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20 Best Foundations for Oily Skin, According to Beauty Experts

Don't let slick skin stand in the way of a flawless complexion. These expert-recommended foundations for oily skin are here to help!

Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links. Ratings and prices are accurate and items are in stock as of time of publication.

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Choosing the right foundation for oily skin

Foundation is a key element of any makeup look. It can even out your skin tone and give you a great base for the rest of your makeup. But when it comes to picking the best foundation, most people focus on getting the shade right. There’s no doubt that’s important—but it’s not the only crucial element. Considering your skin type, especially when you’re choosing the best foundation for oily skin, is especially important.

“Finding a formula for your skin type is just as important as matching it to your skin tone,” says Robert Sesnek, a celebrity makeup artist who has worked with actresses including Julianne Moore and Lucy Hale. “When you do this, it also means less upkeep throughout the day.” Besides, if you’re going to go to the trouble of taking care of your skin and applying makeup, don’t you want to use products that will make it worth your while? Just as it’s smart to spend time investigating the best face cleansers, the best concealers, the best makeup brushes, and the best makeup remover, the base of your makeup—your literal foundation—is crucial. In other words, it’s always going to pay off if you can use the top products for your skin.

With this line of thinking, if you are older, you may want to focus on the best foundation for mature skin, or if your skin tends to get parched, you’ll want the best foundation for dry skin. But what about oily skin? If you pick the right foundation, often one that’s oil-free, you don’t risk having your face look like an oil slick with a product that slides right off or clogs your pores. Pair it with the best moisturizers for oily skin, and you’ll have a formula for makeup success.

To help you out, we’ve selected the best foundations for oily skin. Before we get to them, learn more about how we put together this list of all-stars.

How we picked the best foundations for oily skin

Whether you’re walking the aisles of the drugstore or browsing online, the seemingly endless foundation options can be overwhelming—especially because every single one touts itself as the most amazing. To help cut through the noise, we consulted top makeup pros, all of whom have worked with women who have various skin types. Plus, we sorted through tons and tons of products, curating those with the very best user reviews and star ratings. Read to find one that’s right for your oily skin!

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay In Place Makeup Ecomm Via Ulatvia merchant

Best overall

Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Foundation

This Estée Lauder foundation has long been a go-to for people with oily skin, and with good reason! It’s oil-free, so you don’t have to worry that you’re adding more greasiness to your skin. It’s also waterproof, which means that if you’re particularly slick one day, it will still stay put. Plus, the matte finish counteracts shine. With more than 7,000 five-star reviews on Ulta, this foundation is the best foundation for oily skin. One reviewer kept it short and to the point, saying: “I have oily and acne-prone skin. It stays in place all day and I don’t need to do any touch-ups.” For how to apply foundation, use your fingertips, sponge, or foundation brush to smooth over your skin, starting from the center out.

Pros:

  • Non-acnegenic (won’t clog pores)
  • Won’t settle into creases and lines
  • Buildable coverage

Con:

  • May not work for combination skin

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Best budget buy

Rimmel Stay Matte Foundation

A liquid foundation that masks oil and costs less than $3? Yes, please! This matte finish pick meets all of those requirements—and then some. The mousse formula goes on extra smooth (especially when applied with a foundation brush), but then dries to a powder, absorbing any greasiness on your skin in the process. Amazon reviewer Samantha says it’s a “holy grail” product for her because her skin doesn’t get oily all day while wearing it, and it’s the perfect duplicate for a much more expensive foundation she used to use. You can also add one of the best setting powders to help keep your foundation set all day or night.

Pros:

  • Oil-free formula
  • Minimizes the appearance of pores
  • Shine control, thanks to talc as one of the ingredients

Con:

  • May need to apply with a brush to get the best finish

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Best cult favorite

Armani Beauty Luminous Silk Perfect Glow Flawless Oil-Free Foundation

This high-end foundation has developed a bit of an obsessive following over the years. Here’s why: “It mimics the skin and gives medium coverage,” says Sesnek. “You can use it all over or to spot treat discoloration.” It could even double for a dark spot corrector. The product is also one of the few oil-free foundations that doesn’t deliver a matte finish. Instead, you get a slightly dewy finish, without looking shiny or slick. Users of this product also love the silky way it blends.

