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Acne: 3 Tips You Haven’t Tried

Some of us who suffer from acne can easily feel defeated.  Sometimes we try and try and feel that nothing is working…but today I want to offer 3 tips that you hopefully haven’t tried.  They are tips that help to conceal and diminish the appearance of your tiny friends and will make you feel more self-confident when stepping out the door.

 


 

1.) STOP TRYING TO ATTACK YOUR ACNE.

 

 

Ever so often I will come across clients who are just being too hard on their skin.  They’re frustrated with their complexion so they scrub and scrub or apply topical treatment like crazy.  Here’s the thing, less is more and skin is smarter than we think.  If you start to incorporate a few gentle, soothing products into your lineup your skin will notice a huge change.  Sometimes acne is as red as it is because we are irritating it so much!  Once you start using products to cool and calm the skin your redness will go down and so will your dislike for your skin.  This tip includes not using a strong acne cleanser every time you cleanse, not cleansing/scrubbing your face more than twice a day, and not using strong topical acne medications that burn your skin.  Give your skin a break and it will reward you.

Quick tip: look for products that contain soothing ingredients like aloe, green tea and chamomile to calm the skin.  It is best to look for these ingredients in products such as cleansers and serums.

 

2.) THINK OUTSIDE THE CIRCLE BOX.

 

 

Here’s the thing – if acne didn’t cause such discoloration we probably wouldn’t notice it so much, right?  But every time we get a new “friend” the redness and swelling (not to mention scarring caused from picking) is one of the hardest things to conceal.  This is where we bring in our special teams enforcement.  This is where the sunless tanner comes in!  The sunless tanner will do a fantastic job of covering redness and dark spots and also allows you to use less foundation/concealer in the morning, allowing your skin to breathe.  Some women like the look of their skin after applying sunless tanner, so much so that they don’t even need or want to wear foundation, and that’s perfectly ok!  If you give your skin a break from pore clogging makeup products, you might also find your culprit!

Quick tip: make sure the sunless tanner you purchase is specifically made for the face.  Our favorite brand is the St. Tropez sunless tanner and some women are ok to use the body tanners on their face but it’s all individual.  Test is out before any important events to see how your skin does with it.

 

3.) GET ICE-Y WITH IT.

 

 

Saving the best for last – this is a tip that is easy, accessible, and free!  It’s very simple, and all it takes is two medium to large sized ice cubes.  You will hold them in your hands and massage your face in the morning with them until your ice runs out or until you’re done holding cold ice cubes.  By using the ice we are reducing swelling, redness and even pain.  This is no different than icing a swollen ankle and it works well because you can do this day and night and it’s extremely gentle on the skin.  This is also a great tip for pregnant women who can’t use harsh acne products!  The best part is that the ice also tightens and closes pores, and who doesn’t want that?

Quick tip: if the ice feels so strong for you in the morning, throw a metal spoon into your freezer at night and use that the next morning instead.  The spoon is easy to hold and allows you to hold it on an acne mark while you use your other free hand to brush your teeth or apply eye makeup, etc.


 

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Ooh, Baby Baby!

I know you all might think I’m losing my mind but today’s post is dedicated entirely to baby wipes…

Laugh if you will but these little superstars do wonders for those of us in the makeup world (and extends easily beyond that, but that’s a whole other post.)  More specifically, I want to talk about the baby wipes that are sold by the Target “Up & Up” generic brand.  I don’t know what it is about these little cloths but they last an eternity and they feel like cashmere.  They are very thick and it makes their durability last forever.  So much so that it makes me never want to throw it away when I’m using it because it has Energizer bunny powers.  I once had a mom tell me, “I could clean my whole house with one of those wipes!”

