Fit Me! Shine-Free Foundation
This fragrance-free stick foundation combines two formulas in one twist-up stick: You get a colorless "Anti-Shine Core," said to be infused with special powders that keep shine at bay, and a gel-cream foundation that comprises the outer core.
Despite the visual and formulary novelty, it turns out that both the inner and outer cores have similar ingredients; each contains powder-like ingredients and waxes that aren't the best for those struggling with clogged pores (the waxes help keep this foundation in stick form). So, in that sense, separating the inner and outer cores is more a marketing angle than a special formula for your skin.
Best for normal to combination skin not prone to breakouts, this glides on as one color, and each shade tends to go on more pink or peach than it looks in the packaging. Pink or peach would normally be a problem, but once blended, the pink-to-peach tones soften (and lighten) to reveal a more neutral, skin-like color. That's great, because Maybelline offers a dozen shades, and the mix includes good options for fair (but not very light) to dark (but not very dark) skin tones. You don't need to avoid any of the shades, but the color change that occurs when blending makes it a little trickier than usual to select the shade that's best for you.
What's particularly impressive about this stick foundation is how easily it blends and how natural it looks. This won't give you medium to full coverage, but it's great for sheer to light coverage and has a silky, surprisingly weightless matte finish.
If you're wondering just how long this keeps excess shine from showing up—it depends. Worn alone (meaning no moisturizer, serum, etc. applied underneath) you're likely to get at least 3 hours of shine control unless you have very oily skin, in which case you can count on an hour or less. Worn with other products, such as a lightweight daytime moisturizer with sunscreen, you can get a couple hours of reliable shine control—more if you set it with powder. That may not sound too impressive, but it's better than many other stick or cream-to-powder foundations.
Our first gel stick foundation with an anti-shine core. Fresh gel foundation blends to a natural matte finish. Lightweight powders in the anti-shine core instantly dissolve excess oil.
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 worldit'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 Maybellines formulas to products from high-end brands that are also owned by parent company LOreal. That just goes to show conscientious shopping can really save you moneywithout 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.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.