The Awkward Girl’s Guide to Fair Skin
When you have fair skin you get used to a lot of things.
Never being able to find a foundation that’s pale enough. Having to spend an hour slathering yourself in sunscreen before you leave the house, because you’re scared of burning your fair skin. Constantly being asked why you don’t have a suntan when you’ve been on vacation – and being told you’d look “healthier” with one.
Well, there’s no such thing as a “healthy” suntan, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with having fair skin, either. Sure, pale skin requires a little bit more maintenance and it can be harder to find products that work for it, but it makes me so sad when I hear people say that someone with fair skin “needs to get a tan”. No, they don’t: no one should ever feel like they need to try to change their natural skin colour in order to meet someone else’s beauty standards, and after years of hating my freckles and trying every brand of fake tan known to woman, only to end up looking like a slice of streaky bacon and smelling like feet (Why does fake tan always smell like feet?!) I’ve finally learned to just embrace my fair skin. Well, rather that than end up burning it (or worse) in the pursuit of a skin colour I’ll never have, after all.
On this page you’ll find links to some of the articles I’ve written on products for pale skin, from foundation and concealer to sunscreen and skincare. There’s aren’t a huge amount of them right now, but I’m hoping to build this page into a resource for people with fair skin everywhere, so please check back soon, or bookmark my Products for Pale skin page!
But first things first…
There is absolutely nothing wrong with having fair skin. Nothing. It absolutely infuriates me when I hear people say someone “needs to get a tan”, or that they look “sooooo unhealthy!” just because they happen to be pale. Pale skin IS healthy. For some of us, it’s just how our skin is supposed to look – and to be totally honest, anyone who wants to just that someone’s natural skin colour is “ugly” or should be changed really needs to have a long, hard look at themselves.
That’s why I wrote this post:
PALE AND PROUD : why I won’t be getting a suntan, no matter how much you tell me I “need” one.
Since I wrote that post, I’ve had quite a few emails from people – many of them young – telling me how hard they’ve found it to deal with people’s reactions to their pale skin, and how ashamed they are of their natural skin colour. It honestly breaks my heart to read things like that, and to hear that people are actually being bullied because of their skin colour: crazy, huh? If you’re one of those people, take a look at the post above, and don’t ever let anyone tell you to change the colour of your skin: there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. Here’s an article I wrote in response to one of those reader questions:
And with that little rant out of the way, here’s some more specific advice for fair-skinned people…
Foundation for Pale Skin
One of the few benefits of having very fair skin is that you never have to wonder which foundation shade to try: it’s ALWAYS the palest one available… and if that does’t work, well, too bad, right? Finding foundation that’s pale enough is an eternal struggle for many people with fair skin, so in this post, I round up all of the foundations I’ve tried, and rate them according to how suitable they are for fair skin: there’s also tons of advice in the comments of each review, from pale-skinned readers with their own suggestions. Here, meanwhile, are some more foundation reviews that I haven’t had time to add to the roundup yet:
Protecting Pale Skin
Sunscreen is absolutely essential for people with fair skin, and I rarely leave home without it. Right now I’m on a mission to find a non-greasy, high SPF sunscreen, which doesn’t stain my clothes: although I’ve tried dozens, I’ve so far only written a couple of reviews, so keep an eye out for updates to this section!
Makeup for Fair Skin
Just a few of the products I’ve used and recommend for people with very pale skin:
Other articles on fair skin
When you have fair skin, it can be really hard to find products like foundation and concealer that are pale enough to match your skin colour, and even sunscreen often isn’t a high enough SPF to protect your delicate skin. Here are some other articles that might help: