a quick makeup rant

After watching tons of YouTube videos, I am convinced that there is no foundation color that really matches anyone.  I’m not talking about light to dark (although there are definitely too few dark foundations); I’m talking about…well, let’s talk about yellow.

Most fair-to-medium foundations are yellow (I’ve heard a lot of complaints from darker-toned reviewers about dark shades being too red).  This counts even for the so-called “neutral” shades.  Trust me on this; I have completely neutral undertones (yellow looks yellow on me; red looks red), and most neutrals make me look like a white corn kernel — as in, there’s still some yellow there under a layer of pale ash.  That would be okay if they would balance it out with red, but they don’t.

Years ago, before I ever thought of wearing foundation, I worked with an older woman who wore orange foundation — so orange that of course it didn’t match her neck.  She always had a huge line of demarcation at her jaw and by her ears, and sometimes it would slowly turn brown as the day went by.  The rest of her face screamed “orange” across the room.  It looked just awful, and behind her back we nicknamed her “pumpkin face” (we were young and stupid).  I’ve seen a few people make that mistake, most of them older women, and one…well we won’t talk about him on this blog.

Then there are a few foundations that are so pink they can be used as blusher.  Who wants to be that color?  There aren’t many of those in the light-to-medium range, though, so it’s not worth mentioning at length during a rant about yellow.

Anyway, I’ve watched numerous videos where the reviewer has bought something in a store and gotten home to find that it didn’t match them  in non-florescent lighting — or worse yet, they bought something online and the swatch online didn’t resemble reality.  This seems to happen a lot to one of the major reviewers, Tati Westbrook.  I like her a lot and watch her videos, but it seems whenever she says, “this shade is the best match for me,” the next thing that happens is that she starts to put it on and it looks dead yellow.

It’s not just her, it’s a lot of reviewers.  To be fair, when they blend the foundation in, most of the time it turns out to be okay.  So maybe I’m mistaking the first impression with the finished product.  (I won’t blame it on their cameras, since this epidemic of yellow also happens to me at home, in person.)

I thought of this again today while attempting to use the Wet N Wild Photofocus foundation in Nude Ivory.*  This is a bit separate from what I’ve been talking about because this shade doesn’t look yellow at all at any point.  Then again, it looks like you’ve just seen a ghost.  And the next neutral shade down is a bit too dark for me; also, even though it’s a neutral shade as well, it looks yellow.

What is it with all this yellow?  If anyone wants to go into makeup color theory (I can do this with artist’s paint, but not makeup), and explain why most foundations look so impossibly yellow, please do. I don’t get it.

*One day soon I’ll go into the learning curve I underwent after I first bought Photofocus — it’s challenging to apply — but I feel the need to warn folks right now: don’t try to apply it with a dense brush.  It will soak deep into the brush and is water resistant when it dries down (which it does quickly), and because of that you’ll be trying to clean it out of that brush for the next week, guaranteed.  I finally had to clean my brush with Biokleen Dish Liquid.  Use a silicone applicator to spread the Photofocus (don’t use more than a drop of makeup!), and then use a sponge to blend it in.  And do everything as fast as you can.  You’ll be a happier person, trust me.


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