Bobbi brown foundation reviews

Ask any makeup-wearing muggle out there what they most covet in a foundation and I can almost guarantee they’ll tell you something along the lines of this: solid coverage, longevity, and a natural-looking finish. I include the latter simply because (and feel free to @ me) but I think it’s safe to say when most people wear base makeup on the daily, they want their skin to still look like their skin — just, you know, better.

Bobbi Brown has been nailing the aforementioned trifecta since the inception of its Skin Foundation Stick, and with all of its successors, so when we were told the brand would be releasing a totally new complexion perfector in 2018, we knew we were in for something good. Great, even. Lo and behold, just as we predicted, the newly released product did not disappoint. In fact, the foundation actually exceeded our expectations.

Introducing the Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF 15, which the legacy brand is dubbing “the foundation you can smile in” due in part to its smooth, ultracomfortable look and feel — meant to leave the wearer feeling confident AF and wanting to smile their face off. If you think about it, how many foundations can you actually say that about? Because I, for one, have tried what feels like hundreds in my time as a beauty buff and have very rarely found myself loving one enough to grin because of the way it made me feel.

This one might very well be the exception, though, as its do-it-all status is seriously impressive. It claims to stay intact for up to 16 hours with zero cracking, creasing, or caking, and not only that but it promises to look the exact same way after 16 hours as it did when you first applied it. A lofty claim, for sure, but before you go and get skeptical, the brand had to go through rigorous rounds of scientific testing in a clinical setting in order to make said claims, Gabrielle Nevin, the vice president of global product development at Bobbi Brown, tells Allure.

Even better: The brand takes the testing process a step further by having actual consumers give it a go as well. “We have panel tests with a range of different women from different age groups, skin types, etc.,” explains Nevin, who adds that they also send the product to their makeup artists all around the world so that they can test how the foundation holds up in different climates.

Lauded by Nevin as the brand’s highest-performing foundation, as well as its mattest finish to date, there’s little doubt that this new Bobbi Brown base will become a fan favorite — especially for those who struggle with severe shine and grease throughout the day. Manufactured to stand up to sweat and humidity, control oil, and last the entire day, all while remaining featherlight and natural-feeling on the skin, the brand calls it a “multidimensional matte,” meaning you can see light reflection on the skin and it looks undetectable, but you also get that shine-free, fresh, clean feeling all day.

So how, exactly, did the brand achieve such a formula? By combining oil-control agents like marine sugar cane and natural mineral powders with skin-loving emollients (vitamin E and shea butter) to simultaneously hydrate the skin whilst combatting excess sebum, that’s how. This is done via an innovative high-speed cold-fusion process, which blends all of the ingredients together seamlessly so that they’re perfectly dispersed throughout the product. Nevin explains that this allows you to get an even lay-down of everything that’s in the formula so it almost looks like it’s “floating” on your skin. “It feels really silky, lightweight, and breathable,” she says.

Buy Now: Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick, $46, Nordstrom

My ideal formula combines a semi-matte finish (you know, the kind that’s equal parts velvety smooth and gently dewy), enough coverage to cancel out vibrant alcohol-induced redness, and long wear time (as I said, I have an aversion to flesh-color icebergs). Oh, and rather than a suffocating coat on my face, I’d like something that feels so featherweight I forget I’m wearing it in the first place. Shoot your shot, beauty brands.

In truth, I wasn’t expecting Bobbi Brown’s Skin Foundation Stick to fulfill all of these demands the night I grabbed it. I have vague recollections of once testing it on the back of my hand, but apparently I wasn’t that impressed at the time because I promptly forgot it existed.

Cue the fateful eve of my party-crashing. I was running late and couldn’t locate my trusty bottle of Armani Power Fabric, which I eventually realized I had forgotten to pack when moving to another country. I rooted around in my beauty heap until I unearthed this gold and black tube, let out a gusty sigh, and proceeded to scribble lines across my face, blending them in with my fingers. Without bothering to give the mirror more than a cursory glance, I was out the door.

Best last-minute decision ever, as it turns out. While swivel-up sticks like this one often go on patchy, this one lays down smooth, even coats of color that don’t catch on dry spots or skip over oily T-zones. I’d describe the feel as a dry-touch cream—one that glides on seamlessly, then disperses weightlessly across my face. It’s apparently packed with emollients like olive extract, as well as light-diffusing powders that create an incredible airbrushed effect. One coat delivers an effect halfway between a tinted moisturizer and a foundation, while two or three easily dial up the intensity to a full-coverage formula. And you can really layer this on liberally too. It never starts feeling thick or greasy, or looking caked-on. I wear it in 2.5 Warm Sand when I’m at my wintry palest but switch to 3 or 3.5 once I start developing a tan. In person, it delivers the same poreless results as it does on camera. You can zoom in as much as you’d like on the photo above; my face will retain the texture of a beige-tinted eggshell.

