TSABD Edit: A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments (Medium/Dark) Review, Swatches & Demo

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Read ALL about my review process including how I take swatches, photos, and more here.

apdg foundation dark skin

I was SO excited to finally try the A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments. The brand offers over 30 complimentary nude shades for special FX, theatre, dance, body art, makeup artists, tattoo coverup, and more. They have SO MANY SHADES for darker skin tones and when I say so many shades, it’s possible that in the decades I’ve been around makeup, I may have NEVER seen such an extensive range for darker skin tones. They have SHADES FOR DAYS, ya’ll. Because it’s not as easy to figure out your shade from their website, it’s worth the time and money to order a sample pack to help you decide at home.

Which is what I did. I bought the Medium/Dark sample pack after stalking their site for a bit (the sample packs tend to sell out) and patiently waited for my package to arrive. I wanted to also buy the Medium and Dark packs to swatch for you guys, but both were sold out. Even having the sample pack it can still be quite a task in finding your shade (see the quick shade selection video below) because there is no undertone descriptions and when in the bottle many of the shades can look very similar. So you’re basically trying out shade after shade to see if it matches. It’s also important to wait until the product dries down before making an assessment because the shade looks different wet vs dried down.

apdg longwear liquid pigment medium dark 2

Ultimately, shade CC18 wound up being an amazing match for me. I had a few close matches, but CC18 made my skin look the most amazing without being too warm or too cool (I have neutral undertones but sometimes I can wear foundations that run a teeny bit red, but not too red). I do like that there are so many options that vary by undertone because as I mentioned in my Are You Wearing the Wrong Foundation video as well as my Fenty Beauty Foundation review, our undertones can change when we tan during some parts of the year (for me, I can get very red in undertone when I’m really tanned). I also think those with hard to match undertones may find that A.P.D.G. has a shade match—you just have to find it. I do hope they will update the descriptions on their site one day to include undertone descriptions.

A.P.D.G. Shade Selection Video:

So I wound up getting this video by “accident”…lol. I was filming to a demo but this was my first time working with the shades so I was trying to find a match right on set and decided to try out a few shades. I didn’t yet know that the shades need to dry down a bit so I missed that shade CC18 was my shade. I wound up doing another demo later in this post with shade CC18.

(video has no volume so feel free to watch from almost anywhere)

APDG Foundation Shade Trial from Danielle Gray on Vimeo.

A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigment Official Description:

apdg medium dark sampler pack 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

A longwear, liquid pigment with built in color correctors, primer and HD photo finish ingredients.

What it does:

This all-in-one, longwear liquid pigment provides buildable, medium coverage that dries to a soft matte, photo finished look thats silky to the touch. Not only is this product water, sebum, sweat and transfer resistant but it also has built in primer and color correctors.


When applying pigments to the face and body, use a damp makeup sponge or beauty blender to apply to clean, dry skin. Allow to air dry before applying another layer. When applying pigments to the lips, make sure lips are moisturized before use. Apply one layer and let air dry. If needed, apply a second coat and air dry. Once dried, pigments slightly darken.


*Fragrance Free

*Oil Free

*Paraben Free

*Cruelty Free

Screen Shot 2017-10-31 at 2.29.39 PM

So this foundation is going to give you a skin-like natural matte finish. I’d say it’s a medium buildable coverage, but if you’re going to build it up (i.e. if you need more coverage in one area), you should definitely follow the brand’s directions and wait for the pigment to dry before adding another layer. Outside of any tricks, this is not going to be a foundation for a “beat” look. But you can manipulate it with other products to give yourself more options (i.e. mix it with a moisturizer to make a tinted moisturizer; mix with luminizer to give it a glowy look; add a drop of a face oil to give a dewy finish, etc.).

It’s very important that you use a DAMP makeup sponge or beautyblender to apply the foundation. The brand suggests this in the directions. I find that if you don’t, it can be hard to blend the foundation without it looking streaky and that could have been more apparent for me since I’m working with the little sample jars which come with wand applicators.

Speaking of the sample jars, at first I didn’t think I’d have enough product to be able to fully assess the A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments, but I’ve actually been able to have enough to figure out my shade and then test that shade about four times and there’s still product left. I did also find that the pigments separated a few times (see picture below)—not sure if this is something only the sample packs do, but I was able to shake it up and get the product to blend again.

apdg longwear liquid pigments separated

I really like this foundation so far. I’ve tested it out four times under different settings (different moisturizers, set with/without powder, etc.) and it’s durable. I wouldn’t say it was completely transfer proof for me (I don’t think any foundation is—you just have to be more cognizant of the fact you have makeup on and try not to touch your face and if you do, wash your hands immediately; I also hug on angles and try not to touch anything after touching my face so I don’t get makeup on it). I have oily skin and found the foundation worked best for me when set with powder. If you have a drier skin type, you might be able to get away without setting it with powder or only setting in certain areas like your T-zone. Of course as with any foundation, you want to make sure you’re using the right moisturizer for your skin type and the climate where you live. Read more about that here.

