I have always been a fan of YSL products, especially their foundations. So it’s no surprise when they released their Fusion Ink formula that I was instantly in love. It had everything I was looking for, great coverage for how light it felt, a smooth velvety finish, and didn’t smell of alcohol considering how fluid it was. Needless to say, I was pretty upset when I ran out of it. Though still having a few other foundations in rotation, I just couldn’t justify the cost of replacing it, and the hunt for a drugstore dupe was on. Then I stumbled across the Maybelline Dream Wonder foundation at Ulta.
Both have similar applicators, while the Fusion Ink one is a little more flat and has a cut out, I didn’t notice a real difference in precision or amount of product available on the wand. Then again I mostly just wipe the wand on my damp beauty blender and apply it that way. If you’re applying it to the back of your hand, or directly to a brush you may have different experiences.
One of the things I adore about YSL is that they cater to the variations in undertones. Depending on the time of year (or how recently I’ve been somewhere sunny…), I vary from a BR40 to a BR50 in YSL shades. Sephora also makes it really easy to find your perfect match with their Skin IQ tool. This is not so readily available with drugstore shades, though I do like that Ulta had these sectioned off into Warm/Cool/Neutral tones. I ended up getting the Dream Wonder in Creamy Natural, unfortunately it has more yellow undertones than the Fusion Ink (Photo shows BR40 in Fusion Ink on the left, and Dream Wonder on the right).
However, the difference in undertones wasn’t as noticeable once blended in. Dream Wonder is more light coverage and is better for evening out your face overall, where as Fusion Ink seems to be more light/medium and a little more buildable, therefore more important to get a closer match.
Once blended in, they both dry quickly and have a really nice velvety feel to them. Though I still set both with powder, I probably didn’t have to. Dream Wonder is a little more fluidy than the Fusion Ink, and smells more of alcohol. Surprisingly, the Fusion Ink actually has a quite pleasant and mild floral scent to it. Both seem to stick to dry patches a bit, so I definitely recommend using a primer before hand, even if it’s just on the spots you’ll need it. Staying power between the two also seems about the same and will get me through most of the day without touch ups.
Looking at the amount of product per cost that you get, Maybelline wins. Maybelline Dream Wonder has .67 fl oz for under $10, where the YSL Fusion Ink rings in at $60 for .84 fl oz.
Overall verdict, while the Fusion Ink is slightly better quality wise, if you’re price conscious at all I think the Dream Wonder is your best bet.