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The best foundation for all skin types

(2 Posts)
LauraEMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 13-May-20 12:11:13

After a lockdown glow-up? A new foundation can revolutionise your entire makeup routine and leave your skin looking healthy and fresh.

We've spent time trawling the forums to compile a handy list, all in one place, of the very best products as recommended solely by Mumsnet users.

So whether you're looking for something dewy or matte, lightweight or full coverage, these are the best foundations for every skin type.

Have a foundation you absolutely love that's not on our list? Be sure to tell us about it on the thread below and let us know if you found this article useful.

1. Best foundation for oily skin: Fenty Beauty Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

Why it's great: This foundation made headlines for its extensive shade range. Rihanna went as far as finding women with hard-to-match skin tones and flew them in to help create the line.

Shade range aside, this is also just an all-round fantastic foundation - especially if you have oily skin.

Coverage: Medium to full, and easily buildable

Finish: Beautifully matte

Shade range: 50 shades <round of applause>

How long will it last? From morning until evening - if you have especially oily skin, it might need a little touch up come dinner time

What Mumsnet users say:

"Can I just take a minute to gush about how absolutely amazing Rihanna's Fenty makeup brand is? The foundation is second to none. It's the best I have ever tried - creamy, good coverage, but natural. My exact skin match!"

"Fenty is great if you've got an oily complexion."

"The Fenty foundation is absolutely fantastic. I’ve gone back to my old foundation after running out of Fenty and I think it looks terrible now after wearing Fenty for a few months."

Buy now

2. Best foundation for dry skin: No7 HydraLuminous Moisturising Foundation

Why it's great: A relatively cheap foundation, Mumsnetters love how it makes skin look brighter, healthier and fresher in an instant. A water-based foundation, it's best-suited for tired, dry complexions.

Coverage: Light and easily buildable

Finish: Lightweight and natural-looking (basically your skin, but better)

Shade range: 12 shades

How long will it last? Most of the day

What Mumsnet users say:

"Definitely try the No7 HydraLuminous Moisturising Foundation. It's amazing! I've purchased many foundations this year, supposedly long-lasting with a skin-like finish, and they've left me dry, flaky and cakey-looking. The No7 blends like a dream, even on dehydrated, flaky areas, and looks so smooth and fresh. It covers all my rosacea redness, and can be built up on areas that you want to cover (eg, acne scars). I bloody love it."

Buy now

3. Best foundation for combination skin: Yves Saint Laurent Teint Touche Éclat Foundation

Why it's great: Skin somewhere between oily and dry? This foundation will brighten up your complexion a treat. Using a light-reflecting formula to make you positively glow, it also offers fantastic coverage while feeling lightweight.

Coverage: Full

Finish: Radiant

Shade range: 22 shades

How long will it last? All day

What Mumsnet users say:

"I have combination skin, and love the YSL Touche Éclat Foundation. It stays on like a dream and doesn't make me break out."

Buy now

Related: The best lip balms for dry, chapped lips

4. Best foundation for acne-prone skin: Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Foundation

Why it's great: Possibly Mumsnet's favourite foundation, ever. Regularly gushed about on the forums, users love it for its lasting power, flawless coverage and quick application.

If your skin frequently breaks out, this foundation can cover a multitude of sins.

Coverage: Full. It's also humidity-resistant, sweat-resistant and waterproof

Finish: Satin

Shade range: Over 60 shades - bravo, Estée Lauder

How long will it last? 24 hours

What Mumsnet users say:

"Can't recommend Estée Lauder Double wear enough. I have oily skin and Double Wear doesn't break up on my skin."

"Try Double Wear - it's superb. I just bought my first bottle, but wish I'd got it decades ago."

"Another vote for Double Wear. It's my Holy Grail."

Buy now

5. Best foundation for mature skin: Chanel Le Teint Ultra Tenue

Why it's great: If you have older skin, opt for foundations that offer radiance and hydration, as heavy formulas can settle into fine lines and make skin look dull. This one from Chanel has an 'incredibly fine texture as comfortable and imperceptible as a second skin'. It's also beautifully moisturising.

Coverage: Full

Finish: Matte and luminous

Shade range: 16 shades

How long will it last? All day

What Mumsnet users say:

"I'm 50 and have used Chanel Le Teint Ultra Tenue for a few years. It's a long-wear foundation, matte but radiant if that makes sense. I'd thoroughly recommend it. It's very natural-looking and makes my skin look very healthy."

Buy now

6. Best matte foundation: Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless Foundation

Why it's great: Matte and poreless, this is a winner if you've got normal to oily skin. A gloriously cheap foundation, sweep it across your face for an airbrushed finish.

Coverage: Medium

Finish: Smooth and matte

Shade range: 35 shades

How long will it last? Most of the day

What Mumsnet users say:

"I absolutely LOVE Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless. The shade range is amazing, and it's not (as the name suggests) a drying matte foundation that leaves you looking flat. It leaves a satin matte finish and blends in beautifully. You can use a drop or build it up, as I do, to cover redness and acne scars. I also add a bit of loose powder to it when applying, to thicken it and add more coverage and staying power. It doesn't oxidise, emphasise dry patches or sink into pores. Nor does it look like a mask, and it lasts all day long."

Buy now

Related: The best SLS-free shampoo bars

7. Best dewy foundation: MAC Face/Body Foundation

Why it's great: This water-based foundation will make your skin look deliciously dewy. Brilliant for all skin types, you can also use it on your body to cover a rogue zit on your knee or a spot (sorry) of bacne.

