Top 5 – Foundations

Foundations are probably one of the things I get asked about the most! It’s the thing that most people struggle to get right too! I’m a complete foundation junkie, always on the hunt for the next new miracle solution to all my skin woes. In all fairness, I’m lucky to not have many major skin issues really, but who doesn’t want their skin to look the best it possible can?!

I’ve tried more foundations that I can count over the years and will obviously end up trying loads more as new exciting ones are launched, but I just wanted to share with you my top 5 current most used foundations, in no particular order, I just really like them! (Note: All of my favs work with or without primer, so it’s personal preference and I wear both with and without and like them either way!)

The first foundation I’m going to talk about deserves a mention, not just because I like it, but because of how massively popular it is on a global scale! Credit where credit’s due, Estee Lauder’s Double Wear Stay in Place Makeup has been around for what seems like an eternity and is as popular now as it was back then!

Probably the very first foundation I came in to contact with too, as for as long as I can remember, it was my Nana’s foundation of choice. The formula has evolved over the years slightly, it’s still kept everything people love about it, but has also embraced new cosmetic technology and has maintained its popularity like a boss!

double wear cropped

Estee Lauder Double Wear claims to be the UK’s no.1 foundation and I can see that. It appeals to such a wide demographic, for both age groups and skin type/ concerns. It’s also available in (up to now and this continues to grow) 44 shades, which I think is amazing and in warm, cool and neutral tones, so something for everyone. It comes in a 30ml bottle for £31 (here)/ €38 (here), which is pretty standard for a higher end foundation. It has an SPF10, which isn’t the highest, so I’d recommend extra SPF in your skincare routine (premature wrinkles, sun/ age spots and possibly worse are nobody’s friends!) however, less or even no SPF in foundation is great for minimising flashback (that white cast on your skin/ different colour head in photo’s…not a good look!) so is a really good choice for bridal makeup. It boasts 15 hour wear, a natural finish, medium buildable coverage and is sweat and humidity resistant. It does feel lightweight on the skin considering the coverage and I love how it doesn’t oxidise on the skin! It is available in a ‘light’ version…I just don’t like that one as much, I’d rather just use a small amount of the regular Double Wear for a natural, stay all day skin personally. One of the only things that may bug some people (not me) is the lack of pump, but pumps are available from other brands (eg the MAC Cosmetics one*) which you can fit to the bottle if you want.
Estee Lauder Double Wear is a great one to stick on and pretty much forget about if time (or being bothered, ha ha) is an issue that day and with proper skincare, is great for all skin types!

The next foundation I absolutely love and am going to talk about is my Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation by MAC Cosmetics. This has been a constant favourite of mine since it’s launch a year or so ago and I always have a tube in my personal makeup bag, as well as being one of my most used pro kit foundations too! As the name suggests, it is waterproof and can last up to 24 hours, which is good to know. Even if you’d never wear it that long realistically, you know it’s going to last (and still look good) even after the longest of days! It’s oil free, hydrates the skin instantly (hydrates long term too) without feeling to much if your skin’s a bit on the oilier side. Feels really comfortable on and is true to colour/ again, doesn’t oxidise on your skin. Medium to full coverage and gives a beautiful natural satin finish.

mac longwear cropped

It reminds me a lot of MAC Face and Body Foundation because it evens tone, but your skin still looks likes skin, it just has extra coverage and a more flawless finish. The Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation is £26 (Available from Debenhams in the UK*)/ €36.50 (and from Brown Thomas in Ireland) for a 25ml tube. That’s a bit smaller than typical foundation size, however, in my opinion, it matters not! You only need to use the smallest amount and one of the best things about this foundation…you can use it as foundation or concealer, always a win…double duty product! I also love that it comes in a squeeze tube, you can get to every last bit and it’s brilliant for travelling!

No surprises really on my next one, I did a full review on the Too Faced Born This Way Foundation (Available from Debenhams*) a while back and am still really loving using it and how it makes my skin look! I’m not going to go in to much detail on this one (You can read my full review here), but all I’ll say…if you want to look healthy, naturally glowing and like you’ve had way more sleep than you probably have, this is the guy for you! Perfect skin, bottled!

too faced born this way cropped

My next foundation favourite is also a huge YouTube/ Beauty Guru favourite, so I’d be surprised if you’ve not heard a lot about it already! It’s the Re(Marc)Able Full Cover Foundation Concentrate by Marc Jacobs Beauty. Where do I start?! Coverage! I’ve never come across any other foundation that feels as relatively light as this one does, while having such flawless and complete full coverage! It’s oil free and again, 24 hours is it’s staying power claim…in all honesty, I haven’t already and won’t test this theory (eww, ha ha) but all I know, is it does last all day/ as long as I need it too. It comes in a gorgeous frosted glass bottle, that almost looks like a pill with it’s sleek black lid. Inside, there’s a dropper style applicator. I know some people are all about the pump, but I actually really like this ‘dropper’ style.

