Feels completely weightless
Applies and blends easily
Dries with a natural, skin-like finish
Smooth, buildable coverage
High price point
May be too rich for oily skin
Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick
We purchased Tom Ford's Traceless Foundation Stick so our writer could put it to the test. Keep reading for our full product review.
Recent runway beauty trends have forecasted a few looks that I love: colorful eyeliner, lived-in hair, and healthy, fresh-looking skin. These trends are all easy to replicate and can take your look from simple to effortlessly stunning in no time at all. Since I’ve been on an intense skincare journey, I wanted to find a product that could accentuate the progress I’ve made with my natural skin. Having heard some conversation around Tom Ford's Traceless Foundation Stick, I decided to spend my coins on it and see what it was about for myself. Would this prestige product outshine my current favorite stick foundation? Keep reading for my full review and honest thoughts below.
Best for: Normal and dry skin types.
Uses: Giving your skin a natural look with buildable coverage.
Potential allergens: Tocopheryl acetate
Byrdie Clean? Yes
About the brand: An absolute phenomenon in the fashion and beauty space, Tom Ford has been influencing the landscape of both industries for decades. In 2005, the designer, director, and creative visionary launched Tom Ford Beauty, which offers high-quality makeup, skincare, and fragrance products to bring a little luxury to your everyday life.
About My Skin: Sensitive, combination, and acne-prone
My skin and I have a turbulent relationship. Sometimes, we’re on the same page and I can try different foundation products without any breakouts or reactions. Most times, though, we have major differences, and in order to keep the peace, I keep my routine simple and I don’t make too many changes unless I’m comfortable with the ingredients. Right now, I’m using the NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer on my dark spots in Caramel and Sucre D’Orange under my eyes, and I dust a touch of Charlotte Tilbury's Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder all over my skin. This combination is simple, but it’s all I need since I work from home.
How to Apply: Swipe directly on skin and blend
Stick foundations are great because you can apply them directly onto your skin without having to do a ton of blending afterwards. When I opened Tom Ford's Traceless Foundation Stick, I swiped it directly onto my cheeks and forehead. The color may look really rich when you first apply it, but it becomes less intense once you blend it out. Its buttery texture glided across my skin easily, feeling completely lightweight and comfortable. I used a foundation brush to blend the product into my skin, using circular motions to smooth out any harsh lines.
The Results: Smooth, natural-looking skin
The first thing I noticed after applying Tom Ford's Traceless Foundation Stick is how smooth yet natural my skin looked—I definitely let out a tiny squeal of excitement. I applied enough product for medium coverage, and even with that, my skin looked fresh and the foundation was practically undetectable. My skin had a subtle matte finish while still managing to have some radiance, which is ideal for recreating the look I had in mind. I had a feeling that this foundation would be good, but I wasn’t expecting much; sometimes, products from prestige brands do a decent job, but they’re not always impressive or innovative enough to justify the cost. Overall, Tom Ford’s Traceless Foundation Stick really impressed me; it applies like a dream and the buttery texture made my skin look supple and smooth. Its packaging makes it really easy to add extra coverage in the areas you need it, too: just take a fluffy blending brush, press it onto the foundation, and strategically blend it into any areas you'd prefer to even out further.
While I’ve had nothing but great things to say so far, I do have one critique: I found the finish to be a little too natural for my oily T-zone without a matte primer underneath. After several hours of wear without a primer, I didn’t experience any patchiness or an application that faded, but I did need to touch up my forehead and nose with translucent powder a few times throughout the day. If you have oily skin, you may have a similar experience, so I definitely recommend using a primer of your choice to minimize the shine.
The Value: Pretty expensive
While Tom Ford’s Traceless Foundation Stick is drool-worthy, it’s expensive and not a product I would purchase on a regular basis. Since I only wear foundation on nights out to begin with, I wouldn’t buy this foundation because it would expire before I could even use it all. Additionally, you get just 0.5 oz. for $88; it’s much more expensive than the products that I normally spend money on. That said, this is a product that you may want to purchase if you want to indulge in a little bit of luxury, especially if you wear foundation more regularly than I do. The result is truly gorgeous, and if you’re looking for something that works—regardless of the price—the Traceless Foundation Stick will give you what you’re looking for.
Similar Products: You've got options
Maybelline New York Fit Me Shine-Free and Balance Stick Foundation: A product that’s pretty much on the opposite end of the cost spectrum, Maybelline's Fit Me Shine-Free and Balance Stick Foundation ($9) is a super accessible product for anyone that’s looking for a stick foundation that works without breaking the bank. A buildable gel formula with a soft matte finish, this product will even your appearance quickly and control oil for at least 10 hours.
Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick: One of my personal favorite foundations, this Bobbi Brown foundation stick ($50) is a great option if you’re looking for the ease and convenience of a stick foundation that’s more affordable. Its weightless feel and buildable formula will give you radiant, soft matte skin, and the minimal effort you put in will pay off for hours.
Merit Beauty The Minimalist Perfecting Complexion Stick: A fairly young brand, Merit has positioned itself as one of the go-to brands for minimalist beauty. Each product is stellar, and the Minimalist Perfecting Complexion Stick ($38) is no different. With its light-to-medium coverage, this stick is neither a foundation or concealer, but works as both and is suitable for all skin types. If you want to focus on specific areas of your skin or you love a natural look, this clean, vegan stick is worth checking out.
Tom Ford's Traceless Stick Foundation will even out your complexion and give your skin a healthy and hydrated appearance while still managing to have a velvety matte finish. But although the results are fabulous, it’s an expensive product. That being said, if you’re not concerned about the price and just want a product that works, this foundation is worth buying.
- Product Name Traceless Foundation Stick
- Product Brand Tom Ford
- Price $88
- Weight 0.5 oz.
- Full Ingredient List Glyceryl Triacetyl Ricinoleate, Octyldodecanol, Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladipate-2, Polyethylene, Kaolin, Ozokerite, Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Barium Sulfate, Polygonum Cuspidatum Root Extract, Morinda Citrifolia Fruit Extract, Caffeine, Bisabolol, Stearyl Glycyrrhetinate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Butylene Glycol, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, [+/- Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Iron Oxides (Ci 77491, Ci 77492, Ci 77499), Mica.