The best Charlotte Tilbury foundation for coverage is the Airbrush Flawless Foundation. It’s the thickest foundation in the Charlotte Tilbury range and a single layer is enough to cover redness, capillaries, and blemishes and it creates an all-around even base. Once it’s dried, very little shifts this foundation from the skin and it lasts all day.
The best Charlotte Tilbury foundation for mature skin is Light Wonder. It goes on effortlessly, blends like a dream, and looks exactly like skin. Thanks to its lightweight texture, the Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder foundation doesn’t settle in fine lines around your eyes or mouth, nor does it accentuate wrinkles.
The best Charlotte Tilbury foundation for dull, and/or dry skin is the Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin foundation. It’s the latest addition to the range and it not only provides coverage, but it helps improve the appearance of your skin over time. In particular, it helps make the skin look plumper and hydrated while helping tackle dryness and dullness. It even helps reduce the appearance of dark circles, dark spots, and pigmentation.
The best Charlotte Tilbury foundation for glowing skin is the Hollywood Flawless Filter. We like to wear this in between our primer and our foundation. It helps even out the skin, adds a dewy, glowy finish, and makes our complexion looker smoother. You can also use this on top of your foundation as a subtle highlighter, or even on its own.
|Best for coverage: Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Filter||£34|
|Best for mature skin: Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder||£34|
|Best for dull/dry skin: Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin||£34|
|Best for glowing skin: Hollywood Flawless Filter||From £13|
We’ve divided the best Charlotte Tilbury foundations into skin type and coverage needs to help you find your ideal match
Charlotte Tilbury has been on a roll in recent months (and years) with a long line of new product releases across various categories. Yet, until January, one product range had been somewhat neglected – the Charlotte Tilbury foundation collection.
That all changed with the launch of Beautiful Skin. Inspired by a number of the recent launches and breakthroughs made by Charlotte Tilbury’s skincare experts, this medium-coverage foundation promises to leave skin looking “hydrated, plumper, smoother, and brighter” and it comes with “long-term skincare benefits.”
With this new launch and extended range, we thought it would be a good time to put each of them to the test to finally determine which is the best Charlotte Tilbury foundation for different needs.
FURTHER READING: How to get free Charlotte Tilbury foundation samples
Upon the launch of Beautiful Skin, it took the total number of Charlotte Tilbury foundations to five. Three standard foundations, one foundation that has been discontinued (but is still available while stocks last) and a so-called glow booster. These include:
You can additionally buy a hydrating skin tint, called the Unisex Healthy Glow. It’s slightly lighter than a lot of tinted moisturisers we’ve tried but is good for helping to create an even, natural-looking base.
Unlike MAC foundations, which are universal across the board, Charlotte Tilbury foundation shades vary depending on the foundation in question.
For example, the Hollywood Flawless Filter and Light Wonder products come in 12 shades that range from 1. Fair up to 8. Deep
The Beautiful Skin and Airbrush Flawless Filter foundations are numbered from 1 to 17 in the case of Beautiful Skin and 1 to 16 for the Airbrush Flawless.
However, this time they’re additionally labelled based on your skin’s undertone – cool, warm or neutral.
For instance, if you have light skin with a warm undertone, you’ll be a 2 Warm. Sadly though, the shades don’t line up exactly across the two brands.
There isn’t a 2 Neutral in the Beautiful Skin range, for instance, but there is in the Airbrush Flawless line.
This is just one example so don’t assume that if you know your Charlotte Tilbury foundation shades in one product that it will automatically translate in the other.
However, Charlotte Tilbury has created a Complexion Matrix that helps you match a shade in one product to a shade in another.
The chart for Medium Skin Tones is below to show you an example, but you can see the matrix for light, tan and deep tones here.
For each foundation, we tested how well it went on and how well it lasted using the Milk Hydro Grip Primer. We also applied each using a foundation brush, and a damp beauty blender to see which gave the best finish.
We didn’t use any setting powders or sprays so we can get a true reflection of how each of the best Charlotte Tilbury foundations looked on our skin, and how well each one lasted.
None of these Charlotte Tilbury foundations were gifted. We bought them all from using our own money. These are honest, real-world results and the photos have not been edited in any way.
Shade: 1 Neutral | Coverage: Full | Price: £34 | Buy now
The Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Foundation is the thickest foundation in the Charlotte Tilbury range and this has its pros and its cons.
On the plus side, it is the only foundation in the Charlotte Tilbury range that offers anything close to full coverage.
A single layer of this foundation is enough to cover redness, capillaries, and blemishes and create an all-around even base. Once it’s dried, very little shifts this foundation from the skin and it lasts all day. Even on our oily areas.
