There are many things to consider when finding a foundation. In this blog we are going to focus on finding the right shade, including the right level of lightness/darkness and the right undertone.
What is the difference between the level of a foundation and the undertone of a foundation?
Level refers to how light/dark the foundation is. Many companies use numbers to indicate the level of lightness/darkness of a foundation. So for example, Here is an example of Face Atelier Foundation swatches.
Undertone refers to the underlying 'tone' or of the foundation level. These undertones can be found in ANY level of foundation.
There are 3 main undertones that cosmetics company tend to market:
Cool - This means the foundation has some pink/red hues that are visible.
Warm - This means that the foundation has some yellow/gold tones that are visible (many companies also include 'olive' tones into warm).
Neutral - This means that that shade works for people who have a little bit of both warm and cool - so the undertone has a mix of both. Some companies will market these as having a peachy undertone.
Here is an example of women who have on the right level of foundation, but the wrong undertone:
Where does Surface tone come into the picture?
Surface tones refer to colors that you may see on your face that are ONLY on the surface of the skin.
For example. Women who have rosacea may look at the pink on their face and think that they have a cool undertone.
However, if you look at the lovely lady on the right, she clearly has a pale yellow undertone (warm), but pink surface tones (cool).
By using the undertone that matches her neck and the perimeter of her face that is not as affected by the rosacea, she found her perfect foundation color for her skin. Which helped her to create a natural, flawless looking makeup application.
Click here to see a quick snippet of me teaching the students of #lancasterschoolofcosmetology a bit about this concept.
If all else fails and you feel completely lost, contact me to set up a fun and informative makeup lesson.
I am a licensed educator with over 15 years of industry experience as a Pro artist, and have been providing makeup education for over 10 years.
I would LOVE the opportunity to help you further you passion for makeup <3.