How To Lighten Foundation When Too Dark

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If you end up with a darker tone after applying your foundation, you are probably using one too dark for your skin complexion. What do you need to do; lighten it. You need to learn how to lighten your foundation in such cases to create a natural blend.

It’s easier said than done getting the perfect foundation shade for your skin, especially when you buy online than in a store under an attendant’s guide (you could still get the wrong one).

It’s a bummer when such happens. But it’s better to find a solution than stick to what you have. You can’t use a darker color for your skin- it screams amateur, and you would not like the outcome if you use something darker.

To make your makeup look flawless, learning how to lighten foundation is the only solution to this. This article will guide you on quick tricks you can use to lighten foundation. Keep reading.

How to lighten foundation

1. Mix and match

If you still have a little or enough bottle of foundation you previously used and loved, you can mix foundations together to get the color or right shade meant for you.

You can also grab that very light foundation you bought once but kept deep in the corner of your desk drawer.  

What you need is a little lighter tint than the color before. So pour out your dark foundation in a bowl, a cap, or mixing paper. Then add the lighter foundation in bits. Mix until you have the lighter shade you want.

You can do this every time you use it or just mix the whole bottle and save yourself the trouble. It all depends on you.

2. Mix with a moisturizer

Moisturizer is another confirmed helper when you have a dark foundation. The light texture of a moisturizer lightens the foundation color and also moisturizes your skin.

All you have to do is get enough foundation in a mixing bowl or at the back of your hand. Add a dash of moisturizer to it, then mix. If the foundation color lightens, check to see if it matches your skin.

However, if it doesn’t, keep adding moisturizer until you get the shade that blends with your skin.

3. Use concealer

A concealer naturally helps to lighten and highlight dark areas of the face, so you will need to be careful when using a concealer unless it comes out with a patched finish with visible spots.

To use concealer with a dark foundation, apply the concealer first to dark spots, then blend. Sparingly apply the dark foundation, especially around your dark spots. Blend the makeup, and again, layer concealer around the under eyes for a brighter color.

A safer measure is to mix a bit of foundation and concealer if they have the same consistency and composition, e.g., matte or glossy finish. 

4. Use a color corrector

Apply a color corrector before your foundation to give it a bit of an undertone and more color. It provides the needed color to the specific areas of your face that need a lighter shade and illuminating.

5. Use bronzer

A foundation can work as a multifunctional tool if you let it. While a foundation can be too dark for full coverage, you can use it as a bronzer to make your cheeks more prominent. This also helps create an illusion of your features.

6. Use a white setting powder

A setting powder helps highlight your makeup. And the best way to lighten a dark foundation is to use a light finishing powder.

A white setting powder works best. All you have to do is apply the foundation, then add the setting powder to diffuse the dark color and give you a lighter shade.

7. Try a primer

Dilute your primer with a dark foundation if you want to lighten it. A primer will reduce its texture while still giving you the same perfect dewy finish.

The primer has the same effect as a moisturizer. Moreover, it acts as a long-lasting agent for your foundation.

8. Use a wet sponge

A wet sponge or beauty blender will soften the foundation’s dark shade when blending on your face. Additionally, it helps to spread evenly on your face without leaving creases or cracks.

However, use lightly when applying the foundation on your face with a wet sponge. Over-layering can highlight the dark foundation more.

9. Contour with it

Just like a bronzer, use your dark foundation as a contour tool to highlight your skin. A foundation used for contouring creates a dewy, natural finish. This doesn’t lighten the foundation, however, it provides an alternative use for your foundation.

Apply the foundation on your cheekbones, nose sides, temples, and jawline to create the illusion of a sculpted face.

10. Use in bits

Being light-handed when applying your dark foundation can give you the light or perfect shade you want. While this will not give you full coverage, it does help you conserve the foundation.

You can also opt for it when your skin usually tans and darkens- summer. Here you can apply the darker foundation and get the coverage you want.

How do you know foundation is too dark?

The shade of your face differs from the rest of your body.

This is none of the most evident signs that you are using a dark foundation not meant for you. Your complexion comes out tanned than blended.

Furthermore, your makeup will have a dark undertone that doesn’t really highlight your face in the right places. While this doesn’t really matter, it may make you look gloomy.


how to lighten foundation

Is it necessary to lighten darker foundation?

Yes, it is.

You need to lighten a foundation that is too dark to enhance the flawless look if your makeup.

Will dark foundation make your face look different?

Yes, it will.

When you use a dark foundation, your face may change slightly. The foundation will hide the features you want to highlight. Therefore, use shades meant for your skin.

Can you lighten foundation that turned dark?

Yes, you can.

You can often find perfect shades turning dark after a while. They have most likely oxidized. While this doesn’t mean they have gone bad, you can experience breakouts due to this. So use it with caution.

Should you buy a dark or light foundation?

Go for a lighter shade.

A lighter shade can blend more easily with your face, even on medium coverage, than a dark foundation. Additionally, your face will not be too far off from your body.


If you bought a foundation that is too dark, you can make it flexible by lightening it. You can either use your concealer to blend it, mix it with a moisturizer or primer, or use a white setting powder to balance the color.

And you can take unconventional routes like using it to contour or as a bronzer to utilize the dark shade.

You do not need to discard or forget the foundation in a corner; it still has its uses. Nonetheless, buying the perfect shade is best, but knowing this trick of lightening foundation will come in handy once in a while.

Thanks for reading.

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