Thousands of owners swear by bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation for natural, long-lasting coverage that conceals blemishes -- and manages to help heal skin. Experts say it's buildable for even more coverage, but owners find that it's either very difficult to do or not possible for all skin types. This foundation is not matte, so it's not good for those with oily skin, but bareMinerals makes the same mineral foundation in a matte version.
Light coverage for a natural look. Bare Escentuals bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation is one of the most well-known mineral foundations, and with good reason. It's selected as a best pick by numerous beauty resources and is a favorite of Glamour readers and Sephora.com reviewers. While some resources say coverage is buildable, others find it works best only in a light layer. In either case, reviewers generally find that it's effective for covering blemishes and dark spots, either as spot coverage or with a full layer.
As a mineral foundation, one of the main draws of the SPF 15 Foundation is that it's natural and talc-free. Paula Begoun, beauty expert, vouches for its broad-spectrum protection but says most women won't apply it heavily enough to provide the SPF coverage it boasts -- she recommends pairing it with another sunblock. Many owners claim bareMinerals foundation has helped improve the quality of their skin and fights breakouts. Several pro recommendations note the wide range of color options (20), but Begoun says that the ingredients in bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation can cause it to look ashy on darker skin.
Leaves a greasy finish on oily skin. While the majority of reviewers love bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation, some find it's not compatible with their skin type or is too difficult to apply. For example, those with oily skin say it does nothing to combat their natural shine. Likewise, some reviewers find that when they attempt to build up the coverage of this foundation, it rubs off or cakes up only minutes later. It seems this is an issue with application -- other owners say that when applied lightly enough, this foundation offers excellent coverage without caking.
Paula Begoun, beauty expert, gives bareMinerals foundation an average score. The review says it "has a soft, almost creamy texture and an undeniably shiny finish," which makes it a poor choice for those with oily skin. Begoun also says it offers medium to full coverage, but ought to be paired with sunblock, despite the included SPF. While there are a wide range of shades, she says, "The high amount of titanium dioxide causes them to look or turn ashy on darker skin."
Review: bareMinerals Foundation SPF 15, Paula Begoun, Dec. 11, 2012
BareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation has been listed in numerous Best of Beauty lists for Allure magazine, including Best of Beauty 2009 and Reader's Choice awards since 2007. Kayleigh Donahue says the foundation can be layered on heavy or light and offers a bit of sheen for a "glowing" look. She also says it's great for sensitive skin.
Review: Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Original SPF 15 Foundation, Kayleigh Donahue, Not dated
BareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation has been named the best mineral foundation in InStyle's Best Beauty Buys list since 2008. Makeup artist, Bruce Grayson, says the preservative and talc-free formula hides blemishes well. Editors also praise bareMinerals exceptional range of colors -- 20 to be exact.
Review: Best Beauty Buys: Face, Editors of InStyle magazine, Not dated
4. Glamour magazine
Unlike most other magazine product awards, Glamour lets readers vote for the best products. Each category has one drugstore winner and one department store winner. BareMinerals SPF 15 is named the best department/specialty store foundation. One reader says the "darkest dark spot won't stand a chance."
Review: The 2012 Glammy Awards: The 30 Best Beauty Buys Ever, Editors of Glamour magazine, Not dated
At Sephora.com, more than 17,000 reviewers have reviewed BareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation and give it an average score of 4.6 out of 5 stars. Due to the sheer volume of reviews, it's difficult to review individual users' comments and complaints, but Sephora.com shows some of the most common feedback, which states the foundation offers buildable coverage, a natural finish, and it's non-drying.
Review: bareMinerals Original Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15, Contributors to Sephora.com, As of June 2013
6. Real Simple
Real Simple road-tests foundations and names BareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation the Best Light-Coverage Foundation for Sensitive Skin. Bora Chang says testers loved that it looks natural and doesn't irritate skin.
Review: The Best Foundation, Bora Chang, Not dated
More than 50 reviewers rate BareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation and give it an average score of 3.5 out of 5, with only 55 percent of reviewers saying they would purchase it again. Many reviewers note issues with caking -- they say the foundation simply can't be built up to a heavier coverage. Many users complain that it's not at all compatible with oily skin. Several owners say it's helped their skin grow healthier and fight off breakouts.
Review: Bare Escentuals - Original SPF 15 Foundation, Contributors to MakeupAlley.com, As of June 2013
Julyne Derrick, beauty guide for About.com, uses several sources (including beauty magazines, blogs and beauty-review websites) to compile her list of top foundations. While she personally doesn't like mineral makeup, she says bareMinerals is a cult classic. "It goes on featherlight and it won't budge, smudge or melt away," she says.
Review: Best Foundation: Top Picks for Every Skin Type, Julyne Derrick, Not dated