Whether you like make-up or not, I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed (or tried not to notice) all the buzz and hype around Rihanna’s new make-up line, Fenty Beauty. Rihanna’s range has been whipping everyone into a frenzy – the media, influencers, consumers – pretty much everyone has something to say and most of it is great.
I first heard about it on Instagram and though it was big news, I didn’t think the brand would land in the UK anytime soon. I wasn’t curious enough to order it all the way from Sephora in the US so I didn’t think much about it until I heard it would be exclusively available at Harvey Nichols! That was a game-changer and now I really, really, really wanted to be a part of all the excitement.
Though I was keen, I waited for the initial launch excitement to die down before I started to check the range out- it’s so disappointing to set your heart on a perfect shade and then see the dreaded ‘out of stock’ sign. This was especially true given that I was most looking forward to trying the Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longer Foundation which is being hailed as one of the most inclusive foundation shade ranges. I’d read some good reviews and also noticed that most women recommended getting colour matched in store.
I was working in London a few weeks ago and decided to go to Harvey Nichols after work to get shade matched. I’m always a little dubious about trusting a store assistant to recommend the right shade because my skin is quite pigmented in certain areas and I don’t necessarily want my foundation to match those bits. I always match to the ‘good’ areas and find that as long as the undertone is correct, I can pinpoint a shade pretty accurately from online or hand swatches. Nevertheless, I made my way to Harvey Nichols – only to be met with a line that started outside the store and went around the side of the building! There was no way I was going to queue for 45 minutes in the rain – sorry Ri-Ri!
So when I got home, I decided to try and find my shade from the swatches on the website. I have to say though, this wasn’t so easy to do with Fenty beauty, because while the shades are quite nicely organised and swatches, the undertones are pretty hard to nail in the studio photos (reds vs. warms especially). After much back and forth and trying to Google swatches on brown skin, I settled on shade 330. There really aren’t enough people swatching the Tan range side by side on brown skin and while I could see one or two beside each other, I wish I could have seen the entire Tan range swatched on brown skin in natural daylight!
I only bought a couple of items from the Fenty Beauty range but I paid for everything with my own money and you’re getting my honest thoughts about each piece.
I had read enough about the foundation to know that everyone thought it was marvellous so I had very high expectations going in. Firstly, I did pick the right shade – the foundation tends to oxidise (or set, depending on what you read) and turn a little darker when it sets so the shade wasn’t an issue for me. I might try a slightly darker shade when this one runs out but a foundation that’s even slightly too dark makes my skin look lifeless.
The first thing I noticed was that the foundation dried quickly – way too quickly! I’m talking while I was still blending it! I like to apply my foundation loosely with a brush and then dab with a Beauty Blender until it’s seamless. With the Pro Filt’r Foundation though, I found that midway though the process I had streaks and patchy bits where the foundation had already started to set and it was extremely hard to blend out.
I did eventually manage to finish blending it and the overall look I achieved was actually pretty good. The foundation looked matte but not caked on, it was medium-full coverage and I only needed one layer to cover up any pigmentation. I also noticed that I didn’t really need concealer – especially under the eyes – so that was definitely a plus. I set it with Kat Von D’s Lock It Setting Powder (one of my favourites, along with Laura Mercier’s Universal setting powder) and I was ready to go.
Through the day I noticed that the foundation got progressively drier on my face and started to gather near the corners of my nose. I was able to fix it relatively easily with a micro Beauty Blender I keep in my purse but still – not ideal in an office environment!
I also picked up the Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter Duo in the shades ‘Girl Next Door’ and ‘Chick Phreak’. Similar to the Pro Filt’r foundation range, the highlighter duos range from light to deep and I think I the duo I bought sits in the ‘Tan’ range.
I have to say, the highlighters are lovely. The pigment is very, very finely milled so it doesn’t stick to the pores on your face and leave you with loads of unwanted texture (why highlighters? why must you be so cruel?). It’s also buildable and blends out very easily, leaving my cheeks with a nice glow rather than shiny racing stripes, making it a great buy for everyday use (especially work). Of course, it’s just as easy to dampen the brush for the wet-look when I’m feeling a little more glamourous.
They also come in a little octagonal white case (shiny – so it’s easy to clean) which is so, so chic and easy to travel with.
I would say that overall, I am a little underwhelmed by the foundation and would not recommend it for drier skins. My skin is fairly normal (sometimes dry depending on my water intake) and I use Farsali’s Rose Gold Elixir as a primer so it’s well hydrated before the foundation goes on but I haven’t been able to make the Pro Filt’r foundation work as well as I would like.
However, I really like the highlighter duo and the soft, gentle highlight each shade leaves on my skin. I especially love the shade ‘Chick Phreak’ which leaves the most gorgeous rose gold effect on the skin. I also definitely want to pick up the shade ‘Trophy Wife’ as the swatches I have seen online are stunning.
Have you bought anything from Fenty beauty and did you like it as much as everyone else? Leave me a comment.