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The great foundation challenge? Finding a formula that covers imperfections, but still lets your natural glow shine through. Here, the best products that do precisely that.
Written By Jess Basser Sanders
Flawless skin is the holy grail of beauty—much sought after, frustratingly difficult to achieve. Few of us are genetically blessed with perfect complexions, so we rely on a little help of the cosmetic variety to help us feel great in our own skin—literally and figuratively. The true trick is finding a foundation that conceals imperfections without obscuring one’s natural glow; this goal can continue to elude even the most beauty-savvy among us.
For advice on the matter, VIOLET GREY turned to makeup artist Nick Barose, the man behind the covetable complexion of Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o. His favorites run the gauntlet from sparingly applied foundation sticks to more traditional, lightweight formulas, to airbrush-effect spray applications, to handy liquid compacts. Below, Barose reveals his favorite products for achieving that luminescent, better-than-naked glow.

barely there
foundations

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Although more akin to a tinted moisturizer than a traditional foundation, Koh Gen Do’s cult favorite provides significant coverage but is still suitable for sensitive skin (it’s fragrance- and paraben-free). The resulting glow, Barose says, “is never too shiny, and looks fresh both in person and for photo ops.”

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Barose recommends this lightweight liquid foundation for normal-to-dry complexions, and likes how it “absorbs into the skin and leaves a nice, silky finish.” He suggests applying three drops with a damp Beautyblender for sheer coverage.

Violet says: The trick to a flawless Beautyblender application is to use a light stippling motion; never drag the sponge across the face. 

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For controlled distribution, Barose chooses Tom Ford’s foundation stick. “It allows you to spot cover and easily layer for more coverage,” he says. Ensure skin is well moisturized—if it’s dry, the look will be more cakey than seamless—before dabbing on the foundation with a finger. Barose also suggests using a sponge to remove excess product, smooth, and finish.

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Lancôme’s jet-set favorite is effectively a foundation in a compact. The lightweight formula and sponge-y delivery system combine the best of both worlds—the power of medium coverage with a barely there feeling. As Barose explains, “the liquid formula in the compact makes it easy to travel with and apply.”
LANCôme
miracle cushion

IN POLITE
SOCIETY

In polite society,
if you have freckles, FLAUNT
 them . 
— VIOLET GREY —
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