We’ve found the best foundations for dry skin - for every budget, to help you on your way to a flawless finish...
Finding the perfect foundation for your skin type can be tricky at the best of times - there are so many finishes and formulas on the market now that navigating them is a huge challenge. Throw dryness into the mix, and finding the right one for you can become a quagmire.
The issues when applying foundation to dry skin are multiple: from a caked finish to exacerbating flaking skin to emphasising patches of dryness and fine lines, put the wrong foundation on it, and you can end up making things look a whole lot worse - and end up feeling self-conscious while out and about as a result.
Enter this guide, in which you'll find the best foundations for dry skin with a whole range of different coverages and finishes for every budget. None of them will end up making your face feel tight or be slurped up by your skin after a day's wear, we promise.
Once you've selected your base, try playing with the finish by applying a primer before you put your foundation on, or by adding a layer of serum to up the luminosity of your skin. Also, if you favour a BB cream or a CC cream during the day because the idea of a fuller base makes you nervous, try swiping one of the foundations onto patches that need a little more coverage, and then build it up where you need extra.
Another key factor in keeping your skin juicy while wearing a foundation is the atmosphere - even the most moisturising of formulas won't hold its own when under air conditioning or out on a wind-whipped walk. To top up your moisture levels if you're facing drying air conditions, spritz on a hydrating face mist at intervals and tap serum on top of your base to revive it.
And now to our edit of the best foundations for dry skin...
1. MAC Next To Nothing Face Colour, £27
It translates as more of a BB cream on the skin, but offers slightly more coverage - roughly two layers equates to a thin layer of a medium-coverage foundation. It's so perfect for day-to-day, delivers a shot of moisture to parched skin, and ensures you stay glowing all day long.
Available at | 38.99
2. MAKE UP FOR EVER Water Blend Foundation, £27.00
This super-sheer foundation is 80% water, so you know it's going to hydrate your skin like no other. Perfect for creating a soft veil of coverage, it makes the skin look more even naturally and gives a gorgeous luminosity. It's the ideal holiday or good-skin-day product.
Available at | 27.00
3. NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, £32
This weightless and silky formula is buildable without looking like you’re caked in make-up. For the best finish, apply this one with a flat brush, sweeping it onto your face.
Nars available at | 32.00
4. The Body Shop Moisture Foundations SPF 15, £13
A brilliant bargain, this best-selling formula is lightweight yet still provides SPF protection along with a flawless finish. Try swiping this onto your nose, cheeks, chin and forehead and blending it out with a buffing brush.
Available at | 13.00
5. Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Foundation, £36.40
Benefit's new foundation has taken the beauty world by storm for good reason: this is balmy, but doesn't contain any oils that might make skin look greasy over the course of a day.
Available at | 36.40
6. MAC Cosmetics Studio Face And Body Foundation, £22
In every make-up artists pro kit, MAC's Face And Body formula is conditioning and the finish is sheer but buildable for more coverage. Ideal for holidays as it's long-wearing and resistant to water.
MAC available at | 23.50
7. By Terry Terrybly Densiliss Foundation, £79
A must-have for those concerned with ageing, this foundation tackles fine lines and sun spots whilst masking them. It somehow manages to feel incredibly moisturising and lightweight while still boasting some serious coverage. If you want your makeup to double as skincare, then you absolutely need this.
Available at | 79.00
8. Elizabeth Arden Flawless Finish Perfectly Nude Make-Up, £29
Clinically proven to moisturise skin for 24 hours, Elizabeth Arden's foundation creates a healthy, luminous finish while smoothing imperfections and eradicating flaws in one fell swoop.
Available at | 29.00
9. Suqqu Extra Rich Cream Foundation, £65
This foundation feels exactly how it promises. Super luxurious, it practically melts into the skin (a cocktail of 12 natural skincare ingredients will do that) and above all, delivers a shot of moisture to parched skin.
Clinique available at | 65.00
10. Chanel Vitalumiere Satin Smoothing Fluid Make-Up, £38.20
Want a dewy flawless look? Chanel's Vitalumiere is the one for you. Brightening dull, dry complexions, it gives a luminous finish and contains extra moisturising properties to keep skin feeling comfortable all day long.
Chanel available at | 38.20
11. Bobbi Brown Extra Spf 25 Tinted Moisturising Balm, £39
This Bobbi Brown foundation is a favourite among those with dry skin. The formula is rich and creamy and will strengthen the skin's moisture barrier for a quick fix of comfort as well as offering longterm skincare benefits. As if that weren't enough, it also contains SPF.
Available at | 39.00
12. BareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Cream, £27.05
This bareMinerals' number is a wonder product. As well as giving a natural glowing coverage and colour, the revolutionary gel cream formula has ah-mazing skincare benefits thanks to the hydration thagt's been packed into the formula.
bareMinerals available at | 27.05
13. Armani Beauty Maestro Fusion Make-Up, £40
Armani's Maestro foundation has a dreamy texture. Smooth and easily blendable, once on, expect your skin to be sporting a lot of glow without any t-zone shine thanks to the light matte finish.
Armani available at | 40.00
14. Dior Diorskin Forever Undercover Foundation, £34
If you have dry skin but prefer a velvety matte finish and don't want to use a powder to achieve it, get your hands on this. It won't settle into dry patches but will refract and reflect light while remaining firmly on the more matte side of things.
Available at | £34
15. Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation Serum, £45
Part serum and part foundation, this offers a wash of unifying colour and an SPF 30 to boot, making it an easy swipe-on-in-the-morning foundation.
Available at | £45
16. Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation, £35
This one's ultra lightweight and makes for a lovely, dewy wash of colour. Apply a second layer over any areas where you'd like extra coverage - it builds really well.