Style/ Beauty

21 Best Lightweight Foundations, Reviewed By Editors

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15. Best lightweight foundation for mature skin

Jones Road What The Foundation

Why we love it: What do you get when you mix a tinted moisture balm with a traditional foundation? You get Jones Road’s What The Foundation, of course. Made with jojoba oil and sodium hyaluronate, it blends into your skin seamlessly without appearing cakey.


16. Best multi-purpose lightweight foundation

Maybelline Instant Anti Age Perfector 4-In-1 Glow Primer, Concealer, Highlighter

Why we love it: Is it a foundation? A glow primer? Concealer? Highlighter? Yes to all of that. Available in 8 different shades, this cruelty-free product even comes with its own anti-microbial system.

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ILIA Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 30

Why we love it: Along with other premium lightweight foundations, this one from ILIA is ideal for building a flawless finish that’s weightless and free from silicones, oils and fragrances. Available in 30 flexible shades.


18. Best lightweight foundation with a water-based formula

Chanel Les Beiges Water-Fresh Tint

Why we love it: Looking for something lightweight enough to feel like second skin? This premium Chanel foundation has a formulation that consists of 75% water, which helps create a softened, smooth finish. Ideal if you want to go for that natural ‘no-makeup’ look.


19. Best lightweight foundation for long-term results

IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better Foundation + Skincare

Why we love it: Old-school, cakey foundations used to have a bad reputation for, well, ruining your skin underneath. No more. This foundation from IT Cosmetics does precisely the opposite. It works like skincare – thanks to ingredients like aloe vera, vitamin E, vitamin B5 and hyaluronic acid – to improve your skin and complexion over time. *chef’s kiss*

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20. Best lightweight foundation for combination skin

Clinique Even Better Makeup SPF15

Why we love it: This creamy, lightweight foundation actively improves the look of your skin, thanks to a blend of polymers that treat it with every use. Developed by dermatologists, it has a staying power of up to 24 hours and is ideal for oily or combination oily skin.


21. Best lightweight foundation for sun protection

No7 Protect & Perfect ADVANCED All in One Foundation

Why we love it: If you have a pale complexion, sensitive skin or are just generally more prone to burning in the sun, then this is the product for you. With SPF 50, this foundation will give you the protection you need while helping you look drop-dead gorgeous.

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Which lightweight foundation is for you?

As mentioned, there are many products that fall into the category of lightweight foundations, including tinted moisturisers, skin tints, dewy foundations, matte foundations and more. But which one should you pick? This usually depends on both your preference and your skin type. If you have dry skin, we definitely recommend checking out a tinted moisturiser, but if you’re someone who has oily skin, you might be more interested in foundations with a matte finish. It’s also important to keep in mind that although all of the aforementioned foundations are considered “lightweight,” their coverage levels still vary from light, medium, full and buildable. So make sure to pick the one that fits your preference most.

How to apply a lightweight foundation

The number one rule that you need to keep in mind when it comes to makeup is simple: There. Are. None. So the best thing that you can do is to simply have fun and find out what works best for you and your skin type. When it comes to applying any type of foundation or products with a creamy or liquid formula, many tend to reach for three tools: makeup sponges, brushes and (you guessed it) your very own hands. Like with most things, each one of this trio has its own pros and cons. For example, despite their popularity, quite a few people dislike the way makeup sponges soak up the product, while others are not fond of the streaks that a brush may leave. Meanwhile some are concerned about the hygiene aspect of applying foundation with your bare hands.

So, in reality, it all comes down to you. Are you someone who loves a wet, dewy and airbrushed finish? Go for a makeup sponge. Or are you someone who’s after more coverage and easy blending? Grab a foundation brush. But if you’re someone who’s into a natural look, we recommend using your trusty fingertips. Also, do keep in mind that depending on the type of a lightweight foundation you end up picking, you may want to adjust your application technique accordingly. For example, if it’s a liquid skin tint, a makeup sponge may not be the best choice as it will likely soak up the majority of the product, whereas if its a creamy or a thicker formula, then by all means, stick with the sponge or a brush. And if you opted for a tinted moisturiser, it might be a good idea to apply the product with your fingers (similar to how you would do your skincare).

For more shoppable beauty content from Glamour UK Commerce Writer Denise Primbet, follow her on Twitter @deniseprimbet and Instagram @deniseprimbet.

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