I’ve seen Youtubers, Instagram Baddies and regular folk using the Beautyblender make up sponge over the last couple of years. They’re everywhere and I’ve wanted to try it out for a while. But am I about to drop £16.00 on one?
And so, I did what every girl on a budget does; I went to Superdrug, found they had naff all in stock and walked down the road to Boots.
After spending some time sifting through make up sponges, wedges, brushes and the like, I came across their own brand 3 in 1 Blending Sponge. The reviews online were amazing (which I only looked up after I bought the item, whoops) and probably the best set of reviews I’ve ever seen for a product.
What makes it 3 in 1, you ask? I’m assuming that this is down to the shape of the sponge itself. The packaging states the pointed tip is for around the eyes, the base is for the cheeks, forehead etc and the contoured middle is for around the jaw line, blending into the neck.
Testing this out, I decided to try a few different foundations of different textures, to see how the sponge would perform. It also gave me the chance to sample Lush’s Jackie Oates, which I’ve been putting off because it doesn’t smell very nice. Following the instructions, I dampened the sponge slightly (literally ran it under the warm tap for one second), applied patches of foundation on my face and went to town.
First up was Jackie Oates. It’s a very thick foundation that is supposed to be mixed with moisturiser – which I would never do as that always leaves my skin dry and patchy.
I was pleasantly surprised at the coverage considering I had half a fingertip of product in the sample pot. It’s very light but masked all of my blemishes, except around the eyes. Ain’t nothing gonna cover up those dark circles. I did as the Youtubers do and patted the foundation into my skin with the sponge and found that it blended easily, without leaving patches behind, as my foundation brushes sometimes do.
After this, I used my normal Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation.
I was starting to lose the light at this point, so one half of my face looks a lot lighter than the other. Overall, I was less impressed with this foundation on the sponge. It covered up most of my blemishes but I had to use a lot more product as the sponge soaked up the liquid extremely quickly. It’s a medium coverage foundation anyway, so I wasn’t expecting too much from it.
I moved on to a Maybelline Dream Matte
Lies Mousse I bought on a whim earlier this year, hoping it was as good as I remembered when it was first launched. It was not.
This one was actually the most impressive, ignoring the foundation in my hair. I used a bit too much but it went on smoothly with the sponge, covering most of my eye bags and blemishes.The sponge blended the foundation down onto my neck with the centre bit, which was strangely difficult. I couldn’t quite get the hang of it.
Finally, I tried Max Factor Whipped Creme Foundation. It’s not quite as moussey as Dream Matte, but not as thin as Bourjois, whilst still being creamier than Jackie Oates. I thought it would be a good all-rounder to end on.
I also forgot how bad the colour match was. I look like an orange-jawed ghost.
I honestly didn’t see any difference in application between this and the Dream Matte. It went on smoothly with the sponge, but I struggled with the jaw line using the contour, so gave up and just used the tip. It made no difference.
Overall, I like how much coverage you get with this sponge. Application is quick and easy – each face of foundation took about a minute, if that, to apply. You can really get into the corners of the eyes and nose with the tip, to cover any blemishes (although my foundations aren’t great with that).
The only things I didn’t like was the section for blending into the jaw line and neck, it seemed a bit pointless and overly difficult to me, and cleaning it.
Washing this sponge is an ordeal, let’s put it that way. With a make up brush, you know when its clean as the bristles are the colour they are meant to be and the waters runs clear. This sponge, oh dear. It took 20 minutes to rinse out all of the makeup and still, I couldn’t remove the stains from the tip. Yes, stains. Lovely.
If you’re looking for a cheap alternative to Beautyblender, then I would recommend giving this a try. It costs £3.50 and even if you think it’s crap, then at least you won’t have wasted a lot of money.