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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Review: New Revlon Nearly Naked Makeup SPF20 and Pressed Powder

I've been testing the new Revlon Nearly Naked foundation and pressed powder for several weeks now, so I'm finally ready to give you my verdict! And by the way, I purchased the shade 130 Shell and the pressed powder in 020 Light at my local Rite Aid, but while I was testing these products I actually received two additional shades directly from Revlon (120 Vanilla and 150 Nude, below) so I'm including swatches of those shades as well.

Revlon Nearly Naked Makeup SPF20 in 120 Vanilla, 130 Shell and 150 Nude
(retail: around $9.99 each, 1.0 oz)

Keep reading for my full review...

As you can see above, Vanilla is paler and a bit more yellow than Shell. Shell, while not cool, has more more peach to it. I can wear either shade and I'm a MAC NC20, although I prefer Shell. If you're a "pale NC20" then I'd say get Vanilla. Nude is darker and more peach than both Vanilla and Shell.

No pump

There are sixteen foundation shades in this range, and if you haven't seen the display yet, there's a guide mounted to the display for helping you determine your exact shade (there's also a guide on the Revlon website here). When I used the online shade guide, it led me directly to Shell, which is actually the best fit for my skintone.

I've seen some online reviews for this foundation written by people with very fair skintones, as well as deeper skintones. The one common theme seems to be that people on either end of the spectrum are not having a hard time finding a shade match in this range. I think that's great news, and I would say that this can in part be attributed to the fact that this a sheer, very forgiving formula (more on that in a bit).

Let's take a look at the powder before I show you some before and afters:

Revlon Nearly Naked Pressed Powder in 020 Light
(retail: around $9.99, 0.28 oz)

The powder in this line comes in six shades (there are only four shades in the counter display but six on the Revlon website). If your skintone doesn't fall within the shades in the counter display, you'll have to wait until this line moves over to the permanent wall display before you'll be able to find a shade match. ME, it's worth the wait (more on that in a bit).

This powder comes with a cute little applicator, but I always use a big, fluffy brush for my setting powders so I can't comment on the effectiveness of the applicator. I've been using the Real Techniques Multi Task Brush with this powder and it's been working beautifully. In fact, I'm impressed with how little fallout this powder produces when I swirl my brush:

Taken after swirling my brush several times on the surface of the powder

Here's a color-corrected photo that most accurately represents the shade Light:

Light looks a bit dark (both in photos and in real life) but when applied on my skin, it's actually a very nice match and looks seamless.

Some before and after photos:

clean, bare skin

after applying Nearly Naked Makeup in 130 Shell

Nearly Naked Makeup in 130 Shell + Nearly Naked Powder in Light

As you can see above, this product settled into my large pores and other drier patches of skin on my face. I could not improve this by using a stippling brush, duo-fiber brush or foundation brush (I tried all of the above). In fact, this product seems to work best for me when applied with my fingers (using a stippling brush seemed to cause the foundation to pool up in my pores even more than when I used my fingers for application). To fix this issue, I would very much suggest using a foundation primer before application (if you have larger pores like mine).

Aside from the pooling issue, I think this is a beautiful formula that has that "melts into your skin and disappears" quality that so many people love. This is a sheer foundation that feels very much like a decadent tinted moisturizer (not a watery, super thin tinted moisturizer). When this product sets, the finish is almost powdery (not dewy in the slightest) but it looks very, very natural. It can almost make me appear as if I'm not wearing any foundation at all.

There doesn't seem to be any added  fragrance to this foundation (it doesn't smell like flowers or soap or anything like that). If anything, I'd say it has a very standard "foundation" scent to it, but it's not strong (much more mild than ColorStay, for example).
In terms of coverage, this is a sheer foundation so do not expect full coverage (or even medium coverage). For my skin, this product helped to correct redness, but it did not conceal any dark spots, old acne scars, etc. although it did help diminish the look of imperfections (while not completely concealing them). As you can see above, this product did nothing to help conceal my dark circles, but no foundation does that for me.  If you don't have very good skin to begin with, I would say that you'll definitely need to use concealer in conjunction with this product.
Staying power on my oily skin (without the help of any primer) is good for a non-long-wear type of product. I can go about 6-7 hours before I start to see fading and this product does not oxidize (turn orange) on my skin. But please keep in mind that I have been testing this product in the winter, so even though I have very oily skin, it's obviously less oily in the colder months. I have no idea how this product will perform for me in the dead of summer.
 The complete and utter surprise for me, when it comes to the Nearly Naked line, is this powder. It is absolutely lovely and I have a hard time thinking of anyone who would not love this product.  It's actually one of the best setting powders I've used in quite some time.

