Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Battle of the Long-Wear Foundations: Revlon ColourStay vs. Estee Lauder Double Wear

Hi, everyone! Today's post pits two highly popular long-wear foundations against each other. In particular, it will provide a side-by-side comparison of the formidable Revlon ColourStay Liquid Makeup Combination/Oily formula in Buff vs. Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in 1N1 Ivory Nude. An epic battle indeed!

I apologize in advance for the cheesy-looking graphic below. Sometimes on a grad student's (and Maid of Honor's) time schedule, hours with Photoshop isn't feasible ;)


When planning my makeup for my sister's wedding, I was certain of one thing: I needed a foundation that would stay put all day. One that would remain true during the ceremony, an afternoon of photos, and hours of dancing! I have been using and loving Revlon ColourStay for years, but the upcoming event had me curious about whether another foundation might do a better job at lasting on my combination/oily skin. I opted for Estee Lauder Double Wear, as it has received tons of hype over the years for its good coverage and impressive staying power.

I figured the most scientific way to compare them was, quite literally, side-by-side. I applied ColourStay to half of my face and Double Wear on the other, then went about my busy day, paying attention periodically to how my face was looking!

Here is a photo of me wearing ColourStay, on the right side of my face (your left) only. As you can see, it does a great job at masking redness and imperfections on my skin:

Wearing Revlon ColourStay in Buff on the Left side, no foundation on the Right

And yes, it was an early  morning, hence my sleepy, puffy eyes!

Now here is a photo of me after applying Double Wear to the left side of my face (your right). Luckily Buff and Ivory Nude were great colour matches, so my face looked fairly even despite the two different shades and formulas.
Wearing foundation only; Colourstay Buff on the Left and Double Wear in Ivory Nude on the Right


And here is my finished makeup look, including a layer of mattifying setting powder over top of the foundations:
Revlon ColourStay on Left, Estee Lauder Double Wear on Right

And then the experiment began! I photographed my face at various times throughout the day. Below, I've labelled the amount of time since application and noted my general impressions at each stage.

As a quick note, the day was rather warm and I was quite active, both factors that would have increased oil production on my face. What better way to test the foundations than under (semi) extreme conditions like that?!

3 Hours since application (indoors, sunlight)



After 3 hours, there was a bit of breakthrough shine on my skin, but nothing too notable. I couldn't detect any major differences between the formulas at this point.


4 Hours since application (artificial light)


After 4 hours, I took a look at my face under some artificial bathroom lighting. Examining my face head-on, things seemed to look pretty even, with no increase in shine since hour 3.

Looking at each side individually, however, I did notice a slight difference. The side of my face sporting Double Wear (my left, your right) was demonstrating some patchiness around the chin area (which I hope you can see in the photo below). The formula seemed to be clinging to some semi-dry patches on my chin, which made things look a bit cakey:

(After 4 hours): The Double Wear side of my face, betting a bit patchy around the chin

On the other hand, the ColourStay side of my face (my right, your left) had no evidence of caking or patchiness:

(After 4 hours): The ColourStay side of my face, no cakey or patchy bits

Overall, I was quite surprised to see there was a visible difference in the formulas after only 4 hours! Granted, the disparity could only be seen close-up, but it was definitely noticeable.


6 Hours since application (mix of natural and artificial lighting)

(After 6 hours): Revlon ColourStay on Left, Estee Lauder Double Wear on Right

Here I am, 6 hours after applying the foundations. As you can see, there is a noticeable amount of shine on my skin that wasn't evident a couple hours before. Again, I was quite busy and the weather was pretty warm that day. I also avoided any touch-ups, to be as scientific as possible.

There seemed to be a greater amount of shine on the Double Wear side of my face (my right, your left), as well as some additional patchiness around my nose and chin:

(After 6 hours): Double Wear side of my face, quite shiny with cakey patches around nose and chin

While the ColourStay side of my face showed signs of shine and wear, I couldn't see any evidence of things getting cakey or blotchy:

(After 6 hours): ColourStay side of my face, shiny, but not cakey or blotchy


9 Hours since application (natural light)

(After 9 hours): Revlon ColourStay on Left, Estee Lauder Double Wear on Right

My last set of photos were taken 9 hours after applying the foundations. As you can see, I'm quite shiny at this point (again, I didn't blot, powder, or touch-up at all during the day, for the sake of the experiment).

While there was a fair amount of oil breakthrough on both sides of my face, the Double Wear side was particularly shiny, blotchy, and patchy:

(After 9 hours): Double Wear side, shiny and patchy

On the other hand, despite the shine I think the ColourStay side held up rather well!

