Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick Review

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick Review

Story time: I had a free sample of the Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick a few years ago. I didn’t think much of it (though I was impressed with the generous sample size) and just kept it in my bag as a touch-up product. I found it too thick and cakey-looking, difficult to apply and the wear-time, I thought, was poor.

Fast forward to last month when I was bumming around Cardiff (read: perusing each and every single beauty counter in all the department stores). I was mostly looking to buy one particular foundation (Shiseido Sun Protection Liquid foundation you are my one true love, don’t ever leave me) but of course I spent a long time looking at others because…well, trying new things is fun, isn’t it? I’m quite loyal to a few foundations, but I like to dabble here and there.

I went into House of Fraser to buy the Shiseido foundation, but I ended up chatting to the girl at the Bobbi Brown counter. I thought I’d test out the Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick once again because it had been a few years and I felt like trying something different (although I wasn’t expecting much).

What was really interesting, though, was how the SA applied it: she used a fluffy brush, gently sweeping it across the top of the stick to pick up product, then applied it to my face. This made a huge difference to the finish of the foundation! I was seriously impressed with how natural this looked, especially considering the cakey finish I’d previously achieved. In fact, I was so convinced I bought a stick as well as the other foundation I was looking for!

The Product: Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick

The Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick is a medium, buildable to full-coverage foundation in stick form. It seems to have a bit of a cult status among beauty gurus (Wayne Goss’s video on it prompted me to try it a second time).

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick

Here’s a little about the foundation from the Bobbi Brown website:

Designed to look and feel like skin, this award-winning foundation is formulated with a unique transparent base and skin tone correct pigments for the most natural-looking, skin-like finish. A Bobbi Brown original, the innovative formula features Smart Technology for targeted moisturization or oil control depending on what skin needs. Delivers medium to full coverage and comes in a convenient swivel-up stick for at home and on-the-go application. Available in 31 skin tone correct shades.

First time around I wasn’t totally convinved this was “skin-like” at all – it seemed really heavy and mask-like. Turns out I just hadn’t found the best way to apply it (for me, anyway).

How did it perform:

Really well! It’s not my favourite foundation in the world, but it’s great for everyday wear to work. I find it covers up redness really nicely, looks natural and doesn’t slip around on my face. It also doesn’t highlight any dry patches, which is a winner.

Wear-time was great – it lasted a whole day in work without moving or breaking up. I would probably say this isn’t best for a night on the town, however.

This blends really nicely, especially when applied with a fluffy brush as opposed to drawing it straight onto your face.

I got this in the shade Cool Ivory, but there are so many shades I ended up finding about 4 I could potentially use. I just picked this one because I like it the most. Most of the colours run pretty yellow/warm, but on the plus side, they cater to quite a wide range of darkers colours, so if you’re not pale and you struggle to find the right shade, this could be a good option.

My Verdict


  • Applies really nicely (when you find the best way that suits you!)
  • Lasts a full day at work.
  • Looks really natural.
  • Huge colour selection.
    Doesn’t irritate my skin.


  • Possibly not as hard-wearing as foundations like Estee Lauder Double wear. Better for daytime than partying til 5am.
  • Great colour selection, but possibly not best for those with lighter/cooler skin tones.
  • Kind of unhygienic? I can see the little bits of dust and crap that are gathering on the top of the foundation, which I guess is unavoidable if you’re applying this directly to your face or with your fingers. Gross. But then again I like to pick my nose when no one’s looking, so who am I to judge? (Don’t look at me like that, you do it too).
  • Pretty expensive for the amount of product you get. I only use a little bit day-to-day and have found I’ve used a fair amount in under a month – well, a lot more than other foundations in comparison.

Overall: 8/10. The Bobbi Brown skin Foundation Stick is a really beautiful for everyday wear, although I’m not 100% sure yet if it’s worth the hefty pricetag. On the plus side. it has no added fragrance and is great for sensitive skin.

Shiseido UV Protective Liquid Foundation SPF 30 Review

Shiseido is a brand I’ve had exactly zero experience with until now. I could write the things I know about them as a company on the back of a stamp – they do sunscreen, they are Japanese, they have classy packaging. That’s about the extent of my knowledge on Shiseido (hell, I can barely spell the word).

So, I know they have a pretty decent rep when it comes to sunscreen, and they have a pretty well received sunscreen/foundation which comes in a funky blue blob of a container. I’ve been meaning to try this for quite some time, so I popped into House of Fraiser to test it out.

