Happy Sunday guys! Today I thought I’d start a new mini series on the blog by breaking down some essential pieces of advice every beginner should have for perfecting certain aspects of makeup. So many people ask me makeup questions, especially about skin, so I’m starting with tools for creating the perfect base.

I’ve spent a lot of time and money over the years perfecting my base application to cover dark circles, acne, redness and the occasional scab from picking my face, so here are the tips, tools and tricks I’ve learnt for creating a perfect base.

Primer

Primer is a key part of creating a smooth, flawless base. A good primer should match your foundation in terms of the base ingredient. Silicone based primers don’t work so well with water based foundations and vice versa. That being said, for a special occasion or night out you can often cheat that fact into working in your favour if you application is good. I like primers with blurring abilities and pore reducing elements, but often these are silicone based. I apply any primer with my fingers so the warmth from my hands helps it melt into the skin, then I let it sit for a few minutes before moving on to foundation.

Foundation, Concealer & Application

Whatever coverage your foundation or concealer, blending is key. Ears, neck, right up to the hairline, blend that mother out like your life depends on it. I favour foundations that are fuller coverage but buildable so I can use them for both every day and special events. In terms of application, there are very few foundations or concealers that don’t work with Beauty Blender, but lately I’ve been using the soniaxfyza buffing technique, so I’ve been making use of a stippling brush and a flat concealer brush,  and I think I prefer it. Then I just use my Beauty Blender for baking application.

Contour & Highlight

Honestly, the easiest way to do these steps well is to under-do them! Being overly enthusiastic with your contour or highlight just looks really fake and bad in my opinion. I love a good defined cheekbone and a great glow, but it looks far too harsh and unnatural if you’ve used tape or far too dark shades to cut your cheekbones. Stick to the same undertones as your own complexion too – I’m cool toned, so I don’t like contour or highlight that’s too warm. My go to contour is actually a black eyeshadow as it just looks far more realistic on my pale, cool toned skin!

Powder Products

Baking is a great tool, but I don’t use it if I think there’ll be flash photography at an event. It nearly always gives me that overly bright under eye area that looks really weird in photos. If I want to bake for an event, I’ll normally bake my entire face with translucent powder so any flashback is hidden because my entire complexion has the same level of powder on it! Powder blush, contour and highlight is the same – blend & blend and don’t over-do it. Wayne Goss had a great tip for blush application that really lifts the face: don’t smile when you apply it, your cheeks will drop when you stop smiling and your blush will be lower than you’ve intended! I also apply my blush last after my contour and highlight so it blends all the edges seamlessly.

In reality, skin never looks as perfect as it does in photos, but the right combination of products and tools can really help you lift your complexion and give you the perfect start to any makeup look. I’ll be the first to admit a good base takes time and patience, so I don’t bother with it every day! The biggest thing about a good base is that it takes practice as well – let’s face it, contouring doesn’t come naturally, and it’s only with practice that it looks really lovely and real. Do you have any tips for creating a perfect base? Let me know in the comments!

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