Best Foundations for Dry Skin


If you suffer with dry skin, often it can feel like foundation makes the problem worse. However, all you need to do is find the right makeup for your skin type and it can even help your skin feel better. The right foundation can hydrate your skin and leave it feeling soothed and softened.

What causes dry skin?

Dry skin on your face can be caused by a variety of problems, such as eczema or other medical conditions, but often the environment is the cause. Whether you work in an air-conditioned office, or live in a polluted city, even dusty air can affect your skin; strong soaps, poor-quality moisturisers, too-hot water in your shower, a lack of oily foods in your diet, cold weather and synthetic fabrics can all leave a toll on your skin. The balance of moisture in your skin is a delicate one.

Which foundation is good for dry skin?

Always choose a foundation that has hydrating properties. You could use a tinted moisturiser during the day, and a foundation in the evening when you go out, for a lighter everyday feel. Apply your foundation with a brush, rather than your fingers, but remember to wash your brushes regularly.

What is the best liquid foundation for dry skin?

If you have dry skin, then a liquid foundation is the best type for you; look for a brand that includes hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid - it will keep your skin’s moisture levels topped up throughout the day. Light-reflecting properties in a foundation are great too, as dry skin can often look dull.

Can I use powder foundation when I have dry skin?

Powder foundation isn’t generally recommended for dry skin, as the it will stick to your skin and make the dry areas look worse. It can also make your skin look even more dull.

What's the best foundation for dry mature skin over 40?

More mature skin often starts to feel dry and tight, so make sure you use a serum to give your skin extra hydration before you even think about a foundation. Light, moisture-rich foundations are your friends, and again it’s best to avoid a powder foundation, as it might settle into fine lines.

We’ve chosen the best foundations on the market for dry skin, whatever your budget.

bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream

bareMinerals call this a 'tinted hydrating gel-cream', performing as a moisturiser, foundation and SPF all at once. It’s said to be a BB cream and CC cream at the same time, saving you time and giving your dry skin a massive boost of hydration while looking soft and smooth.


Clarins Skin Illusion Foundation SPF 15

A hydrating, plumping foundation that will leave you with a dewy finish, this Clarins foundation contains nourishing oils but won’t give you an oily finish. It also has added Anti-Pollution Complex, to protect your skin from the environment.


Delilah Time Frame Future Resist Foundation

This light foundation is buildable for a flawless finish, a super-fluid option that will keep skin feeling velvety all day.


Oxygenetix Breathable Foundation

This revolutionary foundation helps to oxygenate the skin and gives you complete coverage. It’s also designed for skin with scars, as the repairing complex boosts collagen production and helps to rebuild tissue.


Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser

This tinted moisturiser feels light but hydrates your skin and gives a great coverage. It’s loved by makeup artists. Its antioxidant properties protect your skin from drying environments, too.


Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation True

A real money-saving foundation, pop this in your basket when you’re in Superdrug for a full-coverage hydrating solution. It aims to stay colour true for 25 hours, great when you need coverage all day long.

Yves Saint Laurent Forever Youth Liberator Foundation

This foundation will give you plump, hydrated skin, and includes serum in the formula so it acts as an anti-aging moisturiser too. A luxury foundation that will brighten your skin and reduce the appearance of any fine lines.


Bobbi Brown Intensive Skin Serum Foundation

With lychee, bamboo grass and cordyceps mushroom extracts, this foundation will make your skin feel hydrated and silky all day. It glides on to the skin for a really natural finish.


Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Foundation

This gel foundation will brighten up dull, dry skin and keep it feeling soft and moisturised throughout the day - and it’s really gentle on your wallet, too.


Burberry Fresh Glow Foundation

Burberry’s surprisingly popular makeup range includes this lightweight foundation which hydrates and gives you a dewy look thanks to mirror-flat reflection pearls. It also features Burberry’s signature blend of lavender, rosehip and tea.

Stuart Adam