Airbrush - The Foundations
Choosing the right formula to airbrush with can be quite daunting. Water-based, Silicone-based, Alcohol-based, Hybrids, what do I choose for my kit?
Below is a review of all the formulas I have tried and rated based on finish, feeling, performance and spray quality with 5 star quality. Lower stars meaning poorly, higher stars meaning excellent.
Finish - How the product looks on the skin: dewy, matte, skin-like, natural, heavy, etc.
Feeling - How the product feels on the skin: lightweight, invisible, heavy, thick, comfortable, uncomfortable
Performance - How the product lasts throughout a day of wear: long-wear, separates, disappears, holds under tears and perspiration, water resistant, not water-resistant
Spray Quality - How the product blows through a gun or pod: smooth, effortless, clogs, spatters, clogs easily, never clogs, needs lots of pressure, uses low pressure
Kett Cosmetics Hydro is a water-based formula which in the world of water-based is a TRUE water-based due to it’s quick dry down. It is a sheer to medium coverage that works on any skin type.
Huge range of different categories for a full, complete airbrush service. Blushes are the perfect tones, Contours are the most realistic skin shadows, Highlights are so smooth and give gorgeous glow, with optional Adjuster Colors, Metals (which are my personal favorites) and a great collection of warm and ruby tones for a great global kit.
Finish - The finish is extremely skin like and perfect for any HD camera work and photography. The clients that love this product are wanting a natural, no makeup feel.
Feeling - Looks like skin, feels like skin. This foundation feels almost invisible and very comfortable on the skin.
Performance - It’s naturally skin loving, so it wears incredibly well. However, due to the fact it is water based, the foundation is not water-proof, but rather resistant. Which means it will work with water, and can be activated with water, but doesn’t repel water. A tear can slightly disturb the makeup, but as long as the client blots gently, it holds up well. As with any makeup, too much friction will destroy the finish.
Spray Quality - Sprays incredibly smooth due to the water content. Make sure if you need to thin (which I never need to with this product) or clean, use distilled or bottled water. Never tap water.
Kett Hydro Proof is the alcohol based formula everyone should have on hand. When the request comes for scar, tattoo and bruise coverage, you need a product that will not run off on an expensive gown or tux and is resistant to all the hugs and performance that is needed for any situation.
Finish - hyper matte is the best way to describe this. It dries down instantly and leaves zero shine. It can be thinned for a nice transparency or used in layers to create an opaque finish. When using as a cover up, make sure to use multiple tones to “break up” the skin, and lightly spatter - no ones skin is one solid color.
Feeling - Thick, tight and dry is the best way to describe this feeling, which is why I do not use this on my clients face. It also can cause them to hold their breath while applying due to the alcohol content in the formula. I leave this strictly for the body and camouflage.
Performance - This performs amazing for perspiration, water proof, stunt proof, rub proof, you name it! It will not transfer on clothes and I’ve used it on extensive fight scenes for film and tv and it didn’t budge. Because of this some clients are enticed to use it as a foundation, but I don’t particularly recommend that due to the feeling and drying quality.
Spray Quality - Since it’s thin in nature, it sprays really smooth and evenly. However since it’s alcohol, it will dry incredibly fast and has a tendency to get clogged or ‘dry tip.’ So make sure your 99% alcohol is nearby to clean the tip and the cup out immediately after use.
Temptu S/B formula is my least favorite, but I wanted to review it since it is discussed a lot. It is a silicone based formula which is good to have in your kit, but I think there are better performers out there.
The color range in this line is questionable as they do tend to run very yellow and you need to correct them. The bronzers (ya no contour colors -_-) are two colors only. While they do have blushes and highlights, it still leaves me with less to do a complete full service.
Finish - This formula can read very dewy very quickly, too much or too much thinning, you have a slippery mess with no use for longevity. It can read thick naturally due to the silicone ingredients. Great for fuller coverage requests.