Pros:

  • Medium coverage
  • Luminous finish
  • Available in 40 shades

Con:

  • Expensive

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Best lightweight formula

Beautyblender Bounce Always On Radiant Skin Tint

This skin tint glides onto your face, providing light coverage and a natural makeup look. But that’s not all! It contains hyaluronic acid, which helps infuse moisture into your skin. You may be thinking that hydration is the last thing oily skin needs—wrong! “Even oily skin can get dehydrated, which then encourages an abundance of more oil to be produced,” says Sesnek. The liquid formulation is fairly sheer, making it the best foundation for oily skin for daytime wear. If necessary, learn how to apply concealer to hide any noticeable blemishes this product won’t cover.

Pros:

  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Natural finish
  • Great for combination skin

Con:

  • Not all users like the dropper dispenser

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Loreal Infallible Pro Matte Foundation Ecomm Via Ulta

Best full coverage

L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Liquid Longwear Foundation

Oil-free and resistant to sweat, this full-coverage foundation gets the job done. But just because this highly-rated option will cover up and smooth any imperfections in your complexion, that doesn’t mean it feels heavy on the skin. Instead, it’s one of the best foundations for oily skin that gives a weightless feel and leaves skin with a natural-looking, demi-matte finish. Chio, a reviewer on Ulta, says, “My forehead is really oily and with this—holy meatballs!—it’s so matte. And it covers everything, like my red pimples.” Start with one of the best face moisturizers to prep your skin.

Pros:

  • Available in 22 shades
  • Long-lasting
  • Affordable

Con:

  • Some reviewers say it’s hard to find the right shade

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Best medium coverage

Catrice True Skin Hydrating Foundation

“I love this foundation,” says Sesnek. “It contains hyaluronic acid to hydrate and is alcohol and paraben-free. It’s a medium coverage foundation, but buildable depending on your needs.” Why wouldn’t you want alcohol in your foundation? It can be drying, and when oily skin gets dry, it may overproduce oil to lubricate your skin. In turn, this can make your skin appear even more greasy. In addition to those benefits, this is one of the best foundations for oily skin that lasts all day. You may want to start with one of the best primers to help keep your foundation in place.

Pros:

  • Shades are categorized as warm, cool, or neutral, making it easier to find your match
  • Natural finish
  • Lightweight texture

Con:

  • May have to try with different primers to see what works best

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Best for skin care benefits

IT Cosmetics Your Skin but Better Foundation + Skincare

Make your foundation work for you! IT Cosmetics, which is known for it’s skin-perfecting foundation and other products, incorporated skincare elements into this foundation. This is one of the best foundations for oily skin that contains aloe vera and hyaluronic acid to hydrate, hepes acid to exfoliate and brighten, and vitamin E to moisturize and fight free radicals. “Vitamin E is an anti-inflammatory and good for oily skin,” says Sesnek. The product also helps with uneven texture, something you may have if you get extra oily in your T-zone. You can also try one of the best facial scrubs and exfoliators to help keep your skin healthy before applying foundation.

Pros:

  • Medium coverage
  • Hydrating
  • Buildable

Con:

  • May not cover dark spots

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Best multitasker

Jane Iredale Beyond Matte Liquid Foundation

You’ve got to love a multitasking product: This Jane Iredale foundation is a primer, concealer, and foundation all in one. “It’s so good for oily skin,” says Nydia Figueroa, a celebrity makeup artist. “It contains celery seed and linseed extracts, which help reduce shine.” It offers medium coverage, which also helps blur pores. Plus, if you prefer clean beauty, this checks the box. The foundation is made with plant-based ingredients and is cruelty-free, so make it part of your perfect skin care routine.

Pros:

  • Semi-matte
  • Long-lasting
  • Evens skin tone and minimizes the appearance of pores

Con:

  • On the pricier end

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Fenty Beauty Rihanna Pro Filt Matte Powder Foundation Ecomm Via Sephoravia merchant

Best powder foundation

Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Powder Foundation

Here’s a makeup tip: If you’re not oily all over, consider skipping a liquid formulation. “Powder foundation is best for people with combination skin,” says Sesnak. But that doesn’t mean that those who are oily all over can’t benefit from a powder as well, which instantly reduces shine and is easy to reapply on days you seem extra slick. The result? You always look pulled together and fresh. Since its launch, this beauty line created by Rihanna has been known for the variety of shades it offers. This foundation comes in 50, to be exact. And, because it’s a powder, it’s easy to build coverage. On days your face looks extra oily, apply a bit more. Having a less greasy day? Lucky you. Just a quick brush of this powder will do.

