Welcome to my new blog!!
As a busy MUA (Make Up Artist) I get to try a huge variety of skincare, make up and make up tools – It has long been my intention to share with you my thoughts on my favourite products, my not so favourite products and the products I just can’t live without!! Finally, whilst designing my new website with my web designer I decided to commit to doing regular blog posts and have set aside a section of my website dedicated to these posts.
A little bit about me first so you can understand what I look for in my own products. My skin – quite simply it sucks! Clients, when I say to you you’ve got amazing skin, I’m not only telling you you’re blessed to have a flawless complexion, I’m also secretly screaming with jealousy inside because I’d give anything to have clear, blemish free, non irritable skin….and believe me I have spent a fortune trying products to achieve this and finally I feel like I may actually be getting somewhere!
So, with this in mind I have decided to dedicate my first post to FOUNDATION! If you can achieve a flawless, natural, blemish free base, then you have the fundamentals to make any look whether it’s daytime neutral or an evening sassy smokey look incredible.
Primer….what’s it for?
I always use primer – it’s like the double sided sticky tape between your skin and the foundation. It gives a more even, longer lasting finish and I firmly believe I use less foundation because I use primer.
When applying primer on clients, for hygiene reasons I use a brush, but when applying my own I just use my hands. Apply on freshly moisturised skin prior to applying your foundation.
Now, which primer to use? Well there’s certainly a selection for you to choose from. Firstly, do you find your skin oily? Dry? Combination? Do you want a matte finish? Dewy finish? Here are my favourites:
Matte finish, ideal for oily skin:
Illamasqua Matte Veil £32
An oil control primer, Matte Veil preps the skin to create the perfect matte base for make-up application. It’s mattifying cream-gel formula absorbs excess oil whilst retaining the skin`s natural moisture levels, providing a silky, soft finish.
This is a permanent fixture in my kit.
MAC Matte £16
A matte-ifying cream that acts like a powder, M·A·C Matte adds a sheer, no-shine matte texture in one smooth layer. May be used on bare or made-up skin.
Dry Skin, hydrating or Illuminating primers:
Illamasqua Hydra Veil £32
Part hydrator, part primer, Hydra Veil instantly hydrates and smooths skin through a self-levelling, futuristic clear gel. Microalgae, Vitamin C and B3 work together to help maintain skins hydration levels, creating a healthy looking, balanced finish.
Another permanent kit favourite
Laura Mercier Foundation Primer Radiance £29
The universal pearl tint creates a soft focus effect to minimize the look of imperfections with a radiant finish. Not great for photographic make up however as I found it gives a bounceback.
My current absolute favourites and good all rounders are:
Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer 10ml £20/30ml £52
A mineral-based, water-resistant primer with SPF 15 that creates an impossibly smooth canvas and seamless look.
Veil eliminates redness, minimizes pore size, softens fine lines and creates a uniform canvas for a flawless makeup application……seriously, it’s awesome!!
Tom Ford Complexion Enhancing Primer £54
This hydrating primer, featuring the tom ford infusing complex, bridges the worlds of skincare and makeup. It brightens skin`s undertone, reversing signs of dullness or fatigue, and helps neutralize the appearance of discoloration while minimizing the look of pores. Available in 2 shades; Pink for fair/light skin tones and Peach for medium to darker skintones.
Fingers…..sponges…..brushes….which one is best??
Well, I’ll start with saying the only time I use a sponge is a beauty blender to softly blend concealers, cream contour products and colour correctors. Apart from this I hate sponges. You waste so much product in to the sponge, and lets face it a good foundation is not cheap!!
Fingers, you can’t blend your foundation out to a natural finish however I do use my fingers to warm colour corrector around the eye area. The heat from my fingers softens the product and makes it easier to blend out to a seamless finish.
