It’s no wonder people with sensitive skin have nightmares about finding the perfect foundation. Try the wrong formula and you may get hives, irritation, breakouts or redness not to mention the loss of a substantial amount of money.

While a lot of foundations love to say that they have gentle formulas or are made for the sensitive skin crowd, you know by now that labels cannot always be trusted.

Every skin type is being catered to nowadays, and the best foundation for sensitive skin on this list actually have gentle formulas that will pamper even the most sensitive of skin types.

Here are the best foundations that won’t send your skin into a frenzy.

The Best Foundations for Sensitive Skin in 2020 Guide

1. Dermablend Flawless Creator Multi-Use Liquid Foundation

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There are over 10 ingredients in this formula and none of them include phthalates or parabens, which is already a great start for any sensitive skin foundation. It’s blendable and provides buildable coverage, with a texture that is so lightweight that even if you pile it on your face, the world would be never know.

Made using pure pigments, you’ll get seamless full coverage that is never cakey, but always silky smooth. Oil-free and water-free it is non-comedogenic and sensitive-skin tested, suitable for all skin types and many skin tones.

2. Honest Beauty Everything Cream Foundation

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A combination of jojoba oil and vitamin E give this foundation the gentle reputation it’s known for. Made without talc, silicones, phthalates and petrolatum, it is a cruelty-free, hypoallergenic product that has been dermatologist tested so you can use it with confidence.

Buildable medium to full coverage with a creamy texture, its mineral pigments smoothly and evenly blend into your skin. The demi-matte finish feels like velvet and is gorgeous.

3. Wander Flash Focus Hydrating Foundation

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When it gets cold, sensitive skin can get especially irritated, which is when this super-hydrating foundation can really come to the rescue.

Infused with hyaluronic acid, coconut oil and vitamin C among other things, the foundation softens skin and acts as a moisturizer. Buildable for sheer, medium or full coverage, the creamy foundation also contains skincare benefits thanks to sodium hyaluronate that plumps skin to diminish wrinkles and fine lines.

4. Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Water Foundation w/ SPF 15

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Dry skin or skin that is seeing signs of aging, along with being sensitive, will enjoy this hypoallergenic vegan foundation. Packed with skincare ingredients like marine plant extracts and vitamin E, this foundation smoothens and softens skin and reduces the appearance of laugh lines and wrinkles. It also provides broad spectrum sunscreen protection as an added bonus.

A liquid foundation with buildable medium coverage, it delivers a weightless, natural finish that makes skin look flawless.

5. Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Powder Foundation

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An oil-free mineral foundation pressed powder that will leave even the most sensitive skin with a glowy, soft finish thanks to gentle minerals like silica and mica which were handpicked by dermatologists.

Featuring a blendable texture and antioxidants, it allows you to build the coverage you need, ranging from sheer all the way to medium, you’ll never have a heavy, cakey makeup feel or look. The compact design is also perfect for quick and easy touch ups that are mess-free.

6. Maybelline New York FIT Me Matte + Poreless Liquid Foundation w/ SPF 18

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A great affordable drugstore option that gives skin medium coverage, it comes in 40 shades so every sensitive skin tone can benefit from the pore-minimizing formula. Those with irritable skin will enjoy the way it doesn’t cling to dry skin patches and it doesn’t clog pores, refining them instead, which is a relief for acne-prone skin.

No matter if you have sensitive skin that is dry, oily or normal skin, it doesn’t irritate skin and provides good sun protection as well as a fabulous matte finish that looks very natural.

7. Covergirl Clean Matte Liquid Foundation

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A great choice for delicate skin, this gentle formula will not clog pores and is made with oil absorbers that give you all the shine control you could possibly want. Gentle conditioners aid in preventing skin from drying out.

Fragrance-free and oil-free, it is dermatologist tested and provides hour after hour of matte, shine-free perfection.

How to Pick the Best Foundation for Sensitive Skin

Though choosing the right foundation for sensitive skin can be tricky, it’s not an impossible task. You want to find the makeup that gives you a healthy appearance while smoothing over blemishes or imperfections and giving your overall complexion a boost.

With this guide, you won’t have to keep guessing at what your skin may need. You’ll be able to avoid foundations that leave your skin in a worse condition.

Ingredients to Avoid

It always helps if you know what triggers your skin to become irritated. While some people with sensitive skin react to dyes and fragrances, other people may experience breakouts caused by oils. There’s a long list of ingredients that are potentially triggering, but here are the biggest ones to steer clear from.

  • Synthetic fragrances: Look for labels that list formulas as unscented or fragrance free.
  • Dyes: It is very true that dyes are unnecessary in foundation, even in tinted BB and CC creams.
  • Preservatives: Avoid parabens, imidazolidinyl urea, methylchloroisothiazolinone and Phenoxyethanol.

When possible avoid all chemicals to eliminate the chances of severe reactions.

Foundations Based on Skin Type

Liquid, mineral, cakes, powder and stick foundations are all available to you, but come with their own set of pros and cons. It’s imperative that you choose the right one based on your particular kind of sensitive skin.

Oily skin

If your sensitive skin is oily, issues like excess shine, acne scars, hyperpigmentation and breakouts are most likely a common occurrence if your skin becomes irritated. It is recommended that you use water-based liquid foundation or a powder foundation.

Matte foundation formulas will help reduce the appearance of shiny skin. Look for foundations that are non-comedogenic; they are least likely to clog your pores

Dry skin

A feeling of tightness leading to discomfort is a common symptom of this skin type. To keep skin from becoming irritated, consider using cream based liquid stick foundations to keep skin hydrated and happy.

Combination skin

Your skin deals with breakouts in some areas and extreme dry patches in others. Cream-to-powder foundations help your skin type look and feel its best, along with mineral powder foundation.

If you have skin that gets oilier in the summer, a loose mineral powder will help. If your skin gets dry in the winter, cream-based foundations will help you thrive.

Mature skin

Women with aging skin should choose the foundation that correlates to their type of skin.

For dry skin, stick and creamy formulas are the best. If your aging skin is also oily, loose mineral powders and oil-free foundations will give you the best results.

Get Smooth, Calm Skin

No longer will you have to be your own guinea pig. With the best foundations for sensitive skin, you’ll have a gentle formula that provides the perfect coverage.

You might also be interested in these foundations for other skin types:

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