Friday, March 30, 2012

The Big Issue: Foundations

Hello everyone :) !
As makeup addicts, we know there are many different brands of eyeshadows, liners, etc. that are pretty great, and even if sometimes we encounter bad quality eyeshadows, we know most do a decent job, even if its a cheap brand. Mascara-wise, I think most separate and lengthen a little bit the lashes, but few of them are really amazing and holy grail products, but even though, you can own hundreds of mascaras, and none will make your lashes look WORSE. 

The only product I think is more extreme is foundation. You can either LOVE a foundation, or downright HATE IT. I see no middle ground, even if you try some foundations you wouldn't normally use, you still love something about them. And I believe most of us want similar things from our foundations, even if some of us want matte or dewy finishes, full or light coverage, powder, liquid, mousse, gel texture...

But what you want is that the final result is natural, not cakey at all, beautiful and that makes your skin glow. And that it STAYS that way, so it doesn't oxidize or melt away.

I own three foundations (at the moment, I threw out previous ones I didn't use at all and didn't like either):

(L to R: BodyShop Extra Virgin Minerals Powder, BodyShop Oil Free Balancing FoundationNars Sheer Glow
(My foundations are pretty messed up, I'm sorry. But on-the-go,
it's quite difficult to put on foundation without messing them up a little, right?)

One of them is (was) my holy grail foundation: NARS Sheer Glow, in Montblanc. But lately, I decided that this sat too much on top of my skin and it wore off after a couple of hours, because of my oily skin, I didn't want that, even though I love the glow it gave to my skin. So if you're trying to look for some coverage, and you have combination skin, or dry skin, this foundation will work wonders for you. It doesn't cling on my dry patches, which is something I really appreciate from a foundation, and it just delivers GLOW. (And you guys know I love my glow.)

After that, I bought two BodyShop foundations, one was a mineral powder foundation (Extra Virgin Minerals with SPF 15, which was 20€) and a matte "liquid" foundation (Oil Free Balancing Foundation SPF 15). My initial idea was to use the liquid foundation and use the mineral powder as a finishing powder.

 (L to R: BodyShop Oil Free Balancing Foundation; Nars Sheer Glow; Real Techniques Stippling brush)
(I  apply them both with my RT Stippling)

I have ended up ditching any hope of using correctly the Oil Free Balancing Foundation, because it dries INSTANTLY, and it cakes A LOT on me. It's way too matte to look natural, so even if this stays for hours on my skin, I don't think it makes my skin look beautiful, fresh or anything. It just looks dull and matte. The shade range is not good at all, and the lightest color was still too orangey and dark for me. It accentuates any bump you might have on your skin, or any dry patch, so I wouldn't recommend this to acne prone skins, or dry skins. I actually wouldn't recommend this to anyone, if I'm honest.

I'm in shade 04.

You can practically see the mud-like, mask-like consistency of this when blended downwards,
which dries into a sort of waxy mask. [Sucks!]

Comparison between top (Nars Sheer Glow, lightly applied) and bottom (BS Oil Free Balancing, blended)
(You can definitely see the top foundation camouflages pores and lines, 
while the BodyShop one just makes them more obvious!)

On the other hand, my Extra Virgin Minerals Powder has worked wonders for me. The coverage is really light, and so you definitely need to use concealer under your eyes and on blemishes, but this gives the most amazing finish ever. I think my shade is also a little bit darker (nothing that you can really notice at all) so it also makes me look bronzed. I can't use it as a finishing powder, but it evens out your skin beautifully, it gives a really natural sheen to your face, it doesn't accentuate dry patches, and just looks NATURAL. It gives the effect of your skin being tanned and glowy, but not greasy at all. I just fell in love with this powder. It does absolutely everything I wanted it to, without full coverage, but when my skin is looking good, this is the foundation powder I use to make it look EVEN BETTER.

Tap some onto the lid, like the TINIEST amount possible, and then brush it softly with
a kabuki brush, such as mine. [Perfection!]

I'm in shade 205 rose vanilla,
a little bit darker than my skin, but doesn't look orangey at all, 
only beautifully and glowy tanned skin.

Right now, NARS Sheer Glow has too much coverage for my liking, so EVMP I think this will be a great alternative, specially for spring and summer! With a kabuki brush, you just put it on, and it's a breeze, there's no blending needed, just a little powdering and you're done! 

Bottom line
I love my NARS Sheer Glow as much as the next girl, and it has definitely been there when I was in need of some SERIOUS coverage, to look air brushed and beautiful. But my skin is better now, and packing it with foundation will only make matters worse, right? So I think that the mineral powder foundation will be an excellent alternative for me, so that my skin can breathe.

On the other hand, if you need coverage and a beautiful foundation, then I CAN'T stress enough: NARS Sheer Glow! NARS Sheer Glow! NARS Sheer Glow! NARS Sheer Glow!
MUFE HD Foundation I heard is also really good, but I haven't tried it on myself, and don't know anyone who wears it, so I can't recommend you something that I have not previously tried out on myself or at least, a friend. And there are many others you can try out, hopefully you'll find the perfect match for you!

I can go on and on about foundations, so I hope this post wasn't too long and boring, guys!

Do you own any REALLY AMAZING foundation? (Or would you rather keep it a secret?) Do you have any kind of oily, combination or dry skin and you find that there's this one product that solves all of your problems? 

Any question, ladies? Post a comment below!



  1. Have you tried MAC's Matchmaster foundation? Judging from what I've read from this post, I think you might really like it... It gives a natural matte finish with medium-to-full coverage and it looks really natural on the skin (e.g. not cakey).

    As mentioned on my blog, my favourite foundation is MAC's Studio Fix Powder -- it's very matte and powdery when it goes on, but because I have such oily skin, the foundation ends up looking more glowy and smooth like a liquid foundation. No one ever believes I'm only wearing a powder foundation. :P

    1. I actually haven't tried ANY MAC foundation yet, but I do have combination skin, so maybe I should try MAC's Studio Fix Powder! Oh, by the way, what is your opinion on the Studio Fix concealer? I was thinking about buying it, either that one or the Bobbi Brown concealer. So many decisions to make! :(

      Anyway, thank you very much for commenting! :D