The best foundation for oily skin to keep you shine-free all day

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  • Make shiny skin a thing of the past with these hero buys

    Is that midday shine your beauty nemesis? Feel like you constantly battle with breakouts? If you haven’t got the best foundation for oily skin in your arsenal already, then listen up.

    Using the best foundation for your skin type is a complete game changer, but you need to know what to look for.

    Quicklinks: Best foundation for oily skin

    L’Oréal Paris Infallible 24hr Matte Cover Foundation, £9.99 | Lookfantastic
    At the bargain price of £9.99, this is the best drugstore foundation for oily skin. Apply all over and buff from the centre of the face outwards for smooth coverage that’ll last all day. It’s super duper mattifying, so you won’t see any oily patches appearing around 3pm.

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    Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Foundation Makeup SPF10
    This is the best full coverage foundation for oily skin, making it perfect for anyone who wants a completely flawless base – but it can be easily lightened up when mixed with a dot of moisturiser. What’s more, it mattifies skin and lasts all day and into the night, without smudging or needing any touch-ups at all.

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    Oxygenetix Oxygenating Breathable Foundation, £45 | Face The Future
    If blemishes are your biggest woes and you’ve not yet heard of Oxygenetix foundation, then your life is about to change for the better. In our opinion, this is the best foundation for oily skin and acne. Not only does it completely mask angry redness, but it also allows skin to breath (hence the name) so that you don’t have to worry about putting too much product on your already stressed skin.

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    BareMinerals Original Foundation SPF15, £26.10 | Feelunique
    Nothing really beats the best powder foundations when it comes to oil control, and bareMinerals’ is a timeless favourite for a reason – the mineral formula is completely non-comedogenic, so there’s no risk of pores becoming blocked, and still only contains five ingredients. It’s an icon for a reason.

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    It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Oil-Free Matte SPF 40, £32 | Cult Beauty
    OK not technically a foundation, but it might as well. We are huge, huge, fans of the original CC cream (as well as its illuminating sister), and this one doesn’t disappoint. It gives just the right amount of coverage – not too heavy, but more than a tinted moisturiser – and has the added benefit of covering up any redness caused by raging blemishes. In its formula, there are two types of clay, tea tree extract and oil-absorbing charcoal – so it treats as it covers.

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    Oily skin: how to get the best from your foundation

    Dr Ross Perry, cosmetic doctor and managing director of Cosmedics Skin Clinics, has words of caution when it comes to pairing oily and or acne-prone skin with make-up. He says it’s all in the prep: ‘Before thinking about make-up, review your skin regime. Getting the best cleanser and moisturiser for oily skin is key, so experiment to see what suits your skin,’ he says.

    ‘Don’t be tempted to ditch the moisturiser as your skin still needs hydration, but choose a formulation which suits oily skin,’ he continues. ‘Exfoliate regularly to remove excess sebum as well as dead skin cells.’ The best way to do this is with a chemical exfoliator (have a look at the best toner) or a physical gentle face scrub.

    It’s also worth looking at complimentary products – primers to control oil and keep your make-up where you want it, setting powders to control shine, and make-up setting sprays – as these will only help to keep your make-up looking perfect for longer.

    Next, evaluate what exactly you want from your foundation. A full-coverage formula will mask hyperpigmentation from previous breakouts, while something designed to mattify will keep your skin shine-free all day.

    Beauty Drawer

    Oilier skin types often get along well with powder-based foundations, like bareMinerals’ offering, while a liquid will glide on seamlessly and can strategically lock in oil. 

    Here are some of our go-to best foundations for oily skin…

    1. Giorgio Armani Power Fabric, £25.80 | Feelunique

    best foundation for oily skin with full coverage Giorgio Armani

    The sister to the iconic Armani Luminous Silk, this foundation lasts for hours and hours, offers great SPF protection, conceals pretty much every blemish and dark circle and locks down any excess sebum production. It’s a real all-rounder and an absolute must for oily skin.

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    2. Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup Cream, £28.50 | John Lewis

    best foundations for oily skin with acne Clinique

    This lightweight, oil-free formula conceals blemishes whilst actively tackling them and preventing them from returning. Plus, its cooling sensation and skin-soothing ingredients help to calm any angry breakouts and inflammation.

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    3. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, £27 | Harvey Nichols

    Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation - best foundation for oily skin

    A little goes a long way with Rihanna’s award-winning formula, giving a flawless, soft-matte coverage which you can tailor to your own coverage preferences. It glides onto the skin, and gives an airbrushed finish that’s perfectly in between matte and glowy – it just looks like skin. Believe us, the hype is real.

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    4. Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation, £34 | Cult Beauty

    Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation - best foundation for oily skin

    This foundation is indeed magic, and works for pretty much every skin type. We especially love it for oiliness – its semi-matte finish is down to oil-regulating technology – plus hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and SPF15 mean it gets to work on your skin throughout the day.

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    5. Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation, £51 | SpaceNK

    Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation - best foundation for oily skin

    Now, this one was completely designed for oily skin. Oil-free, non-comodogenic, and it transforms from a liquid to a powder upon contact with the skin. It absorbs oil during the day, and actually reduces the appearance of blemishes, pores and scaring.

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    Your oily-skin foundation woes are officially fixed. Shininess, be gone.

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