Well I thought I knew quite a lot about CoverFX, but little did I know what Derek Selby, Director of Artistry and Education, had in store for us when we went to visit the counters at House of Fraser, Oxford Street. Balancing a gorgeous strawberry juice in one hand, and hastily scribbled every word he uttered in my notepad pushed up against my forearm. Ever wondered what Cover FX foundations are all about? Well here's your low down!
Hailing from Canada, this range is famous for its coverage as it originally emerged from a clinic which provided these products to cover skin conditions. Because of their backgrounds, their coverage is immense and the ingredients are chosen very carefully. The coverage was designed to cover burns and other skin conditions, but a certain Angelina Jolie uses it to cover her tattoos.. and let's face it, if it's good enough for her, it's good enough for me! All of their products today do not contain any talc, oils, parabens, fragrances nor are they tested on animals.
The other stand-out feature about CoverFX is the range of shades. Firstly, they have three undertones - golden, pink and neutral, and they are all based on people's actual skintones - which is apparently quite rare in the industry! In fact, back in their clinical days, they used to custom mix the shades for each patient using a palette of red, white, yellow and black pigments. So you can rest assured that no one's blind folded themselves and stuck a pointer at a color wheel!
This is all great, but unless you get the right brightness of your undertone it's all a bit useless. CoverFX have actively ensured that the gap between two shades are as minimal as possible. You can have a look at my swatches below yourself!
And unlike MAC, the shade names are all the same across all formulas. So a G40 in my powder foundation is the same as the G40 in my cream foundation. You can read about my MAC experience of something similar here.
Powder in G40, Cream in G40, Liquid in G50.
Now on to the products. When it comes to foundations, you've got three choices - powder, cream and liquid. The powder and cream contain 32% pigmentation and the liquid contains 16%. Considering the average foundation contains about 8%, you're talking lots and lots of pigmentation.The other common features across the products is definitely the staying power - these babies do NOT budge, and is highly recommended for water-related events and photoshoots for make-up artists!
My personal favourite probably is the Total Cover Cream Foundation (£34), mostly because it's quite unique in the market. It gives a natural dewy finish, with a medium to full coverage depending on how you apply it. Because of its staying power, even with combination skin, I'm not worried about it wearing away or looking too oily because you sweat through the product! So you dab, and your foundation is as good as new. It's a bit difficult to use though, in that it's not too easy to blend (much better than the old formulas in the silver packaging though!), but with the right tools it can give you amazing results. I recommend stiff buffing brushes like the Sigma Sigmax range or a flat sponge if you want medium/full coverage or CoverFX's designated brush for buildable coverage which I'll talk more about below..
I quite like the Natural Finish Oil Free Foundation (£33) one as well - it's not as blendable as some other high end liquid foundations I've tried but it has the longevity and colour match that you wont find anywhere else. If you're a liquid foundation lover, and looking for solid performance over packaging and ease of use, this is a great one to try. It's probably the most natural out of the three, and provides a medium coverage and lovely dewy finish that doesn't break down with oils even for combo skinned girls like me! This I've found applies nicely with anything!
The Pressed Mineral Foundation (£31) one is the least unique in the sense that it's quite similar to the MAC Studio Fix Powder which I adore. However, it goes that extra step with the same selling points as the rest of the range in that it has a wider colour range and better staying power. I like it on its own, but I also like dusting it over my foundation for that extra coverage and matte finish on a particularly bad skin day!
The brushes from CoverFX are unique. They're created from synthetic fibres so they're vegetarian friendly, but they've gone a step further and used a patented technology which mimics the surface of a natural hair. So you have the best of both worlds!
The one you see above is the Cream Foundation Brush, and it helps to apply the cream lightly. Derek advises using this so you can build coverage up slowly as you go. They also have the Powder Brush which is one of my favourite brushes of all time - it's used to press on powder, rather than dust which is really unique (another Derek trick there!). I've also found it really suited to contouring and buffing on powder foundation! They also have a really cool buffing brush for liquid foundation that I think will provide great coverage!
Overall, you can't really go wrong with CoverFX if you're looking for coverage, longevity and shade range. I really trust its clinical expertise and the stripped-back, down to earth attitude of the brand. Sure it lacks the gold detailing of YSL and the dreamy blending of Dior products, but if you're looking for a no-nonsense, end-result and utility-focused brand - CoverFX is a great place to start. You do pay a bit more and it's slightly harder to use than other high-end brands, but there's not much else like it on the market at all!