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How To Choose The Right Foundation Shade For Your Skin Tone | 6 Simple Steps

Beauty | Beauty Tips | Makeup Hacks | Choose Best Foundation | Get The Right Foundation Shade | Know Your Skin Tone & Undertone

Have you ever felt “ Why do you seem to look darker after applying makeup??” or else “Why does the color of your face and neck look so different from each other? We generally come across such concerns and the reason for all these problems is just one - using the wrong shade of makeup foundation.

The foundation plays a very important role in your makeup process. It’s the base makeup that provides a flawless look. One wrong step can fully ruin your complete makeup look. To avoid this it’s really necessary to pick up the right shade and type of foundation for your skin.

You have a lot of options available in the market to choose from. But the issue is there’s no one foundation that fits all. This can be overwhelming for some people especially if you are a makeup beginner or wants to try out something new. Don’t worry, here’s the complete step by step guide on how to choose the perfect foundation shade for you.

1) Choose Depending on Your Skin Type -

Now before going for the perfect shade, it’s vital that you choose the right type of foundation for your skin. All individuals differ in their skin types with each other.

Hence there is what you need to follow while selecting your perfect foundation irrespective of their brands -

  1. Skin that is oily and is prone to acne or breakouts should always go for oil-free foundations which are lightweight and provide a matte finished look to your face.

  2. If you have dry skin always go for moisturizing liquid foundations that hydrate your skin and at the same time provide good coverage.

  3. For normal skin types with no major skin,] issues should use a sheer tinted or liquid moisturizing foundation that provides an even skin tone and also conceals the minor blemishes or skin flaws. This helps in keeping the skin healthy.

  4. Sensitive skin people who react to cleansers and moisturizers should opt for hypoallergenic or non-comedogenic, fragrance-free foundations.

  5. For mature and aged skin, try to avoid heavy matte or powder-based foundations. Instead, you should invest in lightweight medium coverage foundations that don't show out your wrinkles and fine lines.

Tip - Including a foundation that has some SPF in it can be a good add on in protecting your skin from further damage. If you do not have such a foundation, then always use a good sunscreen which has at least SPF 30 to do the job.

2) Know Your Skin Tone -

We Indians usually or rather largely have a medium skin tone irrespective of the regions we hail from. However, we also have light and dark skin people living in different parts of the world including India. Therefore skin tones are mainly divided into 3 categories - Light, Medium, and dark.

Now, these categories are further divided into many subcategories and hence it sometimes becomes confusing in choosing the right makeup products. So here is how you need to find your surface skin tone -

  • Fair - You are either very fair or have a porcelain complexion that gets burned easily when exposed to the sun and becomes red.

  • Light - You are yellowish or pale and burn and become pink when exposed to the sun. You might be paler during winters.

  • Medium - You have an average to wheatish skin tone and tans when exposed to the sun.

  • Tan - You are 1-2 shades darker than medium skin tone and have a brownish complexion and you tan easily.

  • Deep - you might be 1-2 shades darker than tan but slightly lighter than dark skin tone and you definitely tan more when exposed to the sun.

  • Dark - You are noticeably dark and tan very easily. You may be of African, Latin, or Indian descent.

3) Know Your Undertone -

Knowing your correct undertone is another most important step after finalizing your overtone/skin tone. Skin undertone refers to the color that comes from underneath the skin’s surface. Skin undertones are of three types – warm, neutral, and cool.

Undertones can be determined by the following simple tests -

  • Wrist Check - Check the color of your wrist veins. If they are blue or purple then you have a cool undertone. If they are green or olive in color then you are warm and if unable to determine the dominant color then you are neutral.

  • The white paper test - Place a white paper beside your face and look into a mirror in natural light. If you seem to look dull or pinkish then you have a cool undertone. If your skin appears more yellow, then you're probably warm. If there is no difference then you are neutral.

  • Colour of your dress -You have cool undertones if cool colors like blue, black, brown suits you. If you're warm-toned then shades like yellow, orange, tan, etc will suit you the best. If any and every shade suits you then you are neutral.

  • Blush test - If your cheeks turn pink while blushing then you definitely have a cool undertone.

  • Jewelry test - If your skin loves more favorable with gold jewelry then you are warm else if silver, platinum suits you more, then you are likely to have a cool undertone. If both look good on you then you are neutral.

4) Ensure With Swatches -

Once you know the skin color and undertone, your search for the right foundation shade narrows down considerably. Swatching out different foundation shades is the next important process. It helps in providing the perfect match.

Now people generally do swatches on their hands for the foundation which is completely wrong. Your hand and face complexion can never be the same and hence can only give you a wrong shade. Therefore always perform a swatch test on your jawline and neck. So here is how you need to do -

  • Shortlist three shades that seem to be very close to your skin tone.

  • Now take a small amount of foundation from each and draw short vertical lines on your jawline. Make sure you keep some space between each shade.

  • Let it oxidize for a min and then blend it with hands or a beauty blender gently.

  • The one that blends seamlessly with both your face and neck is the right one for you.

Now sometimes it happens that you might have 2 foundations that almost match with your skin tone. So to choose the one that’ll look best on you can be slightly tricky.

For this,

  • For this blend both the foundation on each side of your jawlines and then gently sweep a cotton pad soaked in makeup remover through the middle.

  • Neglect the shade that shows some difference between your foundation and bare skin.

  • In case both differ then repeat the complete cycle until you find your perfect matched foundation.

5) Foundations Should Be Season/Occasion Proof -

It’s not necessary that the foundation shade that blended well with your skin tone during winters should act the same in summers. During summers we usually have tanned skin or our skin tone tends to slightly become darker compared to winters. Hence you might need to switch your foundation to 1-2 darker to shade.

Similarly, during winters you need a more moisturizing foundation while during summers lightweight foundation would be the best. You also need to be cautious of choosing a foundation depending on the occasion you are going to wear it. For example, for parties and functions, it’s necessary that you wear something which is long-lasting and also provides good coverage. But if you are going to a gym or for some workout sessions then a breathable lightweight waterproof foundation with some SPF ( at least 30) shall be the right choice.

6) Take A Second Opinion -

It’s always good to take a second opinion by visiting any nearby particular brands makeup store like MAC, Maybelline, Colorbar, etc that you wish to try or invest in. They usually have good makeup experts as their staff and hence they can really help you in choosing the right product.

Once you get your perfect shade then you can repurchase it online in the future.

Some Important Tips For Flawless Finish

Finally here are a few small important tips that can help you achieve a more flawless and perfect base for your makeup.

  • Get to know when and where you are planning to wear the foundation like daily to the office or for some occasions etc.

  • Always switch your foundation if you feel it's not matching your skin tone anymore. This is normal as our skin tone tends to keep on changing especially during different seasons. Hence, don't wear the same foundation shade year-round.

  • In case you do not have the right shade of foundation you can definitely try mixing colors or shades to create the perfect shade for you.

  • Combine your foundation with a moisturizer to make it lightweight and not too heavy on your skin. Experiment with the ratio until you get a good balance of texture and coverage. This tip will also save some time while getting ready.

  • If you do not have an oil-free foundation then apply some loose powder or compact to give your face a matte finish.

  • Apply a primer before using a foundation to minimize your pores and to give a smooth finished look to your skin.

Foundation can make or break your complete look. It has the power to transform your naked acne-prone blemished skin to a flawlessly smooth finish. The struggle is real! So stay on target with these steps to choose a one that will work for your style and needs. The words cakey, mask-like, uneven, unnatural, etc shall never be a concern from now on. So go and purchase one right away and see the magic it does to your makeup look.

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