Product Review: Guerlain Terracotta Joli Teint in Light/Clair


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Although I make regular stops at Guerlain counters to sniff some of my favorite fragrances (Après L’Ondée, Nahéma, Chamade…), I’ve consciously ignored the Guerlain cosmetics line for ages. It’s expensive, and it has shiny gold-tone packaging (not my style). I did cave once, for a fancy lipstick (named for Après L’Ondée!), and then I managed to steer away from the collection for another year or two, until I tried Lingerie de Peau and it became my favorite foundation.

Guerlain recently launched Terracotta Joli Teint Beautifying Foundation, “a single formula that combines the perfection of foundation, the beautiful effect of a skincare product, and the sun-kissed radiance of Terracotta.” This product is meant to complement Guerlain’s classic Terracotta line of bronzing face powders and other “sun-kissed” cosmetics.

I don’t normally wear bronzer, but I liked the idea of a lightweight foundation for the summer. Joli Teint is available in five shades, and the lightest shade, Light/Clair, turned out to be the best match for my skin. Here’s a swatch of Light/Clair on my inner arm:


For application (over SPF moisturizer, of course), I’ve been putting a small amount of Joli Teint on the back of my hand, then picking it up and applying it to my face with a Sephora “Airbrush” makeup brush. For me, this product requires a little extra effort—blending, stippling—but the result is worth that additional minute. Joli Teint dries to a sheer, matte finish with light but surprisingly effective coverage. My skin ends up looking even and fresh (but not “dewy,” thank goodness).


Here’s the same swatch of Joli Teint, spread out slightly with a fingertip. Although it looks much darker than my skin here, it actually appears very natural by the time it’s fully blended. My face always turns very slightly darker in the summer, despite my daily use of sunblock, so Light/Clair is an excellent summer alternative to Lingerie de Peau in Beige Clair (#02). And, last but not least, Joli Teint has surprisingly good staying power, unlike most tinted moisturizers, BB creams, and the like.

Joli Teint has a tiare flower fragrance; I happen to like this scent and it fades shortly after application, in any case.

Long story short: a luxurious warm-weather alternative to full-coverage foundation. I’ve used up my sample, and I’m tempted to purchase a full tube.

Guerlain cosmetics are available at the Sephora website, select Sephora locations, and high-end department stores. I recently visited the Guerlain counter at the Saks Fifth Avenue, where Habib was very friendly and helpful. You can contact him by phone at 212-940-2660 or 212-940-4031.


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