(After 9 hours): ColourStay side, shiny, but still quite even

Overall, I found this experiment super informative! Though, it was definitely difficult not to blot and powder throughout the day ;) While the differences between the formulas weren't dramatic, I was definitely disappointed in how Double Wear got quite patchy in areas, just a few hours after application! While it didn't completely disappear on me as other supposedly long-wearing foundations have, the blotchiness was a clear turn-off.

So, while I'm always a sucker for a grass-is-greener sentiment, this exercise really proved to me just how effective and lovely my Revlon ColourStay foundation really is! Because it performed so formidably here, it was my go-to choice on my sister's wedding day. Paired with Laura Mercier Oil-Free Foundation Primer, MAC Blot Powder, and Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray, my skin stayed matte and even throughout all of my Maid of Honour duties. One less thing to worry about during a busy day!

I hope you all found this post to be helpful! What are some of your favourite long-wear foundations? Have you ever tested foundations side-by-side?

Thanks for reading! xo

53 comments:

  1. This is such a great post! Interesting to see the difference... Thank you for this!

    If you haven't already, check out the M.A.C giveaway on my blog :) It's linked on every post :)

    www.beautybook13.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thanks, Becki! Glad you found it helpful. Will check out your giveaway soon :)

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  2. This is one of the most amazing blog posts i've ever seen.. I had been curious about the double wear foundation for a while and I'm happy you reviewed it so well.. No doubts i'll keep purchasing my revlon colorstay foundation forever !!

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    1. Aww, thanks so much! So glad you found it helpful. Revlon ColouStay is still the best I've tried for sure! xo

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  3. I have the Revlon ColourStay foundation and I've noticed how it gives you an even finish all day. Great post!

    www.lornasfabulousfashion.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thanks! Glad you're loving ColourStay too :)

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    2. I've always preferred the Revlon to Double wear, glad I'm not alone! X

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    3. I've always preferred the Revlon to Double wear, glad I'm not alone! X

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  4. I love the revlon colourstay foundation so much, really good post.
    Kirstennicctalksforbritian.Blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks! Glad you're loving it too; it's really my favourite :)

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  5. Very interesting post, I loved seeing how both of them match up. I haven't used Revlon ColorStay in year but I might give it another shot once the weather starts cooling down in the fall. I think it might be too heavy for the hot San Diego summer.

    Laura
    www.lauraneuzeth.com

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    1. Thanks, Laura! It's definitely worth a second shot; I find it surprisingly light-feeling on skin despite the good coverage and lasting power :)

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  6. this was such an awesome post! i always wonder if department store brands really *are* better than drugstore brands and in this case, they aren't! i knew it, haha. i also looove how matte and creamy the revlon looked on your face- and it really did cover up everything so perfectly! i currently have a foundation i absolutely hate (it does nothing, it's like peachy water), and have been wondering what would be a good but cheap option for me (seeing how i'm broke, haha). I'm favoriting this post so I can remember the brand when i go shopping!

    xo Marlen
    Messages on a Napkin

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    1. Aww, thanks, Marlen! I'm a sucker for high-end makeup, but ColourStay is really tops in my books. The formuala and coverage are great! Definitely worth checking out :)

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  7. great blog! love the information on here
    xx
    francesca

    http://www.frankvinyl.com

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    1. Thanks so much, Francesca! Glad you enjoyed it :)

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  8. What a great post, dear! Really informative, just what we need when deciding for foundations! Colour Stay it is then - next on my to-buy list for sure :).
    Thanks!

    xx
    http://gita-oddsandends.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks, Gita! Glad you found it helpful! Colourstay is worth checking out for sure :)

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  9. Lovely, I am always looking for a brand that does not clog up my pores. However I love the fact that this last all day without getting oily

    http://www.BlackandOlives.com/

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    1. Thanks! I have oily skin and I don't find that this clogs or breaks out my skin at all. The lasting can't be beat! xo

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  10. Absolutely brilliant review. Love it.


    Edita
    www.pret-a-reporter.co.uk

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  11. This is such an interesting post, I think it just goes to show that more expensive doesn't always mean better. I nearly bought Double wear a while ago and I'm glad I didn't as I love Revlon Colourstay and it's a much cheaper option :)
    Rosalie x
    RosalieJayne.

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    1. Thanks, Rosalie! Glad you liked it! I'm a sucker for high-end makeup, but ColourStay really is the best I've tried :)

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  12. This is actually an amazing post!! I've never seen such a scientific and accurate foundation comparison before - love it, and I don't even wear foundation haha!

