NARS Sheer Matte


301 reviews

47% would repurchase

Package Quality: 2.9

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 2.9

Price: $$$


Water, Phenyl Trimethicone, Triethylhexanoin, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Dipropylene Glycol, Silica, Talc, Dimethicone, PEG-5 Glyceryl Stearate, Isostearic Acid, Bentonite, Stearic Acid, Behenic Acid, Batyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate SE, 1-Methyhydantoin-2-imide, Behenyl Alcohol, Aminomethyl Propanol, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Potassium Hydroxide, Cellulose Gum, Ethylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Tocopheryl Acetate, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Serralysin, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Trisodium EDTA, Glucosyl Hesperidin, [may contain: titanium dioxide, iron oxides, iron oxides]

on 11/11/2011 4:48:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Black, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Black

1. Packaging - Doesn't come with a pump. It's just a glass bottle that you have to tip over and jostle to get the product out. Totally unhygienic. For the price, I would expect at least a pump but you have to buy it separately. The cap has a similar texture to other NARS packaging. Total fail.

2. Shade - I was matched with Santa Fe, for reference I'm NC 30 with a strong yellow/olive undertone. At the NARS counter surrounded by bright white and yellow lighting it's a perfect match. Outside it seems a little to pink for my taste. But then again there are very few little foundations that actually match my skin perfectly without adding some sort of green base to adjust the undertone of my foundation. And looking at the counter they do have a wide variety of shades that would suit a wide variety of women so that's a plus.

3. Coverage & Finish - As the name implies it's sheer, so I didn't expect any sort of coverage. It just slightly evened out my skin. And as the name says, it's matte, so it does provide a matte finish - but sheerly, because most of your skin will show through.

4. Price - It's expensive. Disappointingly so. In my area this is as expensive as Lunasol and more expensive than Shu Uemura, but those two products deliver more for the buck as compared to NARS Sheer Matte.

Verdict: This is appropriate for women with oily skin and who's into a no makeup makeup look. As NARS Sheer Matte provides a lightweight coverage with mattifying properties. Even if it's matte, it doesn't photograph well, because it doesn't provide any significant coverage. You will still need a lot of concealer to cover spots so if you need more coverage this is not for you.

on 10/11/2011 1:11:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I love Nars Sheer Matte, it's the perfect foundation for my oily skin. It stays matte, but also gives a nice natural glow. I'm really happy that they have a nice light shade that matches my skin tone well because I find it hard to get a good match with high end foundations. Definitely re-purchasing, I LOVE this foundation.

on 10/11/2011 2:54:00 AM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

To my mind, this is about all you can ask for in a foundation. But first, a little background. I'm a guy and for years I've used just a bit of powder and concealer. But as I've gotten older (I'm 43 now) I've needed more and more of both. I realized I was concealing much of my face, and powder was leaving the lower part of my face dry looking.
I thought maybe a tinted moisturizer would be the answer. But of the several I tried, all left me with that creepy "face gloss" look that seems to be unavoidable when using products with a lot of minerals/mineral-based SPF. Reluctantly, I decided to tip my toe in to the heroin of makeup- foundation.
I first tried 2 from MAC but the coverage was so opaque I tossed the samples, hit up the Chanel counter, and tried Perfection Lumiere (which I've also reviewed) and AquaLumiere (which was a mess!). Then, a discovery...
I tried out Nars SM Foundation at Sephora. The artist who helped me was awesome. We quickly determined that Barcelona was the color that would give me the effect I wanted, and she sent me on my way with a huge sample.
This blends very easily and is designed to be applied with the fingertips, so no investing in a pricey brush. The coverage is absolutely traceless, but covered my red patches, reduced my dark circles enough that I no longer bother with concealer, and maintained a natural matte appearance all day. It's not called a long-wear product but I've been getting 10 hours out of it easily. I've also tried a bit of powder on top of it, and while I think it would be fine on a girl it's too much for me.
Now, I will say it's ridiculous that they don't put a pump on it, or at least enclose one with the bottle. And to make them harder to get a hold of than plutonium is just dumb. Luckily, Barney's had just received a shipment and by happenstance I asked about them so I plunked down another 6 bucks and got my pump.
To summarize, this foundation provides surprising coverage that is so traceless even a guy can use it. It did nothing "bad" to my skin, lasts all day with a natural matte finish and minimal transfer, and washes off easily. They just need to do something about the bottle/pump issue!

