Foundation creates a beautiful canvas for makeup application, but many formulas can be time consuming to apply. It needs to be blended evenly without streaking, and for those of us with combination or oily skin, it has to be set with powder so it doesn’t move throughout the day. Powder foundation, on the other hand, is easy to apply and also combines steps. It provides coverage and since it’s powder, no additional setting powder is needed. I think powder foundations are underappreciated in the makeup world and are really excellent time-savers for anyone looking to simplify their makeup routine.
Before I found out that IT Cosmetics is owned by L’Oréal, I used their powder Celebration Foundation. For a long time, I searched for a 100% cruelty-free alternative with a shade that would work for me, and I finally found one! I’ve been using Clove + Hallow Pressed Mineral Foundation for about a month and I like it just as well if not better than the IT Cosmetics powder foundation.
Unfamiliar with Clove + Hallow? So was I, until just a few months ago. Clove + Hallow is an indie beauty brand that offers makeup, brushes, and skincare. All Clove + Hallow products are vegan, cruelty-free, and clean. The company prides itself most on its Clean15 philosophy, which means all products are formulated with 15 or fewer ingredients. Clove + Hallow formulates products with both natural and synthetic ingredients for the ultimate safety and effectiveness.
Clove + Hallow Pressed Mineral Foundation claims directly from CloveandHallow.com
Clean beauty game-changer! With medium-buildable full coverage, Pressed Mineral Foundation is your new complexion BFF. Made from a base of talc-free powders and minerals plus a natural antioxidant complex to cover imperfections with a satin finish that looks like real, radiant skin. Pressed into an eco-chic refillable pan (compact must be bought separately), you get all the benefits of mineral makeup without the mess of a loose powder. Layer lightly for sheer coverage or build up with a dense brush for a full-coverage effect – whatever look you’re going for, Pressed Mineral Foundation can get you there!
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Other product details
- Price of Pressed Mineral Foundation: $24.00
- Price of Refillable Compact: $8.00
- Net weight: 0.31 oz. | 9 g
- Made in the USA
- 14 shades
- Indie Beauty Expo Best in Show: Best Overall Color Cosmetic 2017
- Free of parabens, petrochemicals, mineral oil, talc, and synthetic fragrance
- Contains mica that is ethically-sourced from the USA
- Shelf life: 24 months
- Where to buy: CloveandHallow.com and Amazon.com
- CloveandHallow.com ships internationally.
- Amazon.com ships internationally to over 100 countries, but not all items will ship to every country. Update your default shipping address to see items that will ship to your location.
- Overall rating: 8.8/10
- Inclusivity: 7/10
- Packaging/ease of application: 10/10
- Ingredients: 10/10
- Staying power: 9/10
- Price: 8/10
Please note that I am not a makeup artist. The opinions expressed in this review are my own, as a regular person that loves makeup.
Clean beauty brands have a bad reputation for having small shade ranges. It’s probably because many of them are indie brands, and therefore they may not have the resources available to produce more inclusive shade ranges. There are currently only 14 shades available in Clove + Hallow’s Pressed Mineral Foundation. Honestly, it’s not the worst shade range I’ve ever seen, and it’s not bad for a small brand. For that reason, I only knocked a few points off for inclusivity.
I looked at each of the shades in this range, as well as swatches. I found that the shades are distributed as follows, when going by shade descriptions:
- Ultra fair: 1
- Fair: 1
- Light: 2
- Light-Medium: 2
- Medium-Dark: 3
- Dark: 2
- Deep: 3
I think this range would be really good if more undertones were added. For example, I have this foundation in the only fair shade, shade 2, which is “fair with golden undertones.” I have fair skin, but my undertone is neutral, so this shade appears a little too yellow on my skin. It works well enough, but it would be nice to have a more accurate shade match. Moving into the two light shades, there are only neutral and pink undertone options (no golden/warm option). Then looking at the dark and deep shades, there are none with pink/cool undertones. This is unfortunate, but again, Clove + Hallow may be unable to add more shades at this time.
Packaging/ease of application
This pressed mineral foundation is packaged in a refill pan instead of a traditional compact. If you don’t have a customizable palette (like a Z Palette), don’t worry because Clove + Hallow has you covered! There is a magnetic refillable compact sold separately for $8.00. It’s compatible with both this powder foundation and Clove + Hallow’s Bronzing Powder. Some people might not like this concept, but I think it’s brilliant! As long as the compact is being reused, it prevents a lot of waste.
The refillable compact is very well made. It includes a mirror and the magnet is strong enough to hold the pan in place securely. The lid snaps closed and is also very secure, without being difficult to open. I really like the quality of this compact, as well as the beautiful design!
The foundation itself is very easy to use. It’s not too densely packed or too powdery, so it’s easy to dip a brush in and pick up enough product without getting too much. My favorite brush to use with this powder foundation is the e.l.f. Ultimate Blending Brush, which is pictured above and featured in another recent post, Vegan Cruelty-Free Makeup Brushes Part 1–Complexion Brushes.
Once I pick up the product on my brush, I stamp it onto my skin to maximize coverage. I sometimes buff it on too, but I like the level of coverage that I get when stamping it on instead of buffing. While I am happy with the level of coverage this foundation provides, I disagree with the claim that it has medium-buildable full coverage. I would say that this is a light-medium coverage product. I get medium coverage when I use the brush and application method mentioned above.
