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The Foundation Series: Best Drugstore Foundation Dupes P1

Look Beautiful & Save Money



Foundation serves as the cornerstone of your makeup routine, making it crucial to achieve perfection. While high-end luxury foundations deliver exceptional results, they often come at a premium price.


It's truly amazing how many nearly identical or similar drugstore foundation dupes are available at a fraction of the cost of their high-end counterparts.

When you break down high-end foundations to their core formula and ingredients in comparison to a dupe, it becomes evident that, in most instances, you're essentially paying for the packaging and the brand name.

And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that! After all, who can resist the allure of beautifully designed packaging, housing a superb product from a reputable luxury brand?

However, there are those moments when you're looking for a product that performs just as impressively but at a significantly lower price point, even if it means sacrificing some aesthetic appeal.




Below, you'll find a curated collection featuring some of the most popular and beloved luxury foundations alongside their finest drugstore foundation counterparts.

It is my hope that these recommendations will help you save while still achieving your desired look.


Now, let's explore some of the top drugstore foundation dupes.



High-End Foundation: Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Makeup

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: Revlon ColorStay Full Cover Makeup



Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Makeup is a cult favourite for a good reason. This foundation is the US’s #1 prestige brand foundation, thanks to its full-coverage matte finish that DOES NOT BUDGE all day. It sets quickly, so it should be applied with a damp makeup sponge if you want to blend it well. Double Wear, a long-wear foundation, is waterproof and heat-proof. It comes in a whopping 55 shades to work with various cool, neutral, and warm skin tones.


Even though Revlon ColorStay Full Cover Makeup has a thick whipped texture and is not liquid like Estee Lauder Double Wear, this foundation really COVERS and does it with a long-wearing matte finish. A little goes a long way with this foundation. Unlike Double Wear, its whipped texture blends easily. What makes it a drugstore foundation dupe for Estee Lauder Double Wear is its excellent lasting coverage that easily hides flaws, discoloration, and uneven skin texture.

It also works well to keep oil at bay. The only drawback is the 16 available shades, which is much less than Double Wear. I love this Revlon foundation, and it’s one of my go-to full coverage drugstore foundations. This is the ideal full coverage drugstore foundation for oily skin.

Great coverage, a good color match, and an affordable drugstore price!

High-End Foundation: NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation



NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation is a highly pigmented liquid foundation that provides a natural finish and lasts for up to 16 hours. This oil-free foundation has a matte, luminous finish that is easily buildable and blends easily.

Flexible polymers and treated pigments move with the skin. Just one drop yields very lightweight yet complete coverage. Tone Correcting Technology neutralizes discoloration, redness, and dullness.





L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation will provide a demi-matte finish and up to 24 hours of wear that comes in a lightweight liquid formula. This foundation will smooth the skin and easily hide uneven skin tone, blemishes, and other imperfections. This weightless NARS foundation dupe is medium coverage. It comes in 28 shades vs. NARS 20 shades. Like NARS, it is oil-free and will provide up to 24 hours of shine control, plus it is transfer resistant. This foundation is an affordable alternative to NARS



All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation that will provide lightweight matte coverage and won’t sink into pores.



High-End Foundation: It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF 50+

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: Maybelline Dream Urban Cover Flawless Coverage Foundation Makeup, SPF 50


It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF 50+ is the #1 CC cream in the US. This CC cream provides full coverage, hydration, and the benefits of an anti-aging serum. Potent active ingredients include hydrolyzed collagen, peptides, niacin, hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and vitamins. The CC+ cream improves the look of dark circles, redness, acne scarring, fine lines, wrinkles, and uneven skin tone.

Plus, it contains physical sunscreen of SPF 50+ that will work for even sensitive skin. The finish is natural and flawless.

What is a CC cream, you ask? CC stands for colour correcting cream, colour corrector cream, or complexion corrector cream, so a CC cream will provide multiple benefits to your skin. These benefits include higher coverage than a BB “beauty balm” or “blemish balm” cream, but usually less than a full coverage foundation. CC creams often come with anti-aging benefits and sunscreen protection.


Maybelline Dream Urban Cover Flawless Coverage Foundation Makeup SPF 50 is a lightweight full coverage foundation that contains a broad-spectrum SPF 50 (chemical sunscreen) and antioxidants to protect from damage caused by UV rays, pollution, and other environmental stressors.

Maybelline Dream Urban Cover is not available in as many shades as the best-selling It Cosmetics CC Cream. It is not as full-coverage as It Cosmetics, but it is buildable to medium coverage.

The consistency is a little thicker, and the coverage is slightly more matte, but the result is very similar: medium coverage and long wear with sunscreen protection. It Cosmetics has many more skincare actives, so some of those ingredients may contribute to its expensive price tag. I don’t mind keeping my skincare actives in my skincare routine anyway, so Maybelline Dream Urban Cover may be worth a try if you feel the same.









High-End Foundation: Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: L’Oreal True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup


Inspired by charmeuse silk, Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation is luxury makeup at its finest. Luminous Silk is a weightless, buildable, medium-coverage foundation.

It uses Armani’s Micro–fil technology to provide a gorgeous glow and skin-like finish. This foundation has won countless awards, and the price tag is steep! This is the most expensive foundation I’ve ever purchased. It’s hard to rationalize spending so much for an ounce of foundation, but it is unlike any other foundation I’ve tried.

