Ever taken a chance on a new foundation, only to feel like you’re wearing a heavy mask by mid-day? Even though these days most of us are social distancing and home alone solely with our families and our cats, there can be a real self confidence boost that comes with wearing makeup. And beyond that, there can also be a real sense of normalcy that’s delivered by following daily rituals like applying foundation (whether or not we plan to leave the comfort of our PJs). Enter: the best whipped foundations. These new wave formulas make wearing makeup feel like you’re dappling your skin with whipped cream or a luxurious mousse—which while still dessert, is about the furthest thing from too much pigment being caked on skin.
“Mousse foundation adds air-soft coverage with a lightweight feel,” says celebrity makeup artist Robert Sesnek. “They’re great for all skin types, and many have extra hydrating ingredients.” So for days when you’re wanting a little something-something without feeling like your skin needs full coverage, these can be great options. “Some have a mattifying effect and some have a luminous effect,” says Sesnek. So when you shop for a whipped foundation, you’ll want to pay attention to the finish called out on the pack.
When you’re ready to apply there are some secrets to making your foundation feel as if it’s barely there. For best results, celebrity makeup artist Natalia Thomas recommends applying in a pressing and rolling motion with a damp makeup sponge. From there, you can dust skin lightly with a powder to bake the foundation in for all-day coverage, or you can skip for a really airy and laid back finish. Ready to find a formula that works for you skin? Keep scrolling for options at every price point.
A favorite of Thomas’s, this luxuriously comfortable formula contains light-refracting particles that create the illusion of perfectly blurred, luminous skin. It’s also composed of 70 percent water, so it feels cool and refreshing all day long.
Prefer a matte finish? This one looks and feels like soft velvet, and the infusion of hydrating hyaluronic acid and soothing white birch extract keep your skin nourished the entire 24 hours it promises to wear. Available in 40 shades, there’s a color match for everyone—and a corresponding whipped concealer, to boot.
Though this base is technically marketed as a balm, Thomas counts it as a favorite whipped formula in her kit. Both full-coverage and deeply nourishing—a rarity in the foundation category—it’s ideal for dry skin types. We’re also huge fans of the included brush, which allows you to expertly pick up the product and stroke it on.
“Depending on your coverage preference, you can use this as either a mousse primer or as a light mousse foundation,” says Sesnek. Alone, it color-corrects and blurs away pores, but when you want extra coverage it preps the skin for your favorite foundation. It’s so blendable, you can even swipe it on with your fingers.
Clean makeup enthusiasts, this one’s for you. This aloe vera, avocado oil, and rosehip seed oil-loaded formula goes on as a super workable cream, then dries down to a soft-focus, powdery finish. Bonus points for the chic, travel-ready packaging.
Another epic mousse formula with a brush included. See a trend here? Matte color-correcting pigments “float” on the skin while marine and botanical extracts from the Black Sea smooth and plump the skin—so your skin’s more flawless when you remove your makeup than when you applied it.
At the drugstore, it’s hard to beat this whipped airy formula that delivers matte (but not chalky) coverage to skin. Try tapping it on with fingers for a tint that lightly hugs skin or build it with a brush for days when you need more amped-up coverage. Zoom calls here you come!
If you’re looking for the very best foundation for your skin type, look no further than this very handy guide. And here’s how to choose between light, medium, and full coverage foundations when you’re not quite sure where to start.
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