Favourite Drugstore Liquid Foundations

I seriously wish I could live on just drugstore foundations. FYI we don't actually call them "drugstore" foundations here in Malaysia, because we call those stores "pharmacy" here, but since nobody ever calls them "pharmacy foundations"...

The only reason I can't is the colour selections of foundations at our local pharmacies are really not the best. Considering that Malaysia is made up of plenty of races, with varying degrees of fair, tanned and dark skin tones, the idea that a foundation range comes in only about five shades is almost absurd, but that's what's basically happening here.

Back in the days I was willing to mix two shades to get the right one but I discovered it's too much of a hasslewhy bother mixing two foundations when you can get one high-end foundation that perfectly (or almost perfectly) matches your skin colour? And yet that didn't stop me from dipping my toes back in the local drugstore pool of foundations (drugstore pool? Sounds dodgy), but I always come out disappointed. One option for me is to buy from overseas. Hardly the best option, but why not?

Revlon Colorstay for Combination / Oily Skin 360 Golden Caramel: One of the very first foundations I used and extremely loved, there are very, VERY limited shades of Revlon Colorstay foundations in the pharmacies here. I used to mix shades 350 and 370 to get a nice match, so I figured 360 would be the one for me, and searching about it online confirmed this. Weirdly this shade isn't being sold in Asia or Europe; I couldn't even find this when I was studying in New Zealand. Thankfully Shah visited Atlanta a couple of months ago and managed to buy me this.
I really like its semi-matte finish, and I'm pleased that the full coverage doesn't end up cakey on my face. My favourite part of this foundation is shade 360 is pretty spot on for me! Some drugstore foundations made me break out but this one never has, so thumbs-up all around.

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Liquid Makeup in 110 Honey Beige: I knew about this foundation from watching Marlena of Makeup Geek's videos years ago. I had no idea what shade I was, though, so Shah had to compare their foundation shades to L'oreal True Match N7 and W7 when he was in US' Walmart (what a trooperand a keeper!), and he decided on Honey Beige. It's a close match to my forehead, which is darker than the rest of my face, but it still works for me. One of the advantages of wearing the hijab is you don't need to exactly match your foundation shade to your neck or body!
This foundation feels light on the skin and I really like the glowy, dewy finish. It provides less coverage than Revlon Colorstay but as always I'm all for a good natural-looking foundation. I might even go as far as saying Neutrogena Healthy Skin Liquid Makeup is almost as good as NARS Sheer Glow.
Not quite. But almost.

Colour-transfer could be a bit of a problem with these two, though. I always think it's better to splurge on a really good high-end foundation than to get a subpar one in a pharmacy / drugstore, but that being said, I would still re-buy both these foundations as they're so affordable, and good enough.

Nowadays I only use Mario Badescu Special Healing Powder to finish up my makeup, because I discovered that my pressed powders changed the colour of my foundation. I did mention that I would one day ditch my regular makeup powder for it, but to be honest I didn't think it would actually happen!

If you're a Malaysian (or an Asian), do you experience the same kind of frustration of not finding the perfect foundation shades from pharmacies as I do?
To those who have tried out these two foundations, what do you think of them?


  1. SaMe case here in India. Most drugstores only release fair foundations

  2. I have bookmarked your foundation hunt post as a reference to buy foundations :)

    1. Ah, the never-ending quest for the perfect foundation. I really hope it will be of some help to you, Thripti! xo

  3. How much is the Neutrogena healthy skin foundation? Why I can't find it anyway in malaysia

    1. I mentioned that the Neutrogena was purchased from Walmart, which is in the US. I probably should have made that fact clearer, I apologise for that, and I will edit my content. Unfortunately it is still not available in Malaysia! Perhaps, one day soon...

  4. when i saw you, i knew that we have the same skin colour. i faced the same trouble as you were because most of the drugstore only sell foundation for fair skin (which is totally UNFAIR for us who have TAN skin). i immediately explore your makeup section and learn most of the tricks from you. thank you so much ^^ Can i ask you whether does peach eyeshadow fits for tan skin?

    1. Hi Naddy Amira,

      I am SO GLAD you found my blog helpful! I completely agree with you, it is incredibly unfair that there isn't a wider array of foundation shades available in Malaysia, especially considering the fact that there are plenty of ethnicities here, with so many different skin tones within any ethnicity! It's mind-boggling, really, that they think it's OK to put that limited of colours in local pharmacies. It's unfair that we have to turn to high-end brands to find our shade, because not all of us can afford that!

      Regarding peach eyeshadow: I actually think there isn't any colour that doesn't suit tan skin tones, but it's about finding which shades of that colour that suit you the best! It's all about experimenting, I suppose. I find that looking at photos of makeup on other people who have a similar skin tone to you helps, too; I like to use Pinterest for that.


Post a Comment

I'd love to have a conversation with you about my post. Please share your thoughts & I'll reply as soon as I can!

Contact Form for Pages [DO NOT DELETE]

Hi, I'm Liyana

I'm a modest blogger based in Malaysia. Here on The Good Weekender, you can find journals of my evolving modest personal style, based on the art of looking casually stylish while still remaining modest, and doing it all on a budget.