The 7 most Googled questions about foundation answered

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Bobbi Brown
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From how to lighten foundation to stopping cakey or patchiness, we asked an expert how to solve the internet’s biggest foundation dilemmas…     

It’s the start of every flawless make-up look, but foundation is still notoriously tricky to nail. 

From avoiding that cakey look to how to clean your brushes (you’re almost definitely not doing it enough), there are just some things you don’t get taught in school.

But your base doesn’t have to fall short. To help you achieve Insta-ready skin, we put the internet’s most asked questions about foundation to professional make-up artist and all-round beauty expert Amy Conway.

Read on for your most flawless skin ever…

1. How can I stop cakey foundation?

According to Conway, there are just three steps to flawless foundation without a cakey finish. 

“Firstly, use a primer to prep skin before makeup,” says Conway. 

“Then use a brush to ensure that you don’t use too much product and can blend seamlessly. Finally, my favourite tip is to use the warmth of your hands to press foundation into your skin after application. 

This will give you flawless yet natural coverage.”

2. How do you apply liquid foundation?

When it comes to applying liquid foundation, Conway insists it’s all about the tools. 

“A foundation brush is essential for a flawless base that gives an airbrushed finish as well as lasting longer,” she says. 

“Always brush down the face, as that’s the way the hair lies.”

Using a high-quality foundation always helps to achieve a woke-up-like-this look. 

Bobbi Brown’s Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF15 gives full coverage with a matte finish that’s still hydrating and natural-looking. 

Ultra-blendable, it’s easy to apply this liquid base.

3. What undertone do I have?

It’s such a simple question, but nobody ever seems to know the answer - until now. 

“Your undertone is determined by the amount of red and yellow mix we have in our skin,” explains Conway. 

“Neutral skins have a perfect balance of each. Cool skin tones often carry more red and you see this come through as pinky, rosy or deep cinnamon tones in the skin. 

Warm tones carry more yellow and you see this come through as pale yellow, olive and golden in the skin. 

A good guide I always use is think about the way you naturally tan, do you see more pinky/cinnamon tones or olive/golden?”

4. How do you apply foundation with a sponge?

Seems simple, but there is a knack to getting sponge application right. 

“Sponges are great for super oily skin types,” says Conway. 

“Apply foundation to the skin and then ‘bounce’ the sponge across the skin to build up coverage.” 

5. Why does my foundation go patchy?

Patchy foundation normally means dehydrated skin, so hydrating products are essential. 

“A primer is an absolute must,” says Conway, “as it’s the barrier between skin and make-up. 

For dehydrated skins, primer stops the skin acting like a sponge and ‘drinking’ up the makeup, which causes patchiness.”

6. How can I lighten my foundation? 

Summer tan fading? There’s no need to buy a whole new bottle. 

“My favourite tip for lightening foundation is to mix it in with Extra Illuminating Moisture Balm

This gorgeous glowing balm is also great for under and on top of makeup, but mixed in with your foundation, it gives a super bright and radiant finish.”

7. How do you clean a foundation brush?

I mean, who really washes their brushes enough? 

Conway suggests washing your tools every two weeks, using a conditioning cleaner to keep things squeaky clean. 

“With water, lather the cleanser and brush through the brush hair only. 

Dry by placing the brush on the side of a counter, allowing the bush to hang slightly off the side for ventilation.” 

Nail your foundation with Bobbi Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF 15. The 16-hour formula has true-to-skin pigments that offer natural shades while natural mineral powders help to control excess oil and shine.