Benefit The Big Easy Liquid To Powder SPF 35 Foundation Review & Swatches

I remember swatching Benefit The Big Easy on the back of my hand in store and was impressed by the coverage and finish. I held off on purchasing it, though, because I knew it was only a matter of time before Benefit makes a mini version of it. And soon enough, last week I saw it listed as one of the Sephora 100 point perks! So of course, I snatched it right away. Now that I have used up the whole tube, I am here to report that The Big Easy is generally a good product, only under certain conditions.

Benefit The Big Easy
Benefit The Big Easy
Benefit The Big Easy
Benefit The Big Easy

The mini size that I have is in shade 03 Light/Medium. There are 6 shades available and while 03 seems to almost match my current skin, I have a feeling the perfect match for me would be between 03 and 04. This is a pretty limited range for a foundation product if you ask me. It would be nice to see Benefit extend the shade selection a little in the future. :)

Benefit The Big Easy
Benefit The Big Easy

Marketed as a “multibalancing complexion perfector with broad-spectrum SPF 35 sunscreen“, The Big Easy is basically a foundation with SPF. SPF 35 is quite high but I didn't detect any sunscreen scent, or any scent at all. I'd say it has a light to medium coverage. It covers pores and redness really well and I really like it for that. However, it will not cover active blemishes or serious dark spots.

To visualize the texture of The Big Easy, imagine mixing your foundation with sunscreen, then add powder. The product goes on a little thick and sets really fast so I recommend applying it in sections. I tried different application methods and found fingers to be the best. The warmth from fingers will help the product glide on and blend easier. Setting is not necessary because the product dries down to a very matte, and very powdery finish.

And here come the conditions.

  1. The product has good coverage, but it is not easily blendable. Layering makes my skin look “thick” and cakey.
  2. Since it gives a very powdery finish, your skin has to be extremely well moisturized prior to application. Without a good skin to begin with, the product will settle into pores, cake on dry patches and make your skin look flaky and blotchy.
  3. If you have extremely dry skin, this is probably not the product for you. It will only accentuate the dryness even more. If you are oily or combo? This may turn out to be a fantastic product for you because it controls oil like mad. It literally keeps excess oil at bay all day for me.
  4. Since the formula is not really buildable without looking too powdery, you will need help from a concealer to cover problem areas. So I think a decent skin is preferred for this product.
Benefit The Big Easy
Benefit The Big Easy

The Big Easy is oil-free and non-comedogenic. Throughout the week that I've been using it, I experienced zero breakout, so the claim is true. Even though it is jam packed with silicone and derivatives, it didn't bother my skin at all, which I am kind of surprised (in a good way of course).

The product also claims to “self-adjust to your exact shade to even out skin tone“. Usually I cough when I hear that but they are right! 03 definitely goes on a wee bit pasty on me but if I wait for about 10-15 minutes, it actually adjusts and blends in with my skin! It is also obvious that it makes my overall complexion look better, more even, and smooth (see before and after photos below).

Benefit The Big Easy in 03 Light/Medium; unblended (L) and blended (R)
Benefit The Big Easy in 03 Light/Medium; unblended (L) and blended (R)
Benefit The Big Easy; L-R: 01 Fair, 02 Light, 03 Light/Medium, 04 Medium, 05 Beige, and 06 Deep Beige
Benefit The Big Easy; L-R: 01 Fair, 02 Light, 03 Light/Medium, 04 Medium, 05 Beige, and 06 Deep Beige

Before and After

Wearing Benefit The Big Easy (R)
Wearing Benefit The Big Easy (R)

Fresh-faced makeup look

Wearing Benefit The Big Easy and a little bit of makeup!
Wearing Benefit The Big Easy and a little bit of makeup!

I can see why it is getting such mixed reviews. It's not a product that will work from the get-go. While the shade can be forgiving, your skin has to be just right, and the amount to use has to also be right. Right now my skin is dry and The Big Easy is a little too much work than I can afford at the moment. I'm not exactly a fan of the powdery finish, either, so it is hard for me to use this product on a day to day basis. Come Summer, though, when my skin gets oily, I might try it again and who knows? It might work much better then. :)

Purchase

US$38 at SephoraBirchboxBenefit

฿1,600 at Sephora Thailand

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13 Comments

  • very interesting product i have extremely oily skin and now Thailand is seriously but i guess it will accentuate my acne spot treatment that all are flaky .

    the texture really do look like a bb cream that jam with silicone as you said hahaha .

    • I think it will really emphasize dry spots even more, so I’d get a sample to try first or wait until your skin returns to its good condition. :)

      Yeah, actually it does feel like a BB cream!

  • You’re lucky it works for you! I also got the 100-pt mini but I was really disappointed, just because of my own skin. I’ll save it for summer too, maybe my skin will be less dry then!

    • It takes a bit of work to make it work. I knew you’d get the mini too and would not like it, haha. Let’s hope it will work better for us in Summer!

  • Hey Jaa, thanks so much for the review! While it sounds like a great product for oilier skin, I’m not sure about the hard to blend part. I might have to look around and swatch this to see how it works on my skin. For the moment, it looks like it’s most probably going to look too powdery on my cheeks.

    • It’s really matte and powdery, Sunny. I’m not a big fan of foundation with powdery finish in general so I probably won’t get to use it much. But it sure does make your skin look SUPER smooth! :D

  • Thanks for the super detailed review :-) I think (as a madly dry person who likes total sheer weightlessness to her foundations) that I’d probably give this one a miss, but it sounds hopeful for those who struggle with oiliness! I definitely agree that they need to extend their shade range…six is pretty skimpy…

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