Finding the right make-up for you can be challenging at the best of times. We all have different skin types; some sensitive, some dry or oily, but probably one of the most challenging skin types is acne-prone skin. We all want a little helping hand some days to make our skin look flawless, but with problematic skin, applying any kind of substance to your face should be done so with particular caution.
When acne flares up and is at its worst, it’s needless to say that you should avoid make-up at all costs, as this will only clog your pores further, and cause irritation such as burning and itching. However, there will of course be days when you need that extra confidence boost and want to look your best, in which case there are a number of foundations on the market that cater to acne-prone skin that are kind and gentle on your face.
Liquid foundations tend to be the most suitable for acne-prone skin, as they are normally quite lightweight and allow you to achieve a dewy finish rather than drying the skin out. However, if you prefer a matte look, there are also powders you can get to eliminate any shine. If you’re worried that foundation will be too heavy for your skin, a tinted moisturiser or BB cream can do a great job at evening the skin tone and is a great way to test the waters when using new products on your face. Moisturiser can also help soothe and hydrate the skin, encouraging healing.
You don’t have to spend a fortune either, as many high street skin care brands offer a wide range of options for coverage and treatment of acne. Take a look at our list of options and see what would work for you. Remember to always apply to a freshly cleansed face, applying moisturiser first as a base, before lightly blending with your finger or a brush, and never rub into the skin. Be sure to remove all traces of the foundation before you go to bed, so that your skin is able to breathe again, and moisturise again to stay hydrated.
1. Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream
A light cream which is a great introduction to coverage
Best for: Beginners | Type: Tinted Moisturiser | Purpose: Treats and conceals acne | RRP: £6.99
This is a lightweight tinted moisturiser which makes a great alternative to some of the best foundations for acne prone skin if you’re unsure where to begin. The cream contains 2% salicylic acid which is a powerful fighter of blemishes and will help to visibly reduce acne and redness of the skin. Although it doesn’t last as long as a foundation would, it is a great way for beginners to test the water when apply new products to their skin. It comes in one shade which adjusts to your skin tone when applied. Anyone with acne will know that the last thing you want to do is cake your face in foundation, that's why Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream tops our list, it's the perfect solution.
2. BareMinerals Blemish Remedy Mineral Powder Foundation
A powder based foundation to help beat the shine
Best for: Matte finish | Type: Powder Foundation | Purpose: Treats acne and allows skin to breathe | RRP: £27.00
For those of you battling oily skin as well as acne, this Bare Minerals powder is a new way to cover and treat breakouts. The powder does not dry out your skin; it simply covers and reduces the appearance of imperfections while allowing your skin to breathe. If you find that BB creams don’t provide enough coverage but foundations are too heavy and make you break out, then this powder is the product for you.
3. Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Liquid Makeup
A smooth foundation that is neither dry nor oily for flawless coverage
Best for: Healing the skin | Type: Liquid Foundation | Purpose: Controls and prevents breakouts | RRP: £27.00
Clinque have come up with a great formula that is lightweight as well as works to prevent breakouts from worsening when wearing foundation. It comes in a broad range of shades which is particularly good for those with very fair skin who struggle to find a high street foundation that is light enough to match their skin tone. If you want full coverage but don’t like the dewy finish, this would be a great product to pair with the Bare Minerals powder for a flawless matte finish.
4. Neutrogena Visibily Clear Correct & Perfect CC Cream
A hydrating tinted moisturiser for smoothing over imperfections
Best for: Dry skin | Type: CC Cream | Purpose: Hydrates and colour corrects | RRP: £6.99
If you don’t like wearing make-up but still want a helping hand, then this colour correcting cream from Neutrogena does a great job at minimising imperfections and is one of the best foundations for acne scars. It is quite thick as it is designed for those with dry skin, and it only comes in one skin tone, but if you only want minimal coverage while you’re acne is healing, this is a handy foundation style cream to have on hand.
5. Vichy Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation
For flawless looking skin all day long
Best for: High coverage | Type: Liquid Foundation | Purpose: Gives excellent coverage and prevents breakouts | RRP: £15.00
We all have days where we want to look our best, and acne shouldn’t hold you back from achieving flawless looking skin whenever you want. With the Vichy Dermablend Corrective Fluid Foundation, you can have coverage for up to 16 hours with a barely there finish that doesn’t feel cakey on your face. It’s not ideal for dry skin, so if you want to give this a try, we recommend applying moisturiser beforehand to hydrate the skin for a much more even blend. If you are looking for a long lasting acne foundation for combination skin, this is the one you need.
6. Guerlain Lingerie de Peau Natural Perfection Skin-Fusion Texture Foundation
Reduce the appearance of redness for a pure and natural look
Best for: Natural Look | Type: Liquid Foundation | Purpose: Hydrates and reduces redness | RRP: £38.50
For those who are looking for the best foundation for acne coverage, this foundation by Guerlain provides a soft and natural finish for a range of different skin tones. Although it does not have any healing properties for the treatment of acne-prone skin, it is a gentle and hydrating foundation that is one of the best options if you are looking for full coverage. It won't heal flare-ups but this is a very good purchase for those who have battled with acne and want to prevent break outs in the future.
7. Neutrogena Skinclearing Liquid Makeup
A powerful foundation that fights spots and provides excellent coverage
Best for: Preventing acne | Type: Liquid Foundation | Purpose: Kills bacteria and controls breakout | RRP: £14.00
If you like the sound of the skin smoothing properties of the Guerlain Lingerie de Peau foundation but want something that will actively treat your spots, then the Neutrogena Skinclearing Liquid Makeup is the one for you. As well as providing excellent coverage, it actively fights to kill the bacteria that cause acne. Some users with dry skin noted this foundation can become slightly cakey, so make sure you moisturise thoroughly before application.
Once you have found your perfect foundation for acne prone skin, make sure you take a read of our best make-up mirrors for 2018 to help you with the perfect foundation application.