Foundation can be your best friend and your worst nightmare. Who hasn't had the experience of spending an afternoon trying on brands, types, and shades, making a purchase, and then getting home and hating it? But, when you do find that perfect match it is like finding your best friend! We recently asked you to share with us some concerns you have with your foundation, and we have some suggestions. So, here goes...
"Do I need to wear a foundation?"
Bottom line answer is no. But, that is like asking, "Do I need to go to the gym?" It is a question that only you can answer for yourself. Foundation is there to help you look and feel more confident, not make you feel like you are tied down to it. Often people reserve their foundations for special events so they look a little more polished. People also will use foundation, but maybe not over the entire face; just in the areas where the skin is uneven. That is why, if you do wear it you want it to match perfectly. Don't pick one to give you a little more color (that is what a bronzer is for). So even though this sounds like an easy question, I think it is more complicated.
"How do I pick the perfect color to match my skin tone?"
This is where the trial and error process comes in. If you go to a department store and can try different foundation shades make sure you are testing it on your jaw line. Grab three shades that you think are close to your tone and do a swipe of each on your jaw. You don't want to test on your hand or wrist as you won't be wearing it there. Secondly give it a few minutes to dry down. Depending on the stability of the pigments the foundation may dry to a different tone. Don't rush this! Then, take a mirror and check yourself out in the natural light. Stores often have lighting that either casts a pink or yellow hue and that can change how the color looks in natural light. If you are just picking one up from the drugstore, this is where it gets tricky as you can't try one on usually. When you are doing this, remember that most of us have both pink and yellow in our skin. Don't get fooled by things like freckles or a little redness in the cheeks! Also, check with the store on their return policy to see if you can exchange it if the color is not right.
"I don't want to look like I am wearing foundation. What should I use?"
This is where your tinted moisturizer or BB cream comes in. You can read all about BB creams in recent blog posts. These products are wonderful because they offer a light coverage, really just something to even out the skin, but don't have a lot of texture. Texture is why we get that "made up" look. The less texture on the skin the better. Now, if you need coverage because of special concerns you may need a fuller coverage foundation for that area (and yes, having two foundations is VERY common). Also, if you are a powder foundation kind of girl, look for powders that do not have a lot of binding agents or talc in them. My favorite powder foundation is Cover FX and it has no talc in it!!
"Do you prefer a BB cream or a traditional cream foundation?"
Again, this depends on how much coverage you need. BB creams are often used as a quick fix for running around in the day time, but not so much for when you want a flawless complexion. I love them both and this is a perfect example of having two types of foundations. Use your BB cream for a day at the office, for running errands, for weekends and then use your traditional cream foundation or fuller coverage foundation for the party, the date night, or the board meeting.
"Do I need to use my regular moisturizer with SPF if I am using a BB cream?"
Not all BB creams are created equal. Many of their benefits tend to skew in one direction (ie: moisture, coverage, spf protection, etc). Also, not all BB creams have an spf, although most do. You need to make sure you are reading up about your BB cream to see what benefits you will get. In general I like to recommend that during the winter months it is probably best to continue to use your daily moisturizer under you BB cream and then in the summer you may be able to use your BB cream alone for daytime and then use a good night time moisturizer.
"What type of foundation is best for a dry skin?"
Usually drier skins like a cream based foundation, for the simple fact that they are more emollient. They have the ability to blend more easily across the skin. Often powder foundations will show up more on a dry skin (taking us back to the idea of too much texture on the skin). Again, if you love a powder use it, but make sure you are picking the right one. As far as a cream foundation, I am going to once again go back to Cover FX. They have an amazing cream foundation that can be applied as lightly as a tinted moisturizer (using their synthetic powder brush) or as beautifully as a full coverage foundation (with the traditional foundation brush).
"What is a reasonably priced foundation for an oily skin?'
This of course depends on what type of foundation you like. Powders can be great (as long as you look for non-talc ones) and liquids are beautiful (maybe go for oil free), so you need to know your preference. Although Laura Mercier tinted moisturizers have been a staple for many people, they are $43 dollars. If you want to get a similar effect but not break the bank you should take a look at Aveda Inner Light ($23) or Boots No. 7 Soft and Sheer ($9-$12). You may not get as many skin care benefits, but hey, that is what skincare is for!
"Should I put foundation under my eyes?"
My basic rule of thumb is the right tool for the right job. Foundation can always be used in a pinch, and as technology has evolved it is not as "bad" as it used to be to do this. However concealers are created a little differently as the skin around the eye is much more delicate. Also, your foundation may not be the right color to hide those dark circles. For a quick fix, when you are in a hurry sure, but when you want to make sure you are looking your best, take an extra 2 minutes and use an under eye concealer.
I hope this has been useful to you! If there are other questions you have please feel free to leave a post and we will answer them for you. Happy makeup-ing!!