1. Expecting foundation to replace your moisturizer.
Foundation can do a lot for your skin, but it can't perform miracles. "Applying foundation to dehydrated and dry skin will cause the foundation to 'grab' the dead skin and cake," says Nancy Reagan, CEO and creator of Bella Reina and Bella Reina Spa. "Exfoliate the skin extremely well and make sure you are using the right moisturizer for your skin." If you're suffering from extremely damaged or dry skin, try Chuda Skincare, which is formulated with Remedea Compound, a medicinal remedy that has been used to treat skin for centuries. It really works--and absorbs quickly so that your skin is prepped for foundation.
Boots No7 Lift & Luminate Foundation
2. Relying on your fingers to do the job of a brush.
There's a reason why foundation makeup brushes exist--they work. Take advantage of all of the great brushes on the market and stop relying on your lovely, but imperfect fingers to get the job done. "Applying foundation with your fingers creates a mess on your skin," Reagan says. "A brush allows you to blend the foundation into the skin."
Dermablend Compact Powder Foundation
3. Cheaping out when it comes to your foundation.
Lipstick dupes are everything--as are cheap kohl eyeliners and even affordable eyeshadow kits and mascara. But skin products, including foundation, are the one place where you'll want to save up and spend a bit more for a quality formula. "Skimping on buying a ‘great’ foundation because of price will show on your face," Reagan says. "A great foundation is all about creating a beautiful canvas for the face. You want to show your facial expressions, but not your flaws. This means that you need pigment to cover. A great foundation will have a higher pigment so that it covers and blends into the skin perfectly."
Giorgio Armani 'Luminous Silk' Compact
4. Using a heavy hand.
You may feel, especially on certain days, like your skin needs extra coverage, but that doesn't mean you should apply five layers of foundation. Heavy makeup can make your skin look worse. "Heavy foundation, whether it's liquid or powder, will make every little line more visible," says Makeup Artist Ulla Gaudin at Tiffin & Posh. "It seems the trend today is to have 'extra super coverage' foundation and coming from the film industry, where those products are absolutely useless (especially on HD), my pro advice is to go with a light HD foundation. If there's a need for more coverage, concealers will do the job without making your entire face look cake-y and older. Personally, I prefer to take care of my skin, so there's nothing to cover. Radiant skin is the best primer for any makeup."
CoverGirl Smoothers Liquid Foundation
5. Attempting to get a tan with foundation.
Now that sunbathing is out of the question, you may have been tempted on more than one occasion to purchase foundation a shade or two darker than your complexion and rely on it to make you look like you've just spent a week in Hawaii. Bad move. "We think that's an easy way to get a more ‘tanned’ look, but nothing could be further from the truth," Gaudin says. "Not only is that dark foundation going to make you look older, most likely it's also the completely wrong tone for your skin and you end up looking either red or dead (ashy). Get a foundation that matches your skin and use a bronzer for that sun-kissed look."
Maybelline Fit Me! Shine Free Foundation