Let us celebrate all the ways we can appreciate these amazing wipes (in the name of beauty):

 

  • Use a wipe to clean your makeup products, drape the wipe around your finger and use it to clean the edges of eyeshadow, compacts and lipstick tubes
  • Spray a wipe with alcohol and use it to sanitize your lip and eye pencils
  • Use the wipe to clean the inside & outside of your makeup bag
  • Add a drop of your regular eye makeup remover to the cloth and use it to gently remove eye makeup.  This lasts infinitely longer than toilet paper and it’s easier to store than paper towels in your bathroom
  • Use the wipe to remove super stubborn eye makeup by wrapping it over your pinkie or a Q-tip for hard to reach areas
  • Use it to clean your lash curler (genius!) It also de-gunks lip brushes like a charm
  • Use it to wipe the eyeshadow fallout from doing your eye makeup, you won’t believe how much actually falls down
  • Use it to wipe of your lips after you’ve applied foundation, again, you won’t believe how much actually transfers over.

 

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Your Best Wedding Day Makeup Ever

Photo by Ink Studios, LLC.

We’ve all read those timelines a million times, how and what to get done before our big day…But today’s list is going to be a little bit different in that we’re going to cover some ideas that you probably haven’t thought about.  These are points that I always discuss with my bride and they always seem to be in agreement.


1.) This is the most expensive day of your life and you need to look like it.

Am I recommending that you hire the most expensive vendors and max out your card buying the most expensive things you can find? No. But I am suggesting that you look like it with your hair and makeup.  For most people their wedding gown will be the most expensive garment they will ever purchase, so in that case in doesn’t make sense to apply tinted chapstick to complete the look.  Follow the advice of your hair and makeup team and decide on a look that pulls everything together.  A classic chignon or a full-volume blowout always looks like a million bucks and won’t break the bank.  And don’t be afraid to go heavier on the makeup and trust the pros when we add more than you would on a normal workday.  Pretty jewelry is always my favorite accessory on a bride too.  I wore my jewelry as soon as I could on my wedding day because I felt so amazing in it!

Photo by Jana Marie Photos

 

2.) Lip products are what make the look.

On the day of your wedding you’ll want to be sure that you have your back-up lip products near you or on you at all times.  You can buy a beautiful clutch to keep it in and hold, or you can give it to your Maid-of-Honor.  Lips are important because they always complete the look and it keeps you looking fresh in photos.  After your makeup fades towards the end of the night your lipstick/lip gloss will keep you looking polished and beautiful.  And 9 times out of 10 if people see photos of the reception of you and your lipstick on they’ll assume everything else has stayed on perfectly well.

Clutch by Clara Kasavina

 

3.) Invest in your skin, get chemical with it.

I know this sounds obvious but it is so often overlooked.  If there’s ever a time to invest in your skin it is this period of your life.  Regular facials and a chemical peel here or there will do wonders for your skin (and your self-esteem.)  Here’s the kicker – you have to start as soon as you get engaged.  Most couples are engaged for a year.  This gives plenty of time to not only establish a consistent routine but also allows time if you happen to have a bad reaction with a product or treatment.  For the record, I have yet to have a bride ever do so. Setting up a peel schedule truly gives skin amazing results and it will yield a beautiful texture on your skin like nothing else.  The smoother your skin looks the better your foundation lays and stays on!  Perfect for close-ups such as this…

Photo by Jordan Alexandra Photography

 

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WINTER SKINCARE HACKS

Winter has hit and we are making up for lost time with the warm fall season that we had.  Today I’m sharing tips that will help keep your skin soft and hydrated.  What’s most important is that you stay consistent with these steps.  Consistency will make the biggest difference and it’s what your skin needs during the constant stress of the cold.

1.) SWITCH TO A CREAM OR OIL BASED CLEANSER.

This is more important to do if you are already normal or dry skinned.  If you’re prone to excess oil you don’t have to include this step, but for those who feel tight and dry after using their face wash, it’s vital to switch to something creamier.  It’s also helpful to cleanse and moisturize morning and night so that you can wash away excess impurities but to also use that second time to moisturize.  See my recommendations here and here.

