Bareskin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation SPF 20

Price:
$29 
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Category:
Makeup > Foundations With Sunscreen > Liquid Foundation w/ Sunscreen
Last Updated:
5/6/2014
Jar Packaging:
No
Tested On Animals:
No

Bareskin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation is touted as a “breakthrough tone-correcting mineral foundation and skincare serum in one”, but that’s an overstatement. First things first: There’s nothing particularly advantageous about “mineral” makeup (check out this article to find out why).  Second, in no way does this foundation replace a well formulated serum in your daytime routine. In fact, swapping your regular serum for this would be selling your skin short on the remarkable ingredients found in today’s best serums. Yes, there are skin-care ingredients in this foundation, but that’s true for most liquid foundations. 

The bulk of the fragrance-free formula contains ingredients that give this foundation its aesthetics; not ingredients that anti-age skin. The anti-aging ingredients are used in lower concentrations and none of them are particularly adept at improving an uneven skin tone (though simply applying a foundation can do that via the coverage it provides). In a move for the best, this foundation is bottled in air-tight, opaque packaging to help stabilize the ingredients that are air and light sensitive.

The formula provides broad spectrum sun protection via mineral active titanium dioxide which is what delivers the primary anti-aging benefit.  Note that unless you’re willing to apply this liberally, we always recommend pairing a foundation with SPF with another source of sunscreen to ensure adequate protection

In terms of this foundation’s performance, the ultrathin, fluid texture blends into skin for a natural finish. Although this is a very lightweight, sheer foundation, you can build up to medium coverage by stippling it. Bare Escentuals sells an accompanying brush just for that, but you can use any stippling brush.

The ultrathin texture does have the tendency to separate, particularly on oily skin so setting this with a powder is a must. The ideal candidate for Bareskin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation is someone with normal or combination skin.

The massive shade range caters to fair skin tones, all the way up to deep. Avoid the 06 Satin shade due to its unflattering pink undertones, but otherwise there are plenty of neutral, flattering options for all skin tones.

All in all, this isn’t a revolutionary product that will change your need for good skin care, but if you want a really lightweight, sheer foundation with buildable coverage, then you may find it appealing.

Pros:

  • Natural finish, ideal for normal or combination skin.
  • Expansive shade range of flattering colors for light to deep skin tones.
  • Lightweight, fluid texture blends on easily.
  • Buildable, sheer-to-medium coverage.
  • Titanium dioxide  provides broad spectrum sun protection.

Cons:

  • Not as revolutionary as claimed (doesn’t replace need for a serum or skin-lightening product).
  • Anti-aging ingredients are used in low concentration.
  • Ultra-thin texture can end up separating, especially on oily skin.

Active: Titanium Dioxide (11%). Other: Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Coconut Alkanes, Silica, Stearalkonium Hectorite, Lecithin, Glycerin, Maltodextrin, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Jojoba Esters, Propylene Carbonate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Soil Minerals/Syringa Vulgaris (Lilac) Leaf Cell Culture Extract, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Phenoxyethanol. May Contain: Mica, Iron Oxides, Titanium Dioxide.

Makeup is what this San Francisco-based cosmetics line is primarily about, and they use the pure and natural marketing angle to entice consumers. The self-proclaimed "healthiest, purest makeup in the world" was founded in 1976 by Diane Ranger, who left the company in the early '90s, and is now run by Leslie Blodgett, who appears regularly on QVC and the company's own infomercials to support and demonstrate her products. Blodgett is largely credited with turning the line she began into a $150 million business—no small feat. The products are sold in most Sephora boutiques and Ulta stores, though the full selection of skin-care products is most often found at the Bare Escentuals freestanding stores scattered throughout the United States.

Supporting the company's portrayal as a leader in purity are the corresponding claims that the bareMinerals makeup does not contain fragrance, oil, binders, preservatives, emulsifiers, or any other harmful chemicals. Although this line does have its advantages for someone with sensitive skin, as it turns out, bismuth oxychloride, a major ingredient in the powder formulations, can cause skin irritation, while the other minerals can be drying (Source: www.sciencelab.com/xMSDS-Bismuth_oxychloride-9923103). Regarding bismuth oxychloride, it is interesting to note that bismuth (a metallic element) seldom occurs in nature. Instead, it is a by-product of copper and lead refining, or is manufactured synthetically. Chemically, it's similar to arsenic, a fact you won't see in any advertising for bareMinerals. However, just as cosmetic-grade mineral oil is not identical to the petroleum from which it originated, neither is bismuth oxychloride identical to bismuth. The bismuth oxychloride used in cosmetics is non-toxic, but this background offers a good example of how skewed a company's definition of "natural" can be.

