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LuLu Belle

What I've Learned About Mineral Makeup Foundation

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Hi,

I started wearing MMU about a year ago, after reading about it on this board. I love it! I've been battling acne & congested pores for 20 years (I'm female in my early 40s) & am pleased to finally learn how to cover my skin imperfections without causing more problems.

I've spent lots of time and a small fortune experimenting with foundations: brands, brushes, primers, concealers, etc, and share what I've learned with the hope that it will save you some leg work (& $$).

Please note that I'm not affiliated with any of the companies/products listed. I'm just an acne.org member like you!

1) Big brand names aren't necessarily better

I've had really great customer service from many small, online-only companies. These women will answer your questions promptly & are truly client-focused. Compared to store brands, the prices are incredible, they explain their ingredients, and they offer generous samples. It's worth the time to go completely through each website to learn about the products, get application tips, and experiment with the samples. Sign up for their email lists to be notified about sales & specials.

It's hard to know which foundation formulas/color matches work best until you get samples & try them.

Listed in no particular order:

LumiereLumiere has a terrific $3 sample program, & a couple of different foundation formulas to choose from. The concealer, when applied with a taklon brush (I prefer Bare Escentual Max Cover-up, with taklon bristles), is awesome over blemishes, brown spots etc. And only $3.50!!

MAD Minerals this is my personal favorite foundation. Barbi fills her jars to the maximum, so you get a lot for the $$.

Pure Luxe Nice color range in foundations (not to mention the eyeshadows--oh, the eyeshadows!! but that's another topic), and I love the finishing powders. You Glow Girl makes me glow without highlighting my scars & wrinkles, and I mix 2/3 April's Mix with 1/3 Radiance as an alternative. I've heard lots of good things about the gel/cream concealers.

Rainbow Minerals & More on eBay--great deals on starter kits

Companies I'm less familiar with but have heard good things about:

BareFaced Minerals

Cory Cosmetics

Fusion of Color

JLynne Cosmetics Check out the application guide! Great before/after pics!

Melange

Mineral Basics

Mineral Boutique

Valerie Beauty & Skincare

Alima Cosmetics

2. Brushes Make a Huge Difference

People have different tolerances for bristle types--what may feel acceptable to your friend could feel very rough to you! You can really irritate your face & aggravate your acne with the wrong bristle type. Squirrel, badger, and taklon seem to feel softest to most people. It's also important to wash your brushes regularly. Some can get pretty pricey, but if you take care of them they'll last a very long time. I wash mine out with baby shampoo every week and dry them laying on a towel on the edge of my bath tub, with the bristles slanting down. This way the water won't get up into the ferrule & weaken the glue, causing the bristles to fall out.

The kabuki style brush is best for applying foundation; use a small, flat taklon brush to apply concealer to trouble areas. Most of the companies I mentioned above sell brushes.

3. Consider Using a Primer

My philosophy has always been to keep my skincare/makeup routine as simple as possible. However, it's worth it to add the extra step of applying primer before foundation. Silicones don't make me break out...they create a matte, smooth surface that seems to help the minerals "adhere" & keeps oiliness to a minimum. My personal faves are:

Monistat Soothing Care Chafing Relief Gel/Powder: I know what you're thinking...but this has nothing to do with yeast. It has similar ingredients as expensive makeup-brand primer but is less than $10 at your local mass retailer. It has no color or fragrance & a tube will last a long time.

Smashbox Photo Finish Primer with SPF 15: this is a bit spendy at $42, but it's awesome! Plus it guarantees you have your SPF 15 protection on. Light pink in the bottle, it is colorless & has no fragrance.

4. Concealing Problem Areas

Concealers come in either powder, gel, or "cake" form, and in a variety of colors. For some people, using a green concealer to cover red spots works well (green cancels out the redness). I could never find a green that didn't look bizarre under my foundation, so I use a yellowish one. I prefer one with silicones (Lumiere's is my favorite) but know many people who get great results from powder. You can use a clean ring finger to apply, but I find using a taklon brush gives better coverage due to applying the product more densely. I use this to cover cysts, red & brown marks, & undereye circles. For some people, applying a slightly lighter shade of foundation over the areas works well, too.

5. Practice Makes Perfect

It does take some practice to get the application down. I use a small glass bowl, tap a TINY amount of powder in, swirl my kabuki in it, tap it a few times to get the excess off, and apply it in a circular motion to my face. You can do this several times to get the coverage you need. Check your look in the sunlight to make certain your coverage is just right (and the color as well).

6. Ask the Experts

I've learned a ton from the forums over at Delphi--Mineral Makeup Mania & Be Beautiful Cafe. The ladies there are very generous with their knowledge!

I hope you find this information helpful.

Best wishes from Lulu Belle

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thank you for all these links! i've been thinking about using mineral makeup. all i knew about was the bare mineral ones, and i can't afford all that.

the MAD site looks very interesting.

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Good info for beginners! I've learned most of that on this board & from my own experience. I have yet to try a primer, but am thinking about it. I also have to agree on the yellow vs green concealer; yellow looks waaaay more natural under my foundation & gets the job done.

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thank you for all these links! i've been thinking about using mineral makeup. all i knew about was the bare mineral ones, and i can't afford all that.

the MAD site looks very interesting.

The affordability is one thing I like about MMU--it's very inexpensive to try a new company, formula or color--so there's no reason not to find something you really like.

Glad I could introduce you to some new sources!

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Good info for beginners! I've learned most of that on this board & from my own experience. I have yet to try a primer, but am thinking about it. I also have to agree on the yellow vs green concealer; yellow looks waaaay more natural under my foundation & gets the job done.

i agree, Lulu... this was a great post for beginners & even a few things i never knew before. i hadn't thought of trying the yellow on my extremely red spots, as opposed to green -- and the green has always looked strange on me. anyway, thanks for writing this all out! :D

Sioux, do you use a liquid yellow, or just a MMU powder? do you find that it makes a difference what formula the corrector is?

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Sioux, do you use a liquid yellow, or just a MMU powder? do you find that it makes a difference what formula the corrector is?

I use a powder MMU concealer, by EM. Not a pure yellow, but it's a very yellow skin tone type of color. Although I have used a pure yellow concealer stick in the past & it worked pretty well. Yellow works for under eye circles too. I think I used Physicians Formula.

If I want fast (as in, not having to layer) & heavy coverage then a cream concealer seems better, but I like MMU cuz it's so light & doesnt look heavy for everyday use. It covers well enough for me now.

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