When it comes to makeup, there are very few brands that do it better than MAC in my opinion. For years, my go-to foundation was Studio Fix Fluid foundation, very closely followed by Studio Fix powder. Both of these are full coverage finishes, and it’s only in the past few years that I have begun moving away from full coverage, to much lighter, dewy foundations.
As you get older your skin changes, and now I rarely wear a full coverage foundation unless I’m going on a big night out. I’ve grown to much prefer the feel and look of a lighter foundation, and that’s where Next To Nothing comes in.
I had read a little bit about this foundation in the Spring just after it was released, but it was only when I was in MAC back in June that I decided to swatch it and see what all the hype was about.
When talking to the makeup artist in store, she explained to me that this was MAC’s answer to Armani’s Luminous Silk and honestly, that was a very bold claim to make. As far as high-end foundations go, Luminous Silk has been my go-to since I discovered it around 18 months ago. It gives my face a perfect creamy coverage that smooths out my skin while also giving it an incredible glow (if you missed my review earlier this year you catch catch it here).
Given how much I love Luminous Silk, naturally I was intrigued to see if Next to Nothing lived up to its claims so I bought it, and have been putting it to the test over the past few months. Here’s how I’ve been getting on…
First off, Next to Nothing is extremely light weight, and MAC describe it as more of a tinted cream than foundation. The formula is quite wet, much wetter than you’d expect, and because of that, it blends very quickly into the skin.
As far as consistency goes, I’m not sure how much I like it. I like that it is very easy to apply, and I like that a little goes a long way. However, the wetness means you have to be careful how you apply it. In general, I prefer stippling brushes to apply liquid foundation (MAC 191 is my favourite), but that doesn’t work well at all with this foundation. When I applied it with my stippling brush, it kind of dragged the formula rather than blended it, so a flat foundation brush or a beauty blender/sponge are your only real options for an even coverage.
Speaking of coverage, it is so light that it gives a ‘barely there’ look to the skin yet still manages to blur out skin imperfections. It gives a lovely smoothness to my skin which also softens it, so from that point of view, it is very nice. It is comfortable to wear, doesn’t feel heavy or thick in any way, and has a lovely hydrating element to it too which I wasn’t expecting.
I think maybe the thing I like about it most (and this is where it is similar to Luminous Silk), is the lovely sheer glow it gives to my skin. My skin is combination to dry, more dry than anything else, and because of that, has a tendency to look dull at times. I think that’s mainly why I’m so drawn to dewy foundations now, and this definitely brings a lovely soft glow to my face.
But, and there is a but with it; don’t be expecting a flawless finish. I have some red lines and broken capillaries around my nose area which it doesn’t cover very well, and due to pregnancy hormones my chin has been very dry and sandpaper-like over the past few months, which means I need a good amount of concealer when I use it. It doesn’t have the same creaminess that Luminous Silk has, and the coverage is maybe just a little too light, even for me.
One thing that struck me when I was researching the foundation was, that as well as using this as your stand alone base, MAC also suggest using it over your current foundation to give an extra glow to the skin – that just completely baffled me. I’m not sure why you should ever need to use a foundation, over your foundation?! That’s what primers and highlighters are for…
Also, when this was first released it was hailed as an ‘Instagram filter in a bottle’ because of its retouching quality and the sheer glow it gives the skin. While I’m sure that was just part of the marketing plan, I’m not sure I get that claim either.
So how do I feel about it now? Well, I like it but I don’t love it. On a warm Summer’s day, or a day when you just want a light tint to the skin, it is the perfect option. It will give you a lovely glow and keep your skin soft and smooth. So, if you tend to prefer light foundations, then I would definitely recommend getting a sample in store to try it out.
But, if you want something a little creamier, longer lasting or have blemishes you want to cover, it’s not the best choice. And, although it has an oil-free formula, it probably isn’t going to work for you if you have oily skin either.
I am wearing shade Light Plus, which is maybe a little too light for my skin tone, but the next shade up, Medium, was too dark. There isn’t a great shade range with there being only nine in total, but because it is so light and blendable, it is easy enough to work around that.
I think it will be great for when bump arrives and I don’t have the time to apply a full face of makeup every day, so I’m definitely going to keep wearing it for light coverage days. But overall I think this one is going to be a love or hate kind of product – the only question is, do you love it or hate it?!
If you’ve tried this foundation I’d love to hear your thoughts on it, so please comment below and let me know. Or similarly, if you have any lightweight foundations that you love, then share those too.