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Your true hue: too light? Too dark? Too, eek, orange? Base can go wrong in oh-so-many ways. Let us end your foundation confuzzlement.

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KNOW YOUR UNDERTONES

The first step to finding your perfect foundation is to figure out your skin's undertone--cool, warm or neutral. Go to a department store or beauty boutique and sample three shades that seem right for you. Choose one that's cool (looks sort of pinkish), one that's warm (more orange-y) and one that's neutral (kinda beige).

PUT IT TO THE TEST

Place one stripe of each foundation on your cheek. "Wait about two minutes, as foundation has a tendency to oxidize," celeb makeup artist Gregory Arlt tells us, "oftentimes getting darker than it initially appeared." Two foundations will be really obvious and the third should disappear slightly into your skin. That's the correct undertone. If the undertone seems right but you can still see the foundation, move down or up one in color range.

LIQUID, POWDER OR, GULP, MOUSSE?

When you're figuring out your formula, think about what ya need to balance out your skin type. Gregory recommends that girls with normal to oily skin go for matte-finish liquids or powders. If you've got dry skin, steer clear of powders and mousses--they'll just make your skin look dehydrated. Liquids and creams give your skin the moisturizing drink it needs.

PRIME TIME

The secret to flawless, natural-looking foundation? Smooth skin. Gregory tells us exfoliating twice a week eliminates flakes for a silky base. Before you put on any makeup, apply moisturizer and let it soak in. Girls with breakouts should first apply a primer to avoid drawing attention to bumps.

HANDS OFF!

Resist the urge to finger-paint on your foundation. "Apply a thin layer with a brush or barely damp sponge," Gregory advises (use a dry sponge with powder formulas). Why use tools? The natural oils on your mitts can affect the foundation's color. Start from the middle of your face and work out. Finish with dipping a large, fluffy brush in a pot of translucent powder, blow off the excess and sweep it over your face. Perfection!

PALE SKIN

CoverGirl TruBlend Whipped Foundation in Ivory, $8, drugstores

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Laura Geller Phenomenal Foundation in Light, $35, sephora.com

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BEIGE SKIN

Maybelline Mineral Powder Liquid Foundation in Natural Ivory, $10, drugstores

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Sally Hansen Your Skin Makeup in True Beige, $13, drugstores

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OLIVER SKIN

Maybelline Mineral Power Natural Foundation in Light Beige, $10, drugstores

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IsaDora Velvet Touch Foundation in Sand Beige, $16, cosmeticsmall.com

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Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Foundation in Honey Beige, $8, drugstores

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MAC Mineralize Satinfinish SPF 15 Foundation in NCSO, $27, maccosmetics.com

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DARK SKIN

Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Your Skin Makeup in Chestnut, $13, drugstores

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Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Foundation in Coca, $8, drugstores

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COPYRIGHT 2008 Girls Life Acquisition Corp.
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Copyright 2008 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:GL BEAUTY: YOUR PERFECT SHADE
Author:Abbondanza, Katie
Publication:Girls' Life
Article Type:Buyers guide
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2008
Words:456
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