I've always found the Suqqu counter quite intimidating. The brand is targeted towards a more mature demographic - the brand concept speaks of "sophistication" and "inner composure" - and I definitely felt like I wasn't polished enough to so much as approach it. When I did muster enough cojones to finally make a purchase (I may have dressed up for the occasion too), it was rather spectacular - it came with their famed gankin massage. I'm generally not a fan of massages, but hmnmnmmm this one... my face has never been so plump and bouncy since. The staff also don white gloves before handling the product, which they do so with a reverence normally reserved for Hermès bags or Harry Winston diamonds.
Back to the product in question. The Extra Rich Cream Foundation promises to be light and long-lasting, while providing moisture and a smooth, full coverage . It's a lot of promises. It also has SPF30 which is kind of standard with most Japanese bases, but it's also the reason why I didn't use it for my engagement shoot - I was worried there might be flashback.
I normally apply it with a buffer brush, like the classic Sigma ones or the Zoeva 104, but a damp beauty blender works great as well. The finish is definitely on the dewy side, but I can usually tone it down with setting powder (lately I've been using NARS Light Reflecting Loose Powder). Coverage is medium, and can be layered to full (although I prefer just using concealer on blemishes instead).
- Star for all seasons. I've used this in -20C and 40C weather, and it has held up beautifully in both cases. It does not cling to dry patches in winter, nor does it slide off the face in summer (although I do set it with powder).
- Colormatch is awesome. Japanese have perfected yellow-toned foundations, and the rest of the world has yet to catch up.
- It's very comfortable to wear; at no point does it feel like I've caked my face in makeup.
- Considerably long-lasting. Even in good ol' humid Singapore, I find that at the end of the work day I still have a bit of coverage left. Of course it does not look exactly like it did that morning, but it fades nicely instead of in patches.
- Probably the most skin-like finish out of all the non-airbrush foundations I've tried.
- Eyewateringly expensive, even more so than other luxury brands like Chanel or Dior. Definitely not a foundation I would purchase blind. Having said that, on a cost-per-wear basis it is of great value for me because it took me more than six months of near-daily use to finish a jar. Also, I finished an entire jar, which is something that cannot be said for the other foundations I've purchased.
- Can be streaky upon application, so I make sure to stipple instead of swipe.
- Extremely limited availability. As far as I know Suqqu is only available in Japan and in the UK, with a couple of counters in Taipei and Bangkok as well. At the moment I'm still trying to figure out how to get a replacement when this jar runs out. T.T
- Shade range is very limited. I found this to be the case for most Japanese brands. I'm in the light-medium range in most Western foundations (around NC25 in MAC), but with Suqqu I'm using one of the darkest shades they offer (003, for reference).
- The packaging, gorgeous as it is, is such a bitch to work with. The plastic lid gets gunky real fast, and if you make the mistake of traveling with it, well,
. I've wasted many, many applications worth of foundation just from decanting and cleaning the goddamned lid, and this is the one foundation I really would hate to waste.