After strolling into quite possibly the most drool-worthy Sephora store I've ever seen in San Francisco with a Christmas gift card in tow, my eyes shot straight to one particular display - Giorgio Armani. I'd heard that Armani Beauty was available in some of the larger stores like NYC, but this was my first time seeing it for myself. Of course, I had access to Armani counters in department stores, but there's nothing like the constant peering eyes of preying SAs to push me towards the exit. So, with the freedom of finally being able to examine and experiment with the line in peace, I went to town and swatched and tested out many products I'd been interested in for quite some time, including their cult product - Luminous Silk Foundation.
Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation boasts the ability to "capture the glow of perfect skin." Pretty serious claim, no? Its consistency is neither too liquid to be applied with a brush, nor too thick to be applied with fingers or a sponge. Although I've used all three aforementioned methods of application, stamping the foundation on then gently blending it in with the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge is currently my favorite. Luminous Silk blends in effortlessly and looks nearly undetectable on the skin. The finish is also somewhere in the middle - it's neither dewy nor matte, but appears incredibly natural with a touch of luminous glow. If you had healthy, perfect, model-esque skin, the kind that looks like it's never even heard of sun damage or age spots and somehow just seems to glow from within, it would look like this.
Bare skin (L) and after applying only Luminous Silk Foundation in 3.5
Luminous Silk has medium coverage that effectively conceals the minor redness around my nose and the acne scars on my chin. Blemishes and more serious problem areas still require concealer for a perfect canvas, but I'd imagine Luminous Silk has the perfect amount of coverage on its own for those with good to mildly spotty skin for everyday wear. I wear the shade 3.5, which is a good match for NC20-25.
The current state of my skin is fairly dry with a slightly oily t-zone, and Luminous Silk has the perfect balance of hydration and oil-controlling properties. It doesn't cling on to any dry patches and blends in seamlessly with the help of the Real Techniques sponge, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that my oiliest areas still remained shine-free for hours, only typically requiring one blot midday without any terribly detectable breakdown even by the end of the day. I haven't even felt the need for primer or powder. I'm not sure there will ever be a foundation that truly performs well on all skin types, but I think Luminous Silk comes darn close. Hourglass Immaculate and Dior Nude BB Creme better start watching their backs. There's a new favorite in town.