Beginners Guide: Foundation

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What is Foundation

Foundation is a cosmetic used to smooth out the face or cover skin discolouration and spots. It serves as the canvas for the rest of your makeup. Foundation comes in a wide array of skin-coloured shades to match different skin tones and coverage varies from sheer to full. It is important to choose foundation that best suits your skin type and skin tone.

Coverage

Coverage refers to how much of your skin will show through after application.

Sheer means very thin or transparent. This means sheer foundation offers light coverage and evens out skin tone without concealing much of the skin. It is normally best for people with minor discolouration, who to perfect their skin tone.

Medium coverage foundation conceals more skin than sheer foundation. It evens out skin tone as well as cover minor skin imperfections such as spots.

Full coverage foundation provides an opaque coverage. It covers blemishes, discolouration and evens out skin tone.

Formulations

Foundation comes in a number of formulations. The most common being cream, powder, liquid and stick.

Liquid Foundation is the most popular. It is easy to apply and coverage can be build-able e.g. from light to medium coverage, depending on the number of applications. Most people will be able to find a liquid foundation to suit their needs.

 

liquid

Photo Credit: Sephora

  • Most Suitable Skin Type: Dry and combination skin. People with oily skin can also wear liquid foundation with a matte finish. 

Cream Foundation has a creamy, moisturizing consistency. It is thicker than liquid foundation and usually comes in a compact case or jar.

cream

Photo Credit: Sephora

 

  • Most Suitable Skin Type: Great for dry skin and mature skin

Stick Foundation tends to have full coverage. The consistency is thick and may feel heavy on the skin. It is great at covering scars, birthmarks and larger imperfections and can double as a concealer.

stick

Photo Credit: Sephora

  • Most Suitable Skin Type: Stick foundations can be suitable for all skin types, except acne prone skin. The thick and heavy texture can clog pores and exacerbate acne.

Powder foundation is a non clogging, formula and lightweight. It is ideal for people with oily skin because it is great at absorbing oil. It is also great for those with acne prone skin since its lightweight. However it isn’t great at concealing pitted scars and uneven skin texture.

http://www.sephora.com/powder-foundation-P381736?keyword=NARS%20Powder%20Foundation%20%20P381736&skuId=1256676&_requestid=344683

Photo Credit: Sephora

  • Most Suitable Skin Type: Oily skin

Liquid, cream, stick and powder are the most common types of foundations. However there other types of formulations. These include gel, serum, mineral, cream to powder, spray and mousse foundation. 

Finishes

When foundation is applied to the skin it can create a dewy/luminous, satin, natural or matte finish.

Dewy finish foundations creates a soft glow and natural looking sheen. They contain more water-based ingredients, and light reflecting oils, giving a moist appearance to the skin. These foundations are great for normal to dry skin and mature skin

Satin finish foundations tend to last longer than dewy finish foundations.They create a natural, smooth finish. A perfect balance between matte and dewy.

Matte means without shine. Matte foundations are great for people with oily and combination skin because they eliminate shine. A matte finish has the longest longevity  and tend to have medium to full coverage. Matte foundations are often, but not always, powder foundations. 

Foundation for Your Skin Type

Dry skin – If your skin is dry look for foundations meant for dry skin. Foundations with a dewy or satin finish would be ideal. Liquid, cream and serum foundations are great for dry skin. Avoid powder, waterproof and oil-control foundations. They tend to dry the skin and enhance dry patches.

  • Recommendation:  MAC Face & Body

Normal skin – If you have normal skin it really depends on the type of finish you desire. You can wear foundations with any finish and the coverage will depend on how much discolouration you want to hide.

Oily skin – If your skin is oily it is important to choose foundations that are made specifically for oily skin. Powder and liquid foundations with a matte finish would be ideal. 

  • Recommendation: MakeUp For Ever Mat+ Velvet

Sensitive and acne prone skin – If your skin is sensitive, it is best to stay away from things that can irritate it. It may be challenging to find a foundation you won’t react to, it is definitely a trail-and-error process. It helps to have an understanding of what your skin needs and what triggers a reaction. Looking for hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic foundations could ease the process of finding the right foundation for this skin type.

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