How to Choose the Right Foundation for Your Skin Type

December 23, 2020
Marisa Petrarca
By: Marisa Petrarca | by L'Oréal
How to Pick the Right Foundation for Your Skin Type

The search to find the perfect foundation for your skin type can leave you overwhelmed by options. With so many different formulas, finishes, textures and ingredients out there, we know that choosing one that works with your complexion can be tricky. To help you sort through the different options, we caught up with makeup artist Gabriel Almodovar. Here, he’s sharing his advice on how to pick the best type of foundation, coverage and finish (think: matte, dewy, velvet) for acne-prone, aging, oily, dry, combination and sensitive skin

Acne-Prone Skin

If acne is a major skin concern for you, Almodovar recommends a medium- to full-coverage foundation. When applying your foundation, use a “clean brush or a clean sponge and apply the product in a stippling motion.” We also like to choose formulas that are infused with acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid. 

Try: Maybelline New York Dream Pure BB Cream, which is formulated with salicylic acid, or the IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Breakout Full Coverage Concealer to conceal any acne flares.  

Aging Skin

Heavy products can settle into fine lines and wrinkles so opt for a light coverage liquid foundation, tinted moisturizer or a foundation specifically formulated for mature skin. The breathable products will keep your skin looking plumped and luminous.

Try: Dermablend Flawless Creator mixed with your favorite moisturizer or the L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation

Dry Skin

To quench your dry skin throughout the day, Almodovar recommends a light coverage, hydrating foundation. When applying your product, use your “fingers and press the product into the skin,” for longer-lasting coverage, says Almodovar.

Try: Giorgio Armani Neo Nude Foundation or the IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better Foundation + Skincare.

Oily Skin

To ditch the shine, choose a medium- to full-coverage foundation. When applying your product use a “sponge or brush because using your fingers can transfer the oil from your hands to your face,” says Almodovar.

Try: Maybelline Fit Me Shine-Free + Balance Stick Foundation or the NYX Professional Makeup Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Full Coverage Foundation

Combination Skin

If you have combination skin, you can choose whether you want to be more on the dewy side or more on the matte side. We suggest a velvet matte foundation that will keep the T-zone oiliness at bay. Then, add a highlight to your cheeks for a glow. Your coverage level and application tool is completely up to you, but try not to use your fingers on your oily areas to avoid clogging pores. 

Try: YSL All Hours Foundation or Maybelline Fit Me! Matte & Poreless Foundation.

Sensitive Skin

Sensitive skin can act up so stay away from products that are too heavy or too fragranced. You want to keep any and all aggressors to a minimum. Keep the coverage on the lighter side and always apply with a clean brush or sponge.

Try: L'Oréal Paris Skin Paradise Water Infused Tinted Moisturizer or La Roche-Posay Matte Foundation for Sensitive Skin.

Photography: Chaunte Vaughn, Art Direction: Melissa San Vicente-Landestoy, Associate Producer: Becca Solovay, Makeup Artist and Hair Stylist: Jonet Williamson, Wardrobe Stylist: Alexis Badiyi, Digital Tech: Paul Yem, Model: Camryn Herold

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