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Saturday, January 3

How to find your foundation online? & How to choose foundation color?

The best place - beauty forums (Everyday Minerals forum, Makeuptalk Mineral Makeup forum). Just post a picture (preferably taken in daylight, with slight overcast and not in direct sunlight) of yourself and ask for advice. People are kind.

Because pictures are not always trustworthy and every computer screen is different from the other - to be quite sure just go to your nearest MAC counter and ask the consultant to match your skin tone. The MAC skin color codes are often useful when looking for the right foundation because it's such a big and well known international makeup company with substantially large assortment of colors. Some ppl have even gathered comparative information in excel datasheets and are kind enough share them with all (this MAC skin tone is this and that in EDM, Meow etc).

The smart thing to do is to order samples in colors that are suggested to you or if you trust the descriptions, you think that will match your skin tone.

Lighting is very important when choosing one's foundation. The sensible approach would be testing the foundation in daylight first. The stuff the salesgirl puts on you in store - boy have I been disappointed when I got home! Artificial lighting tunes down the orange color and as you arrive home with your new foundi - you discover you look like an orange.
One should always test the foundation in daylight before buying it.
But even this may be difficult. This is a picture taken this afternoon: one near a window facing south and the other facing north. The one taken near the northern window is considerably more bluish...

Differences in lighting play hell with the swatches I make... pictures taken during summer and pictures taken now - there's a world of difference.

It's important to choose the foundation to match your neck, not the face; test it on your neck or decolleté, not on your cheek or forehead. Even the jawline is not very trustworthy imho, because of the shadow. You have to use a smaller mirror in order to see properly - and mirrors reflect light.

Here's an "in your face!" to all of those obnoxious "know-it-all" ppl in Estonian forums, that think no one can possibly be whiter then MAC's fairest:

MAC Studio Fix Fluid in NC15 and NW15 (always thought that NW means neutral warm or smth but it's actually the "cool" color group - how can it possibly be considered a cool tone - it's friggin' orange!)

So shut up about the MAC's fairest!
It's either yellow or orange and therefore totally unsuitable for us pale gurls.

The salesladies at The Body Shop were also very nice and provided me with samples of their lightest foundations: Moisture Foundation SPF15 in 02 and 03. Tried them on my neck and the result fully matched my expectations - too orange. The coverage is somewhat lesser then the one of MAC but this was to be expected - it's basically a moisturizer. I gave the swatches 10 minutes before taking these pictures:
The upper picture gives a good idea how horrible I look without foundation. Lots of hormonal blemishes and impurities.
And on the decolleté:

The funny thing is I went like aargh - my perfect match! when I saw the swatch of No 03 on my skin - it was like sooo perfect in the store. And as I got home and swatched in the daylight - all the magic was suddenly gone. I think the No 3 would be quite passable during the summer though.

Kui kurdad kusagil ilufoorumis, et emamaal ei müüda piisavalt heledaid toone, hüppab alati põõsast välja keegi, kes teatab, et loomulikult on: mine vaata vaid MACi letti. AGA mida pole seda pole. NW15 on oranž ja NC15 on kollane.

Kui aega leian, siis kontrollin ka väidet, et Max Factor Lasting Peformance 100 olevat ülivalgele nahale sobiv. Kui õieti mäletan siis see oli suhteliselt kollane...


Anna said...

This helped me so much, thank you! I love your blog.

Siilike said...

All my pleasure - love to help

Anonymous said...

how dyu noe wich colour is YOUR colour? liek, there may be brez buh u js dont noe.

Harakas said...

i think i need translation...?

Liz said...

I am pale, but my undertones are pink. Same as with my neck. It's rather flushed. So would I get Nw15 or Nc15??

LiisK said...

Hi Liz, If you're as pale as me, try to get swatches of MAC's NC10 and NW10. Those are not available at my stores.
Since the NW (contains red, meant for us cool types - go figure) makes us look like oranges, I'd say aim for the more neutral one. I always try to neutralize pinkness in my face - it disturbs me, I look like Miss Piggy and I hate it :S, I see no point in emphasizing it by picking a pink/orange foundi.
I have also discovered that all sorts of fair Olive foundations are the best because of their added green - helps to counteract redness.

