I'm in the cult!
There is a reason that Estee Lauder double wear foundation is a cult favorite, because this product does exactly what it says it will. No marketing tricks here, just a great product! To start, if you cannot find a color match with all the selections available you are just to picky, or you are picking the wrong foundation shade. I find with some foundations, choose the color below and color above your desired foundation, mix them together equal parts and boom, there you have it, your color. I was color matched by a excellent Estee Lauder makeup artist at a mall kiosk. She glanced at the skin under my chin, poured me two samples (because I already had foundation on) and told me to try both. Both samples were enough to wear a couple times to discover if this foundation was right for me or not. I settled on the lighter of the two shades because I did find (like almost all foundations) it did oxidize and by the end of the day you are a shade darker.
The packaging was simple and sleek. The smell was not bothersome to me at all. The foundation itself I find to be of medium consistency. Not to liquid not to thick. Shake that bottle up really well or you will end up with an inconsistent formula. If you do not already know, this is a FULL coverage foundation. No if and or butts, this stuff will cover up the darkest of circles, scars ect. I usually pour out a quarter size or just a little bit more size of foundation for my whole face. What I do like about the packaging is you can put product back into the bottle if you over estimate the amount you need. While a pump applicator is clean and easier, I prefer not to waste of drop of this precious stuff. Many a time I have over poured, or decided I wanted a lighter coverage and put some back. I spread the foundation on my face, and down my chin and a little bit of my neck with a mask brush. I usually spread it on my entire face because it does not dry up quickly. I then use a damp beauty sponge and stipple the foundation into my face. I do not use a primer because quite frankly I have not found one that either doesn't break me out, or doesn't control oil ect as it say it will. If anyone has any recommendations on a primer that actually does what it says it will, without breaking you out, for someone with combination skin, please let me know. I am desperate to find a primer for I have large pores and I really want to fill them in and have a smooth matte look.
I love how this stuff dries into a flawless matte finish. No glow here, just a blank canvas to work with for sculpting with bronzer, highlight and blush. I use this on my eyelids as well for a great eye lid primer before I do my eye shadow.
The staying power of this stuff is AMAZING, they don't call it double wear for nothing. Yes I still have oil break through depending on my diet. A simple blot of a tissue and poof, back to original application look. This stuff has got me through some LONG days and even at the end of the day I had to use a balm to remove it.
I have repurchased this product at least a dozen times. No matter how many other foundations I try I always come back to this one. It was my first high end foundation purchase, while not my last, still my favorite. They say a dupe for this is the Revlon color stay foundation, I have tried it, not even close, but will do in a pinch. I find the Revlon has me oily within hours. I would consider using the BB creamof ELDW for a lighter look during summer time. I may just do that right after I write this review....Ulta here is another paycheck of mine ;)
To summarize: full coverage, matte finish, staying power awesome, price on the high end but well worth it.
Once you try it, you'll be hooked....