Every woman knows that it can be really tough to find the perfect shade of foundation. One has to wade through a sea of shades, trying to figure out which product is the perfect match for their skin. A lot of brands have begun offering an even wider range of color options, which is fantastic, but the issue still remains — how can we pick the perfect match?
For many women, the idea of color-adjusting foundation is a total game changer. After all, what could be better than finding a product that automatically matches the skin, no effort required? Allure took a deep dive into the world of color-adjusting foundation, chatting with some cosmetic chemists to get the truth on how they work, and, well, if they work at all.
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Obviously, it's not magic that makes the shade change when it hits the skin — it's science. The majority of color-adjusting products, cosmetic chemist Ni'Kita Wilson explains, use tiny encapsulated pigments that essentially burst when users rub the foundation on the skin. There are four main pigments in most formulations — titanium dioxide, red iron oxide, yellow iron oxide and black iron oxide — that combine to create the perfect match. Or, so we would hope.
Many experts agree that, while color-adjusting foundation could potentially work for someone with a more medium skin tone who falls somewhere in the middle shade ranges of typical foundations. But anyone who is at either end of the spectrum — either with very fair skin or darker skin — will have a tough time getting a perfect match, even with the supposedly color-adjusting foundation.
It seems that if it feels too good to be true, it just might be. We're absolutely loving that so many brands are increasing the shade range of their foundations, so customers just may have to put in a little extra time and effort finding the perfect match. And, a custom approach works better than a supposedly universally flattering color-adjusting shade, because foundation is so much more than just the shade itself.
You'll be looking for a different product if you have super dry skin or if you have super oily skin. You'll have different needs if you want "barely-there" coverage versus full coverage. Our suggestion? Find the foundation formulation that you love the most, then play around with it to create your perfect match — it may involve mixing two or three shades, but hey, isn't it worth it for flawless skin?