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The best foundation sticks to explore right now for your makeup vanity

Makeup foundations have evolved widely and immensely over the past few years. With different formulations, types and coverage options available, there’s an ocean-wide pool of choices for everyone to pick their favourite from. While the world keeps debating over powder and liquid foundations, the one that’s been a silent scene-stealer is a foundation stick.

A favourite of makeup novices and enthusiasts alike, a foundation stick is one of the best makeup products to have and for reasons more than one. Extremely easy to carry around and mess-free, they are highly favoured for their multi-tasking prowess. From lending you a stunning and flawless base makeup to easily doubling-up as a contour stick or a concealer, to hiding visible blemishes and spots, these foundations accurately uphold the ‘one product for all’ criteria. And let’s not sidestep how budget-friendly and time-saving that is!

These handy sticks are undeniably super purse-friendly and perfect for on-the-go application and touch-ups without the hassle of carrying a brush or a sponge along every time. All you’ve got to do is swipe the product across your face and lightly blend it with your fingertips.

And if this ease of doing makeup is what you desire then a foundation stick is what you should add to your makeup stash. However, don’t let their reputation of being cakey and chalky (that’s based on old formulations) stop you from trying these because stick foundations today are equally at par with their liquid and powder counterparts.

If you’ve been wondering whether or not to try a foundation stick, then take this list of some of the most coveted ones as a sign for you to go ahead and do so right away.

Here are some of the best foundation sticks for you to choose from

A cream foundation that lends a soft matte and smooth finish, the Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick is one of the best out there. It features a nourishing complex that creates a flawless base without any chalkiness. It offers a sheer medium to full buildable coverage that’s as natural as it can get. It smoothly doubles-up as a concealer that reduces the appearance of imperfections.

Image: Courtesy Nordstrom

With the look and feel of a second skin, the Sugar foundation stick is a multi-purpose product that has a long-wear formula and offers a full coverage for upto 12 hours. It effortlessly and softly blends into your skin to lend you a stunning base devoid of any blemishes and dark spots. While it also conceals discolouration, this foundation stick can also be used for highlighting and contouring. It comes with a built-in brush that ensures easy blending, even on-the-go.

Image: Courtesy Sugar Cosmetics

Lending a medium to full coverage in a stunning matte finish, the Full Cover Makeup Stick is a concealer-plus-foundation. Enriched with jojoba oil, vitamin E and shea butter to provide moisturisation, the Colorbar foundation stick evens out skin tone and masks away all blemishes and dark circles without settling into fine lines. The creamy formula also has broad spectrum SPF 30 and is made without any parabens or mineral oils.

Image: Courtesy Colorbar

Delivering a natural matte finish for upto 24 hours is the M.A.C foundation stick that not just lends a flawless base but also provides hydration. Ideal for all skin types, this foundation gives a medium yet buildable coverage that doesn’t crease or streak away. It comes in 33 shades and makes for an ideal on-the-go foundation.

Image: Courtesy M.A.C Cosmetics

Perfect for achieving a real skin-like coverage anytime, anyplace is the Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick that’s ideal for all skin tones and types. It’s a weightless formula delivering medium-to-full coverage and can also be used as a spot concealer. The presence of shea butter and olive extract provides instant moisture (of course, along with a flawless base) that lasts all day. It is formulated without parabens, sulphates, mineral oils, formaldehyde and any other such harmful chemicals.

Image: Courtesy Bobbi Brown

Delivering an optical blurring effect along with a lifted and sculpted look is the Ultime Pro BlendFinity Foundation Stick by Faces Canada. Providing a medium-to-high coverage, this highly blendable formula in a stick is super convenient to carry and use anywhere and everywhere. It has a creamy texture that lends a smooth and velvety finish. Furthermore, it’s also infused with white clay that gives a cleansed and matte effect to your skin.

Image: Courtesy Faces Canada

The Complexion Rescue Hydrating Foundation Stick by bareMinerals is a water-based liquid foundation in a stick. The formula is created combining hydrating skin care benefits with SPF that melt into your skin effortlessly. Suitable for all skin types, the foundation provides a naturally radiant finish with medium coverage that lasts really long. It’s a non-comedogenic product that can be used all over or as a concealer or a contour stick.

