fifty shades of foundation.

by Zoey Rafiq

One of the most annoying and frustrating challenges that we women have to face in life is finding the right make-up. I’m sure that we’ve all been through that particular phase of our lives where we would choose a random foundation colour and slap it on, not realising the unblended foundation line on our jaw-line. And, let’s be honest, having a white neck with an orange face, or vice-versa, never has been, or never will be deemed attractive.

Experimenting with different looks is all a part of our beauty journey. We all start off looking like hideous, caked, ugly ducklings and over time evolve ourselves into beautiful swans. The hardest part of being able to accomplish this is always choosing the colours that look best on you. This is especially a problem that we all tend to have with foundation.

The most important place to start with determining your colour is, by first categorising your skin tone. If you have white/pale skin, then your skin tone has a pink base and you should consider yourself lucky! Most high-street stores such as Boots and Superdrug stock a majority of pink based foundations, and from what I have seen it has never been much of a struggle trying to find the perfect foundation to match your skin colour.


However if you are a woman of more colour, such as olive, Asian or black skin, it is more of a battle to find the right colour. From my experience, I have tried the majority foundation brands which can be found on the high street, from Rimmel to L’Oreal to Revlon, and my skin has been the victim of awful colouring from each of these brands.

When it comes to Asian skin like mine, we have to recognise the warm undertones that our skin naturally has. This means that we need to be hunting for a yellow based foundation – and these are quite hard to come by! But not to worry, I have my own list of perfect yellow toned foundations, so you don’t have to go experimenting and buying wrong colour foundations which you wish you could return.

After you’ve determined that you have a warm skin tone, it’s time to decide whether you’re looking for a sheer or thicker looking finish. In easier terms, do you want a simple and natural look or a flawless and heavier look? I personally think that foundation is used as a base to cover your imperfections and blemishes, so I prefer a medium to heavy coverage.

One of the best liquid foundations that can be found in either Boots or Superdrugs, is Maybelline’s Fit Me Foundation. This has by far been Maybelline’s best foundation. It is an easy buildable foundation, meaning that the more you apply the heavier the finish can be, without looking cakey. Most importantly, Maybelline has released a number of shades, to match your skin tone along with a helpful shade chart. So for lighter skin with cool tones you would use a 100’s number, a medium skin tone would be 200’s and a darker skin tone, 300’s.

An easier, but more expensive alternative to finding your own shade is going to a department store and getting your shade tested by a beauty expert. Stores such as Debenhams, John Lewis and Selfridges all offer this. I have been to Selfridges to get my foundation shade tested, and went to the NARS counter. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the NARS make up company, it is famously associated with being the best high-end brand which deals with women’s make-up for different ethnicities. After asking for a make-up consultation, I was pointed into the right direction of finding my perfect foundation shade, and I have been using my NARS Sheer Glow Foundation ever since.

It is important to realise that no matter what skin tone you are, every person’s skin colour and shade is different and the best way to find out which suits you is simply by testing out different types of foundations and seeing which colour suits you the most.  Just below here, I have compiled a list of the best yellow toned foundations that you may want to check out if, like me, you struggle to find the right make-up for your darker skin!

Maybelline Fit Me Foundation- Liquid- £7.99

Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation- Liquid- £9.99

NARS Sheer Glow Foundation- Liquid- £30.50

MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation- Cream- £25.00

Nars Radiant Cream Compact Foundation- Cream- £28.00

Mehron Celebre HD Pro Foundation- Cream- £6.50-£12.00 (online exclusive, has to be shipped to UK)



Cora Magazine are working in conjunction with Green People Organic Skincare to promote the benefits of organic beauty products. To celebrate, we are giving away THREE sets of Green People’s Skin Essentials package. To enter, click here.

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