How to find your perfect foundation

The insider make-up tips to help you choose the perfect foundation for your skin type and tone.

We know that, when applied flawlessly, foundation can make your skin brighter and radiant.

Plus, it provides the base for all your other facial makeup.

So choosing the right foundation to suit your skin type and tone is an important first step.

Find a base to suit your skin type

Whether you use a liquid, stick or compact foundation is largely down to personal preference.

But in saying that, certain formulas are best suited to different skin types.

If you have:

  • Dry skin: Pick a hydrating or oil-free moisture formula. Most foundations have a time-release system that can continuously moisturise for up to 11 hours.
  • Oily skin: Opt for a water-based or oil-free formula that’s non-comedogenic (meaning it won’t cause blackheads or whiteheads). A powder or liquid foundation will look the most natural.
  • Fine lines: Check out the new light-diffusing formulas that subtly scatter light when it hits your face, softening your flaws.
  • Uneven pigmentation: Look for a full-coverage formula. Cream-to-powder varieties are the best for you.

Your foundation formula guide

Stick foundation

Spot-conceals blemishes and redness around the nose.

Dab a thin layer on problem areas – its creamy texture blends into flaky places.

Light-diffusing makeup

Ultra-light-reflecting pigments create a flawless complexion.

They can be applied for a sheer or medium coverage.

Liquid foundation

Apply with a damp sponge for dewiness or dry for more dramatic coverage.

Cream foundation

Has amazing camouflaging abilities and provides maximum coverage for imperfections on dry skin.

Use fingertips to blend outward for a natural finish.

Powder foundation

Covers minor blemishes on oily complexions.

Pat your skin with some blotting paper before applying to prevent caking.

Mattifying makeup

Shine patrol for normal and oily complexions. Look for formulas with absorbing micro-sponges.

Mineral makeup

Free of fillers, chemicals, dyes, fragrances, talc and chemical preservatives.

It’s perfect for sensitive skin, as it is non-irritating.

Tinted moisturiser

Great for normal or oily skins.

Tap your tinted moisturiser on, don’t rub it in or it will disappear into the skin.

How to find your most natural shade

  • Apply three or four foundation shades on your cheek, the perfect shade will merge with your skin without too much blending.
  • Your skin’s oils can change the shade of your foundation so don’t buy it until you’ve seen how it looks after half an hour. And never buy a foundation without seeing how it looks in daylight.
  • If you can’t find the perfect shade, custom blend your own. You’ll have total control of the colour and the consistency. Choose two foundations, one slighter darker and one lighter than your complexion so you can mix up the perfect shade all year round.

Now you have a great base, here’s how to use blush, bronzer and highlighter to give you a real glow, and our guides to great lashes and lips.

Written by Nikki Yazxhi.