Pros:

  • Vegan
  • Large shade range
  • Matte finish

Con:

  • May need to reapply often (even if it’s easy to do!)

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Best natural finish

Bobbie Brown Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation SPF 15

Neither dewy nor matte, this foundation makes your skin look like, well, your skin—just better. Bobbie Brown’s foundation evens skin tone and adds a natural luminosity. It’s also a water-based foundation, meaning it’s oil-free. Jennifer, a Sephora reviewer who gave it one of its many five-star ratings, says, “It’s perfect for my oily skin and a little goes a long way.”

Pros:

  • Contains SPF 15 for sun protection
  • Buildable coverage
  • Long-wearing

Con:

  • Higher price point

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Smashbox Studio Skin 24 Hour Oil Free Foundation Ecomm Via Sephoravia merchant

Best hydrating

Smashbox Skin 24 Hour Hydra Foundation

“The best.” “Love it.” “Magical.” Those are just some of the words used to describe Smashbox’s popular hydrating foundation in the thousands of five-star reviews it has on Sephora’s website: And not only does it have just over 3,000 written reviews, but it’s been favorited almost 100,000 times. As previously mentioned, trying to dry out oily skin can backfire and cause more shine. This foundation is oil-free but delivers just enough hydration, thanks to hyaluronic acid. Beyond that, it gives you medium coverage and is long-lasting.

Pros:

  • Large shade range
  • Vegan
  • Medium coverage

Con:

  • May need to prep skin with primer for best finish

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Best stick foundation

Huda Beauty #FauxFilter Foundation Stick

Stick foundations are a top choice for people with oily skin. That’s because the formula is a bit drier, which can counteract shine. Huda’s stick foundation gets extra points for its triangular tip, which allows you to easily apply it to difficult areas, like around your nose. It ranks among the best sweatproof makeup and is also waterproof, so you can wear it on hot or humid days without worrying about foundation sliding off your face. One of the nearly 1,000 five-star Sephora reviewers said, “My oil doesn’t break through when I wear this foundation and it lasts all day.”

Pros:

  • Easy application
  • Wide shade range
  • Long-lasting

Con:

  • Some reviewers report that it accentuates pores

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Best long-lasting coverage

Lancôme Teint Idole Ultra 24H Long Wear Foundation

“This foundation is oil-free with a matte finish and comes in 50 shades, so anyone can find their perfect match,” says Genevieve Herr, a celebrity makeup artist who has worked with stars like Julia Roberts and Salma Hayek. “It’s lightweight, breathable, and is very long-wearing, even for oily skin.” Need more proof? Of the over 5,000 reviews on Sephora’s website, a majority of them are five-star, and reviewers say Lancôme’s foundation doesn’t budge, even on greasy days.

Pros:

  • Available in 50 shades
  • Full coverage
  • Matte finish

Con:

  • Has a light scent not all users may like

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Mented Skin Foundation Ecomm Via Ultavia merchant

Best for darker skin tones

Mented Cosmetics Skin by Mented Foundation

Easy to apply on the go and super blendable, this Black-owned makeup brand‘s foundation is also great for oily skin. It contains aloe leaf extract, which hydrates just enough. Plus, it’s lightweight and has buildable coverage, so you can use more on days your skin is extra oily. And while Skin by Mented foundation only comes in 16 shades, it offers a nice number of foundation colors for those with deeper skin tones. Reviewers on Ulta’s website all praise the fact that there are so many shade options for people of color.

Pros:

  • Black-owned beauty brand
  • Easy to apply
  • Moisturizing

Con:

  • Online only

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Best for acne

Clinique Acne Solutions Liquid Foundation

If you have oily skin, you may be prone to blemishes. That’s where this pick from Clinique, one of the best foundations for acne-prone skin, comes in. The highly-rated foundation contains skin-clearing salicylic acid to treat pores clogged by excess oil production. In addition to this, it has a matte finish to counteract slick skin, and has buildable coverage to help hide blemishes. Need extra help covering zits? A mattifying primer can blur imperfections before you put your foundation on.