 

2.) USE A BODY LOTION THAT CONTAINS AN EXFOLIATOR

Friends, I don’t know why all lotions do not contain an exfoliator within themselves.  Pure genius I tell you.  This one that I recently bought contains malic acid which helps to slough off flaky, ashy skin.  If I could exfoliate every hour of the day then I would…this is the next best thing.  This link that I’ve included gives you a selection of all their yummy scents as well!

3.) ADD AN OIL TO EVERYTHING

Whether you’re applying moisturizer to your face or your body, it’s always best to incorporate an oil into it during the wintertime.  This makes a huge difference in how your skin feels.  If you’re applying it to your face, put it on very last after your moisturizer.  For larger areas like your body, put several drops into your lotion and massage it in.  I also love to nuke the lotion & oil in the microwave for a few seconds before I put it on, so comforting!

For face oil recommendations click here and here.  For body oil recommendations, click here.

4.) GET MASKY WITH IT

Incorporating a weekly mask into your skincare routine will do wonders for your skin.  There is no magic number here but I would advise using a hydrating mask like this 2-3 times a week, depending on how dry you feel.  If you’re too tired to rinse if off before you fall asleep, just cleanse your skin the morning after like you normally would.

Click here to purchase this one or here to purchase this one.

 


And there you have it!  Four simple steps to keep your skin in prime condition for the holidays. Comment below if you have any rituals or products that you swear by for these cold winter months.  Now on to more important things, like gift wrapping and hot cocoa…

To read up on how to get cashmere hands for winter, click here…

 

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2016 BLUSH HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE

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IT’S HERE!!!

Today we cover some AMAZING gift ideas at unbeatable prices. I would consider this a gift that I have, finding these deals and steals. Originally I had planned not to include anything outside of makeup but then I realized that as a mother/daughter/sister/friend, we ALL need ideas for gift giving!

I shall step up to the plate and offer my sacrifice…

Here we go!

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1.) Brushed Metal Cake Stand, H&M $17.99

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A few ideas with this one: it makes a great hostess gift (especially if you add yummy treats on top), it can hold a small vase of flowers along with making a great table setting, it’s great to keep next your sink to hold your soap bottles…

I also love the idea of this as a gift for a mom (from siblings) with a few new perfume bottles on top & and don’t forget a pretty bow!

2.) Clarisonic (Mia 1) $109 with Coupon Code

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I cannot say enough great things about my Clarisonic face brush. Hands down nothing compares to how well it cleans your face and how soft it makes your skin feel. I was able to find an amazing discount code from Clarisonic’s website. Just enter the code “SHOPANDSAVE” at your checkout and receive $20 off! That beats any other online deal!

3.) Sonia Kashuk Lipliners $7.99 at Target

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I’ve blogged about these liners before and also here, and the fact that they are only $8 each (and carry an amazing color selection) means that you should have at least 2 or 3 on hand. Also great for stocking stuffers and girlfriends! The SK liners are also a great option for your wedding day!

4.) Honest Beauty Creme Blush $22

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Between this and the Tarte BB Tinted Primer I recently blogged about, I would say these are the top 2 best makeup products I’ve EVER used. The finish that this creme blush gives is second to none. It’s the best way to keep your skin looking hydrated in the winter months and it gives a beatuiful glow in the summer months as well. I love this color shown above “Truly Thrilling” for this winter season as well as the “Truly Exciting” shade.

5.) “All Nighter” ColourPop Eyeshadow Foursome $18

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Can we just take a moment for the simple fact that a regular-sized Urban Decay single eyeshadow retails for $18 at Sephora? And this ENTIRE SET is $18!! Ahh!! These colors are gorge-us and they have pigment like nobody’s business. My favorite way to wear these are wet and while doing so they take on a 2D effect. These shadows look best on the lid with a matte shade in the crease and they also work great as a bottom eyeliner. Best part? They’re all neutral and you can combine them with any other shades you already have at home!

6.) “The Good Times” Ultra Matte Lip Kit by ColourPop $18

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Quite honestly I don’t get it. I don’t understand how ColourPop puts out amazing products at such low prices. FIVE lipsticks for $18? Is it because they know we’ll be buyers for life and never buy another brand again?

