Now, this is how you debut a foundation range: After a very disappointing 32-shades-of-beige foundation release from Beautyblender last week, we were beginning the wonder if the 40-shade phenomenon we’ve dubbed the “Fenty effect” was beginning to wane, because that was just plain lazy.


But never fear: 32-year-old cosmetics brand Make Up For Ever has proven that evolution is still afoot, launching its latest foundation, Matte Velvet Skin, with a 40-shade full-spectrum range that is well distributed between fair, medium, deep and dark tones with a range of undertones.


The brand’s new Matte Velvet Skin foundation is clearly made for everybody—as evidenced by the brand’s skin swatches, which wisely show how the formula appears both fresh out of the bottle and dried down (because there is often a distinct difference).

And to be fair, while this is Make Up For Ever’s first 40-shade launch, their makeup artist-beloved line of Ultra HD foundations had actually grown to 40 shades while Fenty Beauty was still a glimmer in Rihanna’s eye; a fact that stirred up a little shade between the two brands when Fenty hit the market last October.


But all pettiness aside, how does Make Up For Ever’s Matte Velvet Skin—which promises 24-hours of breathable, oil-free coverage—perform? Beauty blogger Nyma Tang put it to the test, not only finding her shade match (choosing to match her chest, she actually settled on the second to darkest shade for her famously rich skin tone), but wearing it for a full 24 hours while she traveled from her native Dallas, Texas to New York City.

The result? Pretty impressive—in both shade match (post-dry-down) and longevity—as Tang ended her exhaustive journey at 3 a.m. still pleased to find her makeup pretty much intact.


So, as the foundation market continues its long-overdue expansion to accommodate every shade of makeup wearer, it looks like we have another worthy contender in Matte Velvet Skin—which at $38 for a one-ounce tube, it should be. And once again, it’s a teachable moment for beauty brands (we’re looking at you, Beautyblender): Inclusion is worth the effort—and laziness likely not worth the bad press.

Maiysha Kai is Managing Editor of The Glow Up, an avid eyeshadow enthusiast and always her own muse. Nuance is her superpower.

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