When you discover the perfect shade of complexion-correcting foundation, it transforms your skin from less-than-stellar to stunning in mere seconds. Now the tricky part—finding that one-in-a-million hue. This frustrating (and expensive!) endeavor can seem more treacherous than ending up on Taylor Swift’s ever-growing list of ex-flames.

To take the sting out of this beauty headache, we called in celebrity makeup artist Alison Raffaele. Here, the former-Bobbi Brown educator guides Birchbox staffer Juliette through the process of selecting and applying foundation, with plenty of helpful insider tips along the way. Better yet, some lucky Birchbox subscribers will score a sample of Alison’s silky Reality Base Foundation in their October Birchboxes!

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