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Foundation: It’s not just for your face. Whether you’re looking to conceal a cut, bruise, bug bite, or just generally make your skin look better, body makeup is where it’s at. “It’s the perfect way to cover up any type of imperfections,” says Nydia Figueroa, a professional makeup artist, and VaultBeauty member, who adds that it’s also choice for hiding tattoos. Plus, it can be used all over the body, perfect not only for arms and legs but also for your chest and back. When it comes to application, Figueroa suggests gradually build-up coverage with layers, first stippling a small amount over the skin with a wedge sponge. If you need a little extra coverage, add another layer, this time tapping it in with a flat foundation or concealer brush, she says.
Ready for flawless skin from head to toe? These are the best body makeup products out there.
Best Overall: MAC Cosmetics Studio Face & Body Foundation
“This formula is amazing for evening out your skin tone,” says Figueroa. “It has sheer coverage, and provides a satin finish while also being hydrating.” And, true to its name, the versatile and creamy consistency works just as well on the face as it does on the body, a great choice for anyone who wants to keep their product stash minimal and streamlined.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Make Up For Ever Water Blend Face & Body Foundation
Figueroa is also a fan of this option, “a beautiful, gel-based formula that blends seamlessly into skin and doesn’t feel heavy.” (Credit its 80% water content, which makes for a hydrating and lightweight feel.) Like the MAC pick, it too can be used on both face and body and imparts a natural-looking radiance.
Best Drugstore: Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs Makeup
A true classic, this spray-on is affordable, buildable, and delivers impressive-looking coverage—what more could you ask for? Spritz on one sheer coat for a subtle hint of color, or layer more if you need full-on coverage. Either way, it’s water- and transfer-resistant and dries extremely quickly (yet still washes off easily).
Best Airbrushed Effect: Vita Liberata Body Blur Instant HD Skin Finish
One of the more subtle options, think of this more as BB cream than a full-on foundation. It comes in four shades, all of which deliver just a sheer wash of color and plenty of radiance—the perfect combo to help conceal scars, blemishes, and even cellulite. Happy reviewers rave about how well it works to create an airbrushed effect.
Best Water-Resistant: Westmore Beauty Body Coverage Perfector
Perfect for summer days, this pick both covers and leaves skin with a beautiful sheen. The application process is a little bit more involved, though well worth it since the coverage lasts up to 24 hours. Massage it into the desired areas, then gently pat it with a tissue to remove any excess product. Let it dry for two to three minutes, then repeat with another coat if needed.
Best Sheer Coverage: Fenty Beauty Body Lava Body Luminizer
A gel-based body highlighter, this comes in four universal shades, all of which are packed with light-diffusing micro-pearls that make for a stunningly radiant finish. The point being, it’s not going to give you the coverage you need to hide noticeable imperfections, but it is ideal if you want extra-glowy skin all over.
Best Full Coverage: DERMABLEND Leg and Body Makeup
“This is my favorite product for covering up veins on the legs or tattoos. It does not budge, and never looks cakey or heavy on the skin,” says Figueroa. The coverage is full-on (a little goes a long way, and it’s definitely best to apply it with a makeup sponge), and, to the point of its long-wearing prowess, can last up to 16 hours. We also appreciate that it comes in a nice array of 12 shades.
Best for Uneven Skin Tone: St. Tropez One Night Only Finishing Body Gloss
If you don’t need full-on coverage, but just want a little something to make your arms and legs look, well, better, try this guy. As the name suggests, it offers just the tiniest bit of bronze color and a high-shine finish, all it takes to instantly even out blotchy skin. It works great on its own, though it’s also the perfect product to layer over the existing self-tanner to freshen up the color.
Best for Dry Skin: Sugar Baby Radiance Wash Off Bronzing Moisturizer Cream
If your skin is dry, body makeup can often only accentuate patchiness and flakes. Enter this option, truly more of a tinted moisturizer than anything else. It packs plenty of hydration, thanks to the addition of aloe vera, sweet almond oil, shea butter, and vitamin E, along with mineral-based pigments that add the perfect amount of natural glow and coverage. It’s an Amazon fan favorite, with reviewers pointing out how well it works on a variety of skin tones, how nicely it lasts, and how little you need to get the desired result.
Best for Touch-Ups: Dermablend Quick Fix Body Foundation Stick
We love foundation sticks for the face, and the same appreciation extends to foundation sticks for the body. Like the other Dermablend option on this list, this creamy stick formula also packs a mega-hit of coverage and lasts up to 16 hours. The portable size makes it easy to keep on-hand whenever you need to quickly conceal a small area of imperfection.
Best Shade Range: Era Beauty Flawless Airbrushed Skin
As a general rule of thumb, most body makeup doesn’t come in a ton of shades, which is partially what makes this option so noteworthy. There are 10 hues to choose from, all of which have different undertones, making it even easier to find your perfect match. The spray is also full-coverage though feels lightweight (and is oil-free, so it never looks or feels greasy, either).
Best for Daily Use: Jergens BB Body Perfecting Skin Cream
Whereas most body makeup is often used as a one-time thing, we like that this pick can be used daily to continuously improve the look of skin. You instantly get lots of hydration and a beautiful glow; keep using it and over the course of a few days it will improve skin tone, firmness, and minimize the look of imperfections. To that point, it’s also a great choice for someone who doesn’t want to use full-on body makeup but does want something more than standard body lotion. The affordable price tag is just a bonus.
Body makeup can go a long way towards making all your exposed skin look flawless and gorgeous. The MAC Cosmetics Studio Face and Body Foundation and the Make Up For Ever Water Blend Face & Body Foundation are two of our all-time favorites. Both boast a lightweight consistency, easily buildable coverage, and can be used on the face and body. If you’re just trying to make your legs look better, you can’t go wrong with the Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs Makeup, a spray-on that has legions of devoted fans (and rings in at a very affordable price).
What to Look For In A Body Makeup
Water-Resistant or Waterproof
Even if you’re not going to be sporting the body makeup during a beach or pool day, Figueroa advises looking for these criteria to ensure the product’s long-lasting staying power.
Most body makeups have some shimmer in them, but just how much can vary greatly. So think about whether you want a ‘J-Lo just back from the beach’-esque glow, or something more subtle and natural.
While you do have more wiggle room when it comes to finding the perfect match of body makeup than you do for your face, you still want to find a hue that’s pretty close to your natural skin tone to make sure it blends in well. Top tip: If it’s a bit too dark, try sheering it out with some plain body moisturizer.
Why Trust Byrdie?
Byrdie contributor Melanie Rud has over a decade of experience in the beauty industry, writing for some of the biggest magazines and websites out there. Even though her makeup routine is generally fairly minimal, she always uses body makeup on special occasions.
Meet the Expert
Nydia Figueroa is a beauty expert and professional makeup artist in the New York/New Jersey area, and the owner of Faces By Nydia Makeup Studio. Her work has appeared frequently in editorial shoots, as well as major fashion shows. She’s a member of VaultBeauty, an app that helps connect makeup artists with clients.
According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find enough body makeup from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will evaluate the product ASAP.