Apply Foundation Like A Pro

We now begin to deal with make up products, what is available in the market, and how to choose them to suit your skin, colour and age. The use of foundation has been prevalent in many cultures over the ages, maybe not in the form that we see them today, but in several other guises. From the ancient women of Egypt to the tribes in Africa and to our own ancestors here in India, women have always found ways to conceal and enhance the surface of the skin to protect it from the damage of the sun and make them look more beautiful and youthful.


Foundations come in three different textures – liquid, cream and oil sticks. The texture depends on the quantity of water to oil in the product. In liquid foundations, the percentage of water is very high and oil content is extremely low or not present at all. The same applies to the oil stick, with the oil content being very high and water content almost negligible. This variety is available to take into account the different types of usage and also the different types of skins.

Foundation is not intended to be absorbed into the skin, but should be able to spread quickly and evenly over its surface lying and setting in its place perfectly until removed at a later stage.

Finding the foundation that suits your skin type and colour best is a daunting task for most women. As far as skin type is concerned, normal and combination skins require cream based products. Women with oily skin will do well to stay away from products that have high oil based formulations so they can go for liquid water based foundations. Dry skins on the other hand are best suited to oil sticks.


Choosing the right colour

This isn’t an easy task. The first mistake that most of us make while buying products, is to test them out on hands. There is always a great shade and tone difference between the hand and the face. One must always try out shades on the face before buying the product. Check it in the daylight.

Any beauty counter worth its product reputation will allow you to do this. The next problem faced is that, very often, your exact skin shade is not available. Here, with the help of the assistant, you can find a mixture of two shades that will give you your exact colour. You will have to buy two bottles, but in the long run it is better to have a colour that matches and that you can use, rather than one bottle that lies on your dresser forever because it isn’t the right shade.



Prepare your skin for the application of foundation well. Cleanse, tone and if required moisturize. If you want just a little coverage, use your fingers. If using a sponge applicator, always see that it is clean and fresh. A used sponge is a wonderful heaven for bacteria to grow in and you only transfer those onto your skin. See that the applicator is damp as that helps smooth the foundation over the skin evenly.

For everyday, apply foundation only where you need it to hide pimples, camouflage redness or even out your T-zone. Blend well over the neck, ears and into the hairline to avoid that ugly ring around the face effect. Use a small, pointy brush to cover the darkest part of under-eye circles—usually right below the inner and outer corners. If other little skin flaws aren’t quite covered by your foundation, dab on a tiny bit of concealer there too. New translucent powders that reflect the light help skin glow and take down shine.

The thumb rule ‘Less Is Better’ applies here! So get cracking with that foundation and see what a difference it really makes!!




Noted makeup artist and stylist Leila Sharma has nearly 25 years of rich experience to boast of. She began her training in the beauty and fashion world in 1991, when she attended the Roberta Mechan School of Beauty in the UK. She joined the fashion world shortly after she moved to Bengaluru in Karnataka. She also trained under the internationally acclaimed makeup specialist Linda Meridith in London. Leila holds a diploma in screen, stage, film and fashion makeup and has been working with the best talent of the country, including Bollywood and sports personalities, leading designers and photographers of India. Leila has several International and national advertisement campaigns and shows to her credit. She styles for both the print media and TV commercials and works extensively with a number of ad film houses. Her range of work extends into fantasy make up and body painting. She is the recipient of the kingfisher award for excellence in makeup in 2000. She pens a fortnightly column ‘Face Value’.

Readers can write to her at

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