How to Get a Smooth, Flawless Base

Everyone’s heard it a time or two, your makeup will look its best if you have a good base! And by that, I mean picking the correct products, from skincare to makeup, to work with your skin.

A flawless base doesn’t necessarily mean your skin looks like a doll’s or like you’ve been using Facetune. It can simply mean enhancing the features you like and toning down the features you don’t like. Perfect skin is an illusion, there will always be things you don’t like about your skin. It’s important to find the things that you do like!

Start With Skincare

The most important aspect of a smooth, flawless base for your skin is figuring out a skincare routine that works for you.

The first step is establishing your skin type: oily, dry, combo, or normal. Certain products are designed to work better with those skin types, keeping you from being too oily or too dry, and not causing breakouts. From there, figure out what your skin concerns are. These are things such as dark circles/bags under eyes, wrinkles/fine lines, acne, rosacea, simple redness, dry patches, sensitive skin, etc.

Once you’ve established what you need with your routine, begin finding things that can work with your skin type. A visit to an esthetician is a great place to start, but sometimes it’s not realistic financially.

While you can’t rely entirely on reviews or recommendations, they can be a great place to start if you need help. Just make sure that the reviewers have your skin type/issues! Youtube is also a great resource. Looking for influencers who have your skin type can help you figure out who can help you find the best products.

Ultimately, do your research and try out products. Don’t worry if it doesn’t work for you. Your skin is unique to you and what works for one person may not work well for you.

Once you start taking regular care of your skin, some of the things that bother you may start to clear up on their own! This will make the makeup half of the equation much easier, if you choose to wear makeup.

Make Sure Your Primer and Foundation Work Together

Your primer and foundation need to work well together, as well as with the skincare products you’re using. Skincare, primers, and foundations have a few different primary ingredients: water, oil, or silicones.

None of these three really work well together, and product will start separating or pilling if they don’t. If you’re noticing product breakdown and it doesn’t seem related to a high amount of oil in your skin, it could be that your primer, skincare, and/or foundation are incompatible with one another.

Make sure to check the ingredients. water is self explanatory, silicone products tend to have “-one” at the end of the name of some of the ingredients. For oils, it’s not always the same oil. A few options are mineral oils like paraffin oil or vegetable oils like palm oil and coconut oil.

A simple color wheel

Color Correcting

Color theory with contrasting colors can help you tone down dark circles, redness, and uneven yellow tones. The idea is that you use colors on the opposite side of the color wheel to balance your skin tone out.

Here are the most common color correctors used.

  • Redness/rosacea is evened out with green tinted primers or concealers
  • Yellow or sallow undertones are evened out with more lavender/purple shades
  • Blue tinged dark circles use orange correctors, though if you’re fair skinned, make sure it’s not too dark of an orange – peachy shades are best for fairer skin tones.
  • Purple tinged dark circles use more yellow based shades to cancel out the color.

A thin color corrector layer underneath foundation and/or concealer can make the product you need less full coverage and easier to work with. It’s a small thing that can make a huge difference!

Powdering and Baking

While powdering and baking can be really helpful, you have to make sure they work for your skin.

Baking is the process of taking large amounts of loose powder and letting it sit on your concealer. The powder dries down the concealer without the product collecting in any wrinkles or lines you may have on your face, and it brightens the overall area.

Personally, I’ve got normal/dry skin, and I can’t bake under my eyes without making them feel really really dry. On the other hand, some people (particularly those with very oily skin or lots of lines near their eyes) can’t get their makeup to stay if they don’t bake. It depends on you, but it’s worth trying to see how it works.

Powdering is just the process of setting your foundation and concealer with a thin layer of a loose or pressed powder. Some people just powder certain areas that get oily, such as the T-zone or perhaps under the eyes, others prefer to set their whole faces. Powder can lengthen the wear of the base products underneath them, and can make it easier to blend powder products like bronzer, blush, and highlighter over the foundation.

I prefer to use a loose or pressed powder across my whole face than really focus it anywhere. I use loose powders with fuller coverage foundations, pressed ones with lower coverage foundations since tinted pressed powders seem to give me more coverage. If you have particularly dry skin, either avoid powdering or use a moisturizing foundation underneath.

What are your favorite tips to get a smooth base for your makeup? Let me know in the comments!