A few weeks ago a friend of mine asked me about mineral makeup. She hadn’t tried it before and wanted to know whether it was easy to apply and how well it works. I used to be very sceptical of mineral makeup, because I have been devoted to liquid foundation for years, and I was doubtful that a powder formulation would provide smooth, even coverage for my skin. However, once I tried it, I was hooked. It took a bit of practice to get the hang of applying it, but now I’m a pro.
Mineral foundation is perfect for creating a natural, glowing complexion. It is a perfect solution for ladies who, like me, have oily skin, as the powder formulation does a good job at mopping up shine. It is excellent during summer, as it looks natural and lightweight, while still providing good coverage for blemishes and uneven skin tone. Mineral foundation is also great for people who have very sensitive or acne prone skin, as I find it is easier to wash off and is gentler on your skin. The condition of my skin has improved greatly since I began using mineral foundation regularly.
I don’t use mineral foundation exclusively simply because I find it isn’t suitable for all occasions. I use a liquid foundation when I want to create a more polished visage. I find that mineral foundation is a bit useless in wet weather, as it really doesn’t stand up to rain. Also, if I am working long hours or if I’m going to an event that will last all day, I usually go for liquid foundation, because it lasts longer. Mineral foundation isn’t a long-lasting makeup option, so it is better left to days when you know you will have plenty of opportunities for touch-ups.
It is very important to choose your mineral foundation carefully. As with any foundation, you need to match the shade to your skin tone exactly. Always buy foundation in the shade you are, not the shade you want to be. Go to a makeup counter and try the shade on your face, and then walk outside to check how the colour matches. The fluorescent lighting in shopping malls often distorts colours, so a shade that looked perfect in the shop might not be such a good match in natural light. I recall once going into a department store and being beautifully made up at the makeup counter, then walking around in the city for hours before I caught a glimpse of myself in a shop window and realised my face was a lovely shade of tangerine. Any foundation you choose should ‘disappear’ into your skin if it is the correct shade. It’s also very important to trial the shade on your face, rather than on your wrist or arm to ensure that you choose exactly the right one.
Mineral foundation must be applied with a brush. I use two brushes to apply. For a perfect finish, you will need a small, round-edged brush and a large, fluffy powder brush. I recommend investing in a really good set of makeup brushes, because you will use them all the time and if you buy cheap and nasty ones, they will fall apart within a year.
Here is my step by step guide to applying mineral foundation:
Cleanse and moisturize your face and apply sunscreen.
Take your small, round brush and dip it into the pot of mineral foundation. Tap off any excess product. Then, use the brush to cover any blemishes on your skin. Apply a tiny amount of foundation to the blemish itself and carefully blend around the edges. If you have blended properly, you won’t be able to tell where the foundation meets your skin.
Using your small brush, blend a small amount of foundation into the edges of your nose, where your nostrils meet your cheek. Many people suffer from redness in this area and the foundation will give your face a polished look. Blend carefully.
If you have dark circles under your eyes, use your small brush to blend a tiny bit of foundation into the inner corners of your eye, and then outwards underneath your eye. Don’t apply the foundation all the way along your eye. Make sure that you stop just below your iris. Because the mineral foundation is a powder, it is liable to settle into any fine lines you may have in the corners of your eyes. Even if you don’t have any lines, the powder can move when you laugh or smile and create the appearance of fine lines.
Take your large powder brush and dip it into the powder pot. Tap gently to remove any excess. Starting in the centre of your forehead, blend the product carefully outwards. Then take it down the bridge of your nose and across your cheeks. Finally, apply it to the centre of your chin, spreading outwards across your jawline. Always apply from the inside of your face, working outwards. Use the smallest amount of foundation you can manage to begin with. Rather than sweeping the product across your face, hold the brush close to the bristles and use a ‘buffing’ motion to push the product onto and across your skin. Imagine that you are polishing the foundation into your skin.
Look in the mirror and check that your foundation is well blended. There should be no dark areas. Also, check that the foundation is blended well down your jawline, so that you don’t have an obvious foundation line ending at your chin. If you would like more coverage, repeat step 5 again. The beauty of mineral foundation is that you can gradually build up the colour until you have achieved the amount of coverage that you need.
Apply the rest of your makeup and you are ready to go!