We don’t typically associate make-up with being good for our skin. In fact, we often tend to assume that products such as foundation and concealer can have the opposite effect, clogging pores and leading to breakouts. Over the years, brands have found a happy medium between creating a great make-up product, and ensuring it doesn’t bother or worsen skin, but even more recently, some have taken it one step further. There are now some great foundation options out there that not only will give you brilliant levels of coverage, but also have skin-boosting properties.
While it’s important to still maintain a comprehensive skincare routine in order to get all the ingredients you need, wearing a base with extra hydrating, spot-fighting, or pollution-protecting qualities on top certainly can’t hurt, says Megan Felton, co-founder of skincare consultancy lion/ne.
‘Ingredients to look for in foundations would be things that help to prevent free radical damage [from pollution and UV rays] like antioxidants and SPF – or if you are looking for an added hydrating step [on top of your skincare routine] then glycerin or hyaluronic acid are great.’
9 of the best foundations with skincare benefits
The newest of the bunch, this foundation was born out of a wish to create a product that was part make-up, part skincare. It features Hepes Acid, which gently exfoliates, hyaluronic acid and aloe vera, which hydrate and smooth the skin’s surface, and vitamins E & B5 work to moisturise the skin and fight free radicals to strengthen the skin barrier. Oh, and it comes in an impressive 40 shades.
Available in 44 shades, Charlotte Tilbury’s newest foundation promises some great skincare benefits as well as an impressive finish and level of coverage. It claims to give 24 hours of hydration for the skin, and contains something Charlotte calls the ‘Magic Replexium,’ for impressive anti-ageing effects.
This bargain option, which also boasts 44 shades, has glycerin for oily skin types, hyaluronic acid for hydration, and aloe vera for calming. And true to its name, you’re most likely to find a great match for your skin tone.
If you’re on the lookout for a foundation that will help protect skin from the dangerous effects of pollution, this is your formula. It contains hero ingredient buckwheat seed extract, which works like an extra protective layer to ward off environmental aggressors. The product comes in 16 shades.
Oily skin? Give this one a go, which has Bamboo Powder and Kaolin Clay to control excess shine. Your skin certainly won’t feel stripped though, given that it also features hyaluronic acid and vitamin E on the ingredients list. Available in 40 shades.
This clever foundation adapts to your skin tone and condition, ‘refreshing’ itself in order to provide ultimate long-wear. But for the purposes of this article, know that it contains Wild Thyme Extract, which has brilliant antioxidant benefits that are great for helping with pollution protection. You can buy this one in 30 shades.
This hardworking foundation has been hailed as a life saver for those who are spot-prone or have oily skin types. It uses ingredients such as salicylic acid to target breakouts, reducing inflammation and keeping the area clean to speed up recovery. Available in 15 shades.
If powder foundations are your thing, consider this one by Bareminerals, which due to its texture, naturally allows skin to breathe a little more. Its ingredients list reads like a who’s who of spot fighting ingredients too, from 0.5% salicylic acid to zinc, sulfur, and kaolin clay. Available in 10 shades.
La Mer’s creams and potions have long been hailed for their skin-saving properties, and luckily their foundation contains the same miracle broth to boost skin while still looking fabulous. The ultimate luxury, available in 28 shades.