Best foundations 2020: from full coverage to soft tints

From young to mature skin and oily to dry, here’s everything you need to know about the top foundations to cover all bases

Best foundations
(Image credit: Getty)

Let’s face it, months of lockdown has played havoc with our faces. It’s time to rid our dull and tired skin and get the glow back. As we head into the height of summer, it’s more important than ever - after weeks indoors- to touch base and get skin looking soft and radiant. And that’s where the best foundation comes in hand. 

What once suited you perfectly in the office may no longer deem suitable for those daily zoom meetings that highlight not only the chalkiness of foundation but also give off a wrong shade of colour under the glare of the screen light.

The ultimate goal is a foundation that looks like your own skin—only better. From full coverage to soft tints, these foundations will take your make-up to the next level, feel comfortable on the skin, cover lines and help give a visible improvement to the complexion. 

The best foundations you can buy today:

Best foundations: 3INA 24h Foundation

(Image credit: 3INA)

1. 3INA 24h Foundation

This foundation has full staying-power around the clock

Reasons to buy
+Lasts from dusk to dawn+26 shades so huge choice of colour
Reasons to avoid
-Pump dispensed out more liquid than needed

When it comes to choosing the best foundation, you want one that is long-lasting and that will stand the test of time—and sweat, tears and other bodily functions – this ticks all the boxes. And that is the real sell here – it really does have staying power. Admittedly it was more a 16 hour day we trialled it for- from an early-morning school run, work, gym visit and evening out – and the foundation remained flawless.

Best foundations: Tropic Beauty Booster

(Image credit: Tropic)

2. Tropic Beauty Booster Sheer Foundation

The best weightless formula foundation

Reasons to buy
+Lovely consistency+Skin feels like silk
Reasons to avoid
-Only available in eight shades, so not as big a choice as others

For summer wear you don’t want anything thick and heavy, which is why the light coverage this foundation gives is perfect. It is so lightless you actually feel as though you are not wearing anything. The product glides onto the skin easily and gives a dewy look capable of covering up light imperfections. For more mature skin, I would either apply this more thickly or opt for a heavier formula. After weeks of going make-up free, this provided the perfect foundation to return too and because of its lightweight texture didn’t sit in the lines or wrinkles of the skin, just merely glided over them.

Best foundations: Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation

(Image credit: Chantecaille)

3. Chantecaille Future Skin Foundation

Full-coverage foundation for all weather

Reasons to buy
+Pure luxury+A tiny bit goes a long way
Reasons to avoid

When a foundation comes in at +£50 / $60, you have to question if it is really worth the price tag. Well, for someone with dry or sensitive skin, I have to say yes it is. Dark circles and dehydrated skin brought on by weeks of staying indoors and little exposure to sunlight need all the TLC we can get, and this product does what it says on the pot – it literally provides a future skin. Use sparingly as all you need is a few dabs on your brush for full coverage and the hydrating factor is almost instant as the foundation settles onto the skin. Blendable and buildable for a more dramatic shade or appearance, it is super easy to apply with zero caking effect.

Best foundations: IL MAKIAGE Foundation woke up like this

(Image credit: IL Makiage)

4. IL MAKIAGE Woke Up Like This Flawless Base Foundation

One of the most hyped makeup brands of the year

Reasons to buy
+50 shades for all skin tones+100% cruelty free
Reasons to avoid
-For buildable coverage you need to use quite a lot of product

There they are. Deep lines and wrinkles from a bad night’s sleep and you have an important Zoom work meeting. What do you do? Without a doubt reach for this foundation that has such a lightweight texture you can build upon it to provide medium-to-high coverage. All skin imperfections get covered up without leaving any cake or chalky foundation marks. As well as resulting in a natural matte finish, this product is ideal for mature skin, as it is packed with Vitamin E for anti-aging benefits and hyaluronic acid for hydration, protection and filling wrinkles.

Best foundations: Morphe fluidity full-coverage foundation

(Image credit: Morphe)

5. Morphe fluidity full-coverage foundation

An affordable foundation which sits nicely on your skin

Reasons to buy
+Stays put in the sun+huge number of shades
Reasons to avoid
-Limited stockists 

This foundation sits well (both in terms of price and on your skin) if you are looking for a good product at an affordable price. Once you have got past the difficult task of matching your skin tone to the right shade, then everything else blends in nicely. The constituency does come out a tiny bit thick so be sure to use sparingly. An excellent buy if you suffer with oily skin as it dries matte and calms everything down.

Best foundations: Clarins Everlasting Youth Fluid Foundation

(Image credit: Clarins)

6. Clarins Everlasting Youth Fluid Foundation SPF15

Bonus if you love makeup that has a strong skincare element!

Reasons to buy
+SPF15 provides UVA & UVB protection+Easy to blend
Reasons to avoid
-Glass bottle so not easily transportable

To its credit, for a brand best-known for skincare, Clarins has covered all stops (and spots) in creating this wonderfully flawless foundation. A product promising everlasting youth is a huge deal, but whatever your age, if you suffer from dehydrated skin, this instantly covers all bases whilst hydrating and plumping the skin. With extracts of chicory and red jania for brightness, the overall effect left skin dewy and glowing and felt refreshingly light on the skin. Available in 24 shades.

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