The newest drugstore makeup product that’s almost impossible to find after going viral on TikTok is none other than the Milani Conceal + Perfect Smooth Finish Cream to Powder Foundation. This drugstore foundation isn’t actually newly released, though some say it’s been recently re-formulated and has become popular for its smooth application, full coverage and 22-color shade range.
The $10.99 foundation claims to offer the smooth application of a cream but with a soft matte finish, and a formula that’s made with Lily and Bamboo extracts to control oil and shine up to 16 hours, and Vitamins A and E and Green Tea to help protect the skin. It’s cruelty free and vegan, and supposedly sweat-proof and waterproof. The shade that matches me best is 220 Creamy Natural, which I shade-matched through the brand’s online shade finder.
Watch the video at the top of the page to see the application and before/after wear test.
While the consistency is creamy, it’s not too soft or malleable in the compact. I use the Real Techniques Expert Face Brush with it, and it’s able to pick up a lot of product and apply it smoothly and evenly to my face. My first impression was: wow, the coverage! One thin layer got me nearly full coverage, only needing to pat on a little extra over some stubbornly red blemishes. The foundation felt set pretty quickly, with a finish that looked blurred and slightly powdered. Without setting the foundation with anything, I also got very smooth results with the rest of my makeup on top: my powder blush, bronzer, and highlight all blended out seamlessly, and the application didn’t pull or displace the foundation at all.
I wore this on a relatively warm day for eight hours and, unfortunately, this foundation did not hold up for me. Around hour four, the foundation started to separate and sit on top of the skin, looking uneven and patchy. Especially around my nose and nostrils, my upper lip, chin and blemishes, the foundation looked like it was trying to escape my face. I even gently tried brushing off a fleck of mascara that had fell onto my nose and the subtle contact left a completely bare patch of skin behind. It got worse as time went on, especially in my oily skin areas, and shine started to come through much earlier than the 16-hour promise.
On the flip side, there were areas of my face that still looked smooth and even at the end of the day— namely, the left side of my face where I wasn’t experiencing any blemishes or much skin texture. Surprisingly, my forehead also looked great eight hours later, despite being a part of my usually oily T-Zone. While it didn’t settle in the fine lines on my forehead, it definitely settled and cracked in my deeper laugh lines. In the areas that didn’t experience separating, the coverage seemed to stay strong as well.
All in all, I think this foundation is a big gamble for combo and oily skin, which is honestly a bit perplexing considering it marketed to those seeking oil control. If you have normal to dry skin and don’t deal with acne, you may have better luck and it could be a great choice to conceal dark spots and even out skin tone. For me, the equally popular L’Oreal Infallible Fresh Wear Powder Foundation has the same ease of application and full coverage, but lasts much better on my combo skin.
You can find the Milani Cream to Powder Foundation at Ulta Beauty as an online-only item.