I started wearing foundation at around 15. Every grown up I knew told me it would damage my skin, that it would suffocate, clog, and generally make it a less glowing place. I couldn’t have cared less – I had spots, foundation covered spots, I didn’t want my spots on display, and that was that.
Turns out, they were utterly wrong about foundation damaging skin. While most formulas do nothing good for the skin, many dermatologists have since told me that the barrier of base offers some protection to skin if you live in a city where pollution is rife, or if you’ve been a bit slapdash with SPF (though, obvs, I’m firmly in the daily SPF camp), and that if you’re spotty, knowing you’re wearing foundation can stop you touching your skin and that this is undeniably a good thing.
(But this is not cut and dried by any means – Debbie Thomas, for example, has cautioned that while foundation is often fine, choosing one that doesn’t bother your skin is essential and recommends Oxygenetix to clients as it has an aloe vera base that reduces bacteria and irritation.)
They had a point on the glow thing, though – foundations 15 years ago were not what they are today, and the three I had on rotation covered both spots and the natural, teenage luminescence of my skin, making my face look mask-like.
Now, teenagers – and anyone wishing to save a penny – are bloody lucky. They have things that don’t cost the earth but do make skin look delightful and even treat it to some skincare like Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation and Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation. They also have access to tonnes of internet wisdom that suggests that a foundation can actually benefit skin, a movement which I have been wholly behind for years and which Eve Lom, Suqqu, and Perricone MD – to add but a few more premium examples -do so well.
bareMinerals want to take that ‘good for skin’ thing a step further. Their imminent launch, bareMinerals BarePro Performance Wear Liquid Foundation, was almost called ‘The Facial Foundation,’ as they were so keen on hammering home the skin treatment aspect of it.
Let’s start there with this review. Containing exfoliants, moisturising agents, and an SPF 20, if you have any qualms about wearing foundation, this may well be what you’re looking for. As well as caring for you skin, it is customisable, offering with one pump a unifying veil, with two a little more coverage, and with three or four a respectable, fuller base that still doesn’t zap the life out of skin (though do set with powder if you’re going for more as I find no foundation can resist moving into wrinkles if you have enough of it on).
My verdict after using it for a month? I’m a firm fan. It comes in loads of colour options (I think 30, if my memory serves me correctly), it doesn’t slip around my face unduly and I find it easy to apply less where I don’t need much (say, on my cheeks), and then more on areas of concern like my chin. I also like the finish enormously – it looks creamy and glowing, and I only powder where absolutely needed because I love my skin to look on the radiant side and don’t need powder to make this one stick around.
Also worth noting is that I’ve recently started exercising properly – more on which to come in a separate post – and, as I work out on the way to or from work, I’ve been wearing this during my sessions and have noticed that while I would usually suffer from a hell of a lot of spots as a result, my skin has remained resolutely calm.
Other notes before you buy? It oxidises ever so slightly, so will darken once on. I’d go into a shop to try it, or would order a shade lighter if buying online. Also, it comes with a lovely brush that mimics a huge finger, which you can stroke it on with – but you don’t need to buy that at all – I’ve found it looks best massaged onto skin with fingers (see me doing that here in an InStyle Wedding Tutorial).