Updated: Jun 5, 2020

It goes without saying that makeup is a very important part of our lives. Many don’t leave the house without their favourite lipstick. Makeup gives us confidence!

Let’s do an experiment: take a look inside your bag right now, I bet you can find at least one makeup item. Even if it’s just a mascara, or a lip balm. For the vast majority it will be a bag full of different products: lipsticks, blushers, powders, brushes, eyeshadows and many more. Am I right? But how much of the makeup you have is actually right for you?

Today I will talk about different foundations and how to choose the right one for you, especially for such an important event as your Wedding Day.


I am sure many of you reading this article already have a favourite foundation. For some it may be a holy grail from the school days. For others, something your favourite blogger has recommended. However, if you are lost in a never-ending world of choices offered by brands this article is for you.


As a professional bridal makeup artist with many years of experience working with different ethnicities on a daily basis, I understand which foundations are more suited to each skin type. Today I will share with you how I choose the right product when working with new clients for the first time.

NB. The advice given below is from a makeup artists perspective. Each case is individual and can vary from person to person. Take my advice as guidance only. More serious skin concerns should be addressed by a registered dermatologist.

Generally I am guided by the following:


It is very important to understand what skin type you have. I am a big believer that some skin types and foundations are not friends. For example, if you have a dry skin, then strong oil control foundations are not your best choice. Or, if you are very oily it’s best to avoid foundations that are oil-infused. Let’s have a look at each skin type separately.

Normal Skin

If you are not particularly oily, nor dry and and your skin does not feel tight after a wash, congratulations - most likely you have a normal skin type. Most of the products feel and look good on normal skin. It is the easiest type to work with and will look good in most of the foundations including the ones for dry and oily skin types.

Foundations that look amazing on normal skin are: Armani Luminous Silk, Armani Power Fabric, Too Faced Born This Way, Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder, Clinique Even Better, Chanel Les Beiges.

These are my go to when doing bridal makeup.

Dry Skin

I myself have normal to dry skin, so I know a lot about it.

Dry skin is a thirsty type. It loves moisture!

The preparation and right choice of products is the key! If not prepared properly, the foundation will gather around dry patches, look flaky or open up around fine lines. The face will feel dry and uncomfortable. For me personally, a wrong moisturiser is a recipe for an uncomfortable tight feeling throughout the day.

Serums, rich moisturisers and oils in combination with moisturising and oil-infused foundations are all a good choice when working with very dry skin.

When working with brides, a good moisturising face mask the night before the wedding day and then again in the morning is a good idea. A skin toner without alcohol, followed by serum and a good moisturiser is a must!

My choice of foundations for dry skin is: Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder, Clinique City Radiance, NARS Sheer Glow, Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Foundation ( not for very dry skin though). For photoshoots I love Mac Pro Full Coverage Foundation and Tom Ford Traceless Foundation Stick.



If you feel your skin is eating the product and your foundation disappears after a few hours, it may be because your skin is extremely dehydrated. If this is the case - it is very important to use a rich moisturiser and choose an oil-infused foundation (It is a suggestion only and may not work for everyone). Don’t forget to use a primer and powder on top. You can also seal the makeup with a hydrating setting spray. My favourite for dry skin is from Too Faced - ‘Hangover Spray’. Not only it smells divine and refreshes the makeup, but also seals it in place without making skin feel heavy. It is also great to refresh the look throughout the day, especially for the brides.

Foundations for very dehydrated skin I love are: NARS Full Coverage Radiant Foundation, I often mix it with NARS Sheer Glow to give it more moisture. Tom Ford Traceless Stick also works magic on very thirsty skin types.

Oily Skin

Oily skin is a difficult one. There is a big misunderstanding that it doesn’t need moisture. It is one of the biggest mistakes when working with oily skin. When not hydrated properly, it produces more oil. That however doesn’t mean that you have to pile on tons of random moisturisers. It has to be the right choice of product. The best moisturisers for oily skin are the ones with oil control. Different brands will offer different options, so you may need to try a few before finding the one that works for you.

Good moisturisers for oily skin I love are: Embryolisse Hydra - Mat Emulsion and Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Gel.

