From Pat McGrath to Fenty Beauty, more and more beauty brands are offering inclusive and diverse foundation ranges. Here are our favourites…
For me, finding the right foundation has always been a struggle. During my teen years, I more often than not found myself furiously dapping shades across my jawline in Boots, only to be left looking griege or incredibly orange (undertones: it’s a thing, people).
Sadly, there are still some beauty brands that make it difficult for anybody to pop into a shop and pick up a foundation. However, a lot of brands are finally starting to brush up their offering with inclusive and diverse shade ranges.
Here, we run through some of the foundations on the market that have a wide range of shades, as well as impressive formulas that will keep your skin looking flawless all day…
Urban Decay Stay Naked Foundation: 50 shades
Those who avoid foundation tend to cite the same reason: they don’t want their skin to look cakey. But Urban Decay’s Stay Naked Foundation, £31, is all about achieving the opposite.
While it has medium coverage, the matte formula was created to leave your skin looking like real skin. Plus, the lightweight formula feels comfortable to wear.
Stay Naked is available in 50 shades, but don’t feel overwhelmed; Urban Decay has developed an online shade finder to help.
Simply pick your ‘intensity’ (there are nine, spanning across ‘10 ultra fair’ to ‘90 ultra deep’). Next, you’ll be asked to choose one of three ‘mastertones’ (cool, neutral or warm) and then select your undertone (there are seven; pink, blue, green, neutral, yellow, orange of red). And there you have it: the right shade for you.
Try Urban Decay’s online shade finder tool here.
Zoeva Authentik Skin Luminous Foundation: 44 shades
When Zoe Boikou set up Zoeva, she wanted to create a brand that championed and supported women - and since its launch, it has been committed to helping women who have experienced crisis, particularly those who have been affected by domestic violence and cancer.
Boikou brought this approach to her first ever foundation launch: Zoeva Authentik Skin Natural Luminous Foundation. Available in 44 shades, each one has been given an inspirational name to let every customer celebrate their authentic selves. Some of the names include Brave, Daring, Fearless, Soulful and Strong, allowing its users to start their make-up routine with positive affirmations.
As for the formula itself, Authentik Skin has been blended with nourishing rosehip oil for a radiant, yet natural, finish.
Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation: 40 shades
When Rihanna released her Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r foundation to the masses, it became an instant hit. As well as delivering full coverage that doesn’t look cakey, the product is available in a staggering 40 shades (something that was rare to come by at the time of its launch).
It was praised by various women and men for its inclusivity and various shades quickly sold out. In fact, many believe the success of this foundation spurred other brands to take note and follow suit, being coined “the Fenty effect”.
The foundation delivers a matte, long-wear finish that is medium-to-full coverage.
Fenty Beauty by Pro Filt’r Hydrating Longwear Foundation: 50 shades
Following the incredible success of her Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, Rihanna listened to her fans and released a second foundation - this time, focusing on hydration.
Packaged in a mess-free tube with pump applicator, Pro Filt’r Hydrating Longwear Foundation, £27, contains grape seed oil and sodium hyaluronate to keep skin hydrated. Plus, it doesn’t wane to sweat or humidity.
When Fenty Beauty launched, it was praised for releasing a foundation in 40 shades - something that was a rarity at the time. So, fans will be pleased to hear that Hydrating Longwear is available in 50 shades.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Luminous Foundation: 50 shades
Anastasia Beverly Hills may have begun with brows, but the brand has since built upon its solid reputation with cult highlighters, liquid lipsticks and eyeliners. Now, the brand finally has a liquid foundation.
Offering medium to full coverage, but still feeling lightweight on the skin, Luminous Foundation, £43, delivers a fresh and glowing complexion. The foundation is available in 50 shades, split across five categories (fair, light, medium, tan and deep) and three undertones (neutral, cool and warm).
Pat McGrath Skin Fetish Sublime Perfection Foundation: 36 shades
After years of creating incredible looks backstage at endless fashion shows, legendary Pat McGrath caused excitement across the industry when she finally launched her eponymous range Pat McGrath Labs.
