An essential component in any woman's handbag, foundation make-up products have a long history of use. From the white face paint of Chinese Geishas to Elizabeth the First's white lead foundation make-up, to the penchant for powdered faces and decollage in the Restoration Period.
And why not? Foundation make-up products even out skin tone, and covers blemishes or imperfections to create the illusion of a flawless complextion. It also helps to disguise the signs of aging.
If you're looking to start using foundation, there's lots of things to consider. Because it's meant to look natural, it's vital that you get the right shade for your flesh tone. Too light and you'll look sickly, too dark and you'll look orangish, or end up with 'tide lines', which are when you can see the place where the foundation makeup stops and the regular skin begins. Another concern is whether you're buying a product that suits your skin type. If you have naturally oily skin, it's vital to pick a product that is water-based or geared to oily or acne-prone skin. If you've got an especially dry complextion, you might want to find a brand that has added moisturiser. If you spend a lot of time outdoors, you may want to find a product with sunscreen.
However, choosing the right product is only the beginning. Once you've got the right product, you have to learn to apply it properly. Believe it or not, it's not good enough to just smear it all over your face indescriminantly. You'll also want to find out about products to apply under your base, how to apply other make up over it, and how you can work with your base to make your makeup last.
It's a complex process, but once you learn, you'll always enjoy a flawless complextion!