My favourite foundations for oily skin are: Inglot All Covered, Estee Lauder Doublewear (these are full coverage foundations, or as I call them - industrial strength foundations aka mad bastard ones). For lighter coverage I really like Naked Skin by Urban Decay and also their Naked concealer goes well with it.

Combination Skin

Combination skin type is probably one of the hardest types to please.

It can be dry in some parts and oily in others. The understanding of these areas is key in tackling a good makeup routine.

Usually clients with combination skin types tend to have oily T-zone and dryness around the cheeks, nostrils, sometimes the jaw line.

This is the skin type where you really have to think through which products to use and where to place them. I normally treat each area accordingly. After I toned and applied serum all over, I treat each area locally. Oily areas I moisturise with oil control cream, dry or flaky areas - with rich moisturiser. Oil - control primers are also a good idea. There are some really good foundations for combination skin on the market. My favourites are: Inglot All Covered Foundation, Estee Lauder DoubleWear (not great if skin is more on the dry side) Too Faced Born This Way, M.A.C. Studio Skin Finish.



From time to time my clients come in with the complaint that recently their skin quality has decreased. There may be a few factors to look into:

1. Have you changed your skin routine?

2. Have you changed your diet recently?

3. Have you had one too many the other night?

4. Is your lifestyle healthy enough?

5. Do you drink plenty of water?

6. Have you been under any stress recently?

7. Do you have enough hours of sleep?

You may be able to find some answers above.

However if your skin becomes problematic and you have no answer as to why, the best thing is to make an appointment with your dermatologist. I had several cases of clients who’s outbreaks were controlled by a treatment appointed by a professional dermatologist. By the time of the wedding day we had clear skin and flawless makeup.



You may be puzzled as to which coverage is right for you.

Is it a light coverage, but what if the foundation won’t last all day?

Or maybe you are used to full coverage, but what if it looks cakey?

There is no definite answer. I would say everything depends on the skin condition and personal preference. Generally I tend to use light to medium coverage on clients with clean non-problematic skin, unless requested otherwise. On clients with pigmentation, skin conditions and acne I tend to use fuller coverage foundations, or a medium coverage with local spot/ pigmentation correction using heavier concealers.


When working with rosacea and skin pigmentation, colour correctors come in handy.

Remember, that dull, yellow skin can be brightened with lilac correctors, redness with green. Darker under eye circles on light to medium skin tones are corrected using peach correctors/ concealers. Darker under eye circles and discolouration on darker skin tones is corrected with orange correctors (on very dark skin tones with red). These are usually applied on problematic areas after skin is toned and moisturised, but before the foundation.



In the past several years we were bombarded by glossy, strobed skin from every magazine cover. These times are now over and we are welcoming a new trend: a healthy, well looked after skin. Perhaps a little dewy, but not overly highlighted. Great news for girls with oily skin :)

Don’t forget that trends remain trends. The new year will come and a new trend will replace the old one. When working in the bridal industry, as a professional hair and makeup artist, I must not only think about what’s currently in trend, but also what will be a great timeless look for each individual client. So constantly chasing trends may not be beneficial in the long run.

OK, back to the skin. There are many foundations on the market that can achieve matt, velvet or glowing finish. Let’s have a look.

Best Matt Foundations

Clinique Stay Matte Oil - Free Foundation.

Fenty Beauty PRO FILT'R Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

Make Up Forever Matte Velvet Skin Full Coverage Foundation

EX1 Invisiwear Liquid Foundation

Best Velvet Foundation

Too Faced Born This Way

Chanel Les Beiges

Best Glowing Foundation

Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder

NARS Sheer Glow

Bourjois City Radiance

Arbonne Intelligence CC Cream

Rodial Skin Tint +


Good skin starts with good lifestyle choices.

Having a great makeup artist to cover up bad skin is not the best thinking. The finish of makeup will always depend on the canvas. The quality of the skin finish on the big day is defined not only by the correct product choice, but by correct lifestyle choices such as diet and exercise.

I always suggest my clients drink plenty of water, minimise stress ( I know it's difficult!) , sleep well, exercise, eat plenty of green, leafy vegetables, drink less alcohol. Your skin will thank you, and me :) !

Stay well and safe!

Your Artist, Tamara.



Quick and easy to read article on what skin care products I can not live without this summer. Everything you need to nourish your skin and pamper yourself.

To read the full article, please click here

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