This post is geared towards those who are just getting into makeup. I’m not talking about teenagers here either. I have found that in the African American community, many WOC (women of color) like to experiment with eyeshadows and lipsticks, but they get shy when it comes to foundation. I can see why…if you go into your average drugstore, the color choices for WOC just aren’t plentiful. So many WOC either forgo foundation or choose one that just doesn’t work well for them. A friend who is getting into makeup asked me, how do I know if I need foundation? Well that’s a very good question. Because everybody doesn’t “need” foundation.
Let’s start with me as an example…I feel that I need foundation. 10 years ago I didn’t need foundation, I just wanted it. The best way I can explain it is…foundation is used so that your skin looks flawless. It evens out your skin tone. It covers up any blemishes. If you happen to have flawless skin, I would still recommend a foundation if you’re doing other parts of your face. It brings the whole look together. It’s very noticeable if you have on eyeshadow, blush and lips, but your skin isn’t pulled together.
There are many types of foundations. And that’s where the fun begins. And the challenge. I can’t tell you the best foundation for you. We all have different skin, tones and undertones, and different preferences. Even though I don’t currently use this product right now, I recommend it to anybody as a great starter foundation…and that’s the Bare Minerals foundation. I recommend this mainly because it gives you the flawless look but is good for your skin. It can be applied as light coverage or up to full coverage. Plus if you get the starter kit, it comes with two shades that you can mix to come up with your perfect match. I recommend it for all skin types. Click here to go to Sephora for the picture listed.
Aside from that, it’s gonna take a whole lot of trial and error. I don’t have a recommendation on if you should start at the drugstore or at the cosmetics counter. It all depends on your personality type…you have people who like to bargain shop and people who like to get in and get out…if you like to bargain shop, then you may wanna start at the drugstore. I recommend stores like Walgreens, CVS, Rite-Aid because all of those stores have good return policies for cosmetics. If you don’t quite have the patience for a lot of trial and error, then I suggest hitting up your department store and having the cosmetics lady/man try products out on you. Be prepared to buy some products, they don’t like to make your face up for free. And the department stores usually have good return policies, but it doesn’t hurt to ask before you pay. If you are blessed to have an Ulta (we have one coming soon!!!) or a Sephora store near you then they are great places as well. I’ve never been inside of either, but I would think they have associates who can answer your questions. I know Ulta has a drugstore side and a high-end side, so you have the best of both worlds. And they have better selection than your average drugstore. They both also have good return policies.
I haven’t tried enough brands to say, start here or something like that. But I have used enough foundations in my day, to think that I know a lil something something. In highschool I started out with Cover Girl, and I still think it’s a good place to start. Here are just a few tips for choosing a foundation:
- determine your skin type…are you oily, dry, combination?
- determine the type of coverage you want…many people have several foundations for different occasions. For example, you may wear just a tinted moisturizer on Saturdays when you’re running errands, but you may wear a long-wear foundation during your work week.
- have a good set of quality brushes…the brushes make the difference. DO NOT use the applicators that come with the foundation!!! You will be doing yourself a disservice!!! Invest in a good quality brush set! Click here for my favorite brushes. I highly recommend a complete set but if you can’t swing that yet, at least get a couple of good face brushes. Like this set here. You can have a great brush make a cheap product work well, and you can have an expensive product but without a quality brush for application, you’ll look a mess.
- last but not least, know that you may find the “perfect” foundation and then something will happen and cause your skin to change. That’s ok, once you know your basics on foundation you can use that info to go with you for the rest of your life.