Ok. Well, maybe you won’t exactly look like a million bucks—but trust me, you’ll look great. It has nothing to do with price. It has everything to do with the application.
Well, it may not be a million, but I can save you lots of Benjamin’s by telling you that with the right application, you can wear lower-end foundations even better than luxury brands!
I don’t want to sound “preachy” and don’t want to sound like I know it all—because I don’t know it all. It’s just that from trial and error, I realized something. Perhaps it’s that I’ve become wiser with age or more like I’m trying to work with my lines and wrinkles the best possible way I can. But I’ve realized that you can work with what you have and you can work with those signs of aging!
No foundation is going to give a 60 plus year old face the dewy and wrinkle-free look that we had in our twenties. Let’s face the facts. Real life isn’t filtered. The majority of us haven’t had fillers or a face lift (although I would love to be a guest at NY’s Hospital for Special Surgery to have my face and neck lifted) so we must deal with the effects of the aging process. And that’s fine.
Gurls–life ain’t filtered. Take a good look at this face that’ll be 63 next month. I got lines. I’m not hiding them either but my foundation isn’t creeping into those lines aplenty!
And one of the most important products in my cosmetics militia is foundation. I use it not to disguise anything but I use it to even out my skin tone. I use it enhance! Over the years I’ve acquired some redness and spots that blend in with my freckles. I have lines. I have wrinkles. And the goal is to get that foundation to do its job without gathering in the crevices and lines of my face and to not look cakey. I also don’t want my skin to appear so dry.
I know—you’re probably thinking that I’ve lost my mind. I swear I haven’t but with experimentation and making sure I have the right tools, I’ve learned that I can wear any foundation that I have and it’ll really look great and last all day.
So—without further ado. Let me explain.
Here’s a rotation of the current foundations that I’ve been rotating during the winter.
From left to right, clockwise. Wet ‘n Wild PhotoFocus foundation, The Ordinary Coverage Foundation, Fenty foundation, Wet n’ Wild Cushion Foundation, The Ordinary Serum Foundation and back to Wet n’ Wild PhotoFocus foundation. In the center is the Laura Geller Baked foundation that I use in the warmer weather!
The exception being in the hot weather I’ll wear the Laura Geller Baked foundation.
Now—currently, the priciest foundation I’m using is the Fenty foundation which cost me $34.00 and still manages to be on the more affordable side than many high-end, luxury brands.
My most pricey foundation and boy, this remains one of my faves!
It’s all in the application!
First, I’ll make sure my skin is prepared by being clean and a thin layer of serum is applied under a light moisturizer. Follow that with primer.
My current rotation of primers. Left to right. The Ordinary Silicone Primer. The Ordinary Liquid Primer. Fenty Primer. Hard Candy Shine-Free Primer. I’ve been using the Hard Candy primer a lot due to the very cold and dry weather. It goes on a little more “wet” for this horrible wintry mix!
Blah, blah, blah.
What I’ve learned is that if the application process is done correctly, then even the lower-end drug store brands will look fantastic.
I use different applicators for different foundations.
My foundation artillery! Various brushes and a sponge!
Might I suggest to invest in a beauty blending sponge? My sponge of choice is Real Techniques. It does the job and costs around six bucks. I use this for applying my foundations from “The Ordinary” and also use this to apply my Fenty Foundation.
Real Techniques Blending Sponge. A bargain at around six bucks. I have to hide this because Chippy ate four of them and I will need a new one soon but I’m not giving this to him as a treat!
The Real Techniques sponge is fantastic for applying these foundations. I wet it, wring it out a bit and apply the foundation with the dampened sponge!
I also never forget to add a drop of Argan oil to the foundation before applying.
I also never put foundation on anymore without adding a drop of oil first! It is a game changer!
This brush from iT cosmetics? The handle is loose and I’m ticked off big time about that because I’ve had the brush for under two years. This should not happen to a brush I paid over $45 for. Regardless, it’s still the best brush for applying my Wet n’ Wild Cushion Foundation! It blends the foundation in so well!
If you look closely you can see where the silvery thingy that separates the bristles from the handle looks slightly “off”. It’s loose and I’m so annoyed. That should not happen. Regardless this brush is fantastic!
I stipple the brush into the cushion and then apply to my face. It is so good that I have a hard time seeing where the foundation actually IS!!!