First of all, there's very little to no fallout during application. This product is so finely-milled that it feels like you're not applying anything at all. It's whisper-light, yet it sets foundation beautifully and really helps to lock everything into place (I've actually used it with other foundations, in addition to Nearly Naked, and it works just as beautifully with every other foundation I've tried).

What I really love about this powder is that it doesn't have that chalky, powdery look to it (my photo makes it seem a tiny bit chalky, but I assure you that in real life, it looks extremely natural). It's not heavy, so you may think you need to apply more...and then more...but you really can stop with one application. My natural inclination, because I have such oily skin, is to always go a little heavier with my powder. What's great about this product is that even if I build and apply additional layers, it never looks heavy. It has very natural-looking quality to it that I don't find with may drugstore setting powders.

Another thing that makes this powder a winner for me is that it does a great job at controlling oil. Again, I've been testing this in the wintertime, but even so, my skin usually has breaktrhough shine by noon. Sometimes I can go until 2 or 3 o'clock before using a blotting sheet on my t-zone. Also, I've noticed that when I use this product, it helps to control that sticky feeling that some foundations leave behind after they've mixed with the natural oils of my face. Bonus!

FINAL VERDICT:  If you're looking for a true, nearly naked look when it comes to your foundation and powder, I would indeed recommend this new line from Revlon. Those who require medium-to-full coverage may find that this foundation does not suit their needs, but if you generally gravitate toward tinted moisturizers or sheer foundations, I think you'll be quite pleased with this formula since it really does melt into the skin with a very natural, seamless feel. My only word of caution is to those who have large pores or dry patches--you will need to use a foundation primer beforehand to keep this product from settling into imperfections. And if you have old acne scars, dark spots, etc., don't expect this foundation to conceal them (or dark circles for that matter)--you will most definitely need to use concealer for additional coverage. As for the powder, I cannot recommend it enough, to everyone (regardless of your foundation coverage preferences). I think it's one of the best drugstore pressed powders released this year in terms of how natural it looks on the skin, how well it locks in foundation and how well it keeps oily breakthrough at bay. It's buildable and never looks cakey on my skin. What more can you ask for, really? 

Have you tried the new Revlon Nearly Naked line yet? Do you think this might be a good option for you? Thoughts?

Some of the products featured in this post were given to Nouveau Cheap for editorial purposes, either directly from the manufacturer or from the agency that works on behalf of the manufacturer. All reviews on are the honest opinion of its author and editorial samples do not, in any way, affect the outcome of product reviews.


  1. I just don't get light-medium foundations. Since it's so easy to sheer out full coverage foundations when my skin is actually behaving, and it's nice to have that around for the days that my skin needs more perfecting, I just don't see myself buying such a sheer formula. Thanks for the review!

    1. That's my thinking too. My guess is that light-medium works well for women with good to great skin who just want to cover a little redness, or even out their skin tone, or maybe just feel too naked without some kind of coverage. Someone like us who has good days and bad days can stick to our full coverage foundation and sheer it out as necessary.

    2. I absolutely hate the feeling of foundation sitting on my skin. So foundations that have light coverage are enough to even my skin tone without giving me that feeling I hate.I've never been able to sheer out a full coverage enough to not get that feeling.

  2. Is it just me or are they offering consumers a more affordable alternative to Urban Decay's Naked Foundation? Have you tried UD's foundation? If so how do they compare/contrast? Thanks! <3

  3. I bought this powder the other day and was seriously considering returning it because the little applicator was so terrible. I didn't even pay much attention to the powder! Guess I'll use a brush (duh) and keep it! I better learn to think outside the (powder) box. ;)

    1. I ditched the sponge and used a it and now seriously thinking about trying the foundation if I can find a good match for my skin powder colour is 03

  4. This is right up my alley. I usually do just light spot coverage, and this combo looks like it would blend effortlessly into the areas on my face that I leave bare. Hoping that Cappuccino is the right shade for me.