I picked this set because you get a good variety of everything, a merlot, a poppy red, a dusty rose, a cool toned pink and a flattering nude. And I think any of these shades would pair perfectly with the eyeshadows and blush above!

I also love how CP always includes 3 different shaded skin tone swatches next to their products. This helps show how the color will “fall” on our own skin tones…

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7.) Penn Light 1 Globe Mini Pendant $79.20

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Obsessed doesn’t even begin to cover it with lights like these. I could probably put one of these guys in every single room in my house and it would just “work.”

I love it for a little boy or girl’s room and I also love it for kitchen lighting. It would look adorable with 2 or 3 in a row above an island or above your kitchen sink! See also: bathrooms.

8.) Viv + Rae Lily Cloudy Rug, $85 and up

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Ok so I just love this rug for a playroom. To me it embodies the magic of kids and it helps entice daydreaming. And you’ll be happy to hear it also comes in pink for us girlie girls!

9.) Star-Patterened Throw $24.99, H&M

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A few ideas for this blankie: it makes a great newborn gift (who says you can’t pre-buy?), it would look adorable hanging over a bench in the mudroom or, you can include it in the Christmas Eve pajama present for your kids along with a good book or movie to use it with.

10.) Pottery Barn Silver German Glitter Letter Ornaments, $2

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Man-oh-man are these a great gift idea! PERFECT for teachers or that someone who is hard to buy for. They look great on the tree and they also look magical hanging over your mantle. You can also use them to spell out a special word if you wish. Here is another initial ornament that’s similar as well…

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11.) “Bambi” Choker $33.50 @ Nordstrom

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If we’re going 90’s style it better be in solid gold. Case in point, this metallic choker. It’s neutral, it goes with everything and it’s a more stylish version of the ones you’ve already seen.

12.) H&M V-Neck Camisole Top, $12.99

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I think I need about 12 of these, for $13 bucks are you kidding me?? I love it for work (you better believe I’ll be sporting this in the facial room) and I love it for play of course. It’s great for date night and the shine makes it holiday appropriate…which brings me to gift #13.

13.) Leith Floppy Felt Hat, $12.98 (50% off) @ Nordstrom’s

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I got this hat for my birthday and have no fear, it’s as fabulous as it looks. At first I didn’t realize how stylish I would feel until I actually put it on and realized that I needed a better coat to accentuate it. Don’t you worry, I pulled through and found the CUTEST coats for it…

14.) Free People Midnight Bomber Jacket, $54.60

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At first I thought, “that gray hat has to be worn with a trenchcoat.” And then I nixed that idea because it was too predictable, I needed something a little more modern than that. I was lucky enough to stumble upon this bomber jacket and the fact that it comes in 3 colors!

I love all the colors but I think the red paired with the gray hat is very “Christmasy” but in a good way. Red is so festive and the gray hat keeps it toned down.

15.) H&M Mauve Faux Fur Jacket, $49.90

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I have to admit, I also love the idea of wearing that gray hat with this adorable dusted rose faux fur jacket. This would look so, SO cute with the previous metallic v-neck cami and gold choker! I’m daydreaming about it now…#addtocart.

16.) ASOS Chiffon Satin Pajama Set, $28

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Last but not least…

Listen, when I turned 30 (yesterday, literally) one of the first thoughts that honestly came to mind was how I needed a few pairs of nice satin pajamas and let me tell you why:

Nice pajamas make you feel extravagant, they are cozy, they help create a beautiful 24/7 wardrobe, they look beautiful no matter where they reside – in a closet or on a hanger, they hold value in that you strive for quality in all areas of your life.

How many of you watch a good movie with someone beautiful like Michelle Pfeiffer in it, and do you notice what she wears to bed? Sorry but it’s not your 2007 Turkey Trot 5K t-shirt. It’s often something in silk or chiffon and it assists in creating a relaxed and serene atmosphere before you fall asleep. These soft colors and silky fabrics help relax your mind and promote your way to more rejuvenating rest…and what’s better than rejuvenating rest?

