Shu Uemura, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways… 6

Stage Performer Instant-Glow Immediate Radiance Skin Perfecting Cream

I debated with myself for the longest time before splurging on this baby.

After having seen the rave reviews it has garnered, I just had to try it for myself.

“Japan’s notorious sweltering summer is just around the corner,” I told myself. Indeed, as soon as one leaves the air conditioning one begins to sweat – this is not good news for makeup. The stickiness and humidity prevent any evaporation of perspiration whatsoever and the relentless heat is infernal. This is the time of year when my love of Japan goes soaring out of the window, only to return with more temperate climes. (Sorry for going off on a tangent, let’s get back to business)

You may understand now my hesitation in the purchase.

“But,” I thought, “if I’m spending all of my time in the air conditioning, surely that will suck all moisture, and by default life, out of my skin. We can’t have that!”

It was decided. I would take the plunge.

The first thing I noticed was the smell. I really, really liked it. I can’t put my finger on what it smells like exactly, but it’s very nice, and not overpowering. I think you may know by now that I love putting scented products (that don’t irritate sensitive skin) on my face.

The consistency is thicker than anything I have used for a loooong time; it is a thick cream (which is nice as too much won’t accidentally spurt out of the tube).

After smoothing it on, I waited for a few moments, ready to be amazed.

I’m not entirely sure what I was expecting, but it was something super unrealistic, along the lines of Cate Blanchett’s ethereal Galadriel glow. That is not what it does. I don’t think there is any product in the world that could do that, otherwise Cate would have bottled and sold it a long time ago!

While my skin did look dewy, I didn’t notice that much more radiance than usual. This is probably due to the fact that it delivers a subtle sheen that catches the light rather than megawatt shine to the skin (which is a very good thing), and also because I layered it over my sunscreen (La Roche-Posay Uvidea XL), which leaves skin looking well moisturized anyway. I think if I were to use it over regular moisturizer or sunscreen, or bare skin even, the results would be more appreciable.

I did, however, adore the fact that it made my skin as soft and silky smooth as the proverbial baby’s bum. I can’t remember my skin ever having felt like that before. It was fabulous. I had to stop myself from touching my face all the time because people around me thought I was a freak – I could see them inching away from me from the corner of my eye.

I do not regret the purchase and will certainly keep using it, as I do like this product, but will save it for special occasions due to the price tag.

Perhaps the onset of the harsh Japanese summer was not the best time or place to try this out, but I simply could not wait until winter. The temperatures won’t start falling until October! That’s months away! I should mention, at this point, that patience is not one of my virtues (and it often leads to my downfall).

A word on the photos – It was a little bit hard to get nice photos of the subtle sheen that weren’t blurry with my phone’s camera, but, as always, the best thing to do before buying anything is of course to go to your nearest Shu counter and try it out yourself to see if you like it before splashing the cash.

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