Best Foundation Types for You
Choosing the right foundation can be as overwhelming as being told you can only buy one thing at a Black Friday sale. Where on Earth do you start?! With an overabundance of shades, finishes, formulas and coverages, choosing a foundation is just as personal as ordering your Starbucks coffee. That’s the precise reason foundation is one of the toughest makeup products to buy. The ultimate goal is to find a foundation that looks like your own skin, but better. You want to avoid the dreaded cakey look or the mask-like foundation line on your neck. In this post, I’m breaking down how to choose the best foundation for your skin type for us ladies over 40, simple tips, and some of my favorite foundation picks.
For some additional, fabulous makeup tips for women over 40, check out this post!
We all know that the main skin types are dry, oily, and combination. On top of that, you might be dealing with more specific issues like redness, hyper-pigmentation, eczema, acne and sensitivity. You should identify your specific skin concerns first, whether it’s a dermatological issue like eczema or simply wanting your skin to have more glow. Dewy foundations tend to work best on normal to dry skin types. Matte foundations are usually more suitable for combination to oily skin types. Typically, a satin finish is preferred on mature skin since the matte look can emphasize flaws and wrinkles.
When choosing your coverage level, ask yourself how much you want your natural skin to show. If you hate wearing makeup, you’re going to think a full-coverage foundation is too heavy. And as we’ve already discussed, with more mature skin, too much foundation can settle in all the wrong places. Unless you have significant discoloration or scarring, it’s best to stick with a lighter touch and opt for a sheer light to medium coverage because it’s buildable. I personally use tinted moisturizer because it hydrates while evening out my skin tone. I’ll then spot conceal for more coverage in specific areas. I find this to be the best way to have a fresh, youthful finish.
Skin Tone & Shade
How many times have you swatched foundation on your forearm, only to find that it’s all wrong when you get it on your face? That’s because this part of your body is a lot darker than your face. The best way to try to color match is to find a spot towards the center of your face and blend out towards the hairline so you match the sides of your cheeks. If you don’t want to test on your face, then apply potential shades to your chest. Don’t stress yourself out looking for an exact match, but always go with something slightly lighter because the color is going to shift throughout the day. Foundation oxidizes with wear and naturally gets darker with the mixture of elements and the oils on your face. Plus, you can always warm up your face with a little bronzer. Whichever method you choose, it’s important to test the foundation in good, natural lighting.
Undertones are the natural colors underneath the surface of your skin which are either warm, cool, or neutral. Unless you want to spend a lot of time color correcting, don’t fight against your skin’s natural undertones. If you have a warm complexion, go with a shade that has yellow undertones, and if your complexion is on the cool side, a foundation with pink undertones is your best bet. I personally tend to go with neutral shades since my face seems to have a little redness in certain areas and a little yellow in others.
How to Find Your Undertone
Look at the exposed areas of your body first. If your chest and shoulders tend to be more red and pink, it’s safe to say you have cool undertones. If you’re golden, peach, and yellow, you have warmer undertones. Keep in mind that this has nothing to do with how light or dark your complexion is. Another method is to look at the underside of your forearm. If your veins look more blueish, and you look better in silver jewelry, you’re probably on the cool side. If your veins have a greenish tone, and you look better in gold jewelry then it’s safe to say you’re on the warmer end of the spectrum.
Once you’ve identified your skin type, coverage needs, shade and undertone—you’re ready to choose a formula and application method. Keep scrolling for more information on that!
Do you have a holy grail foundation? Please share with us in the comments below! Don’t forget you can sign up for the newsletter to take advantage of some amazing resources here including a PDF with 20+ beauty tips to look younger! Thanks for reading!