Despite having tried approximately a million foundations since first slapping on a Max Factor base at 13, I’ve never found The One. In fact, more often than not I find myself mixing pools of different ones to get just the right consistency and finish.
These reviews therefore come with a side note: before you think the bases you own are rubbish and rush out to buy something new, try mixing things up a bit. If your current one is too drying or the coverage is a bit too dense, add a drop of serum. If you need to warm the colour to match your tan or take it down a notch as summer ebbs away, mix and mix some more. If you find it looks flat when on, a drop of highlighter will add luminescence. If all that still doesn’t work, it may be time to buy something new. Here are six to tempt you //
Suqqu Extra Rich Cream Foundation in 102 (available here later this month) //
The Good / Lord above, this is a cracking foundation. A blend of oils and pigments (no powder is in the mix at all), this seems to fuse with the skin, finishing creamy -not sheeny, not flat. People who have dry skin tell me it doesn’t settle into scalier patches, those who are oilier than me tell me it doesn’t slip and slide around or disappear mysteriously. On my combination skin, it sits uniformly throughout the day – quite the triumph indeed.
The Bad / It’s Suqqu, so cheap it ain’t. Also, the glass pot is beautiful but a bit of a fiddly nuisance as you need to use a little scoop (Suqqu provide this) to avoid putting bacteria-ridden fingers in the foundation. It also wouldn’t travel well.
The Good / This twisty stick comes in a huge variety of colours and is easy peasy to apply – just stroke directly onto the face and then blend with either fingers or a brush (Hourglass and I recommend the latter). It doesn’t need to be powdered, and in my experience running over spots again with it is sufficient to cover them up.
The Bad / The coverage is FULL – no freckles, blushes or skin tone shows through it once on. If you’re nifty with a brush, you can buff this away slightly, but I’d just advise steering clear unless you like a serious dose of base.
The Good / It comes in a massive selection of colours, is water-based so won’t clog up skin, and it is very subtle – i.e. it is the ideal base if you’ve battled to get your acneic skin under control and now just want to throw a veil over it to make everything look even.
The Bad / I suppose I’d say the sheerness here – you’ve got to be happy to show your skin if you are going for this one. If, however, you like a comforting blanket of make-up, this is not for you.
The Good / Like all LRP, this is affordable and clever, combining their spot-busting, redness-reducing and dark spot-attenuating effeclar formula with pigment.
The Bad / In my experience, there isn’t quite enough pigment if you’re a spottykins like me; I had to apply copious concealer on afflicted patches which I felt must have ruined the spot-decongesting action.
The Good / This has excellent skincare chops, combining potent antioxidants with a high SPF and hydrating agents. It provides enough coverage to even out skin tone if applied once and builds nicely if you go in with a second coat.
The Bad / … Though there’s only so far it will go – I needed concealer. Also, the shade range isn’t brilliant.
The Good / The foundation itself is a joy. Long-wearing, though still luminous once on, it also suits most skin types (I wouldn’t apply it to the very dry).
The Bad / The applicator isn’t ideal. The idea is that the product is dispensed from an opening in the sponge and said sponge then distributes the foundation on your face. Only it doesn’t really as it’s too firm so when wiped removes a lot of foundation and if dabbed looks mottled. You need to use your fingers as a rule, which for me entirely undermines the whole design.