If you’re texture driven when it comes to make-up, the Shiseido re-launch will have you at hello. We all have our own sensory processing mechanisms for what feels right and what doesn’t on our skin – it’s why some people cannot bear a matte feel and yet others don’t like the feel of dewy.
Shiseido has focused closely on textures in their new formulations – split into Inks, Gels, Powders and Dews – as well as performance. Built to replicate the finesse of skin care, the products are gossamer light, delicate to the touch and weightless in feel.
The heritage of Shiseido, founded in 1872 in Tokyo, takes us back to a time when make-up products were less prolific, more treasured and used with appreciation and care. Despite the fact that the brand uses contemporary formulation innovations, the history is not lost. With some of the slimmest componentry available in the world, designed to feel immediately at ease in the hand. the red lacquer line symbolizes the life force that flows through nature. Reverence and respect for nature is a strong Japanese cultural reference.
Set against a cluttered, confusing and noisy backdrop of cosmetic products, Shiseido’s pieces are calm and elegant – as soothing and gentle on the eye as they are on the skin. A relaunch needs purpose and relevance and I see this one as an antidote to the ‘too muchness’ that we’re all feeling.
I’ll run you through the products that I’ve been testing over the weekend. Starting with the Whipped Powder Blush above – it’s indicative of the common thread you’ll find throughout the relaunch – silky, light textures. To use a food analogy – you know you’ve gone Michelin Star rather than Little Chef. It’s highly pigmented so you need the tiniest amount to blend over your cheeks. Next to it is Aura Dew in Solar, a light reflective, cushion texture highlighter that looks almost glistening wet in consistency. Probably the best highlighter I’ve ever seen in terms of light reflection and glimmer.
The thing you’ll notice immediately about the ModernMatte Lipsticks is that they require literally only one swipe to deliver full cover. You don’t need to mwah your lips or anything – once it’s there, it’s there perfectly. It’s densely pigmented and for a matte, feels like a whisper on the lip.
These are my favourites from the collection – the VisionAiry Gel Lipsticks. Again, so densely pigmented that you need the merest swipe to get full colour. If anything, I’d warn you to go carefully with application as it’s so intense you could easily end up with more than you want. The Kajal Ink Artist, by the way, is exactly the same – you need a confident hand because when the colour comes it’s absolutely extra!
I found the Imperialash Mascara to be inky and fulsome without being spectacular – you’d be pushed to find anything wrong with it, but I didn’t go ‘wow’ when it was on my lashes. So, it’s delivering but not beyond expectation.
If you like a powder, InnerGlow Cheek Powder is probably the lightest feel blush you’ll find. It’s the only product that needed building a little, but there are plenty of shades so I guess it’s down to whichever shade you choose. If you’re pale skinned, this is a dream! It’s shade 06. It’s supposed to have a glow element to it but I couldn’t detect it in this shade.
So, in the swatches, from bottom to top, it’s ModernMatte in 502, then 517, followed by Aura Dew in Solar, Whipped Blush in Sonoya, Visionairy Gels in 221, 222, 208, KajalInk in Sumi Sky.
Everything launches on 1st September although it’s already launched on Shiseido.com HERE in the US if you want to browse the entire collection.
All products are sent to me as samples from brands and agencies unless otherwise stated. Affiliate links may be used. Posts are not affiliate driven.