I can’t tell you how many times a day I walk down the street and observe women fall victim to what I like to call “foundation faux pas.” This post aims to rectify the most commonly made mistakes when applying foundation and to alert those who might unknowingly commit these crimes against foundation. I’ll break it down to the 5 most major offenses women tend to make while putting on foundation:
1. Choosing the wrong foundation color
For some reason women are under the misconception that the back of their hands and wrists are the same color as their faces. Wrong! Testing foundation colors any place other than the jawline is a bad idea. The ideal way to choose the right shade for your skin tone is by streaking the jawline with several shades, going outside into a natural light and seeing which color matches best. This doesn’t necessarily hold true if you’re looking for coverage on areas other than your face. It’s also important to keep in mind that as the seasons change, so does the color of your skin. This is a fact many women decide to overlook. Come winter you don’t want to look like Snooki and in summer you don’t want to look like Edward Cullen (minus the sparkles, hopefully). So make the necessary adjustments to your shade of foundation each season.
2. Forgetting to blend
This is a pet peeve of mine: ladies who go out in public wearing foundation that looks like a mask. Instances in which there is a noticeable contrast in color between the face and neck are not flattering. Blending foundation outwards from the nose is key. You want a flawless look – not a fugly look – right? So, using either your fingers, brush or BeautyBlender (my personal favorite), blend foundation into skin as if it were a canvas. Create a base that provides a uniform look and a natural feel.
3. Not moisturizing beforehand
This step is so important. If you’re using a tinted moisturizer it’s not always necessary; otherwise, foundation will cling to skin in an unflattering way. This is especially true in the winter months when skin can get more flaky. This step ensures a softer look. Even if you have oily skin, moisturizer (preferably with sunblock) is still your best friend.
4. Selecting the wrong formula for your skin type
Everyone’s skin is unique. However, most skin falls into certain product categories. For example, normal and combination skin is best suited for a cream foundation. This type of foundation provides medium/full coverage and helps with uneven pigmentation and blemishes. A liquid foundation is ideal for dry and/or mature skin. Pressed powder foundation works best on oily skin types and provides a matte finish. There’s also mineral foundation, which works well on sensitive skin or women with rosacea. Finally, there’s tinted moisturizer which provides sheer coverage and lightly evens out skin tone. There are so many options to choose from, it really is worth a little experimenting to find out which formula is right for your complexion.
5. Overdoing it!
I think we’ve all been guilty of this offense at one time or another. We have to remind ourselves that makeup is meant to enhance what’s already there, not hide it. Less is more, as the saying goes. If it’s not Halloween and you’re not an extra in CATS, there’s no need for heavy makeup. Work with what your momma gave ya! Embrace your skin, imperfections and all. Test the waters when it comes to applying foundation until you figure out a technique or ritual that makes you look like yourself, with some subtle enhancements. If you’re not sure where to start, visit your local cosmetic counter and ask a makeup artist to show you the ropes (remember to buy something afterwards). If all else fails, invest in an airbrushing machine and applying foundation will be that much easier.
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