In the line-up, there’s Skin Fetish Sublime Perfection Foundation, £61, a sheer to medium coverage foundation. It’s available in 36 shades that sit within five families: light, light medium, medium, medium deep and deep. Once buffed onto the skin (McGrath recommends a brush or wet sponge to achieve her signature backstage skin), its vita-serum complex delivers a smoothing yet radiant finish on skin.
Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Foundation: 44 shades
Charlotte Tilbury is known for the glowing complexions she achieves on her clients and this foundation promises to deliver her signature finish at home.
The Airbrush Flawless Foundation, £34, has a matte and full coverage formula that instantly makes skin appear smoother and even. It also happens to be sweat, humidity and waterproof - making it perfect for sweaty commutes in the summer.
But perhaps the best part about the new launch is its shade range. Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Foundation covers 19 shades, while Light Wonder has 13. However, Airbrush Flawless covers 44 shades, making it the brand’s most inclusive base launch yet. Each shade sits in one of four families (fair, medium, tan and deep) and are divided into different undertones (cool, netural and warm).
Pür 4-in-1 Love Your Selfie Foundation: 100 shadesPür Cosmetics has a foundation that’s available in a staggering 100 shades. Yep, 100. The brand’s 4-in-1 Love Your Selfie Foundation, has a four-in-one (foundation, concealer, skincare and long-wearing) liquid formula that’s full-coverage, vegan and protects skin against blue light.
And it seems Pür has put a lot of thought into covering all skin tones. The product comes in five shade families (light, medium, tan, dark and deep), with 20 options within each category. Each of those 20 shades are then broken down into three types of undertones; golden, pink and neutral. Yes, it sounds overwhelming, but you’re bound to find your perfect shade in the end.
Laura Mercier Flawless Lumière Radiance Perfecting Foundation: 30 shades
This Laura Mercier foundation contains brightening vitamin C and hydrating silver ear mushroom extract to make skin appear radiant.
NYX Cosmetics Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Foundation: 45 shades
This £15 product promises to give you flawless matte coverage that’s transfer-proof. But the most exciting part is that it will be available in 45 shades – a rare thing to come by with drugstore foundations.
MAC Cosmetics Studio Fix Fluid SPF15 Foundation: 64 shades
In need of a natural but matte finish? Look no further. MAC Cosmetic’s Studio Fix, £27, is renowned within the beauty world for its ability to provide full coverage while keeping shine at bay. So, it’s handy that it also comes in an impressive 64 shades.
Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup SPF10: 54 shades
Estee Lauder’s Double Wear foundation is a cult beauty product, and just last year, the brand extended its shade range to a mammoth 54 options.
Aside from its diverse selection, the formula is renowned for its lightweight and long-wearing finish.
Beautyblender Bounce Foundation: 40 shades
Cult beauty tool beautyblender has found its perfect match. Bounce Foundation is a mousse-like formula that dries into a semi-matte finish. But it’s the clever packaging that caught the eye of beauty fans. Squeeze foundation into the bottle’s ‘well’ and dip your sponge into it to pick up product.
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation: 35 shades
Infused with coconut water and hyaluronic acid to boost skin, Born This Way’s oil-free formula comes in 35 shades and leaves skin looking naturally fresh.
Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF15: 25 shades
Bobbi Brown’s Skin Foundation does just what it says on the tin; it provides a natural skin-like finish that can be built up for more coverage. There are 25 shades available that cover “extra light” to “deep” skin tones.
Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation: 45 shades
Lancome’s best-selling liquid foundation, Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation comes in a large 45 shades.
The product was created with specially-coated pigments that maintain consistent PH levels with skin.
Clinique Even Better Makeup SPF15: 48 shades
Aimed at those with hyper-pigmentation, this popular Clinique foundation works to even your skin tone. It’s available in 48 shades and has a light formula that aims to prevent further hyper-pigmentation.
Huda Beauty #FauxFilter Foundation: 30 shades
If you prefer a matte finish, this Huda Beauty foundation is for you. Available in 30 shades, a small amount will make skin appear smoother and even.
Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick: 32 shades
Known for its full coverage finish but lightweight formula, these Hourglass stick foundations provide flawless skin across 32 shades.
Cover FX Power Play Foundation: 40 shades
Available in 40 shades, this Cover FX foundation protects skin against damaging environmental factors and stays put all day.
Main image: Fenty Beauty