spots, pimples, acne or general breakouts then you might want to test this out carefully. If not, then there's little danger of this foundation harming your skin.
If you have mature skin, you may want to be careful and apply in a thin layer. I have a few fine lines on my forehead and under my eyes where the foundation did settle even with the primer, on the other hand I've never found a foundation or even a BB cream that didn't do that. It's worth trying out if you have redness or other imperfections to cover, but if lines and wrinkles are your main concern then you might be better off with a thinner and more flexible formula.
Drier skin would also be better off with a less drying formula; I imagine anyone with dry skin already knows how matte foundations can work on their skin so I won't spend too much time here. Maybe try the Infallible Stay Fresh formula if your skin tends to fall on the dry side.
The packaging isn't the greatest; it's in a plastic bottle which you squeeze to get the foundation out, a little like a moisturiser bottle. It's clear so you get an idea of the colour but keep in mind it does dry darker! The back has a handy little guide indicating the finish, coverage and texture (something I wish would spread to all foundations) and the front boasts the name of the foundation and the colour. All in all it's a little disappointing especially as the stay fresh formula comes in a lovely glass bottle with a pump to avoid all the foundation drying up and clumping around the lid (or spout maybe?). If you want a pretty display bottle, you'd be better buying something else, but foundations aren't usually great display pieces anyway.
It's great value for money, at £7.99 for 35ml it's a little bigger than most foundations and the price is about right for a 'drugstore' offering. It's not going to break the bank and the bottle will last quite a while, if you only use a small amount it will last even longer. I use quite a considerable quantity and in the two weeks I've been using this I've barely noticed it going down.
All in all it's a pretty good foundation. The coverage is decent although not perfect, the texture and finish is lovely, the price point is ideal, it doesn't clog up badly around the eyes and nose and it's perfectly matte. It's probably not great for dry or mature skin or anyone with sensitive skin prone to breakouts. Likewise it's not going to be any use at all for those with darker skin (except maybe as a contour highlighter) as the colour range is very limited and geared towards lighter skin tones. It's also pink, even some of the other shades I've swatched come out pink so be careful if you have a warmer skin tone as it may clash with your natural skin and be difficult to blend out the edges. But for the price, and if you're cool toned, normal to oily and light but not too pale then this might just be the one for you.