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The Foundation Series: Get your shade right!

Updated: Oct 2, 2023

Choosing the right shade of foundation is crucial for achieving a natural and flawless makeup look

Below are some of my secrets to help you select the perfect foundation shade:

Determine Your Undertone

  • Skin undertones can be categorized as warm, cool, or neutral.

  • Warm undertones have hints of yellow or golden tones.

  • Cool undertones have hints of pink, red, or blue tones.

  • Neutral undertones have a balance of warm and cool tones.

Identify Your Skin Tone

  • Skin tones are generally categorized as fair, light, medium, tan, or deep.

  • Determine where your skin falls on this spectrum.

Consider Your Desired Finish

  • Some foundations offer a matte finish, while others provide a dewy or luminous finish. Choose a foundation based on your preference for the overall look.

Consider Seasonal Changes

  • Your skin tone can change slightly with the seasons due to sun exposure, so you may need different foundation shades for summer and winter.

Always!!! Test Shades in Natural Light

  • Natural light provides the most accurate representation of how a foundation shade will appear on your skin.

  • Apply swatches of foundation to your jawline or the side of your face and step outside to assess the color.

Choose a Few Shades to Test

  • Start with shades that you believe match your undertone and skin tone.

  • It's often a good idea to select a couple of shades that seem close to your skin color for comparison.

*I like to wear a few different shades and document throughout the day which one I like more and which one I feel has "settled" better into a seamless finish.

Swatch and Blend

  • Apply small amounts of each shade to your jawline or the side of your face.

  • Blend the shades into your skin and observe which one disappears seamlessly, leaving no visible line of demarcation.

*Remember to step back, and look at the rest of your body as well.. like with me, the skin tone on my face is generally 3 - 4 shades lighter than my arms and chest, I then have to go a bit darker than the skin tone on my face when choosing a foundation shade, this way my face looks like it belongs to the same body.

Ask for Professional Help

  • If you're unsure about your undertone or finding the right shade, visit a makeup store or counter where a makeup artist can assist you.

*MAC counters are great for this.

Avoid Testing on Your Hand or Wrist

  • The skin on your hand or wrist may have a different tone than your face, so it's not the best place to swatch foundations. Your jawline is where your complexion is the most even as well.

Check for Oxidation

  • Some foundations may oxidize or change color slightly after application. Allow the foundation to sit for a few minutes and observe if it changes.

Sample Sizes

  • Always ask for some samples, and take your own containers with you.

  • If available, opt for sample or travel-sized foundation products to try before committing to a full-sized bottle.

* Why would you spend R1500 on a foundation when you have not even tested it and worn it for at least a day?

Remember that it's perfectly normal for your skin to have subtle variations in color, so don't stress about finding an exact match.

The goal is to choose a foundation shade that closely complements your skin tone and undertone, providing a natural and harmonious look.


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