when testing a new foundation, i almost always look for the same combination of features. in short, i love a finish that flawlessly covers all of my hyperpigmentation and redness without looking like stage makeup. it has to go on quickly, easily (i’m not one for a lot of effort) and stay all day in a semi-matte finish that won’t get shiny or greasy. color matching is also key! it can be tough to find the right shade in a lot of foundation lines and i often end up with something that’s just a touch to pink or too yellow.
the generous team at cover fx offered to send me their latest release and they even color-matched my skin tone from a recent photo. the formula is a true cream (almost a hybrid between a concealer and foundation) and comes in a compact. i’ve been starting light and building coverage using this brush with fantastic results. the coverage is not too cakey or heavy and it sits really nicely on my skin without irritating it in the least. acne scars and redness are fully covered and it stays matte all day. (although, the true test will be in summer’s wicked humidity. dc winters don’t really challenge my oily skin too much.)
the shade range on total cover is seriously impressive, with 28 shades for ladies who are the fairest porcelain to the deepest rich ebony, with neutral, pink, or golden undertones.
if you’re in the market for a foundation that gives medium-to-full, buildable coverage, this is definitely my new favorite. you can visit sephora for an expert color match or buy online for $42.
on a morning like this, i need my under eye concealer to be like eight hours of sleep plus eight glasses of water. (we celebrated the engagement of some friends last night and i might have overindulged on the sparkling pinot grigio.) i also like the consistency to be thick (like spackle!) and for it to blend seamlessly with my foundation. it goes without saying that it also has to cover dark circles flawlessly and not wander throughout the day.
since i’ve got to look bright eyed and bushy tailed at a work event today, i’m reaching for it cosmetics bye bye under eye – because as far as under eye concealers go, this one is just plain incredible. it’s thick but blends seamlessly (i use my fingers and a hyperactive patting motion to do the job) and it covers like a dream. most importantly, it takes eyes from sad to shining in seconds. when i’m done, dark circles look like they’ve been erased, puff is diminished and all is left looking bright and alert.
on top of the amazing super smooth coverage, bye bye also claims to treat your fine lines (with hydrolyzed collagen, vitamin c, and vitamin a). i can’t really back that up, but even the thought of it laying down some sort of treatment while it makes me look like a well-rested beauty is good enough for me.
if you ever have the kind of morning when what you really need is a tiny miracle, might i encourage you to grab a tube of bye bye under eye? it’s $24 at beauty.com and considering how little you need of this stuff to make a big impact, i’m going to bet it will last you a lifetime (or at least until the next best thing in eye concealer comes along).
combination skin can be so tricky. along with the occasional (or constant) breakout, skin that’s tight and dry after washing has a tendency to turn oily in the afternoons. it can be so frustrating to leave the house looking great, only to return at the end of the day to eyeshadow that has disappeared and a dewy look that’s just not really appropriate in november. to keep things more matte, i have adopted a product introduced to me by the lovely nicole. make up for ever’s hd microfinish powder is a godsend for anyone who suffers from shine – whether it be in one specific area (nose, t-zone) or generally all over. i keep to nicole’s advice of using a big fluffy brush and applying very sparingly (otherwise things end up looking far too heavy).
it instantly sets your look in place, but the real magic is in the difference that you’ll see at the end of the day: skin looks fresh, healthy, and far less shiny. the translucence mattifies without leaving you looking dull or flat, it gives a soft, beautiful finish and provides an invisible layer of perfection. this powder doesn’t change the color of your foundation and is ideal over both powders and liquids. i like to apply it with the make up for ever hd kabuki brush, sweeping it on after my foundation, but before mascara and blush. this duo is so worth the spend.
as a side note, i was really excited to see that the coordinating kabuki brush came with its own little zip pouch – how great for taking it on the go? sadly, said little zip pouch lives in a drawer, because one morning application is really all that i need.
