Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation

Possibly the most talked-about launch of the year so far, with the new Chanel No1 line coming in a close second, you can’t miss the buzz around the Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation. Of course, I have been armed and ready to put this gal to the test, and goodness have I done that! So let’s find out if this new Tilbury launch lives up to its claims and there’s a lot of them…

Beautiful Skin Foundation

Beautiful Skin Foundation is the 3rd foundation launch from Charlotte Tilbury. It joins Light Wonder; a lightweight dewy foundation and Flawless Foundation; a full coverage, matte foundation.

It is a buildable medium coverage, hydrating foundation, available in 30 shades.


  • Buildable medium coverage
  • hydrating foundation
  • 16hr wear, long lasting formula
  • skincare ingredients
  • Available in 30 shades, cool, neutral, warm undertones
  • Vegan friendly

There are some pretty amazing claims that come with the marketing of this foundation, my maths is no longer good enough to even work out some of the percentages, I’m not even sure how you can quantify a radiance increase of 285%! Let’s take a look at them along with the foundation’s key ingredients:

  • Beautifully RADIANT by 285%*
  • Beautifully HYDRATED by up to 166%*
  • Skin tone APPEARS MORE EVEN by up to 210%*
  • Over 90% agree Beautiful Skin Foundation IMPROVES THE APPEARANCE OF SKIN with each wear.**
  • Over 90% agree Beautiful Skin Foundation helps to MINIMIZEthe APPEARANCE of PORESPIGMENTATION and DARK SPOTS.**
[All from the Charlotte Tilbury website]

Some pretty impressive results? And truly amazing, however, I’m personally just not a big fan of this kind of marketing, I find it a little OTT, let’s face it Charlotte Tilbury doesn’t need it, we are excited for new launches as is.

  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Bix’Activ™ helps to decrease the appearance of oiliness and visibly reduce the look of shine and pores.
  •  Rose Complex targets all signs of stress in the skin including dullness, dryness, pigmentation and dark circles for skin that looks brighter, smoother, hydrated and more youthful.
  • Hyalurosmooth™ targets uneven texture,
  • Coconut Extract 

Shade Range

“The NEUTRALISED BASE, clear colour pigment formula + MOLECULE COMPLEX in all 30 shades mean they STRETCH WIDE across ALL skin tones, skin undertones and skin types!”

In today’s market I feel this isn’t a large enough, diverse enough range of shades. While not the worst at present (in regard to poor shade range launches – I mean come on brands?!!) it is disappointing that a huge brand such as this isn’t catering to more people.


A tube of Tilbury foundation lays on a makeup vanity

As ever, the packaging is gorgeous! Charlotte Tilbury packaging will always look divine on a vanity that’s for sure.

Housed in a white card box, etched with the infamous CT logo and all the product info, in a soft fully recyclable tube with a matching rose gold lid.

The foundation tube itself sits well in the palm of hand while the pump releases the foundation. I find it to be accessible and a pleasure to use.

Beautiful Skin vs Light Wonder & Airbrush Flawless Foundations

As I mentioned briefly earlier, Light wonder is the most lightweight with light, natural coverage foundation of the three now available. Its finish is dewy and fresh.

Beautiful Skin sits in the middle as a light-cream textured foundation, that has a glowy and dewy finish, with claims of 16hr wear.

Flawless Foundation is a full coverage, long-wear, matte foundation.

Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation 3 c swatches - Light wonder 3 swatches - airbrush flawless 3n swatches
Swatches are full at the top and roughly blended from halfway.

I used the shade matcher on the Charlotte Tilbury website, choosing two completely makeup free photo’s in natural light. I went through the programme twice and was offered shades 3C and 3N. Seeing how 3N in the swatches online has quite a strong yellow tone to it I opted for 3C, which was spot on (although I did come into a little issue which we’ll get into further on).


Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation has a glowy, radiant finish. There is a slight shimmer in it, on the skin this shows as a radiant healthy glow. It is very flattering and doesn’t enhance fine lines. Because of this, I think this foundation will suit both mature skin and youthful skin alike.

You can really see the beautiful finish in my ‘Full face Charlotte Tilbury makeup reel’ here!


The foundation is marketed as a ‘buildable medium’ coverage. This would give the impression of a medium coverage foundation that you can build to a more fuller coverage.

I find it to be more of a lightweight coverage foundation than the ‘medium buildable’. It does cover my redness, but I still need a touch more concealer to completely cover red veins and blemish marks. Applying further layers of the foundation would feel too heavy for me.

Claims & Cost

Charlotte Tilbury is Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free and this foundation is vegan friendly.

Beautiful Skin Foundation is £34 for 30ml.

Testing Tilbury

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty, shall we?! I am forever on the hunt for my perfect base, aren’t we all?

My skin type: Oily/combination. Currently sensitive and dehydrated.

It was love at first launch with this foundation, I knew I had to have her, the promise of a ‘beautiful skin’ foundation with buildable coverage spoke to me. I tend to enjoy a satin to dewy foundation but one that doesn’t lead to greasiness and shine; I’m an oily skinned girl after all. Way back in the day I may have reached for a more matte foundation, however, they do not suit my combination skin, plus, I love my glow! So I want it both ways; I ask a lot of a base – and why not?

However, now that I have it, I’m a little on the fence. I tested this foundation 5 ways, to fully get to know it, to appreciate how it might work best with and for my skin. Here’s how I got on.

I’ve chosen 3 of the 5 to go into detail with you. The first change was dropping a moisturiser step in my skincare routine. With a foundation like this, my skin doesn’t need the extra layer and the foundation wore too quickly.

