Unless you have naturally flawless skin (and let’s face it who does) the only way to create the illusion of perfect skin is starting with a foundation. There are two important rules to achieving the best results the first is to select the right product for your skin in the right shade, the second is to apply it correctly.
In terms of selecting the right product, my advice to you is to kiss a few frogs – by that I mean get out to your local department store or make-up boutique and try, try, try before you buy. Look for light-weight, long wearing products like Clinique’s Stay Matte Oil Free Make-up – which aren’t too heavy. In my experience the heavier the foundation, the more it ages you – look for something that isn’t going to emphasise the wrinkles.
In terms of shading it is important to test the suitability of your foundation in a natural light setting. Often the lighting at department store make-up counters can distort the way a shade looks on your skin. If appropriate, see if you can test your foundation near a window – or in a position where there is an abundance of natural light.
Natural light is also critical when applying your foundation. I like to use a stand-mirror which I position on a small table near my bedroom window. Before I apply my foundation I like to start with a bit of concealer under the eyes and around the sides of the nose. Some people like to use primer – I personally think it depends on the product you are using. With the Clinique Stay Matte Oil Free Make-up I had similar results with and without. It’s a personal thing – my advice is to try both and see which works for you.
After I’ve put my concealer, I like to dab a few drops of foundation across the forehead and along the bridge of my nose. I always use a make-up brush when applying my foundation. I find it gives me a more natural finish and reduces the amount of foundation I use. The key to a natural looking foundation is to brush out and down. So with the forehead start from the centre and brush outwards.
With the nose, cheeks and chin – the same rule applies, so dot the foundation around the side of the nose and along the jaw-line and then brush out and down making sure you extend the brush beyond the chin and down the neckline – you don’t need to reach your shoulders – but remember you are creating an illusion – so you want it to look blended with your natural colour.
If you are more into the “dewy” look – I recommend putting a shimmer product over the apples of your cheeks and along the forehead. If you want more of a matt look, you can finish it off with a lightweight sheer powder – which can add to a foundation’s staying properties.