How to Buy Foundation and Concealer Online

Follow these basic steps to ensure you’re making the right colour selection when shopping the Web and you won’t ever have to worry about “returns.”

Selecting the right shade of foundation or concealer can be tricky in real life, never mind online. In bricks-and-mortar stores, a beauty adviser is there to hold your hand, show you where the mirror is and help examine your jawline where you may have swatched a few samples. So what hope does one have in finding the best foundation match when there isn’t a human in sight?

For starters, check out the foundation shade finder feature on Simply locate the product you’re interested in, and then click on the “Try On” button to activate your device’s camera. Next, click on the icons on the right to virtually try the shades on. This feature is available with all colour products on the site; you can even see what lipsticks and eyeshadows look like on you. For foundation in particular, though, the shade you’re trying on should virtually disappear in your reflection if it’s really the best natural-looking one for you.

But there are a couple of other clues that can help you figure out how to choose the best foundation and concealer before adding them to your shopping cart. Start by asking yourself “What is my undertone?” As the term suggests, this refers to the unalterable tint beneath your skin tone. (Your skin tone, however, can actually change depending on how much sun you’ve been getting.) Cool undertones tend to have a pinkish or bluish cast, while warm undertones have a yellow or golden tint. Neutral undertones, on the other hand, don’t have any obvious hidden tones below the surface—because they’re so similar to your skin’s outer pigment.

To figure out your undertone, there’s always the old vein trick. Do yours appear bright blue or even purplish? That means you’re cool. Or do your veins have a green tinge? In that case, you’re warm. Another clue is to assess the jewellery you like to wear. People with warm or olive undertones tend to like how gold jewellery looks on them. If you’ve always been a silver wearer, you could have more of a cool undertone. Same goes for wearing white. Warmer-toned skin types will gravitate to cream clothing, whereas cooler-toned skin types are attracted to crisp whites.

Figuring out your skin’s natural undertone helps make it easier to shop for foundation and concealer online. While it’s easy enough to spot makeup for pale skin or makeup for dark skin, it’s much trickier to choose between the nuances within each group. If you have a cool undertone, you’ll want to examine the tiny shade boxes for those with a pinkier cast. Avoid yellowish shades; they will leave you looking sallow. Those with warmer undertones should seek out shades that look a tad yellower on the screen. Meanwhile, those with a neutral undertone can opt for a slight peachy effect in whichever shade group they fall into.

Now that finding your shade is sorted, all you need to do is find your dream foundation formula. If your skin type is normal, shop for a natural-finish foundation that has a second-skin effect, like L’Oréal Paris True Match Super-Blendable Makeup. If you have dry skin, seek out a foundation with words like “glow” and “radiance” on the label, such as L’Oréal Paris Infallible Pro Glow Foundation, which provides medium coverage along with brightening benefits. For combination skin, L’Oréal Paris Infallible 24 Hour Fresh Wear Foundation is a lightweight, long-wear formula that offers medium to full coverage along with oil absorbers to keep shine at bay. And for oily skin types, try a powder option like

L’Oréal Paris Infallible Pro Matte Powder Foundation to keep your complexion looking matte all day.

Even concealer formulas vary in what they can do. If your main goal is to blur fine lines and wrinkles, you’ll want a medium-coverage formula that blends easily without settling into crevices. Sound like you? Try L’Oréal Paris True Match Multi-Use Concealer on for size. On the other hand, if your mission is to cover imperfections, acne and scars, you’ll need to bring in the big guns with a highly pigmented, full-camouflage concealer that won’t transfer. If this is you, you’ll love L’Oréal Paris Infallible Full Wear Concealer; it comes with an extra-large doe-foot applicator so you can use as much as you want for maximum coverage where you need it.

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