Best Foundations For Acne Prone Skin - 2017 Reviews and Top Picks

“In our commitment to help you end your skin breakouts, we’ve dedicated more than 18 hours to choose the best foundations for acne prone skin among 25 of the top performing products today. Our top choices were ranked based on their coverage, extra ingredients and formulation. These foundations are set to help you upgrade your makeup routine to a whole new level.”

At A Glance: Our Choices for The Best Foundations for Acne Prone Skin

E.L.F Acne Fighting Foundation is a must-try product for people with acne prone skin. Apart from that it's packed with ingredients that can halt skin breakouts, it also has a great coverage to help conceal your trouble spots.

For the best oil-free foundation for acne prone skin, we highly suggest Lorac Natural Performance Foundation. It offers medium to full coverage with its oil-free and paraben-free formulation.

Coming with a unique pouch packaging, Cargo Liquid Foundation is an oil-free foundation that can provide ultra hydration to the skin. It is long lasting and can be used for a sheer natural finish or full coverage.​

Maybelline New York Fit Me Matte Plus Poreless Foundation Makeup is a great choice for people with acne prone skin and large pores. Its formulation can blur out pores to give you a matte and seamless finish.

Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup is fit for your skin type for its great list of acne-clearing ingredients. It's water-based and offers medium coverage for mild to moderate skin issues.

2017’s Reviews of The Best Foundations for Acne Prone Skin

Best Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#1- E.L.F Acne Fighting Foundation

E.L.F Cosmetics

Not all foundations are like E.L.F Acne Fighting Foundation. This product can’t only conceal your skin blemishes, but it’s also infused with ingredients that can fight acne.

It has salicylic acid, tea tree and witch hazel which are considered potent in treating and preventing skin breakouts. It also has aloe vera to soothe your delicate skin.

The foundation has a thick consistency and offers great coverage. In fact, it can hide redness really well that you’ll find yourself less likely to pack in more concealer.

As for the finish, it’s matte.

You can apply it with a foundation brush. However, since it’s thick, using a damp makeup sponge will give you a more seamless result.

Take note that this one has a tendency to oxidize. If you have an acidic skin, it’s a good idea to use a primer or pick one that is a shade lighter than your skin tone.

What We Like:

  • Has acne-fighting ingredients
  • Has great coverage
  • Leaves a matte finish
  • Affordable

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Tends to cake up
  • Can oxidize on skin

Best Oil-Free Foundation

#2- Lorac Natural Performance Foundation


Lorac Natural Performance Foundation offers weightless coverage that will last throughout the day. The product is free of oils, parabens, and fragrances which lessens that chances of your skin breaking out.

What makes this product impressive is that aside from the medium to full coverage it offers, it also includes three special ingredients that are geared to help soothe and reduce redness in sensitive skin. It has Xyleine, premier olive leaf extract, and vitamin A.

The foundation dries to a semi-matte finish. If you are the type of person who still likes a bit of dewiness (that isn’t oil), this one might work really well for your skin type.

The product doesn’t set too fast, which is great since it can give you enough time to buff and blend. Foundations that set quickly can be frustrating and stressful for the skin, especially with the pressure you need to exert to blend out the harsh lines.

It has good pigmentation and it tends to last long on the skin. For best results, I suggest you use a loose powder to set this foundation.

One issue I have with this product is its lemon fruit extract which can be potentially irritating to those who have extra sensitive skin.

What We Like:

  • Has good pigmentation
  • Lightweight
  • Noncomedogenic
  • Long lasting
  • Offers good coverage

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Contains lemon fruit extract
  • Costly

Best Foundation for Dry Acne Prone Skin

#3 Cargo Liquid Foundation


If you have dry acne prone skin, using a matte foundation can just spell trouble for your skin. This is exactly why we are recommending this Cargo Liquid Foundation.

It has ultra hydrating properties that won’t add any oil on your skin. This means getting moisturized flawless skin without having to worry about potential breakouts.

In addition to that, the foundation is also long wearing, which makes it a favorite among pro makeup artist. It offers medium coverage but you can build it up to your needs.

The foundation comes in a unique packaging and I find it really interesting.

