Colour Correcting 101

Today, I wanted to briefly touch up on the basics of colour correcting. Colour correcting, when done right, can make your makeup application flawless, even, and photoshopped, however when done incorrectly can make you look, well.. terrible.


What is colour correcting?

Colour correcting basically cancels out the unwanted colour ( on your face), whether it’s the redness from a blemish or darkness under your eyes.

 The Colour Wheel

The Colour Wheel

To understand colour correcting properly and to do it well, you have to know, memorise and live by the colour wheel and understand the basics of colour theory.  I’m sure you have heard of it or seen it a few times already, but this is truly the fundamentals of properly colour correcting.

The colour that you want to cancel out can be neutralised by the opposite colour on the colour wheel. So, green cancels out red, yellow cancels out purple etc.  






Types of Colour Correcting

I’ve grouped the colours by wanted effect rather than the colour corrector shades as the colours you use for colour correcting will mainly depend on what skin tone you have.


Neutralise Under Eye Circles / Dark Spots

Pink :: For those with a light skin tone (and cooler undertone) can correct with a pink or salmon corrector because their darkness isn’t as “blue/purple” in essence as those with a deeper complexion.  

Orange :: An orange corrector is better for deeper skin tones as their undereye circles tend to be a lot “bluer” than those with a lighter skin tone.


Radiance and Luminosity

Purple / Lavender :: Purple cancels out yellow, so for medium to deeper skin tones (or warm undertone), use a purple corrector

Blue :: If you have a much more paler skin, blue is better to correct with if you want more of a glow.



Caramel :: Ashiness is mostly a concern for those with a medium to deep complexion, so the best way to correct this in your skin is to use a caramel coloured corrector.


Even out redness

Green :: For those red blemishes or people that have rosacea use a green corrector.



When to use a colour corrector?

If you don’t really apply makeup too often or don’t need much correcting then definitely don’t invest in a colour correcting palette or shade, because in a way it’s an unnecessary step in your day to day life.

If you do happen to have a problem with a certain part of your face that you want to make flawless on a night out for example then by all means invest in a colour correcting palette.

Brands are also coming out with primers that have colour correcting qualities in them so if you suffer from a lot dullness or overall redness that you wish to correct slightly on a daily basis, then that would probably be the better option for you.

For everyday use, Stila has a great serum with colour correcting qualities in them. It’s definitely on the pricier side (at US$36 for 30 ml) but if you do want a simple way to neutralise your skin and can afford it then give this one a try.




How to apply a colour corrector?


Before foundation and concealer

If you’re buying a colour corrector that is not infused in the primer or your serum then you also have to apply the corrector before foundation and concealer so that it can neutralises your skin tone prior to your foundation and concealer application. Don’t swipe your foundation if you have applied a colour corrector as that will move around the product to unwanted areas that you don’t want to correct! So pat, pat, pat that foundation in... 


Less is More

Definitely don’t overdo it with the colour corrector because if you apply too much (and in the wrong shade) you can actually see the colour correcting shade through your foundation


Play Around

If you’re new to colour correcting and want to give it a go, buy a drugstore palette with multiple shades in them. This way, you can play around with the shades to see what will truly correct the unwanted colour for your skin tone as it takes a lot of practice and understanding before it can be done flawlessly.