by Alexandra Nicole Nuralam

The Best Foundations for Every Skin Type

nars sheer glow foundation
Image via @gelcream

Finding a foundation that works for you can be really tricky. Even if you’ve figured out which shade suits you perfectly, there are a slew of other concerns — texture, formula, finish, and coverage, not to mention the possibility of breakouts.

Many beauty brands have been diversifying their shade range recently, but undertones can be a big issue for Asian skin. Yellow-based foundations tend to suit our skin tone better than those with a pink base, so that’s another thing to keep in mind while shopping around for base makeup.

When it comes to choosing a shade, test the colours by blending them into your jawline slightly (no, swatching on your hand won’t cut it). Look at the results under natural lighting; if the foundation disappears, you’ve found your match. The secret is trying before buying. Head to a Sephora to test out different shades of various brands before you decide. 

It’s impossible to find a one-size-fits-all foundation; some people have oily skin while others have drier skin types. You’re going to have to do some research to work out which one will work for your skin type. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of foundations that work best for different skin types, for your research purposes. Keep reading ahead.

For dry skin

Matte finishes will be your enemy—think foundation clinging to dry patches, which would make your skin look uneven and patchy. Go for hydrating, creamier formulas for a dewy complexion. Alternatively, you can try BB creams too. They’re popular because they multi-task: sheer wash coverage, with moisturizer and sun protection. If you’re having a good skin day, a BB cream can just work for you. You can skip both moisturizer and base makeup altogether.

burberry BB cream
Burberry Fresh Glow BB Cream, SGD72
NARS cushion foundation
NARS Aqua Glow Cushion Foundation (Refill), SGD52

For oily skin

If you have to break out blotting papers by noon, matte finishes would be the smart choice for you. These matte, long-wearing foundations will keep your skin clear and shine-free all day.

Bobbi Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation
Bobbi Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF 15, SGD76
MAC Cosmetics Studio Fix Fluid Foundation
MAC Cosmetics Studio Fix Fluid SPF 15 Foundation, SGD59

For combination skin

Combination skin is one of the trickier skin types; you need a multi-tasking product that evolves with your dry-oily skin needs. Satin finishes are perfect; not too matte and drying, but still has some oil-fighting properties.

Shiseido Synchro Skin Self-Refreshing Foundation
Shiseido Synchro Skin Self-Refreshing Foundation, SGD74
Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra Longwear Foundatio
Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra Longwear Foundation, SGD80

For sensitive skin

If your skin is on the sensitive side, then you already know that finding the perfect foundation can be like navigating a minefield. Pat on the wrong formula, and you never know what you’re going to get— breakouts, hives, redness, irritation. These gentle products will indulge even the most of sensitive skin types, thanks to soothing formulas filled with ingredients like hyaluronic acid.

Hourglass Veil Fluid Makeup
Hourglass Veil Fluid Makeup, SGD100
Cover FX Pressed Mineral Foundation
Cover FX Pressed Mineral Foundation, SGD58

For acne-prone skin

If you’re battling acne, foundation can be a double-edged sword—can’t live with it, can’t live without it. While it may be hard to believe, there are products that will work for acne-prone skin. It’s important to look for a lightweight formula that has minimal ingredients, and it’s best if it is non-comedogenic.

Too Faced Born This Way Foundatio
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation, SGD61
NARS Sheer Glow Foundation
NARS Sheer Glow Foundation, SGD74

For ageing skin

Mature skin needs a good anti-aging foundation that will hydrate, plump, and make the complexion look glowy without settling into creases or fine lines. If it also happens to have skincare components, then that’s just an added bonus.

La Mer The Soft Fluid Long Wear Foundation
La Mer The Soft Fluid Long Wear Foundation SPF20, SGD190
Armani Beauty Luminous Silk Fluid Foundation
Armani Beauty Luminous Silk Fluid Foundation, SGD90