How To Look Good For The End Of The World

I’m just gonna come right out and say it: everything’s fucked.

The mass transportation system in this country is in a death spiral, the earth is burning to a cinder as we speak, and I’m going through personal bullshit that (a) I’m not sure I’m allowed to talk about; and (b) I don’t really have the energy to get into right now.

There’s a lot more that I’ve not mentioned in the cliff notes of horror above, but that’s just because I’m constantly tired thanks to the 5 to 6 hours I spend commuting daily.

But I am nothing if not vain, so in the midst of all this chaos and instability I still cannot abide outwardly looking like the abject despair that I feel inside. I will not step out of the house looking like the inner eldritch abomination that has consumed my capacity for hope and joy.

And so here we are, with a foundation review.

MAKE UP FOR EVER is one of my all-time favorite beauty brands. Their Ultra HD (Fluid) Foundation is one of the best I’ve ever tried, covering up blemishes and evening out the skin tone without ever looking cake-y or fake. It’s an incredibly photogenic foundation and I never have to worry about how I look in photos as long as I have it on.

This year MUFE came out with a new foundation called Reboot, promising to wipe every last sign of fatigue off your haggard face. It supposedly combines skin care and makeup to combat dullness, fine lines, skin dehydration, and unevenness, giving you a much healthier visage overall.

Now I’m clearly no scientist, and the daily grind has reduced my brain to about 50% capacity, so you’ll forgive me if I don’t go looking into the skin care science behind this foundation.

Instead I will offer you something no scientist ever will: anecdotal evidence.

Finish: luminous soft matte. It certainly isn’t glowy in the same way Korean base makeup is glowy, but it leaves you with skin that looks healthy and hydrated minus any unwanted oiliness.

It reminds me of Bourjois Healthy Mix, but with a more natural finish. Skin looks like skin, except better.

Coverage: light to medium, and very buildable. I find that if you apply a thin and even layer with a dense brush, it creates a sort of “film” so you get flexible coverage. It doesn’t look fake or spackled on, is what I’m saying.

I use Y245, which is just a hair warmer than my actual skin tone, so I can get away with not using a concealer for my dark circles and blemishes. If you’re a little more particular about not letting these imperfections show, though, get a concealer.

Wear: I have combination skin (dry cheeks + very oily nose) and stay in an air-conditioned office all day. MUFE Reboot doesn’t make my face feel dry or tight and it stays looking good from 6AM to 8PM. Yes. That’s time spent working AND commuting. Wonderful.

It gets a little oily on my nose and temples by 3 in the afternoon, which I don’t mind. It doesn’t break down, though, so no need to retouch the area under your eyes or the sides of your nose.

My main gripe is that it smells like someone tried to make it smell healthy. I can’t explain it; I just think it smells like traditional Chinese medicine and raw vegetables. I don’t like it and it stays noticeable for about 30 minutes before dissipating. I have other, more annoying concerns  in life, though, so I mostly try and get over the smell.

It doesn’t have the blurring effect that you get from Ultra HD, but I do think MUFE Reboot is the better everyday choice. It’s very lightweight and you barely feel it on your face once it sets. Plus the finish is very natural and almost completely unclockable (as long as you blend, of course) so you don’t look like you’re wearing makeup at all. You just look like you haven’t given up on life yet, you know?

MUFE Reboot makes me look like I actually slept, like I’d actually known what it was to be at peace for at least a few hours. It makes me look unbothered, which is all I can ask for given the swirl of never-ending nightmares engulfing the world we live in right now.

This march towards death’s cold embrace is inevitable. Might as well look good doing it.


Featured image from MUFE Singapore Youtube

A Face-ful of Fenty Part 2: The Base Makeup

So obviously it took me a lot longer to write this post. It’s definitely a lot easier to review brushes, because you use them a couple of times and you can figure out if they’re good or not.

Base makeup takes a little more time and testing. You’ll have to run a few combinations till you figure out what works and what doesn’t. I feel like if you don’t test foundation several times (at the very least), you’re doing the product an absolute disservice.

So what do I think of the Fenty Beauty primer, foundation, and concealer? Let’s get to it.

Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer

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Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer

This is a vanilla marshmallow cloud of a primer, and I love it.

Fair warning: this is a very silicone-y product. I personally have no quarrel with silicones; my skin reacts to coconut esters but not dimethicone. If you’re sensitive, though, you might want to steer clear.

