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Susannah Frankel: 'For those who’d rather not bother with foundation, buying a pot is sheer hell'


This week, I have been forced to accept that summer is over. With the season of mellow fruitfulness under way, my complexion resembles the skin of an organic pear, a pale greenish-brown one, sadly, not the primrose-yellow variety with the merest hint of a blush – which would be lovely. And so, I find myself in need of what our friends in the beauty industry might describe as a helping hand.

Buying foundation is a challenge for those who love make-up. For those who'd really rather not bother unless they'll frighten the horses without it, it's sheer – or indeed not-so-sheer – hell. I've lost count of the times I've found myself in possession of a foundation that looked perfectly suited to my skin colour at the counter only to step outside and discover I'm orange/American tan/candyfloss-pink and that strangers are laughing at me.

The mission, then, is to discover a make-up base that will a) even out any irregular pigmentation, b) not sit in every wrinkle adding a decade to even the most well-cared for skin and c) actually match that skin as opposed to lending it a radioactive glow.

Regular readers of this column will not be surprised that the fruits of my labours came at a price. Sisley Skinleya Anti-Ageing Lift Foundation is a new formulation courtesy of the purveyor of the finest skincare in the world, in my opinion at least. Since its launch in the summer, it has been hailed as a revolution in make-up, "a soufflé", not just a foundation, which means it must be good, and one that aims to "beautify the complexion and minimise the visible signs of ageing".

Skinleya Foundation might be described as an investment. It costs £110 but is pleasingly generous in size. I put it on with a suitably chic brush – it's easier than it sounds – et voila! My skin is a flawless 'soft rose' although I'm guessing that it won't be long before I fade to 'natural linen', the lightest of shades on offer, and I'll therefore need to buy another precious potful. Still, both beat pale greenish-brown pear.

Susannah Frankel is Fashion Editor of The Independent