Sound the alarm: there are new drugstore base products!
Since both CoverGirl and Revlon have new foundations (on the pricier end of drugstore, IMO) on the market, I decided to battle them over the course of two weekends. Here's how I did it:
- I wore the CoverGirl on Saturdays; one of the two weekends I ran errands, the other I stayed home.
- I wore the Revlon on Sundays; one of the two weekends I ran errands, the other I stayed home.
In short, I gave them both a fair trial for a first-impressions style comparison. And I have thoughts- lots of them. I also added bonus reviews of the new Revlon concealer and a new foundation to Ulta.
Overall: Drugstore makeup is getting expensive. I'm watching price points creep up, but it really smacked me in the face with this post.
CoverGirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir
Price: $11.49 (Covergirl.com), $11.99 (Ulta), $14.99 (Walgreens/CVS) for 30ml/1 Fl OZ (standard foundation size)
Shade Range: 14 shades
SPF: Yes, SPF 20
Shade Purchased: 705/Ivory (the lightest in the range)
Claims: Has vitamins, lightweight, full coverage, hydrating, oil-free, luminous
Packaging: Glass bottle with pump and cover (A+!)
I had high hopes for this one because I watched multiple beauty influencers on YouTube try this out and rave about it. They all cited the luminous finish, which I'm into here at the start of summer. Only one of them mentioned the reason why this foundation will never be worn by me again.
When I first applied it, I was into it. It lives up to the full coverage claim, and it looked like gorgeous, healthy, natural skin. I was loving it and couldn't believe how good it was for the price. It's a liquidy foundation but in a good way- it's what I like this time of year.
It started to break down in my T-Zone after about 4-6 hours and look a bit oily, but that's not the foundation's fatal flaw. I can blot easily this time of year.
It. Oxidizes. SO. FREAKING. BADLY.
I looked like an Oompa Loompa!
Weekend 1 I was self-tanned to about a NW20. Shade 705/Ivory- the lightest- oxidized to MATCH me. What the heck, CoverGirl?!? Weekend 2 I wasn't self-tanned and it looked like I'd been hit by an orange explosion within 4 hours and my face and body were different colors.
Since it's almost impossible to predict how a white mixer would change the formula and accurately predict the amount of oxidation, this foundation is useless to me. I'd recommend it only for our medium-complexion friends because most of the shades in this line are geared towards you. You might be able to deal with this but for a pale person this is completely unwearable and a waste of money by me. It's such a shame because I loved the finish. CoverGirl, get it together. For real.
I didn't bother to take photos of my face because I was so embarrassed. Instead, I'll show you some swatches. In these, the one swatch was placed then allowed to set and oxidize for 2 hours. It was kind of fun to watch it become way too dark- like magic!
This photo is not retouched, color balanced, or anything. How in the HADES is this considered the LIGHTEST SHADE?!?! CoverGirl, this isn't ok.
I rest my case.
I rest my case.
Bottom Line: If you're fair, this is a hard pass. If you're medium, try at your own risk.
Revlon Youth FX Fill + Blur Foundation
Price: $17.99 (Walgreens/Ulta) for 30ml/1 Fl OZ (standard foundation size)
Shade Range: 12 shades
SPF: Yes, SPF 20
Shade Purchased: 110 Ivory (the lightest or second lightest)
Claims: transforms the appearance of lines and wrinkles
Packaging: Opaque squeeze tube
OK, let's just get the price/packaging bit out of the way. This is extremely expensive for drugstore makeup, so I was quite let down by the somewhat cheap-feeling squeeze tube. Even the concealer came in a box! Although it's not fair, I had high expectations from this due to the price. There's some online debate whether 110 or 130 is the lightest, but at $17.99, I was not going to purchase multiple shades to figure it out.
There's also not a lot of claims, which also made me wonder about it prior to application.
It's funny in comparison to the last foundation- I had no idea about it going in, was dubious given the price point, and not a fan of the texture when I first squeezed it out.
This is a mousse foundation- it reminds me a lot of Rimmel Stay Matte or Dermacol Cover Foundation. I felt like Revlon missed the mark by launching for summer- this is more of a fall/winter/spring texture for me. I felt like this would be perfectly timed in the Southern Hemisphere.