Image: Courtesy bareMinerals

A luxuriously creamy stick foundation that melts into the skin to deliver a natural filtered finish for upto 10 hours, this Huda Beauty goodness is a must try. From barely-there to full and everything in-between, its buildable formula lets you master each coverage with sheer ease. This long-wear foundation is also water, humidity and sweat resistant. It’s non-comedogenic, fragrance-free and also vegan.

Image: Courtesy Huda Beauty

Gliding on smoothly to lend a breathable, long-lasting medium coverage is the Hello Happy Matte Air Stick Foundation that’s also infused with broad spectrum SPF 20 PA+++. It’s a blend of soft, lightweight powders and shea butter to give a smooth, light-as-air texture and feel on the skin sans any cakiness. It’s also formulated with chamomile and botanical extracts with a subtle lavender fragrance.

Image: Courtesy Benefit Cosmetics

A product that ensures your skin’s health along with its look, the Vital Skin Foundation Stick by Westman Atelier undoubtedly makes for the best buy. While the luxurious cream formulation effortlessly melts into your skin, it also combats redness, evens out complexion and boosts moisture because of the presence of antioxidants and calming actives. Adhering to its guiding principles of clean beauty, the foundation does not consist of any silicones, parabens, PEGs, talc, synthetic fragrances or phthalates. It’s also vegan and cruelty-free.

Image: Courtesy Westman Atelier

An affordable and budget-friendly pick that gives a medium-to-high coverage in a matte finish, the MyGlamm Pose HD Foundation makes for a great option. With a smooth application and a satin-like texture, this stick foundation also has hydrating ingredients like shea butter, jojoba oil and vitamin E. It comes in 10 shades and is ideal for all skin types.

Image: Courtesy MyGlamm

As the name suggests, the Spotlight Glow Stick by Daily Life Forévér52 provides a luminous effect to your skin. It’s a waterproof, weightless and creamy foundation that gives a medium-to-full coverage that stays for hours. It easily blends into the skin and does not feel cakey at all.

Image: Courtesy Tata CLiQ

The Fast Base Stick Foundation is an easy-to-apply formula that blends seamlessly into the skin to provide a fresh and dewy finish that looks absolutely natural. It offers a medium coverage that does not feel heavy on the skin or crease away. The foundation is cruelty-free and vegan and comes in 18 shades with a range of undertones.

Image: Courtesy Makeup Revolution

Main & Featured Image Courtesy: Bobbi Brown Cosmetics

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

Question: Are stick foundations better than liquid foundations?

Answer: Both liquid and stick foundations have their own pros and cons ranging across parameters like ease of application, formulation, coverage, finish and convenience of carrying it, among others. In the end, it all comes down to what works best for your skin and what you’re comfortable in using.

Question: Do foundation sticks last long?

Answer: Yes. Just like a liquid foundation, even stick foundations are formulated to last for hours without budging away because of water, sweat and humidity. Much like any other foundation, its wearability varies from one formula to another being offered by different brands.

Question: How to use a foundation stick?

Answer: One of the easiest ways to use a stick foundation is to start by applying it directly on to the face. Dot or swipe it and gently blend using your fingertips, a brush or a sponge. Start with a little product but you may build upon as needed. Another way to use a stick foundation is by taking the product from the stick onto a brush and then applying that over your face. To use it for concealing or touch-ups, you can either pick up some product on your finger and pat it on the target areas or you can do the same using a concealer brush. And to use it for contouring, apply directly on the hollows of your face and blend away. However, always use a foundation on a well moisturised, primed and prepped skin to achieve a flawless finish.

Question: How to choose foundation as per skin type?

Answer: Choosing the right foundation as per your skin type is the first step to achieve an impeccable base makeup. If you have oily skin, opt for a powder or any oil-free foundation with a matte finish. If the foundation does not have a mattifying effect, use a translucent powder on top to set it all in. For dry skin, moisturising and hydrating formulations with a dewy and lightweight finish are appropriate. Be it liquid, powder or stick, a foundation with a velvety matte finish is perfect for people with combination skin. Avoid heavy formulations if you have a mature or ageing skin as the product may settle in your fine lines and wrinkles. Instead, opt for lightweight foundations that offer light coverage.

Divya Arora
An old-school at heart with a taste for contemporary finery, Divya believes in making the best of both worlds. She's a happy-go-lucky person who spends her time reading, Zentangling, or binge-watching. Hogging food & dozing off often comes naturally to her. Also, chai!
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