So – I use a brush! Any client or lady who has had a make up lesson with me will tell you I have one ultimate brush. The Bobbi Brown Full Coverage brush, you’ll get the most natural, even and gorgeous finish with this brush and you can use it with cream, mousse and stick products.
Start from the centre of the face and work your way out (we tend to need less product around the perimeter of the face, sticking to this helps avoid a cakey mask like look). Buff in small circular motions, this allows the foundation to be buffed in to your skin giving a natural look and a longer lasting one too!
Bobbi Brown Full Coverage Face Brush £31
Setting your base
The 2 key benefits to setting your make up with a powder after you have applied your foundation are:
Longevity – It will help lengthen the time you get out of your foundation before you feel you might need to top up.
Shine Control – If, like me, you suffer from oily skin or an oily T-Zone then powder will temporarily eliminate this. A compact pressed powder is great for carrying in your bag to quickly blot away shine throughout the day and is a quick easy fix to topping up and refreshing your base.
Personally I much prefer a pressed powder to a loose powder for setting my makeup. Have you ever experienced a burst loose powder inside your Mulberry bag – it’s painful let me tell you!! Aside from that, I hate the residue loose powder can leave. Some loose powders I have found give a really terrible and unflattering bounceback when photographed also.
My go to pressed powders, and what I have in my kit are:
Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Pressed Powder £26
I carry shades Pale Yellow, Sunny Beige, Soft Sand, Warm Natural and Soft Honey.
MAC Blot Powder Pressed £20.50
I carry shades Light, Medium and Dark.
My favourite foundations
Probably the most important part of this blog, what are my favourite go to foundations?? I have detailed below the ones I love, what the manufacturers claim and my reasons for recommending them.
Estee Lauder Double Wear £30
15-hour staying power. Flawless all day. This worry-free, long-wearing makeup stays fresh and looks natural through heat, humidity, nonstop activity.
Won’t change colour, smudge or come off on clothes. Feels lightweight and comfortable.
This really does stay put all day, gives a stunning flawless finish with a buildable coverage from medium to full. A fantastic range of shades and tones also.
Chantecaille Future Skin £60
This innovative oil-free, skin-smoothing foundation offers great coverage with a refreshing, lightweight texture.
A gel foundation with a unique ability to transfer water into the skin without the use of any oil, containing charged water and seaweed it is perfect for oily and combination skin.
A light coverage so not for those who want to cover heavily blemished skin but an absolutely gorgeous foundation for those who need an oil free solution without a matte finish. This is my holy grail, it has without a doubt helped clear up my breakouts because it doesn’t clog my pores and saturate my skin with oil.
Illamasqua Skin Base £32.50
Lightweight, easily blendable foundation is suitable for most skin types and smooths, softens and conditions thanks to skin boosting Vitamin C and E.
A medium coverage foundation which a lot of my clients like. A really good range of tones and shades, probably one of the best foundations I have found for us very pale cool toned girls!
Bobbi Brown Skin Stick Foundation £29.50
The ultimate nude foundation—Bobbi’s iconic Foundation Stick gets an update with a unique transparent base plus skin tone correct pigments for an incredibly natural look. Its creamy yet weightless texture applies effortlessly and blends seamlessly so all you see is fresh, smooth, even skin.
The most used foundation in my kit and the only foundation that I have used that does actually look like it’s your skin on a really good day. A Medium coverage foundation which can be built up to a medium/full coverage. Good for all skin types and lasts really well. Photographs beautifully! Buffs in to the skin effortlessly and leaves a natural looking glow.
Thanks for reading my first blog and I hope you have both enjoyed it and gained some useful tips and recommendations!
Please note all views, opinions and comments in my blog are my own impartial views and are in no way associated with the brands or manufacturers mentioned or recommended. Please also note I cannot give direct 1:1 recommendations without meeting clients and discussing their own skin types and requirements. With this in mind, I cannot take any responsibility for any adverse reactions from products used, I always recommend trialling a product with a patch test if you feel you may have some kind of reaction.