How to Fix Cakey Foundation using Airbrush Makeup
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  • Post published:June 4, 2020

What is a makeup enthusiast’s worst nightmare?

Cakey foundation.

You are an artist and the foundation is the canvas on which you ‘paint’ your art. Artists need a smooth canvas to portray their art, in the same way you also need a smooth base to showcase your skill at its utmost glory. That is not possible with an uneven blotchy foundation. 

It is a common belief that makeup cracks when you put on too many products. It is true to some extent. Over-layering, dry skin, enhanced pores, and fine lines are all the real culprits here. You can overcome this problem by using products incorrect quantities with the right techniques. One such technique for the solution to the cakey makeup foundation is airbrush makeup. 

In this article, we will tell you how to fix a cakey foundation with airbrush makeup. It also contains a brief rundown of some of the best airbrush makeup kits currently available on the market. If you are a beginner who has just been introduced to the technique, you will greatly benefit from reading it till the end. So without further ado, let’s begin. 

What is airbrush makeup and how does it fix cakey foundation? 

Airbrushing is a makeup technique that involves spraying makeup directly on the skin instead of using sponges, blenders, brushes or any other conventional methods. It consists of a compressor that generates controllable yet even airflow, a medical-grade hose that supplies the airflow to a metal trigger-actioned gun better known as airbrush wand. The wand is loaded with special foundation cartridges. The compressed air converts the foundation into mist that is gently sprayed across your skin for an even application and smooth finish hence, a less cakey appearance. 

Airbrush makeup is sold as complete systems called starter kits. Depending upon the manufacturer, they can cost anywhere between $100 to $500. Each kit contains two to three different shades of foundations, an air pump, and an airbrush wand. You can also get refills sold separately each costing around $20 to $45 for a single shade.

Traditional makeup depends on sponges, brushes, or in some cases fingertips blending. Cakey makeup is also a result of uneven blending by these tools. Even when you blend the foundation properly, it still fails to deliver the flawless look that everyone desires. Airbrush makeup is very useful for overcoming the common problem of a cakey foundation. You will never have to worry about the quantity of product you use, blending, as well as topping it with lots of powder to set it. Hence, you can achieve the desired high-fashion look without putting in too much effort.

How to use airbrush makeup to fix cakey foundation? 

Airbrush makeup operates on the same idea as a spray paint can. Compressed air converts the foundation into mist which is then sprayed on the skin with the wand. However, instead of gaseous chemicals, the propellant is an electric pump. Now that you understand how it works, let’s delve into the procedure of using one to fix a cakey foundation.

If you have been watching videos and tutorials regarding airbrush makeup, you may have thought that its application is a daunting task. Let us assure you that it is actually not that difficult. But because of the precision, it will take some serious practice to achieve the flawless, non-cakey, HD ready look. 

  1. Choose the right shade

Choosing the right shade for your skin is the most important ritual of makeup. You want a natural finish without appearing cakey so you should choose the shade that is the closest to your skin tone. Unless you want to go a shade or two lighter or darker. With airbrush makeup, you don’t get the diverse range that is easily available in traditional makeup. But hey, who’s stopping you from playing? If you cannot find a shade suitable for yourself, you can always mix them together to create your perfect match. 

  1. Loading the airbrush wand

After choosing the right shade, fill the special compartment located on the top of your wand with it. Remember that every airbrush makeup kit only requires two to five drops of the specialized foundation. The more you put in, the fuller coverage you will get. 

  1. Placement of the airbrush wand

The distance at which you hold your airbrush applicator also determines the level of coverage you will get. It is recommended that you hold your wand at a distance of six to twelve inches away from your face. The closer the wand the more the coverage. The farther the wand the sheerer the coverage. 

  1. Application

Turn on the air pump and start applying your makeup with gentle circular movements while keeping the wand upright. It is important to keep up the circular motion because if you stop anywhere for a tad too long, you will get cakey blotches that are very unsightly. If you have a problem area, keep airbrushing over it in circular motions until you achieve the desired result. This circular motion is responsible for bringing out the ‘airbrushed to perfection’ look everybody is crazy about.

Do’s and don’ts of airbrush makeup to avoid cakey foundation

Applying your regular makeup on top of your airbrush makeup is usually okay unless you are going to use creamy products like contour, highlighter and blush. The creamy formula is very tricky to apply as it can push your base around creating dents and cakey blotches to ruin your flawless look. But if you have cream formulas for under-eye concealer and skin tone corrector, you can always apply them before your airbrush makeup. 

Applying your airbrush makeup with gentle circular strokes is also very important. If you stray on any one area for too long, you will get an uneven cakey look that is not appealing at all. To achieve the straight out of the magazine look, stick to the circular method of application.

Airbrushing is also a skill that requires serious practice to master. When you first start out, you will have immense difficulty and take a lot of time. But with consistent practice, you will understand what looks good on your skin and how to create different looks in a short period of time. In a nutshell, if you want to use airbrush makeup as a solution to cakey foundation, practice makes perfect. 

What are the benefits of using airbrush makeup? 

Airbrush makeup is a relatively new cosmetic technique. But because of its smooth and dewy finish, it has gained popularity in a small amount of time. Especially as a solution to the cakey makeup. From influencers to professional makeup artists, anybody you look at will be raving about it. Wondering why? Here are some benefits of using airbrush makeup. 

