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8 Best Foundations for Men – Peak Grooming in 2023

  • Sep 17, 2023
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8 Best Foundations for Men – Peak Grooming in 2023

Long gone are the days when make-up was just for women. Not unlike shampoos, colognes, body washes, and lotions, make-up is part of a solid grooming routine for men. Whether you want to conceal redness and undereye bags, cover blemishes, or hide razor burn, the best foundation for men is a tool you can use to look and feel your best—even when you’re not. Basically, there’s a real life filter for that.

There are make-up companies for guys disrupting the standard beauty industry and there are products out there marketed towards women, but all of them work for men. All you really need is skin to rock a great foundation. And because I’m a woman in the fashion and beauty industry who’s been wearing make-up for well over half my life, I promise you, I know the goods.

Social media has proven that foundation for men represents another step in grooming and hygiene that boosts confidence. Whether you want full coverage or a sheer, barely-there sheen to even out your skin tone, there is a product out there for you. I’m going to show you which ones do the best job when it comes to application, variety of tones, and overall feel on the skin.

Now let’s take a look at the 8 best foundations for men below.

Key Takeaways 

For this assignment, I began poring over hundreds of product reviews, photos, and even consulted my own bathroom cabinet until I narrowed down my results to the 8 finalists you see on this list.

Overall, the best foundation for men is Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r because it’s long-wear, full-coverage, and it prevents sweat, oil, and humidity from shining on the skin. For a solid budget pick, check out e.l.f. Flawless Finish Foundation.


Why it’s Great: Wondering why you haven’t heard any new Rihanna music in a minute? That’s because she’s been busy creating the wildly popular Fenty Beauty line. Pro Filt’r is a long-wear full-coverage foundation praised for its wide range of shades where traditional brands are lacking. I love that it gives your skin a soft matte finish, but perhaps its greatest feature is climate-adaptive technology that works with your skin to prevent sweat, oil, and humidity for a shine-free finish.

How to use it: One pump is all you need for all-over coverage. Apply with your fingers or a dampened beauty blender.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Matte foundations can sometimes make dry skin feel tight. Though I find it to be suitable for all skin types, it might not be the best option if you deal with excessively dry skin.

Size: 1.08 oz | Shades Available: 55 | Best For: Normal-oily skin | Coverage: Full | Finish: Matte | Formulation: Liquid

e.l.f. Flawless Finish Foundation

Why it’s Great: e.l.f. is an underrated drugstore beauty brand that provides high-end results at dirt cheap prices. Their flawless finish foundation is a go-to for many, but what makes it the best foundation for men is the way that it subtly improves uneven skin tone and texture. It’s semi-matte, meaning it’s neither dewy nor dry, and looks like just your natural skin.

How to use it: Like most foundations out there, it works best when applied evenly over the face using your fingertips or a blending brush.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Some reviewers found it to be thick, though not typically cakey on the skin.

Size: 0.68 oz | Shades Available: 40 | Skin Type: Normal to dry skin | Coverage: Full | Finish: Semi-matte | Formulation: Liquid

War Paint for Men Medium Coverage Foundation

Why it’s Great: After being bullied as a kid, Danny Gray wore make-up for 20 years before founding War Paint to help men feel comfortable buying it for themselves. The result is an award-winning brand that offers good-quality foundation (plus some pretty great grooming kits). Here, you’re going to get medium coverage with a natural-looking finish. This is ideal if you don’t want to look like you’re wearing make-up on a date or job interview. Plus, it works for sensitive, acne-prone skin.

How to use it: All it takes is one to two pumps applied evenly across the face with your fingers.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Some reviewers say the coverage is similar to their tinted moisturizer, which comes in at a slightly cheaper price point.

Size: 1 oz | Shades Available: 5 | Best For: All skin types | Coverage: Medium | Finish: Natural | Formulation: Liquid

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer

Why it’s Great: For decades, Nars has made stellar products across the board, and their tinted moisturizer is no exception. In fact, it’s one of their best-selling products because it gives skin a radiant, natural finish. Like any good moisturizer, it has hydrating ingredients like algae extract, glycerin, and Vitamin C, an antioxidant that protects, brightens, and evens out the skin. The end result is smooth and sheer with buildable coverage, meaning you can add more layers as needed.

How to use it: To apply, dispense a small amount and warm on fingertips. Press and gently blend onto the skin.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: A lot of reviewers have commented asking for more shades to match a larger variety of skin tones.

Size: 1.9 oz | Shades Available: 15 | Skin Type: All | Coverage: Sheer | Finish: Natural | Formulation: Liquid

Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint

Why it’s Great: Like BB creams, Ilia’s skin tint provides lightweight coverage. Because it’s packed with skincare ingredients like squalene, niacinamide, and hyaluronic acid that plump up the skin, I personally wear it daily. As someone with sensitive, acne-prone skin, I need a foundation that is clean, non-comedogenic (it won’t clog pores) and smoothes out my skin tone. Plus, it has SPF 40—every dude needs a good sunscreen in their arsenal.

