Foundation Sticks - Which One Wins?

Anything that gives me an extra five minutes in bed in the morning is a winner in my book, so when I read about the new wave of time-saving foundation sticks, I was ALL. OVER. IT. I mean, I don’t want to leave the house looking ill (as I apparently do without makeup – thanks Husband), but I don’t want to spend ages trying to make myself look half decent either. So I tried a couple out over the last few weeks.*

*At this point I need to add that I know foundations sticks aren’t a ‘new thing’ – I mean, I was using a Max Factor pan stick in my early teens – but I did favour the ‘pile it all on until you look like you’re going trick or treating’ look at that time, and now I’m after something slightly more subtle. Just slightly though.

Super easy to use and feels gorgeous on the skin – like, well, like smearing butter on my face (but in a really, really good way). This foundation stick goes on so smoothly and only takes a quick buff with a brush to get even, medium coverage. Once applied it looks fresh and glowy, with a slight sheen – although I did find that after around six hours on a warm day, I DID look like I’d smeared butter on my face. And NOT in a good way. My combo skin has foiled me again. I do love the initial finish and feel of this though – but reluctantly it’s relegated to sensible nights out (or any occasion where I won’t be wearing it too long). For those with normal or dry skin, this will probably work well for you. This is £29 from Debenhams which I think is a good price – I’ll probably still repurchase it for occasional use, as I like it so much.

Well technically this isn’t a stick – it’s a tube of liquid foundation with a sponge applicator on the end. When I first tried this I HATED it – the applicator seemed useless and the product itself too sheer to make any difference to my skin (although it is marketed as sheer to medium). But I persisted, and found that if I blend quickly then go back over the area with a second layer, I get a nice even – if a bit light – coverage which dries semi-matte and lasts well, as I’d expect from DoubleWear. My biggest disappointment with this was that the sponge applicator doesn’t feel as nice as it looks, which sounds odd, but if you try it you’ll know what I mean. It’s not soft and fluffy, it’s sort of, well, hard. It takes a while to blend the product out evenly. Oh and the other thing is that I suspect this will run out pretty quickly – the tube only contains 14ml of product and since I need a couple of layers to look human, I’m using it up pretty quickly. This is £28….and I don’t think I’ll buy more once this runs out. I just got caught up in the gimmickyness of it all, and now I feel a little sad, in a ‘I could have spent that £28 on shoes’ sort of way.

So this is another actual stick, and very similar to Makeup Forever in how smoothly it glides onto the skin. Drawing all over my face with this on a morning is actually sort of soothing. It blends so easily and melts into the skin whilst still giving decent coverage. It’s a lot more matte than the MUFE version without being flat, and gives a pretty natural glow to the skin. Hang on though, I’m saving the best bit: it still looks good after several hours of wear! Granted, I had to indulge in a bit of powder action at lunchtime to keep nose-shine at bay, but other than that, no slipping, sliding or disappearing here. This is definitely the alternative to MUFE for us combo/oily gals. Could it be the new HG? COULD IT?! Well, yes I think it actually could, apart from the fact that it’s not available in the UK yet – bah! I picked this up in Sephora in New York recently and I’m already panicking about how I’ll replace it  - Sephora won’t even ship it over here for us, the villains!  Apparently this product is launching in the UK next year, but why such a delay, Lancome? WHY?! Currently priced at $42 – it’s a bit dear, admittedly, and I don’t know what the UK price will be – but I’m going out on a limb and saying it’s absolutely worth it.

Verdict – well, it’s pretty clear that my winner here is Lancome Teint Idole Stick – I think I’m actually a little bit in love with it. A time-saving, super smooth, long lasting formula that looks amazing. What am I saying – I’m definitely in love with it. More than a little bit. It’s amazebobbins.

What are your foundation stick picks? x
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