I Love This New Kosas Foundation, But It’s Complicated

Kosas is one of those cool, if-you-know-you-know kind of makeup brands. The vibe is less bare face, more tinted skin care. Given the aesthetic trend of using less makeup — or at least, looking like you're wearing less makeup — it's no big shock that the brand has taken off, almost simultaneously with the fall of Glossier.
The fresh, minimalist ethos is one thing to love about Kosas — the other? The really, really good products. There's the tinted face oil, which our team of beauty editors could not stop telling our friends about for a solid six months. There's also a tinted lip balm that I keep in two different bags. Then, the concealer, which in its two years of existence, has won awards, become a noted staple in so many TikTok tutorials, and topped Sephora's best-seller list, right up there with the ubiquitous Nars creamy.
Now, Kosas has just dropped a brand-new foundation: The Revealer Skin-Improving Foundation SPF 25. Brand founder Sheena Yaitanes says that the formula draws direct inspiration from the Revealer concealer, which is to say, if you like that, you're likely going to vibe with this.
Kosas Revealer Concealer & Revealer Foundation
The best part about the Kosas concealer is that it's been designed as an eye cream in a concealer, so I find that it brightens my under-eye darkness better than any makeup I've tried. With this new, corresponding foundation, there's a similar hybrid thing happening with the skin-care ingredients I look for in my serums and moisturizers built right into the formula. There's niacinamide, olive-derived squalane, peptides, hyaluronic acid, and a reef-safe mineral sunscreen SPF 25.
In my experience, I will still do my morning skin-care routine, vitamin C and hyaluronic acid serums followed by moisturizer, then I go in with Kosas concealer under my eyes and a pump of the new foundation (I wear shade 190, light medium with neutral yellow undertones), on the back of my hand, and then all over my face. The result is brighter skin that's close to pore-less. It's really all that I want and need in a foundation. I recently tried the Charlotte Tilbury foundation, and I prefer this one; it's more lightweight and has an SPF.
On the point of shade range: The grid of 36 swatches shows a slight lack of nuance in the darker skin tones. Or, greater nuance within the lighter shades. But Yaitanes informed me that she worked with makeup artists Alana Wright and Nia Joy from Black Beauty Roster, a community committed to diversifying professional representation in the beauty industry, to ensure the range of foundation shades is inclusive. It's an improvement, for sure. Kosas faced criticism a few years ago when the Tinted Face Oil launched with ten "fluid" shades (they've since expanded to 16).
Of course, it's a brand-new foundation, so we can't predict how it will be received across the board. I will say, early reviews are rave, and I'm thrilled I was able to find my perfect shade and undertone. Foundation matching is a pain — that's universal — but it's worth it for your everyday foundation. Mine happens to match my concealer.
At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

More from Makeup

R29 Original Series