How to use it: Shake before using, and gently rub in using your fingertips. I sometimes use a flat brush (here’s an affordable one I use from e.l.f.).

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Because it’s dewy, it might not be the best option if you have oily skin, though there’s the option to lightly power your t-zone.

Size: 1 oz | Shades Available: 29 | Best For: Normal to dry/combination skin | Coverage: Light | Finish: Dewy | Formulation: Liquid

Stryx Concealer Tool

Why it’s Great: Like a great deodorant or aftershave, concealer is a must-have. While the best foundation for men is about covering your entire face, concealer is about spot-application. This Stryx tool, which uses natural pigments for color, easily covers acne, razor burns, scars, and rosacea. Even though any brand of concealer can work for both men and women, I can appreciate that Stryx is marketed towards men. Its well-concealed design looks just like a pen and easily fits into your pocket.

How to use it: Gently tap the stick onto your blemish or under your eyes and blend with your finger.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: I do wish they provided more than just four shades, however the pigments are highly adaptable and are meant to match various skin tones.

Size: Not applicable | Shades Available: 4 | Best For: All skin types | Coverage: Full | Finish: Matte | Formulation: Stick

Tom Ford Traceless Foundation

Why it’s Great: This is the best foundation for men who want to achieve ‘no make-up’ make-up. That’s because it’s deliciously weightless and feels like a second skin. It works wonders at evenly covering bumps, texture, and redness for a smooth, natural-looking finish. I do wish it was cheaper, though the end results are honestly worth every penny if you can swing it.

How to use it: Because it conveniently comes in stick form, simply swipe on the skin and blend for buttery soft texture.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: It covers so well because it’s creamy yet light, but it might be too rich for oily skin types.

Size: 0.5 oz | Shades Available: 38 | Best For: Normal-dry skin | Coverage: Full | Finish: Natural | Formulation: Stick

Let’s Face It BB Tinted Moisturizer

Why it’s Great: Because BB creams are skin-first (they hydrate and illuminate the skin) they’re awesome for everyday. They add a perfect dollop of light coverage without that thick, heavy feeling. This one from Shake it Up is boosted with skin-plumping hyaluronic acid and nourishing vitamin E, plus SPF 25 for daily protection. Designed by men for men, rest easy knowing it’ll conceal redness discreetly.

How to use it: Light and sheer, this BB cream provides buildable coverage that can be massaged into the skin using your fingertips.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Some reviewers say the consistency is thick and more on par with a foundation than a moisturizer.

Size: 1.67 oz | Shades Available: 5 | Best For: All skin types | Coverage: Light | Finish: Natural | Formulation: Liquid

Buying Considerations for The Best Foundation For Men

Shade

When it comes to the best foundation, finding a shade that matches your skin tone is most important. This will make coverage look as natural as possible. A lot of brands have shade-finding tools built into their websites, but you can always go to Sephora and ask a professional to help match the correct shade to your skin tone.

Ingredients

If you have allergies or sensitive skin, checking out the ingredients list of a product is crucial. A couple products on this list are natural, but most are chemically derived.

It can be tough to get lasting coverage with all-natural make-up, but brands like Ilia do a great job. Because I included tinted moisturizers and BB creams on this list, you’ll find skin-nourishing ingredients like hyaluronic acid and glycerin, and SPFs. These help to plump, hydrate, and protect the skin while also concealing blemishes.

Skin Type

While finding your best shade is critical, so is finding the right product for your skin type. If you have oily skin, avoid thick, rich products that give off a glowy or dewy sheen. If your skin is dry, avoid overly matte products. This will only contribute to a dry appearance on your skin. Fortunately, all of the best foundations on this list specify the skin type they work best for, so be sure to correctly read labels and product information.

Why you should trust us

As a fashion and grooming expert at FashionBeans, I love testing and researching products that help you look and feel amazing. For this review, I researched a host of trusted sources and even perused my own make-up cabinet to truly understand what makes a great foundation for men based on skin type, skin tone, and overall look and feel of the product.

I started with over 50 considerations before narrowing it down to the top 8 products that will best fit a range of discerning customers. Ultimately, I want to make sure everyone finds the best foundation.

Final Verdict 

The best foundation for men should adequately cover the skin with a natural-looking finish. It should also work with your skin tone to avoid an overly oily or dry appearance. I love Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r because it provides long-wear full-coverage in the largest variety of shades.

FAQ

    • Absolutely! Anyone who wishes to conceal blemishes and create a more even skin tone can wear foundation, especially for important occasions like interviews, dates, and weddings, where you want to look your best.

      • Men can use the same foundation that women use, though there are products like War Paint marketed towards men specifically.

        • Make use of the ‘how to find my shade’ tool many brands provide on their website. Don’t be afraid to head to Sephora and get color matched by a professional.


Disclaimer: This story is auto-aggregated by a computer program and has not been created or edited by menshealthfits.
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