September 12, 2008

Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation Review

It’s hard ignoring the sheer perfection that is Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation.

*sigh of pleasure*

After one simple dab on my face I knew this was love. It’s not all that hard deciding right away that the product is pure bliss.

First of all it’s probably one of the biggest foundation products I’ve ever owned. Although it’s a little over 1 oz in size it feels like a TON of product is inside and the heavy glass jar is a luxe and posh presentation that’s worthy of your vanity or dresser.

Although, at this point, I’m positive many of you are moaning and groaning about the fact that you have to dip your fingers inside to get the product out, fear NOT, they include a little spatula for those of us that are terribly scared of germs and bacteria and such.

You’re not going to be moaning for long once you discover how heavenly the foundation is in texture. It is a mousse like foundation that’s whipped creamy and glides onto the skin like a dream. It absorbs quickly leaving behind a velvet-like canvas that’s prepped and ready for makeup.

I swear this is love.

One of the things I did notice about the formula is it quite reminded of Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch. It has somewhat a similiar texture but absorbs more fully into the skin. The foundation also happens to have a very light, fresh scent that I really like. Some may be disturbed by a scented foundation but I thought it was lovely and added to the appeal of the product. The fact that the foundation is silicon like in texture allows it to smooth onto the skin in a nice, even glide covering up blemishes, problem skin, dull spots, and pores as it goes. I highly recommend this to my Asian readers that suffer from larger pores and are wanting to fill and cover them up. The product not only acts as a foundation but almost as if it is double tasking as a primer as well. I also happen to recommend this to older girls that may have the beginnings or the full effect of fine lines on their faces. This should smooth and offer good coverage for all these problems and more.

The coverage is medium but is quite buildable if you prefer. One of the most impressive things that I noticed about the foundation is it multitasks as a concealer. It’s such a moisturizing foundation that smoothing a tiny bit under your eyes creates a rather gorgeous finish. A few readers had recommended using Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch under my eyes prior to using concealer this happens to mimic that technique only this is like having Perfecting Touch mixed in with a concealer and ready to apply.

I did notice that a little goes a long way and if I use too much I end up looking heavily made up so do mind yourself when applying! Just a two or three dabs and smooth out for a nice even finish. The wear is considerably longer than other foundations I’ve used before with a wear of around six or seven hours prior to needing a touch up.

One minor rant about the product is the color selections. They are rather weird color shades that are difficult to grasp. Some are too beige and others appear too orange. I got the lightest shade available which was 00 Ivory Beige but it just has a bit too much beige in it however it is very suitable to my tone and worked very well. I just always have a little bit of a problem when it comes to selecting the proper shade with Clarins. This is why I highly recommend you go to your local counter to make your color choice. You can see, touch, swatch, and have them match up the perfect shade for you where as with an Internet purchase you’ll stumble through what looks best and suitable for your skin. 00 Ivory Beige quite reminds me of a BB Cream prior to application which leads me to believe it’ll be suitable for Asian skin tones since it has a considerable amount of beige in it to sooth and even out yellow skin tones.

At a price of $37 USD it’s a bit on the pricey side however since it’s like getting two products in one jar that actually works out to a deal and a steal. Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch retails for $28 USD anyway so for less than $10 more you can purchase Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation and it’s basically like getting both products. Although I actually do recommend picking up Clarins Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch as well as Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation if you have major problem skin and are looking to create a seriously flawless canvas. By prepping skin prior with Perfecting Touch and following up with Instant Smooth Foundation you should have virtually no signs of pores, blemishes, or anything else.

Clarins has a winner on it’s hands as far as the Muse is concerned. This is foundation greatness at it’s best and I can see this becoming a Fall and Winter staple product with holy grail stamped all over.

I really loved this one and recommend you go and try it out for yourself at your local counter. For further information and color selections visit Clarins website. While you’re visiting the site do check out the new Jazzy Colours Collection! I’ll be reviewing this shortly and hoping I can create an interesting face of the day look as the one the model is sporting! Doesn’t she look glam?

I’m slapping the Muse Approval on it for purchase!

The Muse loves Clarins Instant Smooth Foundation! Bravo!

Tried this?

Love it?

Want it?

Tell your Muse!

Clarins Instant Light Eye Perfecting Base Review


About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • acutelife

    Hi Musey how are you? Wow, this clarins will be my next target purchase!!thanks for the review…err..I havent had much time to go online lately so Im sure I’ve missed lots of your wonderful review..but have I also missed your BB cream review??

  • Helena

    Hey musey! Does this product give a matt finish/control sebum? I have combi-skin with slightly oil t-zone.

    Have you tried shu uemura's face architect foundation? I just bought the liquid and it looks a lot like love. <3
    I read your post about using purple primer to brighten the face, you should try shu's, they have purple liquid primer in a pump, it's more hygienic compared to a compact =D

  • jojoba

    OMG!!! I was just talking about how i want this product on Makeup Alley few hours ago!!! i swatched all the colours avaible here (5 only) and mine is 1.5. Now you really made me want to dash out to get a jar. I have a boutique near me!

    excellent review!

  • the Muse

    a acutelife!

    Missed you around here! I’m ok! How are you!?

    Not yet ๐Ÿ™‚ Bb’s are a coming soon ๐Ÿ™‚ hehe!


  • the Muse

    hi helena!

    It does give a matte finish but the slight silicon base makes me skeptical at how good it would be control oil and shine. So far so good for me but it also hasn’t been too hot here so I’m unsure yet if it’ll be good for my oily bits!

