Want amazing-looking, clear skin even if you don't have it? Makeup artist Bob Scott, who works with celebs like Bella Hadid and Chrissy Teigen, reveals the trick to acing your base. First, he recommends figuring out what undertone your skin has by looking at the veins on the underside of your wrists. If they're mostly blue or purple, you have cool undertones; if they're more of a greenish yellow, you have warm undertones; and if your veins look like a mix of green, blue, yellow, and purple, your undertones are neutral.
Once you know your undertone, it's easier to find your formula, depending on your complexion's needs. "We aren't all one shade all year round, so it's good to create a custom look that complements your natural coloring," Scott says. To nail your exact shade, he recommends picking two tones — a lighter and darker one — and applying the lighter foundation over the triangular area that makes up the center of your face to see how well the shade disappears into your skin. "You'll know it's too light if it looks chalky," he adds. "Then, take the deeper shade and mix it with the lighter one, and blend it over the side of your cheek and down onto your neck. If both shades look good in the store lighting as well as in natural light, you know you've found your go-to and you can blend them together accordingly to match your skin throughout the year."
Here, 15 foundation brands that offer up a wide range of shades so you can find your exact fit.
1. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation
The foundation that set the new standard for shade inclusivity, Pro Filt'r offers 40 shades that range from very fair to very deep with varying undertones. This filter in a bottle literally flew off Sephora's shelves when it launched in fall 2017, and for good reason. If you've been searching for the perfect medium-to-full coverage matte foundation in rich (never ashy) shades, this could be the foundation for you.
Number of shades: 40, from "100" (for very fair) to "490" (for very deep).
2. Flesh Firm Flesh Thickstick Foundation
This compact stick foundation is perfect for giving extra coverage to the areas that need it (like dark under eyes and blemishes) if you'd rather not go with a full face of foundation. It's tiny stature also makes it the perfect size to pop into your purse for on-the-go touch-ups.
Number of shades: 40, from "Froth" to "Espresso."
3. Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Full Coverage Foundation
A pea-size of this creamy full-coverage foundation is all you need for an evened-out complexion. The oil-free formula works to mattify shine without making your skin appear dry and flat.
Number of shades: 40, from "Porcelain Beige" to "Mahogany."
4. bareMinerals Blemish Rescue Skin-Clearing Loose Powder Foundation
This loose mineral foundation not only offers selfie-worthy coverage, but also works to treat acne breakouts while it conceals. It uses a combination of acne-fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid, Kaolin clay, zinc, and sulfur, so you can expect to see your skin clear up in as little as three weeks.
Number of shades: 20, from "Fair" to "Deepest Deep."
5. Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation
Not only does this lightweight foundation range come in 40 complexion-complementing shades, it contains hyaluronic spheres that make sure your skin stays super-hydrated, and leaves you with poreless and perfectly even.
Number of shades: 40, from "Alabaster" to "Dark Brown."
6. Covergirl truBlend Liquid Foundation Makeup
With seven shades in each category: light, medium, and dark, and coverage that still lets your skin breathe (aka isn't heavy), you're sure to find a foundation that suits your skin tone.
Number of shades: 21, from "Ivory" to "Soft Sable."
7. Bobbi Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation
Whether you need coverage in certain spots or are looking to apply a full face of makeup, this lightweight formula gives you an effect that looks like skin, not makeup. Plus, it comes in an abundance of shades that have every skin tone covered.
Number of shades: 27, from "Alabaster" to "Cool Espresso."
8. Lancôme Teint Idole Ultra Cushion Foundation
This long-wearing, oil-free cushion compact is one of my favorites, because, like the Bobbi Brown formula, it too offers ample coverage, yet lets your skin peek through so your makeup doesn't look caked on.
Tip: To be sure you aren't contaminating your cushion, wash your hands or get a fresh makeup sponge before applying or touching up your foundation.
Number of shades: 18, from the "Buff," to "Suede C."
9. Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Foundation
While UD's latest foundation is free of parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, phthalates, GMOs, and triclosan, it's full of nourishing ingredients, like Matrixyl 3000 (a powerful anti-wrinkle peptide), green tea, and Litchiderm to help brighten. It also comes in warm and cool tones to perfectly complement your complexion, and dries matte but still manages to look luminous, thanks to its light-diffusing properties.
Number of shades: 24, from "0.5" (for fair skin) to "12" for (super-deep tones)
10. Anastasia Beverly Hills Stick Foundation
This foundation is the ultimate multitasker. You can use it all-over as a full-coverage formula, sheer it out and wear it as a tinted moisturizer, apply it to trouble spots as concealer, or use it to highlight and contour.
Number of Shades: 30, from "Alabaster" to "Deep Skin With Red Undertones."
11. Black Opal True Color Pore Perfecting Liquid Foundation
This foundation line caters to those on the darker end of the skin tone spectrum who are looking to control excess oil. Fragrance-, oil-, and paraben-free, this formula gives you "I woke up like this" skin (aka not cakey) in just one layer.
Number of shades: 12, from "Champagne Beige" to "Suede Mocha.
12. Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation
If you consider time a luxury, you'll love that this foundation dries right away. The standout ingredient? Cashmere Kaolinite clay, which absorbs oily secretions without robbing your skin of moisture. Shades run from "Pearl," which is meant for very fair skin with neutral undertones, to "Chestnut," which is made for deep skin with neutral to red undertones. In between those, you'll find names like "Shell," "Sand," and "Sable."
Number of Shades: 22, from "Blanc" to "Ebony."
13. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation
Inspired by the silk fashion designer Giorgio Armani chooses for his high-end clothing collections, this lightweight foundation uses Micro-Fil technology for a luminous finish. Shades range from "Color 3," which is for fair women with a neutral undertone, to "Color 14," which is for women with a dark, rich skin with a red undertone.
Number of Shades: 31, from "Fair" to "Deep, Warm."
14. Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat Le Tent Radiance Awakening Foundation
Use this foundation and guess what will happen to your shadowy areas? Boom! Brightened. Your contours? Boom! Highlighted. This luminous foundation has zero opaque fillers, meaning your real skin will still shine through. Although each shade contains the word "beige" in its name, there are options for everybody.
Number of Shades: 22, from "BD10" (fair skin) to "B90" (Very Deep).
15. Diorskin Forever Perfect Foundation
If you're looking for a non-oily foundation that offers matte, medium coverage, this is your formula. It claims to stay put for 16 hours, so you don't have to worry about reapplying it after work before you go out with your girls.
Number of Shades: 23, from "Ivory" to "Ebony."
H/T Cosmo US