Not So Happy with Bourjois’ Happy Light Foundation and Matte Serum Primer

Bourjois’ Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation has been a favourite of mine ever since it was launched a couple of years ago. In fact, it became my Holy Grail of foundations at some point, snatching to stay on the spot with Rimmel’s Match Perfection. When I heard on the blogging grapevine that Bourjois has come up with a new foundation called the Happy Light, I was excited to check it out at my local Priceline. And then I forgot that that part of the grapevine was from the UK and they get the good stuff first!

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Happy Light Matte Serum Primer

So I waited and waited. When Priceline finally stocked the Happy Light foundation, I pounced like a ninja and picked up a bottle. Since I was already there, I also picked up a bottle of the Happy Light Matte Serum Primer to try out. It’s been a few weeks and I thought it’s a good time for me to share with you what I think of the foundation and the primer.

By the way, I’m making some slight changes to the way I review base makeup like foundation and BB-goodness-knows-what-double-alphabet creams to a simple point form review in terms of shade, texture, fragrance, finish on skin, coverage and longevity. I find that it makes it easier for people to read and understand than having to go through paragraphs of descriptions. What do you think? Would you prefer it too?

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation

Shade: 52 Vanilla (neutral to peachy undertones). Also available in 51 Light Vanilla, 53 Light Beige, 54 Beige
Texture: Light and runny, similar to the Healthy Mix Serum
Fragrance: Artificial floral fragrance, not as strong as the Healthy Mix Serum (although I still prefer the latter’s scent)
Finish: Dries quickly and leaves a semi dewy finish on the skin
Coverage: Light to medium
Longevity: Lasts for many hours without leaving drag marks or streaks on facial lines. Looks even better on the skin as the hours go by.

When the Happy Light was launched, word on said blogging grapevine was that this is supposed to replace the popular Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation and that the latter will be discontinued. I’ve checked with the brand and can confirm that the news is false. Both products will continue to sit on Bourjois stands.

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation Ingredients

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation ingredients

Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation Ingredients

Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation ingredients (click to enlarge)

Having said that, the Happy Light is very similar to the Healthy Mix Serum. The only difference is in the lighter fragrance, that the finish is a bit more dewy than the Healthy Mix Serum and the coverage is slightly less. Other than that, the difference is pretty hard to tell.

One thing though, the Happy Light did break me out in tiny whiteheads. I don’t get them every time I have the foundation on but I have to say, I do get it 3 out of 5 times. The Healthy Mix Serum never broke me out, not even once. Hmm.

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation

Funny story: one day, after I applied the foundation, I freaked out a little because I thought the foundation has gone bad. When I applied it on my face, my face became ORANGE! I lamented to LeGeeque that the Happy Light must have gone wonky or something because it was all right before. I decided to try it again a few days later; lo and behold, it was back to normal. Then I remembered that that day when my face was supposedly orange, it was a dark and gloomy day, and I had the warm lights in my room on. Hence, my “orange” face. Ooooops. :P

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation Swatch

Oh and one thing I should mention, don’t assume that the foundation shades are going to be the same across the board. I’m a 52 Vanilla on the Healthy Mix Serum. I purchased the 52 on the Happy Light but it’s actually a shade or two darker than my skin tone. I was in a bit of a hurry when I picked these up so I didn’t test it out properly on my jawline. Bugger. Anyway, it’s also strange because my bottle is labelled No 52 Light Beige, when 52 should have been Vanilla. So did I actually get the 52 or the 53, which is supposed to be the Light Beige? Did anyone else encounter the same issue?

I do like the Happy Light foundation but to be honest, I’m happier to stick to the Healthy Mix Serum. At least I wouldn’t have to deal with extra whiteheads on my face that I certainly don’t need.

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Happy Light Matte Serum Primer

Bourjois Matte Serum Primer

I’ve used the Happy Light primer with the Happy Light foundation and with other foundations/BB creams and I can say … meh. It’s not bad, but not great either.

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Happy Light Matte Serum Primer

The Happy Light primer leaves a matte finish on the skin. When used with the Happy Light foundation, it makes the foundation almost semi matte but not fully matte. When there’s a primer and foundation under the same umbrella, the common assumption is that you use them together. Unfortunately, I can’t use them together because it makes my foundation flake and peel badly on my skin. However, when I use the primer with another foundation, there’s no flaking.