Moving on: why do I love this primer? Let me not count the ways. First, it smells very faintly of marshmallows. The smell isn’t overpowering in any way, but it’s there and it just has a very calming effect on me.

Second, it leaves my face super soft and smooth. I don’t think it actually fills in pores (I’ll talk about this more in a second) or extends the life of my foundation, but it does function as a great smoothing base that you can build on. Plus, I gladly apply a lot but it never pills.

Finally: it does have that blurring effect that we all want from modern primers. It’s not gonna be a straight up filter, but the light pink tint softens imperfections and neutralizes redness.

On a good skin day, you could get away with this primer, a bit of concealer, and a nice finishing powder.

It’s not all fun and marshmallows, of course.

It doesn’t stop my nose from oiling up, and it doesn’t stop the foundation from sinking into my pores. The weird thing is that this pores thing only happens around my nose, where my pores are tiny. The exact same thing happens to Youtuber kathleenlights, who also has dry skin like me.

It however prevents the foundation from sinking into the huge pores on my nose. Weird.

Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

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Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

Before anything else, I want to focus on the best part of this foundation: the shade.

I bought all my stuff from Sephora.PH, so that means I never had the chance to test shades on my actual face. That’s a dumb thing to do, but it worked out fine. Plus, I actually wasn’t going in completely blind.

About a couple months earlier, I got a sample from Sephora that had a range of shades. 150 was the closest match, but I found it a little too yellow for me. I went to the Fenty website and checked out the light warm and light neutral shades. Plus, I did the Sephora match test and (using Y225 for MUFE) I got shade 140.

Let me tell you, 140 is a flipping perfect match. It’s warm but not overly yellow, which is a common problem for East Asian people. It matches me perfectly like no foundation ever has before.

The closest shade for me is Makeup Forever’s Y225, but it is just a hair lighter than my normal color. Fenty 140 is the sort of shade where I can straight up skip applying on my neck (don’t skip, though, for texture uniformity) and people won’t see the color discrepancy.

My problem with this foundation is that’s it’s both matte and full coverage — a combination that can look mask-like, especially on dry skin. The good news is that it doesn’t leave me looking cracked or parched, thanks to the high humidity of Manila.

I do have to make sure I prep my skin, though. The primer is not enough to keep the foundation looking nice and smooth on me. I have to make sure I apply my moisturizer or facial oil, let it sit, apply sunscreen, let that sit, and then the primer. It’s a lot of work.

The foundation looks really good and covers everything I’d like to cover with just one layer. It also looks better as the day wears on and some natural oil shines through a tiny bit.

My problem is that when I get super up close to the mirror, I can see how the matte finish really emphasizes every bump, uneven texture, and flake that my face has to offer. My consolation is that no one will stand two centimeters from my nose to inspect my makeup. What’s important is that at arm’s length my makeup looks flawless.

The Fenty channel recommends adding a drop or two of facial oil in the foundation to make it less matte, which I might just try one of these days.

This isn’t my favorite foundation because of how much effort it entails, and how matte it is, which breaks my heart because the shade match is beyond awesome. I’ll continue using it, though, because gripes aside, it does look pretty good on me.

Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Concealer

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Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Concealer

This is a great concealer for dark circles. I find that the best method is to apply this straight from the wand by making tiny dots on the darkest part of your under-eye area, then blending with either your finger or the concealer brush. Small pats work best until you’ve achieved the coverage you want.

I find that it doesn’t crease as long as I don’t over-apply. There’s no weird patchiness, either, and it doesn’t really set into the fine lines under my eyes.

That said, I don’t like this concealer for blemishes. It’s way too dry and doesn’t have enough coverage. My go-to concealer is MUFE Full Cover Extreme Camouflage Cream, which also has a weird learning curve that almost made me give up on it.

It took some effort to figure out how the MUFE concealer worked, so I tried to do the same for this one from Fenty. Sadly, I just couldn’t make it work for actual blemishes. It doesn’t have that good coverage, especially for obvious bumps.

Now discoloration? No problem. Just dab a bit of the concealer on the dark areas under and around your nose.

All in all, I can’t say I’m 100% into the foundation and concealer. They’re not bad, and I’m sure for certain skin types they are more than excellent. For my dry skin, though, I feel like there are better options for me. It’s just the shade match that’s keeping me in this Fenty life.


All images from Fenty Beauty