Now, I have to state the obvious. Of course there are many interpretations of make up. Beauty really is in the eye of the beholder when it comes to this art form. I know I have to tread lightly here. But please remember, you are on my blog reading a post called, “How To Not Suck At Foundation”; I wrote this piece, but I did not lead you here.

Thin layers: The universal law of make up

This rule is something that transcends cultures and trends. Make up always looks its best when applied in thin light layers and build up. This rule should be considered in every step of make up.

When it comes to face products like foundations and concealers, thick heavy layers will have a hard time blending into the skin and with out a doubt will end up in every crease and fold in your face. If you have oily skin, applying heavy amounts of make up in one go will most likely cause a mud slide later in the day as well. A heavy hand with a powder brush will leave your skin lifeless and crusty.

Get in the habit of dispensing half of the amount you normally would and remember, you can always add more if you need it.

You are giving your foundation jobs it wasn’t meant to do

The only role foundation has, is to blend skin color to give you an even toned finish. It is not however, meant for concealing major discoloration, adding a tan to your skin, lightening your skin tone, or matching your neck and face color together. Let me put it simply for you:

If you need concealer, use concealer. Adding heavy layers of foundation over small areas will look crusty and cakey because, unlike concealer, foundation wasn’t formulated to be concentrated in one area.

I know it can be hard to color match foundations for some people. Understand this though; if the foundation color does not blend into your skin well, it is not the correct color, therefore it is not the correct foundation.

If your face and neck do not match, use bronzer to correct it, not foundation. No one wants that dreaded foundation line around the jaw, so I can see the reasoning behind bringing foundation all the way down the neck. It will end up looking streaky and noticeable though. Not to mention it will most likely end up on clothing and seat belts shortly after. Bronzer will warm up your complexion, add depth and tone and if applied correctly will make your skin look more natural. Blend bronzer around the hairline, cheekbones, jaw and lightly apply vertically through the jugular areas to give your complexion a seamless, warm, healthy look.

I could write a whole article about concealer

If concealer is lighter than your skin, it will make that area look ashy which will make that area more noticeable. If its too light under your eyes, you will look sickly. If anything, go with the warmer darker shade under your eyes to correct discoloration. If you feel you need “brightness” under your eyes, correct discoloration first and then add a layer of brightness via liquid pen highlighters or brightening powders over the top.

You are not relying enough on your skin care

Beautiful make up applies best on beautiful skin. That’s not to say that if you have less than stellar skin, you can’t achieve a beautiful face. What I mean by this is, if you want to achieve a flawless, smooth complexion, it always starts with good hygiene habits and a well formulated routine. If you don’t know where to begin, feel free to check out my skin care article to get an idea on how to start good skin care habits (BY CLICKING HERE).

Lose that consumer mindset

I wouldn’t be writing this blog if I didn’t have a passion for cosmetics and beauty. I don’t want to suck the fun out of cosmetic shopping from anyone. But just remember, you don’t need fourteen lipsticks from fourteen different brands that are essentially the same shade. You don’t need the drugstore version of the expensive foundation you already own. You definitely don’t need make up pallets, like at all.

There is no reason for the average make up user to own, lets say, a contouring kit that contains six different shades of highlighters and bronzers. There isn’t a skin tone out there that can pull off every color you throw at it. The same thing can be said about this whole eyeshadow pallet trend. Over stuffed eyeshadow pallets are just that, a trend. This fad speaks to the inner consumer in all of us. Technically, you do save a tremendous amount of money buying pallets. But what is the point if you are most likely going to wear maybe thirty percent of it to begin with? What’s worse is the people wearing shades and tones that don’t belong anywhere near their face.

Save the pallets for the pros and instead, invest in personal eyeshadow quads and individual highlighters and bronzers. These colors will be tailored to your own skin tone, you will be able to use up the product in a timely manner (which means more make up shopping, am I right?) and you’ll have more room in your budget and vanity for new fun products you can try out.