Cushion Foundation & Liquid Compacts; the next big thing or a passing fad?
Cushion Foundation has been popular in Asia for some time now and they are popping up all over the place in the United States, but what are they? What do they do, and most importantly, do you need one?
What is a "cushion foundation"?
Cushion Foundation may sound very intriguing especially if you've read in to all of the hype and claims surrounding the "liquid compact" dispensing method, but it's really a simple concept. Housed inside what appears to be a traditional cream or powder compact, is a sponge which is saturated with a liquid foundation. You simply press a brush, sponge, or your fingers against the foundation soaked sponge and dispense the foundation that way. Typically, inside the compact is a separate internal lid which must be tightly secured after each use to prevent the foundation from drying out.
Are there special benefits to using Cushion Foundations?
Many people enjoy the idea of being able to touch up their liquid foundation on the go, and for the most part, Cushion Foundations do allow touch ups to be easily achieved, but not to a revolutionary extent.
The claims surrounding the capabilities of each particular cushion foundation are as wide and varied as the claims that go hand in hand with any skincare or cosmetic products. You may see Cushion Makeup promising sun protection, skin lightening/whitening, wrinkle repair or dark spot correcting, but, just like with any other skincare or foundation formula, the results possible are limited to the inclusion of beneficial ingredients and antioxidants.
Because Cushion Foundations are a relatively new addition to the vast cosmetic marketplace, the formulas of Cushion Foundations do tend to utilize the latest technology with things like micro pigments and a silky-soft, luxurious feeling finish that is comparatively long wearing, but again, you're likely to find the same type of formula in many of the newer foundations that have made their debut the past few years.
Are their any downfalls to Cushion Foundations?
Most people should know by now that jar packaging is not the best way to store skincare. The routine exposure to sunlight and air degrades many sensitive and unstable ingredients rendering them totally unbeneficial, and Cushion Foundations pose the same issue. This is something to keep in mind if you're looking for any benefits from your makeup, (OR if you're bacteria conscious since there really is no 100% sanitary way to use a Cushion Foundation.)
One of the biggest issues and things to be aware of when considering Cushion Makeup is the price. While the price for different brands can vary from $15-$80 just like any liquid or cream foundation, what changes significantly is the amount of product you actually receive.
A standard liquid foundation usually comes in a 1 ounce container while your typical cream or cream-powder formula averages quantities of 9-10 grams. While the amount of a cream foundation may be significantly less, that is offset by the fact that cream foundations are usually much more concentrated than liquid foundation which are (for lack of a better word) watered down.
One would expect, that because Cushion Foundation is simply a liquid foundation in a compact, that the amount given would be on par with liquid foundations, but instead, cosmetic companies usually sell Cushion Foundation in compacts containing only 10 grams/ml of product, yet they charge nearly as much (if not more) than they do for 1 ounce of a comparable liquid foundation! If that wasn't enough, the design of the cushion foundation compact is such that you will never be able to utilize all 10 grams of product because the sponge will absorb at least 20% of the total weight, and you will never be able to get all of the product out. I have drained numerous cushion compacts thoroughly to see exactly what I got for my money and only once did I ever manage to fill more than a 6 ml sample bottle.
Are their any alternatives for those who genuinely enjoy using a Cushion Compact to apply their foundation?
If you're tight with a dime but you like using a compact for your liquid foundation, all you need to do is make your own. (Yes, seriously.) You'll need an empty, airtight compact which you can find on eBay and a cushion (sponge) which fits into it. You can absolutely reuse a compact and sponge from any formula you've already used up, just be sure to disinfect the sponge with some rubbing alcohol first and let dry. Then you can just pour about 5-10 ml of any liquid foundation (as long as its not fast setting) and you're good to go; plus you'll only use 15-30% of your foundation to completely fill the compact!
Are Cushion Foundations here to stay?
No one can predict for sure whether Cushion Foundation will catch on in the United States, but if Asia is an indicator, we'll probably be seeing a whole bunch of Cushion Foundations launching in the near future because Cushion foundations are likely to be heavily pushed by cosmetic companies considering they're obviously a very profitable endeavor- (selling 1/3 of the product for 100% of the price is just smart business no matter what line of work you're in), which makes being a well informed consumer all that much more imperative!