Beauty Without Fuss

Monday 8 March 2010

Foundation Week Finale – Liquids

Chanel_VitalumiereI love liquid foundations, and have amassed a fair collection of them over the years. There are very many different formulations, and with liquid foundations, it can be a case of trial and error getting the right formulation for yourself.
There are two main kinds, ones that leave you with a dewy glow, and matte ones – but, of course, there are all kinds of gradations in-between.  Me being a dry-skinned kind of gal, I tend to favour more glowy kinds of foundations over the matte ones, but I’ll have a look at some good examples of both in this post.
Foundations that give you a dewy finish can be heavier in oils, and therefore they’re better for drier, or more mature skins.  My absolute favourite foundation in this category is Chanel Vitalumiere, which I find leaves me with a lovely “glowing” effect, without making it look like I’m either sweaty or greasy.  It last pretty well, too, but the shade range isn’t all that wide (I find the pale shades pretty dark, and they don’t really cater for darker skins at all, which is a shame), but I like the air-free pump bottle, which means no messy spills!
Bourjois 10 hour sleep effect foundation is another good one, but I find it can my my (only slightly) dry skin look a little too shiny, and so I find that setting it with powder takes the edge off that.
Nars Sheer Glow is one that a lot of people swear by, but I found in my recent Nars makeover that it just made me look sweaty, even after a good powdering!  However, if you have really dry skin, it might be a good one to try out.
I’m not the best person to ask about matte foundations, as I find that many of the “oil-free” formulations that abound, like Lancome’s Teint Idole Ultra (which is actually an excellent foundation for greasier-skinned people) suck all the moisture out of my face after a couple of hours and leave me looking a little desiccated.  I also recently tried Bourjois Mineral Matte foundation recently (which is cutely packaged with it’s own tiny kabuki brush) but again, it just dried my skin out that little too much to be comfortable.
So, can dry-skinned people use a matte base without resembling an Egyptian mummy by lunchtime?  Surprisingly, the answer is yes! 
I recently discovered Rimmel’s Stay Matte formulation (okay, I may not have been the first person to ever have bought this one) and I absolutely love it!  Now, the reason I love it is probably because it’s not really as matte as it claims to be.  Personally, I’d describe the finish as a “satin”.  It doesn’t give me as dewy a glow as Vitalumiere, but there is definitely a lovely sheen to my skin when I’m wearing this.  Over the winter, Rimmel Stay Matte has been my default foundation, and currently, it’s the one I use as a benchmark for ALL foundations, it’s that good!  I also purchased a couple of back-ups …
Another one with a great satin, or “semi-matte”, finish is Bourjois Healthy Mix foundation, which I like a lot, but the texture is a bit more liquid than the Rimmel, and I think doesn’t last quite as well.
With all my liquid foundations, I pour a little onto the back of my hand, and dab a flat-topped Kabuki brush into it, and use that to spread the foundation over my trouble spots (nose and T-Zone), then use the slightly denuded brush to blend it over the remainder of my face.  I then use my fingers to add a little more in place of concealer where I need it.  Sometimes, I finish with powder, sometimes I don’t, it depends on what I’m doing for the day.
That said, there’s no real right or wrong way to apply your foundation, the right way is simply the way that works for you.  For my makeovers, I usually use a disposable foundation sponge, but sometimes I use my fingers.  As long as you don’t end up looking like you’re wearing a mask, it’s all good!
What’s your favourite liquid foundation? How do you apply it, and what finish do you like?


  1. ohhhhh...interesting. I think I'll check it out tomorrow when I'm in town x

  2. Vichy flexilift is my current favourite - I never usually buy drugstore brands but in Germany the chemists have testers which makes it easier. I hate all other Vichy products so this is an odd one for me. Perfect colour, good texture, doesn't need powder and comes in a fairly sophisticated glass pump. It's Big Love!

  3. Totally agree about the Sheer Glow - I'm not sure what all the fuss is about?! I wasn't keen at all when the MUA in SpaceNK applied it. I thought I looked like a greasy corpse! Glow my arse...

  4. I'll definitely check out the Rimmel Stay Matte now! I've always heard good things about it, but couldnt be bothered to try it till I read this. :)

  5. Great post... actually the whole series has been wonderful! Can I ask which kabuki you use to apply your liquid foundation. I use one for my mineral foundation but it has never really occured to me to use it for a liquid.


  6. I'm a mac foundation fanatic, weather it's face & body foundation for those rare blemish-free days, studio fix fluid for good coverage, studio sculpt for that sweet gel like consistancy and (for me atleast) dewy finish, or on a night out, the full coverage cream.. or for a day where i don't have time to worry about how i look, i know this will stay on!!
    I have to say i like to mix em up too!
    Oh and another reeeeaaaaly good foundation is sisley's Phyto-Teint Eclat, but it's too expensive to be my one and only at 70€!

    As for application, i used to apply with my fingers, which i'll still do in a hurry, good results :)
    then i tried foam sponges but for a liquid foundation they just absorb waaay too much.
    When i want the perfect result i use my GOSH foundation brush, powder with a flat top kabuki brush for a realy soft focus finish

    i know, i'm a total geek :p


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