I was reasonably impressed when the SA applied it to my face, but I was sold when she told me it was £14 instead of the £30 it normally costs. I also got a free gift in the form of a makeup bag plus 4 travel size face and body products #winnerwinnerchickendinner.

The Good

It looks nice. Like, really nice. As in, you can’t tell that you’re wearing makeup, you look like your skin was crafted from the finest marble by an Italian artist with an unreasonably long and hard to pronounce name. So smooth.

It’s lightweight. Like being kissed by a feather made of clouds. You can’t feel it on your face all day, it doesn’t feel at all heavy or cakey.

It lasts all day long. It’s actually a challenge to remove – get your most reliable oil-based remover out for this badass over here.

It suits my skin tone perfectly. Of course this is a much more personal note. But whatevs, I’m just very pleased that something finally matches my skin perfectly.

The bottle is cute and compact, and you get a lovely dinky sponge too.

The Bad 

It can be a ballache for dry skin because it’s so matte. If you have any flakies, back the fuck up and use something more moisturising.

The packaging is a pos/neg type deal – yeah, it looks swag, but you can’t see how much you have left. I’m getting anxious thinking of it running out already and I’ve only been using it a week.

It’s quite hard to blend and dries quickly, so if it doesn’t match your skin tone perfectly, you could end up with some obvious tide marks. Not a good look. Tbh, the sponge, although cute and soft as hell, does shit all for blending and absorbs a fuck-ton of product, which is like…sponge, could you not?

Yeah, I guess it’s expensive, but that’s down to personal stuff too – what’s expensive for one might be pennies for another, so I try not to take cost into account. But I will say I would be willing to pay full price..

It’s actually sort of hard to get off. My micellar water doesn’t quite cut it so I’ve resorted to using mineral oil to cleanse, which is not my preferred method of makeup removal. I imagine this will get right on my tits after a while.

My Verdict

I’m impressed. I’d buy this again at full price, especially for the summer months when my skin is a little more oily. I love the amount of sun protection too; this means I don’t have to worry about using a sunscreen with my foundation.

Overall, 9/10.

Shiseido UV Protective Liquid Foundation SPF 30 is currently £18 at FeelUnique.

Urban Decay Naked Skin Compact Powder | Review

I bought this completely on a whim because I’d splurged on a new perfume and thought “why not buy a new pressed powder too?”. #YOLO, or something I guess.

Anyway, I bought it in the middle of a heatwave, so I was desperately in need of a good powder that would help my foundation stay in place all day, without looking cakey and plastered on. The sales assistant at Urban Decay did a great job at selling me this, hyping up the following claims:

Designed to be virtually invisible once applied, our high-tech, jet-milled powder has an insanely silky texture that feels amazing on your skin. Optical blurring pigments instantly minimize imperfections, diminish shine and create a stunning soft-focus effect that looks professionally retouched. Unlike powders that leave skin looking chalky or cakey, Naked Skin Finishing Powder gives you a radiant complexion and NATURAL-looking Naked coverage.

It sounded great, so I thought I’d give it a chance. 

That was about 5 months ago, so I’ve had the chance to use it on my tanned skin in the middle of summer in sweltering heat, and also in November temperatures when my skin has lost its summer glow and the weather is a little kinder to makeup, so here’s what I found…

It doesn’t perform well over thick foundation in hot weather. I found it looked very caked on and noticeable. This was during a heatwave though, so I guess that can be forgiven. 

It does perform well in normal weather – normal British weather, that is, meaning “mild”. It gives a lovely, not-too-matte, not-too-polished look, so you won’t end up looking like a plastic doll – but I think that’s a good thing. 

Urban Decay Naked Skin Compact Powder isn’t not as good as my current favourite – Bobbi Brown’s Weightless Skin Compact – but it does a great job for a lower price.

The only thing I will say is that it doesn’t last long. I know I’ve had it 5 months, but I haven’t been using it for the entirety of that time period. I already touched pan after daily use after about a month, whereas I’ve been using Bobbi Brown’s compact almost daily for about 3 months and have barely made a dent.

I also don’t love the packaging – it’s a sort of gunmetal, metallic, shiny box which is trying to be luxe, but just fails because it’s covered in smudgy paw-prints from my makeup-stained hands. A bit gross, really. I do like that it has a mirror, and that it’s got a little compartment for a makeup sponge (the one that’s included is quite shit, but you could easily replace it).

I do like that it looks pretty natural and that the packaging is sturdy (so not much chance of breaking the product inside if you drop it) with a mirror and a sponge compartment.

Consistency: Finely milled so doesn’t look too “plastic” when applied over foundation.

Sensitive Skin Suitability: 5/5, no trouble.

