Splurge or Save? The Smartest Beauty Buys
It's important to find the right shade and formula for your skin, but you can rack up quite a bill by trial and error with inexpensive brands. Instead, have a makeup consultant match the perfect foundation to your skin and allow you to test it at the counter before you buy. Your age and skin type may determine whether you need a creamy, sheer formula or one that offers more coverage. It's tough to tell which is which without trying them on. But do figure out what works: "If your skin doesn't look good," notes San Francisco makeup artist Hillary Clark, "nothing else will." Recommended product: Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation ($62, shop.nordstrom.com) is a makeup artists' favorite.
If you tend to use foundation sparingly (just around the nose and chin to reduce redness) and you know the undertones in your skin, you might consider a drugstore purchase.