The Art of Choosing Foundation Like A Pro

One of the most important cosmetic decisions a person can make involves the selection of the right foundation. 

Foundation serves a variety of purposes including protecting the skin from sun damage, evening out skin tone, minimizing fine lines, and giving your skin a more polished, healthy look. Some foundations even add a subtle hint of color to the face. If you’re confused about all the options available to you, here are some guidelines on how to choose the right foundation:

Consider your undertones

Everyone’s skin has an underlying tint that’s either cool or warm. This information is important for selecting your foundation shade. 

To determine your undertones, look at the skin in an area where you’ve received less sun exposure such as the underside of your wrists. Study the skin tone and the color of the veins. 

If your skin has a golden or reddish cast and the veins appear green in color, you most likely have warm undertones. 

If your skin in this area appears pink or blue and you have blue coloration of your veins, you probably have cool undertones. You’ll want to choose a foundation shade that matches these undertones. 

Know your skin type

If your skin is predominantly oily and you’re prone to outbreaks of acne, you’ll want to purchase a foundation that’s oil free and non-comedogenic. A foundation with added oil can be a disaster when applied to acne prone skin. Likewise, if your skin is dry or more mature, you’ll want a creamier or more moisturizing foundation. Always choose a foundation with sunscreen if you don’t plan on applying a separate sun block formula. 

Consider the time of year

If you are in the middle summer time and you’ll be out in the sun, you may want to choose a slightly darker shade of foundation to avoid a chalky or pasty look. Again, be sure your selection has added sunscreen. You may want to purchase a foundation for use in the summer and a separate one for use in the winter months when your natural skin tends to be paler. 

Consider the amount of coverage you need

If you’re looking for minimal coverage, you may be able to get by with a tinted moisturizer or a very sheer, liquid foundation. Another option are the newer mineral foundations that provide sheer coverage. If you want heavier coverage, you may want to consider a heavier, cream foundation or a foundation stick. You can also enhance the coverage of a foundation by applying concealer to areas that need extra help. 

When choosing a foundation, it’s best to start at the cosmetic counter where you have the freedom to try different colors and formulations. Avoid wearing makeup when you shop for foundation and carry a small hand mirror so you can view different shades in direct light. Don’t rely on the lighting at the cosmetic counter. A foundation may look totally different when you walk out into the light. 

Choosing the right foundation doesn’t have to be an impossible task once you understand your skin type and underlying skin tones. Keep these tips in mind the next time you set out to choose a foundation. 

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