Beauty Road Test: Prescriptives Custom Blend Foundation

I’m like the Goldilocks of Makeup: This foundation is too yellow, this one is too white, this one is too chalky, etc.
Publish date:
December 26, 2012
shoppables, foundation, skin, Prescriptives, custom made

As we have discussed before, I have a particularly interesting racial background, which means my skin isn’t exactly, shall we say, “cosmetics company normal.” I have gold and yellow and pink and peach and all sorts of rainbow hues that usually die under regular foundations.

I’m like the Goldilocks of Makeup: This foundation is too yellow, this one is too white, this one is too chalky, etc.

Let’s also add to that the fact that I don’t particularly love wearing foundation. I’m all for it for the first 15 minutes, but then my skin starts to itch underneath it. My pores start to essentially spit the product out. I scratch at my face like I'm in some kind of horror movie. But I wear foundation anyway, because I do camera work and I try not to look dead while people are filming.

So, when Jane and company asked me to test Prescriptives Custom Blend Foundation, I was totally game -- but with a tiny eye roll in the back of my head. I don’t LIKE foundation, I said to myself. It’s just not my THING. But I have to say, if you’ve got tough-to-match skin or you have a love-hate relationship with the Quest for Foundation, I’d encourage you to give this whole Prescriptives Custom Blend thingy a go.

I'm a long-time fan of Prescriptives since the 90s, when I found my Holy Trinity of Beauty from the brand -- Spice lipliner, Brick lipstick and Calyx perfume -- but custom-blended foundation had somehow escaped me. I signed up for the Prescriptives Custom Blend Video Chat Service and arrived with my prerequisite, which was an accurate photo of my face in good lighting that showed what my skin color looked like. The service is free, BTW.

I was greeted by Nikki, who was incredibly cheery and very knowledgeable. We walked through what I would like to deem as the Most Thorough Examination of Foundation Ever. Did I like wearing it? (Not usually.) What were my main concerns? (Not looking dead in photographs, uneven complexion, drying, peeling like lead-based paint.) What were my complaints about foundations I had used? (I scratch them off like I’m on a bad acid trip, they somehow never match.)

Nikki and I chatted for a quick 10 minutes about what I wanted from my foundation, and if there were any skincare concerns I wanted it to address (fine lines, wrinkles, acne, late car payments -- well, maybe not the last one).

After my video chat session, I received an email from Nikki explaining that, based on our conversation, she prescribed a custom-blended “recipe” for me of Medium Coverage with Moisture (because my skin is Sahara-Desert-dry) and a Candlelight Finish (kind of like that Barbra Streisand/Barbra Walters cheesecloth-lighting effect). She sent over a link to the Prescriptives site with instructions to create a profile and enter my recipe.

After my recipe was registered, it was saved in my profile so there’s a record for reordering. She also sent over a powder recipe/custom-blend, but I’m starting with the foundation first. Baby steps, people.

The package arrived pretty quickly using standard shipping, which was SUPER FAST considering it’s the holidays. There it was: my custom-blended foundation. I looked at it warily for about three hours and then broke into it to give it a go. Because I like writing for xoJane and, you know, deadlines and all.

And damned if it wasn’t everything Darlin’ Nikki said it would be. Luscious, lit-from-within coverage that added moisture. I wore it out around the apartment. No scratching. I wore it out to events. People told me my skin looked really good. I got home that night and forgot I was wearing it. Yep, this stuff is the real deal.

The benefits of this supercalifragialisticexpealaawesome foundation? First of all, it goes on like silk. It’s so smooth and hydrating that you actually use LESS of it when you apply (which is the sign of a good hydrating formula). It covers evenly, it illuminates, it gives a flawless finish. I mean, it’s the Holy Grail of Foundations, folks.

SO, gals and gents who rock foundation coverage, let it be known that I have deemed Prescriptives Custom Blend Foundation fabulous and worth every penny you will pay for it (foundations come in at $65). That might sound like a lot, but just think of all the money you’ll save when you don’t have to buy foundations that suck all year.

Are you a foundation lover or hater? Have you ever had a hard time matching your foundation and, if so, have you ever tried a custom-blend? Let’s discuss in the comments below.