Foundation: The Must-Have Beauty Basic

July 12, 2013 • Beauty, Fashion Blog


What make-up product can’t you live without? For many women, it’s foundation, or an alternative such as tinted moisturizer or BB cream. But applying foundation can be tricky – done correctly, it can provide a flawless, healthy look. Applied incorrectly, foundation can look obvious, orange, or uneven.

The beauty industry has been creating new products that are lighter and come in numerous shades; many contain added benefits such as sunscreen and offer a clearer complexion. This is a far cry from the foundation of the past, which tended to be heavy and only available in a limited variety of shades.

Foundation is the product that makes the most money for most beauty brands, even though shopping for and applying it is considered a chore among many women. Think about it – is shopping for foundation as fun as shopping for a new lipstick or nail polish?

But many women apply it for the sheer fact that it evens the skin tone, creating a more polished look. In a Proctor and Gamble focus-group study, participants were shown pictures of women without make-up and women with a “natural” look, in which women wore foundation. The participants were divided into two groups – one group were shown the photos for a fraction of a second, while the other group looked at the photos for as long as they wanted. Both groups found the lightly made-up women to be more trustworthy, likable, competent, and attractive in comparison to the photos with bare faced women. Foundation really is what its name implies – the base for a woman’s complete beauty look.

That’s why brands have started to create new formulas, like Clinique’s recently released Moisture Surge CC Cream, which contains sunscreen and says it corrects a variety of skin concerns, such as redness and sallowness. BB and CC creams – a step up from tinted moisturizers – are the fastest growing facial makeup, probably because they have added benefits that many other products don’t have.

Retailers have also started to help women in their hunt for the perfect foundation. Sephora’s new skin-identifying system, called Color IQ, brings up a list with every product in the store that matches the shopper’s skin tone. Partnering with Pantone, Sephora uses a hand-held device that snaps photos from three different areas of the shopper’s make-up free face. The system then analyzes the sample, assigning the customer to one of 110 different Pantone SkinTone IDs.


With all of the new options available out there, one thing’s for sure: buying foundation is getting a lot more fun!

– Tanisha Wallis

Source: Wall Street Journal

Photos: Sephora, Wall Street Journal

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