Finding your perfect foundation shade/colour matching essentially means finding your perfect foundation shade. You want a shade that seamlessly blends into your neck and evens out anyone skin tone differences (for example, if you fake tan your body and neck/chest, but not your face) and it can be hard, really hard! It's no easy feat and it's something that I know a lot of people, myself included, really struggle with. Everyone has their own tips and tricks to finding their perfect match so today I've compiled a list of tips and tricks of my own (as well as the advice of a few beauty blogging/make up artist friends) to help make the process a little easier for you!
I think the first thing to remember is that not everyone colour matches themselves to foundations the same way and that doesn't make one way right and the other wrong, they're just different. In saying that though, I wouldn't recommend matching your foundation to your foot, for example. If you want to do that though and it works, who am I to judge? (NOTE: I'd probably be judging you)
With all that in mind, let's get into it!
Firstly, I'd recommend that you take a good look at your face. What skin tone are you? How does the colour of your face differ from the colour of the rest of your body and what do you think will blend the two together nicely? Knowing the answer to these questions should, hopefully, steer you in the right
If you intend on picking up a new foundation but know which product or brand you want, I highly recommend you do your research before heading in-store. Does the range tend to run more warm, cool or neutral toned? Will that suit your skin tone and undertone? What's their numbering or naming system? Does the formula oxidise and, if so, do you need to get a shade or two lighter than you thought? Knowing the answers to these questions in advance should save you time and make the colour matching process less pressure packed!
Walking into somewhere like David Jones, Myer or Mecca can make the process a lot easier as there's generally someone available to assist you. I also find going into a store with a rough idea of what shade I think I'll be really helps. I feel like it shows that you're serious about picking the product up and want a perfect match, not a 'close enough' shade. Don't let them match it over your existing foundation. What you're wearing could be all wrong, hence the foundation shopping, and then you'll end up with another foundation that doesn't suit. It's important to remember that sales assistants are trying to sell you their product so trust your gut. Don't buy anything on a whim; think about it. If they've applied it for you, wear it for a bit. Do you like the way it sits? Has it oxidised? Do you think you could go a shade darker/lighter? Ask yourself these questions before it's too late, especially if you're investing in a higher end foundation! Finally, don't be afraid to ask for a sample. Higher end brands are generally quite generous with their samples and it's such a great way of testing a foundation for colour match in your own home.
If you're trying to colour match yourself, shit is going to get real. My favourite place to colour match myself is on my jawline just below my ear. Other people say to match it to the chest and some even find that the inside of the wrist or their arm is the best spot, but they just don't work for me. Pat a bit little foundation onto the area, blend it in with the fingers and see what happens. How does it look? Is it too yellow? If so, go for something a little cooler, perhaps. If it's too pink, you might want something a little warmer. Likewise, you may need to steer clear from tones all together and opt for something more neutral. Until you're comfortable colour matching, it's a bit of trial and error.
Finally, I just have a few tips
- If you have a foundation that is a perfect match for you but you're looking for a new formula, why not take it with you? Sure, you won't find the exact same shade in a different product but it should be a good starting point!
- If you have a lot of redness in your face but not the rest of your body, don't match your foundation to the redness, even if it will seamlessly blend into that part of your face. It won't match the rest of your body and you'll be left with a big pink mask.
- Whether you're being colour matched or doing it yourself, it is so important to remember that stores have artificial lighting that washes everything out and distorts colours. Take a compact with you and, if possible, check out the match in natural lighting. You'll get a much better idea of how things match and what suits your skin tone!