How to Find the Powder Foundation That Matches Your Skin Tone

Shopping for face powder? We can help. Use our tips to match your skin to the right powder foundation

These tips will help you match your skin with the right powder foundation

Much like a house needs a foundation to stand on, you need foundation in your makeup routine. Whether you prefer it in powder or liquid form, foundation acts as a base and aids in making your face look natural while applying blush, eyeshadow, etc. Though this sounds simple enough, shopping for the best powder foundation fills every makeup shopper with dread. With so many choices for different skin tones, not to mention shopping for the best foundation for oily or dry skin, it can be overwhelming. Then there's the scenario that happens to many makeup wearers; buying a shade you think is right only to have your face look too pale, too dark, or even have an orange or pink look. There's also the seasons to consider. If you're more tan in the summer, your go-to light foundation no longer looks right. The opposite is possible in the winter.

So, what to do? Sure, you could just go fresh-faced the rest of your life, but what's the fun in that? It's time to get back into the makeup game and armed with these tips, shopping for your next foundation will no longer make you want to run and hide.

So... What Skin Tone Do You Really Have?

The natural color of your complexion is what makes up your skin tone, and it's what helps you determine what foundation shade to use. Skin tones vary from light to deep. Check below to see what skin tone fits you.

  • Fair skin: If you're fair skinned, you look quite pale, even in the summer months (meaning you're more at risk for sunburn than others) and when you're not ill. People with fair skin are often described as having porcelain skin. If you've been told that a time or two in your life and have a mostly pale appearance, you have fair skin.
  • Light skin: If you're light skinned, you also have a pale appearance, but not as much as those who have fair skin.
  • Medium skin: If you're medium skinned, your skin isn't too light or too dark. You fall somewhere in the middle.
  • Deep skin: If you have dark-hued skin or tan easily, you have a darker skin tone.

Now That You Know... Find Your Undertone

Knowing your skin tone is half the battle. You won't find your perfect foundation just because you have fair, medium, light, or deep skin. There's one more thing you need to know about yourself before finding out what foundation shade matches you and that's your skin's undertone.

What are undertones, exactly? Well, undertones are the colors that pop through your skin, such as the color of your veins and the overall hues that make up your complexion. There are three types of undertones people have: cool, warm, and neutral. If you have cool undertones, your skin has hints of blue, pink, or red. If you have warm undertones, your skin will have a yellow, peach, or even golden tinge to it. But if you have neutral undertones, your skin may have a mix of both warm and cool undertones. Many who are unsure about the undertones of their skin fall into this category.

Aside from simply guessing what undertone your skin has, try these ways to figure out if your skin is more warm, cool, or neutral.

  • Look at your veins: As said above, your veins play a role in your skin's undertone. Take a look at the veins in your wrist in good lighting. Do they have a purple or bluish color? Then it's a sign you have a cool undertone. If your veins appear to be green, then your skin veers more towards a warm undertone. If after looking you're unsure, then you most likely have a neutral undertone.
  • Hold a sheet of white paper to your face: Putting a plain white sheet of paper, or anything stark white really, up to your face will create a cast of color on your skin. If your face appears to be pink or blue, your have a cool undertone. If your face appears yellow, you have a warm undertone. Finally, if your face has a gray color to it against a white background, you have a neutral undertone.
  • Look through your jewelry collection: This sounds silly, but the jewelry you wear can also help you know what undertone you have. Do you find yourself wearing primarily silver jewelry because it looks best on you? Or do you lean more towards gold jewelry? If it's the former, you have a cool undertone, but if it's the latter, you have a warm undertone. If you own both kinds of jewelry and they both look great on you, or you don't notice a difference, then you have a more neutral undertone.

Finding a foundation is hard work, but it's worth it once you find the one that best complements you. Get to know the true makeup of your skin (and of course do so in the best possible lighting) and you're on your way to looking like your most natural, beautiful self. Now you just need to learn how to apply your powder foundation correctly!

Resources — L'Oréal Paris, Allure, BeautyBlender 


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