Bourjois Happy Light Matte Serum Primer Swatch

Having used the Happy Light primer and foundation together, I didn’t notice the foundation lasting any longer on my skin than it would on its own. It doesn’t have good oil control on my skin either; my T-zone oils up after a couple of hours.

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation Before and After

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation Before and After

All in all, I have to say I was slightly disappointed in the Happy Light foundation and more so the primer. I was expecting better results with at least the foundation. It’s awfully similar to the Healthy Mix Serum but it does come with a whitehead-y cost for me. I’ll just stick to what works for me and that’s the good ol’ Healthy Mix Serum. It smells nicer too. :)

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation and Happy Light Matte Serum Primer

Bourjois Happy Light Foundation retails at AU$29.00 for 30ml and the primer at AU$21.00 for 15ml. They’re available at Priceline pharmacies nationally.

What I like about them: Lightweight, natural finish on the skin, not cakey. Primer leaves a matte finish, which is helpful for those with oily/combination skin

What I do not like about them: Foundation breaks me out at times, too similar to the Healthy Mix Serum (happier to stay with the latter). The combination of the primer and foundation flakes badly on my skin (combo with other foundations is not a problem), doesn’t make any difference to the longevity of foundations/BB creams.

Have you tried the Bourjois Happy Light foundation and/or primer? What did you think? Did you like it?

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16 comments… add one

  1. LeGeeque

    Thanks for saving me pennies!!! :D :D :D

    1. Tine

      Happy to! ;)

  2. gio

    I’ll skip these, thanks for the review.
    gio recently posted..5 Skincare Habits That Can Damage SkinMy Profile

    1. Tine

      My pleasure, Gio. It’s okay but not great.

  3. maddy

    I was literally just in Priceline, purchasing a new liquid foundation and came across the Happy Light. All I was thinking was which is the one that Tine likes, thank goodness I chose the Gel Foundation instead!

    1. Tine

      Hahahaha aww glad I have that much clout over foundations! Kakakaka! Hope you like the Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation. It’s still one of my favourites.

  4. dom

    dooood. The Singapore SAs said that it replaced Healthy Mix Serum, and it’s NOWHERE *gasp* to be found. Every single counter now has Happy Light and I am not happy. Bah. Thanks for your review and I’m glad it didn’t exactly turn you orange, because it swatched a nice orange on me – then again, I picked my usual 53 shade and I’m thinking maybe I’m supposed to be a 52, per your review?

    ANYWAY. Not like I am going to buy a foundie anytime soon, I think. I have about 5 foundies and my color stays put all year round because I am living in the humid tropics…but I could do with another foundie just to play with anyway. ;p

    1. Tine

      That’s strange. Could it be that Singapore is pulling out the Healthy Mix Serums? I heard from PB that they’re replacing the Healthy Mix Serums with the Happy Light so I had to check with the PR here to confirm. Nope, both are remaining on the Australian market, thank goodness. I’m just not feeling the Happy Light. I went back to Priceline to check the labelling of the foundations. It’s the same; calls No 52 Light Beige when 53 is supposed to be Light Beige.

  5. Bijin Blair

    Tine, can you post up the ingredient lists please? It’d be helpful if we can compare them side by side to single out the culprit causing your whiteheads?

    1. Tine

      I’ve updated the post with the list of ingredients for both foundations. Sorry the one for the Healthy Mix Serum is so tiny and a bit blurry. I don’t like it when the stretch the ingredients across the entire bottle; makes it hard to read and photograph! :)

  6. Kai

    I was about to get these but after your mention of whiteheads..uhmmm… thanks for the review!

    1. Tine

      It may not give you whiteheads like it gave me ;) I don’t know, I still very much prefer the Healthy Mix Serum. This one’s just meh.

  7. Anita

    Aww it’s a shame it broke you out! I actually love this foundation…aaaaalmost as much as healthy mix but not quite as much :)

    I bought the illuminating primer and it looks shit underneath the happy light foundation but it works really well with other foundations..oddly!

    I just put a review of this up on my YouTube :P
    Anita recently posted..Festive Manicure Series – Look #2My Profile

    1. Tine

      I know, I watched your video on the Happy Light! So glad it works for you. It’s okay, I have way too many foundations to use anyway :P

  8. Michelle

    I heard they are not going to make Health Mix Serum anymore :( is that true??

    1. Tine

      I’m not sure about other countries because I did hear about this rumour but I checked with the Australian Bourjois PRs and they confirmed that the Healthy Mix Serum will still be available in Australia.

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