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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Make-up: Liquid Foundation

Some people use it, some people don't. It's as simple as that. There are also those who can't live without it. Whatever the reason it is that one uses it, which type you use depends on your skin condition, the environment that you will be in, and the level of coverage that you desire.

Basically there are three types: powder, liquid and cream. Degree of coverage depends on:

  1. brand
  2. texture
  3. application method
  4. amount of product applied
  5. usage of skin base/primer

I'll have to be honest in terms of my lack of experience in the field of cream foundations - I only know that due to the more emollient texture, it works best on dry skin and/or in dry weather.

When purchasing foundations, opt for mineral formulas if possible, because they provide better coverage and are much "healthier" thank regular foundations. In contrast with regular foundations, mineral make-up is made of ... minerals, and are thus more natural than the regular ones, and in turn don't damage the skin so much in terms of clogging the pores and aging the skin.

Liquid foundation is the most popular option, and it's the foundation I use most of the time. I used to just slap it on, but I've found a weird but effective way of applying it.

If you're expecting to take lots of photos, especially with flash, avoid HD foundations, and other foundations that contain silicone and SPF, as the light-reflecting particles will a) leave a white cast over your face, b) wash out the color on your face and c) make your face look patchy.

How do you know if a shade of foundation is right for you? It would be advised that you give the foundation a couple of hours of a test run. Apply some on your jawline, then continue your shopping for about two hours.

If it doesn't change color and blends perfectly and suits your skin tone, that's the one. If it turns darker or orangey, it means you have acidic skin. If this happens, opt for a foundation that is one or two shades lighter than your original skin tone. It would be safer to test it as well before purchasing.

However, if you purchased a wrong shade of foundation, fret not - you could use it as a colored concealer or as Queenie Chan a.k.a. BeautyQQ says, you can use it as a highlighter or a contour product.

Products & tools:
  • liquid foundation in a shade that matches your skin tone [Maybelline Clear Smooth Aqua Gel Foundation in 12 Natural]
  • water
  • face primer [Kate Covering Concealer for Pores]
  • foundation brush or stippling brush, opt for artificial hair brushes as they will not absorb as much product as natural hair brushes, or use a cosmetic sponge instead [Manicare Cosmetica Foundation Brush]
  • powder brush with soft bristles [generic brand small face brush]
  • powder, pressed or loose, translucent or skin toned, preferably with a puff or sponge puff [Pigeon Compact Baby Powder in Beige]
Kate Covering Concealer for Pores and Benefit's Porefessional are translucent creams that dry as a powder, and functions to fill in the pores, making them less obvious, especially if used under foundation.

Put on a good moisturizer, and if you have a primer, use it - it will help fill in your pores, smoothing the surface of the skin and help to achieve a smoother finish. A small amount will do. Smooth the product upwards so that they will fill the pores, then always remember to smooth the hairs back down.

I filled an old toner spray bottle with water for make-up uses.

Dampen your brush, but don't soak it. It should just feel slightly moist to the touch. If you're using a sponge, soak it in the water, then squeeze out all the excess water.

Squeeze/pump your foundation out onto the back of your hand. You could mix a few shades if you need. The back of your hand because the warmth of your body will help "melt" the product.

Dip your brush/sponge/fingers into the foundation "pool" and dot the product randomly all over your face, or wherever you need/want coverage. Try to keep the dots all even, as in about the same amount of product in each dot.

Using your preferred tool, blend the product evenly. Touch up wherever necessary, and apply another layer if level of coverage desired is not achieved. The dotting and blending technique helps avoid cakey foundation. Remember, the last brush stroke should always be downward/in the direction in which your fine facial hairs grow.

Tip: I tried having the foundation dry up on my skin while I was taking photos, so rewetting it with a mist of water might help.

Take your translucent or beige powder on a puff, then press the powder onto where you apply your foundation. Pressing and rolling on the powder with a puff instead of brushing it on with a brush helps seal the foundation and also helps minimize the appearance of large pores. Sometimes you pickup and apply too much powder - don't worry about that.

Lightly dust off any excess powder. It would be better to seal in everything first before dusting anything off. Brushing on your powder will inevitably "move" your carefully applied foundation. If you really must use a brush, pat/press it onto your skin instead of brushing it all over.

That's how I do my foundation now. Other people might object, but I find this better than "starting from the center of the face", because I find that doing that makes my pores look cakey (personal opinion). This technique gives me more of an airbrushed (but not completely) finished than my previous methods.

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