How to Apply Matte Foundation if You Have Dry Skin

March 14, 2023
Ariel Wodarcyk
By: Ariel Wodarcyk | by L'Oréal
Person swatching foundation on their cheek

If you have oily skin, you probably have plenty of matte foundations in your makeup collection — but those with dry skin might shy away from the formula and solely stick to dewy or natural-finish picks. That’s because without the right hydrating skincare prep, matte skin can go from sophisticated, natural and a ’90s supermodel staple to cakey, flaky and heavy-looking. To find out how to wear matte foundation if you have dry skin, keep reading as a makeup artist shares tips for pulling off the matte look.

How to Wear Matte Foundation if You Have Dry Skin

Step 1: Hydrate Your Skin

If you’re after the soft matte look, skin prep is key. After you’ve let your usual moisturizer and sunscreen soak in, makeup artist Joseph Carillo recommends applying a hydrating primer. “The Maybelline New York Master Prime Hydrate + Smooth Primer leaves the skin not only moisturized, but provides a smooth base for applying makeup overtop,” he says.

Maybelline New York Master Prime Hydrate + Smooth Primer

Step 2: Use a Sponge Instead of a Brush

“A very important element of applying matte foundation is to use a damp Beautyblender, ” says Carillo. “The moisture mixed with the foundation really makes it look like skin.” For a matte foundation that will make blending even easier, try the matte and transfer-proof YSL Beauty All Hours Foundation.

YSL Beauty All Hours Foundation

Step 3: Finish With a Setting Spray

A setting spray gives your skin an extra hit of hydration and makes your makeup last longer. To keep your skin looking matte but not cakey or flat, try the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray. As for powder, Carillo says that those with dry skin can usually skip it. “That said, if you want to ensure your foundation is locked in place, I'd go for a loose powder and set only where you get oily,” he says. Think the T-zone and the sides of the nose.

Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray
Photo: Melissa San-Vicente Landestoy

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