All these gifts.

Just kidding.

Happy Shopping…


I hope you enjoyed this 2016 gift guide and comment below on what you plan to purchase for yourself or loved ones!

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HOLIDAY CHEMICAL PEEL SPECIAL

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Winter weather has hit and we need to start giving our skin the TLC it needs!

Did you know that 70% of your overall skin health is comprised of your at-home routine?  70% of what you do at home determines how healthy your face looks.  The other 30% spent in the treatment room is important for two main reasons.  One, it determines how well our skin absorbs product and two, it also allows a custom treatment best suited for our skin’s current needs.

The holiday peel special at Blush is perfect for the winter months because:

  • The fruit enzymes in the peel eat away at dry, flaky skin.
  • It’s safe for any and everyone to use, including pregnant women.
  • Great for acne.
  • It dries out oily areas where it needs to.
  • It resurfaces and smooths out your skin texture, reducing pore size and revealing a more flawless complexion with makeup on or off.
  • It brightens and it tightens.
  • It aids better absorption of at-home products, making the $ you spent on them more effective.
  • It softens, allowing the skin to feel more soothed and hydrated.

To book your appointment, call or text 785.393.9991

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Once Upon A Lip Balm…

lipbalm

Every girl dreams of finding her one true love…

You all know what I’m talking about…

Not Prince Charming…

Lip Balm.

Today I want to share an amazing balm for keeping your lips soft but also recommending a DIY lip exfoliator because you can’t have one without the, oooother.  (Please tell me you get that reference.)

First, you have to exfoliate.  Everyone has their own routine but I would suggest exfoliating 2-3 times a week.  Keep it in your shower or next to your toothbrush.  It is important to remove the dry flakiness as much as possible for your lip balm to penetrate.  No need to get fancy with it, you can just use a homemade mixture of brown sugar, honey and olive oil.  Use a very minimal amount of the liquid to keep the paste more granular.  Buffing this on and around your mouth will do more for your lips than you realize.  Originally I wanted to include a link to an “all-natural” lip scrub but I couldn’t find one that was completely chemical free.  Let me be honest, you don’t want your lip scrubs to have chemicals such as glycol, alcohols, or polymers.  My eyes got as big as Lawanda’s from Problem Child 2 when I realized that polymers are a derivative of PLASTIC.  This will do nothing to help your lips, it will in fact dry them out even more.

Next comes Prince Charming…the love of my life and what keeps my lips protected from dry cold wind.  I’ve been applying it every day as much as possible (1-3x a day and at night) and noticing a real difference.  The balm is called Dr. Dan’s CortiBalm and it actually contains 1% Hydrocortisone. This is the magical ingredient that keeps your lips protected and creates a barrier between wind and extreme cold/hot air while helping heal inflammation.  Their website even contains a comparative chart against leading other brands and reveals their minimal ingredient list, a must for people who are conscious of what they put into their body!

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The lip balm was originally designed for patients suffering from extremely dry lips due to chemical peels, acne treatments like Accutane and other medications.  The hydrocortisone also helps reduce inflammation caused from cold sores – something I have yet to find for cold sore sufferers.  Prescription strength? Yes please!

Comment below and tell us your current favorite lip balm!

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The Best Product I’ve Ever Used

whats-the-best-product-ive-ever-used

Y’all.  Today’s post is huge.  Today I’m sharing the BEST product I’ve ever used in my entire life!!!

There’s a lot riding on this post so I hope that each and everyone of you who purchase this recommendation fall as madly in love with it as I do.

And if you don’t fall in love with it, tell me what works better than this because I have yet to find it.

Ladies and gentlemen I present to you…

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The Tarte Cosmetics BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer!  

This primer is everything and more I’ve ever wanted in a product.

It’s a primer but I SWEAR you can wear it as a foundation, it has SPF but it works PHENOMENALLY well as a primer, it has SPF but it still covers like a FOUNDATION…do you get where I’m going with this?

