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A Comprehensive Guide To: Foundation

Foundation creates a flawless base and is essential in every makeup routine, whether you are trying to achieve an effortless and natural look for work on Monday morning, or going full-glam this Friday night. But with so many products brought to market, it can be difficult to find something that works – not only for your look, but also for your skin.

Types of Foundation, Coverage, & Finish

Foundation comes in cushions and compacts, liquids and powders, sticks and serums… the list goes on. They can provide sheer coverage or be built up to full coverage, and different types of foundation can leave your skin looking radiantly dewy, natural, or even matte. So the question remains; what does it all mean, and how do you find the right foundation for your skin?

Liquid Foundation

Liquid foundation is by far the most popular foundation product on the market. One of the primary benefits of that, is that more often than not, you will be able to find a perfect match to your skin tone. If finding the right colour or undertone is difficult, add the NYX Pro Foundation Mixer to any liquid foundation to create a custom shade that matches your skin seamlessly. Check out Melissa Anne’s channel for the full review of mixers by NYX!

Liquid products can be easily applied with a brush, beauty sponge, or even just your fingertips, and look like a second skin when blended. I love a good liquid foundation, but no matter if I use water-based formulas, or something oil-free, I still find these too heavy for day-to-day wear with my oily skin. Very occasionally on a night out, I will use a liquid product with a matte finish like the Maybelline Fit Me! Matte + Poreless Foundation.It blurs pores magnificently to create an even, full-coverage base that lasts the entire night. If you have dry or normal skin, liquid products may be better suited to you on a daily basis. They often contain additional moisture, and even ingredients like SPF to protect against sun damage. Try the Maybelline Fit Me! Hydrate + Smooth Foundation for a flawless, full-coverage look that hydrates and provides moisture to dry areas, and leaves you looking luminous! Watch as Jazzi Filipek (another oily skinned girlfriend), as she tries out both different Maybelline foundations and compares the results.

Cushion and Powder Foundation

If you’re looking for sheer to medium coverage – perhaps something to leave you feeling cute and confident for casual days at school, work, or when running errands – then you need to try a cushion or powder foundation. Cushion foundations were first popularized in Korean beauty routines, and are often infused with a variety of skincare benefits too. The cushion applicator evenly distributes foundation onto your beauty sponge, making it very buildable and virtually impossible to look cakey. Something like the Absolute HD Flawless Cushion Foundation, which contains 39 botanicals including tea tree oil, providing just enough coverage to eliminate discolouration and dark spots, and even your skintone.

Powder foundations are another option, perfect for light makeup days. If you are oily like me – or have sensitive and acne prone skin – you need a powder foundation compact in your life! Milani’s Prep Set Glow Powder smooth’s the skin, and is versatile in that it can provide sheer coverage, or be built-up to achieve a more full-coverage look. It has oil-absorbing properties, and is a great alternative to heavier liquid makeup, which often settle into fine lines, and clog pores overtime with daily use. Whether you opt for a cushion or powder, both are travel friendly, and can easily be tossed into your purse, making on-the-go touch-ups easy as pie!

Stick Foundations

Stick Foundations are another portable option, ideal when you are on the move. My favourite is the NYX Mineral Stick Foundation, because the lush formula is easily blendable, and the stick applicator makes it a multi-purpose tool, perfect for highlighting and contouring should you purchase more than one shade. Coverage can be as sheer or full as you choose, just layer the foundation to your taste! Waste is minimal (unlike powders which can break, and liquids which are often sucked up by brush or sponge), so stick foundations are a budget-friendly alternative that truly last. Check out Yamile Elizabeth’s channel to see the NYX stick in action!


Foundation is applied in one of three ways; with a brush, with a beauty sponge, or with your fingertips. Because bacteria are easily transferable from finger to face, I suggest playing it safe, and opting to use a brush or sponge. The Morphe Angled Buffer Brush is my personal favourite for liquid, cushion and stick foundations. The densely packed brush evenly disperses product across your face to create an airbrushed finish, and the slight angle reaches contours of the cheek, brows and nose with ease. Beauty sponges are great too, especially the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge. When dampened foundation will create a dewey effect, perfect for anyone with normal, combination or dry skin trying to look luminous. Sponges are also multi-purpose tools, great for applying powder to set heavier foundations, and the precision point of the sponge can gently dab blemishes to conceal them with ease. Sam of Real Techniques will show you how it’s done!

Now that you’ve read the full guide on choosing the right foundation, head over to to check out the foundation guide collection! With a purchase of any 3 items in this collection, you’ll receive a FREE NYX Pro Foundation Mixer! Use the code “FreeNYXFoundationMixer” at checkout.


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