How to Pick Out Your Ideal Foundation and Concealer Shade

If you choose to wear makeup, you obviously want to express yourself more creatively and look your best. That said, it’s paramount that you choose the right foundation and concealer shade for your skin tone.

It may not be fair, but even if the formula of a certain foundation/concealer seems perfect for your skin type, if there’s not a shade match for you, you should keep searching.

In the end, a wrong foundation/concealer shade is very obvious and can be rather unflattering. Even if your eye makeup is amazing, no one will be able to appreciate it if your face looks completely off shade-wise compared to the rest of your body.

But, nailing your ideal foundation/concealer shade can be tricky. Hopefully, the following tips will help.

1. Three undertones

To find your perfect foundation shade, you need to determine your undertone first. In the end, you can get away with your foundation being just a bit lighter or darker, but if the undertone is off, the shade will most definitely look ridiculous on you. There are three main undertones: cool, warm, and neutral.

Three undertones

2. What’s yours?

There are many ways you can determine what undertone you have. Checking your veins is the most popular one. All you have to do is see whether the blue of the veins on your arm is more purplish or greenish. The first case equals a cool undertone while the second is a warm undertone.

If you can’t decide what color is dominant, you probably have a neutral undertone. The grayish, olive undertone that some people may have is also a part of the neutral undertone group when it comes to most foundation brands.

Another interesting but effective way to determine whether you’re leaning towards a cool or warm undertone is to check your jewelry preferences. Silver means cool while gold means warm undertone.

Concealer Shade

3. Match the foundation to your skin tone

Once you know what undertone to focus your attention on, you should find the best overall shade match for your skin tone. In general, your face tends to be a bit darker compared to your neck, which is why it would be best to try and match your foundation shade to your neck skin tone.

When you do the checking, make sure that you’re in the natural light. Artificial store lighting is really bad for shade choosing, so keep that in mind.

To make things easier for you, address a proper foundation guide so that you know what you’re looking for when store staff offers their assistance and to narrow down your search. If you can’t decide between two or three shades, apply all of them next to one another on your jawbone. The one that seems to disappear into your skin is the winner.

skin foundation

4. Pick out a concealer

If you want a concealer to cover your face imperfections, the process of finding the perfect one is pretty much the same as with the foundation shade. However, if you can’t find the exact match, neutral beige with faint yellow shades is the best way to go.

For undereye concealer, however, you should always go with one or two shades lighter than your actual skin tone. You want to brighten and highlight this area and a lighter concealer is a good way to do that.

Closeup of woman using blush on

5. Avoid oxidation

Some foundations and concealers have a formula that oxidizes. This means that they turn a shade (and sometimes even several shades) darker when applied and dried. This is why you need to wait for the foundation or the concealer to dry down before you make your final decision.

Avoid oxidation

Remember that the majority of people get a little bit of tan in the summer. That said, you may need to find two ideal foundation and concealer shades; for both colder and warmer months. In the end, just like you want to find the perfect shade match, try your best to find the perfect skin type match.

There are plenty of foundation and concealer finishes and formulas nowadays to suit everyone’s needs. And, keep in mind that your base makeup will look its very best only if you take the time to do your skincare routine consistently.

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