Rouge 'n' Apples

Foundation Series: The Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation

Hello everyone! And happy Friday! I hope you’re all ready for the weekend. We had such a sunny Friday here; what a blessing! To start with, today it’s a month since I started rougenapples! Thanks to everyone who has dropped by so far, I’ve already met some beautiful people, from all over planet Earth, which is truly amazing! To add to that, today, I’m introducing a series of posts that will hopefully be helpful to my readers: The Foundation Series. This is basically what it implies: a set of reviews on, newly released or not, foundations which I’ve tested. As a foundation junkie, believe me, I’ve tried many and I’m still on the hunt for good, new ones. I’ve already reviewed  the Armani Power Fabric Foundation, the Chanel Le Teint Ultra Tenue and the Estee Edit Skin Glowing Balm. Today, I wanted to speak to you about the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation which I put to the test these last few days. A comparison and review of three different stick foundations will follow, hopefully, next week.

Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation packaging close up

Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation

Attica is one of the biggest department stores in my country and oh, how lucky, I found myself there on when they had a 25% off all cosmetics! I noticed,  some brands haven’t supplied the market here with their most recent releases, but some others have done. The Tom Ford counter was relatively quiet for once, so I thought this to be a great opportunity to try a couple of foundations. Quite unexpectedly (and I’ll tell you more next week in my stick foundation comparison post), I decided to go for the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation in shade 4.5 (Ivory). A close to perfect match for me now.

Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation in shade 4.5 Ivory swatch on medium toned skin

Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation in shade 4.5 Ivory

a few words about the ToM ford traceless perfecting foundation

Why go for a stick would be the question. The make-up artist suggested that this would suit my needs more, even if I told her that I don’t really trust stick foundations. Insisting that I didn’t want a stick, we then went on to try the Tom Ford Traceless Perfecting Foundation which I’ve read and heard lots about. To my surprise, this looked very powdery on me!

I was quite disappointed to be honest, as this foundation not only gets great reviews, but it’s reputed to be fabulous and what I saw on my face was anything but traceless! Shopping for make-up in Athens on a sunny day is amazing, as any colour mismatch or textural issue immediately becomes obvious once you step outside. The Traceless Perfecting Foundation looks very powdery in the store and completely unnatural in the sun light on me. Let me remind you what my skin is like though:

my skin type

My skin is combination. I get oily on and around my T-zone during the day and I have a couple of drier areas on my face too. My major concern is spots. I have sensitive skin and many products can break me out, I think more than the average person. These break outs can give me marks that are very difficult to get rid of. I’m using some products that help me with my acne, but these tend to make my skin more dry, so combination to dry with spots describes my current situation. This can change and very much depends on not only the products I use, but also the weather and how much I’m travelling.

the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation

After the Tom Ford make-up artist saw my reaction to the Traceless Perfecting Foundation, she suggested trying the stick to see whether I liked its finish at least. The marvellous thing about being on holiday is I have time! So, no reason not to go with her suggestion. And, guys, I loved the finish it gave me. I cannot explain how much! The colour match of 4.5 Ivory was really good (close to Bobbi Brown 4, Natural). It’s a yellow based shade. I’d like it to be even more yellow based to be honest, but let’s not beat around the bush! I tried some other foundations by other brands, on the same day, and no luck. It’s a good match in harsh sunlight, so I’m happy.

The finish is luminous. Not dewy, thankfully. Nicely luminous. It feels creamy and nourishing on my face. It successfully evens out my skin tone. I’d say it’s a medium coverage foundation. You can build it to full coverage but when I did that it felt heavier on my face. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a heavy-weight foundation at all. It’s light but not as lightweight as, say, Power Fabric, or Dior Forever. Saying that, it’s a stick foundation, so I was expecting it wouldn’t be the most lightweight of all. I’m happy it feels as light as it does on me, while offering me custom coverage to suit my needs. It’s super portable, super blendable and I also love it for that!

