Which foundations do I recommend for dry/ combination skin?

Like many of you, I have dry patches on my skin, even though generally my skin is well hydrated and healthy. My skin type is normal/ dry or dry/ combination.

I have tried and tested many foundations over the years. Lots of dodgy formulas and wasted foundations left me feeling a bit of a face failure.

Here’s what I found out on my journey from face fail to holy grail.

Liquid foundations are fine but you need to search for what works for you.
With so many multitaskers out there I often find that they have so many features they compromise on coverage or hydration.

SPF in foundation is my pet hate.

Most liquid foundations with SPF contain Titanium Dioxide which I talk about a lot. I hate it.

It works as an SPF by reflecting UV rays off your skin. Great!
It also reflects natural light off your skin, giving a more natural skin finish. Even better!
Here comes the big BUT… it also reflects camera flashlight.

Why do pro MUA still use liquid foundations then? Pro photographers flash the light onto a flat surface and what illuminates the face is the reflected light.
Point and shoot camera flash reflects off your face giving you a whiter ghostface look.

Now I’ve had my SPF rant, we’ll move on with foundation for dry skin.

If you have dry skin, many of the mattifying ingredients in liquid foundations will highlight dry spots and can dry your skin further.

Best non-drying liquid foundations: Guerlain Parure Gold (high end), Bourjois Healthy Mix foundation (high street), Maybelline Pure Liquid Mineral foundation (high street).



Gel-based foundation
These have less mattifying properties and often have less or no Titanium Dioxide. They are better for dry skin as they don’t take moisture from the skin and don’t dry it out.
They do tend to be more sheer. They are buildable to medium and heavy cover but your skin will feel heavier.
Once the gel has dried and set, it is longer lasting than liquid foundation.

Best gel foundations: YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat foundation (high end), Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum (high street).



Stick foundations are suitable and indeed good on dry/ combination skin (not great on oily skin). They give full coverage and are creamy in texture so are very blendable. They do suffer a bit from melting in heat, and so setting with powder is a must. Fixing spray is also advisable.

Best stick foundations for dry/ combo skin:
Bobbi Brown (high-end/ mid-range), Max Factor Pan Stik (high street)






Mousse foundations are also good for dry skin. They give better coverage than gel-based formulae and hold up better in heat (where stick foundations melt a little and slide off the face). They are blendable and are best applied with fingers or foundation wedge/ sponge. Once dry, it will last most, if not all of the day.

Best mousse foundations: Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse (high street). I must admit I haven’t tried any of the high end mousse foundations but they are available from Suqqu and Shu Emura. Other brands are available but I haven’t come across them yet.


Let me know your experiences with any of these foundations. Also let me know your skin type so it puts your comments in context.
Any questions? Post below. Thanks!