foundation 101 | let’s makeup | vancouver based makeup artist

So, let’s talk makeup! I decided for makeup tips and tricks I would start with the base and work my way up. Last makeup tip I talked about the importance of primer, why we use one and how to use it. So logically the next step would be foundations.

Foundations come in many types and a lot of ladies don’t use “traditional” (a.k.a. liquid ) foundation any more. There are so many kids of foundation our there (liquid, powder, whipped, cream to powder, mineral powder and tinted moisturizer… and I’m sure a few more too!) that it can be overwhelming to me to pick the right one for my need and skin type and I am educated in this stuff! Oh, little side note: I get overwhelmed very quickly by too many choices. Cereal, clothes, makeup… really anything, if there are too many choices my brain goes into overload and shuts down and I end up leaving without what I was set to get. I LOVE to research things online so I can avoid decision-indecision… but I digress…

So, the best way to know what YOU want to pick up next time you are at the makeup counter here is a little Foundation 101. I thought I would share a little about all the different types out there but, once I was done, I realized I went on a bit long so I decided to break it down into more digestible chunks. Today’s types of foundations are the 2 of the most popular types…


type of coverage: medium to full. Good for covering scars, breakouts, dark circles under the eyes and general discolouration.

good for_______ skin type: all skin types but some that are made to be “long lasting” may cause sensitive skin (and even not-so-sensitive skin) to breakout because they add oils and other waxy products to make them stay put. If you use a primer you don’t need long wearing products because that is what the primer will do for you!

black makeup sponge

most amazing (and chuckle worthy shaped) makeup sponge EVER!!!

how to apply: You can use your fingers or a foundation brush to apply the product to your skin (I use my fingers when I do my own makeup but when I’m working on clients I like the brush… I’m sure I will post about that another time ☺ ) When I am working on a client I approach the face in quarters since liquid foundation can set up a bit and make it harder to blend. If I am doing my own make up then I take the make-a-mess-and-clean-it-up-in-a-hurry method,. I put a good amount on the tips of my fingers and then smoosh in onto my face (hey, I’ve got two young kids and a whole lot going on so the days of having an hour to get ready are long gone). Then (whether on clients or myself) I use my MOST FAVORITE makeup product in the WORLD… the blender sponge. It is a makeup sponge made of rubber that looks more like a sex toy than a makeup applicator but it is AH-MAY-ZING!!! With it’s unique design you can get into the corner of your eyes, the crooks of your nose and use it’s broader sides to blend. I use it damp and it blends so beautifully that you look like you’ve been airbrushed. No streaks! Also, because it’s rubber you can just give it a little wash with shampoo when you’re done, let it air dry and it’s like brand new every time you use it!

personal favourite: Make Up Forever HD Foundation.

tinted moisturizer:

type of coverage: light to barely there. good to even out slight variances in the skin and slightly evens out skin tone. Really great for those who want to wear makeup but don’t want to look like they are wearing makeup.

good for ________ skin: all skin types and very beneficial to drier skin since it only has a slight pigmentation but is high in hydration.
how to apply: just like you would your moisturizer, a little on your finger tips and rub it in until it is absorbed.

personal favourite: personally, I think buying a tinted moisturizer (unless you are in LOVE with your brand) is a waste of money. I take my favourite cream and add a couple of drops of my favourite foundation to it, blend it in the palm of my hand and, viola, I’ve got tinted moisturizer. Then I can vary the amount of coverage when needed by changing the ratio of cream to foundation.

How do I get the right colour?

Especially post summer tan this one is a tough one! A lot of girls match their face but because a lot of girls where sunscreen all the time on their face but not their necks or chest there can be a couple of shades difference between the two.

Here’s my rule of thumb when it comes to skin matching. The lighter the coverage, the higher you match it. If you are going with a full coverage foundation, match it to your neck because that is where you will blend to and if you match it to you face and it is a couple of shades lighter than your neck it won’t look right BUT is you are using a tinted moisturizer then you want to match it more to the skin on your face otherwise you could end up with dark and light streaks and that’s no good. When in doubt, ask a professional! From Holt Renfrew to Shoppers Drug Mart, there are plenty of places that will give you samples and do your colour selection for you. And remember you may need to colours; one for summer/fall when you have a bit of colour to you and one for winter/spring after your tan fades.

Next week I will cover the rest of the foundations.

Thanks and have a beautiful day!

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