Monday, December 20, 2010

Makeup Tips for Trans Women Part 3 - Foundation

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Introduction

Foundation can make or break how your face appears. Applied correctly and the result can be beautiful flawless skin, applied wrong and... Well let's just say it will look bad. This article will attempt to help you first find the foundation type and shade that is right for you and then explain how to apply it.

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Where To Start

The key to finding the perfect shade foundation is not exactly as simple as it may seem. While it is not extremely difficult it can be a bit tricky.

The first thing to do is choose a brand or line that fits your needs. Before even thinking about colors consider what type of foundation suits your needs.
  • Liquid Foundation: Very popular and easy to apply. Great for dry or combination skin and those looking for something that offers medium coverage.
  • Cream Foundation: Found in compact or stick form this foundation is also easy to apply and great for dry skin. This type of foundation is usually a bit more on the medium to heavy coverage side.
  • Powder Foundation: This type of foundation is good for people with oily or combination skin. Coverage can range from sheer to heavy. Also available in a cream to powder form.

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Choosing the Right Shade Foundation

Here are the steps for finding the perfect foundation for your skin color.
  1. Choose a shade that looks closest to the skin color. After that grab the next darkest and the next lightest shades available.
  2. Take a bit of each and test them side by side on your jaw bone. One important fact: Do not test on your hand. Contrary to popular belief the skin on your hand is not necessarily the same as the skin on your face.
  3. Lastly choose the shade that blends in the most with you skin tone.
This last part sounds over simplified but you will be able to tell that one of the shades almost disappears, the key is to compare different shades on your face side by side. It is amazing how two shade can look almost the same in the bottle but nothing alike on your skin. If none of your selected shades work or one is almost right but not quite wash all the makeup off before trying again.

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More Important Tips

  • Unless you are very fair skinned, try warmer (yellowish) foundations first.
  • If you can, take a look at how the different shades look under different lighting. I remember buying a foundation that looked great in the florescent lighting of the store only to find that it looked orange in the sunlight!
  • Understand that there is no end all be all foundation color. You skin color changes with the seasons so understand that a foundation that looked great when you bought it may be all sorts of wrong a few months later.
  • Keep in mind that some stores will allow you to return makeup even if you use it.
  • Expect that foundation will do the job it is intended for... If you want to hide blemishes, use concealer.
  • Ask for a second opinion.
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How To Apply Foundation

Now that you have the perfect shade of foundation, how the heck do you apply this stuff? Well here is some tips on that as well.
  1. Make sure your face is clean.
  2. If using under eye concealer, apply the concealer first, then the foundation.
  3. Put a bit of foundation onto the back of your hand. Then using you fingers, a brush... or a sponge (if you insist) dot foundation onto your cheeks, forehead, chin and noes.
  4. BLEND!!!!
  5. Then blend some more, making sure you work your way outward.
  6. Lastly, one of the most overlooked steps, set your foundation with a bit of translucent powder.
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Pitfalls

  • Remember that you are not using your foundation to try to cover you 5 o'clock shadow, at the most your are using it to help camouflage it... More details here.
  • Blend but don't wipe off your makeup.
  • Heavy foundation application does not hide wrinkles and lines, it can in fact make them more noticeable.
  • Avoid the makeup mask when you get to the edges of your face (jawline and hairline).
Once your foundation is applied be sure to check that it is even and that the color is right, remember our skin changes... Don't assume that you have the right color. Then that's it... You're now ready to move on to the rest of your makeup.

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