CHOOSING THE RIGHT PRODUCTS:
As a rule of thumb, lighter products are best for day or casual wear, while heavy products are best reserved for dressier occasions. This is mainly because, while the heavier products have better coverage, they also are worse for your skin. They can get into and clog your pores, prevent your skin from breathing and cause blackheads and pimples.
Once in a while when you want that flawless, heavy-duty coverage, you may want to use them, but you should steer clear from them on a daily basis.
When choosing any type of foundation or powder, always make certain that it matches your natural skin tones. Don’t use make-up to attempt to make your skin look lighter, or darker it will only serve to look unnatural. When buying foundations and powders, it is best to go to a store where you can try on samples. Go with your face clean and ready for application.
If you are already wearing make-up, it will not give you a good idea of what the product will look like on your clear skin. Always test base make-ups on your face, preferably the jawline. Testing on your arm or hand will give you a false reading and usually result in the wrong color.
Heavier, cream foundations (which are usually oil-based) and pressed or pancake powder can give a near flawless-looking appearance on film or at night in the atmospheric lights of restaurants, theaters, and clubs. However, in broad daylight, these products appear unnatural, and they only last a few hours before beginning to run, streak, or cake. They also are so heavy they can make you feel like you are wearing a mask.
Liquid, sheer, water-based foundation, and loose, foundation mousse, and translucent powder qualify as lighter make-up. These give your own natural look a lift without being too dominating, and without making your face feel like it has been frosted. They are the best choice for daily use.
For heavier coverage of problem areas on a daily basis, use a cream concealer. The type of concealer you will need will depend upon the skin problem you have. For ruddiness and blemishes that are pink or red, choose a green-based concealer. Green is on the opposite end of the color wheel than red, and opposites neutralize the effect of the other.
For dark, bluish circles under the eyes or bruises, use a peach (for light skin) or mauve (darker skin) color-based concealer. If you have problems with scars or a birthmark, you will want to find a concealer that is completely opaque.
PREPARE YOUR FACE: Before applying any base coverage, you should wash your face with a gentle cleanser, rinse well with water, and pat dry. Then, apply a water-based, light moisturizer. Preparing your skin this way will ensure the evenest coverage possible, and reduce the possibility of caking as the day goes on.
APPLICATORS: For liquid, mousses, creams, and pancake make-up, applicator sponges are the best option. They help blend the product better than your fingers. For a lighter application of water-based liquid, or for heavy pancake coverage, the sponge should be damp. Wet it then ring it out well before applying. For mouses and creams, or liquids when you desire a slightly heavier coverage, leave the sponge dry.
For translucent powders, or pressed powders when going for a light, casual look, use a large, clean blush brush to apply. Don’t use a brush that has recently been used for blush, as it will tint your powder unevenly. Use a new brush or one that was recently washed and thoroughly dried.
Concealer can be applied with a sponge applicator for wider areas (such as your cheeks, forehead, chin), or with your fingers for places that are creased or harder to get to (the corner of the eyes, the crease around the nostril).
TECHNIQUE: Begin by applying a dab of foundation in the center of the forehead. Use short, brisk strokes to draw it outward in all directions, as if creating a sunburst effect. Bring it out toward the hairline, blending well as you go along. Curve downwards around the temple, towards the cheeks. Drawdown along the bridge of the nose.
Place another dab in the center of the nose, and draw that out in a similar sunburst fashion. Go up to blend with the line you left at the bridge of the nose, out under the eyes and over the cheeks, swooping up to blend at the temples. Bring it down toward the tip of the nose, over the nostrils and upper lip.
Next, put a dab at the chin with a dab at the chin, drawing it up to the lips, up the jaw line, blending upwards into the cheeks and down into the neckline. Then, go lightly and gently over your closed eyelids, blending in around the socket.
Make sure that all areas are blended well, and that the edge of the make-up line blends undetectably into your skin. The lighter the make-up, the easier it will be to blend it in. Heavier make up, such as pancake, may require extra dabs of make-up as you go along. It will take more effort to blend well and get even coverage.
Pancake powder will give strong, opaque coverage and will not require concealer. If you have problem areas and are using a water-based or mousse foundation, you may wish to apply concealer to the area after you have blended the foundation.
Choose the appropriate color concealer for the job, smooth it over the area with a sponge or fingertips, and blend around the edge of the concealer with your fingers, pulling it further and further out as you blend. Do not rub or blend the concealer directly over the blemish or discoloration, as you will only serve to wipe most of it off and decrease coverage.
Take the translucent or pressed powder and your large blush brush. Load the brush with powder, then tap onto a tissue to remove excess. Close your eyes and gently brush the powder across your entire face. Do not press the brush into your skin, or scrub it back and forth. Simply allow the soft hairs to sweep across the flesh.
For a heavier coverage with pressed powder, use the powder puff that usually comes in the compact. Rub the powder into the puff, then dab and use brisk, short strokes to cover your face. Adhere to the contours of your face as you work it in.
This will give a more opaque coating, however will feel heavier and has a tendency to cake, or streak with perspiration. This technique is fine for use in indoor, cool places, but if you are going to be outdoors in natural daylight, heavy pressed powder application can take on a slightly orange tone.
Now your canvass is ready for you to apply your colors.