Shade: Hannah 490 (fair with subtle olive undertones)
Rating: 4/5 stars
Review: Little did this foundation know when it arrived on my doorstep that it would have to jump through every precarious hoop a foundation can be put through: 100-degree heat and a trying 16 hours of wear. (Yep, I did the most damning thing a beauty editor can do and slept in the stuff.) However, in an epic plot twist that I’ve never experienced with a clean foundation formula, it passed every test with flying colors. (For the record, nearly every other natural foundation I’ve tried has melted off my face three hours after application and at even the mere mention of sweat or exercise.) So yes, I’m extremely impressed with this foundation.
What I love most about this foundation is how beautifully and smoothly it applies and blends into the skin. It does that “your skin but better” thing, which is entirely the point of foundation, right? I’m pretty sure I actually murmured aloud “holy shit, this is beautiful” as I used my Beautyblender to buff and press it into my skin. That type of jaw-dropping, immediate reaction rarely happens for me. It smells lovely, which is important (for me) when it comes to makeup because it’s sitting right beneath your nose. While the finish is slightly more luminous and dewy than I would normally go for, I found that setting it with a touch of powder easily toned down any areas I felt looked too shiny. And again, let’s remember I was battling high humidity and heat, so I’m not sure it would always end up looking quite so glowy.
I ended up wearing this foundation overnight (I know, I know), and I was completely surprised when I woke up in the morning to find that it still looked *almost* as good as when I first applied it. Really. It only looked slightly worse for wear than my non-clean foundations that tout super-long, 24-hour wear. I did set it with a non-clean setting spray, which probably helped matters. I’ve done that before with natural foundations, and they’ve still looked smudgy and all-around messy a few hours afterward.
This foundation doesn’t apply, look, or wear off like any other clean foundation I’ve tried. It’s far superior, and it even comes in a beautiful glass bottle that makes it feel really expensive. I’m impressed all around. The only reason I can’t give it a full five stars is that the finish is a little too dewy for my taste. But all in all, Exa’s High Fidelity Foundation has set a new standard in the industry for both quality and inclusivity. It’s time for all of the other brands in the clean-beauty space to level up!