Just to warn you in advance, this is a long review. But I feel that this product merits a comprehensive write-up.
Those who have read earlier posts will know that, despite having pretty awful skin (particularly when my period’s due), I don’t look for terms like ‘full coverage’ and ‘long-wear’ when I shop for foundation; a bit of tinted moisturiser and some heavy-duty concealer, and I’m good to go. However, this hasn’t always been the way. I spent my teens covering up my skin, and when I worked in retail as a student, the only thing I could get my skin to look good in under the unflattering strip lighting was Estée Lauder Double Wear. These days, I only turn to what I dub ‘heavy duty’ foundations when I am having a really bad skin day and I’m going somewhere where I might have my photo taken, or if I meet a new client and don’t want to freak them out (I have a really young-looking face, so I do worry that looking spotty might make clients think that I’m actually still in my teens…).
I really ummed and ahhed over Armani’s new foundation, Power Fabric, because I didn’t think I could justify the price given that I might find it too overwhelming for everyday wear. However, my skin has been awful over the last month so this, along with all of the breathless reviews, convinced me to part with my cash.
I opted for shade #4, following Sali Hughes’s advice that you might want to go a shade darker than you wear in Luminous Silk. I bought Luminous Silk in shade #3 a couple of years ago and didn’t really get what the hype was all about. In terms of the colour-match, it was just about perfect for the colour on my face, so just ignore the slight mismatch with the colour of my inner arms!
Coverage-wise, this foundation is purported as a high-coverage, long-wearing formula, but here’s the clincher: it’s not designed to feel heavy on your skin. As a former foundation addict, I’ve read such claims hundreds of times, but they’ve always fallen flat. This is partly why I’ve ditched such foundations; I hate that ‘caked up’ finish that even expensive foundations veer into. People often say that ELDW looks so natural, which aggravates me because it really doesn’t. Not in the daylight. I can assure you. However, this is where Armani has nailed it. This foundation is noticeable on the skin, but it settles into it perfectly. It’s easy to blend (I’ve been using my Real Techniques Expert Face Brush to blend it in rather than my usual haphazard finger application) and the finish is lovely. If you touch your face after applying it, you don’t find it leaving a tacky feeling on your fingers. It settles into a sort of subtly Instagram-filtered finish, by which I mean it isn’t dewy, but it adds a little bit of glow.
As you can see from my before and after pics, my skin is pretty grim/uneven at the moment – I’ve some red and dark patches (some of which I can’t shift because they’re acne scars, FFS), huge pores (again, I can’t shift them because pores are not doors and all that) and some spots.
I must admit that I was kind of expecting this foundation to cover everything and bless me with flawless, Kardashian-esque skin, but I suppose there’s only so much a product can do on mere mortals with troublesome faces. It isn’t that high coverage, but given that it feels like nothing on the skin, I’m very impressed by its efforts to wipe out my redness and spotty bits. After taking these pictures, I did have to add a little bit of concealer over the monster blemish near my jawline (see bottom-right) and under my eyes, but if your skin is calmer than mine then you could easily wear this without any other product on top.
In terms of staying-power, I always wear Urban Decay De-Slick setting spray over my foundation because my skin is extremely oily, and with this as a finishing touch the Power Fabric stays put for a whole working day. Having said that, it has been SO hot in the UK over the last week, and each time that I’ve worn the Power Fabric, it hasn’t lasted nearly as long when faced with my sweat.
Overall, I love this. Unlike other high-coverage foundations, I think this would be feasible to wear in the day time, particularly if you work in retail or cabin crew and checking up on your make-up throughout the day is another thing you don’t need. The only problem I have with it is that I’ve found that I’m using a lot of it to cover my whole face; granted, I have a big face, but because the foundation is so expensive it makes me want to cry a bit.
If you can afford it, Power Fabric is worth the money, and an absolute dream if you have oily or combination skin, or are prone to redness or discolouration. I probably won’t be wearing this every day because I cannot justify the cost, but I will be digging it out for nights out, special occasions and those aforementioned client meetings.
The best bits
- Unlike every other full-coverage foundation I’ve tired, it really does feel light on the skin
- It’s easy to blend
- Armani has a generous shade range which caters to all skin tones
- Fabulous for oily skin – it stays put for a full working day if you set it nicely
- The coverage is buildable, but for financial reasons I only wear a single layer, and get a great amount of coverage, even on the reddest bits of my face
The worst bits
- I found you need to use a little more than one pump to adequately cover your face – for me, this is a bit annoying considering the price of the product
- For something that ends up being washed away at the end of the day, the price is ridiculous for normal people with bills to pay (sorry, I didn’t intend for that to rhyme)
Would I repurchase? Yes