The Best Foundation For Sensitive Combination Skin

Makeup doesn’t always go well with sensitive skin. Many foundation products on the market tend to aggravate sensitive skin, but the good news is that many other brands have come up to cater to those with acne-prone, extremely oily or extremely dry skin.

Below, we review some of the best foundation for sensitive combination skin, while we are looking at foundation for dry skin in this review. From liquid to powder foundation, you will find something that is friendly to your face.

Before diving into the products, here’s what you need to know about the ingredients to watch out for in foundation and how to choose makeup that complements your skin tone.

What Does Foundation for Sensitive Skin Contain?

Foundation for sensitive skin generally contains these ingredients:


This compound is derived from silicone and helps to conceal skin redness and to retain moisture. Some people with extremely sensitive skin may react to this ingredient.


Water is the key ingredient in liquid foundation so this is something you need to look out for.

Vitamin E

This will normally appear as Tocopheryl acetate on the foundation’s label. Vitamin E works to heal the skin and to minimize the effects of skin aging.

Zinc Oxide

A good foundation will protect your face from the effects of sun rays. Look out for products with Zinc oxide, a natural sunscreen.


Commonly known as Vitamin B3, this ingredient strengthens the skin’s protective layer and minimizes redness.

Titanium dioxide, silica, and zinc dioxide:

These compounds also work to reduce redness and to give oily skin a matte finish by absorbing the oil.


This ingredient is common in matte foundations but people with very sensitive skin could react poorly to talc.

What Ingredients Should You Avoid In Foundation?

If you have sensitive skin, there are ingredients that are a no-go zone. Avoid products with the following:


Fragrances are not only complex compounds; they are also among the most dangerous allergens.


Keep away from products containing petroleum or any derivative of petroleum.


These dangerous chemicals wreak havoc on the functioning of hormones and increase the risk of cancer.


Oils can exacerbate the problem by blocking skin pores. The only oil that is suitable for your face is Jojoba.


The types of alcohols to avoid are those that have a drying effect. These alcohols include the likes of isopropyl and methylated spirit.

Sodium lauryl sulfate

This compound can lead to the onset of acne and cause eye and skin irritation.

As you shop around, you will find that some otherwise good foundations contain one or two of the ingredients mentioned above.

How do you make the right decision? A good rule of thumb is to check how far down an ingredient has been listed on the label. The farther down it is, the less of it is contained in the product.

How To Choose The Best Foundation for Your Skin Tone

When selecting the best color foundation for your skin, a good place to start is to blend a little product along your jawline and inspect your skin under natural light. If the foundation is completely absorbed into your skin, it should be a good match.

Your upper skin layer doesn’t tell the whole story; you want to go a little skin deep. The color of your veins will give you a hint of your skin tone. Greenish veins indicate a warm skin tone, purplish or bluish veins give off a cool skin tone while a combination of both colors creates neutral-toned skin.

Consider the effects of the weather on your skin. A foundation color that works for you in summer may not be the best for wintertime.

Let’s get straight into the best foundations for sensitive skin:

COVERGIRL Outlast Stay Luminous Foundation Buff Beige 825, 1 oz (packaging may vary)
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COVERGIRL Outlast Stay Luminous Foundation Buff Beige 825, 1 oz (packaging may vary)
The CoverGirl Luminous Foundation is a great pick if you have dry skin and need a more dewy and shiny finish. Even though it delivers a luminous finish, this foundation is non-greasy and the fact that it is oil-free is a big plus for those with acne-prone skin. ​

Another plus is the pump bottle, which ensures that the foundation stays clean so your skin is not exposed to potentially irritating germs.

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Teint Mattifying Mousse Foundation, Ivory, 1 Fl oz.
This foundation by La Roche-Posay is specially formulated for oily skin. Dermatologists recommend the La-Roche-Posay brand for their range of non-comedogenic products. The Toleriane Teint Mattifying Mousse does not contain fragrances, parabens or oils.

The formula gives a flawless matte finish, thanks to Airlicium, a compound that absorbs oil for an all-day shine-free look. It’s best not to apply this foundation if you usually spend a considerable amount of time indoors as it contains Retinyl Linoleate, a Vitamin A derivative which helps with acne but can also expose your skin to damage from the sun.

Bella Mari Natural Moisturizing Foundation, Light Ivory (I10); 1.7floz Glass
A liquid water-based foundation is ideal for those with very dry skin. The Bella Mari Moisturizing Foundation contains natural zinc oxide which offers SPF 30 protection. This formula is free of the major nasties including soy, gluten, paraben, fragrances, petroleum derivatives and synthetic additives.

It is also vegan and non-comedogenic. In place of these ingredients are water and oils such as olive, bergamot, and sweet orange. This may not be the best product for oily, acne-prone skin types but it does offer great, shine-free coverage that lasts all day.


So there you go! Just because you have sensitive skin doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy the joys of foundation makeup. Your best bet is to choose products that do not contain harmful ingredients and instead opt for foundations that will beautify and nourish your skin at the same time.

For more content on products for sensitive skin, please take a look at our review of the best hypoallergenic shampoo.