The Ordinary Serum Foundation Review

That moment when you find a shop that actually sells The Ordinary in store.

When I went back home for a few days last month I came across a nice little selection of The Ordinary in Fenwick, York. Having already picked up The Retinol (review coming soon) I thought I would add to my collection. 

Today I’m going to be talking about the Serum Foundation, as I haven’t started the moisturiser yet.

Colour range

I get a good vibe about a company’s colour range when I’m not the palest shade. They also quite clearly cater for different undertones. Another tick. After a couple of tries on the back of my hand (I know that’s where you shouldn’t match your foundation to but I had make up on) I settled on 1.1N. I’m really happy with the colour match on this. To say it’s supposed to have neutral undertones it looks yellow when initially applied. 

However once rubbed in, it’s a good match. I think if it didn’t have that slight yellow colour to it, it might make me look washed out.


This is very runny. Exactly what you’d expect from a serum foundation. I purchased this as a quick foundation option for days when my skin doesn’t need a full face of foundation therefore I use my fingers to apply. One pump does my whole face nicely. I do a second, smaller amount just to build a little extra coverage where I need it around some of my old acne areas.

After this I like to buff it into my skin a little with a Tarte brush that came with my foundation stick. I feel like until this point, it’s just sat on my skin and I worry about wearability. Some days if I’m feeling like I need a little extra coverage I touch up areas with my L’Oreal Foundation Stick, again buffing in with the same brush. In terms of quick application, it fits the bill and cuts down my total make up time each morning I use it.

The finish is semi-matte and is exactly the kind of finish I prefer. Not too cakey looking, but not too shiny (I’ve got oily skin, so I need no help on that front). The coverage is definitely light, and doesn’t build up at all really. I can pretty much only wear this on good skin days.


As expected, this doesn’t last all day. It gets to around 3pm if I’m wearing this at work and I can see signs of wear. Particularly in my oily areas. While this doesn’t settle into lines, like heavier foundation does, it does start to let the oil through and break up throughout the day. Unlike heavier foundation. Despite seeing the signs of it breaking up, it can just last a work day without ending up looking truly terrible. I do work in a nicely air conditioned office though so if you work somewhere that isn’t nicely chilled all day you may find it doesn’t quite last for you. Particularly if you are prone to oily skin.

Overall thoughts

I wanted a light coverage foundation, that I can wear on good skin days that was quick to apply. I’ve got that in this foundation. It’s not perfect, but for an absolute bargain at £5.70 I’m really impressed. The colour range is good, the finish is nice, and I can just about get a day out of this. I won’t wear this every single day, but for a quick make up day, this will be my go-to. 

Have you tried this or the other The Ordinary Foundation? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!