Foundations. There are probably more bottles than faces to cover. And while all that choice may appear to make your decision easier, it can actually make things more confusing. Shade matching, knowing your skin type, coverage... there's a lot to consider and, more importantly, will it last until after-work drinks? Not all foundations are created equal, but some – old faithfuls, cult hits and hyped new releases – are head and shoulders above the rest.
Well, stop right there: consider us your guinea pigs. We’ve done the legwork and come out on the other side with a list of foundations worthy to be deemed timeless classics. These aren’t necessarily the new kids in the makeup aisle, but they’re the shades and textures we can rely on every time.
Click through to find our our editors' trusty maquillage heroes.
When it comes to stick foundations that glide like a balm and last hours
, this is the one to beat. Bobbi Brown's stick foundation has stood the test of time thanks to its huge range of shades and colour-correcting pigments. Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Stick, £31, available at Bobbi Brown. More
Say bye bye to a 3pm oil-slicked face. This compact may be shiny, but the powder within will ensure that your face isn't.
Pur 4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Powder Foundation SPF 15, £27, available at Marks and Spencer More
Bobbi Brown’s foundation gives you super-light coverage that is still buildable, with the added bonus of SPF. Plus, because it’s water-based, it’s extra-hydrating so it won’t cake on your skin by midday.
Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation, £34, available at Bobbi Brown More
Shiseido’s Synchro Skin Lasting Liquid Foundation combines mother-of-thyme and St. John’s Wort extracts to prevent skin roughness and damage from oxidation. Neat, huh?
Shiseido Synchro Skin Lasting Liquid Foundation, £32, available at House of Fraser More
The words matte and hydrating may sound like a contradiction, but this antioxidant-rich tinted moisturiser has a mousse-like texture that takes to the skin seamlessly — and leaves our complexions soft and shine-free.
Jouer Matte Moisture Tint, £33, available at Cult Beauty More
This one combines all the best parts of a tinted moisturiser, CC and BB cream. It blends right in and covers minor scratches, blemishes, and dark spots — so no concealer necessary — while leaving your skin actually looking like skin.
bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream, £27, available at bareMinerals More Read more
Finally, a glow-inducing foundation that lets freckles show through and blends well. This one is great for summer when you need sun protection and less coverage.
Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder Foundation, £32, available at Charlotte Tilbury More
We're obsessed with cushion foundations right now – you use half the amount of product than with a liquid number, which always leaves residue in our brush. Pat this light formula where needed for medium coverage and a healthy glow.
L'Oréal Paris Nude Magique Cushion Foundation, £14.99, available at Boots More
While Giorgio Armani’s Luminous Silk Foundation is a bit of a splurge, you get your bang for your buck with this buildable-coverage base. The lightweight liquid really does feel like silk on your skin, providing a sheer coverage that you can easily control and build up.
Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, £40, available at Debenhams More
If a dewy finish isn't for you, this matte formula is what you're looking for. It sets to a smooth, velvety finish that won't cling to dry patches or blemishes. A tinted moisturiser with SPF that's hydrating and free of oil? We'll take 10.
NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint SPF 30, £30, available at NARS More
This luminous foundation from L’Oréal is made with 40% water, so it's great at stopping your skin drying out. And with the added antioxidants and vitamins, it not only provides lightweight coverage but helps to improve skin’s tone.
L’Oréal Paris Lumi Magique Foundation, £10.99, available at Boots More
Make Up For Ever's cult-favourite foundation is a winner because of its natural-looking finish. It's perfect for up-close selfies because it keeps your skin looking, well, skin-like.
Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation, £29, available at Debenhams More
Laura Mercier’s foundations are hands-down some of our favourite. This trusty number has one of the easiest applications on the market. It evens skin tone, helping you achieve an overall glow.
Laura Mercier Silk Crème Oil Free Photo Edition Foundation, £35, available at Space.NK More Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here? The Easiest Way To Wear This Tricky Colour On Your Eyes & Lips This Beauty Brand Doesn't Want To Sell To Anyone Who Supports Trump NARS Just Launched 10 New Shades Of This Beloved Product