Unless you have oily skin, you won’t understand the struggles of maintaining a shine-free complexion in Singapore’s hot and humid weather. You have to give your skin adequate hydration to prevent your sebum glands from overproducing oil. You have to prevent your foundation from looking too dewy – because you would then become a greaseball by noon. And you have to find a foundation that doesn’t dry out your skin even while keeping your complexion looking fresh and matte the entire day.
Yes, it seems hard. But you just need to remember two key things besides getting a foundation with a matte finish. One: go for one with hydrating ingredients worked into its formula – it will help stave off overactive sebum production. Two: Go for one with a breathable formula so it doesn’t suffocate your skin and make it produce more sebum. Here are the best mattifying foundations that are good for oily skin.
1. Shu Uemura Unlimited Breathable Lasting Foundation, $72, in 24 shades
Tested in Singapore’s weather (yes, the Japanese brand chose our sunny island of all places to test the durability of their foundation), this foundation has a breakthrough formula that forms a “net” on skin for a second-skin finish. It has oil absorbers (a sponge-like powder) that absorbs sebum and sweat so your foundation looks fresh and natural the entire day. Plus, its 24 shades are developed based on an extensive study of over 3,000 Asian women, from North to South Asia, so chances are, you’ll be able to find a shade that disappears into your skin for a truly natural look.
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2. Hera Black Foundation SPF15/PA+, $75, in 12 shades
This liquid foundation is formulated with Alpine berry extract, Damask rose extract and hyaluronic acid to keep skin hydrated all day. And since hydrated skin is less likely to overproduce sebum, the foundation is suitable for people with oily and dehydrated skin.
3. Armani Beauty Power Fabric High Coverage Foundation Balm, $120, in 10 shades
This cream-to-powder foundation gives a flawless, non-greasy finish that stays put all day. We were bowled away by how this stayed intact and fresh-looking even after a 90-minute full-body massage session.
4. Three Pristine Complexion Powder Foundation (Slender Matte), $26 for the case, $68 for the refill, in eight shades
There are two types of finish for this compact foundation (Slender Matte and Slender Glow). Go for the former if you have oily-skin. The powder gives a lightweight, barely-there finish so it doesn’t suffocate skin. The formula also has nine botanical oils, including grapeseed oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil and shea butter to keep skin moisturised, and tea tree oil to combat blemishes.
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5. L’Oreal Paris Infallible 24H Freshwear, $32.90, in eight shades
Another breathable foundation, this new foundation from beauty giant L’Oreal Paris has oil absorbers that make it sweat- and water-resistant. The formula is also non-comedogenic so it doesn’t clog pores.
6. Beauty Blender Bounce Liquid Whip Long Wear Foundation, $60, in 40 shades
This whip-textured foundation has hyaluronic acid to hydrate skin and antioxidant-rich white birch extract to protect skin’s moisture barrier. It gives full coverage and is free from nasties such as mineral oil, sulphates, parabens and more, which means it’s less likely to clog up skin too.
7. Dior Diorskin Forever Foundation, $85, in eight shades
The reformulated Dior Forever foundation also comes in two finishes – matte and glow (in the same eight shades). Although both promise shine-free finish, we recommend those with oily skin to go for the matte version. It has absorbent spherical powders to absorb shine.
8. Kat Von D Beauty Lock-it Powder Foundation, $53, in 26 shades
This full-coverage powder foundation helps diminish the appearance of enlarged pores. Rice powder extract helps hide blemishes while kaolin (a mineral clay) imparts a matte finish without drying out skin.
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