When you use the right color of foundation it can help to hide flaws and give you the appearance of smooth, blemish-free skin. Foundation in the wrong shade, however, can actually do more harm than good, turning your head a different color than your body and leaving an obvious line where your foundation ends and your neck begins. Nobody wants to look like their head doesn’t belong to their body! By taking the time to choose the right shade of foundation for your skin it will become much easier to get a natural makeup look that blends perfectly with the rest of your skin leaving no obvious lines. Here’s what to do to get the perfect shade of foundation for your skin.
The first thing you need to do before picking a foundation color is to determine whether you have cool or warm skin. The traditional way to do this is to hold colored paper or fabric up to your face in cool and warm shades (such as a blue piece and orange piece) and decide which looks better on you.
However, I always thought that this method leaves a whole lot of guess work and it is easy to be wrong. One very easy way to tell whether your skin is cool or warm that is more accurate is to check out the veins on the inside of your wrist. If the veins look more blue you have cool skin, if they have more of a greenish tinge you have warm skin. If your skin is too dark or you can’t easily see the veins stick with the fabric or paper method.
Next, a common myth about choosing a color of foundation is that you should match it to your wrist or hand. It is actually better to match the foundation to your jaw line since this is the area where your foundation will end and your neck will begin.
Ideally, you should test a small amount of foundation on your chin or jaw line, although this can be tricky if you are shopping where there are not samples such as at a box store. Several foundation manufacturers have realized that this is a problem and have started offering tiny little trial sized packs that you can buy at the store and take home to try before you get a big bottle. These are a great option if you can find them since they can help you to get the perfect shade.
Another option is to buy the shade that you think is right and return it to the drugstore or department store if it is wrong. Most department stores will accept returns on cosmetics. Just try to be as accurate as you can in your guesses on color so you don’t have to return items too many times.
If all else fails, head to a department store beauty counter with a clean face and sample the foundations there. Foundations at beauty counters are usually a lot more expensive, but if nothing else it can help you figure out the color you need and you can try to find a cheaper version of it later.
To tell if a shade is right for you apply it to your jaw line and blend the edges with your skin. If you can see the foundation at all then the color is wrong. If you can’t see it you’ve found your perfect shade.
Tip: Many women make the mistake of intentionally buying a foundation that is too dark for them thinking it will help them to look tanner or healthier. If you are one of these women – stop! Instead of trying to get a healthy glow from your foundation use a bronzer or blush to give your face color. If you want pretty makeup and fresh looking skin it is vital that your skin and foundation match perfectly.