Brands With The Widest Range of Foundation Shades

When Fenty Beauty dropped 40 foundation shades, its debut got the makeup industry shookt. With darker shades flying off the shelves, Rihanna proved there was a demand for more inclusivity in beauty.

Since then, the ‘Fenty effect’ has put every other makeup brand in the hot seat to increase their foundation shade range. And like the American beauty scene, Singapore’s makeup industry is no different.

Using the Fenty Beauty’s 40-shade range as the benchmark, we compiled a list of foundations for our tanned Chinese, Malay, and Indian sisters so they no longer have to settle for one shade too light.

Note: we all have varying undertones, so check if you have a cool/neutral/warm tone here.

1. ColourPop Hyaluronic Hydrating Foundation


Number of shades: 42
Price: ~S$21
Where to buy:

ColourPop’s foundation comes in 42 shades, divided into six categories: fair, light, medium, medium dark, dark, and deep dark, so everyone can find their match easily.

This bottle houses an oil-free, full coverage formula which gives the complexion a natural, matte finish. It has a thin, serum-like consistency, so it blends easily with a brush, makeup sponge, or your fingers.

2. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation


Number of shades: 50
Price: S$73
Where to buy: Sephora stores and

The Pro Filt’r foundation gives the skin a matte finish that doesn’t feel drying or look cakey, and minimises the appearance of pores for an airbrushed effect. It’s oil-free and sweat-resistant too, which works well in our humid climate.

Do note that the formula oxidises to a darker shade a few minutes after application, so we suggest you head to a Sephora store to test it out before purchasing.

3. M.A.C Studio Fix Fluid Foundation SPF 15

Number of shades: 67
Price: S$73
Where to buy: M.A.C stores and counters, Sephora stores, and

The O.G. of experimental makeup, M.A.C Cosmetics, has expanded their Studio Fix Fluid collection with new colours.

Their liquid foundation offers medium to full coverage and is particularly good for combination to oily skin as it dries to a matte finish. The long-wear formula contains silica to soak up sebum, which smooths skin for a poreless finish and controls oil production.

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4. Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation


Number of shades: 40
Price: S$70
Where to buy: Dior boutiques and counters, and

The buzziest launch from Dior’s Backstage collection was undoubtedly its Face & Body Foundation. Used by professionals backstage at Fashion Week (hence the name), this buildable formula gives a natural, matte finish to the skin.

Like a couple others on this list, the Dior Face & Body is also sweat-resistant, so it can withstand the heat and humidity.

5. Make Up For Ever HD Skin Hydra Glow Foundation


Number of shades: 36
Price: S$74
Where to buy: Make Up For Ever stores and counters, Sephora stores, and

If you’re searching for a foundation to get you through the apocalypse with flawless skin, Make Up For Ever’s will fit the bill.

Created for the latest high-definition technologies of television and film, the HD Skin Hydra Glow Foundation provides medium coverage, while its light-diffusing formula looks and feels like second skin when worn.

Brands With The Widest Foundation Shade Ranges

Certain foundation ranges may not have hit the 40-shade mark, but have great formulas. The below brands have cult formulations too, and are available over the counter at their respective outlets.

From left to right:
NYX Total Control Drop Foundation
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Full Coverage Foundation SPF 15
Kat Von D Lock-It Liquid Foundation
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation
Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Makeup SPF 10

While it’s great more makeup brands are moving to expand their foundation shade, some companies are only doing so because it’s trendy. These brands then fail to actually increase the variety of darker shades or manufacture 12 similar shades of ivory.

Some brands hopped onto the foundation inclusivity bandwagon by boasting “40 shades is nothing new to us”. But the point of shade inclusivity is to recognise and meet the needs of those with darker skin tones. It’s not a competition, guys.

This article was first published on 13 September 2018 and last updated on 4 June 2024.

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