Coming at you with three different recommendations because who doesn’t love options?
As the latest installment in this cleaning out the makeup bag series, I’m talking all about foundation. Essentially this is where I review my top natural/organic beauty picks that are just as good, if not better than their conventional counterparts. (For earlier posts in the series see here and here). I believe that foundation or some form of base makeup is the most integral piece in any kit unless you just happen to be blessed with a totally clear, even skin tone – in which case I envy you 🙂 But most of us could use a little evening out and brightening each day which is where foundation comes into play. However, I am a huge subscriber to the “your skin but better look.” I don’t want anything that appears mask-like on the face or even worse, cakey. Rather, I prefer a light to medium coverage that simply enhances and boosts natural glow. After trying out a quite a few different options I have laid out my top three picks below. In this instance, I thought a few choices may be better since most of us have varying preferences when it comes to base i.e. powder vs. liquid, dewy vs. matte finish etc. Keep on reading for some of my thoughts on each.
Jane Iredale PurePressed Base Mineral Foundation – I use the shade Golden Glow. This one was the biggest surprise out of the bunch since never in my life have I liked or worn powder foundation. Every one that I tried previously was either too cakey or did not offer enough coverage. Furthermore, they all seemed to lead to an ultra matte (i.e. ghost like) finish. Yet, this Jane Iredale formula delivers on all fronts and even has SPF 20. Additionally, it is enhanced with antioxidants like pine bark and pomegranate extract that help fight free radicals. It is super easy to apply, simply swirl your brush around in the pan, tap off excess, and swipe onto your face. You really don’t need too much as it builds quickly and provides a nice even coverage, while letting your natural skin peek through. It even magically gives some radiance to the face despite being a powder formula. I would recommend picking up this little brush as well since it makes the application seamless and fits into the pan perfectly. Jane Iredale is top of my list for travel as well since it has SPF, will not leak all over your suitcase, and is nice and compact.
Gressa Minimalist Corrective Serum Foundation – If I was forced to pick an absolute favorite out of the three, this would be it. (I was introduced to Gressa by Becky at Take Care Shop here in DC). It comes in a small dropper/serum bottle, which you have to shake pretty vigorously before each use. Although the bottle is small, a little goes a long way. Seriously – I only use one drop to cover my whole face and neck area. It is the most full coverage of these three, but still lets your skin shine through and adds the prettiest glow. It dries to a slightly matte finish, so nice for oily skin types. I find that with my oily t-zone, it looks best with just the tiniest bit of powder applied. I also love blending it in with the Gressa brush as it just makes everything look like skin, without any lines or streaks. If you are dealing with a couple spots from acne or scarring, it won’t cover them entirely, so you will need a touch of concealer. But honestly, I don’t really mind if these show a bit – I mean everyone knows they are there already and it ends up looking more natural if you don’t pile on too much trying to cover up. The beauty of the formula lies in the stellar ingredient list – think organic broccoli seed oil, elder flower extract, and vitamin C. I truly feel like I am helping my skin by applying these luscious oils and letting them sink in, rather than just covering up and clogging my pores. (I wear shade 3.5).
Vapour Atmosphere Soft Focus Foundation – This is the glowiest option and instantly makes you look lit from within. It is a liquid and out of all three applies the most like a traditional formula. But again you really only need a tiny amount, 1 to 2 pumps for the entire face and neck. Also, you can really blend it out and get an even look with your fingers, so perfect because there is no need for a brush or extra tools. The heat from your hands actually helps it “melt” into the skin for an undetectable finish. Again, I love the ingredients in this one – think camellia, sunflower, and castor seed oils, these actually help with anti-aging. Even though it is a liquid and provides a dewy finish, it dries down very quickly on the skin – making it a good option for those with oily skin. I would also recommend setting this one with just the tiniest bit of powder. (If you have very dry skin, I have heard that the Luminous Foundation stick from Vapour may be more up your alley). I reach for this one on days when I need some extra radiance and want that dewy, natural glow. I wear shade s123.
So there you have it – my top three natural foundation picks. After years and years of using the Nars Tinted Moisturizer in Groenland as my holy grail base product, I am thrilled to find cleaner alternatives that perform even better. I also appreciate that they are each filled with such beneficial, active ingredients and antioxidants – they serve a dual purpose, coverage as well as skincare. That is something that most conventional brands just do not offer and I feel better knowing that there are no toxic chemicals or parabens seeping into my skin all day. Do keep in mind that with the Gressa and Vapour formulas, you will need to apply some sunscreen underneath (doesn’t hurt to apply some under the Jane Iredale as well). For SPF recommendations, check out this post. For reference, I have a light to medium skin tone with yellowish undertones. My skin is also fairly combination and tends to get oily in my t-zone. Feel free to leave any questions in the comments below and let me know what beauty product you would love to find a cleaner dupe for next!