The Best Affordable Foundations for Oily Skin
The nice thing about oily skin, despite what you might think, is that there’s a foundation formula specifically suited to every kind of complexion—and budget. The not-so-nice thing is that some are not worth your time or money, and the good ones can be tricky to find. If you’re working with skin that tends to break out and shine like a disco ball, the search for a safe, effective foundation that will keep your skin looking natural and matte without irritation can be particularly stressful.
Luckily, we have some oily-skinned girls on the Byrdie team who’ve weeded through all the affordable foundations on the market to find the ones you should definitely try. You can also check out our round-up of the best foundations here if oily ones are what you're looking for. Keep scrolling for our foundation picks that conceal and control shine for the matte (yet natural) look you’re after.
This story was originally published on April 21, 2015, and has been updated by Amanda Montell.
Neutrogena Skin Clearing Oil-Free Makeup (£16)
A fantastic option for people with oily, acne-prone skin, this Neutrogena foundation contains salicylic acid to help treat existing breakouts and prevent new ones. The formula is shine-free and non-comedogenic, so it won’t clog pores. It also provides completely natural-looking, non-cakey coverage.
Revlon ColorStay Makeup Combination/Oily Skin (£13)
This Revlon foundation is a cult drugstore favorite, beloved by celebrity makeup artists, editors, and pretty much anyone else who’s ever used it. The oil-controlling liquid formula, ideal for both oily and combination skin, delivers smooth, even, buildable coverage that truly stays put all day.
Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation (£6)
Another makeup artist favourite, Maybelline’s formula provides exactly what its name implies: matte, poreless skin. It does so thanks to the blurring micro-powders that effectively erase pores and absorb excess oil for a matte finish that looks like natural skin.
Almay Clear Complexion Blemish Healing Liquid Makeup (£14)
For covering up active breakouts, this liquid foundation is the go-to. Aloe and chamomile help to soothe red, inflamed skin, while the mineral formula delivers full coverage without any cakiness. It also contains salicylic acid to speed up recovery time of existing blemishes.
L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte 24HR Foundation (£8)
When you want to bring in the big guns, this L’Oréal pick creates shine-free skin for hours (we haven’t worn it for 24 hours straight, but it definitely lasts for an entire workday). The lightweight, mattifying formula glides onto skin and contains the same technology that blotting papers have to soak up sweat and oil without disturbing the overall canvas.
Covergirl Outlast Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 Foundation (£8)
We love a solid multitasking product, and this long-wear formula combines primer, concealer, and foundation for a flawless finish. It helps to blur imperfections while providing even coverage to conceal acne scars and hyperpigmentation. As an added bonus, it offers SPF 20.
Boots No7 Beautifully Matte Foundation (£15)
This hypoallergenic liquid formula contains salicylic acid to help unblock pores and improve skin while concealing. It goes on smooth, blends well, and keeps skin matte, but not dry. The hint of SPF is an added perk.