Foundation formulas

Do you often find yourself staring aimlessly at make-up shelves trying to decide which foundation to buy and what the difference really is between them? Well, that nightmare is over. BeautySA lets you in on the basics and what each formula offers.


I’m sure most of you are familiar with this one, as it is the most popular within the foundation family. Depending on the brand, they can offer you anything from light to full coverage. Liquid foundations can provide anti-ageing formulas and even a matte or dewy finish. They are in liquid form (obviously) and usually come in a pump-action container. The best way to apply this foundation type is with a foundation brush or sponge.
Try: Clarins Skin Illusion Natural Radiance Foundation SPF10, R335, Jane Iredale Liquid Minerals Foundation, R593, Justine DermaPerfect Youth-Enhancing Foundation SPF25, R160, Max Factor Ageless Elixir Foundation, R220, Yardley Oatmeal Light Cover foundation, R69.95.

Foundation Formulas - Liquid


You will either find this formula in a loose powder or in a pressed form. Powder foundations are great to use on oily skin and also if you want to create sheer buildable coverage. They also offer you a matte finish, if that is what you are going for. Most of them come in a convenient container, which include a sponge for easy application.
Try: Almay Smart Shade Smart Balance Skin Balancing Pressed Powder, R160, Max Factor Facefinity Compact Foundation, R169.95.

Foundation Formula - Powder

Cream to powder

It looks like a cream but goes on like powder. This type of foundation is also nice to use if you have oily skin and want to touch up on the go. They provide medium coverage and offer a satin finish once applied. Most moisturise your skin too.
Try: Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Sponge-On Cream Foundation, R230, Charlie Face Make-up All In One Cream to Powder Compact, R104.95.


If you have problematic skin, then mineral foundations will become your best friend. Whether in a liquid or powder form, these foundations have added minerals that help alleviate skin problems and offer buildable coverage.
Try: Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Base Pressed Mineral Powder, R593, Revlon ColorStay Aqua Mineral Makeup, R210.

Tinted moisturiser

If, like me, you’re not a fan of heavy make-up, then tinted moisturisers are great. They offer subtle coverage, just enough to even out your complexion and offer a luminous effect. Most of them have an added SPF and are great for weekend wear too.
Try: Jane Iredale Dream Tint SPF 15, R474, QMS Medicosmetics Sport Active Cream, R610.

Foundation formula - Mineral


If you want a barely-there natural look, but still need coverage to even out your skin tone, then mousse foundations are the ones. They are lightweight and you can layer to create the perfect amount of coverage you want. It gives a powdery finish – great for oil control too.
Try: Maybelline Dream Nude Airfoam, R159.95, Revlon PhotoReady Airbrush Mousse Makeup, R220.

Give all of them a try until you find your perfect match!

Other articles you may be interested in:
Foundation types explained: Powder
Foundation types explaine: Liquid
Foundation types explained: Cream
Battle of the BB creams
Introducing the new Pond’s BB cream
Most reviewed foundations 2012


51 Responses

  1. Well i have tried all of these methods and i find liquid foundation works for me; such as the Clarins Skin Illusion Natural Radiance Foundation SPF1 gives me the cover i need with no cracks or breakouts at the end of the day

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