Buying makeup online can be difficult because nearly everyone likes to see and feel the makeup before committing. Working with an Artist properly trained in color matching will make your online shopping experience so much more pleasant. Whether you’re a potential customer or a fellow Artist looking to understand the art of foundation color matching, you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s start at the very beginning. It’s a very good place to start.
First off, you may have heard the terms “cool, warm, and neutral undertones” being thrown around while picking foundations. Do you know how to find yours and do you know why they make a difference?
Skin Tone vs. Undertone
Skin tone and undertone are not the same. Skin tone can be described as Very Fair to Medium to Deep depending on the melanin present in a person’s outer skin. Undertone is the color that lies beneath your skin, creating shadow of warm, cool, or neutral color beneath your skin tone.
3 Ways to Find your Undertone
Here are a few ways to find your undertone easily:
- What color do your veins appear? Look at the inside of your wrist. Your blood is blue so depending on your undertone, your veins will appear blue, green, or blue-green. Blue = cool, Green = warm, Blue-Green = Neutral.
- What colors look best on you? Drape a bright blue or white shirt against yourself. Then use an orange/rust or cream shirt. Which colors are most flattering? If the blue/white makes you look alive, you have cool undertones. If the orange/cream coloring makes you radiate, you have warm undertones. And if the whole rainbow looks great on you, you are neutral.
- What jewelry looks best on you? If you find yourself wearing silver or platinum jewelry frequently, your undertone is cool. If gold or yellow-toned jewelry pops on you more, then you have warm undertones. If both tones of jewelry look great, you are neutral.
Let’s chiggity check out my nifty little color wheel for a visual. The left side of the color wheel consists of cool colors, while the right side consists of warm colors. Neutral colors are those that meet in the middle between the two.
Colors are split on the wheel as: Primary, Secondary, Tertiary, and color pairings work well as Analogous or Complimentary.
Analogous: Colors that lie next to each other on the color wheel. When paired, they are subdued and blend well.
Complimentary: Colors directly across from one another on the color wheel. When paired, they really pop. Complimentary colors are used to determine the best shades to use to color correct and conceal tones and blemishes.
The Color Match
We’re almost there! The perfect color match!
- You can visually recognize a skin tone (fair, medium, deep, etc).
- You know how to identify your undertone.
- Last step is to assess skin for redness, scarring, blemishes, etc. Color correcting and concealing will take your foundation color match from “ok” to “Wow, check out that GLOW!”
If your skin has discolorations or uneven tones, you can use analogous colors to color correct and even out skin tone. If you have dark circles, redness (like rosacea), blemishes, etc, you can use complimentary tones to color correct and conceal.
Check out the chart below to help you recognize the Maskcara Beauty highlight foundation shade that works best for various combinations of skin tone, undertone, and color correcting/concealing. Remember, that some faces may require more than one highlight to create the best look.
All Maskcara Beauty contours have a cool base to create a lovely shadow to accentuate or minimize features. Although all our contours have a cool base, some are more cool than others. Use the chart above to identify a color that works well with your skin tone and undertone. Warm contours are: Walnut, Stone, Indigo. Cool contours are: Aspen, Ash, and Shadow. Neutral contours are: Olive, Astoria, and Cola.
If you’re not satisfied with the color match you purchased, exchange for or add a shade higher or lower if you notice any of the following:
- Patchy or splotchy application – a good match will apply smooth like butter!
- Trouble blending – a good match will blend easily with your Perfector or blending brush
- Accentuated lines, dryness, or pores – a good match will blur into your skin (a good skin care routine, like exfoliating your skin is important too!)
- “Cakey” appearance even with a light hand – again, a good match is smooth like butter!
Color Correct & Conceal
The beauty of Maskcara Beauty tins is that at only $14 a pop, you can add another tin into your palette to color correct or conceal. A few of our highlight and lip+cheek shades also work well for combating redness, blemishes, and dark circles.
- Mild red pimple or blemish: Use a yellow to light orange tone to conceal (sunlit, amber, or wheat)
- Redness or rosacea: Use a yellow to green tone to color correct (sunlit, june, or wheat)
- Dark brown/dark blue/purple undereye circles: Use an orange/peach tone (amber, mango, or goddess highlights or frenchie lip+cheek)
- Light Blue/purple undereye circles: Use a red, pink, or orange tone (dab scarlet, petal, or pink grapefruit lip+cheek, or use amber or mango highlights)
Makeup is an art, so your color choices are subjective. There’s no rules for what lip+cheek colors work best, just use what you enjoy! Three guidelines I do like to advise are:
- Keep your lip and blush colors within the same analogous color family (pink with pink, red with red, etc).
- Lip and cheek colors in your undertone family tend to suit you best. Cooler undertones look best in cooler shades of red, fuchsia or pinky nudes, while warmer undertones glow in corals, peachy nudes, and warm reds.
- Found a color that isn’t quite right, but you really want to make work? Mix it with another shade or use a bit of indigo or cola contour to deepen the hue.