Applying Foundation: Tips for Self-Care After Vision Loss

By Maureen A. Duffy, M.S., CVRT

  • Like most makeup, foundation looks best when applied sparingly and with a light touch. Don't hesitate to ask for assistance or confirmation from a family member or friend.
  • Foundation is available in several types: liquid (including tinted moisturizer), cream, cream-to-powder, and stick. The formulation you select depends upon your skin type and the amount of coverage you desire.
  • Choose a foundation color that is as close as possible to your own skin color. If you're unsure about the correct shade, ask a family member, friend, or cosmetician for assistance.
  • You can also get professionally color-matched at a department store or by contacting a representative from a cosmetic company, such as Avon or Mary Kay.
  • In general, the foundation color should match your skin and disappear when blended well. It's best to avoid shades that are darker than your natural skin color.

Be sure to clean your hands and fingertips before going on to the next step to prevent makeup residue from rubbing off on your face, clothing, and upholstery.

Applying Liquid Foundation or Tinted Moisturizer

Liquid foundation or tinted moisturizer is suitable for a variety of skin types and is available in water-based (lighter coverage; for normal to oily skin) and oil-based (heavier coverage; for dry skin) formulations.

  • Shake the container well to mix the formula. Apply a dime-sized drop to your makeup sponge or pour it into the palm of your hand. Apply a dot on each cheek, the nose, the chin, and the forehead.
  • To blend, follow the same sequence as in applying moisturizer. Use both hands and be sure to avoid your eye area:
    • Upward and outward from chin to ears
    • Across and up from nose to temples
    • Upward from tip of nose to forehead
    • Circular motions on forehead to temples
    • Small circular motions around sides of nose
    • Circular motions on chin
    • Upward on throat
  • Blend carefully at your jaw line and throat, paying special attention to areas where foundation tends to collect, such as the hairline, the sides of the nose, the area in front of the ears, and the chin.
  • Wipe a tissue over your eyebrows and along your hairline and thoroughly clean both hands before continuing, because foundation can stain your clothing and upholstery.
  • Allow it to "set" for 5-10 minutes before continuing with your makeup routine.

Applying Cream Foundation

Cream foundation is suitable for a variety of skin types, but is most appropriate for dry skin. It offers heavier coverage than liquid foundation and is available in several formulations, including regular cream and cream-to-powder, also called dual-finish.

  • Applying cream foundation with a damp makeup sponge gives the most control. Stroke the sponge 1-2 times across the surface of the cream or the cream-to-powder compact. Use a light touch, because a little goes a long way.
  • Touch the sponge once on each cheek, the nose, the chin, and the forehead.
  • To blend, follow the same sequence as in applying moisturizer. Use both hands (instead of the sponge) and be sure to avoid your eye area:
    • Upward and outward from chin to ears
    • Across and up from nose to temples
    • Upward from tip of nose to forehead
    • Circular motions on forehead to temples
    • Small circular motions around sides of nose
    • Circular motions on chin
    • Upward on throat
  • Blend carefully at your jaw line and throat, paying special attention to areas where foundation tends to collect, such as the hairline, the sides of the nose, the area in front of the ears, and the chin.
  • Wipe a tissue over your eyebrows and along your hairline and thoroughly clean both hands before continuing, because foundation can stain your clothing and upholstery.
  • Allow your foundation to "set" for 5-10 minutes before continuing with your makeup routine.

Applying Stick Foundation

Stick foundation provides full coverage, a matte finish, and is best suited for oily skin. It also provides good coverage for blemishes, discolorations, and scars. Here is how to apply it:

  • Roll up or twist up the foundation tube and check with one finger to make sure the tip appears slightly above the container level.
  • Place the tip directly below the center of your cheekbone and stroke it lightly upward and outward toward your ear. Repeat this motion on the other cheek. Next, apply one short stroke to the nose, the chin, and the forehead.
  • To blend, follow the same sequence as in applying moisturizer. Use both hands and be sure to avoid your eye area:
    • Upward and outward from chin to ears
    • Across and up from nose to temples
    • Upward from tip of nose to forehead
    • Circular motions on forehead to temples
    • Small circular motions around sides of nose
    • Circular motions on chin
    • Upward on throat
  • Blend carefully at your jaw line and throat, paying special attention to areas where foundation tends to collect, such as the hairline, the sides of the nose, the area in front of the ears, and the chin.
  • Wipe a tissue over your eyebrows and along your hairline and thoroughly clean both hands before continuing, because foundation can stain your clothing and upholstery.
  • Allow your foundation to "set" for 5-10 minutes before continuing with your makeup routine.

Next Step: Applying Blush

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