These Transfer-Resistant Foundations Won't Budge (and Don't Look Cakey)

Updated 12/08/19

Getty Images/Graphic by Cristina Cianci

In high school, I always feared hugging a friend or love interest would result in streaking their clothes or skin with foundation. Then, of course, the world would end. While I've become slightly less dramatic with age, I still don't want to go around getting my foundation on unsuspecting people (or clothing I'm trying on or my sunglasses or my phone). 

Enter these transfer-resistant foundations. They provide long-lasting coverage that looks fresh all day and won't rub off all over the items your face comes into contact with.

Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation
Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation $35
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Only the teeniest drop of this foundation is needed for medium-to-full coverage. Once applied, it stays put until it's time to wash your face at the end of the day.

 

Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation
Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation $34
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There is literally nothing Rihanna can't do. This matte foundation comes in a whopping 40 shades, and once it dries down, you better believe that it's not going anywhere. We highly recommend you use either a brush or a makeup sponge to apply it since using your fingers doesn't quite yield the same natural-looking results.

 

Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation
Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation $43
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A ride-or-die foundation for the ages. This classic liquid foundation glides onto your face like a second skin, gently buffing away imperfections like a Snapchat filter IRL. The end result: a natural finish that won't transfer to your shirt collar.

Too Faced Peach Perfect Comfort Matte Foundation
Too Faced Peach Perfect Comfort Matte Foundation $36
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Over 1500 five-star reviews on Sephora don't lie. This medium-coverage matte foundation is one of the best long-lasting, transfer-resistant formulas out there. Reviewers say that it helps control oil without feeling heavy and that it stays on all day.

Urban Decay All Nighter Liquid Foundation
Urban Decay All Nighter Liquid Foundation $40
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This foundation does not come to play. It's full-coverage, waterproof, and super pigmented (read: you only need a tiny bit for an airbrushed look that lasts all day—or night).

Maybelline New York Super Stay Full Coverage Foundation
Maybelline New York Super Stay Full Coverage Foundation $12
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An oil-free foundation that gives natural-looking coverage. The formula is on the thicker side, so it takes a bit of blending, but once applied, you could try on hundreds of shirts without accidentally getting foundation smudges all over them.

Yves Saint Laurent All Hours Longwear Natural Matte Foundation
Yves Saint Laurent All Hours Longwear Natural Matte Foundation $54
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Can a foundation be sultry? Yes, if it's from YSL. The creamy, light formula is a dream to apply, and it also contains black tea.

Key Ingredients

Black tea is a type of tea that is more oxidized than other teas, thereby contributing to its darker color and stronger flavor. Black tea's high concentration of antioxidants and caffeine is believed to protect skin from environmental damage and make skin brighter, firmer, and less puffy.

Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation
Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation $56
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This foundation is infused with kaolinite clay, which helps soak up excess oil and keeps skin looking fresh all day. It also has over 1800 five-star reviews on Sephora to back up its long-wear claims.

Key Ingredients

Kaolin clay (aka China clay) is a naturally occurring clay mineral. It is gentler than other clay varieties, and when applied to the skin, is known to reduce oiliness, inflammation, and redness.

Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup
Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup $42
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A lightweight foundation that lives up to its name. It simply does not budge. Once applied, it dries down to a matte—but not chalky—finish. Plus, it comes in over 55 shades.

e.l.f. Cosmetics HD Mattifying Cream Foundation
E.l.f. Cosmetics HD Mattifying Cream Foundation $6
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You don't have to spend the equivalent of six pumpkin spice lattes to get a long-lasting foundation. The proof: this $6 find from E.l.f. The cream formula dries down to a powdery finish that doesn't feel heavy and won't end up all over your phone screen.

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