As a new high street brand unveils a new range of foundation shades open to the public, available in what they say to be a diverse array of shades from neutral, warm and cool tones, I jump at the excitement of being able to readily access this new product on the market, excited to grasp my fingers around, and give it a good old blogger review to see whether or not it falls into my top ten hot or not list.

Pacing the streets to head to the retailer that will presumably stock the latest foundation, I walk through the automatic doors and search for the beauty section, at a halt I scan the shelves looking for this diverse range. And to my surprise or to my ever so expected knowledge, the shelves are stocked with every shade of beige, the closest to my skin tone being the darkest tan sitting in the corner, which will no doubt turn my skin into an ashy mess if I were to use this shade. I ponder and stand wondering where is the exclusive range I have been hearing about and viewing on my television screen. Too many a times has this happened to me, and presumably many other women of colour (woc) trailing the high-street to find their match, to find that their is none. As I ask a member of staff about the rest of the range, I am told... they do not stock the whole range or the rest is 'out of stock' even though week after week I pop in and have never seen the 'out of stock shades'.

Of course it means I have to leave my mission for an affordable high-street foundation and instead head towards the department stores that will stock more shades from high-end beauty cosmetic lines, but of course with a much higher price tag. The jump from a mere £8-10 foundation to £20-30 foundation is not always in my price limit, let alone anyone else's, so where has this expectation for woc to venture out to department stores and buy a brand that will more likely cater to, and colour match them. Why aren't high-street retailers stocking all of the brands line, if it's due to the fact the target market is women who are not in the woc bracket then surely department stores would be doing the same thing, to increase sales and profit? But it can't be the answer, as many department stores along with well known brands stock whole ranges, all shades that can colour match a wide range of people. So my question is, what are the high-street retailers doing? Now of course many shops do stock all of the range, but you will come to find many do not.

After reading an article by Stylist Magazine, I was in the midst of writing this post, in my notebook where I draft all of my posts before typing them up and letting them free for all to read. I took part in a Facebook conversation by Stylist Magazine, and this is when I noticed even more that my post is more relevant than ever. Why should woc have to pay more for beauty products to ensure the correct colour match? Or for treatments at salons, beauty parlours, hairdressers etc.
Read Stylist Magazine article here.

I have luckily been able to colour match with many brands, and trialled/reviewed as many as possible to become a source for woc to see what is out there for women to reach for. No longer do you have to reach for the same products over and over again. Many people are familiar with MAC Cosmetics, and as much as I love my Studio Fix Fluid in either NC50 or NC55, I do want to be able to swap between brands to cater to my desired look, of course we don't all want to be forking out money for make-up which is understandable, but depending on your price tag, I'm sure once you finish reading this post you will find at least one brand you can turn to.

Many overlook brands such as Clinique, without realising that many of their foundations offer and cater to woc although being over the £20 price tag, rest assured they have a very wide range of shades suitable for woc. I particularly have fallen in love with the Beyond Perfecting 2 in 1 Foundation in Ginger by Clinique. A foundation that is both infused with concealer and foundation to give you a ultimate flawless coverage, at £25 it is not the most expensive, and I can hand on heart say I have had this foundation since April and haven't even made a dent in how much product I have used, a tiny amount honestly goes a long. And while were at it, I'm sure we are all familiar with brands such as Bobbi Brown and Lancome. When I do have money and time to purchase Lancome, I reach for my much adored Teint Idole Foundation in number 10, this is a perfect match to my skin tone and the formula lasts all day without oxidising or creasing. And for Bobbi Brown a good old favourite of mine would have to be the Skin Foundation in Warm Almond. Again these cosmetic ranges have a more expensive price tag ranging from £28-£30 (depending on where you purchase), but none the less if you can get your hands on them they are great brands for woc, that have such a wide range of foundation shades.
Other than the obvious brands that are embraced in the department stores, I wanted to alert your attention to brands that may not get as much coverage, but are certainly fine contenders in my eyes. These brands have a loyal following, cater to their customers, have a very large range of shades in regards to all of their product range, and are possibly more affordable and more attainable to people like me and you. Not everyday do we want to be heading out of our way to department stores to repurchase MAC, Bobbi Brown and the others, or searching on the internet. Make up Forever is a brand I have been loving for just over two years now, I fell in love with their HD Foundation in N173 and the Full Cover Concealer in 14, when first venturing into IMATS back in 2013 and just had to get my hands on it. Ever since then it has been a product I repurchase continuously, previously only available at Guru Make-Up Emporium or online, it was pretty hard to get your hands on in the UK but now Makeup Forever has hit Debenhams so can be located but is still not as readily available as if you were to purchase on the high-street.
La Girl is a beauty bloggers dream for their creamy blend-able Pro Concealers, with such a good range to match you no matter who you are. These concealers are super easy to use and are so affordable and readily available on Ebay, that's how popular they are. If your not interested in a more expensive concealer, then this is certainly the one for you. I have come to find that I use the LA Girl concealer particularly for highlighting (in the colour Fawn) and concealing blemishes (in the colour Toffee) and it does such a good job.

