Back to basics: Choosing your mineral foundation

June 11, 2012

It’s so important to find the right shade of mineral foundation for your skin tone. Customers ask about this quite a lot so we thought we’d share some hints and tips with you to help you achieve your desired look.

The best starting point is to look at your skin in natural daylight. If you have slight pink tones, then your natural colouring is cool. If you look peachier, your undertones are more likely to be warm, and yellow undertones usually apply to olive skin. If none of these are particularly obvious, then the neutral tone shades will suit you better.

Another good tip is to look at the inside of your wrists. If your veins show a blue tinge, then you’re more likely to have cool colouring. If they look green(ish) then warm tones will probably suit you better. Again, if you’re not obviously either one, then try the neutral tones.

Try our mineral foundation samples to test the shades before you invest in the full size one. We’d recommend ordering perhaps 2 or 3 samples. You can even mix our mineral foundations to create your own personal colour. This works particularly well if you’re in between shades. This is quite common as the seasons change.

Test the shades along your jawline, as it’s important that your foundation blends seamlessly from your face to neck with no obvious colour change. The right shade should almost disappear into your skin – making it look like your own natural skin but even more gorgeous!

If a shade looks a bit ashy, then it’s too pale for you. If it looks orange – even a tiny bit – then it’s too dark.

It’s also possible to tone down your natural undertones by choosing foundation that’s a shade away from your natural colouring. For example, to tone down pinkness, choose a neutral or warm shade and if your skin tone is too yellow or sallow, try a neutral or cool shade to brighten it up.

Finally, build up the coverage in several light layers to achieve the look of natural, flawless skin. After all, that’s what we all want isn’t it?

16 Responses to “Back to basics: Choosing your mineral foundation”

  1. Francesca Says:

    I think your foundations are great but I haven’t still found my right shade (or I think so).
    So I write here hoping to find your expert help:
    I can’t understand my undertone because at the daylight my skin is pale – not pink neither yellow; my veins wrist are blue and green (!).
    I’m fair with some redness on my cheek (due to acne) with dark hair.
    So I’ve bought a lot of samples, but:
    – Candy Cane makes my face too pink
    – In the Buff is a bit darker and yellow
    – Warm Peach is a bit darker
    – Popcorn and Popsicle are obviously too dark (but I want to try them).
    I’m now using Blondie (I’ve bought the full size) but I’m not sure it’s the right shade for me… Sometimes it’s brighter others dark others is perfect.
    Can you suggest me other shades or how can I use as best I can the foundations I have?
    Thanks a lot!


  2. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Francesca,
    Thanks for your question, your skin tone would be best described as balanced or neutral, where you have no warm or cool tones.
    We would not recommend the Popcorn or Popsicle as they will both be too dark for you; instead we recommend a sample of Barely Buff which is one shade darker than Blondie and one shade lighter than In the Buff, with balanced undertones.
    Remember that you can also mix shades together to achieve your own customised shade.
    You may also like to try our Blush Away colour corrector underneath your foundation to help disguise the redness on your cheeks.
    We hope this helps.
    Lily Lolo x

  3. Francesca Says:

    Thank you so much for your tips!!!
    Well then, I’ll try Barely Buff and Blush Away.
    I forgot to say I had mixed different shades but I’ve been not satisfied.
    Thank you for your wonderful work!!


  4. Maria Says:


    Is there a list somewhere of which shades are cool,which are neutral and which are warm?



  5. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Maria

    Thanks for your post

    You can find a chart to help find your perfect foundation match with details on which shades are cool, warm or neutral at the following link,

    We’d be happy to help further with any shade advice that you may need

    Kind Regards
    Lily Lolo x

  6. Elin Says:

    Hi, I need some help in choosing the right shade. Right now I’m using Barely Buff but it looks slightly orange in my face and my neck looks lighter. Should I try Candy Cane because it’s cooler or Blondie which is lighter? I have blue and purple veins. I’m pale but I’m a bit red on my nose and chin and I easily get flushed.

