Makeup By Mario SurrealSkin Foundation review: Here's what the Cosmo beauty team thought of the brand's first foundation

makeup by mario surrealskin review
Is Makeup By Mario's first foundation worth it?Hearst Owned

Makeup by Mario (AKA, Mario Dedivanovic) knows a good base – fact. There’s a reason why Kim Kardashian’s complexion hasn’t looked a touch out of place since Mario became her go-to beauty guru. Arguably one of the best perks of Sephora *finally* launching in the UK was that it brought over pretty much the entire Makeup by Mario collection, making it a whole lot easier for us Brits to get our mitts on the range.

One of the most hyped-up launches from the brand was the highly anticipated SurrealSkin Foundation (£44). If you haven’t seen it all over TikTok (where have you been?), it’s the first foundation under the brand's umbrella, so the hype is real, to say the least.

It’s supposed to provide skin with a “radiant glow, and customisable, long-lasting coverage”, whilst still being lightweight and “breathable” for your skin; it screams ‘your skin but better’. SurrelSkin comes in 30 shades to pick from and promises to be non-oxidising (which means you won’t change colour and resemble a Wotsit by lunch). Despite its luminosity, it promises to stick around for the long haul, which makes it seem like all our foundation dreams have come true.

It's also officially launched in the UK on Sephora, so it only seemed right that we tried it out. To see whether SurrealSkin lives up to the hype and really does what Mario says on the tin, the Cosmo beauty team put it to the test. Here are our honest thoughts on the Makeup by Mario’s SurrealSkin Foundation…

Makeup by Mario’s SurrealSkin Foundation review

Keeks Reid, Acting Beauty Director

makeup by mario surrealskin review
Hearst Owned

IF by any chance you can’t seem to find the shade 21W anywhere it’s because I have indeed stockpiled it. I love this foundation. A long-wearing foundation that is radiant but doesn’t slip after a couple of hours isn’t easy to find but Mario has managed just that.

I applied mine with a dense buffing brush and the finish was perfectly light but set well too. If you have pigment issues or uneven skin tone and you want more coverage, this can be layered in areas without it looking like a mask. I’m fully obsessed.

Lia Mappoura, Beauty Assistant

makeup by mario surrealskin review
Before vs. after applying SurrealSkinHearst Owned

To preface, I am a greasy b*tch (read: have an oily skin type), so, was sceptical before trying out Mario’s luminous finish foundation. As expected, it gave a gorgeous illuminating complexion – but of course, to prevent it from completely melting off, I had to heavily set it with loose powder.

As shown in the before and after pictures, my face is a lot lighter than my body, so, I always tend to colour match my neck. After much contemplation, I opted for shade 14O, which may look like fake tan in a bottle but was the perfect tone for me.

Now, as someone whose base products tend to be matte, I, admittedly, wouldn’t reach for this on the daily. But despite me being a naysayer, I would recommend this, particularly for the dryer folk among us. Think: Hailey Bieber glazed doughnut skin but with buildable pigmented coverage.

Charlotte Bitmead, Acting Senior Beauty Writer

makeup by mario surrealskin review
Bare skin vs. one layer of SurrealSkin Hearst Owned

As a combo-skin gal, finding a foundation that doesn’t separate on my dry patches – but also doesn’t leave me mopping up my oily patches by lunch – is no small feat. That’s of course, if I even manage to find a shade match for my pasty-pale skin. I went with shade 2N and despite looking questionably ashy in the bottle, once applied to skin it looked pretty spot on.

I painted it on with my trusty Jones Road The Everything Brush and buffed and built up to get to my go-to full coverage, and it blended seamlessly. I was pleasantly surprised by how dewy the finish was, really giving my skin a healthy wake-up call in the process. Powder was a must for my chin and t-zone area to avoid sweaty-looking skin, so if your skin's more oily, this might be tricky to work with. However, I did love how juicy it made my skin look and was impressed with how well it covered my pesky breakouts.

By some random luck, my skin is pretty smooth at the moment but if you are struggling with texture I get the feeling that this might exacerbate the problem (as thicker dewier foundations tend to do). Shade-wise, if you are paler than me, I think you’ll struggle to find a match that works for you as a lot of the undertones tend to be on the yellow-er side of the spectrum. If you're after expensive-looking skin though, this is a dream come true.

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