I got best application by taking some of it on a palette, using my finger to dot/swipe on my face, then use a damp beauty sponge to blend out. One pass built to high medium/low full coverage and produced a gorgeous natural finish- slightly luminous but less than any dewy foundation. Coverage was great, it's just not a texture I think is right for this time of year in my climate. My audio notes included the following: "I like the coverage- that's not my issue. I can foresee this breaking down and sliding off my face in the humidity. Don't get me wrong, I have a feeling I'll pull this out in the fall."
Color 110 Ivory is a fantastic shade match for me at my natural NW13-15. I was a bit frustrated with it in that I wanted to keep the finish without powdering, but that's not possible. It has to be set. I wear glasses and waited 5 minutes after application (but didn't powder) to put glasses on to check it out. I tore up my nose. I wish cosmetics companies didn't do this to us glasses-wearers!
I powdered with the Laura Mercier Translucent Setting powder which took the luminosity down quite a bit but still looked good. My natural oils in the T-Zone started to poke through after about 5 hours but all that took was some blotting. At the 10-hour mark, it was still hanging strong. Consider me impressed! Yes, my imperfections did look somewhat blurred.
Bottom Line: I doubt I can wear this during the summer, but as soon as the humid inferno subsides I'll be reaching for this. I really love the finish and how it wore- but will look for sales. I recommend waiting for those 40% off drugstore sales and nabbing this to try or a BOGO Free offer and also grabbing the concealer.
I'm also going to throw in a mini bonus review for a foundation I tried in late May that's drugstore-priced that hasn't been talked about much.
Models Own Runway Matte Foundation
Price: $11.99 (Ulta) for 30ml/1oz
Shade Range: 8 shades
Shade Purchased: Porcelain 01
Claims: Matte foundation; smooth finish that saves face
Packaging: Squeeze tube in box
I picked this up at one of my local Ultas. Models Own is a UK-based brand that only recently came to the US in select Ulta stores (and online). One of the cool parts is that they have in-store testers. I decided to try the Runway foundation because it seemed that the lightest shade was hella light and would work on my complexion.
According to my notes, it's very thick and rides extremely heavy on the skin. I noted that this is only a Fall/Winter formula and color for me- and that it's one of the lighter shades of foundation that I own. In short, I wouldn't recommend trying it right now and would say wait until it's cool again. I remember being quite unhappy with how my makeup blended over it and just not happy in general. I won't give up on it, but it's extremely rare for me to put a note on a box and say try again in the winter.
Here's a swatch comparison of some of my lightest foundations. Note the opacity of the Models Own swatch- it speaks to the thickness of the formula.
Bottom Line: Not a spring/summer foundation; the palest shade is very pale-girl friendly. This foundation really is for those who want a full coverage, matte finish- it's hard to make your face have much luminosity with the foundation.
Now, let's move on to the other Revlon product that was released.
Revlon YouthFX Fill + Blur Concealer
Price: $13.99 (Ulta), $14.99 (Walgreens/CVS) for 3.2ml/0.11FL OZ
Shade Range: 6 shades
Shade Purchased: 01 Fair
Claims: Immediately corrects the appearance of dark circles and lines and wrinkles
OK, let's stop here for a second. A drugstore concealer in a box? Nice, Revlon. What I'm not a huge fan of is the cushion wand on top of the click pen because I find those always get nasty. I'd have preferred for a brush-tip, to be honest.
Packaging: Click pen in box (!)
I applied this by clicking up twice (by the way, it takes a hot minute to get the pen to start dispensing product), then dotting the concealer on my underage and then using a damp beauty sponge to blend out. I was really impressed with it- it's buildable (I ended up with 2 layers to cover my undereye circles without corrector) and doesn't immediately crease. I had time to layer it, photograph, and then set before any creasing.
It held on all day without creasing. I set once with Hourglass powder and once with ELF Undereye setting powder. It performed well with both.
Here are a few comparison swatches. Part of the reason why it's not going to be an everyday staple is the shade.
From L-R: NARS Creamy Concealer- Chantilly, Tarte Shape Tape- Fair Beige, Revlon Youth FX Fill & Blur Concealer, Rimmel London Match Perfection- 125 Fair, LA Girl Pro Conceal- Porcelain, Catric Liquid Camouflage- 005 Light Natural
Bottom Line: I think this is fabulous for a more natural makeup day for me when my Shape Tape is noticeable. I think that this is a really good drugstore concealer and would recommend it to anyone.
If you've made it to the end of this really long post, you're awesome. I hope this is helpful to someone with all of the new drugstore base products on the market!