Putting it to the Test: Cheap Foundations

Every morning the first thing that I do is turn off the airplane mode of my iPhone and scroll through my Instagram feed. I follow quite a number of beautyb/vloggers and make-up brands so every morning I am confronted with the most beautiful (new) make-up looks and products. Sadly for me my bank account does not contain a six-figure number nor does my student status help my financial independence. I am obviously not the only make-up lover who struggles with these things. So for today’s post I tried three cheap foundations.


I bought three different foundation types from three different brands. Firstly, I got a mousse texturized foundation. I have always been so fascinated by these types of foundation because they seemed kind of an odd combination. How would this type of foundation work? Why choose a mousse type foundation? Secondly, I got a stick foundation because I have seen those everywhere on Instagram and I was just really curious as to how these would work. Finally, I got a liquid foundation with a drop-formula.


I used my Real Techniques Buffing Brush to apply all three foundations… or well I tried.


This is how I looked before without any make-up on. Between the applications I cleaned my entire face and used the Etos Primer as a base for the products to make sure that any problems would not be the fault of my own skin.


So I tried the Essence Soft Touch Mousse Make-up in the colour 04 Matte Ivory first because I have always curious about foundations with these types of textures. Finding a foundation in my skin tone is one of the most difficult tasks when it comes to beauty products… Let alone finding a cheap foundation which matches. You may wonder why I went with 04 but for some reason this appeared to be the lightest one (logical? don’t think so).


I love how make-up brands just throw around the label ivory like they are salt bae… This is most definitely not ivory, not even close. I did try to keep an open mind, maybe it was just so dark looking because it was still in the container. I tried to apply the product with my brush which was not very successful. Afterwards I went ahead and applied the product with my hands.


I have to say that I was pretty surprised, I did not look quite as orange as I expected. I would. Now here are my marks for this foundation:

Price: €3,89

Softness: 6, the product was not very soft but it did not leave my skin feeling sticky or anything. Nothing special here.

Smell: 6, at first it did seem to smell a bit chemical but it soon faded nothing too special.

Texture: 8, I loved the texture of this product, I will most definitely reconsider buying a mousse textured foundation.

Colour: 4, the colour did not match my skin at all. The difference is not as bothersome as I thought it would be. Probably because my face is a lot paler than the rest of my body. If you look close at the area around my lips you can tell the colour difference.

Coverage: 6, the coverage is pretty great. I would not say it is the most pigmented foundation I have ever tried but considering the price it is good enough.

Other: I really did not like having to apply this with my fingers due to hygienic reasons. Maybe a sponge would do the work as well but I do not see how you could apply this too well with a beautyblender.

Conclusion: For a little less than €4,- you get a pretty great foundation. I did not expect much but I was pleasantly surprised. The downside though is the range of colours they offer. The four shades are really not that different and even the lightest is still pretty dark. If you can get the colour to work for you I would say that this foundation is a go.


The second foundation I tried wat the NYC Get it All Stick foundation in their lightest colour once again named ivory… once again not agreeing with the name of the shade. This foundation spread like butter on my face and while fearing it would be to dark I quite loved it.


The foundation is shaped like a concealer stick and pretty much works the same way. What really shocked me was how little product was in the packaging and also how fast you find yourself using quite a lot of product.


Price: €4,99

Softness: 6, the foundation was not as soft as some foundations that I have tried/own but like I wrote before, it did spread like butter on my face.

Smell: 6, once again nothing special.

Texture: 7, this foundation did leave my skin feel kind of sticky but overall it was pretty okay.

Colour: 5, once again the foundation was too dark but also this time it did not appear as noticeable as I thought it would.

Coverage: 6, the coverage is not that high but it is great for layering so you can controle how much coverage you want.

Other: A little goes a long way is not true for this product and I think they have been ridiculously greedy with the amount of product that have provided. Furthermore, the product does fade and you can still see the foundation on your fingers after having applied it 15 minutes earlier.

Conclusion: While I thought the foundation was pretty okay I would not recommend buying it because the stick really is not that long so I cannot see it last longer then 7 applications.


Finally, I tried the Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation in the shade 010 light beige. Oh the irony, the one foundation that actually comes close to the colour ivory calls itself light beige.


As you may or may not know I am very clumsy and when I say very clumsy I mean trip-over-my-own-feet kind of clumsy. The idea of this foundation is that you apply a few drops of the product on your skin and then blend it with a sponge or brush. I managed to spill this foundation all over my scarf (which explains why in the next two photos I am not wearing one anymore).


Price: €6,99

Softness: 7, when I tried this foundation in the store I did not like the feel of it that much but when I tried it on my face it felt a lot better.

Smell: 8, this foundation smells really good!

Texture: 6, this product was a bit too runny for me and it resulted in a huge foundation stain in my scarf (luckily for me I still had my Vanish stain treatment and managed to get the stain out entirely).

Colour: 7, while still not quite there this shade did match my skin tone the most.

Coverage: 7, The coverage was pretty okay and because of the texture of the product it is quite easy to adapt the coverage to get the desired effect.

Other: I do not like the way you have to apply the foundation.

Conclusion: Out of all three I do like this one the best. Not only did the colour match my tone the most but also the foundation smelled the best out of the three which I think is important. Furthermore, you get the most product for your money and you are still not spending over €10,-


So this is the final look I created with the Catrice foundation as a base. I shaped my brows, drew winged eye-liner, added some mascara and finally applied a bright red lipstick to create a simple everyday look.

I hope you guys liked this post and I would love to know what you think. Do you have any favourite budget foundations?



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