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BellaOnline's Cosmetics Editor

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How to Find Your Perfect Foundation

Guest Author - Kim Ringler

Everybody knows that a good canvas is necessary to create a masterpiece. In the world of cosmetics, that canvas is your face and the masterpiece is created with cosmetics. And that canvas begins with the aptly named foundation—that is what will help create a beautiful canvas for the rest of your makeup.

If you walk into a drug store or a beauty store, there are seemingly endless choices of foundations. With all the new formulas coming out, it can be even more overwhelming. Not only do you have to choose the correct color, but then you need to decide a formula—is a liquid or stick foundation better? How can you tell which foundation will be your perfect match? This article will give you some advice so you will be more confident in finding your perfect foundation match!

If you have dry skin, stay away from powder foundations (and powder blushes for that matter)! Bare Minerals is a terrific product, but powder on dry skin can end up accentuating any flaky skin you have, and will not provide a fresh, pretty look. Check the product to make sure it advertises as “hydrating” and “light coverage”. You can always build on coverage if you have a break out. Before you apply your makeup, ensure you have moisturizer (preferably moisturizer with sunscreen) to keep your skin hydrated. If you do not need heavy coverage, a moisturizing foundation is a great solution!

Oily skin is something I have battled, and tried about every product out there. Now I have my routine down to three products: foundation, powder to set my makeup in the morning, and blotting paper to use throughout the day. With oily skin you are likely going to want a mattifier—a product that helps absorb the oil in your face as well as set your makeup. You can find them in any price range, from Wal-Mart to Macy’s. My recommendation is Smashbox Anti Shine (sells for around $35 US). I have been using it for years. It comes out of the tube in an almost jelly like consistency, but absorbs easily and helps makeup stay put. Ladies with oily skin will want to avoid any foundation containing oil like the plague! Instead look for “oil free” or “silica” on the product; both indicate they work at reducing oiliness. As for the formulas, there are some choices. Mousse--Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse Foundation for example--worked satisfactorily at keeping skin matte, lasted for most of the day but I had trouble finding my color. If you can match your color, I would recommend this mousse for keeping skin matte . I have occasionally strayed when it comes to foundation but always end up back to Make Up For Ever’s Mat Velvet and Mattifying Foundation. It goes on flawlessly, looks natural, and is long lasting. Again, this is definitely a bit pricey ($40 US) but as with most foundations, a little goes a long way. Ladies with oily skin can also use stick or powder formulas (such as the Bare Minerals listed above).

Sensitive skin can be the most difficult to match. You are going to look for the following in your foundations: “fragrance free” and ” oil-free” that have been tested. Stick foundation will be too heavy for you, so a liquid foundation or powder formula would work better. Lancôme and Estee Lauder both contain foundations that are fragrance free. Origins and Aveda only use organic ingredients so those would all be good brands to start. Before buying a bottle of foundation, ask for a test to take home; this way you can monitor to ensure there are no reactions.

The major skin types/foundations have been covered, but there are new products every day. I know beauty lines have already distributed spray on foundation. Trying to find your way through the maze of all the products promising to make you look like Taylor Swift or Drew Barrymore may be enticing, but try to remember which formulas and ingredients you should look for before purchasing a base for your canvas!


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Content copyright © 2013 by Kim Ringler. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Kim Ringler. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Kimberly Williamson for details.

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