make up for ever hd microfinish powder ($18 – $32) and the make up for ever hd kabuki brush ($40) are both available at sephora.
i love a drugstore discovery and this one comes courtesy of my friend lindsay. foundation is probably one of the toughest products to nail down at a drugstore, but covergirl’s tone rehab is department store quality goods at a very nice price point.
the formula mixes a creamy foundation with a hydrating serum (perfect as we move towards cooler temps) and the result is pure gold. i have been applying it with it cosmetics dual airbrush foundation concealer brush finding that the silky texture absolutely glides onto skin, light as a feather, feeling just like skincare.
coverage is pretty customizable (although I’m not sure if we can attribute that mainly to the foundation itself or the brush) so you can apply sparingly for a light finish or build for a more medium one. after one overall application, i use the bottom of the it cosmetics brush to do some spot concealing. when i’m done, my skin is the best i’ve seen it in a long while, looking flawless and feeling soothed.
i knew i liked this stuff, but the unsolicited compliments on my skin since i’ve been using it have really sealed the deal. i can’t say that it would be the solution for all skin types, but for those of you who like the feel of a tinted moisturizer but prefer the coverage of a foundation will certainly be in high heaven.
covergirl + olay tone rehab 2-in-1 foundation is available in drugstores and online for $13 – $16.
it’s not feeling so september-y in virginia these days, and until the temps dip below 80 degrees, i’m going to be prone to shiny face. while me and the gland gods duke it out over that one, at least i’ve found a simple solution in jouer’s essential matte touch.
my most contentious areas are the creases on the sides of my nose, the dip between my bottom lip and my chin, and the pesky upside down triangle between my brows. the glow is apparent immediately after applying moisturizer and doesn’t disappear with the application of makeup. to combat this little problem, i’ve taken to dabbing matte touch on my trouble spots and shine is zapped completely without the need for powder or blotting papers. my makeup glides smoothly over the places where i apply and the result is a flawless face. this is a weapon of shiny mass destruction, a new and all-too valuable asset in my beauty arsenal.
if you need to keep your oil in control, jouer’s essential matte touch is a must. grab your own here for $26.
this foundation is a five-star experience from start to finish. beginning with shade selection, urban decay has thought of everything.
step one: shade selection
if you purchase this product in person at sephora, you’ll be greeted by a stack of handy shade selectors that will help you to choose your perfect match. it takes the guesswork out of a foundation buy and i really appreciate not having to swatch a dozen things (and thus run around looking crazy for the remainder of the afternoon). each shade is numbered, with those ending in .0 being neutral/cool and those ending .5 being golden/warm. so super easy!
step two: application
urban decay has also created the ideal tool for applying this foundation and while you might be quick to assume that it’s a bit gimmicky and a slick trick to get you to spend another buck, i promise you it’s not. the good karma optical blurring brush is $24, almost $10 less than its sephora-brand counterpart, and it is good quality stuff. the bristles are packed just densely enough to easily buff (this or any liquid) foundation on to skin. you can use it to build coverage where needed and even “stamp” naked skin on to areas that need a little concealer. i won’t be so bold as to tell you that the brush is a must if you’re going to go for this foundation, but i do think it will give you some pretty stellar results.
step three: wear
the foundation itself has gorgeous texture. it’s weightless and the closest thing i’ve felt to that “second skin” so many brands claim to duplicate. it still covers nicely, hiding pesky blemishes and discolorations and you can easily build up the coverage in places you need more. for me, the best part is the finish. it’s a demi matte that isn’t drying but really works to fend off shine. i find that it keeps me looking flawless far longer than my favorite drugstore foundation, but that it’s much less dehydrating than my (former?) favorite prestige.
i’m obviously really loving this stuff and would recommend it to anyone who has combination to oily skin and needs light to medium coverage. if you’re curious (and you should be!), i would urge you to watch this great little video and then get your hot buns to sephora for a quick test to see if you like the finish. i can’t wait to see if you’ll be as smitten as i am.
