Neutrogena SkinClearing Oil-free Foundation & Mineral Powder Review

Since I decided to start wearing liquid foundation I started scouring the drugstore makeup aisles and making multiple trips to Sephora and Ulta. I wanted to find a medium to full coverage foundation that wouldn’t irritate my acne-prone skin and could stand up to my oily skin.

This brought me to the Neutrogena SkinClearing Oil-free Foundation. Now Neutrogena wasn’t my first choice or even in my consideration set. Not because of the foundation formula but because of their limited shade range.

Neutrogena was known for only having foundation and powder shades for lighter complexions. And while I’m not on the deep deep part of the shade range I’m nowhere near the light side either.

Neutrogena SkinClearing Oil-free Foundation and Mineral Powder Review

After doing some YouTube searches for drugstore foundations for oily skin. This one popped up. And some of the videos were of women in my shade range who were talking about the deeper shades available in the Neutrogena SkinClearing Oil-free Foundation I did a double-take and was like what?!

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After learning this I searched online and found the store nearest me carried the foundation in a shade that would work for me. Target was it and to my delight, there was a Cartwheel discount available as well as an Ibotta cash back offer. So I wouldn’t have to pay full price to try out the foundation.

After a few months of using the foundation, I also decided to purchase and try the corresponding mineral powder.

What they are. What they do

The Neutrogena SkinClearing Mineral Powder and the Foundation claim to be “the first and only liquid foundation formulated with MicroClear® Technology.” This technology is supposed to dissolve oil and quickly treat breakouts via salicylic acid. Additionally, both products claim to be non-comedogenic so they don’t clog pores. And since I have acne-prone and oily-to-combination skin this sounded perfect.

The foundation also claims to provide a natural look with a breathable feel and controlled shine. It comes in a 1-ounce bottle which is a typical size for liquid foundations. But it doesn’t have a pump. So you have to shake the foundation out onto something like a sponge or your hands to apply it.

The mineral powder comes with a two-sided puff with each side of the puff meant to help you apply the powder to get your desired level of coverage. The orange side of the puff is used to mattify your t-zone. The white side is to be used to smooth the powder all over your face for a fresh and natural look.

The trial period

I purchased the Neutrogena SkinClearing Oil-free Foundation and Mineral Powder in the darkest shade available - Chestnut. The swatches online look a lot darker than they do in person but I think that’s true for most makeup.

To apply both the foundation I use my Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge. The foundation pretty much melts into my skin. The shade Chestnut is a really good match and blends into my skin nicely.

I would say the type of coverage it provides is medium at best when built up. This works for me though because I’m not a fan of full coverage foundations for my every day and don’t have so many blemishes that need to be covered up.

Makeup to cover and clear up blemishes | A Relaxed Gal

The mineral powder I started using several weeks after the foundation. I also apply it with my makeup sponge. It gives me an even and mattified look that lasts for a few hours. I can typically go about 5 or so hours without having to blot if I’m spending most of my time indoors. The one downside is that despite being the same shade as the foundation, the powder looks a bit lighter, and applying too much gives my face a light cast.

I can’t necessarily say I’ve seen any drastic change in my skin. I still have the occasional breakout or pimple. Some of them will disappear quickly, others have lingered longer than I’d like them to.

The pros and cons

Overall I really like the foundation because of the way it blends into my skin, it doesn’t irritate my skin and can withstand my oily skin for a decent amount of time. It feels like I’m not even wearing foundation.

I don’t like though that it doesn’t have a pump and isn’t in a squeeze bottle so I have to shake the foundation out on the back of my hand and use either my sponge or fingers to apply it to my face. This can be a bit messy and even a bit unsanitary.

The mineral powder I’m not really sold on. It doesn’t seem to help control shine any more than other powders I’ve used. It also gives my skin that light cast I mentioned so my face looks unnaturally light for 30 minutes or so until it settles a bit on my face.

I’ve used the powder for touch-ups a few times and that also provided me mixed reviews. Using the orange side of the puff did restore the mattified look in my t-zone that I was shooting for. The white side though just made a mess of my foundation when I tried sweeping it across my face.

Overall I have to say that I will continue to use the foundation but the jury is still out on the mineral powder.

Have you tried any of the Neutrogena SkinClearing makeup products?