Drugstore Foundations

20 Best Drugstore Foundation Ideas to Help You Look Your Best

Victoria Rogers Makeups

Are you tired of looking and looking for the best drugstore foundation? Well, look no further. Out of all of the choices available for you to look your best, we have done the research for you. No longer do you have to try on different foundations or look through pictures and testimonials of basic online reviews or descriptions. Ever notice that online descriptions or pictures of products do not fully describe what you are looking for in a foundation? It is much easier to go to the drugstore, touch the products, and even try some on against your skin tone. Drugstore foundations are the same ones you can find online or in department stores while shopping for other important items you might need. They provide the overall smooth, error-free coverage you are looking for, and come in many shades from the lightest to the deepest tones.

20 Cheap Foundations You Can Find at Your Local Drugstore

Best Drugstore Foundation

Famous brands can be found in your local drugstore along with brands you might not have heard of before. Many women are interested in looking and feeling their best when wearing makeup or some simply would like a great everyday foundation that fits their skin type. What works for one woman may not work for another seeing as skin ranges from normal to oily and even dry. Some women experience a combination skin type where they require a specific foundation. No matter what is needed, there is no need to break the bank. Whether you are looking for a foundation that is easy to use, has a pump, is a cream or powder, or comes in more than 30 tones, the drugstore is the place to find your perfect foundation. If you are looking for all-day wear or evening foundations, take a look at 20 of the best drugstore foundation options we have provided for you:

1. Maybelline Super Stay Full Coverage Foundation

Maybelline Super Stay Full Coverage Foundation

This liquid foundation is fade and transfer-resistant- set it and forget it! Not only does it cover fully, but it also does not clog the pores and comes in shades ranging from Light Tan (140. to Natural Beige (220), to Espresso (380). Along with having a shade of every skin tone, this is a good drugstore foundation because it is perfect for women whose skin tones might change depending on the seasons. This foundation has an easy glide applicator that hides scars, freckles, and imperfection areas thoroughly.

2. Covergirl Trublend Matte Made Liquid Foundation

Covergirl Trublend Matte Made Liquid Foundation

This is a liquid foundation but has a matte finish. It comes in over 40 shades with Fair Porcelain (L10. being the lightest to the deepest shade of Espresso (90). It is easily one of the best cheap foundations found in drugstores because it is animal and cruelty-free and works on all skin types. This foundation comes in pore minimizing and combination for those who have oily and dry skin combined. The packaging is really nice and easy to hold where the foundation comes out in a pump.

3. L’Oreal Infallible Fresh Wear 24HR Foundation

LOreal Infallible Fresh Wear 24HR Foundation

This 24-hour foundation is one of the best drugstore foundation choices simply because of the mention of resisting sweat, water, and transfer. There are not many foundations that mention sweat and water or being waterproof. It is a liquid foundation with SPF with over 30 shades, it is suitable for all skin types. Although this is a cheaper 24-hour foundation, you are getting long wear and the full coverage suggested.

4. Colourpop Pretty Fresh Foundation

Colourpop Pretty Fresh Foundation

The Colourpop Pretty Fresh Foundation is oil-free, vegan, dermatologist tested, and comes in over 40 shades. Not many cheap foundations or makeup items are vegan, so this is a positive thing all on its own! Unlike some other foundations, it comes with an easy to use pump and suggests to prep with the Pretty Face Primer. It does a good job of evening out your skin tone and giving a natural makeup look without caking when using a sponge and more coverage with a brush.

5. Maybelline Dream Urban Cover Flawless Coverage Foundation SPF 50

Maybelline Dream Urban Cover Flawless Coverage Foundation SPF 50

The antioxidants and SPF of this foundation make it one that is a must-try product. It comes in 16 shades where the packaging is a squeeze bottle and is a lightweight cream, but also provides full, natural coverage. This foundation is best used with a brush which helps to even out any red spots, freckles, scars, or problem areas.

6. Makeup Revolution Conceal & Define Full Coverage Foundation

Makeup Revolution Conceal & Define Full Coverage Foundation

This foundation has a beautiful, pink package with a stick applicator and comes in 50 lightweight shades. It also is vegan, cruelty, paraben, and oil-free. It is a true full coverage foundation to cover pores and blemishes uneven skin tones. It feels as if it melts into the skin and does not feel heavy on the face. Using a sponge or brush gives the same effect of full coverage, quality foundation.

