Having found that I could happily dilute water based makeup, I did some research at my local shops to see what was available that maybe could be airbrushed without alteration.
I found some Gosh Foundation Drops. They seemed pretty thin and my hopes were raised. I emailed Gosh to ask if they were silicone or oil based - looking at the label they looked to me to be silicone but I wanted confirmation.
DIMETHICONE is the 4th ingredient
ARGANIA SPINOSA KERNEL OIL is only at number 10...
The reply was that they are OIL based, something that the ingredient list does not seem to hold up.
I bought some and tried airbrushing with them, only to find they gum up the brush and sputter rather than spray, so at the very least, they need thinning. However, attempts to clean it out with oil (which if oil based should work) were unsuccessful and it took ages to get the remains out of my airbrush!
This leads me to suspect that I am right and it is Silicone based instead. Which is a problem, since I can't find any Silicone airbrush cleaner or makeup thinner to dilute it with. Hmm.
However, if you want to apply it in the traditional way, it works fine with a beauty blender or dabbed on with fingers and buffed in with a brush. It gives a great finish and cover can be built up if that is your preference.
Looking at the internet once again, I found MAC have a service where you can ask (by various means) a MUA questions about products, application and so on.
I asked if any of their makeup could be used in an airbrush, this is the reply, you may find it interesting.
The reply was very thorough and speedy, I was impressed with their level of service!
Thank you for your inquiry. I am happy to help!
You can by all means use our Studio Waterweight and Face & Body Foundations for airbrushing. If you are finding these formulas to be too thick, I suggest diluting them with our Airbrush Cleanser for smoother delivery.
Our skin conditioning Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation is virtually weightless with a 'serum-meets-water' feel and 8 hours of long wear. It delivers sheer to medium buildable coverage, and a natural satin finish. The ultra-fluid formula is so lightweight that there is no appearance of texture on the skin while silica and mica help optically blur skin imperfections.
For flawless-looking skin, apply Mineralize Timecheck Lotion to your face. Use the 196 Brush to apply Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation to create an even, perfected finish.
MAC Studio Face and Body Foundation provides ultra-natural, lightweight coverage that blends smoothly and leaves your skin with a long-lasting, water-resistant finish. For a flawless finish, apply with MAC #109 Small Contour Brush in firm, circular motions. Choose one of our "C" shades if your skin has golden undertones, and a shade in the "N" category if your skin has rosy undertones.
Ultimately, however, MAC Micronized Airbrush Formula is deveoped for use in the airbrush system. It is a cutting edge silicone-based Airbrush Formula for face and body developed expressly for Makeup Artists working in High Definition TV, film and beauty. It comes in a comprehensive range of skin tones, neutrals, primary/secondary and skin adjuster shades. This fluid, highly pigmented formula can be poured directly into the airbrush gun or diluted with the cleanser.
MAC Airbrush Cleanser goes beyond cleaning the Airbrush Gun. Through regular use, it can extend the life of your Airbrush Gun. Airbrush Cleanser can be mixed into MAC Micronized Airbrush Formula to sheer down the formula or alter the coverage.
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A much more involved answer than I had expected.
Since I live in Spain and have no MAC Pro stores to hand, although I may find the idea of getting that cleanser or even some airbrush makeup tempting, it's going to be hard to get hold of without paying a lot of postage no doubt. I'll have to keep looking.
So, for those of you with a MAC store handy, there may be some promising solutions, if you wish to use an airbrush without being bound to specific brands.
BTW, this blog is NOT sponsored in any shape or form.