This was one of my more fortuitous product for review offerings - I've been meaning to buy this for ages! I'd been meaning to try it for a long time, based on positive experiences from @lisaintokyo among others. And having tried it on my hand a few times in Priceline, it looked wonderfully sheer. So when the opportunity arose to review this product I jumped on it like a hungry seagull. Why YES, Maybelline, I will try out your big graffiti-marker-looking foundation!
So Maybelline's most recent foundation offering (hereafter MIARETM) has an absolutely wonderful gimmick - a big fuzzy head that distributes foundation in big paint strokes on your face. I was momentarily crestfallen when I unwrapped this one - the shade is Nude, which is the second palest, and as far as I was concerned, too dark for me. I was worried, but after I swatched it on my hand and rubbed it in a bit, it looked like it might be okay. I swatched it in one stroke on the left and a rubbed in patch on the right:
Not as dark as immediately thought, but darker than I would assume would match me. This will be interesting.
There is one thing that needs to be pointed out with the application of this foundation - it dried fast. Really fast. As in, there is no way you could blend it with another tone or moisturizer or anything. As soon as it touches your face you've got about five seconds to blend before it sets. But that said, hoo boy, once it sets it's fantastic. This is the first foundation I've encountered where I haven't needed to powder over the top. It dried very matte and even. Also the roll-up texta application is a lot of fun. I wonder about the hygiene aspect of rubbing this fuzzy sponge thing over your face every day? Perhaps a replaceable fuzzy cap would have been a good idea.
Yes, I do think the tone is noticeably darker, but it hasn't occurred to me at all in the mornings I've worn this to work. But it is nighttime when I took these pictures, i.e. when I'm at my most bloodless. The applicators very effective and pleasant to use, and the above face took about 30 seconds. And I can barely feel it on my face, and rubbing my fingers over my face doesn't budge the makeup. This one is not a mover. Likewise when I went to run my hand under the tap to get the handswatch off, it would not move without makeup remover. This one will not turn you into the Wicked Witch of the West if you get caught in the rain.
I'm going to point something out to girls who may consider getting this one: There IS a little raised plasticy arrow on the red plastic which shows you which way to twist it to distribute product onto the sponge. I had no idea about this and frustrated myself needlessly trying to get product out and having no idea that it needed to be rotated left. Don't be like me. Look for that little subtle arrow. Your morning will be far less stressful.
I wonder if it could be drying for non-oily girls, since it dries so fast and feels like powder once its dried. But for me with my oily-as-sin face, it was great. I didn't apply moisturiser or anything underneath, just washed my face and loaded it on. And since it doesn't need powder I could apply it through the day.
My only critique isn't really a critique - when I buy this I think I'll go the shade lighter. What looked fine when I was all flushed and rosy cheeked from the shower starts to look a bit too orange on me towards the end of the day. But I do get paler as the day rolls on. I'm usually Cullen-grade by the time I fall through the front door of my house. So it might just be me.
All in all this is great lazy-girl foundation. Quick and easy and smooth and a good deal of fun to apply (this is very important for me...). I do think it's worth a try - the testers in Priceline won me over, so do have a play and see what you think. It's not a hardcore coverage foundation, more of a sheer equalizer to gloss over the bad bits and leave alone the good bits. But I do like, yes yes.