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Foundation Alternatives That Won’t Sweat Off

Foundation Alternatives That Won’t Sweat Off

Photo: Patric Shaw/Trunk Archive

Foundation’s called foundation for a reason—it anchors everything else you do to your face, evens out your skin, blurs any blemishes, and gives you a little boost of confidence. Until, that is, it starts melting off your face. Which is why it’s the first thing to go come summer. If you haven’t already found your go-to tinted moisturizer or alphabet cream, we asked a handful of makeup artists to share their favorites. Your skin will be happier—and so will you.

Makeup artist Ashleigh Ciucci is a fan of Peter Thomas Roth CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30 ($48). “It’s a super-creamy CC, but with little texture, nor slimy midday glide,” she says. If it’s really humid, she’ll set it with the brand’s Instant Mineral Powder SPF 45 ($32). At the drugstore, Ciucci picks up Garnier Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector Anti-Aging BB Cream. This one’s “great for those with more mature skin because of its hydrating properties, but it feels like water on the skin; it’s not greasy.” 

The former Makeup Department Supervisor for LOST, Emily Katz, knows a thing or two about managing humid environments like Hawaii—all with the added complexity of shooting in HD. She loves the natural finish of Jan Marini Antioxidant Daily Face Protectant Tinted SPF 33 ($54). “I use this daily, and it lasts through heat, moisture, and water,” says Katz. “It is sheer with minimal coverage, but it’s enough to even out skin tone, and never looks like foundation.” She suggests blotting with a tissue before applying the rest of your makeup to avoid any extra shine. 

Katz is also a fan of Kate Somerville Illumikate CC Cream ($48). “It holds on well and comes in a number of colors,” she says. Don’t be afraid if it looks orange at first. “I find it usually fades and blends into the skin.” Two more favorites: Estee Lauder DayWear Anti-oxidant Beauty Benefit Cream SPF 35 ($40), and It Cosmetics Anti-aging Physical SPF 50 CC Cream ($34.68)

For women of color, Katz recommends the light, oil-free BlackUp CC Cream ($39.50), which also boasts sebum-fighting qualities. “BlackUp also has a ‘100% no ashy finish’ guarantee. This is awesome for women of color, because ingredients like titanium oxide—which are used to make products more opaque and are frequently used as non-chemical sunblocks—create a greyish cast in many CC creams and sunscreens.”

Lastly, makeup artist Julia Dalton-Brush notes that her clients prefer lightweight formulas with a beautiful finish, even at the sacrifice of full coverage. “It’s important for me to find products that will stay with my clients throughout the day,” she says, noting that Ardency Inn Custom Coverage Concentrate ($38) fits the bill because she can customize it to the client’s needs. “I mix a pea-size amount with my favorite moisturizer to create the perfect tinted moisturizer. You can add a touch more concentrate for additional coverage where you need it.” 

Dalton-Brush calls NARS Pure Radiance Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 ($42) “beautifully blend-able and perfectly sheer,” and she’s also a fan of Dior Hydra Life BB Cream ($56). “It gives a gorgeous dewy effect without looking sweaty,” she says.

Or you can just jump on our bandwagon, and ditch makeup altogether!