Instead of a tube, bottle or pan, you get a recyclable plastic pouch (seriously!). You can squeeze it until you get the last drop and you can take it anywhere you go without getting worried about breaking it in your purse.

What We Like:

  • Oil-free
  • Hydrating
  • Comes in a recyclable packaging
  • Offers medium coverage

What We Didn’t Like:

  • A bit tricky to find the right shade
  • Not for people with severe skin imperfections

Best Drugstore Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#4- Maybelline New York Fit Me Matte Plus Poreless Foundation Makeup

Maybelline New York

Formulated especially for acne prone skin, Maybelline New York Fit Me Matte Plus Poreless Foundation Makeup can blend not only with the tone of your skin, but its texture, too. It’s ultra lightweight to ensure that you feel comfortable wearing it all day.

This foundation can’t literally make your pores disappear. However, instead of settling into your pores, it blurs them.

As a result, you get a seamless finish. It’s weightless, too.

Maybelline Fit Me Foundation can control oil really well. In fact, it can keep shine and grease at bay for a few hours.

It offers light to medium coverage and carries a lot of shades. To be exact, it has 24 different shades you can choose from.

One thing I don’t find that nice with this product is its packaging. It comes in a glass bottle with no pump applicator for dispensing.

What We Like:

  • Blurs out pores
  • Leaves a matte finish
  • Lightweight
  • Comes in a wide range of shades

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Has no pump for dispensing
  • Can adhere to dry patches

Best Liquid Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#5- Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup


This lightweight foundation from Clinique packs a powerful punch of salicylic acid, sea algae components, and hydroxydecanoic acid to treat and prevent acne while concealing.

It also has caffeine in order to alleviate the stinging irritation that is commonplace for acne prone skin. The foundation is designed to treat acne without stripping away dryness, but some may still experience mild dryness from the medicated ingredients.

Fortunately, a light layer of moisturizer can usually remedy this problem. The foundation also lasts for eight hours so consumers will seldom need to reapply throughout the day.

It offers a medium coverage which is a great help for acne prone skin. If you have redness, however, you might want to consider using a color correcting concealer first to achieve a more flawless result.

The product fits acne prone skin well since it is water-based. It’s light to and offers a matte finish.

Take note that the product sets quickly. Make sure that you blend it right away after applying- or else, your skin will end up with streaks.

What We Like:

  • Leaves a matte finish
  • Offers good coverage
  • Great staying power
  • Water-based

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Sets quickly
  • Can be drying due to salicylic acid content

Best Powder Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#6- Becca Perfect Skin Mineral Powder Foundation

Becca Cosmetics

If you aren’t into liquid and cream foundations, a good choice for you would be Becca Perfect Skin Mineral Powder Foundation. It offers buildable coverage and a soft, luminous finish.

It’s color range it’s quite impressive. It even has shades that can match those with olive skin tones.

It doesn’t oxidize or turn cakey once applied on the skin. The foundation isn’t that long lasting but you can expect it to stay on your skin for a good few hours.

Unlike other pressed powders, this one isn’t that drying to the skin. It won’t accentuate your pores or even your fine lines.

For an even better result, I still suggest you use a primer before applying this product.

What We Like:

  • Great in evening out the skin
  • Doesn’t turn cakey
  • Offers buildable coverage
  • Has mineral-based formulation

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Not that highly pigmented
  • Contains bismuth

Best Matte Foundation

#7- L'Oréal Paris Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation

L'Oreal Paris

L'Oréal Paris Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation is a holy grail product for a lot of people struggling with acne prone and oily skin. It is a long lasting foundation that promises to stay on your skin for 24 hours.

One good reason why it has become a crowd favorite is its ability to control shine and keep the skin matte. People with acne prone skin tend to have oily skin, too.

For these exact same reasons, I don’t really recommend the product to those with dry skin. It will cling to your dry patches and can accentuate them more.

The product has a buildable coverage that feels very lightweight. It’s not the kind of foundation that will make you feel too conscious about wearing makeup.

It is easy to blend. You can apply with almost any method you like, from using a damp sponge or with your foundation brush.

