Wednesday, August 8, 2012

You Oughta Be In Pictures!: Urban Decay Naked Skin Review

Photo Credit: Sephora
Hey guys! It's time to dust off the ol' magic bag o' samples! Today's pick: Urban Decay Naked Skin liquid foundation.

If you're new to Adorable Napalm, let me get you up to speed on the magic bag o' samples. Back when Thomas and I first got married, I developed a bit of a sampling...problem. Rather than continuing to turn our home into Hoarders-meets-The Borrowers, with teeny-tiny piles all over the place, I culled the collection down to the million, or so, packets I might actually use, tossed the rest, and started making myself go through at least one foil pack a day until I ran out. It took ages, but I managed to get through...well, most of them. There are a few that I haven't braved, yet. Plus, the occasional new sample still squeaks through. Case in point: Naked Skin. It showed up in a recent Sephora order.

This is one sample I didn't hoard! I'm already a huge fan of Urban Decay, and have been very eager to try this out. The sample packet came with four shade options and an incredibly handy tool for choosing your shade. It was a clear sheet of plastic with all 18 shades sheerly printed. Hold the plastic up to your jawline, and the darkest shade that disappears on to your skin is your match. It was a very simple but effective test, and I found that I'm a 2.0 (For reference, I'm also a MAC NW15--yes, we do exist, and we glow in the dark). 2.0 was one of the shades included, so I grabbed it and set to work.

The first thing I noticed was that this was, duh, a liquid. I went to dab a bit on the back of my hand, and ended up with all of the packet's contents gushing out! This foundation has a very thin consistency, and I found that my Real Techniques stippling brush made for the easiest brush application. A sponge would probably work even better, but I had a small product flood to contend with, and the brush was handier.

As I buffed the product into my skin, I was amazed by how well it covered. I really expected this to be light-to-medium coverage, but it's really much more like almost full-to-full. I only needed the tiniest bit of concealer under my eyes and to finish covering one blemish. Even more amazing was how lightweight the foundation felt for that much coverage. It really did feel weightless! I did not use a primer with this, because I wanted to test its longevity on its own. Here's a picture of my skin, minus primer, minus concealer, pre-powder (because I'm brave...):

My pores? Where did they go? They took the dark circles with them, too!
 I went about the rest of my makeup routine as usual, then snapped this photo.

I am totally changing my Facebook picture to this. And wearing this makeup look all the time. Heck, I may just blow up the picture, cut it out, and carry it around on a popsicle stick like a little mask. TAKEN WITH A CELL PHONE, Y'ALL!!!
 I adore the way this photographs. It looks airbrushed! This, by the way, was the only attempt at a photo of this foundation, and it has not been edited in any way. Looooove. Now, I didn't use flash for this picture, but it should be noted that this foundation would be wonderful for flash photography. It doesn't contain SPF, and sunscreen can flash back in photos. That said, because it doesn't contain SPF, you would want to wear a sunscreen with this product any time you aren't having your picture taken.

Of course, I still had to put it to the two most difficult tests: time and humidity.

I went on to my voice-over job, which is pretty darn laid-back. It's indoors, in air-conditioning, and I don't move around too much. By the time I arrived--only about three hours after application--the areas around my nose, mouth, and eyes had already caked a bit. Throughout the day, I noticed myself getting a little shiny around the T-zone, too, but was able to blot most of the oil off.

After work, Thomas and I went walking with my friend, Genna. We don't so much power walk as we stroll around the neighborhood and talk, but I decided to leave the makeup on and see how it stood up to the heat and sweat. I doubt any of you will be slathering on foundation before hitting the gym, but some folks may have outdoor Summer weddings to attend. You can work up quite a "glow" rocking out to the chicken dance, let me tell you. Well, before too long, I was glowing up a storm, and my foundation was glowing all over my hands, as I wiped around my eyes and forehead. Heck, I managed to glow so brightly, I had foundation fingerprints on my shorts and t-shirt, by the time I got back to the car. I didn't take a picture because A) there wasn't much of anything left on my face, at that point, and B) nobody wants to see that. Ew.

So, how does it rate? Let's take a look!

Shade Range: Fabulous. There are 18 shades from porcelain to deep, with a variety of undertones. I found my match right off the bat, and that almost never happens. 10 out of 10.

Application: Easy to apply and blend, buildable for almost full coverage. 10 out of 10.

Appearance: Gorgeous! The finish is demi-matte, so you don't look too shimmery or too "made up". It's just a very natural finish. Photographs beautifully. 10 out of 10.

Wear: Feels like you're not wearing makeup, but does have a tendency to cake. There was some oiliness, and it did not hold up to sweat at all. 4 out of 10.

Price: At $38, it's much more expensive than drugstore brands, but it's right smack dab in the middle of higher-end price points. 7 out of 10.

Before I give the final verdict, I'd like to reiterate how gorgeous this is in photographs. If you are having bridal portraits--or any portraits--done, this would be my go-to product. I would experiment with primers, powders, and setting sprays before wearing this for the actual wedding day (especially if it's an outdoor wedding), but I highly recommend this for pictures. I also think this will be brilliant for holiday parties this Winter, when it's colder, drier, the parties only last a few hours, and you're going to photographed into oblivion.

Final Verdict: 8.2 out of 10. For short periods of wear and photographs, I highly recommend.

***UPDATE! Urban Decay will be on Hautelook ( on Friday, starting at 10AM Central!


  1. This foundation looks gorgeous on you in that photograph! Your skin looks flawless. It's a shame to hear about it not lasting very well though, and about the cakeiness.

    - Rhi xx

    1. Thank you so much! It broke my heart, I have to say. If you get your hands on a sample, try it with a good primer and a setting spray. It may surprise us! :)


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