brunette Girl in Morning Sunlight Outdoors
Image: Shutterstock/MillaF

Make Any Foundation Work For Pale Skin: 2 Minutes, $10

I’m pale. Really, really pale. Like, lighter than every ginger I’ve ever met. So I was disappointed (but not necessarily surprised) to find that the new Mac Pro Longwear Foundation in NC15 was too dark for me.

Naturally, I scoured the internet for solutions. After days of experimentation and lots of wasted foundation, I’m ready to give you the perfect 2-minute makeup hack to make any foundation work for pale skin. The best part? It’s only $10.

All you need is Manic Panic Dreamtone in the shade Vampire White. Yes, that’s really what it’s called. You can find it on Amazon for $10, which is even less than the $11.50 listed on Manic Panic’s site.

Don’t freak out—I’m not going to make you replace your high end products with glorified white out. (Although if you’re planning ahead for Halloween, I’d totally recommend this as a spooky base color.) Here’s what you need to do to make any foundation work for pale skin:

  1. Grab a palette, smooth surface, paper plate, or whatever you have on hand.
  2. Take a few pumps of your too-dark foundation and mix in just a touch of the Manic Panic (seriously, a little goes a long way).
  3. Continually test on your face for a color match. Keep adding Manic Panic until you reach your desired shade of pale.

That’s it! There are tons of more expensive foundation lighteners on the market right now (Make Up For Ever’s Chromatic Mix and The Body Shop’s Shade Adjusting Drops), but they can cost nearly double what Manic Panic does. In my opinion, they also don’t add to the coverage of your makeup in the same way.

So do yourself a favor. Before returning yet another foundation that’ll probably match you in the summer, try mixing in a few drops of Manic Panic. You won’t be disappointed.