What We Like:

  • Good oil control
  • Long lasting
  • Offers good coverage
  • Easy to apply

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Can adhere to dry patches
  • Range of shades is limited

Best Foundation for Acne Scars

#8- Illuminare Concealing Mineral Foundation


Illuminare Concealing Mineral Foundation comes in just 5 shades. Despite the limited shades available, this product is still loved by a lot of people with acne prone skin.

One good reason is the coverage it provides. It applies smoothly but may need a bit of work when it comes to blending.

The foundation is really thick and highly pigmented. For these reasons, this one is a must-have for those with acne scars.

Apart from scars, this one also does a great job in concealing redness and other hyperpigmentations you might have. You only need to take a small amount of product, which means one tube can last you a long time.

It is on the expensive size, considering its size. However, since it’s concentrated, it might still be able to give you the best bang for your money.

What We Like:

  • Has great coverage
  • Highly pigmented
  • Can hide scars and hyperpigmentation issues nicely

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Consistency can make blending a bit tricky
  • Limited shades available

Best Full Coverage Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#9- Oxygenetix Oxygenating Foundation


Oxygenetix Oxygenating Foundation isn’t your typical foundation. Especially formulated for medical uses, this product has no preservatives, oils and fragrance that can trigger skin breakouts.

Apart from that, it also comes with an SPF rating of 25.

The foundation, despite offering a full coverage, has a breathable formulation. It feels healthy and light on the skin.

It isn’t completely matte. It’s actually quite dewy which can make your skin look a lot healthier.

Since it has a thick consistency, you may want to use a brush or a sponge during application. It’s not really hard to spread but just to make sure you get an even application, using a makeup tool would be nice.

Another impressive feature of this foundation is that it can resist humid weather and even sweat. It’s a good fit for people who live in areas where the weather is always hot.

What We Like:

  • Has a breathable formulation
  • Easy to spread
  • Feels light on the skin
  • Great coverage
  • Free from parabens and fragrance
  • Has SPF

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Expensive
  • Can be drying to the skin

Best Non Comedogenic Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

#10- Physicians Formula Nude Wear Glowing Nude Foundation

Physicians Formula

Physicians Formula Nude Wear Glowing Nude Foundation comes in a great looking packaging. It looks sleek and very feminine.

Apart from that, it also comes with a pump which is really good, especially when it comes to hygiene.

The product has pigments that can boost your skin’s natural radiance. It is airy and feels really soft on the skin.

On top of brightening your skin tone, it can also even out the color of your skin. It’s a perfect foundation if you are aiming for a no-makeup makeup look.

And the best part?

It’s non-comedogenic which means it has less chances of clogging your pores and causing your skin to break out. It’s also free from fragrance, parabens and even gluten.

Keep in mind that this foundation can only give you a sheer coverage. It’s not the best choice for concealing severe skin blemishes.

But, with a full coverage concealer, this foundation can give boost your skin’s natural beauty.

What We Like:

  • Lightweight
  • Enhances skin’s natural glow
  • Pretty packaging
  • Comes with a pump
  • Gluten-free

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Only offers sheer coverage
  • Thin consistency

Reviews and Comparisons of the Best Foundations for Acne Prone Skin


Best Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

Best Oil-Free Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

Best Foundation for Dry Acne Prone Skin

Best Drugstore Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

Best Liquid Foundation for Acne Prone Skin

Top-Rated Foundations for Acne Prone Skin 2017

E.L.F Cosmetics
Maybelline New York


E.L.F Cosmetics



Maybelline New York










Medium to full

Medium to full

Medium to full









1.21 fluid ounce

1 fluid ounce

1.36 fluid ounce

1 fluid ounce

9.5 grams



Bottle with pump



Squeeze tube

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How To Find The Right Foundation

Finding the right makeup doesn’t end in knowing what your skin type is. If you want to get a really flawless result (which I’m sure you do), you have to consider a lot of things.

Knowing your skin tone and undertone​

These are two different things, actually.

Skin tone is simply the color of your skin. It has something to do with the pigments in your skin known as melanin.​

Undertone, on the other hand, refers to how your skin reacts when matched with other colors. Your skin can have a warm, cool or neutral undertone.

