With online beauty sales booming, it’s clear that we’ve learned to love buying make-up via our phones, rather than heading into a store (remember those?). But while it might be easy to add a favourite lipstick or trusted eye palette straight into that virtual cart, finding the best foundation online remains the final frontier. With so many nuances in shades, not to mention undertones, selecting a base product without an in-person swatching session remains risky.

This is where new tech-led beauty brand Il Makiage comes in. You’ve probably heard of them, or at least seen a slice of their major Instagram presence. Launched just two years ago, the brand wants to finally make shopping for foundation online a practical reality, using a comprehensive PowerMatch algorithm to lead you to your perfect bottle of its signature Woke Up Like This foundation, which comes in 50 shades.

IL MAKIAGE Woke Up Like This Foundation

Woke Up Like This Foundation

IL MAKIAGE Woke Up Like This Foundation


The quiz itself is pretty straightforward: questions progress from your skin type (so far, so standard), onto your preferred method of application, and finally a set of questions to determine your exact skin tone.

But can a foundation seen only through a screen really live up to such high expectations? According to the 469,000 people who have left an independent 5 star review, yes. Not only do thousands of make-up wearers sing the foundation’s praises, but it’s also the most-reviewed product in the US – no big deal.

We had to see if the foundation lived up to the hype, so our beauty team put the famous formula to the test on camera…

That’s not all, either. While the brand’s signature foundation is clearly the star of the show, there’s also a sprawling collection of eye, lip and face products to explore. You can simply shop via product, or scroll through the brand’s endless catalogue of artists and influencers for a spot of inspiration, before clicking through to purchase their kit.

Let’s be honest here – when I first heard about the brand, I wasn’t completely sold. Anything that forces its way into my eyeballs via an aggressive #ad campaign generally makes me sceptical, and the fact that I can’t swatch half a dozen shades before selecting my best match always makes me lose interest.

But in the name of serious journalism, I took the quiz and waited patiently for my perfect foundation match to arrive at my door.

So, let’s talk about the formula. I’m loyal to light and glowy coverage (Kevyn Aucoin Stripped Nude Skin Tint, if you’re asking), so seeing all the completely poreless influencers backing this one brought me out in a bit of a sweat.

But I have to say, I actually kind of…love it? The coverage is indeed major, yet it doesn’t feel like a heavy-duty foundation at all: in fact, I completely forget I’m wearing it during the day. The finish is a little more matte and velvety than I’d normally go for, but it doesn’t feel dry or cakey, even after a full day’s wear. And the shade? Going against all expectations, mine was perfect. Embarrassingly, it’s better suited to my tricky-to-match, pale but warm-toned skin than the foundations I’ve chosen myself.

Would I buy it again? For days when I need to step up my coverage, absolutely. And while I’m there, I’d add these four similarly brilliant heroes to my order too…


Credit: Il Makiage

After being so pleasantly surprised by the foundation, Il Makiage’s concealer was naturally the next product I reached for – and let me tell you, it’s a winner. Similar to the foundation, it blends seamlessly into skin and covers my colossal dark circles in a single swipe. There’s no cakey texture, and it doesn’t settle into pesky dehydration lines. Trust me: try it. 

Black Card Eyeliner

Il Makiage Black Card Eyeliner
Credit: Il Makiage

It takes a lot for a liquid eyeliner to impress me, but this one has instantly found its way into my regular rotation. It’s completely waterproof and resists smudging for an entire day – even on my oily, hooded eyelids, which is no easy feat. The felt-pen nib is easy to control too. 

Black Card Mascara

Il Makiage Black Card Mascara
Credit: Il Makiage

I wasn’t hugely impressed with Il Makiage’s original Icon mascara, but this new launch is nothing short of amazing. It’s a thick, rich formula that adds serious volume to each lash (wiggle it to avoid clumping) and genuinely curls so well, I ditched my lash curler for what might be the first time ever. 

Mineral Baked Highlighter

Mineral Baked Highlighter
Credit: Il Makiage

Not many powder highlighters can deliver the dewy, almost wet-look gleam that this one does. With all-day staying powder and an ultra-fine finish, it’s a great buildable staple that’ll take you from day to night. 


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