Sunday, 4 August 2013

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Java Face Powder

Yesterday, I came across a new Bourjois collection featuring Happy Light Foundation, two Happy Light Serum Primers in matte and luminous versions and the Java Face Powder at Douglas in France. The Java Face Powder has already been released across the pond in the UK, where the Happy Light foundation and primers are scheduled to be released later in October.

Made in Italy, the Java Face Powder (€11.95/3.5g) is a pale pink-toned beige universal illuminating powder, re-released to celebrate the brand's 150th anniversary. According to Her World, this will be available in Singapore in September for S$19. This was Bourjois' first bestseller with sales of 2.5 million units in 1914. Back then, it was available in four shades: White, Pink, Natural and Rachel.

List of ingredients below.

Packaged in a lightweight tub inspired by the original vintage design, the finely-milled powder is dispensed through small holes. The white plastic lid swivels to cover up the holes. To apply this, I tip a bit of the powder into the cap and pick it up with my RMK powder brush.

The powder is ultra-refined and lightweight with a good dose of micro shimmer.

When swatched heavily, the shimmer particles look very obvious under a bright spotlight but rest assured that this is not how it appears when applied on the face.

In the pics below, the Java Face Powder is swatched lightly on the left side and heavily on the right side. When applied over foundation, the shimmer particles are visible only when examined up close in the mirror. As an illuminating powder, I would say that the effect is very subtle and suitable even for oily skintypes.

I also purchased the Happy Light Foundation #51 Rose Vanilla (€14.95/30ml). Swatching it in the store, I was quite surprised that despite being the lightest of the 4 shades available, Rose Vanilla appeared quite dark against my hand. I am usually the lightest shade for Bourjois' foundations. Nevertheless, as Bourjois is one of my favourite drugstore brands for foundations, I decided to give it a try.

Made in France, Happy Light promises a luminous and flawless complexion in any light and 8 hours of hydration. It's a puzzle why Bourjois felt the need to release another luminous finish foundation as it just released a revamped version of Healthy Mix Foundation, which also promises hydration and luminosity. If you Google "Bourjois Happy Light", you will also discover that Bourjois had another foundation by the same name some years ago that came in cheaper-looking plastic squeeze tube.

Compared with the other Bourjois foundations in my collection, the shade difference is pretty stark. Happy Light #51 is darker and more pink-toned than Healthy Mix Serum Foundation #51 Light Vanilla and 123 Perfect #51 Light Vanilla. Healthy Mix Serum is the most neutral and pale. I wish makeup companies would ensure better consistency in the shades across their different foundations, as finding the right shade is already such a tricky endeavour for the average consumer.

Happy Light has a light texture similar to Healthy Mix Serum that melds into the skin effortlessly. I found it very easy to apply and blend with my Becca foundation brush.

Swatches below taken under indoor lighting.

Swatches below taken in natural light.

The finish is sheer to medium, without looking mask-like. It does not completely cover up the pigmentation on my cheeks but it does help to even out the skintone and camouflage the redness in my cheeks. My pores also appear smaller. The finish is a soft satin without any greasy feeling. In terms of oil control, it was pretty decent. There was just a bit of shine on my nose after two hours of wear in hot summer weather that was easily rectified with some quick blotting.

While I like the natural finish and lightweight texture, it's a pity that #51 Rose Vanilla is just a tad too dark for my MAC NC20 skintone. I think it would suit MAC NC30 better. I'll need to mix this with a light foundation as otherwise, on its own, there is a mismatch between my face and neck/chest. In the pic below, I'm wearing Happy Light topped with the Java Face Powder, without any primer underneath or concealer. If you are interested in Happy Light, do try out the shades on your jawline first to ensure that you get a good match.

List of ingredients below.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post. i actually got my first Bourjois's healthy mixed serum foundation based on your old posts, and i love love it till now :) Will want to try this new Happy Light Foundarion when it arrives in Singapore.
May i ask, for the Java Face Powder, can it be used as a setting powder after liquid foundation?

Thanks Haru :)

InchinaVV said...

I like Healthy Mix Serum. So if it quite similar, I don't need this new version in such dark shade. Thanks a lot for your review!

Haru said...

hi InchinaVV,
If you already own Healthy Mix Serum, I don't think you need Happy Light. The only difference seems to be the inclusion of fruit extracts in Healthy Mix Serum.

hi Anne,
Aww, glad to hear that my recommendation of Healthy Mix worked well for you. The Java Face Powder can be used as a finishing powder after liquid foundation for a subtle glowy effect. The effect is similar to Guerlain Meteorites. It doesn't provide much oil control though, so if you have very oily skin, you may want to consider a more mattifying powder.

Caroline said...

Very nice post! Just surprisingly dark shade of the new Happy Light #51 though :(

Anonymous said...

In the Bourjois shop, at Paris, I found shade 50 Porcelaine for the new foundation Happy Light. This shade is more neutral and pale.

Haru said...

thanks for letting me know that! I was surprised that there were only four shades available at Douglas.

plue said...

I love healthy mix serum, I'm shade 52 for both healthy mix serum n healthy mix. I doubt I'll get any match from happy light. by any chance u tried the revamp version of healthy mix foundation? i read that the new versions are all darker than the current shades, but m not sure if healthy mix serum got a revamp too?

Haru said...

hi Plue,
I haven't tried the new Healthy Mix foundation, not sure how the foundation shades compare to the previous version. If you are #52, you may be able to wear the lightest shade for Happy Light but it's best to test it out in person if you can.

Penny said...

I really love the pictures of the swatches you have in both indoor and natural light! It is also awesome that you have the other bourjois foundations to compare!
i would have definitely made the mistake of buying the same shade as my Flower Perfection!
I love the sheer dewy-ness of it! Very natural finish!

Thanks for the review! It really helped!

Haru said...

hi Penny,
You're welcome, glad that it was helpful :-)

CrystalCandy said...

Wow, there is a huge difference between the shades!! I'm so glad I saw your review, while I love the Healthy Mix Serum foundation, I don't need another bottle. I doubt they have my shade anyway.

deeps said...

I'm shade 52 in healthy mix serum foundation. so would you suggest me going for one shade lighter in the happy light foundation I.e 51 ????
Please help me..really want to go for this happy light one

Haru said...

hi deeps,
#51 for Happy Light is quite dark, so you may want to check out #50 to see if it is a closer match to your skintone. #50 is only available in certain countries like France though. I don't know how #50 compares to #52 in Healthy Mix Serum as #50 is not available in Switzerland.