Monday, 3 October 2011

Insight My Kit: Foundations And Bases

A much-debated subject in the world of blogging and Twitter is the topic of best foundation. As a professional makeup artist, I have concluded that there is no "perfect" foundation that does everything! However there's close-to-perfect foundations that does certain things really well. 

You know what? I don't want to just have one type/brand of foundation. I like variety and the ability to be able to custom-blend a foundation that suits my model/client. Things I look out for in terms of choosing which foundation to use are coverage, finish, skin type/condition, environment, climate and colour.

Let me share with you the foundations I currently carry in my kit when I work. I always have at least 3 brands just in case any of my models/client has any sensitivity to any brands. And I always carry different finishes as well. You just never know!

Sheer Finish
These have the sheerest form of coverage, perfect for when all you want is a bit of colour. I would use these on good skin that need little or no coverage. I'd call them complexion enhancers rather than foundations. They're also perfect for layering and mixing. I would use these instead of moisturiser than layer a slightly heavier foundation to even out any redness before concealing.
L-R: Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint, Shu Uemura Stage Performer Instant Glow, Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector, Liz Earle Sheer Skin Tint.

Dewy Finish
These have a stronger coverage with a dewy or moist finish. Perfect for drier skins that require moisture and also great for when I want skin to appear plump and dewy. I would say these are my go to foundations on a day-to-day work basis. They're great for most skin types and layer well if you need more coverage. Apply with hands like a moisturiser if you want sheer or use a brush for stronger coverage. 
L-R: Lancome Teint Miracle, Jouer Age-Repairing Perfector, Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua, MyFace MyMix Foundation.

Semi/Matte Finish
Not necessarily the strongest in coverage but the semi-matte or matte finish gives it a slightly heavier coverage. Without a doubt my favourites for when I am shooting outdoors in the heat or humidity on location shoots. The matte finish prevents skin from shining and greasiness. I like these for close up beauty work as they give skin that matte flawlessness that contrasts well with shimmery sparkly eyes or wet glossy lips. Also great for problem skin, the matte finish gives minimal reflection so spots and bumps are less obvious.
L-R: YSL Teint Resist, Guerlain Lingerie De Peau, Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, Kesalan Patharan Base Makeup.

Full Coverage
Don't let these put you off, although strongest in coverage, you can sheer it down by mixing with mixers, moisturiser etc. I tend to use these on black or very dark skin tones. Why? These have really strong pigments and are perfect for black/darker skins. Many foundation brands found on the high street I find lack the strength in pigments and when used on black skin, results in a greyness that I dislike a lot. With these, all I get is intense pure rich colour that makes dark skin tones glow! I also like using these to contour and shade for all skin shades.
L-R: MAC Studio Sculpt, MAC Studio Tech, Shu Uemura Nobara Cream Cover Stick, MAC Full Coverage Foundation.

So there you have it, my foundation kit as it currently stands. Some have been recent requisitions, some have been in there for a while, so who's to say I won't have another new favourite in a few months time? Has anyone tried any of these yet? Please share your views and comments.

30 comments:

  1. Fab interesting post as always, there are a few in there that I must try. One of my all time favourites is teint miracle, love to buff it on the skin for a fab healthy radiant glow - another shopping list for me Mr Soh x

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  2. @Wendy: Thanks lovely! Glad you foudn it useful and I apologise for the expense! Thanks for making time to comment. x

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  3. This is really interesting and informative, many thanks for sharing your proffessional opinions!
    Liz
    http://aspirationsofglam.blogspot.com/
    xxx

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  4. Great post, nice to see the mix between different brands, thanks! I used the Lingerie de Peau for a while but I didn't really like it, it turned a bit greasy on me throughout the day and oxidised too. The myface were quite a revelation, they are my go to when in a hurry. And I'm so curious about the new Shiseido, it must be good to be in your kit :-) xx

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  5. Excellent and really useful post Kenneth, thank you.
    I'm always in pursuit of the best coverage and most natural finish, and I find that mixing foundations with tinted moisturisers or moisturisers yields better results than one product on its own can.
    Have a great week :)
    Nina x

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  6. Great post- great to see products 'lumped together' so I can see alternatives I can use. Thanks so much (I normally plump for chanel mat lumiere but would be interested to try the other products you mention in the mat catagory) xx

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  7. @Ana Marta: Hi! That's the thing about foundations, the chemistry of the product with the skin as well. Sorry it didn't work well for you. I adore the shiseido ones, they're pretty amazing and I use them a lot. Thank you for commenting x

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  8. @inthesweetshop: Hey Nina, great minds think alike is all I can say. Layering is the best way I think. Thanks for the comment! x

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  9. @Computergirl: hi! yeah I thought it's best to do in terms of consistency and finish, more helpful that way. Glad you liked it. Thanks for the comment! x

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  10. We share many favourites! Thanks for a very informative and helpful post! For Matte, I use NARS Sheer Matte, which seems to work well for my dry skin using a primer.

