When water-based foundations first hit the market, women went crazy for the stuff—they provided a less cakey, more natural-looking alternative to the oil-based or powder options of the decades prior. Equal parts weightless and buildable, these formulas are just as beloved to this day and keep getting better, especially if you're oil prone. A really good foundation depends heavily on how the texture works with your unique skin type.
Everyone loves a good glow, but if your oil glands are already over-producing, which results in a not-so-cute shiny t-zone, you want to stay away from super dewy foundations. Instead look for a matte, oil-free, water-based formula to balance-out your skin's oil production. From the drugstore hero to the most luxurious formulas in the game, ward off a shiny forehead with these H20-happy foundations.
1. Dior Forever 24h Wear Matte Foundation
Dior Forever 24h Wear Matte Foundation, $52
Introducing: An Instagram filter in a bottle. This foundation offers buildable-slash-medium coverage with a texture that feels velvety and smooth on your skin. The formula is full of pansy extract, which is a a super hydrating ingredient that will give dry skin a healthy glow.
2. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation
Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, $34
A Rihanna-approved foundation that diffuses every pore on your face and doesn't move all damn day? Yes, please. Not to mention that I use this foundation frequently, because my T-zone loves to get super shiny, and the bottle lasts me so long (!!!).
3. IT Cosmetics Confidence in a Foundation
IT Cosmetics Confidence in a Foundation, $32
This is the newest foundation the brand added to its lineup that beauty lovers can't stop talking about at the moment. Everyone's loving the silky-soft veil it leaves behind on the skin, covering dark spots, redness, and other ailments in seconds. Its oil-free blend of ingredients— ceramides, peptides, hydrolyzed collagen, hyaluronic acid and squalane—are all magic words when it comes to boosting moisture.
4. Too Faced Born This Way Foundation
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation, $39
The brand's most natural-looking foundation, this sheer, easy-to-blend cream will give you medium to full coverage depending on how you layer it. Oil-free and formulated with coconut water and hyaluronic acid to keep your skin moisturized, just be wary that it's not too too dewy or hydrating if you have suuuper oily skin.
5. Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15
Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15, $50
The mixture of hydrating and light-reflective elements in this Bobbi Brown formula will make your skin look especially dewy, plump, and radiant in the morning. It's a favorite of beauty fiends who want more of a lightweight, sheer finish.
6. Milk Makeup Blur Liquid Matte Foundation
Milk Makeup Blur Liquid Matte Foundation, $40
Milk Makeup's easy applicator uses a tip that minimizes any exposure to air (meaning your foundation will stay fresher than ever) and eliminates drips that waste your precious money. Making the K-beauty blurring trend easier than ever, the product uses light-diffusing technology to create a poreless, airbrushed effect.
7. Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation SPF 15
Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation, $70
This formula is expensive, but not for nothing as it really does deliver on its "post-facial glow" promise. Made with mineral from the deep waters of Bretagne (fancy!), it brightens the skin by reflecting light to eradicate facial shadows, resulting in a glowy soft focus finish.
8. Burberry Fresh Flow Luminous Fluid Base
Burberry Fresh Flow Luminous Fluid Base, $48
Burberry's illuminating pearlescent primer can be worn on its own or mixed with foundation to create a dewy glow that never reads too shiny or sparkly. If you're looking to add radiance to a dull winterized complexion before summer, this is your stuff.
9. MAC Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation
MAC Studio Waterweight SPF 30 Foundation, $36
Finding that happy medium between providing soft, yet solid coverage without drying out the skin, this water-like, gel-serum foundation works on ALL skin types and provides SPF 30 protection. Plus, it comes in a cool dropper bottle.
10. Cover FX Natural Finish Oil-Free Foundation
Cover FX Natural Finish Oil-Free Foundation, $42
In more than 20 shades, you're bound to find your perfect match with this super-blendable, long-wearing formula. It's also very concentrated, so a little bit of product goes a long way, ensuring you get all the bank for you buck.
11. Make Up For Ever Face & Body Liquid Makeup Foundation
Make Up For Ever Face & Body Liquid Makeup Foundation, $43
A beauty editor favorite, if you're in the market for au naturale day-to-day coverage, this is your stuff. It has that "your skin, but better" look down to a science with a water-based gel formula that blurs away imperfections while delivering sheer to medium matte coverage.
12. L'Oréal Paris True Match Super-Blendable Makeup
L'Oréal Paris True Match Super-Blendable Makeup , $11
This drugstore steal is notorious for being *amazing* for normal to very oily skin. Its fluid, silk-like texture goes on smoothly and will let your natural complexion show through while still diffusing uneven skin tone, blemishes, and T-zone shine. It also comes complete with SPF 17.
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