There’s a reason foundation is named as such—it really is the foundation for creating smooth, even-toned skin. Despite the word itself sounding old-fashioned, today’s foundations are anything but. Long gone are the heavy substances that created a masklike appearance worthy of theatrical makeup; here to stay is a huge array of highly sophisticated products offering every level of coverage and color tone as well as built-in benefits for your skin, such as moisturizer and SPF protection. From the merest hint of a tinted moisturizer to wet/dry powders, liquids and gels, it’s worth taking time to test the different formulas. Particularly helpful are “custom” foundations in which a precise color match is created for your personal skin tone, along with the coverage you want. Today’s products really do lay the foundations for radiant-looking skin.
— Cheryl Lampard
Pictured, clockwise from top: Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer, $43; narscosmetics.com. Yves Saint Laurent Le Teint Touche Éclat, $57; saksfifthavenue.com. MAC Mineralize Loose Powder Foundation, $32; maccosmetics.com. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation (exclusive), $62; saksfifthavenue.com. Motives Custom Blend Foundation, $65; saloncinternational.com (pigment colors used in custom blending shown above).