These images don't even show my BB creams (I pass those off as skincare). This is just a small selection of the products I cover my face in every day. I didn't even realise I had such a big problem until I was searching for one a shade too dark in order to mix it with the YSL Youth Liberator (too light). A quick search unearthed three foundations I haven't actually touched in quite some time...longer than I am happy to admit to.
You see, the problem I have is that I cannot tolerate my skin in its untouched natural state. There are eye bags. Scars. Freckles. Uneven patches. Spots. I could not feasibly contemplate unleashing it upon the general public, so like most people I seek to cover it up. I remember simpler times when I was happy to settle for whatever was on offer at Boots, use a bottle until it ran dry, then buy another. My first high end purchase was the now discontinued Chanel Mat Lumiere. I dreamt of this foundation for so long but in the end it was a disappointment, oxidising and not delivering the flawless finish I so wished for. So ... I began my quest to find the perfect base.
And here you see the outcome! I don't actually want to contemplate how much must have been spent on my collection so far, although I do use vouchers and birthday money where possible. I even have a sneaking suspicion that there are other foundations lurking in my collection that I have forgotten about and am yet to unearth - one day they will roll out from my make-up box, another reminder of money I spent in vain. The problem is, I think, that I am seeking a product that doesn't exist. A base that will hide my imperfections, even my skintone, add a little radiance and last all day, without feeling like I'm wearing a mud mask.
In all fairness I think some of the above have come close, so I’ve compiled some speed reviews for those of you reading this and nodding in shared frustration. The one I enjoy wearing most is without a doubt the YSL Touche Eclat (£29) foundation; I love how it makes my skin look and it doesn't feel like I'm wearing make-up; unfortunately the coverage is a little too sheer for my spotty days (ie every day) and so it falls just short of the elusive perfection I seek.
The YSL Youth Liberator (£36) comes close - this is my most recent purchase and if it weren't for the fact it is oh so-slightly light for me (they don't do my Touche Eclat shade, much to my chagrin) it would probably be perfect. However, I have been mixing it with the Bourjois Happy Light (£11.99) recently and I’m really enjoying the results. The latter is really dark, even in the lightest shade, so the YSL just helps to make it a bit more wearable for me.
Estee Lauder Double Wear (£28.50) is an old favourite that I have been wearing on and off for around three years now (don't fret, it's not the same bottle) and is the only high-end base I've ever repurchased. It really delivers the longevity and coverage I adore but leaves my skin looking a bit flat, even with highlighter, so I use this quite sparingly these days. It also seems to accentuate my light wrinkles so I have begun to mix this with dewier formulas to help out. Lancome's Teint Idol Ultra 24H (£28.50) offering leaves me with a similar finish so again it isn't one I wear every day.
MAC Studio Fix Fluid (£21.50) is another old favourite, good for high coverage but it does oxidise, despite me using one of the lightest shades in NW15. I think this was my second ever high-end purchase – good times! Bourjois Healthy Mix Radiance Reveal (£9.99) is an updated version of another base I used to wear religiously – the wear time on this isn’t fantastic but I do think it is a good budget option and I really like Bourjois foundations as you can probably tell. MAC’s Studio Sculpt (£25) is a nice fall-back foundation but better for winter due to the gel-like texture; this time of year it just slides off my face unfortunately. Finally, the Laura Mercier Silk Crème (£34) foundation is one that shows up time and time again on all the top beauty blogs. I purchased this after reading one too many reviews and… I don’t love it, I’m afraid. It’s nice enough but after all the rave reviews I was expecting miracles! This accentuates dry patches and doesn’t look great under my eyes, but the coverage is reasonably good and I have been mixing with other formulas to try and get my money’s worth out of this. It’s a shame because I really wanted to love this foundation!
So my quest continues, but for now I am quite happy mixing and matching the bases in my stash until the perfect foundation comes along. I’m still harbouring secret desires for Nars Sheer Glow and I know there are a host of brands out there I haven’t ever tried, so I don’t expect my obsession to abate any time soon!
What are your favourite foundations? Please indulge my addiction and let me know if you’ve tried any bases that have absolutely blown you away recently!
*For those interested my shades are:
YSL Touche Eclat BD40
YSL Youth Liberator BR20
Bourjois Happy Light 51
Estee Lauder Double Wear 1N1 Ecru
Lancome's Teint Idol Ultra 24H 01
MAC Studio Fix Fluid NW15
Bourjois Healthy Mix Radiance Reveal 53
MAC’s Studio Sculpt NW15
Laura Mercier Silk Crème Medium Ivory