Australis Match Maker Shade Adjusting Drops in Lightening - review and swatches


I've almost finished these and while I do have a back-up for them, I wanted to review them today because I finally got my swatch-photos done yesterday and I'm currently panning them so they're definitely front of mind!

Indeed, I've been panning them for three months now and they've had daily use since then - I've tried them every which way and with many different foundations and concealers - so best I post on them now, while I remember everything.

Long story short, I like them and I went ahead and bought a back-up last time Australis was half-price at Priceline, so that should tell you something about how useful I think they are.

Having said this, I don't think they're perfect and I would like to see Australis expand its range in future. Ie, it would be a lot more useful if these were also available in eg pale yellow, pale pink and pale beige - just so they don't run the risk of turning your bases ashy and also so that those of us with strong undertones in our skin (yellow for me) have the option to not only lighten a base, but also pull it closer to their own undertone.

Still, they're good and I recommend them. More on that below.

Australis claims/product details:

  • Transform a ‘nearly right’ foundation into ‘Mr Right’ to create your perfect foundation match!
  • No more stressing over finding your perfect foundation shade
  • To use: simply add as many drops as required to your foundation to alter the shade; mix well, then apply to your face or décolletage as normal
  • RRP $20.95 AUD for 18ml, but do shop around (I've only ever bought mine at half-price)

A quick note on the packaging because it's not great. I don't know whether I got a bad one, but my dropper doesn't work. That is, I squeeze the top to try to get product into the dropper but it doesn't extract any from the bottle.

Also, the product is so thick that it completely coats the dropper (see above), which is a recipe for mess. For ages I was getting too much on the outside of the dropper when I removed it from the bottle, so I would have to let it drip off considerably before dispensing it. Also, it's hard to get that product-coated dropper back into the bottle without touching the sides and therefore creating mess.

Rant over. Now for swatches.

Below I've done a swatch of the whitening drops, followed by one of my Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser Oil Free in Sand, and then I've done two blobs of those products mixed in varying proportions (direct sunlight):

And indirect sunlight:


Ok, so you can see from the swatches that this product definitely works, and I have been able to use it even though it's not quite perfect.

Why isn't it perfect? First, as mentioned above, it would be better if it came in pale yellow, pale pink, pale beige etc so you could swing the undertone if needed. This would also prevent some products from looking ashy on the skin, which has happened to me with a couple of products if I've needed to use more of the whitening drops because the base was more than one shade too dark for me.

Second, I would like to see these being even more concentrated. Yes they do whiten well, but I need to use a few drops even when my foundation is only a shade too dark. If they were more concentrated, that would help with the above issue and also the below one.

Third, if you need to add too many drops, this changes how my foundation looks on the skin. Not only do the drops make the coverage too strong and also make the consistency too oily and paint-like, but they also make it sit in pores something chronic. So the less you need to add of these, the better.

Fourth, the packaging. I've already complained about that above, but I would like to see the packaging improved.

Otherwise I think these are good. They absolutely work and they've helped remove the need for me to buy one foundation or tinted moisturiser in summer and winter shades. Now I just buy my summer shade, and add these when it's winter and my base is too dark.

If I don't need to add too many drops, they don't upset the formula and my base will still perform just as well and also look just as good on the skin. But as mentioned above, it's when I need to add too many that I can get myself into hot water.

Overall I think these are good and I do recommend them. They work, and while they're not without issue, most whitening drops are far too expensive so this is currently the best and cheapest option that's widely available in Australia. This is especially true because I've been able to buy both my bottles at half-price.


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