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Do you blend color corrector before foundation?


Whether to apply color corrector before or after foundation is a common question many have when doing their makeup routine. The short answer is yes, you should blend color corrector before foundation for the most effective color correction. Applying color corrector, which neutralizes discoloration, before foundation allows the corrector to do its job most effectively. Foundation applied on top seals in the color correction benefits.

What is Color Corrector and What Does it Do?

Color corrector, also known as color correcting concealer, is a makeup product used to neutralize discoloration on the skin. It comes in colors that counteract specific types of discoloration:

  • Green neutralizes redness from acne, rosacea, irritation
  • Yellow/orange neutralizes purple/blue under eye circles
  • Peach neutralizes dark spots and hyperpigmentation
  • Red/pink brightens dull skin and neutralizes sallowness

When color corrector is blended onto discolored areas of the skin, it cancels out the discoloration so those areas appear more uniform with the rest of the complexion. This creates a flawless, even canvas before foundation is applied.

Why Apply Color Corrector Before Foundation

There are a few key reasons why color corrector should be applied before foundation rather than after:

1. Maximize Color Neutralizing Effects

Applying color corrector directly on the discolored areas allows the pigments to fully neutralize the discoloration. If foundation is applied first, the corrector will not make direct contact with the discoloration, reducing its neutralizing effects.

2. Prevent Disturbing Corrected Areas

Once color corrector has been blended in, applying foundation on top can shift or wipe away the corrected coverage. Applying foundation first runs the risk of disturbing the color corrected areas.

3. Avoid Mismatched Colors

If color corrector is applied after foundation, there is a higher chance of the two products not matching well. The foundation shade could potentially clash with the color corrector tone. Applying corrector first ensures it is matched to your natural skintone.

4. Minimize Product Usage

Because the color corrector can work most effectively when applied before foundation, you may need less product. The coverage will be fuller with the corrector making direct contact on the discolored skin.

5. Prevent Oxidation

Some color correctors, particularly green correctors, can turn a greyish hue when they oxidize and interact with air over time. Applying foundation on top creates a seal to minimize oxidation.

How to Apply Color Corrector

Follow these steps for seamlessly applying color corrector before foundation:

Step 1: Prep Skin

Start with a fresh, clean face. Make sure the skin is free of any makeup, oils or moisturizers so the corrector adheres well to the skin.

Step 2: Identify Discoloration

Look for any discolored areas of the skin, such as dark spots, redness, under eye circles, etc. Determine the color corrector needed to neutralize those areas.

Step 3: Dot On Corrector

Use a small brush or your ring finger to dot the color corrector directly onto the discolored areas. Start with thin layers, as too much product can make blending more difficult.

Step 4: Blend Thoroughly

Gently pat and smooth the corrector into the skin using a brush, sponge or fingertips. Blend the edges so there are no harsh lines.

Step 5: Let It Set

Give the color corrector 1-2 minutes to set into the skin before going in with foundation. Setting gives it time to neutralize discoloration.

Step 6: Apply Foundation

Smooth on your foundation formula as normal. The foundation will layer cleanly over the set corrector.

Tips for Seamless Application

Follow these tips when applying color corrector under foundation:

  • Use thin layers of corrector so it does not feel heavy or look cakey under foundation.
  • Set corrector with powder before foundation to prevent slipping and sliding.
  • Choose corrector formulas that work for your skin type, like creams for dry skin or oil-free liquids for oily/combination skin.
  • Use a color corrector palette to customize correction rather than an all-over color correcting primer.
  • Look for “no makeup” makeup style color correctors that appear seamless.
  • Blend corrector with a damp sponge for a smooth, natural finish.
  • Use a color corrector shade slightly lighter than discolorations to lift and brighten.

What About Color Correcting Primers?

Color correcting primers even out skintone by neutralizing discoloration all over the face. While primers can be a shortcut, they generally provide lighter coverage than concentrated color correctors. Primers are better for minor discoloration while concentrated correctors address targeted concerns.

Using a primer and a concentrated corrector together is not recommended, as the products can end up mixing together into an unflattering muddy tone when layered.

If using a color correcting primer, apply it before foundation. Then only use concentrated correctors where needed like the under eyes or spots of stubborn redness or darkness.

Should You Use Color Corrector Every Day?

Color corrector is generally only needed for specific skin discoloration concerns like acne marks, dark circles or redness. If those issues are a daily occurrence for you, then daily use of color corrector may be warranted for seamless coverage.

However for minor discoloration, color correction is not essential on a daily basis. You can save it for days when you want your most flawless, photo-ready base.

Assess your skin each morning – if discoloration is significant, take the time to color correct. If your skin looks relatively clear, you may be able to get by with just foundation.

It’s always best to color correct only where needed rather than all over the face unnecessarily. Use a light hand and build up coverage in layers if required.

Pro Tips for Perfect Color Correction

Take your color correction skills to the next level with these pro makeup artist tips:

Prep With Eye Cream First

When correcting undereye circles, start by massaging in eyecare. This hydrates the delicate skin so the corrector glides on smoothly.

Use Two Concealers For Circles

Layer a peach corrector to neutralize dark circles, then follow with a brighter concealer at the inner corners to lift and highlight.

Mix Correctors For Custom Coverage

Correctors can be mixed together like green and yellow to address both redness and undereye circles in one step.

Follow With Powder

Set corrected areas with loose powder to lock in coverage. Translucent powder works for all skin tones.

Use Stippling Brush For Precision

A stippling brush offers more control than a sponge for seamless blending of concentrated correctors.

Color Corrector Use For Best Application Method
Green Redness Stippling brush
Yellow Purple under eye circles Fingertips
Peach Dark spots Concealer brush
Pink Dullness, sallowness Beauty sponge


Applying color corrector before foundation is an essential makeup technique for flawless looking skin. Corrector neutralizes discoloration most effectively when applied directly on the skin before foundation. Blend corrector thoroughly before foundation for smooth, creaseless coverage.

Use color correctors strategically where needed rather than all over the complexion. Follow with powder to set and seal in the coverage. With the right color correction products and techniques, you can achieve a perfectly even, radiant complexion!