  5. I reeeeeeeeally like the way the powder sounds!!! Thanks for the review G!

  6. I have heard several refer to this as a UD naked skin dupe. I do like a light/medium foundation so I may give it a try.

    Questions: Does it stick/cling to dry patches? or just pool in pores? How does it feel on the skin? Does it set or stay sticky until you set it with powder? Does it transfer?

    The powder does sound nice, I have been loving my CG/olay powder for some of the same reasons.. and it sounds very similar, but more matte which would be a plus. I love that "creamy" texture in a powder. The dryer ones just stick to every little dry spot on my skin.

  7. The 120 vanilla looks like a dead on perfect match for my skin tone!!!! Gotta keep my eyes out for this sheer foundation!

  8. Now there is now doubt in my mind about wanting to try out this new line from Revlon. I'm looking for a good powder and this sounds great. Foundation doesn't sound that great at least for my skin. Have you been able to find the new Covergirl Outlast 3 in 1 Foundation?

  9. Interesting. I see Revlon Colorstay is a bit heavy for my skin, I've only use Colorstay when I go to a party

    My shade in Colorstay line is 180 - Sand Beige. Don't know which shade in this Nearly Naked suit my skin...

  10. Thanks for the review! I passed on the powder because I haven't been a fan of Revlon powders. I really liked this foundation since I normally use a tinted moisturizer for every day wear. Now I have to try the powder out! You've convinced me.

  11. Great review, thank you!! I wasn't planning on trying this, but if it compares to UD Naked foundation, I just might! UD Naked is my HG foundation, something I never thought I would say! :)

  12. So the big question - do these replace your current HG powder/foundation lineup????

  13. I really like ELF Studio tinted moisturizer and I know you have used it as well. Is the Revlon comparable to the ELF at all?

  14. G your review is making me want to pick this up asap! I've been using the Maybelline Dream Matte powder as a setting powder forever - it's pretty good with oilies and not looking too powdery. Do you have any other rec's for setting powders? I saw your Physician's Formula HG, and the NYC option, but anything else besides those? I would like a few options to keep in rotation in case any ever get discontinued, in which case I would be super sad!

  15. Thank you for the review. It sounds awesome! I think I'm going to have to pick up the powder since I'm almost out of my current one.

  16. Settling in pores? Eh, no thanks! I have big pores already so this is a big no-no for me, especially since I use a brush to apply my foundation.

  17. The powder sounds great! Thanks for the review and swatches. ^^

  18. Except for the settling into pores thing, this sounds great to me. I hate the feeling of heavy makeup and usually don't even bother with foundation--in fact, I own none at present! But if I need to get some, now I'll know what to get. Thanks so much for the detailed review :D

  19. Great timing with this review! I've been looking for a pressed setting powder and this might fit the bill for me. I've been considering some options at 3 times the price. I appreciate the photo showing the brush used loaded up with powder and for mentioning your natural inclination to go heavier. It DOES look chalkier in the photo than I prefer but I trust your judgement. I also really really appreciate you showing the ingredients list. I will definitely purchase this powder to try.

  20. I am a fan of light, sheer foundations. Does anyone know how this compares to Nars Sheer Glow and Neutrogena Healthy Skin? Very helpful review!

  21. The powder looks amazing - but if you are fairer than NC20, do you think you would recommend the fair or the light? The sign at CVS showed "Emma Stone wearing Vanilla with light powder" but the powder just looked so dark?