Pros:

  • Contains acne-fighting ingredients
  • Matte finish
  • Medium coverage

Con:

  • Doesn’t have as many skin tone options as others on our list

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Best tinted moisturizer

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20

If you think you need shellac to cover up all the oil on your face, think again: A tinted moisturizer can totally work for you. This lightweight formula provides sheer coverage and dries matte, eliminating the look of oily skin. It also contains licorice root extract, which helps soothe irritation. Shelley, one of the many reviewers on Sephora’s website, also likes how it feels: “It doesn’t crease and sinks right into my skin.” It’s one of the best moisturizers with SPF.

Pros:

  • Contains SPF
  • Oil-free
  • Light coverage

Con:

  • Doesn’t completely cover pimples

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Maybelline Fit Me Matte And Poreless Liquid Foundation Ecomm Via Amazonvia merchant

Best for mature skin

Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Foundation

As you age, your pores can appear to be more prominent. Add oil into the mix and it’s like you’re shining a spotlight on them. Maybelline’s Fit Me foundation helps cover pores without clogging them. It also feels so smooth on your skin. With over 70,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, you should definitely not sleep on this pick. Reviewer Jay says, “I love that it doesn’t slide or move around during the day and it doesn’t make me oily either.” Pair with Maybelline’s Instant Age Rewind Eraser concealer for a perfect match.

Pros:

  • Available in 40 shades
  • Affordable
  • Natural finish

Con:

  • Some reviewers say it goes on too light

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Best splurge

Clé de Peau Beauté Radiant Fluid Matte Foundation SPF 20

If you’re going to treat yourself, make it count. Yes, this high-end foundation rings in at $130, but it’s pretty darn good. It contains hydrating glycerin but doesn’t get slick-looking when you wear it. The formula is also inspired by skin care, so it reduces the appearance of pores and evens out skin texture as you wear it. And it really lasts, even on oily skin. One Nordstrom reviewer noted, “This is the absolute best. It may be expensive but so well worth it. I used it for the first time after receiving it; it lasted all day with my mask, as I work with patients and wear a mask for seven hours; got home and looked as good as when it went on.”

Pros:

  • Contains SPF 20
  • Available in 24 shades
  • Natural finish

Con:

  • Even for a splurge, you’ll be dropping Benjamins on this one!

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Best for sensitive skin

Bareminerals Original Loose Powder Mineral Foundation SPF 15

The fact that it’s a powder foundation helps reduce oil immediately upon application. It only contains five ingredients, which makes it good for people with sensitive skin—the best natural makeup brands have less to react to! And it feels weightless and won’t clog pores. With nearly 20,000 reviews at Sephora, you can’t really go wrong. Reviewer Cate says, “It doesn’t even feel like I’m wearing foundation.”

Pros:

  • Contains SPF 15
  • Lightweight
  • Clean-beauty brand

Con:

  • Loose powder can be messy

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Best buildable coverage

Revlon ColorStay Liquid Foundation Makeup

If you have oily skin, and we’re guessing you do if you’re reading this, a foundation that is buildable can be a great tool in your arsenal. That’s because, on days when you have more of a natural shine, you may want to apply more foundation to mattify your complexion. But on days when your oil is under control, you don’t need as much coverage. This selection from Revlon can be used to do just that. Apply just a dab for medium coverage or a bit more for additional coverage. Amazon reviewer Nikki says she was shocked at how well it worked. “I have oily skin and literally everything I have tried breaks down and looks cakey and gross halfway through the day. This foundation shocked me, it really does look good all day and doesn’t break down or get shiny. I apply a light to medium layer with a wet beauty blender and I’m set.”

Pros:

  • Available in 43 shades
  • Affordable
  • Contains SPF 15

Con:

  • Must blend quickly before it sets

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Sources:

Bethany Heitman
Bethany is a lifestyle writer and editor with over 15 years of experience and has worked for some of the largest media brands in the world. She covers beauty, fashion, tech, entertainment and more.