When it comes to foundations for combination skin, there is simply too many choices. What are the best foundations for combination skin? What kind of things should you consider before making a purchase decision? In this post, I will go over some common questions that people ask regarding foundations for combination skin.

What Is Combination Skin and How Do I know I have it?

Although the term combination skin may sound relatively unheard of, it is actually the most common skin type in women. Combination skin is essentially a combination of both dry and oily skin. Telltale signs of combination skin include women experiencing possible dryness in areas of the cheeks and neck while being oily in areas of the forehead, chin, and nose.

According to Dr. Mike Bell, dermatological expert for Boots in the United Kingdom, women who have combination skin can find their skin extremely oily during summers and equally dry during winters. During the fall and spring months, your skin can vary with the forehead being oily and cheeks being dry. Combination skin can result from many factors, such as heredity, weather, or even ingredients found in your everyday facial products.

The best way to decide whether or not you have combination skin is through a simple test that can be done at home. First, begin by removing all makeup and cleansing your face, then wait one hour. After the hour is up, blot your face using a facial tissue and examine for oil. For women who have oily skin, the tissue will appear to show blotches of oil on almost every part of your skin. For women who have dry skin, the tissue will appear to have little to no blotches of oil.

Moreover, for those who have combination skin, blotches of oil will appear on the tissue from blotting your forehead and nose. However, blotting the cheeks will leave the tissue with little or no oil on it. If your skin passes this simple test, it is likely that you may have combination skin. In any case, you should always consult a dermatologist to discuss future skincare product usage.

What Type of Foundation is Best for Combination Skin?

Those with combination skin have the option of choosing from two different foundation types, powder or liquid. Powder foundation is preferred for combination skin because it provides a matte look, while soaking up any excess oil from the face. However, for those looking for a dewier look, liquid foundation is a better option. Liquid foundation can illuminate your face, and if it is an oil-free liquid foundation, you don’t need to worry about excess oil buildup.

By choosing oil free foundation, women with combination skin can provide oil control in areas such as the forehead, while hydrating your dry cheeks. According to Molly R. Stern, who is a makeup artist for celebrities, women with combination skin may have a hard time finding the perfect shade of foundation that provides both oil control and total coverage. Therefore, she suggests combining two different shades of oil-free foundation that complement your natural skin tone.

In addition, using mineral makeup is also a good choice for combination skin, as it soaks up any oil on your face. Mineral makeup results in a matte finish, but there are other mineral-based foundation options for those seeking a dewier look.

Best Foundations For Combination Skin

Below are my foundation recommendations for combination skin. I always keep a budget in mind and my selections here are good quality and affordable.

1) Revlon Colorstay Makeup For Combination/Oily Skin – If you think you can’t get a decent low-cost foundation  for your combination skin, you need to check this one out. This water based foundation is lightweight and provides full day medium coverage. You can literally find this foundation everywhere. It’s good for casual, everyday applications. It provides a full day coverage and it’s matte.

Tip: Use a sponge applicator for best results!

2) Shimarz Foundation Professional Face Makeup – Looking for combination skin foundation that is organic and healthy? Take a look at this one from Shimarz. This foundation does not contain harmful chemicals like parabens and lead. It is gluten free and SPF 15. I love natural ingredients because they also work nicely with sensitive skin. It does have a smell to it though but it’s not very strong.

3) Clinique Even Better Makeup –  This liquid foundation is pretty good for it’s price. It is oil-free and SPF 15. I would recommend this foundation to anyone with more dry patches than oily patches. Clinique is great brand and quite popular among my clients. I love this foundation because it glides on easily. I haven’t had any problems with breakouts with this foundation so far.

Tips for Applying Foundation If You have Combination Skin

A thorough cleanse before applying foundation is extremely important for those who have combination skin. Cleansing before a makeup routine can help to unclog pores and get rid of any excess oil that may be on the skin. Moreover, cleansing devices along with cleansers can yield even better results, look for something with vibrating bristles. Such devices can provide exfoliation to the skin on a level you may not be able to reach using just your hands.

Furthermore, according to expert makeup artists, proper skin preparation is essential to gaining a smooth and total coverage foundation application. It is suggested that you begin your makeup routine with a water based moisturizer so that it can soak up any preliminary oil you may have on your skin. When using a water- based moisturizer, you don’t run the risk of excess oil being added to your skin as you would with other non-water based moisturizers. Since water contains no oil, applying this type of moisturizer helps to reduce the size of pores and minimizes fine lines.

Moreover, you should use oil blotting tissues through the day in order to maintain your foundation, oil blotting tissues don’t mess with your foundation setting! Another important thing to keep in mind if you have combination skin is to avoid heavy setting or highlighting powders with sheen.

I know that highlighting and baking is a very popular makeup trend these days, but it is best avoided if you have combination skin. If you’re interested in baking or highlighting it is best to find a powder that is loose and matte, this will help to soak up extra facial oils.

Which Foundation Ingredients Is Best For Combination Skin?

According to Beverly Hills dermatologist Dr. Rhonda Rand, choosing a foundation with polyhydroxy acids is best for those with combination skin. These acids can help lift your skin for a healthier glow, and work to fight off any acne causing bacteria that may be hiding in your skin.

It is best to pick foundations that have built-in cleansing ingredients such as sodium lauryl sulfate, which trap oils and keep your skin clean throughout the day. Speaking of cleansing, you should also focus on buying foundations with anti pore-clogging materials.

Having clog-free pores at the end of your day is just as important as having cleansed skin. Look out for foundations which have mineral oil as an active ingredient. Mineral oil, unlike normal oils, acts as a barrier between dirt and oil, preventing them from settling in your pores and reducing the likelihood of excess oil appearing on the face.

Furthermore, it is extremely important to look out for foundations with SPF. This will ensure that your skin is protected from the sun and provides a balance of moisture to your skin throughout the day.

When your foundation is exposed to heat from the sun, it can feel like it’s melting. By purchasing and using a foundation with SPF, your skin will be protected from UVB and UVA rays. In addition to maintaining your foundation’s integrity, SPF also protects your skin from harmful exposure.

The following video provides a great step-by-step skincare routine that those with combination skin should follow.