As a makeup artists, one of the questions I am most often asked is asked by lovely freckled ladies – “How in the world am I supposed to apply foundation?!”
If you have a significant amount of freckles on your face, particularly over the nose and on the tops of the cheeks, you may find that your foundation tends to look blotchy or gray in spots. This is a completely common issue to run into, and you’re not applying foundation wrong. You’re applying your foundation like someone WITHOUT freckles would apply it. It’s a right way, it’s just not the right way for you. The key to perfection is all in the amount of coverage.
If you have freckles, you have two choices for coverage; sheer, or full. Medium coverage foundation won’t work, because it allows just enough of the natural skin to show through in a way that will make your freckles appear ghostly, and gray. You need one extreme or the other. Completely provide translucency for your freckles, or erase them from existence entirely.
If you have generally problem free skin, go with sheer coverage. Apply the absolute minimum amount of something with very light pigment. Instead of BB creams, shoot for CC creams, like Clinique Moisture Surge CC Cream. If you use them all the time, the added skincare benefits will help even out your skintone. That’s a concern that a lot of women with freckles have. If clinical benefits aren’t quite what you’re looking for, try a foundation like Estee Lauder Double Wear
Light, a version of the all too popular Double Wear that’s more comfortable for people seeking a lighter coverage.
If you have very problematic skin, use a full coverage. By problematic skin, I mean skin where acne or severe blemishes interfere with the pattern of your freckles. Try a full coverage cream foundation like those made by Ben Nye. While it’ll cover your blemishes, it’ll also cover all of your freckles. It may be a trade that you find worthwhile to keep acne from showing up.
If you only have occasional breakouts, follow the advice for problematic skin on the days when you need it, and sheer out the cream foundation by mixing it with moisturizer (or something like MAC Strobe Cream) on the days that you don’t need the extra help. I’ve found that 3/4 very thin moisturizer (as thicker moisturizers can cause a negative affect) to 1/4 cream foundation, mixed on the back of the hand, works fine, and it doesn’t require you to purchase a multitude of foundations. I used this method on the model in the above photo.