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Your Ultimate Guide to Making a Bad Foundation Work

Adjust its shade, coverage, and finish!
Your Ultimate Guide to Making a Bad Foundation Work
ILLUSTRATOR Gab Gutierrez
Adjust its shade, coverage, and finish!

Sometimes you have to buy the wrong foundation in order to finally find your perfect match—it's just how life works. But that doesn't mean you can't get your money's worth out of the bad foundations you've previously purchased. Keep reading and we'll teach you the tricks!

FIXING THE SHADE

1. Use shade adjusting products.

Our skin color doesn't stay the same all throughout the year, so having shade-adjusting products can be a lifesaver. Just add a few drops of the darker or lighter shade until you achieve your desired color, and voila—an instant match! They work for when you're doing makeup on other people, too.

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IMAGE The Body Shop

The Body Shop Shade Adjusting Drops, P1195, SM Megamall

2. Mix it with foundations you like.

Unless you sold your other failed purchases already, you can still use them up and get your money's worth by mixing them with the ones that you actually like. For example, if a foundation has great coverage but the shade is too orange, you can mix it with a lighter and more yellow-based shade to balance it out!

3. Set it with a lighter or darker powder.

A lighter or darker powder may typically be used for highlighting and contouring, but they can shade-correct your foundations as well. So instead of your regular setting powder, apply an even layer of the lighter or darker powder all over your face and neck. This technique is great for foundation that's only slightly a bit off, because it doesn't change the color dramatically and it's faster than mixing products.

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IMAGE BYS

BYS Compact Powder in Light and Dark, P249, Watsons

4. Change the undertone with a color correcting powder.

Similar to the previous tip, color correcting powders can adjust the tone of your foundation. You will usually find these in white, yellow, pink, and peach, and they're great at offsetting your bad habit of buying face makeup with the wrong undertone.

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IMAGE Ben Nye, Bobbi Brown

Bobbi Brown Retouching Powder in Pink, P3350, SM Megamall; Ben Nye Luxury Powder in Banana 0.93oz Dome Jar, P850, Digital Traincase

5. Blend it down your neck.

On days when you're in a real rush and just want to get out of the door, your foundation shouldn't stop you. But if you only have one that's a little too light or too dark, all you have to do is blend it down your neck and the color difference will be less noticable unless you're wearing something with a more revealing neckline.

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ADJUSTING COVERAGE

1. Add coverage by mixing with concealer.

Since concealers are more pigmented than foundations, they tend to have more coverage. So when you have a foundation that's too sheer for your liking, make a cocktail on the back of your hand and mix it with your favorite concealer to up the coverage.

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IMAGE MAC

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer, P1000+, SM The Block

2. Change your applicator.

What you use in applying your foundation makes a world of difference on its performance. Some foundations end up having less coverage when you apply them with damp sponges or your fingers, and usually give more coverage if you use a brush! Also, don't forget that coverage is typically better when you use a stippling motion instead of swiping product when applying your foundation.

Find your perfect foundation brush here!

ALTERING THE FINISH

1. If your foundation is too dewy, try the baking technique.

In case you haven't heard of it yet, baking your foundation with a loose powder is the oily-skinned girl's dream come true. It mattifies your foundation instantly and improves the longevity of face makeup because the powder absorbs excess moisture and sets everything in place. (FYI, it's a technique that makeup artists borrowed from drag queens!)

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IMAGE Tina Yong

2. If it's too matte, add some facial oil or moisturizer.

This is pretty self-explanatory, but mixing facial oils like argan, jojoba, and tsubaki oil will make a matte foundation glow. The same goes for moisturizer which will sheer out the product and lessen how tight it feels on the skin.

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IMAGE Sephora

Pixi Rose Oil Blend, P1502, Sephora.ph

3. Check your skin care for anything that clashes with the foundation's formula.

Your foundation isn't always the culprit for the overly matte or dewy look that you get. Sometimes, it's the skin care products you applied underneath it that's making everything look wrong. Besides, you shouldn't expect a highly water-based foundation to mix well with an oil moisturizer, right?

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