Friday, March 18, 2011

Foundation Tips and Techniques

If you have foundation woes, let me just say that you're not the only one. Even after years of being a beauty fiend/makeup lover, I still have issues with finding the "perfect" foundation. Yes, I've got about 5 bottles of foundation in my makeup kit but I always feel unsatisfied. It's not that I don't like the foundations I have because I use to be in love with each one of them at some point or another, but I think they always seem to come up short somehow. For example, one sinks into my pores after a few hours, another is too white, and another is too drying. It's never "perfect" though I think that many foundations are imperfect in general. And yes I realize that I ask for too much when I say I want something with very light coverage that looks natural but can hide my rosacea redness, and not be too oily even though I'm a grease pot. Sounds impossible right? Maybe not because last week I created my own personal foundation concoction and it turns out to be just right (at least so far!).

Before I begin, I must say that this do-it-yourself foundation is only going to work for those with relatively good skin as in no bumps. Secondly, this mixture will give you a very light, almost tinted moisturizer effect so do not expect a lot of coverage. Thirdly, you need a good concealer that matches your skin color to begin with. In other words, if you don't start off with a concealer that is close to your skin tone, the final product won't be so pretty. And lastly, this mixture will give you a satin to dewy finish depending on your selection of primer, moisturizers, etc. so don't expect a matte finish.

Items you need before you get started:
-Get a match at any MAC cosmetics counter for your skin color in the" Select Cover-up" concealer line that comes in a small squeeze tube. It's the liquid formula, not the kind in a small pot or pan. I use the NW 20 concealer color for your reference.
-Obtain a liquid makeup primer. I personally use Laura Mercier's Hydrating Primer but I also like the NARS Pro-Prime SPF 30 Primer. In general any liquid primer will do.
-A good moisturizer. Avoid overly greasy moisturizers or moisturizers that leave a greasy residue if you're oily-skinned. If you're dry skinned then that is fine. I personally am currently using Bobbi Brown's Hydrating Face Cream.

Step 1: Moisturize your skin.
Step 2: Squeeze out a small amount of concealer and I do mean small, as in pebble size.
Step 3: Squeeze out a nickle size amount of the primer.
Step 4: Mix the primer and concealer until well blended. The mixture should not be 50/50 unless you need a lot of coverage. I usually mix about 70% primer with 30% concealer.
Step 5: Apply to your face as you would a moisturizer.
Step 6: Using that same concealer, go back with a small concealer brush and cover up areas that need a little bit more coverage such as acne-scars, etc.

The reason why I do this routine and prefer it over using a tinted moisturizer (TM) is because the color match is better. TMs usually come in a limited number of shades so typically, if you're darker or really fair you have trouble finding a good tinted moisturizer that matches your skin color. Secondly, when I try to use foundation it always seems to cake up and look like a mask because I don't wear foundation but maybe 10 times a year. I usually go with just a little concealer on problem areas so wearing foundation always looks weird to me. I like the mixture I detailed above because the coverage is so sheer it's fantastic and natural looking, in my opinion that is. I think the best part of it all though has to be the light/natural look with decent coverage you get because with this mixture, you can conceal problem spots and not have it be a different color than your foundation since your foundation was made from the concealer to begin with.

Hope you get to try this out and love it as much as I do!

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