There are a multitude of ways in which foundation can be applied to one’s face. I personally am a fan of the beauty blender-style of sponge – I have the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion sponge and I love it. It’s on my ‘forever repurchase’ list of products and I really hope they never stop making it, or some variant of it. But I don’t mind trying new things when they come along – you have to move with the times, right?
So when a Siligel Blender came out of this month’s Glossybox, I was quite excited to try it. It was a very odd product to get. What even is this thing? What’s it made of? How does it work – and does it work at all?
It’s a weird… blob… of silicone. It felt a bit unnerving and put me in mind of something out of Alien, if I’m honest, so I wasn’t really looking forward to trying it on my face. After squidging it around like a stress ball for a bit (which is actually really fun), I decided to stop freaking out about the texture and give it a go.
I tried it with my MAC Studio Fix foundation, which again is on my ‘forever repurchase’ list.
I only tried it on the back of my hand at first, so as not to waste any makeup. The instructions for the blender are to ‘tap and roll’ to put the product on your skin and I felt like all it was doing was sort of smearing things around a bit, because the foundation just slides around the sponge. I did tap and roll, as instructed, and the result was dab marks on the back of my hand. I found myself using my finger to blend out the edges and using more foundation to disguise the streaks.
After my attempt on my hand, I went on YouTube and also had a look at a few beauty blogs to see what other people thought of the blender and to find out if I was even using it properly, which I thought could have accounted for why the finish looked so rubbish. Reviews are mixed – some reviewers love it, some of them had the same ‘what even is this?’ reaction as I did, and one article I found thought it was best used as a stress ball. I had been using it correctly, according to the videos and articles, so I thought I would try it properly on my face.
It was the same result as on my hand – smears, streaks and patches. Plus it took forever to apply the foundation with this tool – I can be done with my entire makeup routine from primer to setting spray in about seven minutes or less (yes I timed myself once) but using the Siligel meant I spent at least five of those sorting out the foundation application because of the streaky finish. It’s not a tool for people who are pushed for time in the mornings, and I think that’s the main reason I won’t be using it. I’m perfectly happy to spend a while doing my makeup, but when I’m rushing out the door because the radio has told me there’s awful traffic or the trains are up the spout, I don’t want to make myself late because I’ve had to spend an extra five minutes sorting out smeary foundation.
I can see the arguments for why people like it. It doesn’t absorb the makeup like a sponge does, so you are wasting less product. But the fact it applied the foundation so streaky, and it takes so long to do so because of the ‘tap and roll’ method, doesn’t really endear it to me. And you actually end up using more product from when you have to go over your face again with another layer of foundation and a different tool to get rid of the streaks and hide the dab marks.
So, it’s not a tool for me. It’s always good to try something different, but I think my Siligel blender is destined for a life as a stress reliever. I’m a little disappointed, because I had heard that silicone blenders were going to be a Thing, and the prospect of not losing foundation to absorption was quite appealing. I know there are other silicone blenders on the market, and I would like to try one eventually, maybe when they have advanced a little more.
But for now, the Siligel goes to the back of the cupboard, and the Real Techniques sponge can take centre stage once again.
(The opinions in this review are mine and mine alone and I have not been paid to advertise any of these products)