review, pics & swatches: chanel vitalumière aqua ultra-light skin perfecting makeup


A foundation that’s been on the circuit for a few years now and has great reviews: Chanel’s Vitalumière Aqua was not a natural choice because I have poor luck with finding a good match even with higher end brands offering broader shade selections.
The Beige Ambré (BA) shades are yellow based/warm toned, Beige Rose (BR) shades lean pink/ cool tones while the Beige (B) shades are neutral. Given this makeup has quite a following and Chanel has made allowances for different skin undertones, I succumbed to curiosity and got myself a bottle.



VOLUME/SIZE 30ml / 1fl.oz.
FORMULATION Oil-free, SPF 15, all skin types, scented
TEXTURE/FINISH Dewy, natural
LONGEVITY 6h without primer
>8h with primer
PACKAGING Squeezable small plastic bottle with nozzle dispenser
RANGE 7 shades in Australia of a possible 11 (US) or 14 (FR)

I bought this in shade #BA40 Beige Ambré Desert.


Right off the bat, I’ll have you know the only issue I really have with this foundation is the level of pinkness which means it will never be a good match for my skin tone. Having said that, it is less pink than its peers (Guerlain, Dior and YSL). Put shade aside and I have little bad to say about this makeup.

Let’s start with the packaging. it’s in a cute, plastic bottle that stands out from the rest because of its rectangular shape. I love the geometric lines and practicality of the shape – so nifty to pack and travel with because you wouldn’t worry about it breaking and it is super lightweight. Nor would you lose sleep over whether the contents will spill and make a mess because the lid is a simple screw-top cap. Clean and simple.

A drawback is that you can’t see how much product is left inside as you use it. I feel like mine has been on last dregs for a few months now but there’s still heaps to go. I’ve started placing it upside down lately to make it easy to dispense as it runs out.

To use this foundation, it is important to shake it vigorously first to combine the pigments well. Since it is an oil-free formula, the liquids separate when it sits for some time resulting in a watery mess if you fail to shake first. The nozzle dispenser makes it a breeze to squeeze out just the right amount. My preference is for light, natural coverage so I use about less than a pea-sized amount for my face and neck.

Now, I tend to be sensitive to fragrances, some of which can trigger multiple-day-long migraines. Vitalumière Aqua is scented, but oh so lightly. It’s a lovely, fresh, floral scent that only lasts until you’ve applied the foundation. I rather like it!

It is rarely that I deviate from my usual method of applying foundation which is to dot it on the face then buff it in with a brush. It is no different with this foundation. Once applied, it leaves the skin looking fresh and natural, perhaps event slightly damp. Because it is water-based, I was not expecting heavy coverage and I use it for a second-skin effect. Coverage can be built up by layering the foundation but I would expect that to take away from the natural finish if you go beyond medium coverage.

Vitalumière Aqua is fantastic for daily work wear and weekends. I found I had to blot away shine at the 5 hour mark (I have combination skin) without which it tends to fade after 6 hours. Primer helps the foundation stay put longer and keeps it from oxidising – this happens to me some days. I use a primer with a yellow base (Koh Gen Do) to correct the pinkness. In this way, I have been able to continue using this foundation even after I first deemed it too ashy to wear.

This is a great foundation if you are looking for something fuss free, clean and natural/dewy looking. There are similar finish foundations out there though and because of the Chanel price point, you may explore your options. For someone with olive skin, it is too much effort to wear this foundation as it requires colour correction.

Bottom line: if you don’t mind the price, and can find a good shade match, your prayers for a clean finish makeup may be answered.







Without primer. Vitalumière Aqua oxidises slightly on me in about 10 minutes.


Here is what it looks like on me on different days, in different natural light. I’m also wearing it here.



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q3f1eubHave you tried Chanel’s Vitalumière Aqua foundation yet?
What did you think of it?

review, pics & swatches: chanel vitalumière aqua ultra-light skin perfecting makeup

7 thoughts on “review, pics & swatches: chanel vitalumière aqua ultra-light skin perfecting makeup

  1. At first, it looks like it’s a perfect olive yellow color. But I do see how it subtly got slightly more orange-red — and that would look really pink/red on the face as the day goes on. Looks like Koh Gen Do is a must-buy.


    1. To be fair, it doesn’t oxidise much and everyone’s skin chemistry is different. It might not oxidise at all on others.
      As for KGD, don’t jump the gun 🙂 It has it’s pros and cons. Review coming soon 🙂


      1. I deliberately try not to test/look for this in chanel counters because I am a sucker for watery/sheer foundations and I’d be sad if I didn’t have a match. I have the Koh Gen Do Aqua in OC2 nd it’s great so far. No pink or orange whatsoever.

        Will watch out for your review on the yellow corrector


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