Foundation—it’s the all-important canvas for the rest of our makeup, but when it comes to technique, it always seems to be shrouded in mystery. Between what products to use and how to use them, it’s something you’ve got to get down to a science in order to achieve that flawless, yet miraculously natural-looking skin. Foundation is without a doubt the most anxiety-inducing product in our makeup bags. Unlike, say, eyeliner, where you have a bit of wiggle room (it’s not smudged, it’s smoky), when foundation is done wrong, there’s no hiding the mistake. (No wonder all those much more approachable BB creams have become so popular!). Forget what you think you know about foundation—it’s come a long way since the cakey, masklike stuff your mom used to wear. Modern ones feel as lightweight as moisturizer. Celebs look so great on the red carpet because they’re usually wearing foundation. It makes anyone’s skin look flawless. So, here are a few tips to apply foundation as a pro:


  • Remove Makeup and Cleanse. It’s best to make sure the skin is completely clean and prepped before applying moisturizer. Treat the skin with a cotton pad and cleansing water which can be used as both a makeup remover and a way to prep the skin. This sensitive cleansing water almost always removes leftover makeup, dirt, and grime from the skin.
  • Moisturize to Prime the Skin. Wait five minutes for the lotion to set before applying your foundation.
  • Find your perfect colour. Test foundation on your jawline and check it in the daylight. The colour is correct if it disappears without blending.
  • Get the right tools. There are three primary means of applying foundation: with your fingers, with a sponge, or with a brush. Although there is debate between which is the best means of application, there are benefits to each. Putting on your makeup with your fingers allows for better blending, while applying it with a brush helps keep the spread of bacteria (and therefore acne) to a minimum. But it is advised to use a foundation brush and apply the foundation starting in the centre of the face and blend out.


  • Put on your foundation. Regardless of whether your foundation is a liquid, cream, or powder, it should be applied first in the centre of your face. Add a few dabs to either cheek near your nose, your chin, and a bit on your forehead.
  • Touch up on difficult areas. If you do have particularly uneven skin in certain areas, acne, dark spots, or under-eye circles, use your foundation to touch up on these areas.
  • Tap on concealer (use something that’s super pigmented) to hide any blemishes or redness that’s coming through.
  • Finish up on your foundation. If you haven’t yet already, apply concealer to troubled areas on your face. Finish up your entire face by applying your foundation with setting powder. This is a translucent, matte powder that helps prevent your foundation from sliding around while preventing oil build-up from showing through.
  • Apply foundation everywhere. No, really. Everywhere. Seriously, it’s not just for your face. You probably already know to blend foundation past your jawline and onto the neck, but if your décolletage is showing, you’ll want to blend the colour there too. Plus, don’t forget the ears! Fair-skinned complexions in particular are susceptible to redness on the ears. Also, be sure to blend a light layer of foundation over your eyelids and lips. This will help your eye shadow and lipstick shades go on truer to their shades.


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