A few years back, Laura Mercier introduced her revolutionary tinted moisturizer (available as well at most department stores). It was a great concept for me, since I don't need much coverage, it moisturizes (which foundation doesn't necessarily do), plus it has SPF. Also, there is an oil-free version, which I need so I don't breakout.
Bless the little soldiers of industry, who promptly began knocking off Laura's creation, which is still one of the most highly rated tinted moisturizers, so check it out. But it turns out the shade that I purchased, Nude, does not match my current skin tone (skin can change hues over the years). The lighter shade, Porcelain, is too pale for me.
I prefer the companies that claim all sorts of "healthy" ingredients, so I marched off to Sephora to try the Tarte Smooth Operator SPF 20. Here's the rub.
I have yet to meet a "beauty consultant" that has actually helped me. Like a guileless babe, I allowed myself to be led to the display, where she confidently matched me with Agent 06. "You have yellow undertones," she purred. The lighting in Sephora could be better, so I took her word for it and happily trotted off for home.
Where in the front hall mirror I looked as though I had developed jaundice. My face was a buttercup yellow. Horrified, I sneaked back into the beauty emporium where I refused any assistance, and exchanged it for the Agent 02, which, to be honest, is a little too light, but it is for beige undertones.
I had found on Vitacost a very good, while very liquidy, tinted moisturizer by a company called - seriously - Kiss My Face. The shade known as Beach blends into my skin perfectly. A couple of cons: the SPF is very low, only 8, and due to the thinness of the liquid, it doesn't provide a lot of moisture or coverage. But it is still indispensable with my current system, and it is non-comedogenic (doesn't clog pores).
Since the Tarte Smooth Operator is a little too light and also a little thick, I mix it with the Kiss My Face (tinted moisturizers should be applied with the fingers to warm it up, rather than with a sponge or brush) to give the shade I am looking for as well as the consistency. In the summer months, when my skin doesn't need much moisture, I use the Kiss My Face only, then buff a mineral SPF on top (I'll get into mineral makeup in another post).
While I was typing this up, I went to look up my Kiss My Face Tinted Moisturizer on Vitacost.com. It was labeled as "manufacturer out of stock." I frantically emailed the company and they soothingly said they'll be back in stock by mid-April.