This powder foundation could alternatively be used as a setting powder, both to set foundation and also add a little extra coverage. I’ve only used it that way once, and applied it with a large fluffy brush. I think it worked well for the purpose of setting my foundation, but I prefer to wear it as a standalone foundation.
I don’t usually review the ingredients for foundations, but since Clove + Hallow puts so much emphasis on its clean formulas with short ingredient lists, I was curious to see which ingredients they would choose to use for this product. I also wanted to know what sort of extra benefits to the skin the ingredients provide, if any. Please note that the ingredient list shown on CloveandHallow.com does not exactly match the ingredient list on the packaging. I contacted Clove + Hallow about the discrepancies I found and was informed that they simplified the ingredient list online to make it easier for consumers to read (i.e. Tocopherol is listed as Vitamin E). The ingredient list below is from the product packaging:
Mica, Silica, Boron Nitride, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Magnesium Stearate, Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Gluconolactone, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Lauroyl Lysine, Sodium Benzoate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Tocopherol
May contain: Titanium Dioxide Ci 77891, Zinc Oxide Ci 77947, Iron Oxide Ci 77492, Iron Oxide 77491, Iron Oxide 77499
This foundation contains a mix of neutral ingredients and also a surprising number of ingredients that are very beneficial to the skin. Since there are only 14 primary ingredients (not counting the “may contain” ingredients which are colorants), I’ll provide brief descriptions for each of them:
- Gives a shimmery look to the skin
- Natural mineral mattifier
- Boron Nitride
- Texture enhancer
- Diffuses light
- Improves color pay-off
- Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (a.k.a. fractionated coconut oil)
- Emollient that makes skin feel smooth
- Magnesium Stearate
- Texture enhancer
- Binding agent that allows powder to grip the skin
- Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil
- Moisturizes skin and makes it feel soft
- Butyloctyl Salicylate (a derivative of salicylic acid)
- Emollient that provides powder spreadability
- PHA (mild chemical exfoliant) that is safe for very sensitive skin
- Provides long-term anti-aging benefits like reducing wrinkles and increasing skin thickness
- Acts as a preservative in this product
- Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract
- Conditions and softens skin
- Rich source of antioxidants
- Lauroyl Lysine
- Texture enhancer derived from amino acids
- Sodium Benzoate
- Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Extract
- Moisturizing and soothing
- Contains antioxidants
- Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract
- Contains rosmarinic acid, a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
- Strengthens skin barrier
This list starts out with several ingredients that look typical for a powder foundation, but the bottom half of the list is full of skin-loving ingredients! I am an advocate for the importance of good skincare products to keep skin looking healthy and youthful, but makeup products like this provide a little extra “oomph” or “cherry on top” to help skin look its best. I am truly surprised that Clove + Hallow was able to fit so many great ingredients into this product with such a short ingredient list.
The colorants listed below the primary ingredient list are all naturally derived. They each scored a “2” or “3” in the EWG (Environmental Working Group) Skin Deep database which means they are safe.
I am absolutely thrilled with the ingredients that Clove + Hallow used to formulate this foundation! Easy 10/10!!
The staying power of this foundation is excellent! It doesn’t “crack” like a lot of liquid foundations do, nor does it sink into fine lines very much. I did an eight hour wear test yesterday. I found that after four hours, some of my natural oils had started to come through, but the foundation still looked really good. None of it had rubbed off or broken down and the areas that often give me problems with foundations (forehead, between my eyebrows, and smile lines) still looked great! At the eight hour mark, some areas started to look dry and powdery, but this is a powder foundation so it’s not surprising. The foundation on my chin had also started to break down, but I think that’s happened with every foundation I’ve ever tried. Other than those two things, my foundation still looked really nice at the end of the day. 🙂
One thing I really like about powder foundation is that it’s very easy to touch-up. If some of it gets rubbed off or starts to break down, you can just apply more on top and it looks great! If it looks a little powdery or cakey after touch-ups, you can always use a hydrating spray like Pacifica Coconut Essence Hydro Mist to make the foundation “melt” into the skin and look more natural.
Most of the foundations in my collection are from drugstore brands, so for me $24.00 is a little pricey. However, $24.00 is actually a lot less expensive than foundations from luxury brands. Clove + Hallow falls somewhere in the middle between drugstore and high-end pricing. While I wish this foundation was less expensive, I understand why it is $24.00. It probably took a lot of work to formulate this foundation just right. The ingredients are fantastic and the foundation performs beautifully, while wearing well all day long. I don’t mind paying a little bit more for a foundation that works so well and is actually good for my skin. 🙂
I am so happy that I found this clean beauty gem! Clove + Hallow Pressed Mineral Foundation is definitely a new favorite in my foundation collection and I look forward to using it more. It provides the perfect amount of coverage with the most beautiful natural looking finish. I definitely plan to repurchase another pan of this foundation once I’ve used up this one.
Powder foundations aren’t for everyone. They’re often avoided by those with dry or mature skin because some can make skin look more dry and emphasize texture. I have combination skin with minimal texture so I don’t have problems with powder products, but I think this foundation may be a good choice for people that don’t usually like powder foundations. I say that because this product contains moisturizing ingredients. Moisture isn’t something that’s usually associated with powders, but Clove + Hallow found a way to make a long-lasting powder foundation that actually hydrates the skin. If you can find a shade that works for your skin tone, this foundation is definitely worth trying!
Do you enjoy the simplicity of powder foundations? Which one is your favorite? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!