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The Best Foundation

Last updated on December 18, 2022

We looked at the top 8 Foundations and dug through the reviews from 25 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Foundations.

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

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Our Picks For The Top Foundations

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
Pros
Cons
 Top Pick

Maybelline New York Fit Me Matte & Poreless Liquid Foundation

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Maybelline New York

Fit Me Matte & Poreless Liquid Foundation

This brand has many shades to choose from, so there's something for almost every skin tone. While this is a matte foundation that works best on oily faces, it can adapt to a variety of skin types. The result is an even layer that has plenty of staying power.

Overall Take

Smooth and AdaptableWhether your skin is oily or dry, you'll love this matte, pore-blurring foundation.

Pros
" An extremely affordable matte foundation that offers many shade options."
Cons
"The bottle comes without a pump dispenser. Contains parabens"
 Runner Up

Milani Conceal & Perfect 2-in-1 Foundation & Concealer

Milani

Conceal & Perfect 2-in-1 Foundation & Concealer

Whatever look you need, this foundation provides a nice base. You can rub just a little on to brighten up the skin or layer it thickly to cover up blemishes or uneven areas. However you use it, the formula still allows room for pores to breathe.

Overall Take

Beautiful Full CoverageKeep the same natural look whether you prefer a thick or thin layer of foundation.

Pros
" A full coverage foundation that lasts all day and is great for dry skin."
Cons
"Heavy formula can be irritating or drying. Somewhat difficult to blend"
 We Also Like

L’Oreal Paris Infallible 24 Hour Pro-Glow Foundation

L'Oreal Paris

Infallible 24 Hour Pro-Glow Foundation

If you have a drier skin type, this lightweight water-based foundation is a great start. Even though it has a thinner consistency, it's easy to layer and has great staying power. The added SPF is a nice bonus if you plan to be outdoors.

Overall Take

Helps Dry SkinProtect your skin with this long-lasting cream formula, which includes some SPF.

Pros
" A budget friendly foundation that includes sun protection"
Cons
"Does require some touchup to keep shine at bay, especially in hot summer weather."

Even though this foundation is liquid-based, it stays on and builds nicely. Those with dry skin will see the best results, but it works equally well for those with combination skin. Applied properly, you can expect this to last for many hours.

Overall Take

Long Lasting CoverageYou can layer to your liking with this smooth, matte foundation that's camera-ready.

Pros
" Forget flashback, Wet n Wild's Photo Focus Foundation was literally invented to thwart that snowy sheen that can rear its unwanted head in photos. In fact, it was tested in seven different lighting settings — from a nightclub to a..."
Cons
"Wears off within 4 hours. Limited shades"

Buying Guide

Whether you’re going all-out with daring hues and deep red lipstick or just trying to bring out your natural skin tone, it all starts with a good foundation. This “base” makeup is the first thing you put on your face every day, and it just might be the most important.

There are a lot of factors that go into choosing the right foundation type, and for some it can be a lifelong search to find the perfect one — especially since complexions can change over time, and new products come out on the market every day.

There are plenty of ways to narrow things down, though, and the first one is to determine your skin type. Oily and dry are the basic classifications, but bear in mind that some faces can be oily in one area and dry in another. If you’ve got primarily oily skin, you’ll want to steer toward a powder or perhaps a cream formula. Needless to say, you’ll want something that’s oil free, or you can expect to reapply often as the makeup slides off.

Dry skin typically does better with a liquid or cream foundation, and something with moisturizer will help your pores stay healthy while they’re being covered with makeup. For combination skin types, you may want to do more experimenting. A powder will generally work best but one key is to find a moisturizer that you can layer easily, working in more on the areas where you need it. Liquids or creams are great when it comes to that sort of flexibility.

That takes care of your skin’s consistency, but you won’t get a natural look unless you consider your skin’s undertones. You’ll often hear makeup artists refer to warm or cool undertones, and it’s not the same thing as skin color. Some faces naturally have a golden tint that denotes a warm undertone, and it’s usually most noticeable in bright sunlight. Other people might have a pink or blue cast to their skin, which is a cool undertone.

Of course, some undertones are more pronounced than others, and some people may be more or less neutral in this regard. Cool undertones usually do best with foundation in the tan, beige or pink spectrum while warmer undertones work well with darker colors in a wider spectrum, depending on the skin’s basic shade.

Finally, there’s the finish of your foundation. This is basically the texture of the makeup, and while it has nothing to do with color, it can make a big difference in whether you look like a model or a mannequin. Foundation with a matte finish is common, since it aims to mimic skin’s natural feel. This is the one you want if you need more coverage, since it generally layers well. If you have dry skin that needs a bit of shine, go with a dewy finish that gives the face a freshly moisturized sheen. And on those days where you don’t need much foundation at all, a sheer finish will go on lighter and let the skin’s original texture show through.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
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Products Considered

We identified the majority of the foundations available to purchase.
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Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

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Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: BestReviews, Glamour 'N Glow, IMBB, Style Craze, Best Reviews Guide.

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User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 8 Foundations and also dug through the reviews from 25 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Foundations.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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What to Look For

Figure out your undertone for the best foundation coverage: look at your vein color. If the veins around your neck have a bluish hue, your undertone is likely on the cool side. If they’re green, you probably lean toward the warm side. Then there is the skin’s reaction to sunlight: Those with a cool undertone tend to burn easily, while warmer tones can take a little more exposure.

Decide what kind of coverage you want (light, medium, full). When you find the color that suits you best, make an initial test along your jawline, not just on your hand, to see how the color blends between your face and your neck. You may want to make sure you understand the return policy if you’re buying online and end up finding the hue you just purchased to be unsuitable.

More to Explore

White complexions were coveted as far back as ancient Greek and Roman times as a sign of prosperity in many cultures, leading both men and women to apply dangerous concoctions to their faces to make them paler. In biblical times, face painting involved a white chalk that was lead-based. Women later adopted the use of ceruse, a mix of vinegar and white lead that led to many health issues and even death, and in the sixth century women bled themselves for that pale look. The use of toxic materials continued into the 19th century, when face-enhancing formulas included mercury, lead, nitrate of silver and acids. Some women even drank iodine to achieve whiteness.

In 1920, though, Max Factor invented makeup he called “pan-cake,” a foundation and powder made from talc that could be applied with a wet sponge. It covered blemishes, was lightweight, and could be worn publicly.

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