Foundation for Oily Skin

March 15, 2012By

Foundation can cover up acne, scars, and other imperfections, making it a wonderful choice for people who suffer from skin problems. It does come with its own set of difficulties, though, including that many are greasy or cause the skin to become oilier as a result. Fortunately, finding the right foundation for oily skin isn’t too difficult once one knows what to look for.

How to Choose the Right Foundation for Your Oily Skin:

Stay Away from Emollients and Oil-Based Products

Woman looking for foundation for oily skinPetroleum- or oil-based foundations are a poor choice for oily skin. As might be expected, adding oil will only make the situation worse. Pores can also become clogged or blocked, keeping naturally-produced oil from getting to the surface and potentially leading to acne breakouts.

Keep it Light

When it comes to skin care, there’s one nearly-universal truth: lower-strength products are almost always better. It’s no different with makeup. A lighter coverage will allow the skin to breathe. Products that advertise a “sheer” or light to medium coverage are usually the best choice for this reason. Lighter products are also less likely to look bad after a few hours.

Heavy products are generally only a good choice for covering significant scars or severe skin disorders that won’t worsen as a result of application. Try it in small amounts first and see how it works out. This can be a good option for stretch marks, especially if using a stretch mark removal cream doesn’t work.

Don’t Mix Alcohol and Skin Care

Alcohol is well-known for its dehydrating effects: it’s what causes hangovers and is believed to be the main reason why excessive drinking can cause oral cancer. It does the same thing when applied to skin, working as an extreme drying agent. While this may seem like exactly what oily skin needs, it isn’t—as mentioned above, lighter, gentler care is a better choice. If the skin becomes too dry, it reacts by producing more oil frequently to keep it from getting any worse. Avoiding alcohol-based (and other overly-strong) products can prevent this natural reaction.

Minerals and Clays

Products that use minerals are often a great choice. The main advantage of minerals is that the skin won’t absorb any, so pores can stay clean. Another good reason to use minerals is sun protection, which both zinc oxide and titanium dioxide offer. Many skin care products cause the user to become more vulnerable to sunburn and UV rays, which will only aggravate skin conditions, so this is an important benefit to keep in mind. Better yet, these minerals are very safe for people with sensitive skin and won’t cause allergic reactions.

Clay can actually absorb oil, making it a perfect ingredient in foundations for oily types of skin and helping the user to keep their skin grease-free throughout the day. Both minerals and clays can also add a healthy look to the skin, eliminating that much-maligned oily shine and creating a softer appearance. Mica in particular is good for adding an attractive glow.


Powder is both light and good for absorbing oil, but it’s known to crack and flake away, especially near wrinkles.


Water-based skin cream often makes a great foundation for people with oily skin. With no oil to clog pores and a smooth, easy-to-apply consistency, it looks good, feels good, and does the job well. This may be the best choice.

Finally, when choosing the right foundation for your oily skin, it’s important to check the product’s label to see what skin type it claims to work best for—those that advertise being effective for dry skin are likely to fail on oily skin. Always be sure to test a new foundation’s effectiveness (and look for bad reactions) on a small area before applying to a larger one.

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