Down to the basics
There’s a good reason why the foundation got its name — it can make or break your look. The key, SOHINI DEY discovers, lies in choosing the right products.
T he first time I used foundation was for a dance performance. A single shade was slapped on to everyone’s face, irrespective of complexion or skin type, and it was an absolute disaster. In a few hours, my face had turned a shade of chalky white; but what was worse was the breakout that followed. Predictably, I stayed away from foundations for a long time.
In the recent years, however, the foundation has become indispensable in my beauty kit. With numerous brands and varieties now available in India, choosing the appropriate foundation for a specific skin type has become much simpler. But to make the right choice, it’s crucial to keep a few things in mind.
Make-up Artist Cherag Bambboat says, “The best way to choose a foundation is to apply the shade on the jaw line.” The better the product blends in, the more accurate the shade. “One must pay attention to darker areas — around the mouth, under the eyes, corners of the forehead, and the sides of the face. These areas can’t take the same shade of foundation if there is a great difference in colour,” Bambboat adds.
Tom Pecheux, Estee Lauder’s Creative Make-up Director, suggests separate foundations for summer and winter. The summer foundation should be one shade lighter than your skin tone while the one meant for winters should be a shade darker.
Do you wear your work suit to a party? We doubt it. So why wear the same foundation? Your choice of product should vary according to the occasion. During the day, keep your foundation light to avoid looking caked up. If you have normal skin, a foundation with sheer coverage is sufficient. For a special day-time occasion — a brunch or a day date — use a medium-coverage foundation to conceal small flaws and smoothen your complexion. An evening occasion merits a heavy-coverage foundation that will cover fine lines and blemishes and add luminescence to your face. When it comes to application, Pecheux suggests using your fingertips for light coverage, a brush to hide medium flaws and a sponge for heavy coverage.
It is often assumed that new-age skincare products — BB creams, CC creams and tinted moisturisers — are substitutes for the foundation. Not quite. While these products sometimes provide more skincare benefits than the foundation, they can hardly match up in terms of coverage. In addition, none of these products are available in shades as varied as the foundation. Essentially, there is place in your beauty kit for one or more of these products, but without letting go of the traditional foundation.