6 Tried And Tested Tinted Moisturisers

Posted by in Makeup, Tried & Tested

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I’m just going to come right out and say it. I don’t like tinted moisturisers, I never have. I think it's because I used to have such bad skin as a teenager and was always desperately trying to cover up every single breakout and patch of redness. I’ve always gravitated towards full coverage foundations because of that and have never had any reason to even consider trying a tinted moisturiser. Not until recently when, by some miracle, my skin cleared up.

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Here’s a quick background of my skin's current condition. I have oily/combination skin; my t-zone is very oily all the time while my cheeks do tend to lack moisture and feel quite tight. I don’t break out to the extent that I used to but I do still have the odd one or two. I have typical ‘ginger skin’ with lots of freckles and red patches around my nose and cheeks. I also have dark circles that resemble those of someone who hasn’t slept for 3 days, even though I always get at least 7 hours a night.

The reason I wanted to give tinted moisturiser a go is partly because I love trying out new makeup, but mainly because I was curious to see if it could cover the long list of complaints I had while still giving me that natural, glowing complexion I’d always wanted to have.

Disclaimer: I wore all of the following tinted moisturisers for at least 9 hours without a primer or setting spray.

Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser

Price: £29.50

Shades: 12

Claims: contains SPF, keeps the skin hydrated all day, reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation and dark spots with continued use, oil free, fragrance free.

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I was a little concerned when I first squeezed it out as it looked quite orange, but the coverage was so sheer that once it was on my skin you could barely tell it was there. The finish was very pretty and dewy, however I did have to go back in with concealer in some areas to get a level of coverage I was comfortable with. The rest of my makeup applied really nicely over it and the result was a natural, dewy finish that I surprisingly liked.

Verdict: I wore this product for 10 hours and (even though I was very shiny by the end of the day) I was very pleased with how well it had lasted. My pores and smile lines hadn’t been accentuated and it hadn’t separated due to the oiliness of my skin.

Best for: Dry, combination, normal skin

Score: 9/10

Nars Velvet Matte Skin Tint

Price: £30

Shades: 12

Claims: SPF 30, oil-free, contains Vitamins C and E, Rose Fruit extract to eliminate shine and oil, instantly improves the appearance of skin and visibly reduces the appearance of pores.

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I could tell straight away that this product was going to offer more coverage as the texture was very thick and mousse-like. In my opinion it was actually closer to a medium coverage foundation rather than a tinted moisturiser as my freckles and redness had been covered with just one application. The scent was very strong and not particularly pleasant, so if you’re very sensitive to fragrance I don’t think you’d like this one. I was shocked at how quickly the product sunk into my pores and fine lines, and also how much it emphasised the uneven texture on my skin. The finish was so matte I only powdered under my eyes and around my nose. The rest of my makeup did apply very nicely over the top of it.

Verdict: By the end of the day my face looked like a hot mess. It had separated everywhere and had majorly sunk into my smiles lines and pores. I was so unimpressed and couldn’t wait to take it off! I think I’d try it again with a pore filling primer (Benefit Porefessional Primer), but I don’t have high expectations.

Best for: Normal skin

Score: 3/10

Hourglass Illusion Hyaluronic Skin Tint

Price: £51

Shades: 12

Claims: SPF 15, contains Hyaluronic Acid to help plump and tighten the skin, extremely hydrating, evens skin tone.

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Again, this is another product that I would classify as a light-medium coverage foundation as the texture was quite thick and it covered all my redness AND dark circles in one hit. It had a very strong sun cream smell to it that didn’t go away throughout the day. It applied a little streaky in places so I had to spend some time making sure it was completely blended. It dried down to a nice looking demi-matte and my other makeup products blended well over the top.

Verdict: I was very shiny in my t-zone by the end of the day but that is normal for me. Overall I was pleased with how fresh it still looked after 10 hours.

Best for: All skin types

Score: 7/10

Shiseido Syncho Skin Glow

Price: £36.50

Shades: 13

Claims: SPF 20, contains Argan Oil, Cranberry Seed Oil, and Yuzu Seed Extract to moisturise the skin, luminous long-lasting finish, reduces the appearance of visible lines and pores, a lightweight texture.

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Ok, so this product isn’t technically a tinted moisturiser, it’s a sheer coverage foundation. I decided to include it on this list as I felt it gave the same effect as a tinted moisturiser and it was a good product for people to try who are like me and aren’t sure whether tinted moisturiser is for them.

The product applied extremely easily and smoothly and didn’t emphasise my pores or texture. The first layer was quite sheer and didn’t cover much of my redness so I went back in with another layer which did the trick! The finish was very glowy and luminous and my other makeup products applied easily over the top.

Verdict: I was quite shiny by the end of the day however I was impressed at how well it had held up as I wore it for over 14 hours. It had separated on my chin and upper lip slightly but a powder touch up fixed that. It also hadn’t sunk into my smile lines like a lot of foundations do.

Best for: All skin types

Score: 7/10

REN Satin Perfection BB Cream

Price: £31

Shades: 1

Claims: SPF 15, protects against UV damage, gives a satin smooth matte finish, offers a toning, firming, anti-aging effect.

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As this BB cream only comes in one shade I was immediately skeptical as I don’t believe in ‘one size fits all’ makeup. It was way too dark for me and I had to spend a long time blending it down my neck to ensure it didn’t leave me with orange streaks. I also noticed that the liquid was quite thick for a BB cream, but it went on very smoothly and gave my skin a dewy finish. I wouldn’t say it covered any imperfections but it did even out my skin tone which I was happy about. I finished the look with concealer and powder and was actually quite pleased with the result.

Verdict: I was very shiny at the end of the day but it hadn’t separated or accentuated my lines or pores. I think this product would be perfect to take on holiday when you don’t want any coverage but need to even your skin tone.

Best for: Dry, normal skin

Score: 6/10 (score would be higher if it came in more shades)

Clarins HydraQuench Tinted Moisturiser

Price: £36.50

Shades: 5

Claims: SPF 15, contains Plant-Marine Cell Extracts to protect the skin against dehydration, minimizes the appearance of visible of aging, replenishes skin's moisture levels, gives a smoother even-toned & younger looking complexion.

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Even though I was using the lightest shade it was still way too dark for me. It was very thick and hard to spread so you wouldn’t be able to wear this without a moisturiser underneath. It didn’t really cover much and just made my face look darker. My concealer blended well over the top of it, however I had to use quite a lot of powder to set my face as it left a greasy residue on my skin.

Verdict: About an hour after setting my face I was greasy again so I wouldn’t recommend this to people with oily skin or people who like minimal touch-ups. It didn’t sink into my lines or pores but I probably wouldn’t wear this again as it was hard to apply and the colour was all wrong for me.

Best for: Dry, normal skin

Score: 4/10

Final Thoughts I was very surprised at how much I liked some of the products I'd tried and would definitely use the Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser, Hourglass Illusion Hyaluronic Skin Tint, and Shiseido Syncho Skin Glow again! I was also surprised at how much I didn't mind the lack of coverage and actually enjoyed embracing my natural side for once.

Do you still need to find the perfect skin base for your skin type? Try the My Beauty Matches quiz which takes out all the guesswork and provides you with free, unbiased, personalised recommendations within minutes.