Health & Beauty

How To: Applying Mineral Foundation Powder

pure-mineral-makeupHow many of you remember those late night infomercials advertising mineral make-up? Thinking back, did you ever (even in a million years), think that this tap and buff powder would make a mark on the world of make-up? Could you ever have predicted that it would take the entire make-up world by storm? I sure didn’t. And, all these years later, its popularity is nowhere near waning. Why? Because (for those of you that don’t already know) it is completely natural, it heals and soothes the skin, the colors are forgiving enough so that women always choose the right shade and above all else it is so easy to apply, even the most un-make-up-savvy woman can use it. All that being said, it makes perfect sense to me why you ladies love it.

As with pretty much everything else, there is a fast way to apply loose minerals and a slightly lengthier way. Neither way is right or wrong, but, I’ll tell you this, the additional steps do tend to lead to a better, longer lasting and more natural pay off. Below you will find the complete instructions, but if you want a faster and easier route skip any steps that don’t fit into your lifestyle.

Prepare the Canvas.

An artist always primes his canvas before he begins painting any new masterpiece. He does this because he knows that the paint will glide more smoothly and it will survive better through the years if he puts in the few extra steps. The same can be said about make-up and our faces. If you want your foundation to look natural and last all day, it is essential that your canvas be ready before you apply it.

cetaphilStep 1. Cleanse.

This step speaks for itself. If you are not already cleansing your face morning and night, then it’s time you start. Keeping your skin free of dirt and airborne debris is the first step toward a flawless complexion. I’ll say it again and again, I LOVE CETAPHIL (at about $12 for a huge bottle, you should love it too).

olay-regeneristStep 2. Moisturize.

Supple, hydrated skin is the key to a flawless make-up application. If your skin is dry, foundation will grab onto the dry patches and draw even more attention. And let’s face the facts, dry skin looks old (and I can say, with near certainty, that no one wants to look older them they have to. Am I right?). Try Avon or Oil of Olay. Both are very, very affordable (under $30) and both beat their higher priced competitors in trial after trial.

p231606_heroStep 3. Prep.

The make-up primer is one of my favorite secret weapons. The light liquids in these trusty little tubes will fill pores, smooth fine lines and create a little barrier between your skin and the make-up. This little barrier does more than protect your pores; it lays the groundwork that will give your make-up all day wear. Who doesn’t want that? If your skin is normal, try Cover FX’s SkinPrep FX ($45), but if you are acne prone try their ClearPrep FX ($39).

Applying The Foundation.

350_puremattefinishYour face is now prepped and primed for make up. A word of warning….Before putting on the mineral foundation be sure that the moisturizer and primer are fully absorbed and dry. Damp skin will grab the powder and leave deep streaks of color across the face. I always tell my clients to have a cup of coffee or fix their hair between preparing the canvas and applying the foundation. If you don’t have the time for that, be sure to blot your skin with a tissue, or better yet, a blotting powder. Try Jane Iredale’s PureMatte Finish Powder. Before we begin, keep this one little thought in mind; foundation is our dirty little secret. No matter how much you wear, no one should ever see it. All they should see is your flawless skin.

p231608_heroStep 1. Load.

Tap a small amount of powder into the mineral foundations lid. Dip the brush into the powder. A dense kabuki brush works well, but I prefer the #190 or #160 Foundation Brush by Cover FX ($49 and $38). These brushes will give your make-up the airbrushed finish you always dreamed of.

Step 2. Apply.

Starting at the outside of your face, buff the powder onto the skin using a small circular motion. After doing the outer areas, move on to the cheeks, and nose. One layer should be enough, but if some areas need additional coverage (very red cheeks for example), tap a touch more powder onto the brush and apply more only where needed.

Step 3. Conceal.

img-thingA good mineral foundation, in most cases, should be your concealer and foundation in one. When minerals are blasted they become magnetic. This makes it easy to build additional layers of coverage only where they are needed. To conceal under the eyes, around the mouth, nose or on a blemish, just dip a concealer brush into the powder and pat it over the discoloration or blemish. They will disappear before your eyes.

My two favorite brands for loose (and pressed) mineral foundations are Jane Iredale ( and Cover FX ( The ingredients are top of the line and they will heal your skin while you wear them. In this day and age, why wear something that only sits on your skin when you can be wearing something that improves it.


base-looseOne last bit of advice… if you get a little oily during the day, don’t touch up with more mineral foundation. The result will be a cakey mess. Simply press blotting papers onto the oil spots and follow up with a touch of the blotting powders I mentioned earlier.


Now get out there and be beautiful.

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