It is often a serious challenge to choose a foundation shade that matches your skin tone, particularly since some brands have limited shade ranges. Your skin changes color throughout the year too, which complicates the search even more since a shade that works for your skin in the winter may not match come summer. If your liquid makeup is too light for your skin, you don't necessarily have to toss it. Darken up your foundation with products that you already have at home so it works year-round.
In the winter, when you’re not as likely to spend time outside in the sun, your skin may be light. But your complexion darkens in summer as you spend more time outdoors, which means you may need a darker liquid foundation. To tell if your foundation is too light for your skin, swipe the product along your lower cheek and jawline. Stand in front of a window with your mirror, or take your mirror outside to see the foundation in natural light. The liquid foundation should disappear into your skin -- if it stands out in a white, chalky stripe, you need to darken it.
The easiest way to darken your liquid foundation is to mix it with foundation in a darker shade. Start with equal parts of the light and dark shades, and mix them together on the back of your hand. Apply a swatch to your jawline to see if the shade is right. If it’s too light or dark, add a little more of the corresponding liquid foundation to create the perfect match for your skin.
If you use self-tanner on your face, your skin tone may change on a regular basis. Instead of adding another foundation shade to your liquid makeup, mix in some sheer liquid or gel bronzer. In addition to being darker, the bronzer also gives your makeup a warmer tone so it matches your faux tan well. Combine your liquid makeup and bronzer on the back of your hand, and test it on your jawline to verify that you have the right shade. If you’re using a bronzing gel, mix it with the liquid makeup carefully to get a smooth, even consistency.
If you apply your liquid makeup and discover that it’s slightly too light when it’s already all over your face, you don’t have to take it off and start over. Layer a darker face powder over the foundation to darken it so it matches your natural skin tone. Use a fluffy powder brush to apply it so the powder doesn’t look too heavy or cakey on the skin. Blend some powder over your neck too, so all of your skin is the same color.
Based in New York City, Jennifer Blair has been covering all things home and garden since 2001. Her writing has appeared on BobVila.com, World Lifestyle, and House Logic. Blair holds a Bachelor of Arts in Writing Seminars from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.