Maybelline's Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation sounds like a study in contradictions: A product that has a non-dewy finish but still feels moisturizing? In some aspects, this foundation succeeds in living up to its claims; however, an overall lackluster performance means it just doesn't rank among today's best foundations.
Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation comes in an opaque plastic squeeze tube with a twist-off cap. The product inside has a creamy texture that's easy to smooth across skin. It does set rather quickly, so it's a good idea to work fast when applying it so you achieve even coverage. Its soft powder finish has no dewiness at all, yet it doesn't feel drying even hours after you apply it.
This provides medium coverage that can be built up to full coverage, though the more you apply, the less natural-looking it becomes. Other positives: Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation is fragrance free and wears well throughout a standard workday with minimal fading.
Here's the problem, even though it doesn't fade, it can emphasize imperfections, particularly any dry patches you might have. It also highlights lines and wrinkles as the day wears on, and those with oily skin will begin to notice some shine in their oiliest areas around the two-hour mark.
As far as the shades offered, there are options for fair to deep skin tones, in warm (yellow-based) and cool (pink-based) tones, and they look natural on their intended skin colors.
When it came time to remove this foundation, it took quite a bit of work! We tried waterproof makeup remover and our cleanser, and there was still a bit of foundation left once we were done cleansing. It will take a bit of physical scrubbing to get all the foundation off, which might not be the best option for sensitive skin.
Overall, while there are aspects to like about Maybelline Dream Velvet Soft-Matte Hydrating Foundation, it's just not a home run. Its tendency to emphasize imperfections and the fact that it takes a lot of effort to remove translates to a foundation we can't recommend with much enthusiasm.
Maybelline New York At-A-Glance
Strengths: At least one excellent product (if not several) in almost every category; many excellent foundations; superior mascaras; inexpensive makeup brushes; some terrific concealers, powders, blush, and lip color options.
Weaknesses: Lips balms tend to be a letdown; a few of the Great Lash mascaras are surprisingly average compared to other Maybelline formulas.
Maybelline is one of the best-known and most recognized mass-market makeup lines in the world—it's available in 90 countries. Throughout its long history, which began in 1915 when T. L. Wilson founded the company and named it after his sister, Mabel, and Vaseline (which he combined with coal dust to concoct a mascara for her), the company has prided itself on bringing innovative products to the marketplace. L'Oreal purchased the company in early 1996, and that's when things really started coming together for the Maybelline brand.
Specializing in a large selection of lipsticks, nail polishes, and mascaras, there is a lot to love from this drugstore brand. Many of their foundations are exceptional, and their powders, several mascaras, pencils, matte-finish concealers, and Superstay Lipcolor collection impressed us by offering a high degree of quality for their inexpensive price point.
Maybelline's latest urban image is a positive step, as many of their latest launches have been innovative without resorting to "been-there, done-that" gimmicks. Smart shoppers will note the similarities of a few of Maybelline’s formulas to products from high-end brands that are also owned by parent company L’Oreal. That just goes to show conscientious shopping can really save you money—without sacrificing quality or performance.
For more information about Maybelline New York, call (800) 944-0730 or visit their interactive Web site at www.maybelline.com.
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