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Finding your perfect foundation shade and formula can sometimes feel like searching for a four-leaf clover in an overgrown forest – impossible. 
But lucky for you, we know a thing or two about how to choose the best foundation shade and formula for your skin tone and type.   
Principal MUA Kate Squires shares her makeup wisdom on the simple steps to finding your perfect (makeup) match. 

How to choose the right foundation shade and formula

Find your undertone  

Establishing your undertone ensures you select a shade that’s the most flattering and the closest match to your natural skin colour.  

When finding your undertone, it’s important to do so in natural day light, preferably in front of a window to get the truest read of undertone. Using a handheld mirror, look at your neck and down your décolletage, chest and shoulders, as well as down your jaw line and neck. Besides admiring your fabulous features, you may be wondering exactly what it is you’re looking for.  

There are 3 main undertones: Pink, Yellow and Neutral.  

Pink - cool 

Yellow – warm / golden  

Neutral – a bit of both pink and yellow.

Another trick is to look at the veins in your arm. If they’re a blue-ish colour you’re most likely a pink undertone, if they’re green, you’re more likely to be a yellow/golden undertone. If you find you can’t tell the difference and they appear both blue and green, you’re most likely a neutral undertone.  

Find your depth of colour 

Your depth of colour is where you sit on the spectrum of light (medium or dark) and will ensure you don’t choose a shade that’s too light or too dark. So, how do you tell your depth of colour? 

Fair skin – doesn’t tan easily and is quite pale all year round 

Light – mostly pale, but can still get a slight tan  

Medium – tan most of the year round, but can build quite a dark tan when exposed to the sun 

Deep - Dark – consistent caramel /chocolate tone all year round 

Which formula?  

Establishing what type of formula is right for you comes down to two things; coverage and finish. Coverage refers to the amount of product you want to physically see on the skin and finish talks to whether you want your face to glow or remain matte throughout the day. 


Sheer – a light veil or tint – softly evens skin tone, but can still see freckles come through 

Light – more coverage than sheer, skin still looks fresh and natural whilst minimally covering blemishes and discoloration 

Medium – covers blemishes, discoloration and pigmentation without being overly made up  

Full – Maximum – Flawless finish, however more obvious you’re wearing makeup 


Dewy – fresh with a beautiful obvious sheen – great for dry / dehydrated skin 

Radiant – fresh with a subtle luminosity to lift and brighten the complexion - great for dry / dehydrated skin 

Demi-matte – will take most of the sheen out of the skin, however when the light hits the high points of the face, you’ll still see a natural sheen 

Matte – won’t give the skin any sheen or shine, helps to flatten out skin texture – great for oily skin  

What texture? 

What do you prefer wearing and applying? Liquid, cream or powder?  

  • Liquid – great when you don’t like the feeling of wearing a lot of product or texture on your skin. Also, great for when you don’t have a lot of time to get ready 
  • Cream – more of a balmy, waxy texture which boasts greater wear time and coverage 
  • Powder – great for oily skin types and those who like greater coverage and prefer a lighter feeling product on the skin 

 You’re now armed with the goods to choose your perfect foundation. Fast track to flawless and check out our range of foundations.