Price: £22.00 at Debenhams.

Overall Rating: 6/10. Overall, Urban Decay Naked Skin Compact Powder isn’t perfect, but it’s not bad either. To be honest, Rimmel’s powders perform just as well.

Bobbi Brown Skin Weightless Powder Compact Foundation | Review

For years, my go-to powder has been Rimmel’s Stay Matte Pressed Powder – a respectable and reliable staple in my makeup bag, and at only £3.99 a pop. Not bad. I’d not really dabbled in any other powder foundations as I’d normally just buy the Rimmel powder in translucent to simply reduce shine instead of add colour. It was only when I made a visit to John Lewis to buy some other makeup that I happened upon this product, which lead to my second venture into high-end powders (my first was an ill-fated affair with an Urban Decay compact – but we’ll talk about that another time).

Long story short, I’d bought some NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, had ages to wait for the next train home, so spent a few minutes browsing the Bobbi Brown counter, with no intention of buying anything. I eventually got chatting to the SA, who talked me into buying this. And I’m glad I did…

The reason primarily being that there’s a Bobbi Brown shade – “Sand” – which suits my skintone absolutely perfectly. After buying the NARS foundation which was a shade slightly too pale for summer, I tried this over the top, and it looked beautiful. The formula is so soft and smooth, it doesn’t look at all cakey when applied over foundation (which I find is a problem when using a coloured, rather than translucent, foundation). 

It comes in the most gorgeous, classy packaging, which looks so elegant on my dresser. It is a little long and bulky, which doesn’t make it great for travel in some people’s opinion, but I think it’s good because this means it has a generously sized mirror – perfect for using to apply makeup, instead of using a dinky little pocket-size compact. It’s pretty sturdy too, so I don’t think you have to worry about the product smashing up in your bag.

It also comes with a little applicator sponge, which is of great quality, but, admittedly, I don’t use it because I prefer a brush, and find it’s not the best tool to use for powder application. But hey, I guess you could use it for liquid foundation? 

My only issue is that I think it’s a little overpriced for what it is. Don’t get me wrong: it’s the best powder foundation I’ve ever used, its quality is amazing, but £33.00 for some powder? I don’t know how I feel about that. I will point out that the Urban Decay compact powder I bought lasted about a month before I hit pan, whereas I’ve been using this for about 3-4 months just about every day, and I’ve barely made a dent in it. Urban Decay’s costs £22 for 7.4g, and you get 11g for £33 with Bobbi Brown. I don’t know. I guess I’ll see how long it takes me to finish it, then decide if it’s worth the price tag.

Have you tried Bobbi Brown Weightless Powder Compact Foundation? What’s your favourite powder? Let me know!

Consistency: Very soft and finely milled, so it doesn’t look cakey on top of liquid foundation.

Sensitive Skin Suitability: 5/5

Staying Power: Leaves my face matte all day.

Price: £33.00 for 11g

Overall Rating: 9/10. Best powder foundation I’ve tried so far, but there could be better out there for a lower price.


Guerlain Lingerie De Peau Foundation | Review

After leaving University and securing myself a job, I thought I deserved a splurge on some nice, high-end foundation. I didn’t jump in head first; no, no, I was careful. I tried about 4 or 5 different brands before settling on this one. The One. Or so I thought at the time…

I first tried it as a sample from the Guerlain counter when I bought my La Petit Robe Noire EDT, and I fell in love instantly. Granted, the sachet I had was a shade too dark, but I still loved the way it looked and felt. “If it looks this good when it’s too dark, imagine how great it’ll look when I’m properly matched?” I mused to myself, before skipping off to Cardiff and buying the lightest shade they had (which was a shade lighter than the sample I’d been using). Oh, how I wish I’d got another sample first…

See, the biggest problem with this foundation is the limited collection of shades. There’s supposed to be around 9, which isn’t a great spectrum, but I’m sure that House of Fraser only stocked, like, 4. This is the lightest one, and it’s still too dark. Not only that, but it oxidises into the pinkest tone you ever did see. It looks absolutely beautiful and practically undetectable on the skin when freshly applied, but give it an hour tops and it’ll go a shade darker and change tone completely. Which is unfortunate ’cause when it first touches my skin, it makes it look perfect, like I’m not wearing makeup. 

It also has an SPF of 20, which may be a positive for some of you, but I prefer to get my sunscreen from my skincare, so I’m not a fan.

I’m incredibly saddened by this as it cost so much, as I might be happy to pay the price if I could find a shade that suits me. At least I managed to get some use out of it over summer, while I was a little tanned, however Autumn is now creeping around the corner, and my skin is getting paler by the minute. 

