10 Water-Based Foundations for the Oil-Averse

Updated 02/06/18

Getty Images/Graphic by Cristina Cianci

Searching for a foundation that is perfect for you can be a difficult feat; it may seem next to impossible to sift through the thousands of options out there that meet your specific needs. Will it last all day? Will it make your face look caked-on? Will it make your skin break out? Water-based foundations answer all of these questions. The “your skin but better” look they give is weightless, buildable, long lasting, and ultimately won’t clog your pores. There are bonus benefits if your skin tends to be oily, too.

We’ve rounded up our favorite water-based foundations so you don’t have to—click through to check them out.

Along with being super hydrating and long lasting, Tarte’s foundation blurs fine lines and blemishes on the surface of your skin and comes with built in SPF 15. Your skin will be left glowing and flawless for up to 12 hours.

Make Up For Ever Water Blend Face & Body Foundation ($43)

Make Up For Ever is famous for its high-performance foundations, so it’s to be expected that its 80% water-based foundation does wonders for your skin. Because it’s so lightweight, you can customize your coverage and get the exact look you want with a dewy and youthful glow.

To achieve a glow like no other, opt for Stila’s water-based foundation. The ionized qualities of this foundation work to blur any blemishes, and after wearing it for 12 hours, your skin will be left more moisturized and youthful.

If you aren’t looking for a dewy look but still want to get coverage, Nyx’s Total Control foundation is the one for you. The velvety matte finish of this foundation can be achieved with each drop of product onto your skin and blending it in with a brush, Beautyblender or even your fingers. You can achieve any level of coverage with this foundation at half the cost of its competition.

MAC’s innovative water-gel serum foundation smooths the appearance of your skin while maintaining its coverage and comfort all day long. To add to the list of benefits you get from this foundation, it controls oily skin and moisturizes your skin all day long.

Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation ($66)

Treat yourself to this mineral rich foundation with botanical extracts. This foundation works to condition your skin while smoothing and covering imperfections, staying comfortable and weightless all day long. The buildable formula of this foundation is perfect for those who want to look more natural one day and a little more glam the next. 

Finally, the buildable, blurring, perfecting drugstore foundation you’ve been looking for. L’Oréal’s formula works to match your skin tone perfectly and gives you the control you need to get the exact amount of coverage you’ve been looking for in a foundation. Complete with vitamins A and C, your skin will be left healthy and nourished with all-day coverage. 

Cover FX Natural Finish Foundation ($40) 

We can’t talk about this foundation without mentioning that it’s available in 40 shades. Not to mention its buildable formulation offers a lightweight, silky finish to the skin. No caked-on look here, thanks to this hydrating blend that focuses on matching your skin’s undertones. 

There’s nothing better than a foundation that doubles as a serum. You can feel good about lathering this silky water-based foundation on your face because its ingredients are equally nourishing. Made of lychee, bamboo grass, and cordyceps mushroom extracts, this not only works to create a flawless veil over your skin, but also adds radiance for a youthful-looking glow—win-win.

Milk Makeup Blur Liquid Matte Foundation ($40)

First off, we must address this innovative tube that controls air from getting into your foundation and extends the lifespan of your foundation. Its airless will keep your foundation fresh for longer than usual. Infused with powder-filled spheres that diffuse light, this filter-like finish will warrant a selfie (or two).

Looking for more on foundation? We’ve rounded up the best drugstore foundations for people with oily skin. Check them out here.

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