What Foundation Should I Use For Dry Skin?

makeup application

If you have dry skin, the last thing you need is a foundation that will make your skin feel drier. It can flake off with your dry skin as the day wears on. Thankfully, these tips will help you have the flawless finish that you want and help you figure out what foundation should I use for dry skin?

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Make Sure To Use A Proper Skincare Routine

If you’re not using moisturizer, your skin is already dryer than it has to be. Gone are the days when we thought moisturizer was terrible for us and caused breakouts. Now, it’s a necessary part of every skincare routine. You should apply moisturizer for dry skin before you put on your primer. 

Utilize A Skincare Routine For Dry Skin Before Applying Foundation

Your skincare routine lays the proper foundation for flawless makeup application. Exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells so they won’t flake off throughout the day, and your makeup won’t flake off with them. Cleansers designed for dry skin help moisturize and soothe skin. Moisturizers deliver a powerful punch of hydrating ingredients and create a barrier on your skin to help lock in moisture. Making sure you have the right products is essential to creating a smooth canvas for the foundation. 

Look For Hydrating Ingredients

When searching for a foundation for dry skin, you’ll come across plenty of different foundations, all of which boast potent ingredients like hyaluronic acid. It’s important to know what those ingredients are and how they can help your dry skin to ensure that you pick the perfect foundation for your skin. These are just a few hydrating ingredients to keep an eye out for when shopping for a foundation for dry skin. 


Squalene is a slippery liquid that feels a bit like oil. It is naturally found in plants, animals, human sebum, or the oil on your face. It delivers a dose of hydration to parched skin cells. 

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic acid is another slippery substance that naturally occurs in the body. It’s been discovered in joints because it helps keep things lubricated and moving smoothly. So, what does it do when it is in skincare? Hyaluronic acid is known for being able to hold plenty of water. The Cleveland Clinic states, “A quarter teaspoon of hyaluronic acid holds about one and a half gallons of water.”

It helps keep the skin hydrated and promotes elasticity, and because it can hold so much water, products with hyaluronic acid can deliver hydration that lasts all day long. 


Ceramides do little to hydrate the skin, but they have an essential purpose: this ingredient helps skin cells bind together to form a protective layer. This skin barrier helps your skin retain moisture, making ceramides an essential ingredient in beauty products for dry skin. 


Glycerin is known as a humectant. This ingredient pulls moisture from the air surrounding you, helping your dry skin get the most out of humid air. Then, other ingredients that form a protective layer lock that moisture into the skin for hydration that lasts. 


Aloe is another humectant that draws moisture into the skin. It’s also known for making dry skin feel more elastic, relieving severely dry skin. 

Alpha Hydroxy Acids

Alpha Hydroxy Acids are best known for exfoliating away dead skin cells to reveal a smooth, even texture underneath. However, they also help the skin hold onto moisture, making them an essential ingredient in beauty products designed for dry skin. 

Skincare Products For Dry Skin

Fresh Honey Cleansing Foam by Hey Honey ($12-29)

A honey cleansing foam that washes away dirt and bacteria while hydrating dry skin. Honey then helps create a barrier to lock in moisture for a soothing feeling that lasts all day long! 

Why We Love It

Honey is a powerful ingredient that works wonders for dry skin, but that’s not the only good thing about this honey foaming cleanser. We also love that:

  • It’s great for acne-prone and sensitive skin
  • A little goes a long way
  • Cruelty-free company
  • It’s paraben free
  • It leaves the skin feeling refreshed and hydrated

Check it out here! 

Remove Dead Skin With Tape 

Before you start applying your makeup, get out some Scotch tape. Put a small piece on areas of your face that are particularly dry. Then, peel it off. 

When you have dry skin, you’re more likely to have dead skin cells on top of your skin. This can make your makeup look patchy and wear off sooner. Removing those dead skin cells can help you have longer-lasting makeup. 

Opt For Liquid And Cream Formulas

Powder foundation is not necessarily bad for dry skin. It does nothing to help it, either. Instead, you want a formula that will hydrate your skin as the day goes on. Make sure you choose a water-based foundation for an extra dose of hydration that your skin desperately needs. 

Foundations For Dry Skin

Cover FX Total Cover Cream Foundation ($42)

This creamy foundation slides across your skin, instantly providing soothing relief to the skin while concealing an uneven skin tone and promoting hydration. 

Why We Love It

This foundation is like a cross between a concealer and a foundation. The creamy formula blends seamlessly into the skin for flawless coverage and easy application. We also love that it’s:

  • Available in over 40 shades
  • Packed with vitamins to fight free radical damage
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Squalene locks in moisture
  • Specially formulated to restore the skin’s natural barrier 

Check it out here!

Smooth Liquid Camo Hydrating Foundation by Dermablend ($38)

This matte foundation delivers seamless coverage that easily blends into the skin for a natural appearance. It’s available in plenty of shades to make sure that you can find something to suit your skin tone. 

Why We Love It

We love so many things about this medium-coverage foundation for dry skin that it’s hard to name just one or two! You’ll love that it’s:

  • Provides up to 16 hours of smudge-proof wear
  • Buildable, so you can enjoy more coverage if you need it
  • Doesn’t cake up
  • SPF 25
  • Hydration that lasts all day long
  • Vegan

Check it out here!

E.l.f. Flawless Satin Foundation ($6)

Flawless Satin Foundation by e.l.f. Cosmetics never seems to stop trending. It’s a budget-friendly foundation for dry skin that everyone loves, and there are plenty of reasons why!

Why We Love It

This affordable foundation is one of e.l.f. Cosmetic’s best sellers. It goes viral over and over again. It’s a luxury product at a drugstore price. We love it because: 

  • It’s available in 40 shades
  • It’s vegan and cruelty-free
  • The semi-matte finish is flawless
  • It offers great coverage
  • Blendable
  • Buildable

Check it out here!

PHYTO Pigments Flawless Serum Foundation by Juice Beauty ($44)

Juice Beauty is a vegan, cruelty-free makeup and skincare brand that offers organic products that are both good for you, and good for your skin. This vegan foundation is a dream come true for dry skin!

Why We Love It

The company offers kindness to the planet with organic ingredients and sustainable packaging. Their formulas are one of a kind, too! We love it because: 

  • It’s buildable for full-coverage
  • Blendable
  • Lightweight texture is comfortable
  • Aloe juice soothes and hydrates the skin
  • Minimizes the appearance of fine lines and pores

Check it out here!

Smashbox Studio Skin Hydra Foundation ($43)

Smashbox might be known for its fantastic primers, but that’s just one of the holy grail products they offer. Smashbox’s foundation is one of their most slept-on products. 

Why We Love It

Smashbox Hydra Foundation is specially formulated to hydrate parched skin while creating a look you’ll love! It’s:

  • Buildable for medium-full coverage
  • Infused with Hyaluronic Acid for maximum hydration
  • Stays in place for up to 24 hours
  • Blendable
  • Transfer-resistant
  • Free from oil
  • Not supposed to cause breakouts

Check it out here!

So, What Foundation Should I Use For Dry Skin?

You should pick a water-based foundation in a liquid or cream formula. If not, ensure your foundation is packed with powerful moisturizing ingredients. Typically, these are lightweight foundations that offer light or medium coverage. Ensure you have a moisturizing skincare routine to help your skin fight dryness. 

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