Review of Make Up For Ever Face & Body Foundation by ClariceD
I have extremely sensitive skin that clogs easily and ranges from dry to dry-combination depending on the time of year. I don't have much to cover other than some old acne scarring on my chin/jaw (substantially faded due to prescription retinoids) and the uneven skintone with redness that my skin sensitivity sometimes produces. In foundation I look for light, but buildable, coverage, tenacious wear, a satin or slightly dewy finish, and a formula that flatters dryness and flaking when they occur. The shade needs to be fair and slightly, but not dramatically, cool-toned, to suit a >NW15. Most importantly, it must not irritate my reactive skin.
Makeup Forever Face & Body Foundation claims to be a long-lasting, water resistant product that evens out skintone and leaves a natural finish, perfect for a no makeup makeup look. Having made it through two bottles I feel qualified to say that in my experience most of that is true. As other reviewers have pointed out, if you're seeking full coverage you'll be disappointed by this. The coverage is light, buildable to medium by layering, and does a good job of producing an even, radiant canvas. It blurs imperfections but doesn't cover them totally (unless they're minor) so for the confidence of a fuller coverage you'll need to use this in conjunction with a concealer. The finish is gorgeous, healthy and slightly dewy but not in the way that apes oil. Having said that, oily/combination or oily-skinned people would probably prefer a more matte finish.
This is a water-based gel foundation and requires shaking before every use. The new generation pump bottles are much easier to work with than the old version without a pump. It's very liquid (but not as watery as MAC Face & Body Foundation) and feels refreshing on the skin. I find fingers or a foundation brush to be the most effective ways of applying this. A sponge would soak up most of the product immediately. I have tried several shades and prefer #38 for my skintone. #20 is too warm, too beige and a bit too dark, although as I lean neutral and the foundation is sheer I can get away with it. This would be a good shade for NC15-20 but those on the paler end of that range might find #20 too dark. Those on the darker end of the NW15-20 range might want to look at #2.
Despite being fragranced (often problematic for me) MUFE F&B is very benign to my sensitive skin, having never caused a reaction, immediate or delayed. It's also, in my experience, extremely kind and flattering to flaky skin - as I discovered during my adjustment phase to Retin A. Another point in this foundation's favour is that it photographs extremely well. I have used this for friends' bridal makeup on both dry and combination skins (with Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage or Shu Uemura Nobara stick foundation on blemishes) and it looks flawlessly beautiful in all lighting, including under flash.
I have repurchased and would do so again. My only hesitation is that I find MAC Face & Body wears better and for longer *on me* and transfers less to clothing, phones etc. Your mileage may vary - other reviewers have found the very opposite. MAC is also buildable more quickly for me, although as I prefer a sheer coverage anyway this is not particularly significant. (For reference my shade in MAC Face & Body is N1). Overall, for my needs, an excellent choice. It's quite hard to find in the UK - I purchased from Guru Makeup Emporium, which has excellent customer service. The staff were also very sweet to my bewildered fiance when he went in to pick some up for me. UK price: £28.95 (plus shipping) for 50ml, gurumakeupemporium.com.