16 October 2010

Benefit Hello Flawless - Hello Flaws

A demonstration of the effects of different ki...Image via Wikipedia
Recently in a moment of madness I ordered hello flawless compact foundation from Benefit Cosmetics. What drove me to do it? Well, so many sites don't deliver to Portugal and this one did, plus there seemed to be some good reviews for this foundation. It was described as having customizable coverage and looked great online. The website recommended the lightest shade for me 'me, vain?: neutral champagne'. So, I placed my order and waited. The delivery was pretty fast and I was excited to try this as soon as it arrived. Now, the lighting in my bathroom is not the best, it's your usual artificial light affair, but it usually serves its purpose. I applied as instructed, using the sponge for a little more coverage and then the brush to apply in areas that didn't need so much. On leaving the house I thought I looked a little pale, but perhaps it was my imagination, so I thought. I got to work, looked in the mirror and OMG, I looked like Casper the friendly ghost's paler not so dead friend.

I lived with this for a day or two, what can I say, but I really wanted to like this product and was trying to convince myself it wasn't the foundation. However, in the end I gave up the ghost, so to speak (sorry about that). I was not prepared to admit defeat yet and so back to the Benefit site I went and ordered the next colour in the range 'Shades: never settle: fair petal'. Again, I waited and then experimented, the colour was so much better, but there was still something amiss. My skin felt strange! 

Now, I am usually quite assertive with cosmetics and if I don't like it that's it, but I was going through a strange phase at that point having been let down by a few products in a row and didn't want to add another to the list. However, after giving hello flawless a 2 week run, my skin started to get all dry and flaky. It also itched slightly, so there was obviously something in the foundation that irritated my sensitive skin. That was the final straw. 

Please, don't get me wrong, this might be fantastic for some people and I believe Benefit has an excellent returns policy, even accepting return on products that have been slightly used. However, I was a little slow in getting back to them and  I ended up giving both foundations to my Mum, she seems to like them, but she has got more robust skin than me. She's not a cosmetics lover and so, loves the 1 step approach, which this foundation has. She doesn't need primer or powder and it looks good on her, further evidence that what doesn't work for one person can be just the ticket for another. 

I guess the moral of the story really is try before you buy. Besides the chances of the colour not looking good, it's also advisable to test a product before using it on the face. I had a slight reaction, but some people get much more severe reactions than I do.

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