For all of these tests my skincare remains the same:

Cerave Hydrating Cleanser, Dr Sam Bunting Brightly Serum, Biore Aqua SPF50

Beautiful Skin Foundation + Powder Products:

I applied the foundation straight to my prepped skin about 20mins after I’d finished my skincare. Using a flat foundation brush to swipe the product over my skin. Finished with Airbrush Powder, Filmstar Bronze & Glow.

Results: The foundation feels quite heavy on my skin and I feel ‘made up’, however looking in the mirror from a distance my base looks great. My skin is glowy and perfected. It doesn’t take long at all, about 15 mins for my natural oils to begin to show at my t-zone. I find myself needing to blot and top up with powder multiple times. I notice early on that the once-perfect shade match has oxidised.

At the end of 7hrs, I check the foundation to find a disappointing amount of wear. Around my nose, cheeks, and forehead the makeup has worn leaving my redness visible. The foundation around outer cheeks and foreheard has stayed in place well.

Beautiful Skin Foundation + Powder Products + Primer

Following on from yesterday I know that today I need to address my base. My skincare is ok, so I look to a primer and apply some of the Benefit Porefessional, the foundation with a flat kabuki foundation brush and followed with cream bronzer.

Results: I wanted to see how the foundation will mesh with cream makeup, it is a type of makeup I favour so they need to be friends. A cream bronzer and blush apply well on top of the foundation and it doesn’t move upon application. I also didn’t find the foundation’s wear was affected by the use of cream cheek products as opposed to powder ones.

While my t-zone was slightly better in this trial, by the end of the day I still had a breakdown of the makeup and has been oily throughout the day.

Beautiful Skin Foundation + Powder Products + Primer + setting spray

I began with Figs & Rouge Ultra-Primer, then the foundation with a round foundation brush. After setting with powder, I used the Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless setting spray. Over the few days of testing, I have found that between 1-1.5 pumps of foundation is more than enough for me.

Results: This is definitely the winning combination of products for this foundation and my skin; it really is about prep and finishing. I found the foundation to be a little more flattering, to not get as shiny so quickly and I required fewer top-ups. At 8hrs I had visual wear and breakdown of foundation on the chin, nose and forehead, everywhere else looked flawless.

My preferrred brush for application has been a round foundation brush like the:

Zoeva 102 Silk Finish Brush or Real Techniques Expert Face Brush 200.

My Thoughts

Most Suited To: Balanced, Normal. Dry Skin     Least Suited To: Oily, Combination Skin

I was a little surprised at the thickness of the formula, I expected it to be somewhat lighter in its consistency. I find that the foundation applies well, however, do notice that it settles around dry/dehydrated areas. While I can’t speak for any of the skincare benefits, it has only been a week, it is a hydrating foundation, there’s no doubt about that. I feel a little torn, a little on the fence. I want to love it more than I do. However, that’s for me, for my skin. If I put my makeup artist hat on for a second I can say that this foundation feels catered towards a normal, balanced or dry skin type. I don’t believe it suits all skin types as they claim. Those without oily skins will enjoy that comforting layer, that boost of glow and I imagine it will wear better without the natural, excess oils of an oilier skin to break it down.

Beautiful Skin foundation does oxidise on me, on my first application (you can see my reel here) the match is perfect and I was chuffed! However, it sadly oxidises to be more yellow-toned and deeper, so much so, if I were to buy it again, I’d go for 2C to try and combat it.

The foundation truly does beautify the skin. It is as though Flawless Filter (the incredible glow booster) and Magic Away Concealer (two products I love) had a baby. In some lights, I’ll catch my reflection in a passing mirror and be shocked at how great my base looks; glowy, perfected. However, when I look closely and examine, I see the foundations wear and the oxidisation appears more noticeable. My pores are also amplified around my nose, this is smoothed somewhat with the addition of primer of course, but it is worth mentioning.

It’s a foundation that needs a bit of effort if you’re of a similar skin type to mine. To get the best out of it, I need the prep and finish of a primer and setting spray; I’m not always into that, but I equally don’t mind it. It feels heavy on my skin, it isn’t lightweight in that sense and I can certainly appreciate how a more dry skin type may welcome a cushioning, creamier foundation. If you’re someone who prefers lighter textured bases this one might not be for you.

Beautiful Skin Foundation does make my skin look beautiful upon application and photographs well but it’s not perfect and I don’t believe it’s best suited to those in the oily/combo camp. IMHO this foundation will be favoured by the normal and dry skin folks and I feel its glow and perfecting capabilities will go down well. The reviews on instagram have been fabulous, I think this one is just not going to end up a favourite for me.

Charlotte Tilbury Foundation available here

Edit: Just a little point that I forgot to mention – I find this foundation quite similar in finish to the Maybelline Dream Radiant Foundation, which I really enjoy. Well, in my mind I remember it to be similar; I’m going to dig it out and try it again to be sure! I know that this Maybelline foundation is lighter in texture. I will update with a comparison soon!

Read more about Charlotte Tilbury:

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Away Concealer

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Vanish

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  1. Very interesting, will definitely re read when I need to buy my next foundation, thanks!

  2. Hmm I fear that with combination oily skin, it may cling to my dry areas more than I want it too, I’ll try and get a sample beforehand and see, especially I’m so very pale skinned anyway, I suspect I’d need the lightest shade but I’m not sure it’s light enough x

    1. I did find the ‘foundation finder’ on their website quite accurate but as I mentioned it did oxidise on me, so if you are able to pick up a sample I think that would be the best option. It’s a strange one as I know many people with dry-normal skin types who are loving this foundation, they do say they need to exfoliate dry patches first however, but I def found it clung to my drier areas (even after exfoliation). I’d def recommend trialling it if you can. Those who love it, really do love it! Thanks for reading!

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