It's 2019, and beauty brands are continuing to jump on the hopefully-not-just-a-trend of launching massive foundation ranges. One of January's buzziest drops is Morphe's new Fluidity foundation line, which includes a whopping 60 shades, making it one of the largest ranges on the market. However, makeup fans are pretty much in agreement that it's not enough for a brand to just launch a lot of foundation — it has to be really well done, too. Even with 60 options, the Fluidity line has sparked criticism, ranging from a claim that the darker shades have red undertones to questions about Morphe's perceived lack of representation and inclusivity in its social media presence.
Morphe representatives responded to criticism in a statement to Bustle, noting that each Fluidity shade was matched on real people, and that the range was created with "all skin tones, undertones, and genders" in mind. "Fluidity was created...with an inclusive and democratic range of 60 shades evenly distributed across five shade levels. We have a spectrum of multi-dimensional, diverse shades with cool, warm, and olive undertones represented equally in each shade level...We have unique shades that represent serial mixers and underserved undertones out there, and we truly believe this is a makeup that makes up for lack of options."
Controversy or not, ultimately foundation is a personal preference. And with both positive and negative feedback prominently coming from YouTubers and beauty bloggers who often have affiliate partnerships with the brand being reviewed or a rival company, the best way to figure out whether a range is good, bad, or somewhere in between is to get your own hands on a sample.
So that's what we did. Morphe sent the fashion and beauty editors at Bustle the full range of the collection, and after a little trial and error, seven of us chose the best shades for our respective skin tones. The collection includes the 60 shades, which are divided into five groups: Level 1 - Light, Level 2 - Medium, Level 3 - Tan, Level 4 - Rich, and Level 5 - Deep. As the press release explains, each shade in the collection is also distinguished by one of four undertones (cool, neutral, olive, and warm).
It took a little bit of playing around for each of us to find our shades, so as an initial note I suggest trying anywhere from three to five samples from Morphe to shade match effectively.
Olivia — F1.60
First up, my thoughts. This is full, full, full coverage foundation. I would never wear this on a daily basis just because it is so matte (and I prefer a more dewy feel for my everyday makeup), but paired with a full face of shadow, lashes, etc. this foundation was perfect. I wore it all night at a wedding (hence, the full glam look) and it did not budge, get shiny, or transfer. It's worth mentioning that I think this foundation look slightly better in photos than it does in real life, but I it still looks good in either setting. This is definitely my new go-to full face, full glam foundation.
Kara — F1.90
"This foundation is very matte — probably one of the most matte I've ever tried. My skin is pretty dry, so I typically go for a formula that has a more dewy finish. Even though those types will probably still be my go-tos moving forward, I did really love how this foundation looked in photos after I had put the rest of my makeup on!"
Katie Dupere — F2.20
"This foundation was super matte, which I actually love in my foundations when doing a full face beat. While blending took a bit because of the matte formula, the result was absolutely worth it — especially on camera. In fact, I don't think I've come across a camera-ready foundation that compares to this one. It gives you the ultimate blurring effect. I will definitely use this foundation again, especially when I know I'm going to be taking a lot of Insta photos."
Sara — F2.50
"I typically wear lighter, more hydrating foundations with a dewy finish, so I was a little hesitant to put this matte foundation on my face, especially because when I swatched it on my hand, it felt super dry. But after applying a light layer of Morphe's Fluidity foundation with a brush, I was pleasantly surprised. It didn't feel as dry as I thought it would be, but it definitely had a matte finish in all the right places. I was shocked when I photographed myself with the foundation on because it made my skin look super glowy and near flawless. It's definitely a formula to wear when you're going out and know there will be lots of selfies being taken."
Amanda — F2.70
"I'll be upfront that I tend to use BB cream/cushion compacts for my foundation regimen, as I've found these products are best for my dry skin. (Plus, I prefer a dewier look.) So while I wouldn't normally gravitate toward a liquid matte foundation like this new release from Morphe, I will say that it applied really nicely — I didn't think my skin looked overly dry afterward, or like the foundation was caked on my face — and that it did a good job of even-ing out the red areas on my face."
Kayla — F3.20
"I liked the foundation. It is very, very, very matte, which can be quite drying, so I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for all day, everyday use — but it looks amazing in photos since it's SUPER full coverage. The formula is lightweight and can be applied easily with a brush, beauty blender, or your fingers. I noticed minimal creasing, only really around my nose."
Gabby — F4.80
"This is definitely a full coverage foundation. I looked filtered, which I don’t hate. It also goes on super matte and I love that because I tend to get very shiny."
Not about a matte foundation or full coverage? This line probably isn't for you. But if you take a lot of selfies, always need to be camera-ready, or love a good oil-combatting formula, Fluidity may be your new best friend. And if you end up loving it (or want to try something different), the line also includes concealer and powder (for $9 and $12, respectively), which seem to be good companions to the $18 foundation. The full line goes on sale online at Morphe.com and in Morphe stores on Jan. 17, and will be available in Ulta on Jan. 20.