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Summer Skin – Make your Own Tinted Moisturizers

Summer Skin Series: Tinted Moisturizers

Tinted Moistrizers

tinted moisturizers

During the warm summer months, most of us really like to pare down our makeup routine. I am no exception to this! I love to wear less, spend less time, and just keep it feeling fresh. Sometimes, barefaced is the only way to go, but most often, I need a little bit of coverage for my skin. I also do tend to get shiny throughout the day, so a bit of oil control never hurts.

I usually use my minerals, in warm 4 ( sometimes 5 in summer) and just use it in powdered form, because oily skins can benefit from the oil absorption inherent in many powdered makeups. But, a tinted moisturizer is another great option, for that lightweight coverage AND moisture retention for your skin. Bam! Double duty, in one step.

Now, no need to run out and start buying. First, let’s see if you can work with what you already own. (saves money like a champ!) Many tinted moisturizers, are just that, a moisturizer with foundation pigments added. You can test out your own products at home. You already know, or should know, that the colors, tones, textures, and hydration levels, work for you, so this should be easy peasy. You just now, have to make sure the formulas are compatible. Typically, if they were not, you’d already know, because your foundation would be sliding off your face every day. ( I bet there are a few AHA! faces going on after reading this statement).

Sheer, pretty, Tinted Moisturizer

Sheer, pretty, Tinted Moisturizer

But, let’s test, and see. The rule of thumb is, “like goes with like”. Meaning, if you have a cream foundation, it will pair best with a cream moisturizer. However, as a pro makeup artist, I have seen, and participated, in exceptions to this rule. (rebel) I have seen silicone based foundation mix well with a cream based moisturizer, water based foundation mix with a cream based foundation, etc. Typically, because most moisturizers are some form of emulsion, either oil in water, or water in oil. They, usually, all contain water as well as oils and waxes, and so does a typical liquid foundation. Cream foundations usually are a wax/oil emulsion. (though, obviously not all). Basically, what I’m saying is, your chances of success here, are quite high.

Silicone is the factor that can throw a monkey wrench in the mix.  For example, an oil free, water based moisturizer, rarely will pair well with a silicone based foundation, but, like I said, there are exceptions to all of this. Ingredients labels are only one small slice of the formulation pie.


To test if your chosen products will work, simply mix them. For light coverage, try a teaspoon ( or nickel sized dollop) of moisturizer, and about an 1/8th of a teaspoon ( or pea sized) amount of your foundation. Put them both in the palm, or back, of your clean, non dominant hand, and mix. If they become a smooth, uniformly colored mixture, voila’ success! Now apply evenly to your skin. For slightly better coverage, you can up the amounts of foundation.  I do this with my powdered minerals with much success. If the mixture is not becoming smooth and uniform, if they “pill” or ball up, or just won’t seem to mix, then your two products are not compatible, you may want to try swapping out one, or the other. It also means they are not compaitble, unmixed on your face as well, so you’re going to need to swap out one.

2 products I can highly recommend, as they have been makeup artists’ staple (secret) for years, are now available at Target, of all places! They are moisturizers by a French company called, Embryolisse. I carry these in my own pro kit. Lait Creme, for standard moisture, and Hydra-Mat is fantastic for oily skin types. I use these straight, to cut foundations, or to create a tinted moisturizer.












If you use a silicone based foundation, and are not having success mixing, try looking for a moisturizer that also contains silicone. Though, I have successfully used the Lait Creme, with a silicone based liquid foundation before. I am also not a huge fan of layering too many silicone products over each other. I find they have a greater tendency to breakup on the skin when layered, especially, if using more than two silicone based products.

There are, of course, a 100 different premade tinted moisturizers on the market, some good, some myeh, some not so great. A lot of women use tinted moisturizers on a daily basis, year round. Bobbi Brown is a favorite I hear often, as is Nars, and Laura Mercier, but seriously, before you shell out the cash, try just mixing your own. You may be totally surprised!

I’d really love to hear feedback from anyone who tries this! Let me know what products you mixed, and how it worked for you!


This week’s sample (included in every full sized order) is Stunning, a gorgeous color shifting shadow, One of my personal favorites!




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