There are a couple of ways for you to know yours:

One is how your skin reacts to the sun. If you tend to to tan easily, there’s a good chance you have a warm undertone. If you tan minimally, you can consider your skin to have a cool undertone.

Another trick you can use is to expose your skin to natural lighting and look closely at the color of your veins. If you generally see a greenish color, you have warmed undertone. You are considered cool toned if your veins have a bluish to purplish tints.

If you can’t decide, you have probably a neutral undertone.

Your accessories can also help you decide. In case you gravitate towards gold more, you could be warmed toned. If you look better with silver accessories, consider yourself with a cool undertone.

If you look good in both gold and silver, your undertone is neutral.

Choosing the right shade of foundation

Once you are able to know your skin tone and undertone, the next thing you have to consider is the right shade of foundation.

This is, perhaps, the trickiest part.

If you’ve bought a foundation that looked really great with swatching only to find out that it’s not actually the best match for your skin, then you’d know exactly what I mean. It isn’t only frustrating but it’s a waste of money, too.

For the perfect match, you should swatch the foundation on your chest instead of your wrist or the back of your hand. Keep in mind that your face and chest are not always the same color as your body, especially if you’re consistent with using sun protective products on the said areas.

If you swatch a foundation and the color disappears with the rest of the skin on your chest area, it’s the right match. But, that is if you are not acidic.

A skin that’s acidic tends to trigger oxidation in foundations. It’s when the product suddenly turns orange or a few shades darker.

For acidic skin, it’s a good idea to swatch a product first and wait for several minutes or even an hour to see if there is going to be any reaction. If the foundation changes color, buy it in one to two shades lighter.

Investing in a primer can help, too.

Deciding on the right coverage

For someone with acne prone skin, you have to find a foundation that can successfully conceal your acne and other skin blemishes.

If the blemishes are minimal, you can go for a foundation with sheer coverage. But, if you have moderate to severe blemishes, you might want to go for a full coverage.

Keep in mind, however, that coverage relates to how much of your natural skin you want to show.

Picking the right formulation

When you have acne prone skin, the last thing you want your foundation to do is to make your skin issues more noticeable than they already are. Even if you pick the right shade and coverage, the results you’ll get won’t be that great if you don’t invest in the right foundation formula.

For your skin type, matte finish liquid foundations are your best bet. They are lightweight, easy to blend and won’t make your skin look more greasy than it already is.

If you have slightly (and I really mean slightly) oily skin and you need a quick fix to getting flawless skin, loose-powder and pressed-powder foundations might do the trick.

How To Apply Foundation​

Foundations are amazing- that is if you know how to apply them properly.

A good rule of thumb is to start with a moisturized base. Yes, you got that right.

Acne prone skin, just like most skin types, needs moisturizers, too. However, before you apply a good layer of foundation, make sure that your moisturizer has already set.

If not, it can only cause your foundation to sit on top of your skin.

Once your skin has absorbed the product completely, you can apply your primer. Now, this step is completely up to you, but if you want your makeup to really last, don’t skip it.​

Primers, aside from acting as a barrier, can minimize pores and mattify the skin.

As for application, there are actually several ways. You can use your fingers, a foundation brush or a makeup brush depending on the coverage you want to achieve.

Start with a thin layer of the foundation. This will make it easier for you to build the product to the coverage you want without looking cakey.

Pay more attention to your skin blemishes. If your foundation isn’t enough to cover them all, you can apply concealer on top of the foundation.

Blend everything well. Make sure that there are no harsh lines to achieve a natural look.

You can set your makeup using a translucent powder. Apart from longevity, it can also mattify your face.​


Everyone has a complexion and skin type that is unique to them. With this uniqueness comes different sensitivities, so one foundation may work better for some than others.

For those that have severely oily skin, finding a product that focuses less on maintaining hydration and more on ridding these oils may be key. You can read our guide about Best Foundation for Oily Skin to find out more.

Those who experience blemishes but also have dry or combination skin will want to make maintaining hydration a priority when selecting a product.​

Don’t be afraid to experiment and to ask plenty of questions before purchasing a product. There is no limit to the tips and tricks that can be utilized when purchasing makeup for acne prone skin. What are some of your favorite suggestions?​

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