7 Foundations That Cater To The Complex Needs Of Combination Skin

Base balance is the name of the game

A combination skin type (which tends to be comprised of an oily T-zone and dryness in the cheek and chin areas) can be both a blessing and a curse.

On one hand, you have no glaring skin concerns that you need to cater to with the selection of every formula (and so generally have more room to play), but on the other, it can be especially tricky to figure out what your face actually requires when it’s not so cut and dry. With no clear issues, there are also no clear solutions.

When it comes to foundation (the very product that affects how you present your skin to the world), however, we bet you want to get it just right, Goldilocks style. And so, we’re here to help.

Long story short, combination skin calls for foundation formulas that are as complex as it is. Plain mattifying formulas won’t do drier areas any favours, and dew-laden glossy finishes may leave you looking more shiny than radiant.

As for what will work, think oil-free but hydrating or soft mattes that won’t be too drying on more dehydrated areas. Hybrids suit hybrids, after all.

Still after some specific recommendations? We’ve got your combination skin-friendly foundation wish list covered with these seven multitasking bases…

Givenchy Prisme Libre Skin Caring Glow Foundation


An oil-free antioxidant-packed formula with the ability to effortlessly top up radiance and moisture levels while simultaneously but subtly glossing over pores, it’s a breathable base that’ll feel as ‘real’ as it looks. What do we mean by that exactly? It’s the opposite of heavy, in both texture and appearance.

$85 at Sephora

Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation


Remember that ‘soft matte’ approach we suggested? This is the way to master it. An oil-free foundation that aims to balance skin and blur the appearance of pores in grease-prone areas, it’s still loaded with enough hydrating skin-loving ingredients (glycerin among them) to ensure skin doesn’t look flat or lifeless.

$53 at Sephora

Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation


A favourite of celebrities, makeup artists and beauty editors alike, the name may say ‘luminous’ but the oil-free status says ‘glowy, not greasy’. Aside from its combination skin-flattering nature, it’s a beautifully crafted buildable base that focuses as much on texture (that’s where the ‘silk’ comes in) as it does tone.

$105 at Sephora

Estée Lauder Double Wear Light Soft Matte Hydra Makeup SPF 10


Another soft matte base determined to perfectly polish all parts of your face, this long-lasting liquid is an oil-free option that also happens to be infused with hydrating hyaluronic acid. Its objective? To gently absorb excess oil where needed, while also imparting a fresh, illuminated glow.

$60 at Sephora

Dear Dahlia Skin Paradise Sheer Silk Foundation


Designed to douse skin with a naturally airbrushed foundation effect (keyword being ‘naturally’; the finish is as sheer as the title would suggest), it’s infused with soft-focus mineral powders to diffuse and detract from the appearance of shine. It also moonlights as a hydrator, however, thanks to the addition of nourishing dahlia flower extract.

$70 at Sephora

Ere Perez Oat Milk Foundation


If you’re searching for a vegan oil-free base buy, look no further than this non-greasy natural-finish foundation. The ingredients list reads like a delicious dream (with its namesake soothing oat milk as well as peach, a fruity means to a luminous end, both making the cut). In essence, it’s a lightweight delight bound to satisfy every section of your skin.

$50 at MECCA

Dior Backstage Face and Body Foundation


Of course, you can also opt for foundations that offer ‘natural’ finishes, like this sweat-resistant, silky-but-not-shiny Dior buy. It’s basically made to perfect and ever so slightly balance all areas, leaving your complexion looking the one way combination skin types tend to crave: even all over.

$70 at Dior

Main image credit: @gregoryrussellhair

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