Picking up the right shade of foundation is a must for a flawless looking skin. But with the plethora of products available in the market, the choice can be a difficult one. Color is just a part of the problem. From tinted moisturizers, powders, etc. there are endless varieties available in the market. We all want to use a foundation, which give us a seemingly natural perfection without looking like we are wearing a mask or a wrong shade. Don’t worry; we have got you covered with this simple five- step match to find your perfect foundation.
Problem: What your undertone?
Solution: Instead of choosing a foundation based on how light or dark are you, you should choose one based on your undertones. We are either neutral, cool or warm.
- Cool Undertone: If you are cool, the veins on your inner wrist would appear blue. You tend to turn a flushed pink color in the sun and should be looking for shades that have rosier or redder base.
- Warm Undertone: If you are warm, the veins on your wrist would appear green and you tan bronze easily in the sun. Look for a foundation which has a golden, honey, chestnut or yellow base.
- Neutral Undertone: You are the lucky ones who have an equal number of blue and green veins and can pull of any shade of foundation, lipstick and eyeshadow.
Problem: Stick, Cream, Liquid, Powder- what’s the right one for me?
Solution: Your skin will tell you your best match.
According to Skin Type
- Dry Skin:
If you have a dry skin, choose a stick, liquid or a hydrating powder foundation. While liquids and sticks have a creamy texture, hydrating powders have ingredients to moisturize your skin and provide more coverage. Look for a ‘hydrating’, ‘moisture-rich’ foundation.
- Oily Skin
For those with oily skin, choose a powder or an oil-free liquid foundation. These type of foundations have powders that help you get rid of the excess oil leaving you with a matt and smooth finish. Look for words like ‘oil-free, ‘oil-control or’ mattifying’ on the bottle. You can also opt for mineral make up as the dry particles therein would absorb the excess moisture.
However if you are prone to frequent breakouts, you should use a foundation with salicylic acid, which dries up the oil producing glands that cause pimples.
- Combination skin
Ideally people with combination skin should opt for a powder-based foundation, which allows an even finish (apply more in oily areas and less where it’s not needed) instead of cream based liquid or stick foundations, which would leave visible lines.
If you are just starting off with makeup, we would suggest you to start off with a powder foundation, as it’s the easiest to apply and blends more easily than liquid or stick foundations. If not, the next best option is a cream foundation as it can easily be applied using a sponge.
Problem: How to find the best shade?
Solution: The ideal foundation shade will disappear onto your skin. It doesn’t settle into fine lines or wrinkles nor does it highlights pores. It should look as if you aren’t wearing anything at all.
- Try it First
While, we don’t suggest you to try every makeup product before buying, a foundation is one, which should ALWAYS be tried on first. It’s not possible to judge a foundation from the bottle.
- Testing the Shades
While trying foundation shades for yourself, it’s best to show up at a makeup counter with a fresh face. You can wear eye makeup and lipstick but you shouldn’t be wearing any foundation. Moisturizer is okay though.
The best foundation for you is the one which disappears on your face. You can start looking for some by applying a stroke of three different shades on your jawline. Contrary to the popular belief, the inner wrist isn’t the best place to try your foundation.
- Check under natural light
Once you think you have found a match, check it out under natural light. If not, borrow a hand mirror to look at it closely. If you are buying a foundation from a drugstore where testers aren’t available, you can hold the bottles close to your neck to find your favorite shade instead of referring to the swatches on display.
Problem: Do you want Light, Medium or Heavy Coverage?
Solution: Depends on skin type and season.
- Depending on season
Ideally you should choose a lighter coverage foundation for summers to prevent makeup meltdown and a creamier heavier for winters.
- Skin Type
If you have a good skin with a few reddish areas, consider a light coverage based foundation. Tinted moisturizers would work great for you.
However if you have an uneven skin tone, blemishes; you should opt for a foundation with medium coverage. Medium coverage foundations can be built up to create a heavier coverage if required.
Problem: SPF or No SPF?
Solution: It doesn’t matter. Wear a sunscreen according to your skin type.
These days, foundations come with SPF, however the amount is typically very low; SPF 15 or so. This isn’t enough to protect you and hence you should always wear an SPF of at least 40 under the foundation.