The best foundations for acne-prone skin
The bases that won’t irritate breakouts or bail after, like, one hour
Beauty Crew Beauty Writer / July 04 2018
Wearing foundation when you have acne can be a bit of a conundrum. While you want to cover-up your blemishes and hide redness, using the wrong foundation can clog up your pores even more, meaning more glorious pimples.
The worst offenders? Foundations that contain oil. Sydney dermatologist Dr Natasha Cook says, “When choosing makeup that will not cause or exacerbate acne breakouts, [you] should look for packaging that indicates the product will not clog pores and is oil-free, non-comedogenic, and/or non-acnegenic. Avoid makeup that contain oils like coconut oil, coco butter, vegetable oils, almond oil and mineral oils.”
“Additional cosmetic ingredients that can affect the mechanisms of acne pathogenesis and may contribute to a decrease in acne lesions, include lactic acid, triethyl acetate/ethyllineolate, and prebiotic plant extracts.”
Translated: If you don’t want to inflame any current breakouts and want to reduce the chances of future ones, look for the ingredients above.
Dr Cook also suggests looking for makeup products that are specifically formulated to help camouflage redness and pimples. “Anti-inflammatory ingredients and antioxidants are also used in some makeup products to reduce skin irritation and promote barrier repair, for example niacinamide.”
“Mineral-based cosmetics containing powdered formulas of titanium dioxide, and zinc oxide can be used to absorb oil, camouflage redness, and prevent irritation,” she says.
A tall order, maybe, but we’ve got you covered! No more pore-clogging, face-drying, skin-irritating formulas - these guys will give you clear, shine-free skin all day long. Huzzah!
#1 / Lycogel Breathable Camouflage Foundation
Originally formulated for post-procedure skin, Lycogel is the real deal when it comes to improving the appearance of acne-prone skin. It offers non-comedogenic benefits and it’s also loaded with a blend of 12 active ingredients (known as its LYCO-Complex) to support the healing and repair of skin, meaning less chance of sensitivity and acne scarring.
#2 / Oxygenetix Acne Control Foundation
Created by doctors in Los Angeles for sensitive post-treatment skin, you can just imagine how great this guy is for acne-prone skin that needs a little TLC. Enriched with soothing aloe vera, powerful salicylic acid and vitamin E, it works to stimulate collagen and new skin cell growth, while helping to heal blemishes and unblock pores.
#4 / Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup
#5 / Synergie Loose Mineral Foundation Second Skin Crush
#7 / Cover FX Natural Finish Oil-Free Foundation
Packed with vitamins, emollients and redness reducers, this oil-free foundation works to improve the skin’s texture and is gentle enough for the most sensitive skin types. Plus, it’s totally buildable, so you don’t have to worry about it looking too cakey.
#8 / Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Liquid Makeup
This long-lasting formula gives skin flawless-yet-natural coverage that still works to eliminate redness and shine, while concealing blemishes. It’s oil-free and non-acnegenic, so it doesn’t clog pores, but it doesn’t dry out the skin either. It also comes in 51 shades online, so it’s easy to find a good match for your skin tone!
#9 / Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation
#10 / Chantecaille Future Skin Oil Free Gel Foundation
This oil-free gel foundation has a unique lightweight texture and is formulated with a mix of chamomile, aloe and arnica to soothe sensitive skin and calm irritation. It also blurs the appearance of blemishes without looking cakey.
Now that you’ve got the right tools, it’s time to get the technique down pat! It’s important to keep in mind that you should always use a light hand and apply foundation gently to avoid irritating acne-prone skin. Dr Cook says, “It also is important… not to share… makeup brushes and applicators and to clean them weekly to ensure that bacteria, dead skin cells, and oil are not spread to the skin, which can lead to new breakouts.”
And remember: While your foundation can work to heal and conceal your breakouts, it’s always a good idea to keep a blemish-fighting solution in your bathroom cabinet to nix pimples overnight. We recommend using Dr Natasha Cook Cosmeceuticals Concentrated Spot Destroyer to stop breakouts in their tracks.
Battling with acne scars? Check out the top 5 scar-tackling treatments.
Have you tried any of these foundations? Let us know in the comment section below.
Erin Docherty is a Beauty Writer for BEAUTYcrew, Beauty Editor for Women's Health magazine and a Grooming Writer for Men's Health magazine. She has a keen interest in cosmeceutical skin care and is currently working on minimising her 9-step skin care routine – because ain’t nobody got time for that. When she’s not writing about the latest beauty news, or applying copious amounts of serum, you can find her spending all her money in Sephora.