TikTok's Excessive Foundation Trend Went Viral, But Does It Work?

Full coverage has a new definition.

Originally Published: 
Meredith Duxbury/Instagram
TikTok's excessive foundation challenge and trend creator, Meredith Duxbury.

For a minute there, it appeared as if the beauty trend cycle had finally tilted away from full-coverage foundation — and all of the contouring, baking, and setting spray that often comes with it. No-makeup makeup was already on the rise before quarantine, but staying indoors indefinitely accelerated it for many. Well, that is until Meredith Duxbury's makeup routine went viral, kicking off the excessive foundation trend on TikTok.

Often garnering millions of views per video — and her very own TikTok foundation challenge — Duxbury's routine typically consists of pouring large amounts of liquid foundation onto the back of her hand, applying it with the handle of a brush (so, the non-fluffy part), blending it in with her hands, and following up with another layer of foundation applied directly onto her face; makeup primer optional. Simply put, it's a lot. And it's the type of visually stimulating, mainstream-trend-defying content that performs wonderfully on the social media platform. But does it actually work?

Depends on who you ask. "*Mentally prepares myself for hate comments lol* Tried out the @meredithduxbury foundation challenge — don’t let this flop please my pores are crying," beauty influencer Samantha Evira captioned a Jan. 13 Instagram post trying out the foundation trend. Angela Trakoshis, who tried and covered the TikTok makeup trend for Allure, wrote, "My skin looked like a porcelain doll's. It was smooth and all of my pores and blemishes vanished temporarily."

Beyond thinking about your pores more than ever before, some have pointed out the inherently wasteful nature of the trend. In an Instagram Story documented by the Subreddit r/BeautyGuruChatter, makeup artist Robert Welsh shared, "It's extremely wasteful and in no way satisfying. Have yet to see a real life picture/video unfiltered away from studio lighting, where the results of doing this, then using loads of powder on top, is an amazing-looking skin texture." Trakoshis also pointed out that, "I personally believe that this layering effect is just a waste of foundation."

The main take away from all this? However you apply your foundation, whether it's "excessive" or not, is completely up to you. If you happen to have a few extra bottles lying around and want to try the trend, then go for it — at the end of each video, Duxbury's skin looks as made up as any high-glam photoshoot. It's decidedly more editorial than a skin tint and cream blush, but if you're after pore-less, contoured, and freckle-free makeup, then putting the "full" into full-coverage foundation has always been an excellent way to achieve that.

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