I have a confession to make: Despite loving (and owning) an absurd amount of makeup, my favorite look of all is “no makeup” makeup. That’s right. While it may seem counterintuitive to wear makeup to… well, look as if I’m not wearing makeup, it’s actually a skill that requires just the right products.
Perhaps the single most important base for a “no makeup” makeup look is a great skin tint-style foundation. A tint-style foundation is similar to a tinted moisturizer but traditionally has even less coverage — although they’ve become enough of a trend that this is not *always* the case. However, a good rule of thumb is that a tint foundation will give you enough coverage to even out your skin a bit and give it a glow, but you can touch it up in spots with a great concealer.
I’m breaking down the best of the best natural-looking foundations I’ve tried over the years, from budget-friendly options to the ultra-luxe offerings you can find on the market.
Millie Bobby Brown‘s line florence by mills has a few cult-favorite products that have become beloved by all ages. One of them is the Like a Light Skin Tint Foundation, which is a sheer coverage formula available in 20 shades. Made with ingredients like meadowfoam seed oil, squalene, and jojoba oil, the skin tint provides just a minimal amount of coverage but is packed with glow for a radiant complexion.
One of the main reasons people have loved tint-style foundations so much is that coveted blurring effect. It makes your complexion look like your skin… but slightly more perfected. The NYX Bare With Me Blur Tint Foundation manages to do just that, with a medium coverage formula available in 24 shades. The formula includes ingredients like glycerin, matcha, and niacinamide that make this budget-friendly pick an ultra-hydrating option for dry skin!
When it comes to glowing skin, few companies do it better than Saie Beauty. The Saie Beauty Slip Tint offers sheer, dewy coverage with SPF 35. The formula is slightly thicker and tackier-feeling than many of the other options on this list, but when blended, it does something magical: It sets down to look just like skin. Available in 14 shades, the coverage for the Slip Tint is light enough that you can likely get away with wearing one or two different shades (while Shade 3 is my perfect match, I can also easily get away with Shade 4 if I want a slightly bronzed glow).
My skin has always been on the drier side, so I haven’t had to deal with the common complaint that those with oilier skin have about skin tints — that it will leave you looking even more oily. However, for those who do have oily skin, the Blurring Skin Tint from Fenty Beauty may change your tune on this type of makeup. The product comes in 25 shades, with light-to-medium coverage that you can easily build up. The formula is notable for its “blurring” effect, which will give you that “my skin but better” look that all skin tints hope to achieve.
Right off the bat, we have to acknowledge that the price tag for this foundation may make your wallet cry. But there’s a reason behind the number. Westman Atelier is a brand created by Gucci Westman, who you may know for being Jennifer Aniston’s makeup artist. She has created a luxe line of skin-loving makeup products, with the Complexion Drops being one of her latest creations. Packed with skincare ingredients, this natural-looking foundation (available in 20 shades) will make your complexion look luminous. Westman has described the desired effect as being straight out of a facial, and she’s not exaggerating — that’s the level of glow you’ll get here.
Let me put on my best Stefon voice to say that this tint has it all. If the skincare ingredients AND the SPF 40 coverage weren’t enough, let me just add in the fact that it has a surprising amount more coverage than you may expect. The formula is available in 30 shades, all of which are adaptable enough that you will likely have 2-3 shades that would work for you. Yes, the price is high, but if you are looking for a natural-looking foundation that truly does it all, start here.