My other issue is the fragrance: It’s got a huge amount of perfume in it, which stings a little and lingers all day. Honestly, why put fragrance in a foundation? What purpose does it serve, other than to irritate the skin? It’s so silly, and pretty outdated. And the smell isn’t even nice – very powdery, definitely for the more mature lady.

Sadly, I won’t be repurchasing this one. I’m currently mixing it with my very yellow toned, and slightly-too-pale-at-the-moment NARS Sheer Glow to neutralize the pink tones a little, so I don’t end up wasting such an expensive product. 

Colour: 02/Beige Clair. Very limited range of shades, which is thoroughly disappointing.

Staying Power: Impressive. It lasts all day, covers my redness, doesn’t transfer too badly. Lasted 8 hours on me.

Consistency: Pretty thick liquid. Quite a weird one as it dries quite powdery under the eyes, but makes the rest of my skin look really dewy during the day.

Sensitive Skin Suitability: 2.5/5. The scent is quite irritating at first, but not so much so that I have to remove it or can’t use it. Still, be wary; try a sample first.

Price: It actually pains me to type this. £37.50 *purse shrivels up and dies*.

Overall Rating: 6/10. It’s not a bad foundation, so please don’t think that. It’s actually a very good, natural looking foundation with great staying power; I just couldn’t find a suitable shade, it irritated me a little, and I think it’s overpriced. Still worth a try though, if it’s within your budget, and you can get a good shade match.


Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15 | Review

I didn’t know much about the Bobbi Brown brand when I went to the counter in John Lewis for a little snoop around. I was really just killing time while waiting for a train, but ended up coming away with a powder foundation (which is lovely, by the way – I’ll review it soon) and a sample of the skin foundation

I just want to point out how absolutely lovely the sales assistant was. She spent ages with me while I faffed about deciding which shade was best for my skin. I was literally there for about 25 minutes umming and ahhing about whether I preferred “Sand” or “Warm Sand” (I went with “Sand”). She also educated me about the brand and how Bobbi wanted to create a makeup line which dedicated itself to looking as natural as possible. Why did I not know this before? I absolutely detest foundations which look fake and cakey – Mac and the Maybelline Dream Mousse foundations come to mind – so it sounded perfect for me. Anyway, she was generous with the samples that I came away with 2 sachets of the skin foundation, and a sample of the skin foundation stick.

The thing about this foundation is that it will look amazing if you already have great skin. I’m very lucky in that my teenage years were kind to me. I have no acne scarring, and my skin, although sensitive, is actually pretty normal with no particularly large pores. My only problem is redness in my cheeks and on my nose, but this covers them quite well and I use NARS’ Creamy Concealer on the bits it doesn’t (eye bags, I hate you).

To be honest, you will probably struggle with the coverage if you have problem skin. Although it’s quite buildable, it probably won’t give you the coverage you need if you are really blemish prone, or have acne or acne scars This is definitely one to keep for days when my skin is in good condition. 

The longevity is okay. It’s no Estee Lauder Double Wear, but I find my redness is still covered when I get home from work 9 hours after application. It could be better, but this is not a full coverage foundation, so don’t expect it to look immaculate for longer than 8 hours.

There’s a great choice of shades, most of them being yellow based and better for warm skin tones, but most skin has yellow undertones, so it’s quite likely you’ll find a match. I actually find that yellow toned foundations cancel out some of the redness in my cheeks, so this could work for you if that’s a problem you have too.

I’m not a huge fan of the fact that is has SPF. I prefer to apply a sunscreen separately, and feel like SPF in foundation (especially if it’s really low) is a bit pointless. Plus it can give you a ghostly face if you’re photographed with flash – not great for a night out. The SPF is pretty low (15), so this may be alright for nights out sans ghostface, but I’ve yet to trial it and find out.

It’s great if you have quite sensitive skin because there’s no perfume in it. I’ve had no bad reaction whatsoever, and it’s quite dewy looking/hydrating, so if you have the occasional dry patch (like me), it should be great for you. It’s definitely not a matte foundation because it’s supposed to look like skin –  so it has a lovely dewy, natural-looking finish. 

Consistency: It’s a water-based foundation, so it’s pretty runny. Doesn’t feel waxy or thick, very light and easy to blend.

Sensitive Skin Suitability: 5/5.

Price: £31 for 30ml

Overall Rating: 8/10. I’d like a little more coverage and longevity, but there’s a great choice of shades, and I’ve found probably the closest match for my skin tone so I’m going to stick with it for a while.