Feeling - All silicone will leave the skin feeling unbreathable, which is why I am not a big fan of silicone anything. It is always described as feeling heavy and thick. Some clients do like these types of foundations, however most do not.
Performance - Due to silicones nature, it can move and slide throughout the day. Too much applied, or too much silicone thinner added and you’re asking for issues. This does not work well on mature skin that runs oily. While it can soften the look of texture, it will also find it’s way into all the groves of the skin. It does repel water, tears and sweat well, but you must not touch the skin or risk removing the product.
Spray Quality - Silicone formulas perform the worst in terms of spray-ability. Because they are naturally thicker, they NEED an airbrush gun with a larger needle (.5mm). Since they are harder to spray, they also need a compressor with a good range of PSI (pressure per square inch) such as 15-20psi in the bare minimum. This explains why so many people have clogging and spray difficulties. I also feel like this irritated my lungs, and with long term exposure, I’m not so happy with that thought.
If you must have a silicone formula in your kit, let it be this one. This has always been my favorite formula for performance due to the hybrid mix of water and silicone.
Disappointed there is no continuation of this formula in Blush, Contour, Highlights, etc. I assume they want you to use the S/B formula, but that changes the texture too much for me. I like a line that has a complete collection of makeup so I can offer a consistent service.
Finish - Semi-matte finish means you get some shine control and performance control, but you get some skin finish as well. While this doesn’t look like bare, amazing skin, it does have a beautiful finish.
Feeling - It will feel like you’re wearing makeup, but not like you will suffocate in it. Some clients may not like the feeling, while others won’t notice it being any different from their everyday makeup. It’s flexible and build-able in coverage.
Performance - Because if the hybrid nature, this does have the best of both world. It is tear proof, sweat proof, water resistance and has a wearability of 18+ hours, however I recommend you take your makeup off before bed ;)
Spray Quality - Since this is a much thinner silicone formula with the added water content, it sprays really well without the need to thin. However if you do need to thin, use 244, 246, or a tiny amount of !PM to thin. Clean with thinner and rinse with 99% alcohol.
This is quickly becoming my new favorite airbrush foundation! Hopefully they will expand the line to add blush, contour, highlight and shimmers!
Finish - Beautiful skin-like finish. Great for camera work and photography. Perfect for the client that wants a natural, skin finish. Works on any skin type.
Feeling - Super lightweight and nearly naked on the skin. Breathable and weightless.
Performance - Lasts all day and night with little budge. Could break down with a heavy cryer but assure them how to blot their tears lightly with tissue. As with any makeup, tap, don’t smudge.
Spray Quality - Sprays incredibly easy with no need to thin and I have never noticed any clogging or dry-tip.
Nebula by Kryolan is a new formula to me. I have yet to try the full line with Contour, Vivid and Iridescent ranges they have for the line. For my review it will be based on the complexion alone.
Finish - Semi-matte and somewhat skin like. Has a natural sheen and can be layered easily
Feeling - Feels like makeup, but not too heavy.
Performance - Performs really well due to hybrid nature of silicone and water. It can repel water well and allows to sweat through it.
Spray Quality - Since this is on the thinner side, it does perform well with low PSI machines and smaller needles. I would still recommend a .5mm needle to keep it’s flow nice and consistent. Could clog easily or spray inconsistently on small compressors.
Where to Buy:
Kett Cosmetics Hydro Trial Kits available - 30% Pro Discount Available - Free Shipping over $50
Kett Cosmetics Hydro Proof Trial Kits available - 30% Pro Discount Available - Free Shipping over $50
Camera Ready Cosmetics Trial size available - up to 40% Pro Discount Available - Free Shipping over $50
Temptu S/B Trial Kits available - 15%-30% Pro Discount Available - Free Shipping over $50
Temptu Perfect Canvas Trial Kits available - 15%-30% Pro Discount Available - Free Shipping over $50
Kryolan Nebula Trial Kits available - Pro Discount Available
Want me to add another foundation to review? Email me! firstname.lastname@example.org