The downsides are that it feels heavy, and dries down quickly. It takes a fair amount of blending to remove the texture, and you have to be quick to stop it from setting in place. This makes it a bit of a nightmare for dry skin.
From a distance, this Charlotte Tilbury foundation makes our skin look as the product promises – airbrushed and flawless. Yet up close, it has a tendency to settle in our enlarged pores, looks cakey in places and does our wrinkles and fine lines no favours.
Application-wise, the Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless foundation goes on better with a damp beauty blender. The brush had a tendency to just move the product around rather than blend it into the skin.
Read our full Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless foundation review
Shade: 1.5 Fair | Coverage: Low-Medium | Price: £34 | Buy now
UPDATE: Before we dive into our Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder review, we’re hearing rumours that it has been discontinued. At the time of writing, it’s only available in three shades – Light, 9 Deep and 10 Deep – on the Charlotte Tilbury website and this stock situation has been shrinking by the week. Similarly, certain shades are running low on third-party sites.
It’s likely that, given the skincare benefits of the Beautiful Skin foundation, the Light Wonder is a little too similar so is being taken off the shelves. This is a real shame as we love the Light Wonder foundation and if you do too, you might have to be quick.
We’re keeping the below review until we get confirmation.
At the opposite end of the scale to the Airbrush Flawless foundation in terms of texture, finish and coverage is the Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder. This is the best Charlotte Tilbury foundation in our opinion because it ticks so many boxes.
Firstly, it goes on effortlessly whether you’re using a beauty blender, a brush, or your fingers. It blends like a dream and looks exactly like skin. It balances skin tone without making it look flat or dull, and it creates a natural, youthful finish without adding too much glow or shine. It also feels so light that you don’t even realise you’re wearing any foundation at all. World’s apart from the thick Airbrush Flawless.
Thanks to this lightweight texture, the Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder foundation doesn’t settle in fine lines around your eyes or mouth, nor does it accentuate wrinkles. And this finish lasted for hours.
By the end of the day, the redness on our nose was starting to peak through and it had started melting a little around our oily areas, but overall it still looked great. The slippage was nothing that a bit of powder or even a tissue wouldn’t resolve.
This foundation provides low-to-medium coverage. This may not suit all skin types and preferences. This foundation is buildable if you want or need to create better coverage overall, or in certain areas, but that will of course take more time and use more product.
Shade: 6 Neutral* | Coverage: Medium | Price: £34 | Buy now
The Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin foundation is the latest addition to the range and it’s packed with benefits and ingredients. Following the rising trend of skincare-makeup, this foundation not only provides coverage but it helps improve the appearance of your skin over time.
In particular, it helps make the skin look plumper and hydrated while helping tackle dryness and dullness. It even helps reduce the appearance of dark circles, dark spots and pigmentation.
This is thanks to ingredients including:
Consistency-wise, Beautiful Skin sits between the Airbrush Flawless and Light Wonder foundations and this means it’s easy and quick to apply and blend while offering medium coverage. *Note: The Charlotte Tilbury Shade Finder recommended we buy this foundation in 6 Neutral but it dries down darker than expected so we recommend you opt for a shade that looks lighter than you need.
On our oily/combination skin, this foundation had a tendency to slide off by the end of the day. However, friends of ours with dry skin who have tried this foundation have loved it. So much so, it has replaced their go-to brands.
In order to see the longer-term effects of this foundation, you do have to wear this foundation daily for weeks. We tried for two weeks and did see a marginal improvement in dullness and our dark circles. The foundation also looks and lasts much longer when used with setting powders and setting sprays, but we quickly returned to our Light Wonder bottle!
Shade: 3 Fair | Coverage: Sheer | Price: £34 | Buy now
Charlotte Tilbury makes no bones about the fact that this isn’t a traditional foundation. She calls it a “glow booster” and as such, it has more versatility than regular foundations. We like to wear this in between our primer and our foundation. It helps even out the skin, adds a dewy, glowy finish and makes our complexion looker smoother.
You can also use this on top of your foundation as a subtle highlighter, or even on its own. We imagine this would give a great look to freshly-tanned skin or when on holiday. It offers sheer coverage, which isn’t enough for us to use on its own because of our various areas of redness, pigmentation and oil. Yet when combined with other products, it’s an absolute must-have.
We love how it lifts our complexion, even when we apply products on top, and it gives it a youthful appearance. If you don’t want to stretch to £34, you can buy miniature versions of the Hollywood Flawless Filter for £13. These mini bottles only come in four shades, however, while the full-sized versions are available in 12.
The Charlotte Tilbury Foundation Match tool recommended 3 Fair but it was a little too dark (as you can see above).
Victoria is founder and editor-in-chief of mamabella, freelance journalist and Mum. She has a passion for empowering people to feel beautiful whatever their age, size, skin type and budget