marc jacobs foundation cropped

This foundation actually has a warning/ instructions, to only use 2-3 drops for your full face. Me wanting to immediately test out this theory (thinking ‘yeah, yeah, whatever, doubtful’ etc etc) went ahead and applied pretty much as much of this as I would any other regular foundation. Note to self/ any of you guys that do decide to try it – it’s called a Concentrate for a reason! As soon as I started blending I knew it wasn’t going to end well, ha ha, it was like a full on mask! Anyway, that was swiftly removed (!) and started again. This time (after my usual skincare) I dotted a drop on my chin and one on each cheek (way less than my first attempt!) and buffed it out really easily to a beautiful, soft matte and totally flawless finish! Seriously impressed and as well as for those days when only perfect flawless skin will do, it’s concentrated formula works amazingly mixed with BB Creams or even your fav moisturiser/ liquid illuminator. It currently available at Sephora or is also a UK exclusive at Harrods which is where I picked mine up from. It is on the pricier side at £37 and on initial appearance, especially for the 22ml size, but the Re(Marc)Able Full Cover Foundation Concentrate actually contains twice the amount of pigment as other leading full coverage foundations, hence the tiny amount you have to apply for flawless dream skin and how long each bottle would last. I’ve used mine so much and have hardly made a dent! It’s not going to be everyone’s coverage cup of tea, but I think it’s a great addition to your every occasion, all moods and varying skin days foundation arsenal!

The last foundation in my favourite 5 is an affordable, light, every day beauty in the shape of the NYX Cosmetics BB Cream! It’s a purse friendly £10 (Available at €14 (And at for 30ml of product. The packaging’s nothing to write home about and nowhere near as fancy as the Marc Jacobs one, but I love this stuff and the completely functional squeeze tube it comes in! One of it’s best features, is that you can use it as a primer/ mixed with a higher coverage foundation to sheer it out slightly or as a foundation in it’s own right, adding extra cover with a concealer if you like/ need. It’s a light weight skin perfecter and gives a hydrated, natural and radiant finish to your skin. It’s oil free, mineral enriched formula brightens, smooths and gives a decent level of coverage for a BB cream in my opinion. There’s other BB creams I do like to use, but find with or without primer, this lasts the longest on my skin. The only thing the NYX Cosmetics BB Cream lacks is SPF. Hugely important to wear an SPF (that goes for everyone, even those of us normally inflicted with less than brilliant weather…you can still UVB(urn) and UVA(ge) though cloud!) but I tend to have that somewhere in my skincare routine anyway, so personally, not so much of an issue. For those of you who would prefer one with built in SPF, I also rate the Urban Decay Naked Skin One And Done (Available at Debenhams*), I have a dedicated blog post on this too (read it here!) and is a similar product, with built in SPF20.

nyx one and done cropped

It’s been quite a hard task for this foundation obsessive, to cut this down to just 5! There’s so many foundations out there that I love, but these are just my current ‘go to’, most used and ones that just work for me right now, as well as, in my opinion, all pretty great choices for one and all!

I’ll include the shades I use here actually, as point of reference, possibly helpful as a guide if you’re ordering online or just because…I generally like to know the colour people go for, am nosey like that, ha. Plenty of swatches for the full ranges of all 5 can be found online, so be sure to check them out as a more tailored to your own skin guide! So…(for my normal, non tanned at the mo skin tone)
Estee Lauder Double Wear – 1W1 Bone or 1N1 Ivory Nude
MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof – NC15 or NC20
Too Faced Born This Way – Ivory
Marc Jacobs Re(Marc)Able – 12 Ivory
NYX BB Cream – Nude (01)
Urban Decay Naked Skin One and Done – Light.

PRO TIP – Spritz your damp beauty sponge or foundation brush with makeup setting spray (I like the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray – Available at Debenhams*) before bouncing/ buffing in your foundation for a flawless, long lasting finish, or with a mineral infused water spray (I like MAC Cosmetics Fix + Available direct from MAC) for a more hydrated, dewy look.

Are there any incredible, holy grail foundations that I may have missed that you’ve found and now just can’t live without?? Any recommendations gladly received and enabling most welcome! 😉

Lyd x



I’m now based in Cork, Ireland. Although I do still take select bookings for North Wales/ Cheshire and Dublin (get in touch for more info) and am available to travel country wide…I’m mainly taking makeup bookings for Cork City and surrounding areas. 

As a bridal makeup specialist, I do get booked up well in advance so if you’re looking for wedding makeup in Cork contact me asap to check availability, secure your date and avoid disappointment! I’m freelance and travel to your home/ venue of choice.

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