Coverage: Lightweight

Finish: Dewy (d'uh)

Shade range: 13 shades

How long will it last? A few hours. Because it's so lightweight, you'll need to top it up a couple times a day

What Mumsnet users say:

"I love the old faithful Mac Face and Body. Tip - if you want a light coverage, put it on with a makeup brush. Want more? Put it on fingers and lightly pat your hands before applying (with fingers). Gives stronger coverage."

Buy now

8. Best full coverage foundation: Yves Saint Laurent All Hours Liquid Foundation

Why it's great: Another Mumsnet favourite from YSL, this full coverage foundation makes for flawless, matte skin. Perfect for photo-riddled events post-lockdown.

Coverage: Full

Finish: Polished and even

Shade range: 39 shades

How long will it last? Up to 24 hours

What Mumsnet users say:

"YSL All Hours has great coverage (buildable from medium to full, but can be sheered out too) and a lovely, natural finish. It's a dream of a foundation. Gorgeous texture, non-drying or caking, and has a natural matte finish - so not flat but not shiny either. It's getting online buzz for a reason."

Buy now

9. Best lightweight foundation: Laura Mercier Oil-Free Tinted Moisturiser

Why it's great: Not a foundation exactly, this award-winning tinted moisturiser lets you create a flawless, no makeup look in seconds. So you can say 'I woke up like this', à la Beyonce, even though you most certainly didn't.

Coverage: Light

Finish: Flawless and natural-looking

Shade range: 15 shades

How long will it last? All day (particularly if you use a primer)

What Mumsnet users say:

"I vote for Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser. It's a halfway house and it's brilliant. If you opt for oil-free, it's also slightly thicker and gives lovely, light coverage."

"Another vote for Laura Mercier Oil-Free Tinted Moisturiser."

Buy now

Related: Banish dry skin with Mumsnet's favourite hand creams

10. Best long-lasting foundation: NARS Sheer Glow

Why it's great: No time to reapply your foundation throughout the day? Meet your miracle product. This NARS foundation makes skin look immaculate from dusk till dawn, and - used daily over time - actually improves your skin.

Coverage: Sheer, but buildable

Finish: Glowing and luminous

Shade range: 40 shades

How long will it last? All day

What Mumsnet users say:

"I've just started using NARS Sheer Glow after I had my makeup done by a professional who used it. It's light but gives me good coverage and lasts all day."

"NARS Sheer Glow is lovely and light, and it's easy to get a colour match."

Buy now

11. Best drugstore foundation: Maybelline Radiant Dream Liquid Foundation

Why it's great: Foundation doesn't come much cheaper than £7.99, but the low price doesn't mean low quality. Far from it. With a hydrating formula that also includes collagen, your skin will be left plump and radiant after application.

Coverage: Light

Finish: Radiant

Shade range: 20 shades (not bad for a high street foundation)

How long will it last? A few hours

What Mumsnet users say:

"I've recently bought Maybelline Dream Liquid Foundation, and it's bloody awesome! It's not overly dewy, but very natural and skin-like. It blends like a dream and can be built up to cover redness with zero cakiness. It hydrates the skin but doesn't leave me like an oil slick. I do set with powder and blot at lunchtime, but it lasts all day long. It's perfect for mature skin and really gives a lovely look to the skin."

Buy now

12. Best vegan foundation: The Ordinary Serum Foundation

Why it's great: Another absolute bargain at just over £10, this vegan foundation has caused quite the stir online. Labelled with undertone identifiers (P for pink, N for neutral, R for red, Y for yellow), finding your perfect match is easy.

Coverage: Full

Finish: Smooth and semi-matte

Shade range: 21 shades

How long will it last? Supposedly all day, but those with oily skin say they need to reapply once or twice throughout

What Mumsnet users say:

"The Ordinary is very good and such a good price."

“The Ordinary is so good it's scary. I only started using it yesterday, and my skin looks much clearer and brighter.”

“I've bought shedloads of the stuff. I love it.”

Buy now

Related: The best vegan makeup brands for 2020

13. Best powder foundation: MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation

Why it's great: Ideal for those looking for a lighter base, and will help to absorb excess oil and combat shine if you have particularly oily skin. The huge shade range is also something that most will appreciate.

Coverage: Medium, but even and mattified

Finish: Airbrushed

Shade range: A whopping 52!

How long will it last? Eight hours, but may require top-ups

What Mumsnet users say:

"I use MAC Studio Fix powder foundation. The range of shades is excellent and it applies well with a powder brush."

"Mac Studio Fix powder takes about 10 seconds to apply."

"It's very quick, gives good coverage and is easy to top up as needed. Would recommend."

"It's the only powder I've used that I can touch up throughout the day without getting cakey."

Buy now

14. Best stick foundation: Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick

Why it's great: Practically three products in one, the Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish offers the coverage of a concealer, foundation and powder without feeling heavy. Great for those who want to use a minimal amount of makeup every day.

Coverage: Full but buildable

Finish: Satin

Shade range: 26 shades

How long will it last? 12 hours, supposedly

What Mumsnet users say:

"I'm 35 with oily skin and I use the Hourglass Stick Foundation. I started using it about two years ago and haven't looked back."

Buy now

Read next: Restore your skin with the best night creams on the market

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LauraM1979 Fri 22-May-20 20:17:05

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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