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I first heard about this foundation 3 years ago and it received rave reviews from beauty bloggers. The 5 shades claim to cover all olive skin tones. My first thoughts were dismissive. How can you cater for all olives with just 5 shades? I thought I’d wait out the initial new product honeymoon period before I looked into it further. Recently I found out that a well respected beauty blogger (an early lover of the foundation) is still loving it and as far as I know, she is still using the foundation 3 years on.

EX1 Invisiwear


Vital statistics

Price: EX1: £10.50 for 30ml| MAC comparative: £21.50

Shades:  5

Stockists: Beauty Mart in Harvey Nichols (Knightsbridge, London), Beauty Mart at Box Park (Shoreditch, London), Beauty Mart at Westfield (White City, London), Guru Makeup Emporium (High Street Kensington, London), Topshop Oxford Circus (London).
Online: HQ Hair, Look Fantastic, Beauty Expert


EX1 Invisiwear is a medium to full coverage foundation, but it can be effectively sheered down for light cover also. It dries to a semi-matte finish and so doesn’t always need setting with powder. I like a dewy finish and so I apply with sponge dampened with setting spray. This gives a dewy finish but also sets the foundation in one step, removing the need for powdering.

The shade guide is surprisingly good. It benchmarks EX1 with comparable MAC shades.
My shade is F300 which equates roughly to MAC NC37-40 (a wide range in itself).

Here it is on my skin in natural light.

If you’re an olive toned person, you’ll be sure to find a better match in EX1 than you will in MAC. Sceptical? Try it for yourself by popping in to one of the London stores above. Unfortunately there aren’t yet many stores outside of London that stock it so you’ll have to follow the shade guide online.