13 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

on 9/16/2011 1:32:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Oily, Medium, Warm

Hair: Black, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Brown

This is now my holy grail foundation. I have oily and acne prone skin and I really like the fact that this foundation still allows for my skin to look natural and not cakey. Most other foundations made for oily skin are so heavy and they make my skin look so unnatural. I've seen people complain that this does not have enough coverage to cover up acne or acne scars....but hello....thats what concealers are for. Plus this is a buildable foundation. What sold me on this product completely is the fact that it does not break me out.
Just as a side note for those of you who are torn between this foundation and the MUFE Matte Velvet +, I have used MUFE and it is also a very good foundation. It was my go-to foundation before I discovered Nars. The MUFE has full coverage but it was just too heavy for me. I needed something lighter, almost to feel like I wasn't wearing foundation, if that makes sense. When you have oily skin the last thing you want to feel is heavy foundation sitting on your face. So definately, the Nars foundation had everything I needed. Lighter formula that didn't look cakey and medium coverage that is buildable plus no breakouts..yay!. The only thing that I wish it would have had is a pump. Don't like the idea that there wasn't a's just less sanitary and less can get messy if not carefull. But I recently learned that they sell the pump individually at the Nars wesbite for $5 so at least it's available.

on 8/22/2011 3:09:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Olive, Warm

Hair: Black, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Finally a foundation meant for brown people! Or really warm olive skin but seriously its ridiculous the number of foundations I have tried -dior, chanel, estee lauder, lancome, guerlain, covergirl (wayyy back in the day) but none of them are 'warm' enough they either dull out my skintone or make me wish I was pasty and cool toned I mean I'm not super dark but with the number of failed foundation matches it makes one almost want to give up! The beauty of having olive skin is the sun-kissed look year around but honestly the novelty wears off when you tan so easily and your once-perfect match no longer fits it SUCKS its easier finding a new dude than hg foundation..Anyways on to the foundation.
I heard the hype about nars and loved their blushes and I have to say the foundation lives up to the nars name. I tried both sheer glow and matte and while I love sheer in the summertime I 'glow' plenty on my own. The sheer glow lasted a good 5 hrs with powder but the matte wow that lasted me from 7 am till 9pm (work then drinks) with the tiniest bit of shine not oily by any means more natural than anything. I loved it now the texture of the foundation is very liquid-y/runny (water like almost) I love the fact I don't feel like I have goop on my face. Blending is pretty easy but I'm a makeup whore so its based on ones comfort zone I suppose because you do need a quick hand as it dries fast. The color was a dead on match I was wary at first because I don't have a yellow undertone (really why is it when makeup brands come out with foundations for different ethnicities they all assume we ALL have yellow undertones?!) but anyways nars has turmeric extract so its actually good for your skin and thats why the foundation tends to oxidize orange-ish sort of which works for me. Initially early summer I was syracuse but now from being outdoors so much I match to cadiz. And it matches so perfectly that it looks like I have nothing on which is what I was looking for. The coverage is sheer to medium but I literally use a tiny drop after my primer and blend with a brush and I am good to go. But bewarned the bottle does NOT have a pump which is very very irritating for someone that likes to throw on a splash of color and be out the door quick.
Overall, this is a must buy to those who are tired of searching for their hg and have warm undertones. Plus nars has kickass names I thought I was imagining things when I read gobi as one of the foundation names as thats punjabi for 'cauliflower' and one of my friends who pushed me to try it cause she works for them (btw thanks nina) told me its intentional. anyways try it!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

on 8/20/2011 10:36:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Medium, Warm

