My Rant Against Tinted Moisturiser

Let me just start off by saying: I do not understand tinted moisturiser.

Let’s break it down.  Tinted moisturiser is like a mix between foundation and, well, moisturiser.  The purpose of foundation is to even out skintone and provide a good base for the rest of your makeup.  Moisturiser can serve a variety of purposes, from plumping skin to controlling oil.

Foundation primarily comes in three “types”: full-, medium-, and light-coverage.  Full often contains more than 35% pigment; medium has 20%-35%, and light has anywhere less than 20% (these numbers vary slightly depending on who you ask).  Now, when people ask me, I recommend medium- or full-coverage 90% of the time.  Why?  Because you can always sheer out fuller coverage foundations and make them the equivalent of lower-coverage kind, while it is incredibly difficult to effectively layer a sheerer foundation up to a higher level of coverage and still look natural. Thus, full coverage is the most versatile.  My makeup kit contains mostly full coverage foundations, even though very few of my clients actually require this much.

Full coverage foundation provides, as it sounds, complete coverage.  This type, undiluted, can cover blemishes, birthmarks, redness, and nearly any other type of imperfection on its own (only occasionally requiring a layer of concealer underneath).  Medium coverage can cover most types of acne, redness, and blotchiness on its own, but will require concealer to completely disguise port-wine stains, severe acne, under-eye circles, and beauty marks.  Light coverage is used mostly to just even out already good skin, minimizing redness and toning down freckles and the like, but is not effective at disguising anything darker than that.

So… Tinted moisturiser.  This stuff contains usually less than 10% pigment, and I really do not understand its purpose.  The point of people using foundation is to even out skintone or disguise something.  But looking at light-coverage foundation, which can barely disguise more than some red cheeks or a speckled complexion, what is something with at least 10% less pigment going to be able to do?  I have never come across a tinted moisturiser than has any visible effect.  You’d need to have near-perfect skin for this stuff to be able to do anything, and then, if your skin is that good, why are you wearing “foundation” in the first place?

Some people wear it because they feel obligated to wear some sort of base beneath the rest of their makeup (and I agree), but don’t want to feel like they’re wearing a total mask of foundation.  C’mon people, this isn’t the twenties any more.  Even full-coverage foundations can be sheered down to almost nothing with a damp application tool, and are much lighter than their counterparts from decades ago.

So.  Ditch the tinted moisturiser, grab a good medium-to-full-coverage foundation and a nice, light moisturiser, dampen your sponge, and get to it!

What are your thoughts?  Do any of you wear tinted moisturiser and love it?  Let me know in the comments (maybe you’ll create a convert out of this boy!)

  1. #1 by ana on July 8, 2011 - 15:02

    Maybe it’s the slightly lazy girl in me, but once in a while I use tinted moisturizer for its multi-tasking benefits…it evens out my tone just enough while moisturizing and protecting with SPF…perfect for those days I’m feeling like going with a much more natural look.

  2. #2 by Shea on July 10, 2011 - 00:51

    Reason I use mine is that it’s SPF 30. I’ve got pretty good skin, nothing too bad, hoping to keep it that way, but I burn easily. So the moisturizer gets a daily use for me. I’m also pretty lazy so that’s usually the only thing I do. At least it’s getting some protection.

  3. #3 by Mizuki on July 21, 2011 - 17:41

    Laziness might be my reason as well. Of course, I agree with you completely about coverage, and yes, full coverage will always be helpful on certain days, but most mornings when I’m rushing to class, I don’t want to take the effort to find the right ratio of foundation to moisturizer when I don’t want full coverage.Tinted moisturizer is great for the “no-makeup” makeup look..Also, as I am very new to makeup, it’s an easy transition for me; TM can be applied without a brush, and eliminates the need for an extra step of moisturizer then foundation.

  4. #4 by Anonymous on August 21, 2011 - 04:50

    I use a Neutrogena TM (Healthy Skin, I think it is?) that has some retinol, SPF, and moisturizer rolled into one, and it helps my skin rebound from anything (pimple, sunburn, scar) much faster, which is why I have a love affair with my TM. I don’t use it for coverage, it’s simply what I use when I’m not wearing my usual foundation. Really more of a skin treatment for me I suppose…reading your post cracked me up, I don’t get it either, really, unless you have nearly perfect skin (lucky bitch), in which case, flaunt it with just a moisturizer with SPF….duh!

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