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How to Find Your Foundation Shade

First off what is foundation and what is its purpose? Foundation, also know as base makeup, is a tinted cosmetic used to even out skin tone and color, conceal imperfections, and protect the skin from the outside elements of climate, dirt, and pollution. Dark circles, blemishes, pigmentation, redness, and other facial features can be toned down with foundations. Foundation comes in different forms—mainly cream, liquid, powder, and mineral. Many foundations contain barrier agents, such as sunscreen and silicone to protect the complexion from environmental damage.

Foundations also come in two based forms: oil-based and water based. Foundations that usually contain mineral oil or other oils are referred to as oil based. *oil-based products are a good choice for people with normal to dry skin. Oil-free products are referred to as water based. Water based foundations generally give a more matt (nonshiny, dull) finish and help conceal minor blemishes and discolorations. These foundations are preferred for oily skin.

Personally, when I do my makeup I prefer to use an oil based foundation. This is because I love to set my makeup with a powder foundation to give me a smooth look. Then I spray on my favorite setting spray. This helps me reduce the look of overly dry, chalky, gray skin look and helps my skin feel moisturized.


This is the basis of all color selection. Learning the difference between warm and cool colors is essential for matching your best foundation (and other makeup) shade.

Warm colors have a yellow undertone and range from yellow and gold trough the oranges, red-oranges, most reds and even some yellow greens. Cool colors have a blue undertone, suggest coolness, and are dominated by blues, greens, violets, and blue-reds. Reds can be both warm and cool. If the red is orange-based, it is warm. If its blue-based, its cool.

Know that you have a basic understanding of warm and cool tones.

When you go shopping for your foundation take a closer look and compare you can see how some foundations appear pink, blue, green, and neutral. Don’t be afraid to test the foundation colors on in store. This helps you visually see the undertones of your skin and the foundation to find your match. So swatch, swatch, swatch.


When trying to determine your skin color you must first determine whether the skin is light, medium, or dark. Then determine if the skin is warm or cool. Skin color comes from the pigmentation in the skin and the blood showing through the skin. Most people need different foundation shades in the summer(darker) and winter (lighter). You may not find your true skin color in the beginning. Give yourself time and practice to develop your eye. With that being said, be cautious when choosing colors lighter than the skin. If the color is too light, it will turn gray or chalky on the skin.  

Skin tones and undertones

Ivory to fair: Fair, light skin with creamy or slightly pink undertones.

Beige or medium: Medium skin with pink and yellow undertones.

Olive or warm: Olive skin with gold/yellow or orange/red or blue/green undertones.

Deep or dark: Dark skin with brown/yellow, brown/red, or brown/blue undertones.

For various reasons some people may wish to alter their skin tones.  In terms of corrective makeup, you will be dealing with three basic tones: ruddy, sallow and hyperpigmentation.  

  • For ruddy skin (skin that is overly red, wind burned, or affected by rosacea), apply a yellow or green- tinted foundation to affected areas, blending carefully. You can also use a yellow or green color corrective concealer blend it into the skin. You can then apply a light layer of foundation with a yellow undertone (base) over the entire completion. Set it with a translucent powder and avoid using red or pink blushes. If you insist on blush, I recommend a neutral blush.

  • For sallow skin (skin that has a yellow hue), apply a pink based foundation. Blend carefully into jawline and neck. Set with a translucent powder. Avoid using yellow-based colors on eyes, cheeks, and lips.  

  • For hyperpigmentation affected skin, I recommend using a red or peach (depending on skin light/darkness) corrective concealer on affected areas. Then apply your foundation on top of the corrective concealer. Make sure to evenly blend everything out. Then go in with a translucent setting powder. The skin should be natural-looking and evenly toned once done.

The primary goal of makeup is to enhance your natural beauty by bringing out the most attractive features of the face, while minimizing those that are less attractive. There are strong beliefs associated with makeup. Some people avoid make up. Others believe their attractiveness depends on makeup. What do you believe? Do you like makeup? Is it fun? Or maybe intimidating? Did you find this post helpful? Feel free to share your thoughts. Thank you for reading.☺️

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