7. ELF Flawless Finish Foundation

ELF Flawless Finish Foundation

Depending on where you go, the amount of shades varies for this foundation. There are 40 shades online and around 15-20 shades in the drugstore. From looking at the frosted bottle that ELF provides, you can get a good feel for which shade you should use. It is a liquid foundation, oil-free, and provides a long-lasting semi-matte finish. It doesn’t feel too heavy and gives a full satin look that is not dry and not dewy or “wet” either. You do not need a lot of this foundation for a natural look.

8. NYX Born To Glow Foundation

NYX Born To Glow Foundation

This NYX Foundation comes in over 30 shades and provides more descriptive tone comparisons such as medium, deep, cool undertone, neutral undertone, or warm undertone. This helps the user to determine which shade will best match your skin. Having the squeeze bottle application makes NYX Born To Glow an overall good drugstore foundation if you are looking for medium coverage with a glow effect.

9. No. 7 Lift & Luminate Foundation

No. 7 Lift and Luminate Foundation

This foundation is anti-aging or wrinkle-covering and a great drugstore choice for normal to very dry skin types. It has SPF 15 and lasts all day. It comes in 10-14 colors ranging from Calico (light tan) to Mocha (brown). It can be found at Walgreens and Target. This foundation works best with a brush for the first application and smoothing out with a sponge for any areas that may need more coverage. When taking pictures with a flash, this finished look provides a natural makeup layer to your natural face.

10. Flower Beauty Light Illusion Luminous Makeup

Flower Beauty Light Illusion Luminous Makeup

This gel-like foundation sits on the skin beautifully and has a moisturizing feel. It looks great on any dry-ness or scars. One layer of the foundation is enough when using a brush and provides a full coverage look. This drugstore foundation comes in 12 shades and provides a smooth, liquid natural finish. Shade ranges for Flower Beauty Light Illusion are from porcelain (light) to Sable (brown mocha).

11. Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stick

Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stick

Not many foundations come in a stick and the Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stick looks just as awesome as it feels. This foundation comes in over 30 shades where you can select your skin tone and undertone. It is almost weightless and leaves the skin looking natural. It is a good foundation for anyone who has combination skin (oily to dry). The stick glides very well overall skin types and is not cakey.

12. Covergirl Healthy Elixir Foundation

Covergirl Healthy Elixir Foundation

There are a total of 14 Covergirl Healthy Elixir Foundation shades that come with vitamins and minerals to add moisture. It has a nice, almost soap-like fragrance to it with a good medium coverage finish. If you are looking for a dewy, long-lasting finish, this is the foundation for you. It works wonderfully on regular to oily skin types. It is suggested to use the Covergirl TruBlend Face Primer before applying this foundation.

13. Physicians Formula The Healthy Foundation

Physicians Formula The Healthy Foundation

This foundation comes in 16 shades ranging from light cool to a deep, rich neutral 4 (dark). It amazingly has SPF 20, Vitamins A, C, & E, and a brightening complex inside. The packaging is beautiful and has a wand applicator to help with easy, full coverage using a brush. This foundation feels very light and still looks like your skin with a natural finish. It works on regular to combination (regular/oily) skin types. It is a good foundation for most day use where after 3-4 hours.

14. Maybelline Matte + Poreless Foundation

Maybelline Matte + Poreless Foundation

This Maybelline Foundation comes in over 40 shades, is dermatologist and allergy tested, and has a beautiful, catchy look to its packaging. It is great for normal to oily skin for all-day wear. This is a good drugstore foundation with a lightweight feel of medium to full coverage. You can use a sponge or brush to get the full benefits. For anyone with more tan or deep skin tones, this is one of the best drugstore foundation choices because it offers a variety of shades for all skin types.

15. Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation

Catrice HD Liquid Coverage Foundation

This liquid foundation is very lightweight and covers very well. For a natural to dramatic look, one layer of this foundation is enough. It comes in over 30 shades where Light Beige (010 Nude) is the lightest and Deep Mocha (098. is the darkest so there is a color for everyone! There is a dropper application that is unique to this brand and it is vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, alcohol-free, oil-free, and paraben-free.

16. Milani Conceal & Perfect Foundation

Milani Conceal & Perfect Foundation

When using the Milani Conceal & Perfect Foundation, using a brush helps with using less product than a sponge for full coverage. This is one of the cheaper foundations with a lot to offer. It is a concealer, foundation, water-resistant, and comes in 45 shades, from light (Alabaster) to deep/dark (Truffle). This is one foundation that provides concealer as well and has a variety of shades for all skin types and shades.