My big spoon brush? Well—that’s the brush I use to apply the Wet n’ Wild PhotoFocus foundation. Hands down, this brush blends this foundation in so that you can’t tell I’m wearing any foundation at all!
I’m going to wash this brush after I write this post! But boy, I love the density of this. All the spoon brushes are great!
If you recall, I added the spoon brushes to my “Best of 2016” remember? Oona got me a set that Christmas and I love these. The density is so great for blending this PhotoFocus foundation! The brushes are from Bestidy and are on my Amazon page!
And the big-ass buffing brush from Tarte? That ended up to be the perfect applicator for the Laura Geller Baked foundation!
I have such a love/hate relationship with Tarte. Their cosmetics dry me out like a ragged old raisin in the Sahara desert but the brushes are terrific. Too bad Chippy ate my favorite one! This brush is GREAT for applying the Laura Geller Baked foundation!
What’s great about this brush is that it is also very dense but picks up just the right amount of foundation. It was worth the money I spent.
And after I’m finished applying the foundation, I lightly buff with a $2.99 brush I purchased at Marshall’s. It’s great for that final light buff. Then I mist with water, wait a minute and continue applying concealer, contour and blush!
This $2.99 brush from Mr. Perfect is pretty-much perfect for that final light buffing. This was a great bargain find and proof that an inexpensive brush is just as good as an overpriced one that becomes loose in less than two years!!
Look. I’m not promising that by the end of the day you won’t have any foundation settling into fine lines, but if you are active, if you are going to sweat a bit or work under harsh lighting, after a few hours any foundation may not look as perfect as the moment you applied it.
However, if you apply your foundation with the right tools, it’ll play for a better shelf life. And if someone says anything to you about any settling, then they are standing too close to you for personal comfort.
Seriously. I put my foundation on at approximately 6:30 in the morning, Monday through Friday. The weekends I sleep a bit later. During the day, I do not touch up at all. When I was home all day I never touched up and when I’m working I never touch up. My makeup stays put. All. Day.
Try this out and tell me what you think. I’m no expert but these various ways of application really do work wonders for me. Take a look –I swear I’ve used different foundations in each of these photos but I can’t even remember which foundations I’ve used.
I do remember I used the Wet n Wild cushion foundation yesterday and it gives a nice look..
Look! No filters! What you see is what you get! I also used the Cushion foundation today!
Four different looks with different foundations (and wigs). Seriously–no caked on foundation and the wrinkles aren’t full of foundation that crept in! I swear it is in the application moreso than the product!
I’m off to make some tea. It’s snowing like a Bastid and I went into the office earlier today. I was the only one there! But it was great because I got so much accomplished!
Thank Wayne Goss and God that I was the only one in the office–had anyone seen me taking selfies, they would have thought I was nuts! It was fun being there toute seule–all alone!
The angels in heaven sure have a lot of dandruff! It’s snowing like crazy!!!!
It’s still winter and as a reminder—here’s Vivaldi’s “Winter” from The Four Seasons. Enjoy the day!!!
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I absolutely love your new wig on you, Catherine. The style, colour and length are gorgeous on you! I am relatively new to your blog and I love your honesty and humour. Thank you for sharing your style tips and make-up tricks 😄
Hi Mary! Thank you so much! Hey. Honesty is my policy and humor is what we should all be having a bit more of!!! It’s a good thing to laugh at yourself every now and then!!! Thanks again my friend!! XOXOXOXO!!!!
Quick question, does it matter if your primer ‘matches’ your foundation? As in do they come from the same manufacturer? Or do you just mix and match depending on the weather, skin condition etc? That’s awful about the IT brush. Their stuff is supposed to be awesom but it’s pricey. I have the under eye concealer which is like putty but you have to work it down and apply with their brush ( of course). I go on Sephora looking for foundation and it’s so confusing but if I go to the store I feel COMPELLED to purchase although lately I up front ask for a sample to try. Sephora is great for that but the Department stores not so much. Great post, thanks!
I really don’t match primer to foundation. When I first bought the Fenty foundation, many reviews said it worked better with the Fenty primer. I saw no difference. I’ll usually grab the first thing I can but the Hard Candy primer has been great during the dry cold weather. I’m on my second tube already. Ugh. iT cosmetics is such a hit or miss for me I LOVE the Lip Vitality products and the brushes but I think the products are way overpriced and the iT concealer, creams and face makeup wreak havoc on my skin. way too dry!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!
your oil tip is a life changer! I had a little bottle of coconut oil and it works great!
