While I typically don’t purchase products from celebrity beauty lines or products, for no particular reason and certainly not to avoid them generally, I had heard rave reviews from countless bloggers, vloggers, and even friends praising Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty Foundation line, and wanted to test it out and review, to see if it was worthy of the hype.
The first feature I noticed and really enjoy about the branding is the numerical color names of different shades.
With a lot of other foundation products on the market, I notice often the first color is deemed a very complimentary name (i.e. “Radiant,” or “Flawless”), and as shades increase in pigment, the branding seems to devolve into names after food items or fruits.
While this is a luxury item, the price is definitely still very moderate compared to many in the category, making it more accessible and available to a larger demographic. With 40 different shades, specific to undertone as well, there’s variety and plenty to choose from.
It’s formulated without any parabens and delivers a soft matte finish with long wear coverage, so it stays on well throughout the day.
I definitely found the Fenty Foundation felt very gentle and did not irritate sensitive skin, and offered a nearly identical color match. It feels quite smooth and soft upon application, the the finish is matte without being drying.
I had used a competitor foundation from a different brand, sold at a higher price point, for years without deviating, and never thought I could find a foundation that would perform better or offer such a close color match, but after trying out Fenty Beauty’s formulation, I finally discovered a higher quality product, and have a new go-to daily staple. It offers medium but buildable coverage that feels highly breathable and is never greasy, heavy, or sticky on the skin.
It’s suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin, and while some reviewers mention the product feels drying, this is not something I noticed even with a dry skin type, when using adequate moisturizer and a non-drying cleanser. It’s formulated with high-quality ingredients and did not break out my skin, which is prone to blemishes when dabbling with new foundation and powder products. It never seems to cake up on the skin, and never clings to any dry areas (a problem I’ve found in the past with many other products in the category).
This review covers some background on Fenty Beauty by Rihanna, as well as some key positives and negatives to bear in mind prior to any purchase, and reviews the liquid matte soft formulation.
Review: Fenty Beauty Foundation
The liquid foundation has a matte finish and features a long-wear formulation, free of any parabens or chemical additives, and is suitable for all skin types and complexions, including sensitive skin.
It doesn’t feel drying or cakey, does not cling to any dry patches, and is sold in 40 different shades that are specific to undertones. It looks great in natural light and provides a nearly identical color match to the skin, while offering the additional benefit of buildable coverage and coverage for any breakouts and redness you may experience. I typically steer away from celebrity-endorsed cosmetics and skincare, but this product is truly comparable to any other luxury skincare or cosmetics item you would find in the store, and comes at a more modest price than competitor products, but with better ease of use and additional benefits.
Prior to this I never thought I would abandon my go-to foundation, but Fenty Foundation is solid, and sold for less money that my previous foundation.
It’s difficult to find many negatives in using it, aside from the fact that it does not come at drugstore prices.
If you are comparison shopping and want to check out reviews we’ve done of other foundation lines, check out our articles on Loreal Paris (for a drugstore brand version), Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation, NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, and Milk Makeup Blur Liquid Matte Foundation.
For me it was definitely worth the investment and it offered really solid value, as well as longevity. It definitely lasted longer than previous formulations I have tried, and while this varies as coverage is highly buildable, I did not find the need to use much for medium coverage daily use (about 2-3 pumps are highly effective in reaching all areas of the face). Some reviewers did feel the product was drying, so if you do have quite dry skin using a primer or moisturizer prior to use is advisable, and because I generally apply a serum or cream before using foundation products, this was not a personal experience.
Additionally, if large pore size is a concern to you, you may find a higher coverage product more suitable, as many felt that pore size seemed enhanced following use (again, I did not have this experience, but others may). Overall, I received compliments when using it and certainly felt it offered enough coverage, great hold, and was even sweat proof.
Those with oily or combination complexions will appreciate that the Fenty Foundation product can aid in oil control, providing a sleek matte finish with no shine or shimmer. It feels great to support the company mission of further industry inclusivity, with respect to varying skin tones and complexions. I’ve certainly heard friends and colleagues comment on the difficulty in finding a suitable color match for their unique tone, and a lack of understanding or inclusivity from the industry at large.
Noticing the color labels on my previous foundation, which bear names in reference to specific Countries, I began to look for other options from brands and companies that seemed more sensitive to the issue.
Fenty Beauty Foundation: Pros and Cons
Positives and Negatives
Overall it was difficult to find many negatives with the Fenty Foundation, I really enjoyed the product and found great benefits to use. I would prefer the inclusion of an SPF, but luckily have a day cream to pair with the product for UVA/UVB protection.
