Base Makeup Basics Part 4 : Types of Foundation | How to choose the right foundation for your skin type
Posted by Corallista | Posted in Face, Makeup Basics for Beginners | Posted on 06-07-2012
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After a small break from this series, I’m back with the most important part of base makeup ~ Foundation!
Many of us spend a lot of time, money and effort in looking for the perfect foundation, those who are lucky find their match after a few trials but some of us never find the perfect shade/tone/coverage/finish. Let me tell you a little secret. Its not always the product itself that determines the final outcome but the application techniques as well! I hope Part 4 and Part 5 of this series will help you find the right foundation for yourself and also give you a few pointers on how to apply it well for the best results!
Lets start with the different types of foundation -
Foundations can be categorized based on 3 things : texture, coverage and finish.
Based on coverage , there are 3 types of foundations :
- Sheer coverage : These give light coverage that is just sufficient to even out skin tone but may not hide pigmentation, acne, dark spots etc. It is suitable for those with spotless skin or for daily wear when you want a natural coverage. A great alternative to Sheer foundation is Tinted Moisturizer which basically does the same job.
- Medium coverage : As the name suggests, a medium coverage foundation will cover most of the pigmentation and spots but may be not the heavy pigmentation. Medium coverage foundations can give very flawless, natural results when combined with the right finish and are most versatile.
- Full coverage : Full coverage foundations are for those with heavy pigmentation, marks or spots and are meant for special occasions like functions, events or parties. I find them a little heavy for day-wear or regular use but they are really good if you are to be photographed and pictures tend to exaggerate imperfections.
Based on Texture, the categorization is similar to concealers with a few additions :
- Liquid : These are very versatile and and can be super moisturizing or oil-free/matte finish and sheer to full coverage depending on the formula. They can be applied either with fingers or with makeup tools like a foundation brush or a makeup sponge. They can also be sheered out by mixing with moisturizer to give a sheer tinted moisturizer-like effect.
- Cream : Cream foundations are a little thicker in texture than liquid foundation and mostly give medium to full coverage. These can also be applied with either fingers or makeup tools.
- Stick : These are super easy to apply and great for travel purposes. One just needs to swipe the stick across the and blend with fingers – easy and quick application! These can be sheer, medium to full coverage depending on the formula.
- Cake Powder/Compact : These are powder foundations that come in a pan form and are best suited for oily skin as the powder mattifies and controls oil. Wet and dry compacts also fall in this category which can be used with a wet applicator for heavier coverage and dry as compact setting powder.
- Mousse : Mousse foundations have a light, whipped creamy formula that is very easy to apply and blend. These generally come in a jar/pot form and are best applied with fingers.
- Loose powder : Loose powder foundations like mineral based powders are best for oily skin as they mattify and control shine for a long time. The coverage can vary from sheer to medium depending on the formula. If applied too much, they can give a cakey, powdery finish to the skin so its best to use these with a light hand.
Based on Finish :
- Matte : Best suited for oily skinned women, matte finish foundations give a shine-free finish. All powder/mineral loose powder foundations fall in this category. Some examples of matte finish foundation are MAC Studio Fix Fluid, Clinique Anti Blemish-Solutions liquid makeup, Revlon Colorstay, Avon mousse foundation.
- Dewy : Best suited for normal-to-dry skin types, dewy finish foundation leave behind a sheen that gives the look of healthy, moisturized skin. They are more moisturizing than matte foundation in general and hence not suited for oily skin. Some examples include Mac Mineralize Satin Finish, Mac Studio Sculpt, The Body Shop extra virgin Minerals and Lancome Teint Miracle.
- Demi-matte : It is the most natural finish of all, not entirely matte but not really dewy either. This works for a variety of skin types. Some really good demi-matte finish foundations are MAC Matchmaster, L’Oreal Paris Infallible, Inglot YSM Cream foundation, Bourjois healthy mix, Loreal Matte Morphose.
How to choose the right foundation type for your skin
You need to consider the following factors while choosing a foundation for yourself :
- Skin type : Dry, Normal, Combination or Oily. Dry skinned women should opt for foundation with rich, creamy, moisturizing formula with dewy finish that does not cling to dry areas or enhance flaky bits. Its best to stick to liquid/cream formula and avoid matte finish/powder foundation. Combination skin types should go for oil-free, lighter formulas and avoid very heavily moisturizing foundations as well, make sure to moisturize the dry areas before applying foundation. Oily skinned women should opt for oil-free, non-comodogenic formulations. Powder foundations are a good option for those with very oily skin.
- Coverage required : Do you have heavy pigmentation/dark spots that need to be covered up? Do you need a foundation for special occasions like a wedding or a function? If yes, then you need a full coverage foundation. If you need foundation for everyday wear or you have fairly spotless skin with minor pigmentation, a medium coverage foundation would work well for you. If you are new to makeup and really conscious about putting on makeup or have really good skin, a sheer foundation is what’s best for you. Sometimes, foundations have a flexible formula that applies medium coverage but can be built up by applying more product – these serve the dual purpose of being everyday foundations and special occasion foundations as well.
- Sun Exposure : Do you need foundation for day time? Are you exposed to the sun for more than just a few minutes everyday? If yes, then go for foundations with SPF for some extra protection. Do you only wear for evening parties/functions? If yes, you can pick a foundation without SPF, it will show up better in pics without the white case that SPF products tend to give.
I have not included Finish as a deciding factor because I think the texture and coverage of the foundation is more important and the finish can be altered by adding powder on top to mattify or add some highlighter to fake dewiness as long as the formula is suited well to one’s skin type. For eg. if you are oily skinned but want a natural, dewy finish foundation ~ don’t go for a more moisturizing formula just for its finish. Opt for a demi-matte/matte finish and add some powder highlighter on the high points to get a soft glow to the face.
Also read :
- Part 1: Face Primers | How to choose the right primer | How to apply Primer | Primers in India
- Part 2 : Types of Concealers | How to choose the right under-eye concealer | Concealers in India
- Part 3 : How to apply Stick concealer ~ Step-by-step picture Tutorial
Disclaimer : This post is accurate to the best of my knowledge. All information presented here has been written by me and not picked up from the web (Except for the image). Kindly do not copy or reproduce the information given in this post.