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9 Celebrity Makeup Artists Share Their Favorite Foundation Formulas

by Martha Adams

It doesn't matter if you're more of a barely-there beauty girl or if an over-the-top makeup routine, complete with a bright lip and full smoky eye is more your speed – either way, you'll need the best foundation out there for a perfect base. And who better to consult than the pro makeup artists who've tested out every foundation on the market? Working with celebrities like Gigi Hadid to the girls of Little Mix , they've cracked the secret code for mastering a flawless face that will stand up to hours-long red carpet events and the heavy lights of onstage performances. See which foundations the industry's best are working with, then memorize their tips for getting it right every time.

1. The Artist: Allan Avendaño

The Clients: Zendaya, Sarah Hyland, Olivia Holt

The Foundation: NARS Sheer Glow Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of NARS

"It leaves a natural, satin finish on the skin that's not too dewy or too matte. I've found it to work well on all skin types, and my clients have found it very comfortable to wear for long periods of time. It's quite a versatile foundation. I would always start with a good moisturizer before you apply it; [then] for a more sheer application, warm it up with your fingers, blending it into your face for a fresh-faced, effortless finish. For medium coverage, I recommend using a Beautyblender ; [that way] you can also build coverage in certain areas. For maximum coverage, applying it with a foundation brush or dense buffing brush is the trick."

2. The Artist: Vincent Oquendo

The Clients: Bella Hadid, Gigi Hadid, Suki Waterhouse

The Foundation: NARS Sheer Glow Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of NARS

"NARS Sheer Glow is my favorite, because it can be super sheer but it's buildable [enough] to provide coverage for blemishes and discoloration. It works on every skin type and they have an excellent range of colors that work from the fairest to deepest skin tones. I actually love to apply it with a fluffy blush brush because it gives the skin a beautiful airbrushed look without looking heavy or caked on."

3. The Artist: Adam Burrell

The Clients: Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Perrie Edwards (aka Little Mix)

The Foundation: Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of Giorgio Armani

"Whenever I put it on a client they comment on how good it makes their skin look. I love how buildable the coverage is, [and] I find that it's great for all skin types. It blurs out pores, it's hydrating, and it stays put. This foundation is perfect for those wanting a sheen to their skin, [because] it's moisturizing without being too oily, and [it has] a satin finish so it doesn't look too matte either. [To apply], it's all about the buffing technique. Buff this foundation into the skin with a large fluffy brush – I use the Bobbi Brown Face Blender Brush ."

4. The Artist: Benjamin Puckey

The Clients: Gigi Hadid, Hailey Baldwin, Suki Waterhouse

The Foundation: Dior Diorskin Nude Skin-Glowing Makeup

Photo: Courtesy of Dior

"Right now I'm obsessed with the Diorskin Nude Skin-Glowing Makeup. It feels very lightweight and covers invisibly, leaving your skin looking naturally flawless. I've found that it works on all skin types, [but] on oily skin I'll use a primer as a base and on dry skin I'll use a facial oil as a base. I love applying it with my black Beautyblender sponge for a seamless finish."

5. The Artist: Katie Jane Hughes

The Clients: Olivia Culpo, Whitney Port, Chloe Norgaard

The Foundation: Laneige BB Cushion

Photo: Courtesy of Laneige

"It has a sheer buildable formula with a dewy finish, so the natural radiance of your skin still shines through. It works well on all skin types, [but] if you have oily skin, I would suggest using a primer so the coverage lasts all day. [Even though] the Laneige comes with a sponge applicator, I prefer applying it with a buffing brush for natural coverage."

6. The Artist: Nick Barose

The Clients: Lupita Nyong'o, Emma Roberts, Kate Mara

The Foundation: Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of Koh Gen Do

"I love Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation. It's a medium coverage, but you can thin it down by using [a] damp Beautyblender , or layer it for more coverage. It really looks like skin, because it has luminosity to it, thanks to what they call "water glow," that mimics skin's natural radiance – nothing too shimmery or shiny looking, [it] just looks like skin. I find it even wears well on oily skin, too...even though it has the water glow in it, it doesn't add shine."

7. The Artist: Patrick Ta

The Clients: Shay Mitchell, Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner

The Foundation: Giorgio Armani Designer Lift Smoothing Firming Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of Giorgio Armani

"I always turn to Armani Designer Lift because it gives the coverage that I like, but it melts into the skin. I find this foundation works best on dry to normal skin. Depending on the coverage that I am trying to achieve, I use my fingers for a natural look to really spread and melt the foundation onto the skin. For medium coverage, I use a Beautyblender to push the foundation into the skin and for full coverage, I use a flat brush to apply the foundation, [going back in] with the Beautyblender to push the foundation into the skin."

8. The Artist: Suzy Gerstein

The Clients: Leighton Meester, Camilla Belle, Sky Ferreira

The Foundation: Vapour Beauty Atmosphere Soft Focus Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of Vapor Organic Beauty

"Lately I have been loving Vapour Atmosphere Soft Focus Foundation. [It] comes in a wide range of shades for many skin tones and undertones, and it gives the skin a beautifully radiant, sort of airbrushed quality. I like the liquid version for dry to combination skin and the stick version for more oily complexions and for covering blemishes. I have really sensitive skin, and neither breaks me out. This formula is very easy to manipulate, so I usually just apply a couple of pumps over my face oil or moisturizer with my fingertips. I blend it right in with either my fingers, a stippling brush if I want a more flawless finish or a Beautyblender sponge if I'm going for more sheer coverage."

9. The Artist: Troy Surratt

The Clients: Adele, Uma Thurman, Charlize Theron

The Foundation: YSL Le Teint Touche Éclat Illuminating Foundation

Photo: Courtesy of YSL

"I just experienced the new YSL Touche Éclat and I love it! It's lightweight on skin, yet has the perfect amount of coverage. It gives a glowing, skin-perfecting effect that looks incredibly realistic. [It's] great for perfecting [skin's] texture and evening out the complexion, lending clarity to discoloration. The formula is also pigmented enough to effectively hide/conceal breakouts. It would be beautiful on all skin types because of its dewy look, [but] those with excessively oily skin may choose to use a dusting of mattifying powder on their t-zone. I like to apply [it] using a brush like Shiseido 's and starting in the center of the face, where discoloration and redness most often occur. I burnish it on the nose, around the nostrils and at the tip of the chin, blending outward as needed. I also apply a bit on the forehead, the cheeks and the planes of the face to even out and perfect the tone of the skin. I always bounce over the foundation with a damp Beautyblender , using a stippling motion because it leaves the optimal amount of foundation on the skin while lifting off any excess [foundation].

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Photo Credit: Getty Images

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