Anonymous said...

Dear Liis,
I am also paler than pale with yellow undertones, and I've always found it painstakingly hard to find a foundation in the right shade.
Have you tried Smashbox' High Definition Healthy FX Foundation in the shade Fair F0?
I almost burst into tears when the MUA put it on me - finally after all those years of hating my pale skin a perfect match!
(And it's oil-free so girls suffering from Rosacea can use it as well)
Best wishes, Anja :)

LiisK said...

Hi Anja, I am so happy for you - it's marvelous to finally find something that's perfect! I'll keep your recommendation in mind and maybe some day test the product myself.

Smashbox is not available in our stores and it costs 35 euro on Strawberrynet :S, this is unfortunately quite unreachable for my budget.

Anonymous said...

Dear Liis,
Smashbox is insanely expensive here in DK as well (and Strawberrynet is a joke after they marked up their prices a while back!) - I found the answer to my Smashbox needs to be or sometimes

Normally the (Smashbox) items are about half price compared to buying them in the shops here in DK - but I have sometimes been lucky to find stuff to 1/3 of the prices. :-D

I've made friends with a very nice lady that has a shop on eBay UK - if you want to I could put you in touch with her. She always gives me nice discounts. :-)

I work right next to a Smashbox shop - I would be most happy to send you a sample of the F0 FX Foundation?

I have sent you an e-mail to the e-mail address listed here on your blog - please send me your postal address if you feel like it then I can send you a sample tomorrow or Tuesday.

Take care, Anja

LiisK said...

Dear Anja,

Thank you! I'd love to do a post about Smashbox' fair foundation :). I doubt if am going to buy it myself - I have a drawer full of mineral makeup I should use up first - but it would be indeed lovely to know, that should I choose so, I'd have a perfectly matching liquid foundation just waiting for me.
Have a nice day!


Anonymous said...

Kas sa oled proovinud Grimasit? Olen tähele pannud, et neil on isegi valged toonid (nojah, toodavad ka grimmitooteid).

Rosanna said...

Hi! My skin has neutral undertones and is dry and - well - fair. I found a perfect color match in Yves Saint Laurent Teint Resist 01. True Match N1 is a better match in winter, and a lot cheaper. They are really VERY close.
MAC is useless... especially if you have neutral undertones like I do. Neutral means having both yellow AND cool, so the MAC foundation for cool skins is too yellow and the one for warm skins is too pink.
Another possible candidate - I am yet to buy this one - is Shiseido Lifting Foundation. I've also purchased the lightest shades of Revlon ColorStay, 150 and 110 namely, but I haven't received them yet. Given that I live in Italy, I was surprised to actually find a YSL foundation as fair as my skin. I actually had to order True Match and Revlon ColorStay from the UK. You know, everybody here is either dark or seems to confuse foundation with bronzer eheheh

eva said...

I have also quite pale skin in wintertime. (For some reason it tans quite well, so it's medium colored in summer). I'm sure I'm not as pale as you, but close.

I have done some foundation hunting lately, and my best picks were Diorskin Nude (021 for me), Calvin Klein Infinite Matte (201, soft beige) and Flormar Perfect Coverage Foundation 103. All of these have some lighter shades than my picks :)

The Calvin KLein foundation was especially recommended for pale girls at Makeupalley, so I decided to try it. It's only 5.50 at Fragrancedirect now.

LiisK said...

Thanks for all the great recommendations :) I've tried Grimas' lightest - it looks white even on me - I think Grimas products are meant to be mixed on the spot - they do not carry much foundation colors, at least not in my store. Coverage was very decent - I think those products are meant for professional use.

Rosanna, thanks for the tips :), it's comforting to know that other people share the same predicament. Maybe one day we can get our message out there :).

Eva, I'd like to read your review on the CK foundation :) and Flormar? Is that not a very affordable supermarket brand? In that case I'm definitely checking it out :)

Rosanna said...

I've ordered CK foundation today and got it for 13 euro shipping (from the UK included). I'll keep you posted :)

Rosanna said...

