Searching for the perfect foundation? These are the best-reviewed picks that you absolutely need to try if you want even, smooth skin!
There’s nothing quite like finding the perfect foundation to truly complete your makeup routine by making sure it starts in the smoothest, most even possible way. I’ve been obsessed with beauty for almost two decades and working in the industry for eight years, and I still think finding a solid foundation is one of the most difficult things for an individual to do. Whether it’s a matter of finding one in your budget or in your skin tone, snagging a product that matches, covers, conceals, and works with your personal complexion type is tough.
Since it’s impossible for us to try ’em all, we asked our readers for their best recommendations, and they offered a ton of great info that we can disperse to you now! If you’ve been on the hunt for one that doesn’t bother your skin or does not give you the coverage you desire, try picking up one of these.
1. Tarte Amazonian Clay Foundation
Given the high reviews of Tarte’s Amazonian Clay Blush, it makes tons of sense that this foundation would be equally popular. Commenter Mae explains why she loves it:
I’m in love with the Tarte’s Amazonian Clay foundation; it’s medium-full coverage and says it has a 12-hour wear, which actually lasts me almost a full day. It is so nice; I splurged and bought the brush that goes with it, a really nice “airbrush finish” type of thing. The nicest set I’ve bought in a long time.
The proper brush can make all the difference, so if you’ve had trouble with foundation in the past, perhaps you just need a better tool like this one!
2. Marc Jacobs Genius Gel Super-Charged Oil-Free Foundation
According to reader Gen, this foundation is well worth the price:
Marc Jacobs Genius Gel Foundation gives me the most flawless coverage and lasts all day. I have pretty dry skin, and it doesn’t make me look patchy or flaky, nor does it cling to my pores.
Naturally, one of the fashion kings created a makeup brand that is already highly lauded and beloved.
3. Revlon ColorStay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin
According to our trusty intern Sara, this is a trusty pick:
I’ve been using Revlon ColorStay for Normal/Dry Skin in Ivory ever since I started wearing foundation, and I’m totally obsessed with it. It’s one of the few foundations I’ve been able to find with a shade that actually works on my skin, it’s breathable, and it stays on all day!
Commenter GozertheGreat agrees, saying this:
Revlon ColorStay is my jam and has been since the mid-90s. I stray sometimes, but I always end up going back. It matches my skin tone well, it doesn’t budge, and it’s easy on the wallet.
Of course, one of the most treasured drugstore brands has an excellent foundation.
4. Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation
This European import offers a fresh finish and a smooth texture. According to Elyne, this is a wonderful option, especially if you’re very pale:
Bourjois Healthy Mix, no doubt. It’s the only one that is pale enough, moisturize, and gives a nice glow to my skin. My second fave would be the cream foundation from Makeup Designery; it’s pale enough, easy to blend, and covers really good.
Pale girls, unite! And then cover-up.
5. Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup
Who doesn’t love Urban Decay? Nobody, that’s who. Reader Hannah makes it sound just about perfect:
Urban Decay Naked Skin, dude. Fully blendable, easily mixed with moisturizer for a lighter tint, and the color range extends beyond ivory and beige.
Commenter Elizabeth also gave this one rave reviews:
The palest (0.5) is actually my color of pale (which never happens!), it doesn’t look weird on super dry skin like mine, and it evens out skin tone nicely without covering my freckles, which is nothing short of miraculous.
If you want great quality, medium coverage, and a stunning flawless finish, go for this option.
6. Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover Foundation
We recently reviewed this foundation for Controversial Cult Fave, and it still stands as one of our best.
Plus, it’s offered in tons of shades, so don’t worry about having to settle for an imperfect one.
7. COVER FX Total Cover Cream Foundation
According to reader Perriheyyy, this is her forever foundation pick:
I am currently using Cover Fx’s Cream foundation, which I have to say is what I will be sticking with forever. The shade looks like they made it specifically for my pale with golden undertones. Which is a tall order, I’m a multi-ethnic black woman, and my skin is right in between that “fair” and “olive” range. I am just now getting a grip on the nodular acne that had me caking on concealer; this foundation is creamy, full coverage, and has a built-in SPF., not to mention it comes in about 20 shades. I want to include a photo, but I am far too lazy.
Want great coverage in a wide variety of shades? Check out this miracle product.
8. Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF 35
Bobbi Brown has some of the best makeup ever, period, and this is one of the most highly-rated BB creams on the market. Commenter tempura-san shares her secret one-two punch for her complexion:
I searched forever for a decent foundation, but now I use two types of BB cream mixed together – a Korean brand called DrG and Bobbi Brown in either medium-dark or new-dark.
I’m so committed to this that, as a bridesmaid in a friend’s wedding recently, I had the makeup artist use this instead of his usual foundation. It blends perfectly with my skin (the DrG has a superior texture, and the Bobbi Brown has thicker coverage), is SPF 35, and looks very natural, which is key for me. He dusted over it with a bit of bronzer and some translucent powder, and it stayed on all.
