Monday, September 27, 2010

My foundation routine


Hello my beauties,
...On some days especially when I am late, I try to do the 5 minute face but it never works out because I always feel like there is something else I need to add to make my foundation flawless. Now some of you may think this is alot to put on but once you have it down pat, its a breeze to apply, with eyes and lips it can take me about 15 minutes to do my entire makeup routine on work days and about 25 minutes when I am going out.

Now these steps cater to the mood I am in, the weather (whether its raining or whether its hot like satan's pot) and whether I am trying to conceal a blemish or some past scar from a pimple.

However step one always remains the same.
Step 1: Prime your face

Primer is an essential if you want your makeup to last long especially in hot or humid climates. I use an oil free primer- usually silicone based which gives foundation a base to adhere to you skin. Have you ever felt like your makeup was melting off. Yep! I've been there. Primer helps to avoid this mishap and can help your foundation to stay on longer during your 8 hr work day. Sometimes I find my primer still leaves me with
a bit of shine. (oily skin sucks now but when your in your 40's, it actually helps to prevent wrinkles). When that happens I use my Arista Vanishing Cream for oily skin. I apply it with my foundation brush and it mattifies the oil keeping your face shine free and ready for your foundation.
Primer of choice: I used Mac's Prep + Prime Primer but it had some little sparkles which I didn't like on my face. I have recently been using GOSH Velvet Touch Foundation Primer ($25 US). It helps your foundation to go on smooth and stay on. If I am going to be out all day in the sun and extra step I take is to apply MAC's Prep + Prime Face Protect Protection SPF 50 ($26 US). Be careful with such a high SPF though. It may give your face a white or gray overcast especially if you are planning to take pictures. A little goes a long way!

Other great primers :

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer - retails for about $40 US (one of the best)
Murad (the acne products line) Oil Control Mattifier- on sale for about $26-30 US. I saw this product in marie-claire. It got great reviews. I think I'm going to try it.

Step 2 : Apply Liquid Foundation with a brush
I did a post on choosing the right foundation. You can check that out. I have tried Revlon Photo-ready Liquid Foundation with SPF 20 in Cappuccino. It promised to look flawless in pictures and bend the light in such a way it hides your imperfections. Well that didn't happen for me. First of all, they didn't have my shade. The one I have is a bit too dark so I had to mix it with another foundation. I use it once in a while. One plus is that its a little bit thicker than MAC's liquid foundation so I use less of it on my face. I am however sticking to my good ole friend MAC's Studio Fix Fluid in NW43 with SPF 15. She hasn't failed me yet. On a side note, I went to explore MAC's new line of liquid foundations- Long wear Pro with SPF 30 i think which promised to last up to 15 hrs. The shade selection however was disappointed. I didn't even find one close enough. The line offers many NC shades and a handful of NWs so for my NW girls, hold strong, maybe some one else besides me will complain and they decide to make more NW shades. Oh and I always apply liquid foundation with a foundation brush. Sponges soak up too much product and are very hard t
o keep bacteria free. I clean my brushes every day with a spray brush cleaner from Quo and one from ELF.

Step 3: Concealer
This step is not always necessary, I get pretty good coverage from my foundation but sometimes you might need to conceal a pimple or a scar or you had a long night and some dark circles are looming. I have tried many other concealers including those brands made for women of colour but I have always come back to MACs Studio Finish Concealer in NW 40 with SPF 35. I like the texture and the shade is perfect. I apply my concealer with my fingers because my body heat helps to warm it up and makes it easier to apply. Just tap it on and blend with your fingers. Be gentle when applying under your eyes, the skin there is very sensitive. Now some of you may realize I do the concealer after foundation method, I find it easier and more pratical but its up to you, doesn't really matter when you apply it. I have seen pics of celebs with concealer under their eyes that was too pale or too grey, please avoid that by picking a concealer no more than two shades lighter than your skin colour. I can also recommend high end brands such as Bobbi Brown, Lorac and Laura Mercier when choosing concealers. They get good reviews but their lines are some what pricey.

Step 4: Set your face with Oil blotting powder or Powder foundation.
This step is necessary when applying liquid foundation, however if you use powder foundation you can just apply the primer, concealer and then the powder to set your face. I set my face however with either an oil blotting powder, I use MACs Oil Blotting Powder in Medium Dark but right now I am trying out Black Opal Invisible Oil Blocking Powder. On days when I am really shiny I also use my Mac Studio Fix Powder foundation in NW 43 to give me extra coverage. Don't worry I use it on my t-zone only. (nose bridge, forehead and chin, my cheeks also ) This I apply with my powder brush. Again I don't use sponges because they hold bacteria and waste alot of product. Even though I use the oil blotting powder , I still have to use my oil blotting sheets throughout the day to remove excess oil from my face. I don' t however reapply my foundation. This would only make your face look cakey due to the sweat and makeup you have already applied.

Oil blotting powders are every where right now, you should find a really good one very easily. I still sometimes use my NYC transparent powder that I bought for $4 us in a drug store from time to time. Most blotting powders are transparent so you don't have to find your shade but try not to apply too much because they do contain talc powder which can give you that ghost like effect.
Step 5: Check out how flawless you look in the mirror and finish up your eyes and lips.
Now this seems like a long process and alot of products but I am not advocating this for every one this is what works for me and mostly its because I have oily skin that I take extra steps. Alot of you can probably skip the concealer and liquid foundation and oil blotting powder and still look flawless, if you have really good skin. I however fake it(lol). After this I usually add my blush and sometimes I contour my cheeks and my nose.

Writing this post has made me realize one thing however, I need to start saving up for that TEMPTU Airbrush makeup system. (Wonder if its still $299 US) lol.

I am planning on doing a Q&A post every week for those of you who have beauty related questions that you need answering. I am an open book and a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the latest trends in beauty products and tips.

Remember beauty is necessary inside and out.

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