The Ordinary Coverage Foundation

The quest to find my perfect foundation continues. I’ve tried so many different brands and formulas and still haven’t found one that performs the way I want it to. This time under the spotlight: The Ordinary’s full coverage formula.

I’ve heard a lot about this brand, particularly from my fellow beauty bloggers. I was a bit ~intimidated~ (I guess) at first, because The Ordinary as a brand is very skincare-oriented, so there was a lot of scientific words in the titles of their products that I didn’t necessarily understand (mainly because me = duh). But I’d seen post after post on Instagram of their cute little foundation bottles alongside rave reviews, and as soon I spotted them on both Beauty Bay and Cult Beauty, I popped it on my list of foundations to try.


Because of all the scientific-sounding stuff, I was a little worried about whether or not the brand was cruelty-free — wrongly, as it transpired. A quick Google search brought me to one of my usual sources for animal testing info, and The Ordinary do not test finished products or ingredients on animals or ask other companies to do so; are not sold in mainland China; and all the products are vegetarian-friendly (some are even vegan! Not much of an issue for myself but good to know all the same).

The first bottle I ordered was the serum foundation. Quick off the bat, I was very unimpressed. The formula was straight-up weird: I wasn’t expecting a lot of coverage, but the problem was that it was so patchy. It didn’t spread evenly on my skin at all and clung to my blemishes in big, dry, flaky patches — and as someone with an oily complexion, that’s saying something! The colour match was also terrible; so so orange! I know that potentially that could easily be fixed by simply picking another shade, but the thing is, the shade wasn’t as bad when I first put it on. It oxidised like crazy. So that went straight in my Reserve makeup bag, never to be seen again.


Next, I ordered the Coverage foundation. Anticipating colour issues, I ordered two shades: Light Medium 2.0P, and Light Medium 2.0YG. They looked very similar, but the 2.0P swatch looked more accurate whereas the 2.0YG description (yellow undertones with gold highlights) sounded like it would work better with my skintone.

The 2.0P wasn’t actually too bad, but it was a tad pink. I’d definitely still wear it, shade-wise, but I’d probably need some shade adjusting drops to even it out a bit. The 2.0YG is a much better match — at first. Again, it oxidises, and it oxidises quickly; not as bad as the serum foundation, but it definitely gets slightly darker and warmer.

Here’s what it looks like straight on the skin with no other products:


The consistency of the formula is better than the serum, but still quite difficult to work with. Other foundations I’ve used blend and buff really easily in the skin, but this requires a bit more elbow grease. You also end up using quite a few pumps of foundation in order to get even coverage — is that what they mean by full coverage?? It ends up a liiiiiitle bit cakey, but then again… what full coverage foundation doesn’t?

It actually creates quite a nice base for other products, a bit like a primer. It makes the surface of the skin feel really smooth so things like contour and highlight blend really nicely without completely blending away, and it tackles my oiliness really well too — it doesn’t slip and slide all over my oily nose the way other foundations do.

Here’s what it looks like with a full face:

img_5315 img_5323

Once my full face is done, the colour match looks a lot more accurate — not perfect, but better. I also really like how smooth my skin looks as well as feels.

One thing I look for in a foundation is longevity. I rarely put makeup on for a short period of time; I work all day so it needs to last at least nine hours on your average day. You’d definitely expect a full coverage foundation to achieve this!

I applied this makeup at noon on my day off, and went about my normal routine — driving, eating, nipping to the shops, etc. I even went to a flat viewing in the afternoon! This is how it looked at 2:30 P.M.


Still pretty decent, but I noticed some oiliness coming through on my nose and some of it had come off my chin, possible from eating/wiping my mouth.

Here’s how it looked at 6:00 P.M., right before I took it off:


There was definitely a lot of product on there, but it had also worn off considerably, particularly on my chin and nose where I have most of my blemishes and oiliness — and that was after only six hours. It performed admirably, but unfortunately it was just not up to scratch.

So all in all… it’s not bad. I’ll probably use up the rest of the bottle but I don’t find myself reaching for it on a day to day basis, and I probably won’t be in a hurry to repurchase. After buying and testing out three different formulas/shades and not being completely blown away, I think it’s safe to say it’s not The One for me!

Have you tried this foundation? What do you think?



I'm Juliet and I'm a twenty-something Creative Writing graduate based in the U.K. with a love of books, cats, and cosmetics.

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  1. Lucy Jane says:

    Looks like it had pretty good staying power, I’m in need of finding my perfect foundation!

    Lucy Jane | Infinity of Fashion

    1. Juliet says:

      I think if I could find the right shade for my skintone after it oxidises, I’d be more convinced! Thank you for commenting 🙂

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