(If you want to give it a try without spending full price, you can purchase the mini size of 0.6 oz. Still expensive, but less than the full price.) It leaves such a beautiful airbrush finish and wears extremely well. But is there a dupe?


L’Oreal True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup is a medium coverage foundation that provides a radiant luminous finish.

It contains vitamins C and E, which are powerful antioxidants that improve clarity and skin tone. Liquid Light Technology delivers an instant glow. Unlike Armani Luminous Silk, this foundation has SPF 20 in the form of 3% octinoxate. L’Oreal True Match Lumi Healthy Luminous Makeup is the closest foundation to Luminous Silk that I’ve tried.


While the formula is different, and there are only 15 available shades vs Luminous Silk’s 40 shades, this foundation provides a similar finish and coverage to Luminous Silk. Although not an exact dupe, it’s lightweight and has a natural finish. With a low drugstore price tag, it is an attractive alternative to the high-end Luminous Silk from Armani.



High-End Foundation: Dermablend Flawless Creator Liquid Foundation

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: NYX Total Control Pro Drop Foundation

Dermablend Flawless Creator Liquid Foundation Drops is a highly pigmented foundation that is water-free and oil-free. It provides full coverage and a natural finish with minimal ingredients. It’s a favourite for its lightweight feel and is buildable without getting cakey. The formula’s 33% concentrated pigments provide customizable coverage for all skin types. Plus, it’s non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog pores and cause breakouts or worsen acne.


NYX Total Control Pro Drop Foundation, a best-selling vegan foundation, is a velvet matte dropper foundation.

Like Dermablend, this liquid foundation allows you to customize coverage by choosing how many drops you apply to your skin. It is super lightweight, provides a skin-like finish, and lasts up to 12 hours with transferring.


Also, like Dermablend, it’s lightweight, and a little goes a long way. (That’s probably why the bottle is so small). At less than half the price of Dermablend, this liquid dropper foundation is worth checking out. Related Post: Full Coverage Drugstore Foundations for Oily Skin



High-End Foundation: Fenty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: CoverGirl TruBlend Matte Made Liquid Foundation


Fenty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation is a medium-to-full coverage long-wear foundation that leaves a soft matte finish on your skin.

This buildable liquid foundation is oil-free and formulated with climate-adaptive technology which makes it resistant to sweat and humidity.

The lightweight formula melts into your skin for a natural-looking finish. It isn’t too matte or too dewy, which makes it look like real skin. Plus, it won’t clog your pores and cause breakouts or worsen acne. The foundation is available in a HUGE range of 50 shades to work with a variety of skin tones and shades.


CoverGirl TruBlend Matte Made Liquid Foundation is formulated with flexi-hold technology to create a flexible film on the skin while providing, like Fenty, a soft matte finish that never looks cakey or heavy on the skin.

The foundation offers buildable coverage and absorbs excess oil and helps to reduce the look of pores courtesy of mattifying powders.

The coverage lasts for up to 12 hours and is transfer-resistant so you have full coverage that won’t budge all day.

This Fenty dupe comes in a wide range of 40 shades to work with Light, Medium, Tan, and Deep skin tones.



High-End Foundation: Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation


Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation is a lightweight mousse foundation that provides a natural matte finish and controls oil without drying out your skin. It is formulated with Amazonian clay for longer wear and vitamin E, an emollient and anti-inflammatory ingredient. Mineral pigments soften the skin. This foundation is beloved for its flawless finish and its ability to keep oil at bay, all while smoothing the look of fine lines, wrinkles, and pores. It easily camouflages dark spots, redness, and other imperfections for an even-looking complexion without creasing or caking. It comes in 46 shades and lasts up to 16 hours.


Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation is also a mousse foundation with a lightweight texture formulated to control shine while leaving a matte finish on the skin. This full-coverage foundation also softens your skin while magnifying your complexion.

The Rimmel foundation comes in 24 shades as opposed to Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation’s 40 shades. This Rimmel foundation offers a nice selection of shades for cool, neutral, and warm skin tones. Also, there is no sunscreen protection in this Rimmel formula. But the coverage and oil control give Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation a run for its money. The Rimmel foundation is so cheap, so for just a few dollars, you can give it a try without it breaking the bank.



High-End Foundation: MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation SPF 15

Drugstore Foundation Dupe: Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation

MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation SPF 15 is a lightweight matte foundation formulated for shine control and up to 24 hours of wear. Since it is so lightweight, it is easily buildable from medium to full coverage. It comes in a fantastic range of 63 shades, from Light to Deep Dark. This formula helps to reduce the look of pores for a smoother complexion yet won’t cause acne. This foundation comes with broad-spectrum SPF 15 protection and is ideal for all skin types, especially oily skin.



Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation is also lightweight and works to magnify and refine pores. It is buildable and leaves a natural finish. It contains micro-powders to control shine and create a blurred seamless complexion.

This foundation dupe is non-comedogenic and contains clays to help absorb oil and keep your skin matte. Ideal for all-day wear, Fit Me Matte + Poreless is an oil-free formula that comes in 40 shades. Per a Maybelline consumer study, it works for a large range of skin tones and fits 97% of women. While it doesn’t come in as many shades as MAC Studio Fix Fluid, its lightweight blurring coverage and affordable price give MAC a run for its money.



 


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MORAG STEYN   

MAKEUP ARTIST & SESSION STYLIST

SERVING GLOBALLY
SOUTH AFRICA BASED, SEASONING IN INDIA, DUBAI & EUROPE 

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