If only I were as selective about the food I drunkenly order at 2 AM as I am about my foundation. My ridiculously high standards for the latter were set the moment I slathered on my very first layer of the It Cosmetics CC+ Cream With SPF 50 last year; since then, I've been weighing my base makeup options more seriously than my Seamless orders.
Maybe it's because, unlike French fries, foundation is so easy to get wrong. Formulas can be too greasy, too sheer, too matte, or too cake-y — and using it during the wrong season can either make it melt onto your shirt collar or flake off entirely. But when you find the right one, as I did with It Cosmetics and now First Aid Beauty's Hello Fab Triple Protection Skin Tint, it can feel just as satisfying as the perfect blind date that makes the countless bad ones worth it.
What makes it so good? It's like tinted moisturizer on steroids: The silky formula is lightweight enough to wear every day, packed with mineral SPF 30 and antioxidants, and melts into skin like a drop of the beloved Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation (which is nearly twice the price). When I first tried it, it was like I wasn't actually wearing anything on my face at all — yet somehow my shadows were gone, my pores were smaller, and my skin tone was even.
But it's also really buildable. On days my acne scars are especially visible, I just liberally squeeze the formula onto a Beautyblender, bounce the sponge across my cheeks and chin, and then dust on a light veil of powder on top for a going-out look. Of course, because my mother likes to remind me that nothing in the world is ever "perfect," I do have one complaint: The shade range is limited. There are only four options available, so if you have super-fair skin, like I do in the winter, or a darker complexion, it might be hard to build up to a fuller-coverage look. (One thin layer, however, blended in just as well on me as it did my uber-tan friend over the weekend, so that's promising.)
Despite that, it's earned a permanent spot in my foundation rotation. Now if only it could take the phone out of my hands after a few glasses of wine...
First Aid Beauty Hello Fab Triple Protection Skin Tint SPF 30, $34, available exclusively at Sephora.