Why this $65 NARS foundation is my go-to for brown skin tones

·4 min read
I tried the new NARS Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation. Image via Sephora.
I tried the new NARS Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation. Image via Sephora.

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In the world of beauty, few brands are as beloved as NARS. The brand is a go-to among shoppers and beauty gurus alike for their long-wearing formulations and cult-classic products.

Recently, they launched the Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation, a makeup-skincare-hybrid foundation that's comprised of 70 percent skincare ingredients.

As a makeup and skincare lover myself, I knew I had to put the newest NARS foundation to the test to see if it really lives up to its claims.

NARS Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation

NARS Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation. Image via Sephora
NARS Light Reflecting Advanced Skincare Foundation. Image via Sephora

$65 CAD/$49 USD at Sephora

The details

This $65 CAD/$49 USD foundation offers buildable coverage that conceals visible redness, blemishes, and dark spots while blurring the look of wrinkles, pores, and texture. It also includes Light Reflecting Complex, which reflects light, for enhanced luminosity to blur the look of imperfections.

Key ingredients include Biomimetic Oat reduce the appearance of redness; Japanese Lilyturft to support a strong skin barrier by helping maintain moisture, and Cacao Peptides and Milk Thistle to minimize the negative effects of blue light and environmental stressors.

The formula is designed to be super lightweight — immediately giving a dewy finish which makes the skin appear smoother.

NARS Light Reflecting Foundation Test
NARS Light Reflecting Foundation Test

Personally, I love the brightening formula that gives the skin a real glow, looking more natural than a highlighted look. Since it does feel quite lightweight, if you're not looking for a full glam face but more of a natural glow, I would opt for this foundation.

I have been using NARS products for years because they match my skin tone so well — even when I go up a shade after a tan. For that reason, I was glad to find that the shades in the Light Reflecting Foundation are the same as the other NARS foundations and work great for brown skin tones.

However, I found that the foundation is not very buildable or longlasting. If you want to cover all kinds of pores and scars, you might want to opt for the NARS Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation instead.

What others are saying

The NARS foundation has quickly become a hit among shoppers and on social media, and has already earned a 4.3 star rating on Sephora's site.

One shopper who gave this product five stars, said: "I've struggled for the longest time to find a foundation that doesn't make me look cakey and as though I'm wearing 100 pounds of makeup. This is a game changer! I'm so happy I've finally found my holy grail!"

Another user wrote: "With this foundation, I forget I’m even wearing it! It's so lightweight and skin like. The texture is very thin and liquidy and applies effortlessly."

TikTok users are also loving the lightweight formula and its glow-inducing effect. TikTok user Halima A. shared that it "blends like butter" and "literally looks like skin and feels so lightweight."


Despite the many positive reviews, one consistent piece of negative feedback has been that the product doesn't work well on dry skin.

"This foundation does not work on dry skin. I tried with my fingers, a brush, a sponge and with or without primer. It breaks up after 3 hours and looks heavy," one Sephora reviewer wrote.

Another shared that it didn't work well on her combination skin, writing, "I have dry/oily combination skin. I recently bought this foundation since everyone was hyping about it. I do NOT like it. After a while it makes my face very oily and cakey."


Based on my own experience and other customer reviews, the general consensus is that this NARS foundation seems to work well, but is not the most long-lasting formula. That said, it does give an immediate glow effect, and the lightweight formula gives enough coverage for a more natural look.

I do like the texture and how easily it blends into the skin. It's well suited if you don't want a super glam look, and prefer a simple natural finish that covers up your pores for a quick event or meeting. However, those who want a more full-coverage base may want to give this foundation a pass.

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