This Foundation Is the Perfect Match for Sensitive and Acne-Prone Skin Alike

Photo: Getty Images/Luis Alverez
The idea that foundation is bad for your skin is complete and utter BS. Derms have debunked the myth that using complexion products is a surefire recipe for breakouts, and over the last few years, we've seen a wave of smartened-up formulas that are just as much skin care as they are makeup. One of our favorites? BareMinerals Original Liquid Mineral Foundation With Broad Spectrum SPF 20 ($35).

"I love that this foundation is so natural," says makeup artist Cara Lovello, who calls it "the perfect alternative for a dewy, skin-like finish." And after testing it out for myself, I've gotta say: I agree. Keep reading for what you need to know.

Experts In This Article
  • Cara Lovello, New York-based bridal and celebrity makeup artist

Fast facts

Coverage: medium

Finish: natural, luminous

Shade range: 30 colors with warm, cool, and natural undertones

Benefits: mineral, non-comedogenic formula; smooths texture, reduces visible pores, and improves redness

Best for: all skin types, but particularly sensitive and acne-prone skin

The formula

This foundation is just as much skin care as it is makeup. It was developed as the liquid version of bareMinerals' cult-fave Original Loose Powder Foundation ($32) and contains the brand's signature blend of minerals. Among them? Fine-line blurring silica, moisture-balancing potassium, and hydrating magnesium, plus zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for broad-spectrum UV protection with SPF 20.

According to derms, mineral formulas—like this one—are the best for people with sensitive or acne-prone skin, because they come with a lower risk of causing irritation or clogging pores than other types of foundation. "These products often contain less potential contact allergens such as fragrances and preservatives like parabens," Meghan Feely, MD, FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist in New Jersey and New York City, previously told Well+Good.

This product touts itself as being made with "half the ingredients of top-selling foundations," and doesn't contain silicone, parabens, talc, or oil. "Mineral foundations are also generally non-comedogenic, meaning they do not clog your pores," adds Dr. Feely.

Aside from all of this mineral-related goodness, the formula's also got other skin-nourishing ingredients, including hydrating squalane and complexion-plumping peptides.

BareMinerals liquid foundation review

Thanks to bareMineral's AI-powered shade-matching tool, I was able to find the perfect color for my complexion online. I simply snapped a selfie and the brand's website suggested five different options that would work with my skin tone. Then, I layered each shade over the photo of my face to see how they looked and wound up opting for Golden Ivory 07.

The brand suggests applying the product with your hands, so I started by pumping some on the back of my hand and dabbing it onto my forehead, nose, and cheeks. I initially blended with my fingers, but there was still a bit of streakiness left behind, so I used a damp Beautyblender to finish the job.

I tend to lean toward tinted moisturizers instead of full-blown foundations and was pleasantly surprised that the finish this product left behind was just as natural-looking as what I'm used to. It toes the line between dewy and matte (which, until I saw with my own eyes, I would have thought was impossible), and offers enough coverage to even out my skin tone without making it look like I'm wearing anything at all.

I put it to the ultimate test by wearing it out in the 90-degree New York City heat and can say with full confidence that the foundation lives up to its claims of being long-lasting. It didn't drip, flake, separate, or seep into my fine lines and wrinkles at all, and after eight hours my skin looked just as fresh as it had immediately after I applied.

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