Basic Base: Foundation Tips

I get a few questions over and over. The most popular question is how to get a flawless face. There is something about great skin that sets a great canvas for anything else you artfully place on top.

The answer to this simple question can be summed up with a few simple factors:

Clear Canvas, Beautiful Art

When I get asked about foundation, invariably I roll back to skin care. I never talk to clients about makeup without talking, first, about the canvas – a beautiful slate of skin.

How you treat your skin will make a huge impact on the overall outcome of your look. So let’s be real; like anything else you have to know and love the skin you are in. Get to know your skin and find out how it likes to be treated.

Oily, Dry of Combo Skin – Your skin care routine will be contingent upon what skin type you have. Regardless, find a cleanser, toner, and moisturizer that works for you. Then, be consistent in the way you care for your face.

I love the following products and have found them essential to my beauty routine:

  • Coconut Oil – MUST BE COLD PRESSED AND ORGANIC. This is , without a doubt, the absolute best cleansing oil I have ever used! I love this one!
  • Micellar Water – The French got it right with Bioderma! I love this micellar water and have not found a comparable one in the drug store. It is perfect for every day washing or for cleaning up makeup mistakes.
  • Moisturize! Please. I love this one, also French. While there are several great moisturizers, this one works for everyone. Also, a kit essential for me.
  • Makeup Primer – While not essential, this product does amazing things toward having great looking base and long-wearing makeup. Try this delicious smelling citrus version and you will be spoiled forever!
  • Hydrating Facial Mist – Roses are just a part of ME spoiling ME! This relaxing and moisturizing mist will make you feel like you took yourself out for a date too. If you love roses as much as I do, go get yourself a bottle to mist your face with after cleansing!

Although this is the most boring part of the foundation routine, and seems like it lacks artistic luster, it is key so do not skimp – a bit.

Luminous skin

Luminous skin has always been a sign of healthy youthful skin. Enjoy it while you are young? Has your skin started dulling? There are lots of serums to bring back the healthy glow, but until you are sheening again, find products that give you a little glow. I really love Loreal Magic Lumi Primer or mix a few drops of Temptu highlighter into your foundation for a subtle boost.  For more on luminous skin, check this blog post by Amrezy.

Get Primed

Priming skin is serves several purposes:

  • Fills pores and turns your skin into  silky smooth surface one which to place your foundation.
  • Serves as a barrier between your precious skin and your foundation.
  • Creates a lasting environment to prolong to wear of your foundation.

You are sure to love the following primers:

  1. Laura Geller, Spackle (for priming and pore filling)
  2. NYX, Angel Veil (for priming and pore filling, very economical)
  3. NYX, Pore Filler (for more attention to pores)
  4. Benefit, Porefessional (higher end help for pores)
  5. Smashbox, Photofinish Primer (oil free)


Color is key. Lots of theories here, but I am a purist; go get color checked at a Sephorah store or color matched at a MAC counter. Feel free to find foundation color dupes! Good foundation does not have to break the bank, try one of these quality drugstore bases.

Yes, I love L’Oreal. Is it that obvious? HAHA!!

Contour and dimension


For once, do not take things at face value. Still feel pale? Faux your fawn; warm up your face with a little bronzer (these are some of my faves) over the bridge of your nose and around your hairline. Feel a little sullen? Brighten things up with brightening pen or highlight the high points of your face using a highlighter (here is a delicious one) a few shades brighter than your foundation.

Contour, but don’t get crazy. Likelihood is, you are not working under studio light or getting snapped up by the paparazzi. So, you will need a more natural contour. Try this palette for the most blendable and flexible set of products.  This will build depth back in after foundation while not adding a cakey texture.

Word to the wise

Go easy on the powder. Easy.

Nothing ruins good face faster than some powder keg. If your foundation is well suited to your skin, all you will need is a light dusting. Past your contour and highlight, you should not need many more powder products. If you have no allergies, try a lighter and silkier setting powder with a non-colored composition to finish your flawless face. To knock the powdery finish off of your makeup, mist with a primer water or moisture mist!

As always, be playful, experiment, find what works for you and have fun. It is makeup, not a masters degree.

Love and Light,

That Basic Chic