The other day, I saw somebody post on Reddit about some “special effects” makeup/foundations- because costumes tend to be more “extreme,” SFX foundations tend to come in a larger range of shades both on the very pale end and on the very deep end. Now, when I was looking them all up, I got super confused- there just weren’t that many swatches online available, especially not next to “normal” (non-sfx) foundations. I wasn’t sure what shades I’d need, so I ended up finding a website called Camera Ready Cosmetics that sells sample sizes of some SFX foundations- so of course, I ordered some of what I believed to be the most pale foundations from Ben Nye, Mehron, and Graftobian.
Here’s a lovely picture of all the samples I ordered- the formulas for all of them are creamy, and these samples are PACKED! I’m not sure exactly how much is in there, but it definitely feels like enough for more than a couple faces.
And now we have some arm swatches! I was able to include all 15 colors on my arm, and I swatched Missha #13 on the left side of my arm and Josie Maran Vibrancy in Dynamic (RG5) on the right side, so you can see how they compare. We have natural levels of lower/over-cast light vs flash here. I swatched them in order of the samples above: left to right and up to down. So, in order, we have
- Ben Nye HD Matte in Fair N-1
- Ben Nye HD Matte in Cine Fairest CE-1
- Ben Nye HD Matte in Shinsei Ivory SH-0
- Ben Nye HD Matte in Pale Bisque MM-104 (note: this shows up almost white, but it is not the whitest foundation here)
- Mehron Celebre HD-Pro Foundation in Alabaster 201-1B (note: this is the whitest looking foundation on here)
- Mehron Celebre HD-Pro Foundation in Extra Fair 201-2B (note: huge change between Alabaster and Extra Fair)
- Mehron Celebre HD-Pro Foundation in Soft Peach 201-22A
- Mehron Celebre HD-Pro Foundation in Light 1 201-LT1 (more yellow)
- Mehron Celebre HD-Pro Foundation in Eurasia Ivory 201-EI (the most yellow looking one)
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Silk Sprite
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Nymph
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Buff
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Porcelain
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Lady Fair
- Graftobian Hi-Def Creme in Bombshell (note: swatch is quite hard to see- sorry!)
And, because I was already doing some intense swatching, I did collar bone and jawline swatches, grouped by foundation type….
Ben Nye HD Matte:
From left to right:
- Pale Bisque MM104 (closest to my chin)
- Shinsei Ivory SH-0
- Cine Fairest CE-1
- Fair N-1 (closest to my ear)
Mehron Celebre HD-Pro
A little harder to see, but again from left to right
- Eurasia Ivory 201-EI (closest to my chin)
- Light 1 201-LT1
- Soft Peach 201-221
- Extra Fair 201-2B
- Alabaster 201-1B (closest to my ear)
Graftobian Hi-Def Creme
My skin was getting red from washing off the foundations, so I switched to my other side for these swatches. I like the Graftobian foundation for having a chart on their website that orders the foundations into undertone and then shade, so the first 3 are the lightest 3 cool colors and the last 3 are the lightest 3 neutrals. Left to right (ear to chin):
- Silk Sprite (closest to ear)
- Lady Fair
- Bombshell (closest to chin)
Honestly, I’m unsure how I feel about the colors of each foundation. Ben Nye Cine Fairest might work, but I think mixing Fair and Cine Fairest might work better? For the Mehron, I’m not sure I see a good match at all. For the Graftobian, I might start with Nymph or Buff, but Lady Fair or Bombshell might work too?? I’m really unsure!
If you want to get samples, check out Camera Ready Cosmetics. My order was placed on Thursday, I got free shipping from ordering over $50, and it got to me on Monday- that’s 2-3 business days!