Finding the right foundation for your face is one of the most important parts of your makeup routine. There’s a reason foundation is called, well, foundation. It quite literally lays the groundwork for your entire makeup look.

Determining the best foundation for your skin will give your skin a more flawless, natural finish so you can crush any makeup look you desire. 

Learn Your Skin Type

If you want to find a foundation that compliments your skin and is comfortable to wear, your first step is learning your skin type. Your sin type helps you determine if a foundation is the right match for your skin. There are four different skin types: dry, oily, combination, or normal.

If you don’t already know which category you fall into, take a day to observe your skin and how it feels or looks throughout the day. Dry skin often feels tight and uncomfortable. Oily skin tends to have a natural shine. If you experience a combination of dry skin and oily skin, perhaps in different areas on your face, you would fall into the combination skin type category. If you don’t find your skin feeling dry or oiling, your skin type is considered normal.

When you go shopping for foundation, keep your skin type in mind. Products will list which skin type the foundation works best with. You’ll want to opt for a product that compliments your skin type.

Product Features to Look for

In addition to skin type, there are two major features to look out for from your foundation: coverage and finish. In both features, you want to keep the end result of your makeup look in mind.

There are three levels of coverage in a foundation: light, medium, and full. Determine what you want your foundation to do to determine which coverage you’re looking for, such as evening out your skin tone or covering up blemishes and discoloration.

Many foundations offer buildable coverage, which gives you a lot of room to work with. You’ll often find foundations that offer light to medium coverage or medium to full coverage. This lets you use just one product that can meet your needs no matter what type of coverage you’re looking for.

Another aspect of coverage to consider is longevity. If you need your foundation to last you a 10-12 hour day, you want to look for a product that is long-wearing. If you only wear foundation for a short period of time during the day, a long-wearing foundation might not be a necessary feature to look for.

The last feature to consider is the finish of your foundation. There are three types of finishes you will find in foundation products: matte, dewy, or satin. Matte foundations give skin a dryer appearance and work best with oily or combination skin to hide the skin’s natural shine. Dewy foundations give skin a heavy glow, which works best on skin that is naturally dry. Satin foundations are an in-between finish compared to matte and dewy finishes. Satin finishes are considered a great option for any skin type.

Tips for Shade Matching

No matter what features you look for in a product, no foundation will look good on your skin if you’re wearing the wrong shade. There are many factors to take into consideration when finding your perfect match.

Whether you’re shopping in-store or online, you need to determine the undertones of your skin to find the best match for you. There are three types of undertones: warm, cool, and neutral. Warm skin tones have golden or yellow undertones while cool skin tones had pink or blue undertones. Neutral skin tones have a combination of warm and cool colors.

But how do you determine your skin’s undertones? Turn your arm over and look at your wrist in natural lighting. If your veins are golden or have a green tint, you have warm undertones. If your veins look blue or purple, you have cool undertones. If you notice a combination of these tints, you have neutral undertones. 

There is a lot of discussion about where on your body is the best place to shade match when shopping for a foundation in-person. Your best bet is to test your foundation color against your chest. While the back of your hand or underside of your arm can work, your chest will give you a better idea of which shade works for you.