Skin Foundation Stick comes in 42 shades, something I don’t see nearly as often in stick formulas as I do in liquid ones. And unlike liquids, these are especially easy to travel with or keep in your everyday makeup bag. The tube is compact, but you need so little product for each application, I can see mine lasting for a very long time. Plus, as I’ve been told via beauty expert Instagram DM—the ultimate litmus test for any product—it makes my skin do amazing things. And that’s really all I need to know.

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick, $46, Nordstrom

Sarah Wu is a writer in Berlin. Follow her at @say.wu.

Overall score: 80/100

Tested November 2018

This Bobbi Brown foundation is a 16-hour long-wear full coverage foundation that has been formulated to still be weightless, like a second-skin. The product contains marine sugar cane and natural mineral powders to help control excess oil and shine while still delivering hydration, to leave a matte coverage that doesn’t look flat.

It claims to instantly conceal redness, discolouration and pores for an even-toned complexion. The product also claims to be waterproof, and sweat and humidity resistant without creasing, streaking or changing colour throughout its wear.

The formulation has a creamy gel-like texture with a fresh herbal scent and hints of lavender. The packaging is a weighted glass bottle with a black pump dispenser and a smooth well fitted cap. It comes in 30 shades ranging from alabaster to cool espresso.


Available from:

Price when tested: £32.00

GHI Expert Verdict

Testers absolutely loved the luxurious high quality feel of the bottle, with the product scoring full marks on pack design. The formulation was lightweight and felt comfortable on the skin leaving a smooth finish. With testers noting that 1-2 pumps was sufficient to cover the whole face, not a lot of product was needed for the anti-redness effect. The skin was left looking smoother and more even-toned. The formulation was gentle and non-irritating with 98% of testers agreeing that they did not experience any irritation during usage. 92% of testers found the product was also easy to remove at the end of the day.


  • Ease of use: 4.5/5
  • Design: 5/5
  • Instructions: 5/5
  • Performance: 3.9/5

We Liked

  • The colour stayed consistent throughout the day
  • Redness coverage lasted all day
  • Helped to control excess oil

We Didn’t Like

  • Had a slightly tacky texture
  • Some testers felt that it could’ve blended more easily
  • Those who prefer more dewy finishes may find the product a bit too matte

All product information provided by the manufacturer is correct at time of publication.

The wagon of full coverage, long wear, high performance foundations shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon, with a glut of new launches fitting into this category already this year. Bobbi Brown’s latest offering falls into this bracket, so it’s time to offer you my first BB review, and give you some thoughts on a foundation which promises an awful lot (as you’ll see).

So what are the claims?

There’s quite a lot to get through!

“A 16-hour wear, full coverage foundation with a natural, multidimensional matte finish that’s comfortable, breathable and weightless.”

“Tried and tested in extreme heat and humidity, this 16-hour formula is waterproof and sweat-and humidity-resistant. Flexible coverage won’t crease or streak and stays colour-true. Treated skin-true pigments suspended in an emollient gel base float on skin, reflecting light to enhance skin’s natural contours and dimension. Instantly conceals redness, discolouration and pores with full yet natural coverage. Skin-loving, non-acnegenic formula with marine sugar cane and natural mineral powders helps control excess oil and shine. Meanwhile, moisture-binding glycerin delivers refreshing hydration. Skin feels balanced and comfortable – never tight.”

  • Sulcate-Free, paragon-free,
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Gluten-free
  • Dermatologist tested
  • Non-agnegenic
  • Second skin feel
  • Oil controlling properties
  • Multidimensional matte finish
  • Full yet natural coverage
  • SPF 15
  • 30 shades
  • £31 for 30ml

Before and Afters

*As you can see above, this colour is lighter than the skin on my face – it is a match to my neck though, which is lighter as it has no pigmentation/freckles. I also always err on the lighter side when choosing a colour online as I’d rather it was too light than too dark! I chose shade Cool Sand as it’s a “cool light beige with pink undertones; for fair to light skin”,

What’s the verdict?

Ok – if I could surmise – like, but don’t love. It is a great coverage, but it does require a fair bit bit of product as it’s spreadability isn’t amazing. I do love the smell – which is a lot like the Extra Repair Moisturising Balm, with a hint of lavender, but it doesn’t have a lot of slip, so feels quite dry to blend. I’m not into damp beauty blenders, but I could see how they could potentially give you a bit more time to get this on, as it is pretty quick to adhere to the skin. However it certainly does what it says on the tin – full, blanket coverage, with little need for concealer and it indeed doesn’t let through any oil so great for the oily amongst us. You can see from the above pictures – if you want an invisible, skin like foundation – this probably isn’t for you. You can slightly feel it on your skin, and it is definitely a product you can see, although I have had lots of compliments on it whilst I’ve worn it!