  22. When I saw this, I immediately thought of UD's NAKED Skin foundation. I'm definitely interested in trying this though, so I hope I find it! I'm almost done with my UD foundation & for the same size as this, I'd rather try this for $10 than use another $40. Thanks for the review! :D

  23. I bought these a couple of days ago and wore them today. I'm quite "meh" about both of them.

    I think G's description of the foundation was right on, the coverage of a tinted moisturizer with the finish and performance of a foundation... but I guess I'm spoiled by my WnW TM because I was surprised at just how sheer it is. I put some on.. and then some more.. and then some more.. lol, and it still has very little coverage, just a general evening of skin tone. It does build really well though! LOLOL, no matter how much I layered it never looked cakey. I found it dried really fast, yet it was not an issue because it blends very well. I'm still on the fence about returning it, I want to try it with a different powder first, it could be a nice alternative to TM which always leaves me a bit too "moist" especially by the end of the day. It also does not transfer, which I find is an issue with every TM I have ever tried. It has an "almost" satin finish on my oily skin (with oil control primer), very natural, and it does look nice all day. It also feels very nice and light on the skin, like you have nothing on at all, which is amazing considering the SPF.

    The powder on the other hand is going back for sure. Perhaps it's because G prefers a powder foundation.. I could see this being used as powder foundation because it is really heavy coverage. I applied with a large fluffy brush just lightly tapped into the product and the result was "wow, powder face". It sat on top of the foundation and was very obvious. It does have fantastic staying power, I just checked it after 8 hrs of wear with no touch up and it's still there, in pretty much the same condition as applied. It is also very matte. So on second thought perhaps I will attempt it alone as foundation before I return. It also runs quite dark (so does the foundation, choose a shade lighter than you think!Even though it looks too light it oxidizes almost immediately to a darker shade. It does not continue to darken during the day though.)so if you usually wear light I would go for fair instead. It's not chalky at all, with very little "fallout" when used with a brush. For setting powder I much prefer the CG/Olay, it has similar performance but you cannot even see it, it just smooths everything and sets while remaining virtually invisible.

  24. Tried the foundation with my usual powder today.. it was definitely the Revlon nearly naked powder that was helping it's performance. It did not perform nearly as well, I was shiny and had foundation breakdown around my forehead and nose within a few hours. No better than my WnW TM which is 1/4 the price, and I have several foundations that do not break down like that. It will be returned.

  25. Just wanted to let other fellow Canadians know that WalMarts are carrying this! Found it at my local Toronto Walmart. Btw if your a NC30 w/ not too crazy yellow undertones you can wear Medium Beige.

  26. Ok so I bought medium beige for my NC30 skin and found it a shade too dark and slightly orange-ish. I then tried Natural Beige and it's slight too pink. But when I tried fresh beige (which according to their site would be a warm shade) is still too pink. Does anyone know which shade would work for an NC30 skintone? Thank you!

  27. I tried it and it was Holy Giant pores Batman! Even after trying it with the Smashbox primer, ELF primer, Palladio Herbal primer, and Benefits Porefessional I couldn't make it work. I REALLY wanted a good drugstore alternative to UD'd Naked foundation and the pooling is a deal breaker :(

  28. Hey, I have super sensitive skin and so many liquid foundation break me out. I usually have to use Bare Minerals foundation to keep that from occurring. Do you think this lines would break me out. I don't see anything on it about it not clogging pores??

  29. I just picked up the powder today at Target. It was on sale for $7.49 (originally $10.49) and I used a $2 off Revlon cosmetic Target coupon and a $2 off Revlon face product Manufacturer's coupon (found both in Sunday paper) so, I only paid $3.49! I haven't tried it on my face yet but, I swatched it with my finger and it felt very creamy and the color appeared lighter than in the pan, which is great for my NC15 skin!

  30. Thank you for writing such an in depth review! I've reviewed this on my blog too. Now that I've used it some more I'm starting to think its actually medium coverage when I use my fingers - as in you can see it on my skin. Might also be because the shade I'm wearing is slightly off - I'm wearing nude, which is cool according to revlon and really I would need one shade darker than shell, which is warm, but it is not sold in the UK!

  31. Thanks for the review, going out today to pick up this foundation!

  32. Such a good review!! I reviewed this foundation also but this is so detailed!! Love your blog :)

  33. Thanks for this wonderful review!! I've been eyeing this line for awhile, but can't decide which shade to pick online (they don't sell it in the stores here in Singapore yet!). Will certainly try out the powder!!

  34. I love this foundation. It's so light-weight and easy to blend.


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