March 1,
Model holding Double Wear Stay In Place Foundation

Too light? Too deep? Wrong undertone? If you’ve ever shopped for foundation online, you’ll know just how tricky it can be. Fortunately, we’ve got three simple tips to make your experience easier, so you can work out how to find the right foundation shade for you.

What foundation shade am I?

The very first step in finding the perfect foundation colour match is identifying your skin tone. You may be fair, light, medium, deep, or a combination, such as light-medium or medium-deep. Understanding your skin tone makes it much easier to find the right foundation shade.


  • Pull your hair back if possible, or avoid hair over your face
  • Look at your skin without makeup in natural light (morning is best)
  • Turn off any artificial lighting in your room, or head outside with a compact
  • Send a selfie to a friend and ask their opinion

Determine your undertone:

While skin tone refers to skin colour, undertone refers to the subtle natural shade below the surface of your skin. You can have a cool, warm or neutral undertone, no matter how fair or melanin-rich your skin is. Identifying your undertone can be tricky, but there are some tried and trusted methods out there.

Cool: If you have this undertone, you'll notice rosy or pink tones in your skin.
Warm: If you have warm skin, it will have a natural golden tint.
Neutral: Your skin isn't especially pink or golden. If you find it hard to tell, you may very well be neutral.

Delve into your wardrobe

Did you know your clothes can help you find your foundation shade? Inside your wardrobe is the key to understanding your undertone. If you look your best in bright white, you’re likely cool. If you feel better in off-white, you’re likely warm. If you can carry off anything, you may very well be neutral.

Look at your jewellery

Another easy way to identify your undertone is to look at your jewellery. Silver, platinum and white gold make cool skin glow, while warm skin lights up in yellow and rose gold. If you suit all jewellery hues, that’s another sign you’re neutral.

Use our Virtual Try-On Tool

The easiest way to find your foundation colour match? Our instant Virtual Try-On Tool. Perfect for foundations with a wide shade range (looking at you, Double Wear), this handy foundation shade finder instantly analyses your skin tone and undertone to find your ideal shade. Simply take a selfie and our 'Find My Foundation Shade' tool will search through all Estée Lauder foundation shades to find the one for you.

Still not sure? Visit your nearest Estée Lauder counter for complimentary shade-matching with our expert Beauty Advisors.