It’s common for people to look for a base colour to cover up or change their natural skin tone, rather than to enhance it. If you have blemishes to hide, then you’re looking for concealer (it’s on the shelf below).

 

A good place to start is deciding on your skin tone – is it light, fair, medium or dark? Next, you have to determine your skin’s undertone.

 

The surface colour of your skin can change when you get sunburned or if you have a skin condition, but your skin’s undertone will never change. Knowing whether your undertone is warm, cool or neutral is essential for choosing the correct base colour for your skin.

 

This is the general rule: If you tan easily you will have a warm undertone of yellow and gold. If you burn easily and don’t tan very much you will have a cool undertone of pink and red. If you have an olive skin tone you will have a neutral undertone without a distinguishable colour. Look for a foundation to match your skin tone and undertone.

 

Once you know your skin tone you can choose a few base colours to try. You don’t want to look like you’re wearing a mask so your foundation needs to blend into your neck. Test out a colour by applying some to your jawline on the side of your face.

 

If the foundation is invisible then you’ve found a match. Ideally you need to check this in natural light because harsh store lighting can give you a false impression.

 

If you’re stuck deciding between two different shades and your budget allows it then buy both. Our skin changes in summer and winter and you could use a darker shade in summer and a lighter shade in winter. During the months in between, you can mix the two shades together.

 

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