    I’m bringing you a review of the shu shortly ๐Ÿ™‚

    I definately want to try the primer from shu! I seen it and have been considering purchasing it ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the tip off! My lemmings are strong lol!

  • the Muse

    hello jojoba!

    LOL awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ I read minds lol!

    It’s really an interesting foundation..this one I’m really loving!

    If you get it do stop back and give me the word on how you are liking it ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks darlin’!

  • Haru

    Hey Izzy,

    I’ve been thinking about trying this out but am hesitant because of the silicons in it. When I tried out the Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch, it just felt like too much silicon and not enough of a moisturising base. Plus I’ve read that silicons can actually be problematic for acne-prone skin. I’m leaning towards gradually swearing off foundation altogether and just going with loose powder ‘cos it’s just been so difficult to find a HG foundation that works with my awful skin ๐Ÿ™

  • Pinky or Ping?

    hi muse!

    damn.. this foundation looks really good.. i will check it out one day… clarins always strike to me as a skincare more than cosmetics brand. haha

  • the Muse

    hey iris!

    This is somewhat silicony sadly. I didn’t like the feel of smooth perfecting touch either but I’m kinda trying to make myself love it ๐Ÿ˜›

    I go through foundation stage after foundation stage so I can understand the quest for HG foundation!

    My skin has been acting dull lately so I most definately need something to brighten, lighten, and wake it up. It could be dryness, could be old age, who knows ๐Ÿ˜› but the dullness is there!

    I can’t go just with powder though as powder very easily wears off on me within an hour sigh!

    Have you tried prestige skin loving minerals foundation? It’s cheap and got 5.0 rating on MUA. I was shocked and decided I must try this! I tried the blush and HATED it but I’m dead curious about the foundation!

    How are you btw?
    I’ve been swamped you must forgive me for being so out of touch lately!

    Love ya!

  • the Muse

    hi pinky!

    I’m totally with you there. Clarins always strikes me as a skincare brand however they have released some damn interesting items as of late ๐Ÿ™‚
    especially jazzy colors the fall collection!

  • elaina

    Okay, so I’ve tried Sephora, Nordstrom and Macy’s, and they all looked at me like I was crazy when I asked for it. Do I need to break down and buy it online?? But then I won’t be able to pick the perfect shade.. Aaaagghh!! Muse, please help a girl out! ๐Ÿ˜›

  • the Muse

    hi elaina!

    Well that stinks! I went to Nordies last week and they already had it in stock. There is nothing I hate more than stupid MA’s that don’t know what is going on!

    Don’t buy it online, I highly suggest heading in store love. Where are you located? I’ll see about getting information from your local Nordstrom and the Clarins stock!

    Sephora doesn’t yet have it I don’t believe and I’m unsure about Macys but I KNOW nordies has it out already!

    Hope this helps!


  • Anonymous

    I bought this at Macy’s. Its lovely but a little bit less matted than smashbox. I also like the scent but I wish it had been out longer so i could be more sure about it.

  • the Muse

    hi anomymous!

    it is considerably less matte compared to smashbox but it feels a bit better on for me..and doesn’t pill the way smashbox does ๐Ÿ™‚

    out longer? how do you mean?

  • Anonymous

    I have been using Clarins Perfect Touch Foundation for two weeks. It is the best foundation I’ve ever tried. I have combination skin with a lot of redness and it does a great job of concealing problems and stays on without feeling heavy. I love the texture.

  • the Muse

    hi anonymous!

    I’m glad you’re enjoying this! It sure is fabs! I like the texture kinda feels like I’m getting two products in one with it ๐Ÿ™‚

    Great stuff!

    Enjoy yours!

  • Ali

    Hello Muse,
    Thanks for your review on this Clarins product. After reading your high praises, I went and bought myself this foundation. However, after using it a couple of times, I broke out ferociously. (I did not change anything else in my daily face/skin regiment so I’m assuming it was the foundation). I have sensitive skin normally. Do you think that this was due to the foundation? Does it have properties in it that would cause such a reaction? What other foundation would you recommend for this skin “o” mine? Thanks!

    • the Muse

      hi ali.

      I’ve never had a problem with this and breaking out. If you haven’t changed anything in regards to skincare and daily face stuff it’s a safe assumption that the foundation made you break out. I’m not sure if it has properties or ingredients that would cause a break out, sadly, I’m not very good in regards to ingredients that cause break outs and such since my skin is so bloody bulletproof I never run into many problems. I’d try asking your Clarins MUA maybe she can tell you more details ๐Ÿ™‚

      I can’t really recommend a foundation for you as I don’t know what type of skin you have? You didn’t really say what type of skin you have in this comment so I can’t really say what would work best. I’ve always tried it’s best to try out a few at counter to see what would work best and also ask for small samples ๐Ÿ™‚

      Hope this helps!

      • Minttu

        Thanks for telling about instant smooth! I have been thinking about buying it for A long time. I have light skin with redness that I need to cover but look natural! Do you think it works with skin with some dry areas and does the base instant smooth make skin too matte and increase dryness? No I have Lauders spotlight,but it doesn`t even out skincolour..What are your other foundation favourites,compact powders? Another I really want is make up forever face&body or Macs studio tech or mineralize,hd foundation.I live in Finland and I can`t find them anywhere! And I live in a small town,limited products to choose.

        • the Muse

          hi minttu I’d head to your fav counter and try it out for size to see how it would on your skin hun.

          I don’t know where you can find these products in finland sadly as I’m in New York.

          I don’t use powder much but I tend to like Korean or Japanese loose powder or pressed if I do tote it around. You can search for my reviews on them in my categories button ๐Ÿ˜€ under Japanese Brands or Korean Brands.