17. L’Oreal Paris Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation

LOreal Paris Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation

For women looking for something for “mature” skin, this is the foundation for you. It is hydrating, has SPF 50, Vitamin B3, and evens the skin tone to provide a lightweight, natural finish. There are 30 shades to pick from and it is designed to cover regular to dry skin, pores, and lines perfectly. One layer, used with a brush is enough to give full, natural-looking coverage. The L’Oreal Paris Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation has a dewy look with a good glow finish to it.

18. Wet n Wild Photo Focus Dewy Foundation

Wet n Wild Photo Focus Dewy Foundation

This is one of Wet N Wild’s cheaper foundations which comes with a spatula-like applicator, where you do not need to use a lot of product. There are 20 vegan, gluten-free shades of dewy liquid foundation. Having 20 shades is a plus when selecting a good drugstore foundation for all-day coverage. It works on normal to dry skin and provides a hydrating glow. You can use either a sponge or a brush to spread this foundation but a brush gives more coverage than a sponge.

19. CoverGirl, Olay Simply Ageless Foundation

CoverGirl, Olay Simply Ageless Foundation

This CoverGirl, Olay Foundation comes in a compact-type of packaging and is cruelty-free. There are 8 shades ranging from Ivory 205 (light) to Natural Beige 240 (medium tan). It is neat that CoverGirl and Olay have teamed up to create this product with an anti-aging serum for fine lines and wrinkles. The compact case makes it easy to use with a brush or sponge instead of having to squeeze out of a bottle or onto your hand for easy application. You can also see the color of this foundation easily through the packaging.

20. Maybelline Dream Radiant Liquid Foundation

Maybelline Dream Radiant Liquid Foundation

Although this foundation states that it is liquid, it has more of a cream consistency but, it still has a lightweight feel. It comes in 20 natural shades and contains Hyaluronic Acid (Hydrating). The packaging is beautiful and there is a pump applicator which makes it very easy to use. Because it is a light to medium coverage feel, this would be considered a good drugstore foundation. It is a nice, buildable coverage foundation that does last for more than 10 hours as it suggests.

FAQ About Drugstore Foundation

What does the foundation do to your face?

In makeup terms, the foundation is the layer between your skin and the rest of your makeup. It is the base that creates a uniform, even-colored complexion. The foundation covers flaws, scars, and uneven skin tone. It is applied after serums, moisturizers, and sunscreen and before all other makeup.

Should I use BB or CC cream or foundation?

Knowing the differences will help you know which is suitable for your skin. BB cream provides the least amount of coverage and has the most skincare ingredients in the product. CC cream is for correcting color and may have a bit of skincare treatment in it. Foundation is for covering, correcting, and evening out the complexion. Foundation has the highest amount of coverage. Choosing which one you should use is based on your skin condition and how much coverage you want.

What drugstore foundation has the best coverage?

Here is another example of the best being subjective to what your skin needs. However, the best overall drugstore foundation seems to be Maybelline New York SuperStay Full Coverage Foundation. This foundation works well with all skin tones, is used by celebrity makeup artists, and has amazing pigmentation.

Should I spend a lot of money on the foundation?

You should only spend a lot of money on foundation if you find that higher-end foundations work better for your skin than drugstore brands. Many have very similar ingredients; therefore, don't spend extra unnecessarily.

What is the best drugstore dewy foundation?

Dewy foundations promise to leave your skin hydrated and naturally moisturized looking. The best drugstore dewy foundation is L'Oreal's Infallible Pro-Glow foundation which is sheer, buildable, and feels like nothing is on the skin.

Top 20 Best Drugstore Foundation Choices Under $20

As you can see, there are different types of foundations ranging from liquid, powder, whipped, stick foundation, mineral powder, tinted moisturizer, blemish balm, color correcting, or a combination of them all. For years, women in the United States have been looking for a good drugstore foundation that doesn’t break the bank. What worked on your skin as a teenager definitely doesn’t work now and what works for one skin type won’t work for another. It is important that we understand the different ingredients and purposes of our foundations. All makeup looks start with the foundation and build upon it. Whether you are looking based on price, coverage, or for your skin type, the best drugstore foundation is possible to find for under $20.

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About the Author
Victoria Rogers

Victoria is an ex-makeup artist and full-time assistant editor at TheCuddl. Even though she stopped working in the industry, makeup remains Victoria’s main passion alongside blogging. Now she combines these passions in order to help people discover a wide variety of classy and fresh makeup styles. Her family and dogs are Victoria’s biggest sources of joy, but the fresh smell of pastry comes in a close second. Whenever she’s not typing at the keyboard, Victoria spends most of her free time testing new makeup products, watching movies, and drawing. See all articles from Victoria.