The leading woc beauty brand Fashion Fair is another cosmetics company that has catered for woc for many years, but people seem to forget about this luxurious brand with such an affordable price tag. Not only do they have a very wide range of foundations/concealers, you can get all your beauty needs from one place including their incredible skincare range. I have personally been using Fashion Fair from the age of 16 till now at age 24, and will continue to repurchase again and again. Fashion Fair is a brand you can be proud of, a brand that caters to all your needs and a brand that can colour match you in an instant, just visit your closest Fashion Fair counter. After being able to review the True Finish Foundation in Alluring Cocoa by Fashion Fair for only £23, it has quickly become the product I reach for most when I want to achieve a glowy flawless look and the weather is absolutely boiling, this foundation stays in tact without slipping and sliding throughout the day. A winner for being Summer ready! Fashion Fair is stocked in Debenhams, Boots and online.

Cake Cosmetics has recently been a new venture for me, but none the less a brand that can certainly run alongside the big dogs with a more affordable price tag, especially great for those who are newly venturing into the world of make-up. Knowing I was going to write this post I got in contact with the ever so wonderful Stevie, founder of Cake Cosmetics and within an instant she was able to colour match me just by knowing other foundation shades I use by other brands. I was matched to the Cake Cosmetics cream foundation compact in N95 similar to that of MAC NC50 but for almost half the price. Your looking at a foundation for only £13! YES £13, so I just had to purchase, you can create an effortlessly airbrushed matte flawless look with this creamy formula that won't break your bank balance. The Cake Cosmetics concealer in Butterscotch has also become a favourite of mine, a full coverage concealer that can blend well, and works as a perfect highlight for only £5! Which is super affordable that I want to buy so much more so it never runs out. The duo work so well together you don't really need to reach for much else, a little bit of blush, mascara and something on the lips and your ready to go, just like that! A full review will be coming soon on Sincerely Shug, so stay tuned for that.

I had always heard of Cover FX* but never went ahead to investigate and purchase the brand further, until not long ago I became obsessed and just had to get in touch with Cover FX themselves. After having a long discussion with their PR team, I was colour matched and sent over the Cover FX liquid foundation in G80 which is heavenly to use. Cover FX is a brand that many are not yet familiar with and I want to draw everyone's attention to this brand, although not readily available in the UK you are able to purchase online or from House of Fraser. Cover FX also offers a good quality range of shades, from pink, neutral and golden tones,they have you covered. A bit more pricer than your average foundation at £34 this brand is certainly not average. With it's light weight, oil free formula you can achieve a natural looking smooth flawless finish, either with a sheer coverage or building it up to successfully reach a fuller coverage. Need I say more? This is a brand that you should add on your Christmas Wish List.

These few brands have been products I reach for constantly, and as well as sharing with you a little about them, here are a few swatches:
There is many of things wrong with how the high-street stores are catering for women of colour, and although this doesn't show everything that is available on the market, it is a round up of the brands that are catering for all shades, that I particularly am fond of. No matter whether you are tanned, golden or deep in skin tone there is something out there for us all. Yes many of the brands featured are still more in price than your average high-street retailer, but at the moment why settle for average when you can have exceptional.



  1. This is a fantastic post and touches on such an important topic. I have medium skintone (I'm indian) and I also suffer with the same problem in a lot of drugstores. There is no reason women of colour should have to pay excess amounts of money for a product when their local drugstore should cater to them.

    Great post, loved the read and your writing style.

    Aarti | xo

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