What's your current technique to apply foundation?

I usually use half a pump to one pump of each shade (I am usually mixing two shades) on one fingertip, then mixing on my face and dabbing a bit on each cheek, forehead, touch on the nose, and on my chin. I’ll usually dab a liquid illuminator in the same places (next to the foundation bits), and then I’ll use a rounder, flatter synthetic brush to buff and blend everything together. I like to let everything settle and dry down, and then I’ll dust translucent powder all over.

— Christine


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Mariella Avatar

I also use about a pump and dab/dot it around my face and then blend with my beloved Shiseido foundation brush. I want to try your technique, Christine, of dotting some illuminator next to the CC cream (in past, I’ve mixed them on the back of my hand or on a plastic “palette” (really, just the lid of a yogourt container!) but I like the idea of your way of doing it. Might give it a go today!

Veronica Avatar

1-2 pumps, depending on which one I’m using (Right now, it is between Tarte Face tape (1 pump) and YSL All Hours (2 pumps)), and I blend it in with the Clinique foundation brush in a circular motion combined with stippling.

I don’t love sponges, and I have found that this brush is really nice when blending in foundation into the skin.

Seraphine Avatar

For some weird reason, I’m awkward with pumps, so I just pour out a bit of Estée Lauder Double Wear on the back of my hand, dab it on my cheeks, nose, chin, and forehead with my fingers, then use my Sephora #56 brush to buff it in. Then under eye concealer, and finally, I set it all with RCMA No Color Powder (day) or Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder (evening).

Celesta Avatar

It depends on the foundation/bb cream. With a more satin/medium coverage foundation I use a damp sponge and stipple it on from the back of my hand. If it’s a BB cream or more light coverage/glowy foundation, I blend it in with my fingers.

janine Avatar

I use the technique I saw by the muse mua. You stipple the foundation all over the face starting in the middle. Then I sometimes go over with a damp sponge ( my favorite is from Sona k at target) if the coverage is heavy or color alittle off.the sponge is my own deal.
Prior to this I have a palette and mixer Stick if I combine but I don’t use my fingers at all.

Wednesday Avatar

It’s always a mixed concoction leaning towards the dewier side of base products and I typically have 5 products in active rotation. This number seems to give me enough options for various coverage and base types. I prepare my mix on the back of my hand dot product in areas where I need most coverage and then blend out with a dampened sponge. I prefer to work in thin layers which is sufficient for much of my complexion and then go back in on areas like cheek, nose, chin to seal the deal. I follow with a spray and I go back in very lightly with sponge.

I hate putting foundation on during these dark mornings. I have a tendency to see my skin differently without the aid of natural light and I wind up with a little too much foundation. Not cakey bad, but just that bit more than necessary over my red areas. I did it this morning as I was in a rush for a meeting.

Leo Avatar

My skin isn’t as smooth as I’d like it to be, and I have a lot of redness from rosacea and pores that show up easily if you just skim over the skin. To apply my CC cream or foundation, I live for those cheap triangle-shaped “beauty wedge” sponges. I tear them in half and sponge on product with the torn/raggedy end. Sounds crazy and not chic at all, but I swear that makes all the difference in evening things out. (If you have nice, flat skin, then a nice, flat Beautyblender will work, but a sponge that’s a little bumpy seems to get into the nooks and crannies of bumpier skin!) I just dab and press until the product seems to disappear into my skin. On days when I want more redness coverage, I’ll press a little more product into select areas with a slightly rounded synthetic brush.

Rachel R. Avatar

As far as tools, it depends on the product. Usually, I use a damp Beauty Blender or similar type sponge. For runnier liquids, I like a really dense, soft brush.

First, I apply primer using my fingers. Then I dot the liquid or cream foundation on my forehead, cheeks, nose, and chin. Then I blend together with the Beauty Blender. I set with powder.

With powder foundations, I usually use a water-based primer. I use a flat-top kabuki brush to buff it into my skin in downward circles. I repeat if I need a little more coverage. I usually follow with a mineral veil powder or setting powder, but not always.

KD Avatar

The foundation I use has a little paddle applicator (Wet n Wild PhotoFocus) so I put a little dollop of that on the back of my hand mixed with a blue pigment corrector to cool it down. After mixing it up I smear some on my cheeks and forehead and blend it in with an air puff.

Ana Maria Avatar

Depending on foundation, I use half to a full pump/squeeze of foundation on one fingertip, smear it equal parts to each of my cheeks and a smaller amount on my forehead; then I blend everything with my fingers. For the last months I just love how foundation applies with my fingers; I just can’t be bothered to use brushes or sponges anymore.

Nan Avatar

I think many people look fab with this technique! But for some reason I hate having foundation all over my hands! It never feels like it gets clean enough after I scrub. I’ll have to give it more chances. And you’re right– less brushes to take care of.

Blanca Avatar

You might want to have make up removing wipes (cheap ones) nearby to clean your hands when done! I do that every day since I mix my foundation with illuminating fluid on the back of my hand before I pick it up with a brush, and I also apply cream blush with my fingers. I use the wipe then a quick hand wash and I’m ready to go!

woodstock_schulz Avatar

I always apply a moisturizer with SPF as a first layer. Then my primer (these days it’s the Milk hydro-grip one.) I use two and a 1/2 pumps of foundation (I use the Laura Mercier radiant foundation and I think that pump doesn’t dispense a ton of product in one pump, which is actually good because I don’t waste any), and just dot it on my face, focusing on the center and around my mouth (where I have some hyper-pigmentation) and a little under my eyes. I like to use a damp beauty sponge to blend as I feel this gives me the best (most natural) finish. I have used a flat foundation brush before and found it left streaks. I have the UD optical blurring brush, which is ok but I think I prefer the sponge. I don’t use concealer or powder to set unless I’m going to a party/wedding or something.

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