    Which shade should I choose?



  7. Sophie Says:

    I’m really interested in your make up however I’m a student and quite hesitant to buy a full pot online with the risk of the wrong shade! I was looking for your tester pots which I see lot of people on the web have bought for £1.49 but I can’t find them anywhere! I saw your starter collection but I see it isn’t customisable! I’d love to try a lot of things from lily lolo but I’d love to get samples first as the main thing I struggle with foundations is colour.
    Do you still have tester pots for sale?

    Sophie x

  8. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Sophie,
    Thanks for your message.
    Yes we do have sample sizes available of the foundations. On the foundation page if you select the shade you would like to try, underneath there is an option to select size, if you click the sample size option and then add to the shopping bag. Samples are £1.49 plus p+p. Let us know if you would like any help choosing your shade?
    Kind regards,
    Lily Lolo x

  9. Rita Says:


    I am interested in purchasing the right shade of foundation and am hesitating a lot. I am definitely warm with what I believe are yellow undertones, yet you can’t describe me as olive skinned. My veins are greenish. I am North-African with a medium (neither light nor dark) complexion with chocolate brown hair and dark eyes. I tan easily without ever going red. I was about to choose the Saffron foundation for this summer and wanted to know your opinion.

    Another question I have is related to lipsticks. My lips have a very strong pigmentation… Most pinks will turn peachy-orange, and most nudes will turn darker which makes it very difficult for me to order without trying. Any suggestions?


  10. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Rita,

    Have a look at our foundation guide which might help; From your description we would recommend you try Butterscotch, Coffee Bean and Saffron. You can buy samples for £1.49 plus p+p.

    Can we ask what lipstick colours you are looking at and we may be able to advise on the colour/texture.

    Kind regards,

    Lily Lolo x

  11. Rita Says:

    Thank you so much, I have just received the Saffron foundation and it looks good if not a touch too dark – yellowish. I would probably need something slightly lighter, which one would you recommend between Butterscotch and Coffee Bean?

    As for lipstick colors, I like natural shades for the day and Terracotta reds for special occasions.

    Thank you in advance

  12. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Rita,
    You could try samples of Butterscotch or Warm Honey to see if these are any better. Don’t forget that you can mix 2 shades together to get the correct colour.
    For your lipstick, Rose Gold has a hint of terracotta and Intense Crush is a nice natural shade. French Flirt is a nice warm red for special occasions.
    We hope this helps.
    Lily Lolo x

  13. Maria Says:

    Hi I have a really red face and some broken veins on my face don’t wear make up as a rule would like to cover this up have really dark hair have looked at my veins they are blue would be grateful if you could advise me of what make up ii would need to order from you Thanks

  14. Lily Lolo Says:

    We would recommend our Blush Away Corrector that conceals blemishes and neutralises redness, to be applied under our Mineral Foundation. You mentioned that you have blue veins so you could try cool shades like Candy Cane (light), Popsicle (light-medium) or Cool Caramel (medium) or if you wanted a more neutral shade we’d suggest looking at Blondie (light), Barely Buff (light), In The Buff (light-medium) or Cookie (medium). The foundations can be purchased in a sample size for £1.49 each + p&p on our website, we’d advise choosing from the above shades depending on your skin tone, depth of colour and deciding which you think would be closest and then trying one shade lighter and one shade darker to ensure you get your perfect match, don’t forget you can mix shades too.
    We hope this helps
    Lily Lolo x

  15. Voula Says:

    Hello ! I absolutely love your foundation but I seem to have a problem picking the right shade . I have fair skin with yellow undertones , I currently use China Doll which looks a bit rosy and ashy so there is definitely a difference between my neck and face color . I was thinking of Warm
    Peach or Blondie. Any ideas? Thank you in advance !

  16. Lily Lolo Says:

    Hi Voula,

    You could try mixing shades together to get your perfect match. We would suggest mixing China Doll and Porcelain with a fair shade that has yellow undertones, like Butterscotch.
    We hope this helps.
    Lily Lolo x

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