While I’m kind of against younger women wearing foundation because I believe we should let our naturally beautiful and youthful skin breathe, I know that many of us still wear foundation. So if we’re going to wear it, we might as well wear it right.
First off, the product you should choose is a major factor in the quality of the overall look. Foundation is one those products where you should invest a little more dough. It’s preferable to buy your foundation at a department store (such as Nordstrom, Sephora, etc.) for two important reasons. Pricier foundations have a wider range of shades and also use higher quality ingredients to produce a color that is less orange-y than most drugstore brands, and while the cheaper foundations have improved in their quality, there’s nothing like the good formulations and consistencies of the more expensive brands. Second reason is that in a department store or makeup boutique, you have the option of having the lady behind the counter test shades on your skin, so you can actually SEE which shade matches your skin tone exactly, and the more exact, the better. You can’t test out foundations in a drugstore.
So even if you don’t have a ton of cash saved up just for cosmetics, foundation is one of those products you really should invest it. It’s more worth it to buy one quality, long-lasting foundation than to buy several cheap cosmetic products. I strongly suggest that you go to the mall, and have the ladies behind the makeup counters help you pick out the right shade for your skin.
Once you have the right product, then come the tools. Typically, there are three ways to go about applying foundation: using a brush, using a sponge, and using your fingers.
Using a brush is probably the most professional method and gives the most coverage. I always apply foundation by pouring a dime-sized drop on the back of my hand. The back of the hand (and sometimes the wrist) is almost like a painter’s palette for a makeup artist because that’s where your hands have the least amount of oils, which can often ruin makeup. They serve as great places to mix makeup before applying it. I like to dip my brush into the foundation after I put it on my hand because directly dipping it into the container or pouring it on the brush or face is too heavy and makes it harder to spread the foundation evenly. Here's a great video that shows how to apply natural-looking foundation:
It includes a great trick: using two foundation brushes, the first one to deposit color and the second one to blend it out. Perfect for looking flawless, yet natural. It also has some great highlighter tricks, which I’ll talk about more in depth in another post. (Notice the makeup artist starts off by pouring the foundation onto the back of her hand.) Also, make sure that you wash your brushes (with water and shampoo) regularly (like once every two weeks or so).
Using a sponge will give the lightest coverage, as the sponge will absorb some of the foundation. Again, I start by pouring a blob on the back of my hand and then using the thicker side of a wedge sponge to blend it out a bit before applying it to the face. There are lots of different-sized sponges out there but the best shape is the wedge.
There’s also a goofy egg-shaped sponge you can get at Target called the Beauty Blender. I’ve never tried it before, but it looks fun (it’s hot pink!!) and apparently a lot of celebrities swear by it. The only gripe I would have about it is that it’s reusable, and while it comes with a cleanser, I just find it iffy using the same sponge for a long period of time. Speaking of which, if you use the regular wedge-shaped sponges, REPLACE THEM REGULARLY. Otherwise, it’s a hotbed of bacteria, especially if you apply foundation daily.
How can you say that that's not fun?
Now, last but not…well, actually, it probably IS least, because honestly, I can’t STAND it when people apply foundation with their fingers. First off, your hands have been EVERYWHERE. Germy, germy, germy. It’s like taking everything you touch and smacking it on your face. Not a good idea. Secondly, you’ve got lots of oils on your hands. Bacteria AND oil. Perfect recipe for breakouts. And lastly, your fingers are just not made for blending foundation. It usually comes out uneven and spotty. So please, ladies, use a sponge or a brush.
Remember, you don’t have to put foundation all over your face if you don’t want to. You should only use it on parts of your face where you’d like the skin to be more even-looking. And of course, less is more. Foundation should not replace your skin.Thanks for reading, and please comment!!