If you’re looking for a good SPF moisturizer, we recommend Malin and Goetz’s SPF 30 Face Moisturizer.
The only bittersweet part of this is it needing to come from a celebrity’s voice (whose music and style we all adore), before it pops up on anyones radar, but whatever way the message can be spread seems to be having very positive results.
Here’s a look at some key pros and cons:
- At $30, while this product is still a splurge for most, I found it very reasonable given how long the product lasts, its formulation/ingredients, and it’s certainly still in the luxury cosmetics category, so compared to other competitor lines, for it’s use and efficacy the cost seems reasonable
- Elegant packaging and design, with a sleek aesthetic
- Minimal product is needed for use, which helps give the product some longevity, only about 2-3 pumps are needed for a full application
- Airbrushed natural aesthetic, with nearly identical color match (I found it matched my slightly fair skin quite well, and other reviewers with darker skin tones and olive complexions felt the color match was also very good)
- The coverage really lasts all day, is sweat proof, and never comes off or smudges
- For those with oily or combination skin, the foundation can support oil-control as well as sweating
- Foundation did not cause any breakouts even with sensitive, mildly acne-prone skin, and other reviewers mentioned the same (even those with more moderate-severe breakouts)
- It feels quite lightweight and breathable, but still offers a long-wear smudge-proof hold throughout the day
- The company has transparent practices and a mission of being more inclusive to those of all races and demographics
- Product is free of parabens, additives, and sulfates
- Suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin
- Natural finish, matte aesthetic, does not look caked on or cling to the skin
- Medium coverage that is highly buildable and offers plenty of versatility depending on individual preferences
- Eliminates the appearance of any circles under the eye (some may elect to pair with a concealer) and conceals breakouts, redness, and any other flaws on the skin, rather than enhancing their appearance
- Suitable for travel and quite lightweight in physical size
- Cruelty-free company: company does not test on any animals when formulating products, or use any animal product in it’s formulations or manufacturing processes
- Based on the reviews a lot of women (and men) felt the product helped increase a certain sense of self-esteem, and offered a solution to a problem they had experienced in the past in finding shades with strong matches in color and suitable undertones, unique to their own skin tone
- This definitely does not feel like a product that’s become popular just due to the founders celebrity or music, it definitely seems like a luxury beauty item and surpasses competitors in the category (for a lower price), in its own right
- While I did not experience this with dry skin, some reviewers felt that the product was slightly drying
- Some reviewers felt the appearance of pore size was more noticeable, while I did not notice this, it’s important to bear in mind the coverage is buildable but still medium, so in this case if you have very large pores and this is an issue, a full coverage product may be a wiser investment
- Does not contain SPF (this was the only setback in comparison to the previous foundation I had been using)
Fenty Beauty Money-Back Guarantee
If you are in any way dissatisfied with the product or its ingredients (in terms of skincare, shade, or texture), the manufacturer offers a full money-back guarantee for the entire purchase price, a policy which favors the new consumer.
The same policy exists if any redness, irritation, allergy, or general skin reaction occurs following application, or if you feel the product is drying to the skin. First-time users of the product may have concerns alleviated by this policy, especially as it can be difficult to gauge the most suitable shade for first-time application (although the information provided from the manufacturer is highly accurate and in accordance with how your skin looks in natural light). If you happen to purchase the wrong shade, you can easily exchange the product even if it has been opened.
The collection features so many different shades, making it suitable for different skin colors as well as skin types.
Fenty Beauty Foundation: Worth It?
Ultimately, I absolutely loved Fenty Beauty, saw great benefits with a flawless matte finish that was nearly identical in terms of color match both indoors and in natural light, and will absolutely be repurchasing the item in favor of my previous foundation.
We often get attached to products and foundations in particular as go-to items and feel we wouldn’t want to make changes or make due without them, but this was a change I very much appreciate, and one inspired by a vision of inclusivity.
It’s quite a small step to take in what is a much broader and more serious social issue, in terms of inequality and the trickle-down effect, but it’s important to remain mindful of subtle ways to improve standards ad practices, and small asides you may not notice without someone pointing it out.
The way a beauty company names its products often says a lot about how they feel about you, so it’s nice to stay mindful, and support kinder visions. I was thrilled to discover this product is really excellent in its own right, it doesn’t at all feel like fans of Rihanna are simply purchasing this because of her talent, and she evidently has talent in the cosmetics industry as well.
Fenty Beauty Foundation performs better and offers additional benefits in comparison to more expensive products I have tried from competing lines, and with a generous money-back guarantee option, I would highly recommend testing it out if you have not tried it yet!