I agree it is pretty bulletproof – its certainly survived the gym, some long days and although I’m not hugely oily, I do get shine on occasion and nothing showed through. It 100% needs a hydrated skin underneath though – I’ve been using Illamasqua Hydraveil underneath and I much prefer the look and application when skin is a little bouncier.

The finish isn’t totally flat, but definately sits more in the traditional matte camp than the radiant matte camp, with less life than I’d usually want from a base. In the interests of impartiality, I’ve completely fallen out of love with my skin at the mo, which I really don’t think has helped with how I feel about this foundation – I could see myself liking it much more when my Botox hasn’t completely worn off (shallow I know, but it is not good for ones self esteem that you can do very little treatment wise to yourself during pregnancy)

Pros – Great shade range, full coverage fans will find this to their liking, keeps skin matte, doesn’t crease or move.

Cons – on me I found it did exacerbate my enlarged pores, and some may not love the fragrance. I imagine if you’ve dry patches this could cling as there is so little slip.

Best for – normal, or normal to oily skin

You’ll like it if you like – Fenty Pro’ Filter, Estee Lauder Double Wear, Lancome Teint Idole Ultra 24h

Bobbi Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF 15 is £33 and available here.

Emily x

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15

If you ever saw me in real life, you know that I’m a full-coverage kind of girl. I have lots of moles on my skin as well as occasional breakouts, so I prefer products that cover it all… and don’t make my skin look dry. I know it’s close to impossible to find a foundation that does it all—especially if you have a combination skin like mine. But I continue my hunt for an ideal foundation by testing lots of new products every single week. In my attempt to find a perfect everyday foundation I picked Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation in liquid and stick forms. Let’s see how it worked for my skin!

This foundation comes in a glass packaging with a pump that makes application so much more hygienic. I enjoyed the fact that the pump doesn’t release too much of product at a time, so you will not end up having excess product. Another positive thing about the Skin Foundation is that it has a watery texture which is my favorite type of liquid foundation formula to work with. It’s easy to apply, it doesn’t dry off on a beauty blender before you have a chance to blend it, and it provides a beautiful sheer coverage.

As advertised, the product provides a beautiful natural coverage which means it makes your skin looks like… skin, but it doesn’t camouflage skin imperfections. The foundation is buildable and it doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. It does look natural when I applied one layer, and it continued looking blended and beautiful when I tried to build it up on the areas of my skin that require more coverage. Be careful with putting too many layers though if you are not planning on setting your foundation with a powder as it might move throughout the day.


The product features an oil-free formula which makes it suitable for acne-prone skin. The coverage is beautiful if you are into a natural foundation finish. It’s easy to blend with both a brush and a beauty blender. The foundation works great in a combination with different types of primers and concealers. The color range of this product is impressive (it comes in 30 shades) so you would be able to find the shade that matches your skin tone.


I would not call this product a super long-lasting. Also, it doesn’t cover skin imperfections (which is expectable form a natural coverage foundation). While SPF 15 is better than nothing, it’s not enough for your daily sun protection if you are not wearing any SPF underneath it. Also, the foundation is pricey (it goes for $50 per 1oz.) which is almost $10 more than my favorite Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation.


It’s a great everyday foundation that truly looks like skin! It would work better for people who do not have breakouts and redness as it doesn’t cover everything.

Where to Buy

$50 at Sephora

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick

Let me preamble this review by saying that generally I’m not a fan of stick foundations as these feel too creamy on my skin, and unfortunately this stick foundation is not an exception. It does provide a medium to full coverage that looks gorgeous on photos, but in real life, I prefer something more sheer and lightweight. While the product was easy to work with (I tested both a brush and a beauty blender application), I noticed that it’s breaking out around my nose.

In comparison to the liquid form of this foundation formula, the stick doesn’t feature any sun protection at all, so you need to apply an SPF moisturizer or a primer if you are using it. The stick does cover all the skin imperfections in a very natural and blended way, so I ended up repurposing this product as a concealer! Maybe it’s just me, but this stick foundation does a wonderful job camouflaging my undereye circles and acne scars on my chin. If you ended up using this foundation as a concealer though make sure to set it with a powder as it’s quite creamy and might end up my moving without a proper setting.

This stick makes a great concealer that provides a beautifully blended coverage. It’s easy to apply and blend. It will last throughout the day if you set it with a powder. While the product cost $46 for 0.31oz., you receive more product than Hourglass Vanish Seamless Foundation Stick ($46 for 0.25oz.).

Feels too creamy for my taste. Breaks out around the nose area. Doesn’t contain SPF.

While I like using this product as a concealer, I would not repurchase it as a foundation. Again, I enjoy liquid foundation formula better so it might be just my personal preference.

$46 at Sephora

I hope you enjoyed this review of Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation formulas. I wonder if you tried any of these? If so, make sure to share your opinions on these products in the comments area below. Also please let me know if there are any other foundation formulas you’d like me to review.