    Holly Mixtures
    xx

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    1. Aww, thanks, Holly! Glad you found it so helpful :)

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  13. Gorgeous Lady

    My Blog here www.IslandChic77.com

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  14. Oh my gosh, I used Revlon Colourstay years ago and loved it but had been so enticed over to the high end brands that I'd completely forgotten about it - going to definitely do some investigating! Also love the blush colour you have on <3

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    1. Thanks! I've tried so many high-end foundations, but I always come back to to Colourstay. Can't be beat in my opinion! xo

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  15. I've had them both, and my vote goes to Estee Lauder :-)

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    1. Glad Double Wear worked well for you! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  16. The staying power on these are amazing! Thanks so much for an in-depth review! I wish they did lighter coverage foundations with such long lasting effects though!!
    - Ceema xoxo
    ceemab.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Yes, it was definitely impressive! Glad you found the review helpful! I find that even though ColourStay can give full coverage, it can be applied lightly or mixed with moisturizer for a lighter finish :)

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  17. double wear is very dry! But I don't like the smell of the color stay :(

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    1. Ah, the scent has never bothered me, but I can definitely see that it could be irritating. Hope you find a foundation that you really like! xo

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  18. Thank you for the awesome review. It's crazy that drugstore products can out-perform high-end brands. I've been using Revlon's Nearly Naked foundation lately and I'm really impressed. Do you know if there's a big difference between the ColorStay for dry skin vs. oily?

    Jillicious Cosmetics

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  19. This is the first time I can see such a great blog! The comparison is amazing!You did a great job!Take care:)

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  20. Fab blog. Used Colourstay for many years then changed to double wear fresco 2n2. Loved Estes Lauder and the price was never an issue if the product is worth it, but they have changed the formula and fresco 2n2 has now become fresco 2c3 but is a completely different colour and is runny. I have started to get clogged pores on my nose. Sooo disappointed. Looks like a visit back to Revlon.

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  21. This was awesome. I really want to try the Revlon one now.

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  22. Wow! Thank you so much for this review, I was looking for a realistic and unbiased look at Double wear after hearing so many differing reviews!
    I have exactly the same skin as you and this has been sososososososooooo helpful!!
    Thank you again, I will definitely be investing in revlon colour stay, I hope your sister had a great wedding too :))

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  23. This is SO helpful! I own Double Wear and I love it but we are the same colour in foundation so I think I'll be getting colour stay too!

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  24. I don't think this experiment is enough to reach your conclusion. You performed the experiment only once, and there could be many possible factors as to why one side of your face looked different than the other, besides the differing foundations. It would be interesting to see you repeat this experiment under the exact same conditions but with the foundations applied to opposite sides (switch whichever was on the left to right and vice versa).

    To those choosing between the two, I personally have normal/dry skin and prefer the DW. I wear my foundation for ~9 hours every day. I used the Colorstay (both oily/combination and normal/dry formulas) for a few years but I was never happy with how it held up, especially in warmer weathers. It would go into my fine lines, appear patchy, and emphasize my dry patches. With the DW, I notice some fading at the end of the day in some areas (sides of my nose, chin) but that's the only "problem" I have with it. The consistency is perfect and gives my skin a nice finish.

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  25. I think you should have tried them on without powder and primer as it might react with the foundation in different ways.

    You know best, but actually think DW looks best in the picture at the end. :)

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  26. Thank you SO much for posting this. I have been wondering if it was worth a switch to try out the Esthee Lauder (I, too, have been using Revlon Colorstay for years). I was so excited to stumble upon this review and I found it very helpful. I'm also going to try this primer you speak of.

    :)

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  27. Thank you very much for this. I've been using Double Wear for a while, but recently they have changed the colours and formula - it's now thinner and doesn't wear so well. I've been wondering what to change to, but due to your post I'm going to give Revlon Colourstay a try.

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  28. Hi,
    I stumbled on your page when I was looking for a drugstore dupe for Estée Lauder Double Wear as they have a bonus gift right now. I will stick with my Colorstay. I experienced a similar thing but I'm always tempted by the bonus gift for some reason ;-( What do you use to apply your foundation? It looks so amazing- natural but in a perfectly polished way. Thanks!

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  29. That image wouldn't take 'hours in photoshop' to fix it would literally take a minute..

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    1. Thank you for this . I use colorstay for oily skin and have just got a sample today for the double wear . I will see how i go with the sample as I have to consider not just the staying power but also the finish and how it covers as I have mature skin and therefore have other problems to cover 😊

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All of your lovely comments make my day! Thanks for taking the time to share your musings, ideas, and opinions. Feel free to leave a link to your blog- I'd be happy to check it out :)