Margaret. Isn’t it the greatest? I can’t imagine ever wearing foundation without the oil added to it!!! XXOXOXO!!!!
Looking young and fabulous girlfriend- I love the Wet N Wild Foundation and the short wig!!! XOXOXO
Thanks Kenz!!!!! Oh…that WnW foundation is the best! I’m so impressed with that brand lately!! Do you watch Tati’s reviews on YouTube? She reviewed a ten dollar foundation from L.A. Girl. I need to try it!!! XOXOXOXO
Hi C…..as always thanks for comments on products. I have been a makeup snob i think as I have used more expensive brands only……..im gonna try the fendi u mention.
I LOVE the short wig on you….l.so sassy.
Please don’t ever get facelift……a friend of mine did a full face, eyes and neck and OMG does she look terrible. I’m trying to be happy with face god gave me. I earned these lines and they’re not so bad.
Husband and I are down with flu, just checking in to see what’s happening .
Hi Christine! Nah–I won’t do a full-on facelift. Although I must say, Bonaparte’s aunt, Daniele Delorme had a lift and boy, her plastic surgeon did the greatest job on earth. Perhaps the French plastic surgeons are better. LOL! Thanks though. I am digging that short wig too! Try the Fenty foundation, though, I’m sure you will like it!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!
Thanks Catherine- you really are an inspiration. I need to invest in some brushes. I’ve been using the Nyx primer which makes a difference to my foundation – L’Oréal Lumi – however it feels like it’s a better quality vasculine and I wonder if it’s just petro chemicals and is that good to put on your face. Do all primers havd that texture?
Hi Yvonne. There’s a difference in many primers. The Hard Candy primer feels greasy at first but that dries down in no time. I like the feel of the Fenty foundation because it feels a bit “whipped”. They all keep the makeup on and that’s a good thing right????? XOXOXOXO!!!!
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Yikes! I only ever have one foundation on the go at a time and never used primer until you convinced me to give Elf a go. To be honest I didn’t see much of a difference but I have to get up for work at 0400 and leave at 0500, I don’t have time for blending and plus the lighting in my bathroom is crap. After a 12hr shift my face looked the same as it always did….knackered. I was disappointed with my RT brush, I paid a tenner and it shed hair after a couple of months so I purchased a cheap one which has been top notch.
The short, sassy wig looks so pretty.
Thanks for the Vivaldi! xx
Hi Fiona! See–I love a primer, although I’ve been told by one makeup artist I know that an extra layer of moisturizer will do the same job–so who knows–right?? Hey—sometimes the cheapy makeup brushes are the best ones around!!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!
Lovely and some great tips
And my dog has eaten quite a few of my favourite make up applicators! Bloody dogs!! 😂😂
LOL!! I’m amazed that Chippy loves the taste of Real Techniques sponges. He’s eaten a seven-course dinner of them. why do our dogs eat weird stuff?????????? XOXOXOXO!!!!
Thanks for your application tips. I forgot the drop of oil one. Never heard of the buffing one. I’m going to buy all those Wet and Wild foundations. I certainly haven’t found a great one yet. So drug store here I come as soon as I can walk on my own.
Hi Catherine I started reading your blog because I am so fed up with trying to find foundations that work and primers. I love how you show the products and brushes. I always feel after a few hours like my makeup has absorbed into my skin. I hate that. maybe Im not letting my moisturizer dry before I apply my primer !!! I also need a good eye primer.
Hi Vivian! Thank you!!! Oh…I think it’s just a matter of finding the correct primer. I don’t let my moisturizer dry before applying primer. If you get the chance, pick up the Hard Candy brand primer. I absolutely love it. It’s really good!!!! I don’t use eye primer because my lids are pretty dry and the shadows last!! XOXOXOXO!!!!
Hey loved this blog! It was very informative. Can you please share the shade of the ordinary foundation that would match the soft beige from wnw. Thankyou♡
Hi Maria, The best thing is to go to Theordinary.com in the site there is a foundation guide that can best tell you!! So glad that you enjoyed the blog. Thank you!!! XOXOXOXO