Once upon a time I got swept away by the hype on the Ellana Intensive Blend foundation that I took my bareminerals foundation to the Ramp and used it to look for my shade. Turns out I wasn't thorough enough and I bought the wrong shade (Caramel Latte) even though it looked so similar to Golden Medium. After a million years I decided to get their free sample pack because I still wanted to try their foundation out, and because, you know, it's free!
So here's the swatches of the complete Mineral Foundation, Mineral Concealer & Foundation, and the Finishing powders, but really, go get the free samples and see fo yoself!
Cheer (cool light) / Revive (cool medium) / Chai tea latte (cool light) / Almond latte (cool medium light) / Cinammon latte (cool medium)
Cafe Mocha (olive medium light) / Toffee Mocha (olive medium)
Radiant (warm light) / Smile (warm medium) / Cafe Breve (warm fairly light) / French Vanilla Latte (warm light) / Hazlenut Latte (warm medium light) / Caramel Latte (warm medium) / Macchiato (warm deep)
Ahh the warm tones, the cause of my existential crisis. LOL JK, but before I tried these I was so sure I had strong yellow undertones. I thought Macchiato would be the perfect match but it still gave me that weird gray cast I got from Caramel Latte. Desperate, I tried Toffee Mocha and found it to be a better match. Later on I tried the new (at least I think they are) Concealer & Foundation in Smile and that matched me too.
MINERAL FINISHING POWDERS + a concealer/corrector
Awake (buttercream with yellow tones) / Pumpkin Pie (light peach neutral) / Almond Coffee Cream (cool tones) / Espresso Con Panna (warm tones)
I was very confused when I saw that there were shades for the translucent powders when they're supposed to be, well, translucent. More questions came up when I saw that aside from the translucent, there's an oil-absorbing variant with equivalent shades.
So I swatched them, and they're mostly clear so the undertones don't really matter (but pumpkin pie gives my foundation the slightest white cast, and I can use espresso and almond interchangeably. Though to play it safe I'd just get the Sheer Velvet HD Powder (not swatched above for obvs reasons).
Aside from the shades, the translucent ones felt a bit more gritty. Later when I blended out the swatches I saw that the translucent had subtle shimmer running through it.
See? Super purdy subtle shimmer.
Anyways, with the help of the samples I found my matches (Toffee Mocha, Smile, and revive) and so far I really like the translucent powders. Welp, there goes my wallet. This just go to show that samples are beneficial to both the consumer and the brand.