urban decay naked skin is available at sephora for $38.
think you’ll give this one a try?
since turning 30 (ok maybe since way before then) my dark circles have worsened and a permanent crop of fine lines has made itself at home around my eyes. i do not love these signs of aging, and if i cannot accept them with grace, i must fight them with the forces of beauty. i find that a liquid concealer works best for me in the eye area (the rest of my face is an oil slick, but my under eyes are pretty dry – go figure), but it can be tough to find the right shade and consistency to combat dark circles while also brightening and not settling into fine lines. apparently it’s a tall order, but a tall order filled with one teeny tiny bottle.
perricone md’s no concealer concealer is a major multitasker. its light texture is easy to blend by patting onto the under eye and the formula is long wearing while at the same time being ultimately crease resistant. i’m loving the way that it leaves my eye area looking well rested and brightened but it also leaves things feeling hydrated while also delivering anti aging benefits and spf 35 protection. (i mean really! can it make the bed, too?!)
you will have to pry this one from my cold, dead hands ladies and gents. it might be a bit of a splurge at $45, but i predict that you will use it every day once you give it a try. scoop it up at nordstrom and be sure to let me know what you think!
as summer swelters, i am constantly seeking products to perfect (and protect!) my makeup look. while i normally embrace the dew and stay away from setting powders, stila’s new set & correct has me changing my tune. more finishing touch and less cake-y matte-ifier, this super cool powder trio in a sleek black compact is good looking all on its own. a half turn of the shaver dispensed onto a big fluffy brush is perfect over a tinted moisturizer or lightweight foundation. just a tiny bit sets makeup flawlessly with a sheer finish and the three shades work together to brighten and illuminate (peach), minimize redness (green), and counteract sallow undertones (lavender). talk about super powers! this powder corrects the minor imperfections that your one-shade foundation cannot mask while zapping oil from the t-zone and any other shiny spots that may need tending when the temps reach the triple digits.
stila’s set & correct powder is available in a bunch of places for $34, but zappos will ship it for free! (you’re welcs.)
i owned the brush and meteorites duo from pucci and guerlain’s partnership in 2007. it cost me $85 and i’m pretty i ate ramen noodles for a week as penance for the purchase. as a freshly minted 25 year old, i remember feeling so freaking fancy swirling that pink brush around in those pastel-hued pearls and sweeping them over my face.
this is luxe beauty at its finest.
now that guerlain and pucci have teamed again, i’m itching to invest in the pretty. this time around, the set will cost you a whopping $102. it’s a commitment, but i’m thinking it’s worth it to have these two pieces of art in your arsenal.
available now: guerlain by emilio pucci meteorites perles, $59; guerlain by emilio pucci powder brush, $43
ps – please vote for me / the glossarie in allure’s beauty blogger of the year competition! you can vote once per day, now through friday 4/27. gracias!
for a smaller beauty brand, josie maran has been cranking out winner after winner in my book. the former model-turned-makeup-mogul has now created a self-adjusting powder foundation with the nourishing and hydrating benefits of argan oil … and there are so many things right with this product, i’m not quite sure where to begin!
first of all, it feels like heaven and magically disappears onto skin, creating the best powder match of any product to date. it mattifies my complicated combination bits, but isn’t drying or itchy like other powders. the coverage falls perfectly between sheer and medium and i just can’t stress enough what a pleasure it is to wear. pile all of those compliments into a formula that also comes complete with spf 20, and josie just hit gold with this flawless face in a compact.
note: this product is flying off shelves (my sephora was already out of the two lightest shades and they are currently out of stock online – make sure to request an email for when they’re back in action!) and while i don’t hesitate to gamble it will be around for awhile, you’ll want to get your hands on one of your very own asap.
josie maran argan matchmaker powder foundation spf 20 is available in three shades for $34 at sephora.