FAN MAIL FRIDAYS: Test foundation on makeup counters like a pro

Almost a month into being a wife and one thing I loved about it is my sleep has normalized. All that house chores plus work and Crossfit can drain your energy and by 11pm, I'm knocked out on the bed. I've been meaning to normalize my sleeping pattern and fix my sleeping habits, and being a wife was the answer! :D

So yeah, that's my musing for today. In today's FMF, Shirley asks if there are tricks on how to test foundation on makeup counters:

Hi Martha,
I just want to ask if there are right/wrong ways to test foundation on counters? Or are there tricks behind it? Problem is, I always end up with the wrong shade even if I spend a lot of time testing foundation before purchasing so I would like to know if there are optimal ways to do it. Would appreciate your reply.

Hey Shirley!

Good question. There are right and wrong ways to test a foundation, but I'd like to focus on the tricks more. Without further ado, here they are.


- If the makeup counter that I'm visiting is near an exit, I take the extra mile by taking a couple of shades that I think match my skin tone, go outdoors, and swatch them under natural light. Natural light brings our your skin's true color and undertone, which helps you find your closest, if not your right shade of foundation. A substitute is white light or a mix of white and orange lighting, but never purely yellow or orange light.


- This is a trick I learned from Felix Nguyen, makeup artist for Bobbi Brown. Swatching foundation on your forehead will match your face with your lower neck to chest, the parts that light hits the most and are more visible than your neck, next to your face. This technique will help you find a foundation that will unify your face and chest, which gives the illusion of an even skin tone.


- When it comes to finding the right formula, knowing your skin type is key. Are you oily- skinned? Go for long- wearing foundations in liquid, mousse, or powder form. Are you dry- skinned? Best to go for liquid and cream types. Also, is your skin heavily acidic? Go for a shade lighter. Alkaline? Go a shade darker.


- This will cut your search time in half. Skin undertones are as follow: yellow, pink, neutral, olive. Picking a shade with an undertone that doesn't match yours is one of the culprits behind bad foundation!


- This is a rule I apply when I buy foundation. I try the foundation on, go around the mall for 20 minutes, and afterwards, observe how the foundation looks, feels, and sets on my skin. This way, I'm sure that I'll love or like, at least, the foundation that I will purchase.

Hope this helps! Now go get that right foundation for you!

**Got a burning question on makeup, beauty, perfume, skin care, blogging, exercise, fitness, career, or anything under the sun? Message me via Contact Form, email me at martha.stabarbara@yahoo.com, or send me message on THE BEAUTY JUNKEE's Facebook fan page.

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19 Lovely Thoughts

  1. OMG! We have the same question or problem Shirley and thank you for asking Ms. Marths about it! I do have the same problem. And this content will help me so much finding the right shade of foundation. Will use this as a guidelines. 😚❤️

  2. Would do this on my free foundations hihi thank you Ms. Martha

  3. lahat tama! Tandaan lang lalo na tlga ako ung ginagawa ko is ngtetesting ako tlga sa tamang lightning, natural light, hindi sa ilaw ng bumbilya kundi sa ilaw ng umaga, sakto kasi at kitang kita ko saktong kulay ng balat ko.

  4. OHHHHH forehead swatches! I'll try this next time! :D

  5. I'm also having trouble with what is the right foundation for me. Thanks to this blog, this will be a big help for me finding the right foundation for me on my next purchase.

  6. Im acidic thats why i always look for a lighter shade😘 and the next time i tried testing out, will do it on my forehead, thanks for the tip! πŸ˜„πŸ‘

  7. This is so informative. I've been using liquid foundations for 3 years now. Despite using it for a long time now, I still can't find the "one". The right shade for me, that is. This helps a lot tbh. I didn't know doing a swatch on the forehead could do the trick. I've always just been swatching on the back of my hand or on my jaw/neck area. Artificial lighting plays a major role too. I now realize that we still do really have to comply with the 20 minute rule and go see the foundation under natural lighting. I'll definitely take note of this. Thanks, Ms. Martha!

  8. thank you fot this kind of blog very informative to us reader.. thumbs up πŸ‘

  9. I never tried number 5. Oo nga pala no, ba't di ko naisip yun noon? Haha. Minsan kasi yung nakukuha ko eh nag-ooxidize kaya medyo maitim na tuloy tingnan hanggang sa nadisappoint ako at di ko na ginamit. Gosh, I should've known this earlier. Hahaha. I'm so happy Ms. M. Gagawin ko na yang number 5 next time. ❤

  10. This is very helpful Ms M. Thanks to you!

  11. Ngayon ko lang nalaman na maganda palang mag swatch sa forehead! Finally! Thanks Miss Martha!

  12. Hindi pumasok yung comment ko kagabi lols! bgal kasi net. mahalaga talaga malaman ang tamang shade. mhirap tlga bumili pg hindi ikaw mismo mg swatch/test sa balat lalo na kapag sa online bumili madalas ma wrong shade.πŸ˜‰ buti medyo alam ko na skin undertone ko Neutral ako hehe! Nice post Ms. M! very helpful nito. 😊

  13. Thanks for sharing some tips and tricks ate martha! Super informative and helpful. Mas okay pala yung magsswatch ka ng foundation sa forehead para malaman kung anong shade ang dapat, ako kasi pag nagttry sa kamay lang kaya siguro mali din ang nabibili kong shade.

  14. The struggle is real! These are very helpful tips!

  15. And btw, I love your make up look here..

  16. Oh my gosh, very helpful tips Ms Martha! I see the importance for not being in a hurry when purchasing foundation. Thanks a bunch!

  17. I usually bring contact lens case with me and ask for a sample from the SA that way I don't waste money.

  18. Thanks for sharing this Ms. M! I only knew that foundations can be tested on forehead too and way better than testing on jawline. I haven't tried testing or wearing foundation for 20 mins. at the mall, to know if it suits my skin. Maybe I should try that next time, para wala regrets!


Thank you for your comments!