You also want to make sure you remove this foundation properly. The brand suggests using a silicone-based makeup remover to take it off. I don’t typically use a silicone-based makeup remover in my regular routine (I like using cleansing oils which didn’t feel as effective to get this foundation off) but because I am a beauty blogger and tend to have more products than the average person (especially since brands send me things) and I happened to have Clinique Take the Day Off makeup remover (although the one for eyes and lips) and that worked better to take the foundation off than my normal removers. You can google around (or check ingredients) for more examples of silicon-based makeup removers.

I was contemplating buying my shade in a full size (they come in different sizes) but my shade is sold out and I also think the brand may be having some sort of restock stall. I personally give smaller brands like this a pass when it comes to restocks because I do understand how difficult the operations end can be for a smaller company. I do wish they would be a bit more transparent with whatever is going on. They haven’t posted to their Instagram account since September 24th and there are comments from people saying they hadn’t received their orders yet. The account seems to be replying to some comments though which is good, I just wish there was some general communication about restocks and such. All of the sampler packs are currently sold out.

A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments Video Demo: (Shade CC18)

(there’s no sound on this so feel free to watch from almost anywhere)

APDG Foundation Demo from Danielle Gray on Vimeo.

apdg longwear liquid pigments swatches on dark skin shades cc18 cc19 cc20 cc21 cc22 cc23 cc24 cc25 WET

apdg foundation shades 18 19 20 21 swatches on dark skin wet

apdg foundation swatches on dark skin 22 23 24 25 wet

apdg foundation sampler medium dark swatches on dark skin

apdg foundation swatches on dark skin DRY

apdg foundation swatches on dark skin dry 2

See more Foundation swatches and reviews here

Bottom line: A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments have an amazing range for darker skin tones (I counted about 27 shades for darker skin. TWENTY SEVEN!!!) and I love the product. If you love a skin-like finish that is buildable, you’ll love this foundation as well. You can manipulate the finish like I mentioned above if you want to have a little more flexibility with the product.

It can be a bit of a challenge figuring out your shade since there aren’t undertone descriptions on the site so I would definitely get a sampler pack first. Only problem with that is the sampler packs tend to sell out so it could take some time to finally try it all. This all sounds like growing pains for the brand so I’m still rooting for them and hoping they’ll be able to restock soon. Hopefully they’ll eventually wind up in some retail locations as well.

Price and where to buy: Sampler packs (when available) are $10 each. The full size foundations come in different sizes: 0.33 fl oz for $18; 1 fl oz for $24; 2 fl oz for $34 (for comparison, MAC’s popular Studio Fix Fluid Foundation is $29 for 1 fl oz) at apdg.co.

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About Danielle

A former finance girl, Danielle is a New York City based freelance writer and fashion and beauty expert. She's a Hofstra University and Fashion Institute of Technology grad with an obsession with fashion and beauty which she loves to tell you all about every weekday on her award-winning blog. Think of her as your style and beauty entourage all wrapped up into one bubbly brown package. Danielle's work and expertise can be found in print and across the web in Cosmopolitan for Latinas, Allure.com, and more! She's also appeared as an on-air style and beauty expert on The Real, CBS New York's "The Couch" and WPIX11's Savvy Shopper segment.

4 Responses to TSABD Edit: A.P.D.G. Longwear Liquid Pigments (Medium/Dark) Review, Swatches & Demo

  1. Chi says:

    That looks great on you!

  2. ECfromDC says:

    I JUST ordered the ‘Medium’ sampler pack and your review makes me feel confident that my shade is in that one. I don’t get mine for another like 7-8 days at most (ordered 2 days ago and it’s still processing and that can take up to 1 wk by itself)
    I really hope this brand gets the popularity it deserves.
    Surprised more black (and brown) beauty bloggers/yt’ers etc haven’t reviewed this line.

    • Danielle says:

      Heyyyy Ebony!!!

      I hope you have a shade match! Thanks to your comment I decided to check and see if they had the dark set so I can swatch it. I was able to order it so hopefully it ships soon :)

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