Article by BR Amelia
GAH is there anything more traumatic than shopping for a new pair of jeans? Oh wait, yeap, there is. Shopping for foundation. Now usually it's not too hard to narrow down the formula, it'll either say 'for dry skin', 'for ageing skin' or have some other clue on the label. If not you can Google it. But what Google can't do is tell you what shade you are.
So there you are formula chosen, standing looking at bottles of shades for so long security starts lurking.
The right foundation will blend perfectly into your skin. It won't be obvious and it will match your natural skin colour. A foundation isn't meant to be used like a mask - it should be used to counteract redness, minimise and hide pores and blemishes and to even out your skin tone. The perfect foundation is the one people can't see you're wearing.
Here's our top tips for the perfect match!
1. Always try before you buy.
Foundation isn't like buying an eye pencil. You can't be sure of the colour of a foundation until it is on your skin. If ever there were a list of try-before-you-buy products, foundation would top it. (closely followed by jeans)
2. Be bare faced.
Don't show up to the store with anything more than a lightly moisturised face.
3. Don't be afraid to ask.
Getting colour-matched by a trained professional makeup artist is probably the best way to ensure you take home your perfect shade. Don't be afraid to ask for help, even on self-select displays.
4. Don't think you have to spend large.
Contrary to what people think, you don't need to delve into the higher end products to find a broad shade range. Sure, a lot of drugstore brands carry like 6 shades, but other affordable brands do have a fab shade range.
5. It's in the jaw.
Let's get something straight. The back of your hand or your inner wrist are nowhere near similar to the skin you'll be using your foundation on. Swatch colours on your jawline, as this will allow you to take in to account the colour of your neck
6. Three stripes.
Swatch no more than three colours close to the shade you think you need on to your jawline at any one time. The right shade will disappear into your skin.
7. It's only natural if it's natural outside.
Just as you can't trust a changing room mirror, you can not trust shop lighting. Stand outside in natural light to check out the shades. So, note to self, put a compact
8. Hmming and Ahhing.
If you can't decide between two shades (and don't have time to continue your search) opt for the darker shade. By blending well you'll come off with a healthy 'tan'; whereas no matter how much you buff and blend a shade that's too light, you'll only come off chalky and ghost like. Plus you can always mix a darker shade with a little moisturiser to lighten it up a bit.
9. No testing allowed.
Find another store. Seriously.
Ok if that's not an option, and you really can't try the foundation then the only tip we can give you is to hold a couple of bottles to your neck in natural light and see which one best matches. And maybe say a little prayer up to the makeup gods to bestow good matching in your favour.