Finding The Right Shade Of Foundation



Have you ever noticed a woman whose foundation makes her face look orange? It looks like she is wearing a mask of makeup and her face appears to be drastically darker than her neck and the rest of her body. In high school, we used to call these girls cake faces. I am always tempted to politely say something, because they must not be aware of what they look like. But how do you approach a stranger or someone you are not that friendly with, without embarrassing or hurting their feelings? Instead of taking that risk, I wanted to share my tips on picking out the right shade of foundation for your skin tone.

  • First, you have to decide what type of skin you have – does your face tend to be dry, oily or a combination (normal)?
  • Once you have determined what type of skin you have, you now want to do some research on which brand of makeup will best suit you. If you tend to have occasional breakouts like I do, look for a foundation that is oil-free and non-comedogenic. If your skin is dry or aged, I recommend looking for a foundation that is made specifically for dry skin, like those offered by Estee Lauder. That way, your skin will be hydrated and conceal any wrinkles.
  • Before you go shopping, look at yourself in the mirror without any products on. This is so that you can give yourself an idea of what your natural shade is. Another good indicator is by looking at the shade of your neck and hands. You don’t want a shade that will make you paler or tanner; you want the exact shade of your skin. Foundation is used to give yourself a clean canvas to work with before applying any makeup.
  • If you are shopping at a drug store, it may be slightly harder to find the right shade of foundation since you aren’t able to test the product before you buy it. Just remember to save your receipt in case. Otherwise, department stores and places like Ulta and Sephora have an abundance of testers and are the best places to find your perfect match. The women who work at the cosmetic counters may seem intimidating at first, but I can assure they are not. I used to work in cosmetics myself and it is our job to assist and educate you. Don’t be shy!
  • You can ask for suggestions or test the shades on your own. Make sure you look for a shade that best matches your skin. Sometimes a color looks much different in the bottle than it does on your face. If you’re unsure, ask for a few samples so that you can take them home and test them in different lighting.
  • Overall, the point of foundation is to improve your appearance and to make you feel confident. If you want to appear tanner, the biggest mistake you can do is to buy a foundation that is too dark. Purchase a foundation that is closest to your skin color, and gradually apply a bronzer to your cheekbones, forehead and décolleté afterwards. You want your natural beauty to appear as much as possible. Less is always more!

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