READY SPF 20 Foundation
READY SPF 20 Foundation is the fragrance-free pressed-powder foundation alternative to bareMinerals' original loose-powder foundation. Right off the bat, this pressed format is much easier to use than the company's original mineral makeup.
Housed in a sleek black mirrored compact, and advertised as providing a "108% increase in skin hydration," it's no wonder that this foundation is getting so much attention—but is this foundation all that it's chalked up to be? Not quite, but it's still worthwhile for some.
Despite the claims, this is not a suitable option for those with dry skin because absorbent (read "drying") ingredients comprise the majority of the formula, and simply overpower the few emollient (read "hydrating") ingredients that are included. A dry-finish powder foundation like this is about as hydrating as sand in the desert!
On the plus side, those with oily to very oily skin will do best with this powder foundation. It keeps excess oil at bay while providing broad-spectrum, mineral-based sun protection and sheer to medium coverage. The generous shade selection has workable options for very light to very dark skin in both neutral and warm tones—and the darker shades don't look ashy.
Note:Although this foundation provides broad-spectrum sun protection on its own, you must apply it liberally and evenly to get the stated level of protection. A sheer or spot application will not provide the amount of sun protection the label indicates. If you’re not likely to apply this foundation liberally, we recommend applying it over a moisturizer with sunscreen rated SPF 15 or greater and setting your foundation with a pressed powder rated SPF 15 or greater.
- Broad-spectrum sun protection from gentle mineral actives.
- Absorbent finish helps keep oily shine in check.
- Shade range complements most skin tones.
- Not hydrating as claimed; too drying except for those with oily to very oily skin.
Bare Escentuals At-a-Glance
Makeup is what this San Francisco-based cosmetics line is primarily about, and they use the pure and natural marketing angle to entice consumers. Founded in 1976 by Diane Ranger, who left the company in the early '90s Bare Escentuals was one of the first brands to introduce the concept of loose powder foundation. Since then, they have moved beyond it to include liquid foundations and tinted moisturizers and an ever expanding line of color cosmetics as well as skincare products.
The products are sold in most Sephora boutiques and Ulta stores, though the full selection of skincare products is most often found at the Bare Escentuals freestanding stores scattered throughout the United States.
We should note that loose powder makeup does take some practice to get the hang of, yet there is no denying that this type of foundation has its fan base. There is a lot to love about Bare Escentuals, even if mineral makeup isn't your thing (especially their price ranges, which have remained affordable in comparison to many of their neighbors at Sephora).
Strengths: Good makeup removers; a few well-formulated powders with SPF; some nice eyeshadows and impressive mascaras; some impressive foundations; several elegant brush options; not too expensive.
Weaknesses: Some of the loose powder products have texture and finish concerns; some of the skincare contain potentially problematic ingredients.
For more information about Bare Escentuals, call 1.888.795.4747 or visit www.bareescentuals.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.