7 Best Foundations for Combination Skin, According to Makeup Artists

Pro picks perfect for a combo complexion.

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If you have combination skin, you likely already very well-known what a pain in the you-know-what it can be to find effective skincare products. Simply put, combination skin is drier in some areas (usually on the cheeks and the perimeter of the face) and oilier in others (typically the T-zone). Moisturizing products may be too heavy for some spots and not moisturizing enough in others; oil-absorbing products may work effectively in some areas and end up over-drying the skin in others. Point being, finding the right products is a delicate balance—and the same applies when it comes to makeup, too, particularly foundation.

“Individuals with combination skin may have issues with the finish of their foundation, as it will sit differently on areas that are dry versus those that are oily. Mattifying formulas may be too drying for the dryer parts of their face, whereas hydrating ones are too wet and won’t sink into the skin on the oilier parts of their face,” explains celebrity makeup artist Bryan Cantor.

So, what’s the solution? First, prep with a primer, in order to give the foundation an even surface to adhere to across the skin, he says. Then, choose the right foundation. “Look for foundations labeled ‘for all skin types,’ which will ensure it’s neither too hydrating nor too drying,” Cantor explains.

To make it easy for you, we rounded up seven of the best foundations for combination skin. Read more about why the pros love them, here.

Laura Mercier Real Flawless Perfecting Foundation

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Laura Mercier Real Flawless Perfecting Foundation

Cantor says this lightweight, medium coverage formula is a great choice for all skin types, but especially those with combination skin. It contains bamboo silk powders to help control shine, as well as a hydro-lipid matrix to balance moisture, he says. The addition of antioxidants that help protect the skin from environmental damage, and the fact that it’s waterproof and lasts for 12 hours, are just added benefits.

Too Faced Born This Way Natural Finish Longwear Liquid Foundation

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Too Faced Born This Way Natural Finish Longwear Liquid Foundation

“This product has a beautiful, skin-like finish. It’s oil-free, yet still hydrating because it contains coconut water, which is great for combination skin,” says makeup artist Matthew Fishman. Also nice: It comes in an expansive range of over 30 shades, with options for all skin tones. 

Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation

Cantor calls this foundation a skincare-makeup hybrid, offering not only medium coverage but also helping to hydrate, prevent shine, and smooth the skin. It’s the perfect choice for those with combination skin, thanks to ingredients that decrease oiliness and shine, as well as lock in moisture and combat dryness and dullness, he says.

LYS Beauty Triple Fix Serum Foundation

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-LYS Beauty Triple Fix Serum Foundation

According to Fishman, this is easily one of his fave foundations for combination skin. He lauds it for delivering a blurring effect that leaves skin looking flawless,  as well as its buildable, light-to-medium coverage. Lightweight hyaluronic acid in the mix imparts just enough hydration to hydrate dry spots, without looking (or feeling) too heavy on any oiler areas. 

Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Natural Matte Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Natural Matte Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30

Okay, so this technically isn’t a foundation per se, but Cantor says it’s a great option for combo skin. The oil-free formula uses marine botanicals to reduce shine, while ingredients like hyaluronic acid and squalene help to maintain hydration, he explains. The natural matte finish is an added plus, enough to tamp down unwanted sheen without looking too chalky on drier spots.

Westmore Beauty Instantly Flawless Foundation Buildable Coverage + Illuminator

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Westmore Beauty Instantly Flawless Foundation Buildable Coverage + Illuminator

“This is another great option for combination skin,” says Fishman. “Because of its buildable coverage, you are able to get a flawless, glowy finish on any skin type. The advanced formula is also water and sweat-resistant, which helps with long-term wear. It also has a beautiful, buildable coverage that never looks cakey,” he says.

Gucci Éternité de Beauté 24 Hour Full Coverage Luminous Matte Finish Foundation

best-foundation-for-combination-skin-Gucci Éternité de Beauté 24 Hour Full Coverage Luminous Matte Finish Foundation

I love this for those with combination skin because not only does it have mattifying bamboo powder to help control shine, it also has hyaluronic acid and black rose oil to help maintain hydration, says Cantor. It stays put for 24 hours and has a radiant-yet-matte finish that works beautifully for combination skin.

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