I’ve actually never thought about this until now. I’m quite particular with the ingredients of my skin care products, but with my makeup, especially my foundation, well, not so much. Are you?
If you’re as clueless as me, keep reading. I’ve gathered some information on what our liquid foundations are made of and I didn’t realize it’s more important to be aware about these ingredients than you think!
I personally prefer a liquid foundation over powder foundation because I tend to blend it out better on my skin. And with a beauty sponge, there’s a less chance for the product to cake on my skin because it absorbs the excess product. With powder foundation, I tend to just pat layer after layer until I end up looking somewhat like a cheesecake. Not pretty.
What is considered a liquid foundation?
Well, a liquid foundation or your base makeup is not just called foundation nowadays. Now we have BB creams, CC creams, and tinted moisturizers. But even though they stand for different things, they all do the same thing – they serve as your base makeup.
In fact, most foundations or base makeup are composed of the same basic ingredients. Additives here and there will be different though.
Ingredients like vitamins, peptides, sunscreen, and botanical extracts play a role in the effectiveness of skin benefits, durability, pigmentation, and finish of your base makeup.
For example, BB creams and tinted moisturizers may have as little as 2% pigmentation for a sheer and lightweight finish, while moderate- to full-coverage foundations usually have 15% or more.
What is the science behind a liquid foundation?
It is science but not rocket science.
As I’ve said, liquid foundations tend to blend better and glide smoothly. This makes it distribute pigments on the skin evenly thanks to water-in-silicone emulsions. The term simply refers to silicone compounds that are mixed in with water. Mixed, but not dissolved.
Silicone derivatives feel soft, silky, and slick. This is the reason why you get a smooth, streak-free coverage that feels and looks like your second skin. These ingredients are also used to create waterproof and long-wearing formulas that don’t feel oily or greasy.
Pigments—like minerals titanium dioxides or iron oxides—are usually coated with silicone derivatives as well. This is why they disperse evenly in the water and silicone base of the liquid foundation formula.
Have you checked the list of ingredients on the back of your liquid foundation? The first ingredient is usually water and then followed by a silicone derivative such as cyclopentasiloxane, dimethicone, or phenyl trimethicone.
However, even though most liquid foundations nowadays are made up of water-in-silicone emulsions, oil-in-water formulas still exist. They work similarly to moisturizers.
What are the other ingredients?
Volatile Ingredients – These ingredients only stay fluid until you’ve built and blended your foundation. They help set the foundation and create a non-greasy finish that is long-wearing.
Look for: cyclomethicone, isododecane, isohexadecane
Mineral Clays – Absorb oil to deliver a finish that feels dry or matte to the touch. Matte and oil-absorbing foundations are usually highly concentrated with these.
Look for: quaternium-90 bentonite, kaolin, Amazonian clay, silica
Emollients and Humectants – Hydrate the skin by absorbing water molecules from the air (humectants) or keeping in and maintaining skin’s natural moisture (emollients).
Look for: squalane, glycerin, capric or caprylic triglyceride
Illuminating Powders – Reflect light to make the face look more dewy and brighter. They add radiance and blur out imperfections in HD formulas. They usually help to create a flawless look for HD cameras but can give you flashback in flash photography.
Look for: mica, oxychloride, bismuth
Preservatives – protect the foundation from being contaminated by microbes
Look for: parabens, phenoxyethanol, food-grade potassium sorbate
Knowledge is power. Hope this helps!
Subscribe To Our Newsletter
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.