Speaking from experience, this is such a lovely product. Really.
9. Dr. G Gowoonsesang Perfect Pore Cover BB Cream SPF 30
I had actually never heard of this brand until the commenter from #8 shared the above secret recipe with us, but now I absolutely need to try it!
10. Make Up For Ever Duo Mat Powder Foundation
Make Up For Ever comes through no matter what formula you love–liquid (see #6) or powder! According to footnotegirl, this foundation “actually also goes on awesomely well with a damp Beauty Blender,” so if you’ve feared powders in the past, now’s the time to get over it.
11. Maybelline Fit Me Foundation
Maybelline continuously churns out inexpensive yet excellent makeup. I personally love the Fit Me Concealer and use it all the time, so I wasn’t surprised to see this get recommended by a reader footnotegirl, who says that “both their liquid and stick foundations in this formula are shockingly good for a drugstore brand!”
12. Rimmel London Match Perfection Foundation
This foundation, recommended by Alexis, might just be your perfect match! Rimmel London products are always wonderful–particularly when you consider the price–so give it a try for sure.
13. Revlon Color Stay Whipped Creme Makeup
Remember whipped foundations? They’re still around, and they’ve only gotten better. According to Veronica, this is excellent for makeup lovers on a budget and in a hurry:
Now that I’m a broke student, I’ve been using Revlon Colorstay WHIPPED. I’ve tried the Colorstay liquid, but it highlighted every bump and crevice. The whipped version makes my skin very smooth and airbrushed-looking, and oh man, that thing has lasting power. On days where I slept in my makeup and woke up late, I rushed to the school in last night’s makeup, and it still looks great. I woke up like this, flawless. It takes some elbow grease to get it off.
Broke but still want great quality? This is the one for you.
14. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
According to Gen, this is great for daily use:
Every day, going to work in a rush foundation would have to be the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer. It gives more coverage than you would think a tinted moisturizer would yet still looks completely natural.
This is one of the most beloved tinted moisturizers, so if you don’t need or desire a ton of coverage, definitely try it out!
15. Yves Saint Laurent Youth Liberator Serum Foundation SPF 20
Both Heather and Brooke noted this as their fave, with the latter saying this:
YSL youth liberator serum. The price makes me want to cry, but at least my skin will look flawless while doing so.
Perfectly stated, girl.
16. Dolce&Gabbana Perfect Luminous Liquid Foundation
Try this. I am wearing it at this very moment, and I’m obsessed with it because no matter how tired or gross I feel, it makes my skin look smooth and pretty. You will love it, I swear.
17. Nyx Cosmetics Stay Matte Powder Foundation
Echo7341 shared this info on it:
Right now, I’m loving the NYX matte powder foundation! I haven’t been in the mood to spend a lot of time on my makeup lately (I would rather sleep!), and this is perfect.
Would you believe you can get amazing coverage for under $10? Believe it!
18. Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Makeup
I’ll never stop loving Clinique–especially their complexion products. Assia recommended this pick, as did AniL, who said:
Just the right amount of coverage, and I can build on it perfectly. I have skin that breaks out from EVERYTHING, from a glass of wine to a stressful moment, so this stuff is my savior.
If you’ve got sensitive skin, you need to try this one.
19. MAKE Soft Focus Foundation
Aside from having some of the coolest packagings around, MAKE also makes one of the best foundations out there. It offers a wonderful texture and excellent coverage, and it comes in a huge variety of shades, so anybody can wear it.
20. Etude House Precious Mineral BB Bright Fit
Sick of not having your makeup last all day? Arale recommends this product from Etude!
Yeah, it’s a BB cream, but I love how it makes my skin glows healthily. Bonus point: once drunkenly jumped to a swimming pool, came out 2 hours later, and my skin still looked perfectly flawless, and after 8 hours under Bali’s scorching sun to boot!
And just look at that lovely pink packaging!
21. Max Factor Whipped Creme Foundation
Another lovely whipped option. Our writer Liz Licata says she loves it so much that she even puts it over other foundation for even better coverage!
22. bareMinerals Original Foundation
Both Liz and Anne Marie Hawkins are into this foundation, which was one of the most groundbreaking products in foundation given its unique texture and the fact that you can actually sleep in it without destroying your complexion.
23. Lorac POREfection Foundation
Like I said in my original post, this foundation is fantastic and will leave your skin with such a smooth finish; it’s ridiculous.
24. Vichy Dermablend Corrective Compact Cream Foundation
This recommendation from arale sounds wonderful:
A flawless and natural finish easily hides all redness and scars with just one thin layer. You can cover tattoos with it. So weightless it actually feels like you put nothing on your skin and stay put all day, even in a humid tropical climate.
Dermablend has long been a fave of people covering up tattoos, but it’s also perfect for when you simply want to cover up that pesky blemish!
How many of these have you tried? Share your experiences in the comments!