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  11. @Jamilla Camel: Oh great Jamilla. I haven't used NARS for a long time. Maybe I will look into it. Thanks for the suggestion & comment! x

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  12. Great post. It's fascinating to see it broken down into the different finishes too. The only one that I have tried is Teint Miracle but there are quite a few that you have that are on my list of things to try at some point. It looks like I need to read your Jouer post too, I am intrigued!
    Jane x

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  13. @ModestyBrown: Thanks Jane, yes please have a look at the Joeur post, it's my new love atm! It's easier I find for me to group my foundations in terms of finishes, what look I want dictates what product I use. It seems to work for my simple mind. Thanks for the comment. x

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  14. Love this, and I love reading your writing! I use MyFace MyMix since I went to the launch years ago - Charlotte Tilbury did my make up with it. I think I've had it since 2008 (so it's prob crawling with bacteria - ew) but I thin it down with Nivea so a little goes a long way.

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  15. @Disneyrollergirl: Yes I remember when it first launched! I didn't think much about it and then had a try and have been hooked since! You've got it right by thinning it down though. Why am I not surprised that you know all the tricks? Thanks for the comment! x

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  16. Thanks for showing us the foundations you use, it's interesting to read from a makeup artists perspective.

    I've tried the Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua, and even though my skin is dry, it never seems to 'set' properly and rubs off within an hour. I like using it to add dewiness to my NARS Sheer Glow in winter though.

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  17. @Jen W: Thanks so much, I'm so glad you enjoyed it and yes I think foundation works differently on different people. I find it also matters how you prep the face i.e. moisturiser, primer etc. I do however LOVE the way you use Vitalumiere Aqua to add dewiness! Exactly how I would have used it. You're not a makeup artist are you?! Hehe. Thank you for the comment! x

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  18. Hi Kenneth, great article on foundations! I always love to see what other artists use, specially for skin? One of my favorites is FACE Atelier Ultra Pro Foundation have you tried it?
    Looking forward to reading the rest of your blog!
    x Monique

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  19. @Monique: Thanks lovely! I actually have been trying to get a set of Face Atelier foundations but then forgot about it as I had other products to use up etc. My friend uses them and she loves them. I will investigate asap. Thank you x

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  20. Those are some gorgeous foundations you have used.....U seem more of a collector of makeup being a makeup artiste......

    The finishes are so ethereal and they make me want one of each..I must say the Lancome Teint Miracle, Shiseido Refining foundation and Guerlain Lingerie De peau would be like jewels in ur makeup collection with such breathtaking finishes...

    Havent u tried Clinique foundations?? The Superbalanced Makeup is too nice to use...

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  21. @Neeraj: Haha thank you Neeraj, you're very poetic. I am just a makeup artist who likes having the best of tools for me to work with and experiment with. I haven't used Clinique for a long time but I will investigate asap. Thank you again for taking time to comment! x

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  22. Great post Kenneth... I'm a huge fan of Laura Mercier foundations but would really like to try the Shiseido after hearing you and others rave about it.
    Nic x

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  23. @Strawberry Blonde: Thanks Nic! I went through a phase of loving LM too but have since tried others. Not to say that they're not good. I just love different textures at different times of the year. Thank you for commenting and let me know if you try the Shiseido ones. X

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  24. This is a really great post! It was really interesting to see all the foundations that you use and how you've categorised them! You must have one heavy kit!! I have used the armani luminous silk in a sample sized version and I loved it but for some reason I never got around to purchasing it! What would you say is a great foundation for asian skin tones especially for asian bridal makeup. Asian brides seems to want heavy coverage but also want it to be imperceptible on the skin something which I have a hard time with especially when the bride as problematic, dehydrated and dry skin! It would also be great if you could do a concealer post ilke this!! xx

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  25. @blog-a-beaute: Hi and thanks for the comment. As for which foundation would be suitable, have you tried the Iman foundations? I recently have gotten very fond of the Luxury Radiance Liquid Makeup. It's pigment rich but yet melts into nothing on face. Gorgeous for asian or black skin tones. I will try and see if I can do a concealer post, although I rarely use it as I tend to do most of my skin work with foundation. Thanks x

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  26. Hi Kenneth, I love this post. Its always nice to see what makeup artists use. I have the Lingerie de Peau and Shiseido Perfect Refining foundations but I wouldn't put them as matte. Here in Malaysia where where its hot and humid it does stay longer than others but I do get a dewy effect as the day wears on. Perhaps its the weather :)

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  27. @Paris: Hi! You're so right, it all depends on the climate and in a place
    I've Malaysia where I grew up, anything would only get you a semi matte finish. It's just far too humid over there. In Europe they definitely give you a matter or semi matte finish. Thanks so much for the comment, am so glad you like the post. X

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  28. Wow,finally found someone who can comment on foundations and concealers for very dark skin. Thank you,keep it coming though so many people out there need to know about specific skin types. Any info on how to countour very dark skin? I'd nbe very grateful and so would many others.

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    1. Thank you for the comment and I would love to do a post on contouring for darker skin tones. One day I will. X

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