What is Foundation Makeup and When is the Best Time to Use it

a lady watching a video on how to apply make up

Foundation is an essential product if you want to achieve the perfect base for any makeup look. It gives you a blank canvas to build on.

Unless you are #blessed, your skin probably isn't naturally flawless. You are not a doll, after all. Imperfections are part of being human, but if you ever want to cover the ones on your skin, we know just what you need. 

Foundation can make or break any makeup look. A bad foundation can break down, leaving a splotchy appearance, ruining an otherwise great makeup look. At the same time, a high-quality foundation will go on evenly and stay smooth all day.

Foundation 101

Foundation has been around for centuries, and it has only gotten better over time. It is applied all over the face to create the appearance of smooth skin.

The early history of foundation paved the way for the formulas and techniques we use today. Ancient Greeks and Romans were the first to start experimenting with this kind of makeup. However, they used harmful ingredients like white lead and mercury.

Thankfully, today's foundations have ingredients that can help instead of hurt your skin. Foundation is made from a few basic ingredients, like moisturizer, colorant, and fillers. Companies can add other ingredients to do things like fight blemishes or brighten skin. 

There are many different kinds of foundations on the market today, so let's take a closer look at two of the most common: liquid and powder foundations.  

Liquid Foundation

Liquid foundation is one of the most popular options for face makeup. It comes in a liquid form in tubes and bottles. This type of foundation is designed to blend flawlessly into your skin. The main ingredient in a liquid foundation is water or silicone, which allows for an easier streak-free application. 

Many liquid foundations can help keep your skin hydrated and protected from the elements. Finding a liquid foundation that is weightless and hydrating is essential if you don't want your skin to become dry or cakey—and that’s where HIDE comes in. 

Powder Foundation

Powder foundation is another popular type of foundation on the market today. 

Different pigments and minerals are combined to make a powder foundation. This foundation is dry and can be either sold pressed or in a loose powder form.

Powder foundations can sometimes be harder to apply correctly and effectively. You need to be able to blend it evenly with a large powder brush. 

Some people believe that if they have oily skin, they can only use a powder foundation, but this isn't necessarily true. Many liquid foundations are great for oily skin types and offer more coverage than most powder foundations. 

Foundation Coverage Types

Foundation comes in a variety of different coverages. Some offer the 'my skin but better' look. In contrast, others will leave no trace of a blemish or skin imperfection, lending you a smooth, even tone. 

Since there are so many foundations on the market today, it can be hard to know which one is the right one for you. A great foundation is buildable, so you don't need more than one product to achieve the look you're going for on a given day.

There are four main types of coverages when it comes to foundation: sheer, light, medium, and full. 

Sheer Coverage

As the name implies, sheer coverage offers just a hint of coverage. Sheer coverage is great for days when you just want to look slightly more put together but don't need to go all out. 

The small amount of makeup gives your skin a very natural look, but it’s not going to conceal any significant redness or dark spots.

Light Coverage

Light coverage is still going to give you that no-makeup makeup look while still providing more pigment than sheer foundations.

You can blend this type of foundation out where you don't think you need it and use it in places you do without obvious lines. Light coverage foundations are still pretty incognito on the skin.

Light coverage foundations aren't usually buildable. If you want something to cover imperfections on your skin, look for higher coverage products

Medium Coverage

Medium coverage foundations allow you to cover a decent amount. 

You should be able to even your skin tone, cover dark spots, and conceal small blemishes. Medium coverage won't mask it all, but you can apply a more sheer layer in places where you want to give your skin a chance to show through and build it up in the places where you want more coverage.

If you think you'll want medium coverage regularly but are still looking for the ability to cover anything, there is a way to achieve this. Most medium coverage foundations are buildable. You just need to apply a few layers to get there. 

Full Coverage

A full coverage foundation is the go-to when you're trying to cover everything. Consider it an eraser for any kind of redness from a blemish or dark spot. 

You won't even have the natural shadows left on your face. It will be a completely blank slate for the rest of your makeup, like bronzer, blush, and highlighter. 

If you're going for a complete glam look, you definitely want to use a full coverage foundation. Medium-full coverage foundations are very buildable and can easily give you that flawless appearance without a lot of effort.

There are a lot of full coverage foundations out there, but you really can hide anything with HIDE Premium Foundation. We have a custom formula that is lightweight and buildable, making it easy to wear every day. 

Sometimes the worst part of wearing a full coverage foundation is feeling like your makeup is caked on or that your skin can't breathe. HIDE's oil-free formula resists sweat and humidity so it won't clog pores. 

When to Use Foundation 

There are no hard and fast rules to when you should or shouldn't use foundation. 

If using foundation every day, no matter where you’re going, is your jam, then go for it! 

If you’re going to be active, don’t sweat it (see what we did there?). A waterproof foundation will last through sweat and humidity, leaving you with that same flawless complexion that you had when you started. 

You can apply a thin layer of a medium to full coverage foundation for a natural, shine-free finish when you want a more casual makeup look. If a thin layer of your med-full coverage foundation isn't sheer enough for you, consider mixing it with moisturizer to reach the exact coverage you're looking for.

A full glam makeup look calls for that full coverage base layer. It's the perfect foundation for strong contour and a smokey eye. You don't want blemishes or discoloration peaking through your foundation in a full glam look because it can take away from the other makeup. 

If you have a job interview, a party, or a date, that could be an opportunity to try a full-coverage foundation look so you can really get your glam on. 

How to Apply Foundation

If you are new to makeup, applying something all over your face might feel overwhelming. Even if you’ve been using makeup for years, you might not have never mastered your foundation application. With a few simple steps and tips, you can nail it!

The first step is to make sure you are starting with clean and moisturized skin. Stick with a solid skincare routine that works for your particular skin type, and you should be prepped to go. A good base for your foundation will go a long way in how well it goes on and stays on.

To Prime or Not to Prime

Once you have taken care of your skin, you still might benefit from one extra step before you dive in with the foundation.

The right primer, when applied correctly, can help keep your foundation in place for longer and make sure you have a perfectly prepped canvas for your makeup to work its magic. For example, if you struggle with oily skin, a mattifying primer applied to the areas where you get oily can be a great asset to have in your makeup bag. If you’re looking for a little extra glow, there are also illuminating primers out there—it all depends on the look that you’re going for. 

Foundation Application

You should apply your foundation before any other face makeup and then go in with a concealer, if necessary. As mentioned before, there are many different kinds of foundation, but let's go over how to apply a liquid foundation.

A duo-fiber foundation brush is e a great tool to apply your liquid foundation because it's easy to blend with and doesn't absorb a lot of product. 

An egg-shaped beauty sponge is also a great tool to have. Wet your sponge and squeeze out excess water before using it to prevent the sponge from absorbing all of the product, and make sure you blend in small bouncing motions. 

Place some of the foundation on the back of your non-dominant hand and dip the sponge in. Once you have the product on your sponge, dab it over the places you need the most coverage. 

You want to move from the center of your face outward when applying foundation. This will help when blending your foundation onto other areas of your skin, like your neck. You want to sheer out the coverage after your chin and down your neck. This ensures that you don't get that dreaded foundation line!

In Summary

There are many different types of foundations out there that have varying degrees of coverage. A full coverage foundation that’s buildable is the most versatile for everyday wear, and a product like HIDE comes with all kinds of bonuses that make it even more worth wearing. Foundation is really an essential product for every makeup bag.



Decoding Foundation | WebMD

Foundations | Cosmetics Info

Gold Full-Face Makeup Tutorial | ogleschool.edu