Beauty Blog

A how-to, must-buy guide for choosing the right makeup, skincare and haircare products for you. Ask questions... rate products and chat about all things girlie.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Chosing the right foundation for you.... unless your me... then you just buy them all.

I have a confession to make. I have a small infatuation with foundations. Meh, no its actually quite an unhealthy obsession to be honest... but whatever. You know how some people go out and buy shoes... well that's me, except with little golden bottles of liquid sunshine. I love them! They can make you look tanned, dewy, matte or fresh faced on any given day. If you find the right one, it never lets you down. And always make you look your best. Ahhhh... see kind of like shoes.

Go into your makeup bag, now tell me, how many bottles of foundation do you have? 1, maybe 2? If you enjoy the sun, 3 tops, right? I have a whole kit full of foundations. Yes, i know i have a problem, but that's beside the point. Foundations come in all shapes and sizes, just like shoes. You know those days when you plan to wear your cute peep toe, kitten heels and instead of looking sexy, you look like your grandma going off the church... yea... same thing. You always need a backup plan, to your failsafe.

Without knowing you and your skin, I cannot tell you which foundation would be best. But I'm going to give you an overview of how to find the right one for you, as well as which ones i prefer. I'm sure your getting sick of listening to me tell you what i like.... but hey, its my blog, so too bad for you :) lol.

Anyways, foundations. There are SO MANY out there... Cover girl, Remel, L'Oreal, Maybelline, Bobbi Brown, Clinique, Estee Lauder, Mac, Smashbox, Laura Mercier and LancĂ´me... You get the idea. Its overwhelming! Who makes the best product? Which helps with dry or oily skin, who's product wears the longest... there are so many questions that go into picking the right foundation. Hence why i have so many. That, and not everyone i work with is NC-30. (for you MAC fans)

First of all you need to figure out your skin type. Are you dry, oily or normal. If you are oily for example, you want to gravitate toward something that says "oil-free" on the bottle. Dry? Look for a moisturizing foundation that promotes "hydration". There are also a wide range of anti aging products out there that look fantastic on mature skin ( over 40, with exceptions :) please don't send me hate mail ). For example, Elizabeth Arden Intervene SPF 15 is nice, goes on soft and smooth and can help conceal and prevent fine lines and wrinkles.

Next you need to figure out weather you have a warm or cool skin tone. Here are a few simple rules of thumb...
1) Turn your wrist over and look under a light. Do your veins look more green or blue?

If you said green you are more likely a warm skin tone.
If you said Blue, a cool skin tone is more likely.

2) Get a piece of white paper, or a towel. Now hold it up to your face in front of a (large) mirror. Does your skin look more yellow or reddish/blue?

If you said Yellow you would be warm, if it looks reddish blue or rosy it would cool.

There are a ton of other ways to tell what your skin tone is, but honestly, the best and most accurate way if your confused is to approach a local cosmetic counter at the mall. They will be able to let you know.

Anyways, most foundations are split up according to skin tone. There are warm, cool and neutral colors. Finding your proper tone will make all the difference in the way your foundation looks on you.

When trying to determine the right shade, place a small amount of the product at your jaw line and blend well. Go to a window or a door if possible, and try to look in a mirror. Did it blend in nicely? Can you see the foundation? Most importantly, do you look like an oompa loompa? If so, try something lighter... let your friends laugh at someone else, not you. I know, some foundations that match your skin tone make you look pasty (sometimes even like death), if so, try a shade darker... but don't go overboard, there is always bronzer.

Worse case scenario, you get it home and you look like your old (sun worshiping) Aunt Ida, return it. Most Drugstores and cosmetic counters will let you exchange a product as long as it is within a few days of purchase.

Finally, Application. You have your choice of tools.... you can use a foundation brush, a sponge or your fingers (PLEASE don't use your fingers... or you will be re-reading the blog on skincare, and blemish control). Make sure you are not allergic to latex if you decide to use a sponge. (Condoms and dishwashing gloves are made of latex, have you ever had a reaction ?) If not, go crazy, buy whichever you would like. However, if you are allergic to latex, there are plenty of sponges out there that are latex free. In general, a foundation brush will give you more coverage, where as a sponge (by nature) will absorb some of the product and deliver a sheerer finish.

Also, don't feel like you need to put foundation all over your face. If you just require some "help" around your nose or eyes... then that's all you need. Just be sure to blend well!!!

Now onto some products... For along time i had a big "hate on" (as my husband would call it) for MAC foundations. They sucked so bad! I would tell everyone within earshot to not waste their money. Well, I stand corrected. A few years ago i started trying MAC foundations again and I can wholeheartedly say they have come along way. I love them. MAC carries a number of really good foundations, but personally their face and body makeup is great. Is goes on smooth, it isn't thick and it gives just enough coverage. All in all, good product. Also, their Studio sculpt SPF15 is fantastic too, but definitely thicker. It gives a medium to full coverage.

Another foundation that i just discovered and really enjoy is Estee lauder Double Wear Light, Stay in place foundation. I have to admit, I was a skeptic, but honestly it works. I applied my makeup at 2pm on Saturday and when I came home at nearly 2:30am it was still in place, not a smudge or a rain mark ( and for those of you in Vancouver, you know it was pissing that night ). I was really impressed. I've used Estee Lauder foundation in the past, and always seem to keep coming back to them. They're foundations never feel thick or cakey, and always leave my face looking nice but not over done. Definitely worth a try. Estee Lauder Double Wear Light. Available at The Bay Nationwide or online. $ 47 . ( yep, its pricey, wait till there is a nice gift with purchase going on, so its worth your while.)

Anyways, I hope this helps clear up a few things. If you have any other questions feel free to drop me a line.

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