BACKGROUND & BASICS:
I got this as a request, and considering I've tried my share of liquid foundations, I thought I would tell you what I thought of the ones I use. If you saw my collection post, you can see which ones I've tried and am currently a fan of. For a long time I used Bare Minerals (4 years!) before stress really took a toll on my face. College stress made me break out like never before. And then my fiance joined the Navy so you can imagine that wasn't easy. So now that I'm recovering (still have some scarring) I do use liquid foundation again. There are better options for me now than there were 4 years ago, and I use it almost daily now. So far none of the ones I will be mentioning have caused me to break out.
I also want to add that I don't use drugstore makeup because it makes me break out horribly and it always has. I know that there are great drugstore alternatives (Ex. Revlon Colorstay) that could be just as good and even more affordable! I have really sensitive skin. I apologize for not covering those brands, but I guarantee you there are a ton of lovely ladies out there who have. I always suggest looking at reviews before you buy something. It can save you more money than you think.
I also have normal/combination skin. Meaning my skin is pretty normal but I have an oily t-zone. I do find myself getting a bit dry in the winter, but living in Chicago, I don't think it's totally avoidable.
1. MAC Studio Sculpt ($28): I was really skeptical about this foundation before it came out, but it is rapidly becoming my HG foundation. Here's why! It's long lasting on me. Between this and the Studio Sculpt concealer, my blemishes stay covered all day and night. All I find myself fixing up is my powder on my nose because I can't really find a foundation that stops oil completely lol. But this foundation keeps the shine down a lot longer than normal. This also doesn't feel heavy at all! It's very light but gives me full coverage. Also, it's very blendable and creamy. I really like the texture of it. Overall, I am a big fan of this and bring it absolutely everywhere. I only have to use a little over a dime size amount and this tube should last me a few months, if I use it every day. I do switch up on certain days and have my days where I don't wear liquid foundation at all. This foundation is definitely worth the money to me. It also has not made me break out, which I was surprised considering the new formulation. I have to admit that I was never really crazy about many MAC liquid foundations until this. I have SFF but this foundation is the best ever MAC liquid foundation. Period!
2. Chanel Mat Lumiere ($54): I find myself really loving this foundation. "Mat" says it all. This foundation keeps my nose from being shiny while I'm wearing it. It is very light, but gives me full coverage as well. This has a lot of qualities as the previous foundation and I hate to repeat. This one and the Studio Sculpt are more of a tie to me. I wear full coverage foundation because I have a lot of scarring. Many of you out there may not even need it, which is where my other foundations will come in handy. I prefer full coverage. There are days where I'm too lazy to apply liquid, and I give my face a rest, but I love wearing Mat Lumiere on my nights out. It's long lasting and evens out my skin tone amazingly. My one pet peeve with foundations is that I apply them and look in the mirror after a night out and see my scars. It drives me mad with regret! Foundations are not cheap so I hate when I've wasted money on something that just doesn't cut it for me. Chanel, however, does the trick. I recommend this for people who have a problem with an oily t-zone. I use my Prep & Prime and then apply this. It is perfect when you're going to have a long day or night. This one also did not make me break out whatsoever!
3. Makeup Forever HD Foundation ($40): After reading all the reviews about this foundation, I had to try it! And honestly, I love it. It's so light and gives me full coverage! It looks like my skin only better. It doesn't look like I have makeup caked on my face. This one gives me a slight glow and blends in perfectly with my skin. I find that I need more of this to get the coverage I want, but it's buildable. I find this to be more medium coverage with less and full coverage when I add more. It's a fantastic foundation. It's my best friend's HG foundation as well. It really makes the skin look natural. It didn't make me break out. It doesn't take me long to blend it in either, which is nice on those mornings when I'm running late to school! There isn't one thing I hate about this foundation, except maybe the price. But don't we all wish for a great foundation for cheap? lol This foundation is definitely a good one. They have a lot of shades to choose from. It also doesn't feel heavy -- this will probably be the perfect foundation for summer. In winter, I need a bit heavier coverage (Studio Sculpt). In summer, my skin is more normal and I can wear lighter foundation or even just powder.
4. Diorskin Forever ($44): This was my first liquid foundation after getting off Bare Minerals, and it was awesome. It gave me great coverage! Didn't make me break out and blended okay. I thought this was the best foundation, until I tried others. Once I tried others, I found this to be a bit too heavy for me. But it's still one I go to. I wore this the night of my engagement party and my pictures came out really nice. I was suffering from a stress breakout just planning the thing and this baby did the trick. It covered everything! I actually wear this in the winter because I got the lightest shade possible. And it's super long lasting on me, which is necessary when you have snow and 30 mph winds blowing at you! lol =] So this is good. Not my absolute favorite, but still a good one to check out! It's definitely a full coverage foundation. If that's not what you're looking for, do not spend the money. It's definitely worth checking out though I think. It's always been in my top 5 so far. There are days where I pick it up, but it's just not as often as it used to be because I've found better since.
5. YSL Perfect Touch ($55): I know everyone refers to this as their HG foundation, but I'll tell you why I don't. Yes, it obviously makes my top 5. But this coverage isn't full enough for me. It's very sheer and it doesn't really cover my blemishes. To top it all off, the brush applicator drives me INSANE. I'm considering just ripping it off to be honest. So much product gets wasted. The applicator is nothing like a foundation brush and it doesn't do nearly the same thing, which is what I'm sure it's supposed to do. This will also be a summer foundation for me. In the winter, this just doesn't cut. However, it smells nice and it feels so soft and smooth. Like I said before, I need fuller coverage with all the scarring I still have, and unfortunately, this doesn't really cover any of it. I'm going to use this over the summer though because it feels incredibly light. It blends really nicely too. Doesn't make me break out. If you're more of a light-medium coverage girl, this foundation is for you. If you want full coverage from this, you'll have to apply buttloads of it. With perfect skin, this would be a great foundation. But for me, it just doesn't cover everything I need it to.
6. MAC Studio Fix Fluid ($26): This used to be my #1 foundation, but it has slowly made its way to the bottom of the list. Once Studio Sculpt came out, this foundation fell to the back burner, but with good reason. The plus side to this is that it's very long lasting. I mean this stuff does not budge on me all day. It stays exactly where I put it. It also didn't make me break out, which was surprising for me. BUT it is cakey and heavy. It doesn't take much to get the full coverage you desire, but you can feel this stuff on. It feels like I am wearing a mask. I didn't realize how heavy it was till I tried some of the other foundations. I wear this when I know I wont have a chance to reapply my makeup at all after so many hours of working or going to school. It keeps all my blemishes covered, which as you can probably tell is a big reason why I love the foundations that I do. If I had to get any foundation from MAC though, it would be Studio Sculpt. I will use Studio Fix until I'm done with it, but I don't know if I will re-purchase it.
I apologize for the length of this post, but I hope you guys found it helpful! It's hard to sum up how I feel about a foundation in 3 sentences.The best advice I can give you when buying foundations is: ALWAYS ASK FOR A SAMPLE! I cannot stress that enough. It's better to dislike a sample than to dislike a $40 bottle of foundation, and then be stuck with it. So don't be afraid to ask for samples! My local MACs and Sephoras have absolutely no problem doing this. And anyone that does, isn't doing their job right!
Everyone has their own personal preference and your foundation should fit you and your lifestyle. Keep in mind what I like may not be what you like. I have different skin and live in a different place. Also, if you can find a drug store equivalent, buy it! There is nothing wrong with drug store makeup if it works for you. I wish it didn't make me break out so bad. I would probably have more money in the bank. =]
What's your favorite/holy grail foundation(s)?