Aside from the health and purity claims, loose powders are as messy as it gets in terms of your vanity (countertop, not ego) and your makeup bag. The powder just gets all over the place, and the very basic packaging does not do much to minimize the mess. Additionally, while there are softer neutral shades, and some fairly exotic shades as well, most are mildly to extremely shiny and make any amount of crepey skin look more so. The face powder does provide some amount of opaque coverage, but the shine and the thickness can be a bit much. The loose powder eyeshadows and blushes apply in a somewhat lighter way, though they still provide significant coverage. Many women ask me about mineral makeup and whether or not it really is better for skin. The answer to that question is "No."

Although most mineral makeup is innocuous, the texture, appearance, and application have difficulties that make it not comparable to today's best liquid or pressed-powder foundations. We agree with bareMinerals' stance that foundation shouldn't look or feel like a mask, nor should there be a line of demarcation where the application stops. However, their foundations are not the only ones able to achieve this, and there is no inherent benefit to this type of foundation over numerous other options.

There isn't much to say about the skin-care products, but what's worth paying attention to is noted in the At-a-Glance section.

For more information about Bare Escentuals, call 1.888.795.4747 or visit www.bareescentuals.com.

Member Comments

Summary of Member Comments

  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
Page of 1
  1. Anne Marie
    Reviewed on Saturday, July 19, 2014
    • Value
      1 / 4
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • Results
      1 / 4
    Money Wasted
    • I had high hopes for this foundation as most of my make-up is Bare Essentials. I have oily skin and usually have to blot my make up at least four times during the work day. The Bare Minerals liquid foundation caused even more oil to come to the surface of my skin, and the foundation separated. I tried the product several times with the same result. I had no choice but to throw it and the $28 brush away.

  2. MELANIE P.
    Reviewed on Friday, June 27, 2014
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    If it didn't say anti aging benefits what would rating be
    • What would Paula's Choice rating be if the product didn't claim to be anti aging? I love this foundation product. I used to use the powder foundation and loved it except it was messy. The serum is not messy at all. The container dispenses drops which is so nice. By the way, I only use Paula's Choice skin care products. They are the best!

    Paula's Choice Research Team Response
    Replied on: Friday, June 27, 2014

    Hi there! If the company wasn't making anti-aging claims, this product would've likely earned a GOOD rating.

    —Admin
  3. BRENDA a.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, May 28, 2014
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    really awesome so far!
    • When I'm scanning reviews, looking for a great new foundation, an "average" rating wouldn't catch my eye. Lucky for me, a friend was wearing this foundation and I noticed that her skin look fabulous, even after taking my barre class. I have GREAT skin, at almost 60 years old; I use only PC products. This foundation is awesome for me--light weight, no caking into the few fine lines I do have, easy to apply. I don't buy a foundation for skin care--I use the BEST products for that!

  4. Annette D.
    Reviewed on Sunday, May 25, 2014
    • Results
      1 / 4
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • Value
      1 / 4
    Over-rated!
    • The only bare minerals product I recommend are the ready shadows. They literally will last all day with a good primer Ofcourse.I don't even buy those anymore.I never believed the ingredients did anything for the skin or eyes like they claimed.

  5. Justine H.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, May 21, 2014
    • Recommend
      3 / 4
    • Results
      3 / 4
    • Value
      3 / 4
    Not sure why this did not get a good review
    • Not sure why this foundation wasn't given a good rating. Look at the pros column and you can add one more, it's fragrance free. I like it. I do have dry skin that is worse sometimes than others. I choose a creamier foundation on those occasions. I do however like this foundation. Buildable coverage, protective packaging, sunscreen, fragrance free. It gets a Good rating in my book.

    Paula's Choice Research Team Response
    Replied on: Wednesday, May 21, 2014

    Hi Justine! Thank you for sharing your experience, and we're glad the Bareskin Pure Brightening Foundation is a beauty find for you! SO, in the review we do sing the praises of the finish and performance of this foundation, we liked it! However, what counted against this formula was the fact that it is marketed as an anti-aging product AND a foundation—which it fails totally on the first half of that promise. In other words, no matter how great a foundation it is, it can only get a 50% (or AVERAGE) rating because it's living up to half of its advertised claims (it lacks the anti-aging ingredients that you would expect given its promises). In Beautypedia, we take the claims into strong consideration when determining which rating the product earns. Hope that helps!

    —Admin
  6. Annette D.
    Reviewed on Thursday, May 08, 2014
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • Results
      1 / 4
    • Value
      1 / 4
    Even better has more to offer
    • I have heard that this foundation clings to dry spots.I think clinique's even better foundation has more to offer. It's probably has a lot of similarities. More bang for your buck.

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About the Experts

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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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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