Foundation mixing 101

What do you do if the foundation you like, with the perfect finish and feel on the skin, is just a tad too light/dark/yellow etc? What do you do if you find a foundation in your perfect shade but not so perfect finish? What should I do with the leftover foundation samples aside from doodling with them? Mix them for the perfect shade, opacity and finish of course!



If you do have a foundation, you can just mix it with your moisturizer or primer to basically get the same effect as tinted moisturizer or BB cream, right? yes, but with a couple caveat depending on what you are mixing it with…..

Rule of thumb

– Mix like with like. Of course you can mix two foundations from the same line together, however, take note of ingredients when mixing. If you mix a water-based foundation with an oil-based foundation, they may separate. Primers have silicone, which gives it that cream but dry/smoothing feel, so it’s harder to mix with foundation unless it also contain silicone. Don’t mix powder with liquid etc.

–  Make sure your skin is ok with all the products before mixing. If you are allergic to an ingredient in one of the foundations, or your skin hates anything except oil-free and one foundation is oil-based, then don’t use them. Mixing them with something else will dilute it but won’t eliminate it. Do a patch test and try wearing them on your face before mixing.

– Mix and store portions at time. Try mixing them on back of your hand and apply to see if the shade matches, then try mixing in a sample jar or small pump bottle for ease of use. This way you don’t have to mix every morning, and can adjust the shade/texture depending on the season (lighter and more moisturizing in the winter, darker and sheerer in the summer etc).

Desired effect

Sheer it out (tinted moisturizer): mix foundation with a moisturizer or primer to sheer it out. HOWEVER, if you get your main/sole source of SPF during the day from your moisturizer/primer, it is better to wear a separate sunscreen. Or make sure that both products you are mixing contain SPF so you won’t lose the effect.

More dewy finish/hydration: adding oil will provide more hydration and a dewy finish. However, a little goes a long way so be careful not to use too much. 1 drop of oil vs. 4 drop of liquid foundation is probably plenty, and make sure to mix with an oil based foundation instead of water based to prevent separation. If you want the dewy effect without hydration, then try mixing the foundation with an liquid/cream illuminator.

Lighter or darker color: if you are inbetween colors for a brand but is totally fine with the consistency or finish, then it might be better to get the lighter and darker color then mix it yourself to the perfect color. This way you don’t have to worry about matching consistency. You can go darker in the summer if you get a tan, or lighter in the winter when you are paler. And if you are into contouring, just apply the lighter shade where highlighters are suppose to go and darker shades where bronzers go for a natural look without additional products.



The information here is based on my personal experience mixing the stuff I have and the following readings:


5 thoughts on “Foundation mixing 101

  1. My oh my you are quite the artist! I cant draw a decent happy face ( jelly!). I use liquid bronzer to add some warmth to foundations that are too light ( I have a perricone md one). I also have a couple of bases from napoleon perdis ( one in fair and one in medium) to mix with foundations to lighten or darken the color. I also use my sunscreen to lighten foundations, its a white liquid thats perfect for mixing ( neutrogena pure and free liquid daily sunblock). My skintone changes so much throughout the year that I need things like that! ( I’m fair in winter, light most of year and medium after summer). Great post, pretty pictures, LOVE!

    1. Ohh, I have not tried using sunscreen to lighten foundation. Some of my sunscreen goes on white, but it disappears after I rub it in. I do find most foundation oxidizes on me tho, so I might check out Neutrogena later.

      Haha, thanky thanky about the pictures. I had too much extra foundation and butcher paper so… =P

    2. I agree! I can’t draw either, so i’m quite impressed!

      I like the idea of mixing sunscreen with foundation… I tried it with a moisturizer once but i got the proportions all wrong and it was weird!

      (PS sephoramusthave I haven’t seen you on BT lately? i’m jxw200 on there <3)

      1. Joyce(bronzerbunny)/jxw200–Hey! I still hover around BT from time to time, I’ve mostly been posting in the lipstick challenge thread! Been having fun wearing a new lippie everyday 😀

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