Most primers you could never wear solely on their own but this one knocks it out of the park for coverage, I swear it covers better than most regular foundations that I’ve tried.  Also add the fact that it smoothes out skin texture incredibly well.  This is your primer if you’re wanting to reduce pore size!  I also love that it has a high SPF but that you can’t smell or feel it at all.  That is like the equivalent of calorie-free cheesecake.

This primer can be worn alone or with your regular foundation lineup and it will give you the most flawless complexion you’ve ever had in your entire life.  Yes, I said it.  If you disagree comment below and tell me what’s better because there is nothing.  The Sephora Gods have deemed this primer most fit for everyone in all of the land.

And the absolute best part?

It. Lasts. All. Day.

#MicDrop #Run #NotGettingADimeForThisPost #JustWantToShareTheLove

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Glamour Itinerary

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Today we are covering the necessities for skincare perfection, the glamour itinerary that you need to keep you looking your best year-round.

If this chart sounds a little labor heavy to you realize that most of these tips take very little time to actually do, seconds really.  You can keep alcohol wipes in your desk at work and clean your phone as soon as you sit down for the day.  If your budget doesn’t allow for a monthly facial treatment, make it quarterly.  Also, schedule your skincare checkup every year on your birthday that way you know you are continually booking that on an annual basis.

This chart can easily be adjusted to fit your individual needs, the main point is that you stay consistent with your skincare routines.  Consistency is the key to any and all success!


Click here to read up on how to properly clean your brushes and find out my favorite brush spray cleaner! 

 

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Finding Your Perfect Foundation

Current Faves (2)

Just this week, an old friend from high school sent me a message and asked me for a foundation recommendation.  She had a list of requirements and she told me that what she had tried in the past wasn’t working well.  It inspired me to write this post because I have SO many tips and tricks for finding the right foundation, no matter what your list requires!

I’m going to break it down for you in simple steps and I’m also going to list a few of my all-time favorites for people who just want a general recommendation.

1.) Decide if you want a light, medium or full coverage formula.  

Light coverage will still show freckles and skin discoloration, medium is a good in-between if you want some coverage but don’t want a heavy finish, and full coverage gives a very opaque coverage.  Think Adele.

Also, do you want a dewy (glowy) finish or a matte (no shine) finish?

Dewy on the left, skin has an overall glow.  Matte on the right, skin almost appears to be powdered.  BlakeSM

2.) Decide if you want a powder, liquid or cream.

As mentioned from tip #1, these 3 textures will often yield the above results.  Powder is light coverage, liquid is medium, and cream is full.  For the record, I will 9.5/10 always recommend a liquid finish.  It’s the most blendable and very few people over the age of 17 can pull off powder (skin has to be nearly perfect for it to sit well by itself on the skin.)  If you have acne or other skin texture issues powder never has and never will look good on top it.

3.) Go to Sephora and find someone to help you.  

This tip will save you 38293 million different ways.  I know some people hate spending $ on “expensive makeup” but you will spend just as much when you buy 2-3 wrong shade foundations at Target or Walgreens.  Tell a Sephora team member that your looking for a new foundation and that you need XYZ from tips #1&2.  And don’t be afraid to be honest with them. Tell them what you’ve tried in the past and why it didn’t work.

4.) Ask for an application of the foundation.

This is why I love Sephora, they will walk you through everything step-by-step.  They will color match you for the right foundation shade, show you what primer and what brush to use and they will apply it in store so that you can see how it looks and feels. This is huge guys, this takes out sooo much of your guessing work.

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5.) Decide if you’re ready to purchase or ask for a sample.

If you feel unsure of how well you like the new foundation, ever-so-politely ask for a sample of it.  This will really give you a good idea of how well it stays and pushes you closer to a yes or a no.  But also keep in mind that if you don’t have the brush and primer that they originally used on you, the end-result could be much different.

Following the above steps should help you decipher not only what you need but how you want your makeup to look.  When you feel confident about yourself, it’s makes you feel more presentable to the world.  Polished and professional – that’s my kinda gal! 😉 

Top Picks For Foundation: