Essence Stay All Day Foundation review

July 12, 2013

essence stay all day long lasting makeup foundation review

I had to buy this foundation when I read about it online a few weeks ago. Firstly, it is cheap. And by cheap I on’t mean R180, I mean R54.99. Yep. It was too good to pass up. I love doing budget reviews alongside my luxe reviews so that the students reading can still actually go out and purchase something and have party money left over (I mean… textbook money).

I have been using quite a few Essence products and am mostly impressed with the quality for what you’re paying. The Essence Stay All Day Foundation was a little out of my comfort zone because I k new that there wouldn’t rally be a shade to suit me. I’m also very wary of budget foundations and find it hard to move away from what I’m used to.

I bought the shade 40, which is the darkest shade available. It came sealed and you could tell if it had been tampered with. This is on of the biggest issues I have with drugstore makeup. Often other consumers just merrily try out the products and testers are nowhere to be found. I was quite glad to see that this was tamper proof πŸ™‚

The plastic bottle comes with a pump which is a huge plus for me and it dispenses a good amount of product. One pump is enough to cover my face.

The foundation is a little thicker than expected but does spread evenly and is very easy to blend. It is definitely build-able. I usually apply a small amount to my cheeks and larger amount to my chin area which is very pigmented. It feels gentle on my skin and seems perfect for winter. My skin didn’t feel tight and didn’t start feeling dry into the night. If you have a very oily skin this is a product that might not work very well for you. I love the radiant and natural effect it gives, but it is definitely not matte, especially after a few hours.

Does it stay put? I wore this for around 5 hours and it was still perfect, so I do think it will stay on for much longer.

essence stay all day long lasting makeup foundation review

The worst part.

I read this all the time about Essence, but the colour selection is very limited. $0 is the darkest shade and looks nearly brown on the bottle. But it is not, it is a very pink-tones beige colour. It was definitely too light for my skin by a few shades and didn’t match because I need something more yellow toned. Nevertheless, I could easily warm it up with some matter bronzer which is what I did. I don’t think the colour difference was very noticable once I had warmed it up.

Overall, I loved this foundation, it is a fantastic option for those strapped for cash and looking for a good, wearable foundation that provides a medium to full coverage.

essence stay all day long lasting makeup foundation review

In the photo below you can clearly see the pinkish tone this creates on my skin. It did have strong coverage though and if you click to zoom you can see exactly how well it worked.

essence stay all day long lasting makeup foundation review

essence stay all day foundation review

Essence is available at Clicks and selected Dischem stores nationwide (South Africa)


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  • Reply Prettiful July 12, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    Colour is the worst with Essence, although the tinted moisturiser and the other clean skin one is a match for me. The bb cream wasnt at all!

    • Reply zaamissbowtie July 14, 2013 at 7:50 pm

      Ah, the bb cream works so well for me, but even though they are European, they really should make a bigger effort with the shades!

  • Reply Khensani - July 12, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    You’d think for a company that produces these good quality and affordable products they’d think to expand their colour range.

    • Reply zaamissbowtie July 14, 2013 at 7:51 pm

      Yeah, it works for their European target market, but not for their international ones. It’s a waste because the products could get so much use.

  • Reply chandni May 5, 2015 at 11:05 am

    I agree that the shade are limited with essence foundation/ makeup, and the essence stay all day 16h long lasting makeup sure does leave my skin flawless and since I suffer with acne breakouts time to time, I’ve notice how well the foundation covers the lightened acne scars, and the pure skin anti-spot bb cream I’d been using for over a year, I have no problem with it, and its affordable and budget friendly

  • Reply mandisa December 27, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    Hi there

    I am looking for “Essence My Base”use to buy it in clicks here in Bloem but they don’t sell it anymore please Assist.

    Kind regards

  • Reply ChenΓ© April 20, 2016 at 9:47 pm

    So today I walked into a small clicks with limited time and thought to myself, ” just pick something!” As I stand there with a bare face since my foundation was finished. I tried a tester and liked the way it felt on my skin while swatching it on the back of my hand. So I went on a limb and bought it and as soon as I got home i started feeling uneasy with myself as I have dry patches mainly on my forehead so I can’t wear just anything, so naturally I went on a search for a great review and I’m so glad I found yours! I applied it to my face as I would normally do with foundation (lol) and can I just say I’m so happy with it! Matches my skin perfectly and not making my skin look cakes or flakey where my dry spots are. And for that price, I might have found my new favorite πŸ™‚

    • Reply Zaahirah Bhamjee April 28, 2016 at 9:10 am

      Yay! Honestly I am almost always impressed with Essence! Glad the foundation works for you πŸ™‚

  • Reply Xoliswa Ndaba December 9, 2017 at 5:50 am

    I love essences cosmetics especially their foundation I’m a soft caramel and I love the coverage it has, it’s long lasting and doesn’t oxidize at all, doesn’t mattify cause not all of us like matte bases especially dry skin girls my only problem it the color range I’m a make-up artist and when am asked about less pricey but good bases I can’t recommend essences cause from soft caramel which is my shade there’s one more shade and that’s it only two shades available for women of color ( which is sad ) cause the formulation is bomb . it’s harder to find my essences foundation in Durban South Africa there’s the new ones only and my shade is no where there plus shy are they all matte ????

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