Then one day I found myself away from home for an extended period of time without having packed my foundation. I found myself in a drugstore without a clue. I stood around awkwardly pumping what little testers they had available onto my hand, with a curious beauty department cashier asking me constantly if I needed help. She watched me like a hawk, and I finally just grabbed what looked good enough and hoped for the best.
I am a frequent commenter over at reddit's MakeupAddiction and one thing you will always see MUA's discussing is the quest to find the perfect foundation. You'll read stuff about undertones and oxidization and finish and coverage, and it's a never-ending struggle for a lot of people. Foundation performance can also depend a lot on skincare routine, products it is paired with (setting powders and primers, for example), and method of application. Foundation can be scary and a downright chore to purchase and apply. And they can get really expensive, ranging from $30-70 CAD for mid-to-high end at a shop like Sephora.
The good thing is that you can often try samples, get a Pantone colour IQ done at Sephora (where they use technology and a huge database to match you to product shades) , and do some research of your own on colour theory and undertones. It doesn't always make the journey to find a good product for you completely smooth, but it can certainly help iron out some of the kinks.
I decided the other day I wanted to be a big girl and try to find a mid-range brand of foundation that I like - I have a gift card for Sephora, and the sale is coming up next week as well. Hopefully this helps some other pale girls to find a new brand, drugstore or mid-range, to try out.
Here is a comparison of some stuff I have been using.
MUFE Ultra HD Y215 - not pictured, I am using a sample currently
Avon Ideal Flawless SPF 15 Light Ivory
Hard Candy Glamoflauge Ivory
L'oreal Infallible 18HR Classic Ivory
Rimmel Stay Matte Light Porcelain
|Left to right: Rimmel Stay Matte, L'oreal Infallible, Hard Candy Glamoflauge, Avon Ideal Flawless, MUFE Ultra HD
|same order as above - in direct sunlight
|wearing MUFE Ultra HD in shade Y215 / additional face proucts include
Hard Candy primer and Physicians Formula CC powder,
I like the Makeup Forever Ultra HD foundation because it is marketed at medium-full coverage, but can definitely be sheered out. Even built up for more coverage, it's not cakey or unnatural looking. Paired with my powder, it doesn't cake up, either. The Sephora cast member who helped me out said it's very popular for people who are photographed or on television/film, it really does make you look quite flawless and smooth. The colour range is amazing, I'm used to drugstore options where you have "sort of pale but really I'm much whiter than this" and then "orange or yellow" and then "OK, too dark." I'm not 100% sure how the naming works, but MUFE seems to have a similar system to MAC where it's based on undertones. Their lightest shade is almost straight up white, so if you're much lighter than me, there is a pale girl shade for you guaranteed!
My other favourite foundation that I've been using is the L'oreal Infallible. I don't use it in the winter because if my skin does get dry from the wind/lack of humidity and blowing my nose on tissues.. it does accentuate some flaking. That's my only complaint, the colour is a good match - even though my shade for MUFE looks a bit more yellow and this one is a bit more pink.
The Hard Candy Glamoflauge is a bit too light, so I try to pair it with a good bronzer or something to balance it out. I didn't have a tester or anything, so that was simply a "hope for the best" drugstore purchase. The Rimmel Stay Matte is a bit too light and pink as well, but it works for the winter months as I'm not really outside and stay quite pale. Strangely enough, even though it is a matte formula, it doesn't make my skin look dry like I might expect it to.
I still want to give Tarte's Rainforest of the Sea and Too Faced's Born This Way a try before I make the big purchase. Have you tried any of these 3 ranges from Sephora?