Savvy secrets to sensational skin

If your skin needs some concealer, use a shade slightly lighter than that of your foundation or mineral powder.

by Linda Leibl — 

Many of you know the basics of skincare — some of the do’s and don’ts, how to apply your products, and the regime and specifics for your skin type. What you might not know is that there are a lot of great new options for enhancing your skin, as healthier, more natural lines of skincare products are now available. This includes the foundation you use and how you apply it.

In this article, we’ll explore how to find the best skin products, and some tips on how to use them. Read on and you might be surprised by what you learn.

How to find a perfect cosmetic line

First, it’s essential to know that 98 percent of American products are filled with petroleum, heavy minerals, animal byproducts, and artificial chemicals and fragrances that are more harmful than helpful to your skin. This means you must study a product’s list of contents before you buy anything.

When you begin doing research, be sure to seek a proprietary line that carries nontoxic, chemical-free products that are botanically and herbal based, and that also utilize various scientific advancements. The products should also address the prevention and after-effects of sun exposure and aging.

Look for a brand of skincare products that offers a complete line for the face and body, and that are formulated to work together. By using more than one brand, you often end up applying too many different formulations to your skin. Like building a car, you need to use pieces that were specifically manufactured or formulated to work together to maximize their performance.

Ask for a pH-correct product to ensure maximum benefits. Make sure each product is pH correct, not balanced. This means the product has been formulated to test between 6.4 and 7.4 on the pH scale. Balanced means that a cleanser may be 4.5 and your moisturizer 8.2, and together they balance each other. If one of your products is not correct, it could strip the acid mantle off your face, which is akin to a bikini waxing on third-degree sunburned skin. Not only is this unhealthy for your skin, but it also can promote scarring and, ultimately, premature aging.

Be sure to ask if the products have been tested on voluntary humans under the watchful eye of an independent dermatologist, and if substantiation and safety testing were performed at independent laboratories on voluntary human panels only, with no testing on animals. Also, ask if the products are formulated with animal byproducts, and if focused research was done on plant and herbal compounds. You don’t want any products formulated with chemical dyes or fragrances that have known irritants or can cause reactions.

Consider looking at European product lines. For almost 30 years, Europe has been at the forefront in the skincare arena and known for delivering the latest in cutting-edge technology. European companies focus on integrity, constantly monitoring their biologists, chemists and herbalists. Overall, their standards seem to be much higher than those of American companies.

Hints for applying foundation

When shopping for foundations, keep a few things in mind. If you have oily skin, you want to stay away from any oil-based products. Those with dry skin should avoid matte products. If you are one of the lucky few with flawless skin, you can use a matte liquid base foundation (applied with a good sponge), and top it off with a mineral powder or neutral powder, depending on the look you are trying to achieve. If you have fine hairs on your cheeks, brush powder downward over this area to your jaw and neckline.

If your skin needs some concealer, use a shade slightly lighter than that of your foundation or mineral powder. Do not apply concealer over your entire face, only on blemishes or areas under your eyes to lighten any discoloring. Use your concealer before applying foundation, unless the manufacturer suggests the reverse; or try both ways to see which gives a smoother appearance.

Always pay attention to your neck and jaw line; these areas should be treated in the same way as the rest of your face, so that your makeup will appear as natural as possible. This is especially important if you’re going to be photographed. The light from a camera tends to bounce off makeup, giving it an unappealing mask appearance in photos. So be sure your makeup continues past your jaw area and down your neck.

If you live in a warm, sunny climate and are going to be outside for more than an hour or two, it’s a good idea to apply a second coat of makeup for extra protection, followed by your sunscreen. Make sure to blend the foundation in the area between your jaw and neck. Consider using a cosmetic sponge, which will give you the best coverage, will blend your foundation evenly and won’t contaminate your skin, as your fingers can.

You should also schedule a makeup session every two to three years to keep your look fresh and youthful because makeup concepts, techniques and application are always evolving, just like in the fashion world.

For example, there is a new makeup primer that goes under your foundation to create a translucent, radiant and glowing look. It is a blend of vitamins that has skin-perfecting pigments, advanced blending appeal and anti-aging ingredients that work in harmony to help tone, smooth and minimize the visual appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and enlarged pores.


Linda L. Leibl, B.S., therapeutic aesthetician, founded Advanced Skin Technology in 1993. She has been featured on KXAM Radio, the health feature on the local news on Channels 5, 10, 12 and 15 and interviewed by the Scottsdale Airpark News. Visit to view exciting before-and-after photos and information on Linda’s background, services and products. or 480-443-3445.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 27, Number 6, December 2008/January 2009.

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