  • Longevity: Airbrush makeup can last up to 12 hours on average. Some top of the line products even lasts longer than that. If you are a person who has his hands full throughout the day without any time to spare for touch-ups, it is perfect. 
  • Coverage: One of the advantages of airbrush makeup is its light-weightiness. It offers you the freedom to create any look you desire. From a sheer application to a fuller coverage, anything is possible with a good airbrush.
  • Healthy and hygienic: Airbrushing is far more healthy and hygienic than traditional makeup. It does not require direct contact for application, unlike sponge and brushes that are a major cause of breakouts. Moreover, airbrush makeup only sits on top of your skin so it brings out the skin’s natural healthy glow without clogging your pores.
  • No powder: Unlike traditional makeup, airbrush makeup has a tendency to set itself without needing powders of any sort. The inadequate layering of powder also leads to cakey makeup. But with airbrush, you don’t have to worry as it completely ditches the use of powder. 
  • HD friendly: Time and again we have shied away from HD cameras because they can highlight every enlarged pore, blemish and imperfection of our skin. With airbrush makeup there is no need to worry. With its flawless application, it can easily cover up minor skin imperfections and make you HD camera ready. 

Our choice of 5 affordable yet awesome airbrush makeup kits to try

Airbrush makeup is not a secret anymore. It is a well known and highly appreciated trend. Its popularity has grown so much that high-end makeup brands are creating their own airbrush makeup kits. However, not all kits are created the same. A good airbrush kit is easy to use, offers full coverage, and is long-lasting. If you are looking to purchase a quality system, below is a detailed account of some of the best airbrush makeup starter kits that are currently available on the market. You can go through these and choose a suitable one for yourself.

Temptu Air Perfect Canvas Airbrush Starter Kit

Main features 

  • James Charles’ approved airbrush kit. 
  • Patented cordless design. 
  • All in one tool for perfect blending. 

This is the number one contender on our list of top airbrush makeup kits. It captured our attention when we saw the makeup guru James Charles using it. It also stands out to us for its portability and a number of setting options. It gives you the freedom to choose how much coverage you want. This is especially handy when you want to avoid a cakey makeup look. 


  • Cordless design offers complete freedom. 
  • Maximum coverage with minimum product. 
  • It offers multiple setting options.
  • Lightweight and portable. 


  • Beginners may find it difficult to use. 
  • Pods can leak if you are not careful. 

Luminess Air Basic Airbrush System

Main features 

  • This kit is a professional favorite. 
  • It is very precise. 
  • Comes with primer, foundation, blush and highlighter 

The Luminess Air Basic Airbrush System is the classic airbrush kit you may have watched professionals using everywhere. It is a great choice for people who have to wear makeup all day and resort to layering lots of makeup to make it last all day long without realizing that it ultimately leads to a cakey appearance. With this system, you will create a naturally flawless look that is waterproof, non-irritating, does not clog your pores and lasts longer than any traditional makeup. 


  • Produces excellent results. 
  • Simple and easy to use. 
  • Loading the product is very easy. 
  • There is no sheen or shine. 


  • Plugging in an outlet is necessary. 
  • It is a costly product.

Mineral Air Complexion Starter Kit Review

Main features 

  • Boasts a mineral based formula. 
  • Comes with a four-in-one foundation. 
  • A little product goes a long way. 

This unit comes at a relatively affordable price. But don’t underestimate it for its price as it delivers performance that can rival any high-end counterpart. It contains mineral based products that are very gentle on your skin. This also means that there is little to no chance of unsightly cakey foundation. The accompanied foundation serves as a primer, concealer, moisturizer, and foundation. It alone can deliver the HD ready look you are looking for. 


  • Delivers amazing results. 
  • Lightweight and long-lasting. 
  • Very easy to apply. 
  • Supplied with a cleaner. 


  • Not very easy to clean.
  • Needs regular charging.
  1. Art of Air Professional Airbrush Cosmetic Makeup System

Main features 

  • Suitable for both professional and personal usage. 
  • Completely covers all skin imperfections. 
  • Blends makeup seamlessly. 

This is a good airbrush makeup starter kit for beginners. It is very easy to load, use, and clean. It comes with a fully adjustable compressor so you can control the air pressure for achieving the desired effect. You can create both sheer and full coverage looks with it. The accompanying product is matte and soft so there is little risk of a cakey foundation effect. It is a complete makeup kit that comes with a foundation, primer, bronzer, blush, and shimmer. 


  • Delivers both sheer and full coverage.
  • End result is lightweight and non-cakey. 
  • Available at an affordable price.
  • Very easy to clean.


  • Backed by a 14 days warranty only. 
  • Stylus requires regular cleaning.

Tickled Pink Cosmetic Airbrush Makeup Kit

Main features 

  • It is a well-known brand. 
  • Makeup is water-based and organic. 
  • Emollient and safe to use. 

This airbrush system is unique for its Aloe and water-based line of foundations. They are not only safe to use but can also work wonders for your skin. The kit itself is very beginner-friendly for its price and ease of operation. Although it certainly lacks in terms of build quality, it is a great unit to learn and practice on. 


  • This makeup line is 100% cruelty-free. 
  • Instructions are simple and easy to follow. 
  • It comes with the longest warranty on the airbrush market. 
  • It has fantastic customer service. 


  • Their website is not well maintained and doesn’t provide much useful information, but that’s not a big deal. 
  • The build quality is not great. 

After going over all the varying airbrush makeup kits, we can clearly signal out the Temptu Air Perfect Canvas Airbrush Starter Kit as the superior one. As stated above, it is a James Charles approved product. While the celebrated makeup guru may not know how to handle controversies, the one thing he excels at is makeup. If he says that the Temptu is the best airbrush makeup kit, who are we to disagree?

This is just about everything a beginner needs to know about airbrush makeup. We strongly advise you to choose airbrush makeup to fix cakey foundation issues as it has an amazing potential to convert a sleep-deprived zombie into a superwoman. If you found this article useful, please pass on the word around to your friends. Who knows it may reach someone who will actually benefit from reading it.