Best Foundations for Fair and Pale Skin – Face Swatches of 49 Foundations | Cruelty Free & Vegan

Best Foundations for Fair and Pale Skin – Face Swatches of 49 Foundations | Cruelty Free & Vegan

Hey guys welcome back and hello to you new
people too! Just a quick reminder to go ahead and hit that subscribe button down below so
you never miss a video. Today I am bringing you a labor of love. This is a very labor
intensive video but I’ve wanted to do it for quite a while. I did 49 face swatches of different
foundations that I own. Many of them are vegan. I’m excited to share them with you. One of
the biggest reasons that I wanted to do this video is that I feel like a lot of times people
feel that if you are fair or pale that there aren’t a lot of foundation options for you.
And so I decided to go through my huge collection of foundations and say hey here are some options
that are available. So 10 years or so ago, it was really difficult to find foundations
that matched my skintone. Now I have a much easier time finding a match, even if I do
have to add a white mixer to it. There are a lot of great foundation mixers out there.
On my blog I will have pictures of the swatch as well as the blended out face. So you can
look at everything individually too. I chose to shoot this outside in indirect natural
light. It was kind of a cloudy day out so there was sun and then sun behind the clouds.
I didn’t use any of my studio lights, I just wanted to use natural light to try to capture
as close to true color as possible. A quick thing I want to note is that before I ever
put on foundation I put on 2 things – 1 is the Lucy Minerals Ambrosia for Dry skin oil
to hydrate my face. I put on SPF. This is MD Solar Sciences SPF 50 mineral cream. It’s
great for sensitive dry skin like mine. I love it. This is what I use to protect my
skin from the sun every single day. Now the day I did this I did it outside, it was about
80 degrees, my hair was a hot mess because after the video I went and took a shower and
washed it. I wanted to wait until after I’d done all of this. My skin was cleansed and
hydrated before I started. In between swatches I used Coconut Oil to remove the foundation
and lightly hydrate my face. I did swatch these quickly so they’re not perfect swatches
but when you’re doing 49 swatches you know you’re going to get tired at some point. I
didn’t wait for any of these to oxidize so if you want me to do individual reviews on
any of these foundations be sure to let me know in the comments below. Just so you know,
I match my foundation to my neck and my chest because my face looks darker than my neck
and chest because I have a lot of surface redness from my rosacea. So for a foundation
to match me I’m looking for it to match my chest and my neck. That’s what I consider
a match. If it matches my face and my face looks darker than my neck and chest, I don’t
consider it a match. If it matches my face and I don’t look darker than the rest of me,
that’s fine. So right now I’m wearing the FOM Facial Enhancer in Light and I didn’t
add anything to it. All I did was use the Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme in L1 Neutral
under my eyes just to hide a little bit of darkness, so that gives you some idea. At
the end of this video I will tell you which foundations are my favorite. And without further ado, I’m going to jump in because there are a ton of swatches! So I hope that this video gives you hope that there’s a foundation match out there for you if you’re pale or fair skinned A couple of these do look terrible and I put them in because I thought it would make you laugh. The Go Natural One is just so horrible. I hope that you find a foundation that you like or that you’re interested in checking out. My personal favorites right now are the Idun Minerals Norrsken Foundation in Jorunn, which is the liquid foundation that’s really pale, The FOM Facial Enhancer in Light, which is what I’m wearing in this video, the Buxom Tickle the Ivory, which is like a tinted moisturizer, the Natasha Denona Face Glow, the Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint the Kat Von D Light 41 Neutral, and the RCMA Color Process Foundation in KA-1. With the Kat Von D I add Nyx Opalescent, and with the Buxom, the Glossier, and the Natasha Denona I add a little bit of white to it to make it a better match so that I’m not dark face, light neck and chest, but those are my picks Before I forget I have a bunch of new stuff in my Spreadshirt Shop so I wanted to show you the designs. I’m currently wearing a cruelty free beauty shirt in a size large, it’s a scoop neck. It has Phaedra on the front of it. And a purple design that says cruelty free beauty I also picked up a reusable shopping bag that’s in the same design with Phaedra. This is the Makeup Is My Magic Shirt, and this is a scoop neck size large. it’s going to fit just like this, same size. This is Makeup Is My Art, it’s also a scoop neck, it’s going to fit just like this, same size. And I’ve had this one for a while, when it doubt, add lipstick, and this comes in a bunch of different colors, like lime green and blue and pink and purple. So hopefully there’s a color you like. Anyway, what do you think of all the foundations? Which one is your favorite? Please be sure to let me know in the comments below. If you like this video, give it a thumbs up and share. I love it when you share my videos, it really makes my day bright. Thanks so much for watching, bye!


  • Emily Rachel Gilley says:


  • Emily Rachel Gilley says:

    Courtney is the Idun Minerals foundation moisturizing or dewy? I wonder if I could wear it in the summer. Unfortunately around NC in the summer I usually have to switch to those bulletproof long wear formulas.

  • Natasha Lena says:

    Merci for this…the RCMA looked incrediblie naturelle! I must try it…what to you think of the Born This Way in snow? You did try it, but am no sure…Is it a good foundation or does it oxidise in a bad way? Is theย Beautie Balm better? Am actuallie a tone or 2 fairer than ur chest, am quite pale(which of the 2 would work better for naturelle coverage?) Last question, the Tarte Confidence powder-cream foundation, what are ur thoughts on how it wears…would you say is the best wear out of the 3 you tried from Tarte? Am juste soย veryย grateful for this video& trulie can no Thank you enough; Pleaseย forgive if ma English is no parfait; Bizette xoxoxo๐Ÿ’• (I apologize for heving ask so many questions in one comment)๐Ÿ’—

  • Morgan Kirby says:

    have you tried the Jane Iredale Glow Time foundation? it's my favorite! the palest one is super pale and I love it. it's similar to kat von d's foundation, but not as thick. to me, at least. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Jenn S. says:

    This is amazing and you have just saved me so much money! I have a few questions; where did you got the pump for the hybrid gel and does it pump okay? Was the Paula's choice her new serum or the original?

    quick note: after the Tarte RFOTS, you showed the bag for Nars Siberia. I picked up Hard Candy in porcelain and it adds just enough yellow to the Idun Minerals to make it work for me and I finally have a match! Thank you for doing all of this and in natural lighting ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • Diana Antal says:

    Thank you for taking the time to put this together! It's super helpful! I'm using the Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Foundation right now. I love it, but I want to branch out. With the warmer weather coming, I would love to see a video about favorite pale skin face products with SPF: tinted moisturizers, BBs, CCs, primer and foundation.

  • L.D.O.K says:

    wow u have a lot of foundations. This helped me a lot color wise etc.

  • Marmalade Queen says:

    Wow! This was so helpful. Thanks for your effort!

  • Brittany Verduzco says:

    Lol omg I imagine your skin melted off like that guy in Raiders of the Lost Ark after you finished filming this. You're an absolute saint for making this video! Super helpful!

  • Dizzyknitsandcurls says:

    thank you for this! your so cute, you could tell the ones you loved during the swatches you would just light up!

  • Rebekah Hurst says:

    You are really making me want to try Idun minerals! I'd love to see a review on the PUR Bare it all.

  • Cristiana Helm says:

    Wow! What a great project! Thank you for doing this b/c it is really helpful. Have you recommended great white mixers? Now please go mask your poor face!!

  • Sarah Morrison says:

    Holy jesus, this is a labour of love! Thank you so much for doing this…it's fascinating how many takes on "porcelain" exist, isn't it?

  • Sonia Stevens says:


  • CforCalamity says:

    I love your facial expressions, especially when the shade was awful. What the heck was with the Go Natural one?! That's their palest shade? I was RED.

  • D Squared says:

    Do you need a primer with the IDUN Minerals foundation?

  • Rebecca R. says:

    Very helpful! Thanks for doing this.

  • AliceWonderbra says:


  • valkolakk says:

    Wow, I'm pretty impressed by how nice the finish of that wet n wild foundation is. I'm always struggling to find a light enough foundation that is also yellow enough, so these swatches help me compare the undertones. Thanks!

  • Zahava23 says:

    Omg that LA Girl one ๐Ÿ™ˆ Hahaha. Thanks for doing this! I'm currently wearing CoverFX (the one you own also) in N10. It's a great match and formula.

  • leticia simpson says:


  • DnD_Lioness says:

    I was pretty sure that MAC is not cruelty-free as they sell in China. I hope that one day they pull their product from that country so that I can try them out and not worry about animal testing.

  • brandy troutt says:


  • Downhome Geek says:

    Thank you so much for doing this!!! I have pretty pale, cool skin too & it is hard to find foundations that don't have a yellow undertone or that oxidize to orange on my skin. I always have to pick stuff up online bc the lightest colors seem to be out in the stores. So this helps immensely!!! Thank you so much!!! I am going to have to give the Idun foundations a try. They look gorgeous on you!!!

