Foundation is the core essence of makeup. Some swear by it, others….not so much. With foundation, comes the first of many steps with your daily routine. It all depends on your aesthetic and your personal desire to cover things up.
In this post, I wanted to highlight some top makeup foundations I’ve come across myself, as well as word of mouth recommendations I’ve picked up.
Breaking down the formula.
So if you’re starting to wear makeup, you’re probably going to want the best foundation that fits you. If you’re a veteran with makeup, you’re probably also in the same boat. When you think about it, the comparison between beginner and expert with makeup isn’t always drastically different. We all want what’s going to suit us best!
If you’re looking for the top makeup foundations, here are some formulas broken down.
- Liquid: Ahh, liquid. The most popular formula of this generation. The reasoning for this, at least for foundation, is because it reacts well with most skin types. If you have normal or dry skin, it’s recommended to use a liquid with more of an oily type base. There are some made well for ace-prone, combination, and oily skin. Meaning there are liquids that exist without oil. Phew!
- Powder: Not as talked about in this generation as it once was, this formula works best for oily skin! It does wonders for absorbing oil and adding extra softness. It’s also nice because minimal to zero setting powder is needed for this formula. Not really ideal for dry skin, as it causes crease lines and dry patches.
- Spray: All spray foundations are super lightweight, making it very comfortable for sensitive and ace-prone skin types to wear.
- Cream: The creamier the formula, the more moisturizing it will be. This is super ideal for dry skin, mature’d, and normal. Not the best option for oily skin and ace-prone/sensitive skin.
- Stick: So if you think about it, stick foundation is very similar to the cream consistency. Just in a solid. Super smart and simple. Some even have lighter pigments in the center, making the skin appear more natural.
- Mineral: Mineral foundation is lovely in a few different ways. It’s free of chemicals and harsh dyes, fragrance, and ironically; mineral oils. It’s naturally oil free so it works well with sensitive and ace-prone skin types.
Formulas of foundation may vary, as well as the types of finish that they have on the skin.
- Satin: If you happened to be blessed with normal or combo skin, you’re probably going to like a satin finish. It makes the skin appear natural and feather-light and has a soft semi-matte look. This is a popular go-to.
- Matte: It was great day for us oily skin people when this trend showed up! Foundations with a matte finish work best for oily skin and combo. If you really love the look of a baby soft face without any shine, but have normal to dry skin, it’s recommended to use a moisturizing primer before applying.
- Luminous: This type of finish is sometimes referred to as radiant. It has a glistening, bright effect on the skin and is sometimes mixed with other non shimmer foundations to balance the color. This type is recommended for mature’d skin. That glow though.
Does primer really make a difference?
In all my years of applying foundation, I was never huge on the hype about primer. (I always just used a moisturizer before applying instead). I’m definitely not dragging this step, as it is a staple in a lot of people’s makeup routine.
I have heard of many benefits to applying this before diving into coverage. A few things that primer is great for:
- Makes the face appear more soft and smooth
- Diminishing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Can reduce the appearance of acne/acne scars
- Helps balance uneven skin tones
Now this all sounds like pure bliss. Why wouldn’t you want to incorporate this into your daily routine? Well, most foundations have caught up to the trend of having everything you need in one bottle. A little multitasking won’t hurt anybody, am I right?
But there are primers that have great reviews and aren’t always a bad idea to try. Especially for the people out there with dry skin, a primer and moisturizer could work hand-in-hand. Hydrated skin is happy skin!
I’ve heard great things about ‘bareMinerals Prime Time Primer’ and ‘bareMinerals Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer’.
Now first things first, these are both paraben and cruelty-free. Lovely. The ‘Prime Time Primer’ is made for all skin types, which is super attractive in my opinion. It also was made to smooth over imperfections and balance out uneven skin tones, which a lot of people tend to have problems with.
The ‘Blemish Rescue Anti-Redness Mattifying Primer’ is said to keep the moisture in your skin locked in all day, without giving your face an oily effect, as well as reducing the look of redness. (Dry skin types, I’m looking at you.)
These both have 4 and a half stars and are both pretty affordable. This brand has its own counter in Sephora. I imagine they have one in Ulta Beauty stores in the States as well, but I live in Canada so I don’t know this for certain.
Another thing about ‘bareMinerals’ brand itself is that they insist on making products that go easy on the skin. They have a whole blog dedicated to the myths and in’s and out’s about their brand and mineral make up in general. I highly recommend reading about them before dipping into their makeup, as you’ll grasp a clear concept and probably build an appreciation!
As did I when the first product I tried was their travel sized ‘Original Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15’ I found in an ‘ipsy’ bag a few years ago. I remember the tiny product ran out fast because I couldn’t get enough of how soft it was on my skin. I can only imagine what it would’ve felt like if I had a primer to go with it!
The ‘bareMinerals Prime Time Primer’ is available for purchase here.
There’s one for everybody.
Now if you’re looking for the best foundation in each formula, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve also added in coverage details.
- Liquid: ‘bareMinerals BAREPRO® Performance Wear Liquid Foundation SPF 20’. This whole line has about 35 different shades. This foundation targets full coverage, has a nice cream to liquid ratio, and a naturally matte finish. Sounds like heaven if you ask me. Available for purchase here.
- Powder: ‘Maybelline Fit Me Matte Poreless Powder’. I can honestly say out of all drug store brands, Maybelline always comes in clutch. This super lightweight powder offers medium coverage and really emphasizes on how well it ‘fits’ to your skin, evening out textures and tones. I can definitely vouch for this brand in the powder department! Available for purchase here.
- Spray: ‘Dior Airflash Spray Foundation’. A luxury brand, I know. But the benefits of this little guy are insane! An airbrushed look and radiant finish, leaving you with full coverage that lasts up to 12 hours. (Photoshop who?). Not to mention that it’s a spray, so the texture on the skin is going to be so light. Great for summer and super easy to apply! Available for purchase here.
- Cream: ‘Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation SPF 15′. This makeup artist approved line comes in about 20 different shades, offering full coverage and a super silky consistency. A little goes a long way with this one, as you don’t need to apply much to get all the good benefits it has to offer! Available for purchase here.
- Stick: ‘Anastasia Beverly Hills Stick Foundation’. For a great stick foundation, this product is pretty affordable! It has full coverage but also promises ‘buildable’ coverage, which is important when applying contour after foundation. It also offers a soft, natural matte finish. 100% vegan approved! (Available at Sephora online and in store).
- Mineral: ‘Jane Iredale Liquid Minerals® A Foundation’. This beautiful mineralized foundation reduces the department of fine lines and wrinkles and is very hydrating! It holds medium coverage, making it great for summer as I know its very common not to wear heavier make up when during all-day sun. It’s also 100% vegan. Available for purchase here.
To prime it all together.
Of course, there are definitely a lot of other great reviews on top makeup foundation brands. These are ones I have hand-picked out of experience from myself or word of mouth.
Personally, I have the best understanding of what foundation works for me with figuring out my skin type first. Years ago, I didn’t even think to consider this, but I have to tell you; it makes the worlds difference.
I truly hope this helps & thanks for reading!