Having oily skin can be pretty frustrating. While you're rarely short on hydration and have a permanent glow, the oiliness can wreak havoc with any makeup you try to put on top, especially foundation. You may start the day looking super matte, but if your skin has a propensity to overdo it on the oil production, by lunchtime, it's likely your natural sebum will have caused a tidal wave of pigment to start travelling down your face. And it can happen to even the best foundations if they're not suited to oily skin types.
While there are plenty of excellent foundations for oily skin out there (here's our comprehensive guide), you don't need to spend a wad of cash on this corner of your makeup bag: The drugstore market has come on leaps and bounds, and access to innovative technologies means that there are plenty of affordable formulas that will mop up excess oil and leave you looking just as matte as you intended.
We've cherry-picked the seven best foundations for oily skin below.
The reason The Ordinary's foundations come up time and time again in best foundation galleries is that they are so good and so cheap. This one is surprisingly lightweight for something that imparts so much coverage, but the technicians behind the formula have ensured maximum spreadability, meaning it forms little more than a wafer-thin veil. It's perfect if you want matte coverage but don't want it to feel like you're wearing a mask.
At the base of Maybelline's formulas are little micro-powders that firstly provide a hefty helping of coverage, but they also work like little sheets of kitchen roll, mopping any and all oil overspills as they occur throughout the day, so there's little need for reapplication.
If you're a fan of the poreless, airbrushed finish, then Rimmel's mousse formula will be right up your street. It feels bouncy and aerated to the touch, but it blends brilliantly, mopping up pools of oiliness, knocking back shine and blurring out pores as though its life depends on it. Our only gripe? That it doesn't come in more shades.
Sleek's shade range is particularly impressive and perfectly caters to the oft-maligned darker end of the skin tone spectrum. This foundation is pretty heavy, so it's good for anyone who is after full coverage, and it contains soft-focus blurring powders that have the same effect as a translucent powder—taking down shine and stopping oil in its tracks.
There is nothing your day can throw at you that L'Oréal's foundation can't handle. It's waterproof, steamproof (so it won't slide even if you're cooking over a hot stove) and has a firm but forgiving hold on shine: It cuts it out, but it doesn't make skin look weirdly flat.
Where stick foundations really come into their own is within the oily skin contingent, as the buttery pigments offer tonnes of coverage that stays put as soon as you put it on. Lottie London's is no different and will keep oily skin in check without getting rid of too much natural shine.
There's not a speck of oil in Revlon's foundation, which means it won't exacerbate any existing oil-control issues. Instead, it melts down and nuzzles its way into every crevice of the face, so skin looks matte, but the coverage is hardly detectable.