Me with no make-up on. Can we take a moment to appreciate this fabulously massive pimple on my forehead? Sniff… I think my skin went nuts after I tried the Estee Edit Glowing Balm, so I hope it balances itself out soon! Photo taken indoors in daylight on a gloriously sunny day

Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick Shade 4.5 on medium toned skin close up on face

Me with one layer of the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation in shade 4.5 Ivory. Daylight, on a sunny day, picture taken indoors

Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick Shade 4.5 on medium toned skin close up on face

Me wearing one layer of the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation. In this picture I used a bit more on my spots and under eye area, as this foundation can also be used as a concealer

I hope that the pictures above give you some idea as to how this foundation currently works on me. These days, my eyes feel quite dry, so I have to use my glasses all the time. Although the foundation covered that red pimple well (see description in photo one) and it also covered some freckles, it did not cover the marks left from my glasses. But no problem there really, these disappeared later. This means, I quite like it as a concealer too. Some reviews say it’s quite heavy for the area under the eyes. For me, it’s ok. But I apply *just* enough and won’t attempt to layer it under my eyes. Less is more there.

There are only two question marks I have over this foundation. First, it does seem to concentrate in the dry areas around my spots, especially on my chin. If this is such a great foundation for drier skin types, why would it do that. And second, when I swipe it over my face it seems to emphasise my pores. Thankfully, I don’t have a problem with massive pores etc. and can smooth it out nicely. However, I can see ladies with bigger pores not loving this.

Here is what this foundation looked like after the rest of my make-up was finished:

Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation shade 4.5

Me wearing the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation as a base and concealer

That’s a simple make-up I did in 15 minutes before going down town. My blush and highlighter both applied wonderfully on top of this foundation.

How about longevity? Well, I refuse to powder my face in Greece. It’s too much make-up on a sunny day (my personal preference!), so I will report back on longevity with powder when I’m in London. Without powder, I get a bit shiny after 4 hours. The foundation also starts fading in my chin (and tip of the nose… sigh) around the four hour mark. Other than that, it lasts a good 6 hours before I need to touch up, if I blot once. I suspect with powder it will last longer. It’s not the most long wear foundation I’ve owned, but it’s definitely pretty good.

All in all, I like the Tom Ford Traceless Stick Foundation, I just wish it lasted a bit more on my chin and around those drier spots. I’ve worn it three days in a row now and it hasn’t broken me out either, which is a bonus for me! It’s a very expensive foundation – you pay £66 for 15g. It’s available in Selfridges and John Lewis. For swatches of all shades, have a look at the Beauty Professor’s site.

As mentioned earlier, I will make a post comparing three stick foundations, hopefully end of next week, so you can compare and contrast some of the options you have in the market, if you’re thinking about getting a stick foundation.

Is there another Tom Ford foundation you love and think I should try? Have you tried the Traceless Stick Foundation before? Any thoughts?

Enjoy your weekend and speak soon!








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  1. The Makeup Train February 25, 2017

    I’m happy to read a TF review, because I’ve been looking more and more at high end brands. Have you tried their Brow Sculptor? It’s so lovely!
    The Makeup Train recently posted…NickaK True Matte Lipstick in Jazzberry Jam

    • rougenapples February 25, 2017 — Post Author

      I haven’t tried the TM Brow Sculptor, mostly because when I let looked at it, I found it similar to the one from Bobbi Brown. Only Bobbi’s is less expensive. Speaking of brows Charlotte Tilbury has some nice products too, might be worth investigating too :). Hope you’re having a great weekend!

  2. stylefrontier February 25, 2017

    wow really love the result on you!
    style frontier

  3. Elena February 17, 2018

    Hi Eleni! How wonderful I’ve just found your blog as I was searching for Tom Ford stick foundation reviews:) I’ll read your other posts as I’m a makeup aficionado :))

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