Moisture Rich Radiance Foundation

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Makeup > Sensitive Skin Products > Foundations without Sunscreen > Cream Foundation
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This cream foundation is packaged in a compact outfitted with a large mirror that swivels. The application sponge Quo includes is flimsy and inadequate and should be discarded in favor of a sturdier more user-friendly sponge.

This Vaseline-based foundation should feel emollient, almost greasy, but because the petrolatum (Vaseline) is joined by the absorbent silica, the result is a thick, almost immovable texture that has an oddly dry, powdery finish. Even more strange is that the foundation has a swirled pattern that separates the colored portion from the white (“moisture rich”) portion. The result is uneven application that tends to make each shade take on a ghostly pallor on your skin. Add to that the largely unattractive shades and this becomes a foundation everyone should avoid.

Petrolatum, Silica, Tricaprylin, Neopentyl Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-2, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, C13-16 Isoparaffin, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, Candelilla Cera, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Cera Microcrystallina, PEG-30 Dipolyhydroxystearate, Plukenetia Volubilis Seed Oil, C12-14 Isoparaffin, Water, Polymethylsilsesquioxane/Benzimadazole/Diamond Copolymer, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Lauroyl Lysine, C13-15 Alkane, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Ceresin, Polyglyceryl-10 Decaoleate, Phenoxyethanol, Prunus Amygdalus (Sweet Almond) Oleosomes, Tocopheryl Acetate, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Tribehenin, Glycerin, Schinus Terebinthifolius Seed Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Stearoxymethicone/Dimethicone Copolymer, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Ceramide 2, PEG-10 Rapeseed Sterol, Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate, Sodium Benzoate, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-14, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide

May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides

This relatively small but comprehensive makeup line is sold exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada, and is one of their star performers among a backdrop of other name-brand drugstore product lines. The impetus behind this simple but elegantly packaged line was the need to bring makeup artist–quality cosmetics into a mainstream drugstore. As heroic a claim as that may be, the truth is that there have always been superior makeup formulations at the drugstorein fact, some of those products have set the standards that the rest of the industry tries to keep up with.

Despite their unconvincing excuse for launching yet another cosmetics line, many of Quo's products have velvety, smooth textures, even application, and a pleasing mix of classic and contemporary shades, including neutral-toned foundations. As was the case when we reviewed this line a few years ago, the standout products are the powder eyeshadows and the makeup brushes; however, the lipsticks and lip liners are also worth your attention. A significant improvement from my last visit is that now the Quo displays feature testers for every product, and the staff at Shoppers Drug Mart encourages you to use them! We wish more drugstore cosmetic lines would incorporate this feature, but for now, this is another area where Quo really stands out, and it deserves serious consideration by Canadian residents and visitors alike.

Of course, not everything Quo offers is remarkable and, if anything, their expanded roster of products seems more gimmicky than innovative, although some of the newer items are outstanding and, given the new testers, now you can try before you buy. The concealer category is the weakest, followed by the powders, which, with one exception, aren't keeping pace with advances in this area, especially compared with the preferred options from L'Oreal and Revlon (often sold right next to Quo). 

For more information about Quo Cosmetics, visit

Note: All prices for Quo Cosmetics products are in Canadian dollars.

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Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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