Back in May, Jones Road What the Foundation just about broke TikTok after makeup artist Meredith Duxbury slathered on way too much product and gave the foundation a bad review. This then led to brand founder Bobbi Brown clapping back by posting her own video, poking fun at Duxbury’s “application technique.” Regardless of that drama and some confusion about how to use it, the foundation, which the brand aptly calls a “tinted moisture balm,” has received thousands of positive reviews. I’ve been testing it every day for the past week, and these are my honest thoughts.
My Skin Type:
Combination. I’m drier in the cold-weather months and oilier in the warm-weather ones thanks to the high humidity on the East Coast. My skin tone is light and I typically wear a light-medium shade of foundation.
The best part of Jones Road What the Foundation‘s formula is the moisturizer element, as it contains both jojoba oil and sodium hyaluronate, which attracts moisture to the skin and has a smaller molecular size than hyaluronic acid, giving it a greater hydrating effect. I have combination skin, but lately I’ve been using a new retinol serum and my skin is on the drier side, so this foundation was the perfect choice.
The coverage is super light—it practically looks like I have nothing on—but if you’re someone who loves the “no makeup makeup” look, this foundation will be your new best friend. However, the formula does contain a lot of oil, so if you have oily skin, you may want to skip out on this one, or use very little and see how it wears throughout the day.
While I do appreciate light, natural-looking coverage, this foundation does not cover any of the redness around my chin and nose, or the little bit of hyperpigmentation on my forehead, or my few blemishes. I don’t expect it to work like concealer, or mask my dark circles, but most of the foundation products I’ve tried give me more of a tone-evening effect. So if you’re someone who doesn’t like to use concealer, go with something that has more coverage. And if you do like to use concealer and you’re in the market for a new one, the brand suggests pairing WTF with The Face Pencil to hide dark circles, redness and the like.
Jojoba seed oil and sodium hyaluronate
What the Foundation Is Free From:
Parabens, phthalates, sulfates, petrolatum, PEGs, cyclic silicones, EDTA and BPA, among other ingredients included in the brands “clean” standards
How to Use the Foundation:
Well, there’s some debate here, but I’ll start by saying rule number-one is don’t apply a huge glob—start with a little bit on a spatula (I wish this was included with the product instead of sold separately) and build up with more if need be. There are 12 flexible shades—Beige was a great shade match for my skin—and the brand says they work across all skin tones.
I tried applying the foundation three ways—with a dense foundation brush, a sponge and my fingers—and the brush and sponge soaked up so much product that hardly anything transferred to my skin. I found that the best approach was applying the product directly from the spatula to my skin, and then blending it in with a brush, using more of a stamping motion to press it evenly into my skin.
What It Feels Like:
My initial thought was that WTF looks and feels a little like pudding in the jar. On my skin, it’s very moisturizing and feels almost like a moisturizer when I apply it and blend it in.
The Bottom Line:
If you are a full-glam person and like a medium or full-coverage foundation, this is not the product for you. It’s lighter than most tinted moisturizers I’ve tried—it does not hide any redness—and definitely suits those who love the “no makeup makeup” look best.
Price/Where to Buy: