How Do I Choose the Right Mineral Foundation Color?

By Lucinda Harper

Mineral powder foundation is a natural and healthy alternative to chemically-altered, pore-clogging liquid foundations. Mineral powder is ideal for all types of skin, especially those with sensitive or acne-prone skin. The key to using mineral foundation is to select the right color for your skin tone. Answering a few questions about your skin will help identify your foundation needs. Finding the perfect shade becomes a very simple process and then you can enjoy all the wonderful benefits of mineral makeup!

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According to Bare Escentuals, a leading producer of Bare Minerals makeup, porcelain to fairly light skin that has a tendency to easily burn should use the fairest foundation. This neutral foundation is a great match for very fair skin tones with a rosy complexion, skin with many freckles and redness. This fair foundation is also highly recommended for anyone who suffers from rosacea; the anti-inflammatory properties of the mineral makeup itself help calm troubled skin.


Skin with yellow undertones should use a light foundation. It is recommended that this shade be used for individuals with light skin that sometimes burns and may have a few freckles when frequently exposed to sun.


Medium is the most widely used and popular shade. Those with a medium complexion and yellowish undertones will use the medium shade of foundation.


Olive or tanned skin should use a mineral foundation with in a tan shade. According to Bare Escentuals, light women of color tend to choose the Bare Minerals color "Tan"' most often.


The deepest shade generally available is dark. Medium women of color with medium-brown skin or a darker complexion with golden undertones should choose this shade.

Blending Colors

Another benefit to using mineral powder foundation is the easy ability to customize the makeup. Color and coverage can customize to the individual wearer. Feel free to blend two colors to achieve the perfect shade, and apply the color lightly or in layers to achieve the ideal look.


Because mineral makeup is made with natural ingredients such as titanium dioxide, mica powder and iron oxides the color tends to warm up after applying to skin. The skin's natural oils activate with the foundation and the foundation color will slightly deepen.

Assessing Color

Herbs of Grace recommends holding up gold or silver jewelry next to your face and see which complements your face. If it's gold, you have warm tones, if silver, cool tones and if both look good, you have a neutral tone. Their website suggests experimenting with different colors in natural light to see what looks best.