The best place to test out a foundation is on your face, afterall that is where you will be wearing it. Do not be convinced that the back of the hand is a good testing site, it isn't!!! A bit on the jawline or cheek and leave it on your skin for a little while just to make sure that the colour is not changed by the acidity of your skin, some people do have this problem.
Foundations come in many different consistancies...solid sticks, powders, liquids.
As a loose rule the liquids and powders are better for a light to medium coverage. Sticks are better for a medium to full coverage.
Try Bobby Brown for premium range or Maybelline for budget brands.