  • blahhlucy says:

    Thank you so much for doing this, that's so much effort! Some constructive criticism though, it would be helpful to see swatches of the foundations next to each other as it's difficult to see the differences between all the ones that do match you. Apart from that good video ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Megan Ivanyos says:

    Fantastic video! Thank you for making it. It will be very helpful for my next foundation purchase. Agree with your picks. I also liked the liquid bare minerals one on you.

  • Daena O. says:

    Holy crap, that Go Natural one… is ANYONE's skin that color??? what are they thinking??

    Anyway, this is an amazing resource — thank you so much for doing it! I think I got a rosacea flareup just watching what you put your face through! ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Kool Klawz says:

    I feel your pain! I have a hard time finding a match myself, because most companies give their darker shades a red base, but I need a yellow base. I have several too-red foundations, as a result, but I hate throwing away makeup, so I use it to practice, lol. Bless your heart for doing all this work…well done! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Christine says:

    can you please do a whole review on the milani 2 in 1 foundation, shade 00?

  • SarahJane says:

    I'm curious about the Paula's Choice Serum foundation! Also the Tarte ROTS Water foundation. Oh man, that all in one foundation…
    Hun, your poor face! Mine would be stinging raw! You are an absolute trooper. I thought lip swatches were hard to do, but this looks rough. Thanks so much! It's actually really helpful. I see a couple on this list I need to try. <3

  • IvyMUA says:

    I'm far from fair but you have me wanting to try that idun foundation so bad!!

  • Norah Salazar says:

    Wow this is quite a bounty. I had RCMA a while ago but wasn't a fan, so phased it out. My faves are still Face Atelier Ultra Pro #2 for pale skin and Kevyn Aucoin SSE.

  • Allison Cohen says:

    49 foundations, wow! I can't believe you did all of this. But what an amazing resource for super fair skinned girls. I need to try makeup from Mehron and RCMA one of these days.

  • nadasade says:

    Thank you for doing this! I just realized I'm a lot darker than you, Or maybe I'm just very yellow compared to you. The foundations that are way too dark for you are just a little too dark for me (I can just barely make the Milani foundation work in the summer). I'm concerned though, is the BareMinerals Complexion Rescue not vegan?? The ingredients appear to be vegan to me.

  • LabNYorkie says:

    This video, for me, is research. My face also appears darker than my neck and chest due to rosacea. Covering with liquid or powder foundation leaves my face with an odd hue that you wouldn't say is tan. It's just peculiar. The rest of my body is very pale (my idiot brother used to call me Casper the Friendly Ghost every summer) so finding a good match to my body isn't easy. I need medium coverage, preferably with a velvet-like finish.
    I saved the names and color number/number of 3 that you swatched (an Urban Decay, a Too Faced and Paula's Choice). The 4th is that mini palette. I understand, in theory, companies creating yellow-leaning foundations for those of us who are pale with a lot of red in our skin but, it seems they tend to go overboard with yellow. The end result being that bizarre not-quite tan color after application. Thank you so much for this video. As I mentioned on Instagram, you seriously took one for the team. My rosacea cheeks would've been on fire had I attempted what you've done.

  • BeautyJudy says:

    I want to try the Buxom!!!

  • Liz Bzz says:

    please thank your face for enduring this!!! lol ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ

  • Erika Costello says:

    I saw a version with only a few foundations? Everything seems to be glitchy and hate me, lately. lol

  • Cosmetopia Digest says:

    Holy wow! So many brands!

  • My Newest Addiction says:

    Holy moly. That is a lot of swatching and applying.

  • Marcia Friedman says:

    It's so interesting to see what companies consider fair or porcelain. Some look 3 shades too dark. I want the Idun liquid for sure and I'm interested in the Natasha Denone. Does it have fragrance? I had to give away my blush because of the fragrance.

  • Mai T Ly says:

    49 foundations?! I'm SO impressed with how many you found and your dedication to trying so many!

  • Cindy Ingalls says:

    Thanks so much for doing this!

  • Polarbelle says:

    oh em gee, did you do all of this in one sitting?!?! I can't imagine doing it PERIOD, much less in one sitting. Bravo!

  • Sissi Over40 says:

    I love that Ulta foundation too- I could never get the Milani in my shade! Wayyy too dark.

  • Glitter Geek says:

    Wow, thank you and your face so much for doing this! It's crazy how many different colors "Fair" can be :P. I'm really curious about the Buxom, the Pur, and the Charlotte Tilbury (since I've heard those really look like skin rather than makeup). Any clue as to how those would sit on more combo skin? I've heard the Tarte Rainforest of the Sea is also natural looking though I've heard mixed reviews. Again, thank you so much for this labor of love, it is deeply appreciated!