Hair: Brown, Wavy, Coarse

Eyes: Brown

I really like this foundation!!! I don't know why the bad reviews. I think most foundations I buy are around the price point, so I think you get what you pay for. I don't want to break out I want to look natural and I want coverage. This foundation does all that. YES i can buy MAC for about 12 dollars less, but I Have never found a good match and in some I am NC, and for Studio Fix, I am NW so I have to always wonder. This I wear Syracuse, which I thought would be way too dark for my NC30 skin, but it is perfect..??? THe yellow undertones aren't too much but make it look natural. I will buy this again. The pump I was given one from the sample bottles, but I still haven't used it, I like to use a little on the back of my hand warm up the foundation and press into my skin. IT covers, but doesn't at all look cakey. I don't use a brush, it doesn't work with this. I set with a bronzer and I am good.. All day!!! I say try it. Expensive, maybe but no compared to anything with quality...:)

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

on 8/19/2011 6:38:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Medium, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Brown

How do I explain this.. this foundation doesn't exactly have a "second skin" finish, but you can tell it's high end. You skin does look made up, but in the same way a celebrity's skin would look on the red carpet. It's a nice satin finish, without being a flat matte. There's a subtle glow in the right places. This doesn't stay matte all day on my combo skin, but it holds up better than my regular Tarte tinted moisturizer and I can handle blotting and powdering once or twice. This foundation CAN highlight some dry patches and peach fuzz, but I only notice this sometimes.. so it probably depends on the lighting. One thing to keep in mind is that Sheer Matte's shade selection is NOT parallel to Sheer Glow's. Be careful when choosing a color. It's hard to find a shade match for my complexion, a TOTALLY neutral light olive, but Punjab works fine enough in the summer. The fact that there is no match close enough to my coloring stops me from giving this a perfect rating, I'd love to incorporate it into my rotation of daily foundations but can't. :( Still, it's a product worth trying.

on 8/9/2011 9:35:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Dry, Medium, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

I tried this product today from sample I got at Sephora and I was really surprised how easy it was to apply it. Really smooth and nice. Also they have many colors to match, mine is Deauville (or Fiji, if I'm more tanned). It woked well, but at the end of the day it was little caky and coming off when touched but well.. its almost as good as Revlon Colorstay. Only it was much easier to take it off. I will give some more tries and update later.
P.S. I love the bottle. I am so tired of Revlon bottle. My other concern is price - CAD 55+tax.
Update: Have been using this for almost a week and have to say - this foundations is NOT for hot summer days.. My make up is just melting off... and its impossible to wear sunglasses.. All make up around my nouse is gone.. yuck.

on 8/8/2011 12:14:00 AM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Normal, Fair, Cool

Hair: Blond, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Blue

UPDATE: So I've had this foundation since the end of May and I'm 2/3 of the way through the bottle (I use it every day). I don't think I'll be buying this again. I hate that there is no pump. The product is starting to get a little, what's the word, thick? There is no way I'm buying a new bottle when I have one third left so I will use it up but I find that, if I had the pump, I wouldn't have this problem. Since I'm in Canada, there is no way I am going to pay $5 US plus shipping for something I think should come with the bottle. It's too bad because I love the colour selection that Nars has!

I bought this foundation in Mont Blanc a couple of months ago. I really like it. It is light but it does even out my skin tone. I think if one has a lot of blemishes/marks to cover this may be too sheer. It doesn't aggravate my sensitive skin and seems to stay on pretty much all day. I don't re-apply my foundation. I'm happy because I don't look like I have a mask on my face!

The only negative is the crappy packaging. It's hard to get the product out and I think it's silly to have to purchase a pump separately and on-line at NARS only no less. Despite that, I will purchase again.

on 8/4/2011 11:25:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Sensitive, Dark, Cool

Hair: Black, Kinky, Fine

Eyes: Brown

My goodness the staying power of this foundation is non-existent. Maybe it is due to the weather but every time I wear this foundation, it slips off my face and I am using the NARS Pro-Prime primer. All that is left is the concealer and without the foundation, I look like a splotchy fool. I will use up but I will not repurchase this. And that hurts my heart to type that because I love the NARS line.

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