|Above: The streamlined, luxe Serge Lutens packaging…I love this aesthetic.
|Above: The Teint Si Fin is made in Japan and offers .28 ounces of product; thankfully, a little goes a long way!
|Above: The relatively brief ingredients list of the Teint Si Fin…my sensitive skin hasn’t experienced an ounce of irritation from this particular grouping of ingredients. Also, although the ingredients include fragrance, I cannot detect a scent at all.
|Above: The Serge Lutens Teint Si Fin compact in all its ebony glory.
|Above: Even though the compact comes labeled and intact with a particular shade of powder, you can buy the refills in any shade, thereby making the compact quite utilitarian.
|Above: My pristine pan of Teint Si Fin in O40 before sullying it with a brush or sponge ; ) It looks quite dark in the pan, but applies much lighter and thankfully doesn’t oxidize!
Because there was so little by way of details and information (much less, swatches!) regarding this product, I spent an inordinate amount of time deciding on which shade to order. After a couple of phone calls with the Serge Lutens specialist at Barney’s (I even gave her my match in the Kevyn Aucoin SSE–#6–which she swatched in conjunction with the powders just to make sure), I came to the conclusion that O40 was likely the best match for my NC25 skin.
Texturally, this powder is exceedingly finely-milled, endlessly silky and somehow simultaneously harnesses both mattifying and glow-inducing powers. On its own as a powder foundation, I found that the coverage to be minimal; it is difficult for me to call this an official “foundation powder.” However, if you have very good skin to begin with, then I suppose a great primer and thorough application of this powder might be all one needs for a polished visage. I find that this works amazingly well over any foundation that I choose for the day, and I fully acknowledge that this rotation can be vast!
Applied with a foundation brush (in this case, my trusty Hourglass Retractable Foundation Brush), it provides a lovely finishing effect and additional coverage…a few swirls are sufficient as a little of this goes a remarkably long way. It simply melts into the skin, removing excess shine and adding extra coverage, all the while without imparting a perceivable powdery finish. I notice that this does not oxidize as the day goes on and touchups with the sponge throughout the day are achieved without unsightly buildup.
|Above: Serge Lutens Teint Si Fin in O40 in direct sunlight.
|Above: Serge Lutens Teint Si Fin (top row L-R) in Blanc, BF20, B40, B60, D10 and (bottom row L-R) I20, I40, O40, O60, O20. It should be noted that the powders apply more lightly than they appear in the pan!
|Above: The Teint Si Fin in O40 is clearly darker than both the Hourglass Diffused Light and Makeup Forever Pro Finish Powder in #117 Warm Ivory (which is also more opaque, borderlining on chalky) but it is also more gossamer in texture! It truly melts into the skin.
|Above: Swatches of the Serge Lutens Teint Si Fin shade range in direct sunlight.
|Above: Swatches of the Serge Lutens Teint Si Fin shade range in indoor car lighting.
|Above: In direct sunlight…it creates a matte glow rather than a powdery finish (not a great expression, but a useful lighting context nonetheless!). I am wearing this over Revlon Colorstay Whipped Foundation in #200.
|Above: In a sunlit window. I am wearing this over Face Atelier Ultra Foundation in #2 Ivory.
|Above: Outdoors in shade. I am wearing this over Kanebo Sensai Cellular Performance Foundation in Natural Beige (to be reviewed soon).
|Above: In a sunny car ; ) I am wearing this over Hourglass Immaculate Foundation in Golden.
Bottom Line: The Serge Lutens line is simply exquisite. Clean, luxurious and rather esoteric, there is something alluring about a limited product range that requires serious saving (in my case) or a trust fund (in the case of the extremely wealthy, perhaps) to comfortably procure its wares. In terms of its glowing matte finish and medium coverage, the Teint Si Fin is a powder to rival all powders. While I am extremely happy to own this, I wholeheartedly believe that one could also find joy and contentment in a powder with a less exorbitant price tag. That being said, I don’t believe this powder is without arguable merit; from the sleek compact to the buildable coverage that somehow avoids looking cakey, even after multiple applications, I can rationalize this purchase like I would a high-end skincare item because I use it almost daily. It is a fixture in my purse, and the refills will cost half of what I paid for the entire unit initially.
In turn, I recommend it along with a prudent sentiment…if it is within your reach financially, then it is a lovely acquisition that features both form and function. If its cost is not reasonable within the constraints of your budget, then there are a myriad of powders that can deliver commensurate results…Sulwhasoo Brightening and Hourglass Ambient Lightening Powder to name a few!
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