About the Smashbox foundation: I've tried it and it has strong pink undertones. So I didn't buy it (my undertones are neutral).

Grete said...

Ma olen nii palju kuulnud, et NW/NC15 on jäänud paljudele heleda nahatooniga inimestele liiga tumedaks. Imelik, et nad heledamat ei tee. NC/NW10 võiks vähemalt viimane olla, sest see oleks juba palju parem.

Lexa said...

I believe I am the same color as you:) NW15 is so orange. MAC needs to make NC10 again for us!! Have you tried Revlon colorstay normal/dry in ivory? Or L'oreal true Match N1? these are the only colors I can find that really match.
Good luck, I know it's so hard to find the right color!

Rosanna said...

Hi Lexa,

YSL Teint Resist 1
L'Oreal True Match N1
ColorStay 110
are my matches,
you can see them on my face here:
Calvin Klein is too dark.

Tolmu said...

Actually I really like the CK foundation (and the tinted moisturizer I ordered along with it!). The foundation gives medium coverage, but somehow melts into the skin and seems really natural! It is not dead matte, but not shiny and glowy either. Hard to describe. And it has great staying power and feels very light on the skin. The lighter shades are gone from FragranceDirect, but readily and cheaply available on eBay. I'll get some backups!

About the Flormar foundation, I like it too. It is a bit on the heavier side, but not bad for it's price. I think it is very similar to Bourjois Bio-Detox, that has been praised a lot.

As for Flormar being cheap, that's correct! The foundation was around 5 euros in an L Cosmetics store. Anyway, I don't think it is a crap brand. It comes from Turkey and when I was in Turkey this spring I notices Flormar was sold everywhere, much like Lumene here. I've tried their eye pencils (good!) and nail polish (superb!) and the brand has grown on me.

Would love to hear your opinions!

Adele said...

Usun, et oleme üsna sama tooni. Kõigist maailma jumestuskreemidest sobis mulle vaid Make Up For Ever Mat Velvet #15. Kuna nahk on korras, siis hetkel kannan seda vaid laugudele ja silma alla, mujale õrnalt puudrit. Ohjah, kohati tundus täiesti võimatu leida midagi niii heledale nahale, kuid lõpuks ikkagi vedas :)

LiisK said...

Adele, Tänud veel ühe potentsiaalse kandidaadi nimetamise eest :)

Thank you Tolmu! I have not seen Flormar foundations in local stores, has any other Estonian seen it recently?

Adele said...

Liis, kui kunagi kaupa teeme, toon kindlasti sulle ka seda MUFE proovida :)) See on imeõhuke, ometi kattev ja loomulik toode... Minu teada Eestis saab proovida/tellida Fimage-nimelise ettevõtte kaudu, pood on neil vist Mustika keskuses. Ise aga ostsin eBay'st.

LiisK said...

Proovin alati väga hea meelega :), aitäh!

Tolmu said...

Mina nägin Flormari jumestuskreeme Viru keskuse bussiterminalis L-Kosmeetika poes. Ise ostsin Tartu maanteelt L-Kosmeetika poest.

LiisK said...

Loodetavasti ei viska nad mind siis välja, kui oma testripotsikuga ligi hiilin :D

Anonymous said...

i also have big problems with finding a matching foundation, in stores the lights are REALLY deceiving, they make you look yellow. plus, foundation that's directly out of the tube doesn't reflect the light the same way as the skin does, but this is something no one seems to care (i don't even know if it's taught anywhere-but it's so obvious!), so they will always give you darker shades-maybe not intentionally... but these mistakes cost lots of money!

mata said...

I couldnt agree more! nw15 is close but still dark n yellowish for me too. nc15 is way too dark! very disappointing...

Anonymous said...

Hey there,
I know it is pretty hard to find the perfect match when you have very fair skin, because I'm very pale, too.
So, I might have found the solution^^ At the moment I use "Missha M Signature BB Cream #13 Bright Milky Beige" and it's as close as it gets to perfect ;) Maybe you can give it a try. :)

greetings Tanja

Loevens said...

Strange... I clicked a picture of the LA girl color balm on google and ended up on this post... Very strange since the picture I clicked belonged to my own blog. glitch?