  • Glamorable says:

    I am OBSESSED with Idun Minerals Jorunn! It's the absolute best foundation match for my skin that I've ever found, undertones and all. They have a wonderful shade range!

  • Amanda Vargas says:

    Really appreciate the work you put into this. I was wondering, do you think the NARS radiant creamy concealer in chantilly could work with the idun foundation? I'm going back and forth with many swatches and I'm not sure if it's quite light enough for Jorunn.

  • Edita M. says:

    Very informative and helpful. I had not looked at some of the brands you swatched but will. The IT Cosmetics CC powder foundation is also very fair, and I am liking the new ivory 02 shade in Bareminerals powder foundation. I do also like the Laura Mercier Silk Creme Foundation but I guess there's still some debate if it's cruelty free (I only use this for a night out). Another thing that is hydrating helper with serums/oils and not greasy is hydrosols. I recently started using this in combination with them and it's keeping the hydration throughout the day. I also use it as a setting spray. I picked up one from Evan Healy at whole foods.

  • Jennifer Lyons says:

    I was looking for the MDSolar and I found it at for around $35.00 but it's nearly sold out, it must be a great product!

  • Lisa Heath says:

    Wow that's a LOT of work! Great comparison and swatch job! I'm just in awe

  • Phoenix Rising says:

    Hello AND thank you for your hard work.please , could you help me ??? i AM super pale but I have very dry skin , , which one is the best ???

  • Kayla Thomas says:

    May I ask what your favorite one out of all these are?

  • LabNYorkie says:

    I'm rewatching so I can further narrow down which foundation to pick. My brother's wedding is in June. I know it'll likely be very warm and possibly muggy. Given that, the rosacea and pictures, I want to pick something that'll hold up well and cover well. I swear, I took less time researching a car. Though the rosacea plays a big role- my skin is so sensitive and that awful stinging I've felt from bad reactions is something I'm desperate to avoid.

  • jenny koppy says:

    Whew! Thank You for testing all those! I was exhausted just watching you! It does look like you do have some great options from which to choose๐Ÿ˜

  • Alyson Ben-Yehuda says:

    I think you just won the pale girl olympics. What a tremendous resource!!!! Thank you.

  • Liana says:

    I see that the Mehron cream foundation is in shade 3 — does that mean it comes in even lighter shades? If so, that is amazing. I might have to look into that!

  • Gabrielle L says:

    Great selection here! I use Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation in L41 Neutral too and can attest to the fact that it's perfect for those of us who are a lighter shade of pale.


    I mean to comment earlier, but this video is AMAZING. Really appreciate your hard work! Love your facial expression and hand motion when the foundation was a perfect match. I showed my Mom the video and now she does that whenever she puts on a new foundation and sees that it's good, haha! I have the Tarte Double Duty Beauty powder makeup in Fair Neutral and when I was buying it in Ulta the girl who was trying to "help" me told me that it was WAY too light for me. Uh, sorry, I know what works for me! I put it on the other day and yes, it was a perfect match just the way you showed in the video! I bought the Tarte brush to put it on, but maybe I should try the Real Techniques one you were using.

  • Amy says:

    thank you for this courtney! had a stockpile of L'Oreal BB in light. tough time finding something comparable. bought Physicians Formula CC light/med and it was way too dark! will have to go to Sephora. dry sensitive skin too. prob should use face oil.

  • Samantha Rausch says:

    this video is very helpful!! I have the same skin but I have extremely dry skin so that's like a double bummer because I don't believe I'm allowed to be wearing High coverage foundations

  • Linnea Lanzky says:

    Thank you very much for this video! Do you have a video that features the Idun mineral powder foundation in Johrun?

  • IamBonnieBBon says:

    ((((YOU)))) That was an amazing piece of work and care! I can't imagine how much time and effort went into this beautiful love letter to fair and pale makeup lovers. I'm beyond impressed. Srsly, I'm at a loss what to say….freaking BRAVO! The ton of work you had to do just in planning and preparing…..this is getting embarrassing lol but I give you major applause, much respect and shares every chance I get!

  • Oni Pot says:

    Please could you do an individual review of the Josie maran foundatiom ? that wold be so amazing x

  • Ndl Moore says:

    Oh my gosh! Thank you so much for the link to this video!

  • Ndl Moore says:

    Are there any of these you think would work best with combination to oily skin. Some times my face is really dry and others it's super oily especially during the summer.

  • Hope2NoU95 says:

    You are a dream youtuber for the pale skin cruelty free women. I am as light as you with a yellow undertone.I also watched your rant foundation video is exactly what these companies need to do. Thanks great video.

