This past weekend I had the privilege of working with some very talented cosmetics professionals.
I was asked to give a workshop to help hone their make up artistry skills and I have to say it was a pleasure to be in the company of such eager and excited people. One of my favourite joys is to teach. It reminds me of all the fun the beauty industry offers.
One topic that came up, more than once, was the difficulty in matching foundation shades for their clients.
Yes even the pros have difficulty with this!
Here is my fail-proof method for chosing the correct shade of foundation. This works regardless of coverage or formula and my only caveat is: if you can't try the foundation on before you buy; don't buy!
Step 1 - Consider both the overtones and the undertones of the skin. Overtones are obvious and often seen through the centre of the face (ie pink or yellow). Undertones are a little trickier. Look at the neck to determine the undertone: fair, medium or dark. This changes with season and with time. Skin is a living organ and the foundation shade will need to be updated regularly.
Step 2 - All foundations are colour swatched according to: light, medium or dark undertones. Within each of these categories there are shades that are more pink (cool) or more yellow (warm). Choose three shades which match both your overtones (cool, neutral or warm) and your undertones (light, medium, dark). Apply directly to the jaw line in vertical stripes going toward the cheek leaving enough space between each selection to compare without confusing the colours. Be generous with the application it is important to see the colours clearly.
Step 3 - In natural light look at all three shades and determine the swatch which you cannot easily see where it begins and ends on your skin (can you see the top of the swatch or the bottom? this is the wrong shade for you). The one without a defined beginning or ending, on your face, will blend the most naturally to your skin.
Last tip - always apply foundation with a brush (even liquid) not a sponge. You will use less make up and the look will be more polished.
Ok it is true—I have been MIA for a little while. Rest assured I am back now.
Truth is I have been working on a massive project about which I cannot yet tell you, yet. Very soon though I will be writing about an amazing new concept store that is opening in Canada. Oh no I have already said too much! Stay tuned to this blog to learn more in the coming weeks.
All that said many Yummy Mummies have been emailing me (and remember you can email all your beauty related questions directly to me at www.danielthompsonbeauty.com or by leaving comments here) asking for tips to help their skin during this bleak and dry period called a Canadian winter.
On Staurday night I was walking to a friend's place for some drinks and I was reminded that when the mercury drops below 0 how quickly the skin suffers. By the time I walked the 10 minutes from my place to his my skin was frozen and completely dehydrated. Being inside was of little help. The dryness from the heat only made the problem worse. By the time I got home and remoistruized my skin was red, irritated and actually falking. And this was just one outing on a cold January night. Luckily I had a few tricks up my sleeve to repair my skin right away.
So for all of you who want solutions to the havoc winter weather causes on your skin:
1. Moisturize - yes this is obvious but there is a simple trick to making any moisturizer work more effectively. Apply your moisturizer to slighlty damp skin—either right out of the shower or when it is still slightly wet from washing. This speeds the transdermal migration of the moisturizer and increases water intake.
2. Reduce washing - stop washing the skin twice per day. Go down to once a day (at night only). Excessive washing will cause lipids to deplete and increase surface dehydration. Also use warm water to wash not hot. The hotter the water the more quickly the skin will dry out.
3. Exfoliate - but no more than once per week. Either use a moistruzer with a built-in exfoliateor (like AHA's) or manually exfoliate. By removing the surface keratinized skin all treatment products will work more effectively.
4. NMF replacement - natural moistruizing factors are produced by the skin to impede dehydration. Unfortunately they also deplete very quickly in cold weather. Using any NMF based oil will quickly restore these important lipids and create a smooth, radiant complexion. And no you don't need some expensive mask or serum to achieve this. Simple virgin olive oil will do the trick. A small amount applied directly to the skin before bed will restore the NMF levels almost immediately.