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Summer Beauty
Look for foundations that have a slightly yellowish cast to them. This may surprise you, but whether you’re pale or dark, you have some yellow undertones in your complexion. (Even if you’re extremely pale, a pink, peach or whitish shade will look chalky and old-fashioned.) A yellow-based foundation will blend beautifully into your skin tone, making it look fresh and healthy, which is exactly what a great foundation should do.
 
Use foundation to perfect your skin tone, not create a new one. It’s tempting to go a shade darker to give yourself a more tanned look–but that never ends up looking natural. Always try to match your exact skin tone.
Swatch your skin. In natural light, make a stripe of the foundation from your cheek to your jaw line, and gently blend it into your skin. Now do the same with another foundation that’s one shade lighter and another that’s one shade darker. The shade that’s imperceptible should be your pick, but double-check it against your forehead, since some women tend to be darker here. If it works in both areas, you’ve picked a winner.
 
Keep up with the seasons. I recommend having two foundations on hand–one for the winter months, when your skin is naturally paler, and one for the summer months, when your skin is slightly darker. For those in-between months, blend the two to develop your own custom shade. And year-round, mix the two to address any areas where your skin is darker or lighter.




Summer Beauty
You Have: A dull, dry complexion
You Want: Glowing, dewy skin
Try: A hydrating foundation. There are moisturizing foundations that deliver sheer coverage (like tinted moisturizers or balms) or medium to full coverage (like creamy liquids and whipped foundations). Stay away from powder and mattifying formulas. They’ll zap your skin of oils, leaving your skin looking dry and chalky.
 
You Have: Oily skin
You Want: Smooth, matte skin
Try: An oil-absorbing foundation. Look for buzzwords like oil-free, mattifying, or shine-reducing on the foundation’s packaging. As a general rule, oil-free or oil-reducing liquid foundations impart light to medium coverage, while cream and compact foundations give you full coverage.
 
You Have: Combination skin
You Want: A uniform complexion that’s neither shiny nor dry.
Try: A foundation with silica beads and lecithin. The silica beads soak up oil on your t-zone (forehead, nose & chin), while the lecithin hydrates dryer areas like your cheeks.