Tips for Finding the Perfect Foundation Color Match

Finding the perfect foundation color match for your skin can be difficult. I remember back in middle school when all the girls started wearing makeup, there were the girls (I may have been one) who had the telltale line. Their face was much darker than their neck. Shudder. It wasn't a good look. 

But finding that perfect shade is harder than you think even if you know your skin tone. There are a few different considerations. This summer I had to get a new color because I had a tan and it took us four tries before we found the one that completely disappeared. That, of course, is the goal. Complete, non-obvious coverage. You shouldn't even know it's there.

Here are some tips for getting there:


Figure out what you need: Do you want a tinted moisturizer or a full coverage foundation? The distinction is important to understand. Foundation will give you a more "complete" look while a tinted moisturizer is lighter and more "natural." You should also know your skin type. Are you oily? Dry? Sensitive? If so, that will affect the kind of foundation you're looking for. Foundations can add moisture or come oil-free. There are also mineral foundations, which work on many skin types.

Go in person: This isn't a job for an online purchase unless you're just buying a replacement. Better yet? Have a professional help you find your perfect match. It isn't as simple as seeing a color and assuming. Depending on brand, there will be a variety of colors, and the medium in one collection might not be the same as the medium in another.

Know your skin: You skin's undertone can be:

  • Cool: Bare skin has a slightly pink tone.
  • Neutral: Bare skin looks peach or beige.
  • Warm: Bare skin has slightly yellow or golden tone.

Try, try, try: Again, the key is going to be trying again and again and not being afraid to fail. Make sure you're trying in good lighting and get a friend's honest and critical opinion. It will pay off.

How do you find your perfect foundation?

Image via stevendepolo/Flickr

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