The Best Foundations for Dry Skin -- Giorgio Armani, Maybelline, Hourglass and More
By Megan McIntyre
Each product has been selected and reviewed by our editorial team; however, we may receive affiliate commissions from some links to the products on this page. Prices listed are subject to change by the retailer. Promotions in this article are subject to availability, expiration and other terms as determined by partner.
The goal of foundation is to create a complexion that appears smooth, even-toned and poreless. Unfortunately, when you have dry skin, this becomes a case study in “easier said than done.”
Those prone to dryness have less oil on their skin and can have a weaker moisture barrier, which locks in hydration. This often leads to a rough texture, flakes, redness and more pronounced fine lines. Layer on the wrong foundation and those problems become even more noticeable as the makeup settles into cracks and builds up on dry patches, which -- let’s face it -- kind of defeats the whole point of foundation.
Fortunately, there are solutions for those of us lacking in the hydration department. Many new foundations are a hybrid of skincare and cosmetics, providing nourishing and moisturizing benefits alongside their complexion-perfecting powers. And they come in a variety of coverage options, applications, textures and finishes.
Below, the absolute best foundations for dry skin.
Beloved by makeup artists and beauty editors alike, this red-carpet favorite lives up to its rep with a smooth-as-silk formula that transforms skin and hides imperfections, all while giving a lit-from-within glow.
The OG makeup-skincare hybrid, this classic tinted moisturizer just got a major update. Now available in 20 shades, it’s infused with nourishing oils from macadamia and kukui seeds, plus antioxidants, SPF and glycerin (for lightweight hydration). The end result is a sheer hint of coverage that helps improve skin health and strengthen your natural moisture barrier over time.
Maybelline's Fit Me collection of foundations is hands-down one of the best values for high-quality face makeup, and this hydrating version does not disappoint. Its glycerin-based formula moisturizes any rough patches to create a uniformly silky look and feel.
Don’t let the fact that this foundation is also a face oil intimidate you. It fuses three types of mineral pigments into a base of active botanical oils that are skin-moisturizing and a much more pore-friendly (and eco-friendly!) smoothing alternative to silicone. Shake it up and spread it on for a dose of healthy hydration.
Iconic makeup artist Pat McGrath is the unofficial queen of skin, so you better believe that her own foundation is the best of the best. Spanning 36 shades, the futuristic formula features pigments treated with amino acids, making it creamy and easy to build. It also contains polymers to provide longwear capabilities and luminosity as well as a Vita-serum complex to moisturize and minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Try it and you’ll be obsessed with how good your skin looks.
Stick foundation tends to get a bad rap, mostly because of its reputation for being old-fashioned and cakey. Well, that was then, and this Hourglass stick is now. This full-coverage stick magically conceals without feeling heavy or looking spackled on, and it provides maximum coverage with minimum product.
Equal parts skincare and makeup, this serum foundation is infused with antioxidant desert date oil, plus skin-nutritive sweet almond and macadamia oils. It gives skin a velvety look and feel -- without looking heavy.
Each product has been selected, and each product’s style has been reviewed, by our editorial team; however, we may receive affiliate commissions from some links to products on this page. Prices listed are subject to change by the retailer.