Beauty columnist Kerry Harvey has the basic tips to find your perfect base.

Over the years I’ve spoken with many women who’ve had a foundation recommended that sadly was too dark/light and now they’ve a bathroom cabinet full of gorgeous foundations that simply don’t match their skin tone!

Hands up whoever had this experience! Before my training as a makeup artist, I for one had fallen victim to this too.

If this is you, then here’s my top inside info with some ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ to help you choose your perfect shade!

Let’s begin with the ‘Don’ts’

♥Don’t – Test on your hands or arms!

Many people will test the colour of a new foundation on the back of their hand, inside of their wrist or on their arm. This skin here is an entirely different shade to your face and neck so often you’ll find you’ll have picked up a colour that is far too dark for your upper body ie. neck and face, especially if you have tan or the residue of lots of tan on your arms.

♥ Don’t – Match to your neck or jawline!

Most beauty counter retailers will match your foundation to your jawline. This is perfect if your neck and décolletage (breast bone/chest/shoulder area) are all the same colour. But what if your neck is paler?

Bear in mind our heads over-hang our necks, so inevitably our necks don’t see as much natural daylight and will be paler. Matching a shade to your jaw/neck in this instance means you’ll have a paler shade of foundation when the rest of your body is darker in tone.

♥Don’t – Retail Lighting!

Store lighting can also affect how a colour looks… Bear in mind, retail lighting is often yellow in tone so as to soften and make everything look as beautiful as possible hence you’ll make a purchase quicker!


♥ Do – Test Shades on the darkest part of your neck/collar bone/chest area….

Simply take the shades that look the nearest in colour to this area, and apply a line of foundation here and let it dry. Pop a few shades beside each other and the shade that is the least obvious ie. tones into the area almost flawlessly, is your perfect match.

♥ Let it Dry!

Leave the foundation shades you’ve sampled on your collar bone to dry. Some foundations become darker as the oxygen mixes through them and dry out with the heat of your skin. A foundation that may initially have matched, may now in fact be darker…this is not your perfect match!


♥ Natural Light!

Once dry, simply go outside and in natural light see which foundation now truly matches. The shade that sinks into your skin tone almost flawlessly is now your perfect match! The centre shade in the image can no longer be seen on my skin, so that’s my perfect match!

♥Top Tip♥

Keep 2 foundations – one you’ve matched when you’re at your lightest skin colour eg in winter, and one you use when you’re tanned (false or real) and simply mix for the shades you maybe in between times throughout the rest of the year!

image-7For more in-depth information, on prepping the skin for flawless foundation application and to see a colour match test LIVE, check out my vlog on Fabulous Foundation Application Pt 1 —>>>

For a daily dose of all things girls and beauty, then follow me on Snapchat (kharveydesigns) or check our Kerry Harvey Designs on Facebook.  For any beauty related queries, feel free to contact me via K x