  • Jana Williams says:

    Hey Courtney I Hope You Are Having a Great Weekend So Far! Thanks So Much for Sharing These Awesome Foundations for Fair Skin and the Fact That They are Cruelty Free & Vegan is a Huge Bonus! You Wouldn't Believe How Hard of a Time I Have Trying to Find a Good Foundation That is Light Enough for Me! Some of Them Might Look Ok Right When I Put Them On but Less Than an Hour Later They Oxidize and Turn Orange On Me! I'm On a Tight Budget Right Now and it's Nearly Impossible to Find a Great Quality Foundation That is Also Light Enough For Me! I Think I'm Going to Look into the Kat Von D Foundations Because I SawnYour Review On One of Them and it Looked & Sounded Amazing & Perfect for Me! I Also Agree With PumpkinsBlackcats Who Commented Below About Wanting Milano to Come Out With a Lighter Foundation Shade Because I Really Like a Lot of Milani's Products and They are Such a Great Bargain! Well Thanks Again for Sharing With Me Courtney, I Really Appreciate it! Have a Wonderful Weekend Sweetie! – Jana

  • Kody Keplinger says:

    Thank you for this video! Unfortunately, because of my color vision, I can't really see what undertones some of these are pulling. I'm trying to find a new foundation – I have Born This WAy, and it's worked well for a year or so, but my skin tends to get oily in the summer and I notice it breaks up in those areas, even when I set with powder. I'm somewhere between Snow & Porcelain, and in Color FX terms I could be either P10 or P20 depending on the season. Any suggestions? I keep trying cruelty free drug store foundations and they all end up pulling too yellow or orange on me. :-/ And I'm afraid to invest in a more expensive foundation if there's a chance it's going to be yellow.

  • Jen Savage says:

    By any chance, have you found a foundation match for Shape Tape in Fair?

  • Marianne Pendleton says:

    Great video! Thank you!

  • Jennifer Reesor says:

    Literally I was ecstatic for this video because I'm also in the fair skin category and I have a very hard time color matching. I have neutral undertones and love a medium to full coverage. I also do what you do I always match my neck. I'm literally making a list of the ones you prefer so I can try to find another holy grail I do love my mufe hd liquid foundation. And thank you for searching so many I can only imagine after 49 swatches. But you did it to help a huge audience of us that have the same issue and that means everything! I've always loved your videos and blog!

  • Jennifer Reesor says:

    What's a great white mix in I have an almost brand new bottle of Born this way and it's way too dark trying to find a mix in so I can use it without a spray tan lol. Thanks for any input I look up to you๐Ÿ’“

  • Muzzii89 says:

    So helpful, thank you!

  • Maria Ta says:

    Thank you a lot for this video!!! I was looking for natural light swatches to decide what shade of Tarte I needed. Unfortunately, i have already recieved it in Fair-light neutral which is so yellow( I have similar complexion (very fair neck and pinkish face), so I hope porcelain will work for me ๐Ÿ™‚ will order again. Sigh. Thank you for the honest review.

  • sandra.s. adamson says:

    I really appreciate how you tell us that you use a sunscreen first. A lot of Youtubers don't do this and it annoys me so much. Especially when they also do a video on "why is my skin so bad?" Well, try using sunscreen first.

  • Glo Patterson says:

    WOW first that you have 49 different foundations! How long do you keep your foundations before you trash them? I have discovered that after watching this I am not spending enough time blending my foundations in. Thanks

  • J Harris says:

    I am a pasty white – so thank you for this.

  • Melissa Stephens says:

    Thank you so much Iโ€™m pale and itโ€™s friggen hard sometimes because if your not porcelain but not ivory either the options arenโ€™t large so I really love this!!

  • Ashley B. says:

    Needed this!! Thank you!

  • C Squad says:

    I really love ๐Ÿ’• the red as well. But the blue is brighter. And yah. You are just so pretty. ๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—๐Ÿ˜—

  • manic hispanic says:

    Can you do a video on white mixes, thereโ€™s so many on the market now? I know Makeup atelier &MUFE Sell colorful mixers to darken Foundation and even fix the undertone, would love to see ur reviews on these.

  • TheAsianCutie93 says:

    Iโ€™m sort of stunned by how dark some of these โ€œfairโ€ shades are. I would consider myself light (definitely not fair or porcelain), but most of these foundation shades are my shade or even my summer foundation! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ It must be such a pain, to find the right color AND formulation when youโ€™re super pale or deep.

  • Claire Kennedy says:

    Do some of these companies think that naming a product โ€œopalโ€ or snow will make it lighter? SO many of these are yellow howww.

  • Briana Petersen says:

    I am so thankful for this. Thank you <3 definitely subscribing.

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