9 Best Makeup Artist-Recommended Drugstore Full-Coverage Foundations

Get a luxurious natural-looking finish with these affordable foundations.

Reviewed by Cha Cha Woska, Certified Makeup Artist Cha Cha Woska Cha Cha WoskaCertified Makeup Artist insta_icon
Written by , MA (English) Baishali Bhattacharya MA (English)
Edited by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant Srijani Roy Chowdhury MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant Experience: 3 years
Fact-checked by , MBA, Certified Skin Care Coach Krati Darak MBA, Certified Skin Care Coach Experience: 3 years
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If you are looking for foundations at affordable prices, checking some of the best drugstore full-coverage foundations out there will help. They can give you all the benefits of an expensive foundation at a lesser price. Some of the top-notch drugstore foundations will give you a wide range of shades, the ability to blend well with a natural-looking finish. What’s more, some of them may benefit your skin in the long run. Save yourself time and energy and pop down to your local drugstore. Here are our top drugstore foundations to give you a flawless look on a budget.

Top Picks
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Best Overall: Revlon ColorStay Liquid Foundation Matte Finish
Price on Amazon
Best Budget: Maybelline New York Super Stay Active Wear Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Hydrating Formula: Phoera Coverage Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Lightweight: Nyx Professional Makeup Can't Stop Won't Stop Full Coverage Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Dermatologist-Tested Formula: Dermablend Professional Cover Creme
Price on Amazon
Best Sun Protection: e.l.f. Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Long-Lasting: Frankie Rose Cosmetics Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Breathable: Covergirl Outlast Extreme Wear 3-In-1 Foundation
Price on Amazon
Best Waterproof: DC Dermacol Make-Up Cover
Price On Amazon

9 Best Recommended Drugstore Full-Coverage Foundations

1. Best Overall:Revlon ColorStay Liquid Foundation Matte Finish

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4.4

Revlon Colorstay foundation is dermatologist-developed to reduce blemishes and dark spots. The matte-finish formula gives full coverage and suits medium and combination skin. With SPF-15, it gives you 24-hour protection from sun damage. The creamy formula reduces pigmentation and keeps your skin hydrated. With continuous use, it gives your skin tone a brighter finish. This matte finish foundation is available in 43 shades to suit all skin tones. Check this video featuring a reviewer’s experience of using the foundation and learn more about this affordable beauty product!

Product Dimensions: 1.25 x 1.25 x 4.13 inches | Weight: 1.06 Ounces

Pros

  • Oil-free
  • Lightweight
  • Sun protection
  • Buildable coverage
  • Naturally smooth look
  • Available in 43 shades

Cons

  • Not long-lasting
worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

A whopping 15,761 reviews on Amazon make it obvious that users genuinely love this product.

2. Best Budget:Maybelline New York Super Stay Active Wear Foundation

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4.2

The celebrity-endorsed Maybelline New York activewear foundation is a full-coverage foundation that gives your skin a seamless finish and is a favorite of many celebrity makeup artists. Its long-lasting formula is highly pigmented to give buildable coverage. This oil-free foundation prevents pimples and pore-clogging and makes your skin blemish-free. The lightweight, buildable formula conceals your skin’s imperfections for a flawless look. Take a look at this video that details a tester’s experience of using the product. It will help you receive more information on this high-coverage, dermatologist-tested foundation.

Skin Type: AllColor: 115 IVORY | Product Dimensions: 1.18 x 1.18 x 4.61 inches | Weight: 0.81 Ounces.

Pros

  • Doesn’t fade
  • Lightweight
  • Oil-free formula
  • Dermatologist-tested

Cons

  • Not suitable for very oily skin

protip_icon Pro Tip
The best way to ensure complete coverage is to dab foundation on each side of your nose, forehead, and chin and then blend it outwards. Build it up until you achieve the desired coverage.

3. Best Hydrating Formula:Phoera Coverage Foundation

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4.2

If you need a foundation for flawless coverage, check out the Phoera liquid foundation. It is designed to cover uneven blemishes on your skin. The creamy formula reduces pigmentation and keeps your skin hydrated. It contains moisturizing and whitening components to keep your skin hydrated and glowing. With regular use, it gives your skin tone a brighter finish. Whether you need a foundation for dry skin or sensitive skin types, this natural formula suits all skin types. As stated by multiple reviewers, it also promises long-lasting results, another reason for you to try this product pronto!

Skin Type: AllColor: 103- Warm peach | Product Dimensions: 3.74 x 1.26 x 1.26 inches | Weight: 3.21 Ounces.

Pros

  • Oil-free
  • Hydrating
  • Available in 10 shades
  • Waterproof
  • Crease-proof

Cons

  • Thick consistency

4. Best Lightweight:Nyx Professional Makeup Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Full Coverage Foundation

This foundation has a lightweight formula to give you an improved skin tone. It imparts buildable coverage and blends smoothly into your skin. This foundation for long wear delivers a matte coverage that can take you through the entire day and is a favorite of many celebrity makeup artists. With just the right amount of drop from the pump, this makeup product gives you full coverage for a fine skin tone. The natural formula hides your scars and blemishes and imparts a stunning finish to your skin. This video features a tester’s experience of using the foundation. It offers a more detailed explanation of the product.

Skin Type: All | Color: 08 TRUE BEIGE

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof
  • Highly-pigmented
  • Long-lasting
  • Color-correcting formula
  • Available in 45 color shades

Cons

  • May not suit dry skin

protip_icon Quick Tip
Ears are often overlooked during the makeup application process. Apply foundation over them and blend them with the rest of the face, especially if you have red lobes.

5. Best Dermatologist-Tested Formula:Dermablend Professional Cover Creme

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4.4
Dermablend Image: Dermablend Professional Cover Creme

Dermablend Professional Foundation is a liquid-based formula that imparts medium to full coverage. The gentle formula helps conceal all your skin imperfections for a flawless look. It is transfer-resistant and lends your skin a natural finish that is non-cakey and is a must-have in your makeup routine. This hydrating foundation is formulated with SPF-30 to protect your skin from sun damage and all-day hydration. The dermatologist-tested and created formula prevents clogging of pores to make your skin radiant. Furthermore, it is also tested for allergens, making it suitable for sensitive skin types.

Skin Type: Combination, Oily Sensitive, NormalColor: 35C Medium Beige: For medium skin with very cool undertones | Product Dimensions: 2.31 x 2.31 x 2.5 inches | Weight: 0.96 Ounces

Pros

  • All-day hydration
  • Natural finish
  • Non-cakey
  • Fragrance-free
  • Allergy-tested
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Dermatologist-tested

Cons

  • May not cover deep scars

protip_icon Did You Know?
Dermablend was founded by a physician, Dr. Craig Roberts, in 1981. He was displeased with skin care limitations that hindered his treatment of his patients. So, he partnered with his makeup artist wife to create dermatology standard products.

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Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has more than 620 reviews and is a top choice all around the world.

6. Best Sun Protection:e.l.f. Foundation

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4.3

Drugstore makeup bargains such as the e.l.f foundation are must-haves for your cosmetics bag. This foundation has a liquid-based formula that blends seamlessly into your skin to hide blemishes and redness for an even finish. With SPF-15, it gives you 24-hour protection from sun damage. The acne-fighting foundation is formulated with salicylic acid and witch hazel to keep your skin healthy, smooth, and gives a radiant finish. It also contains camphor, tea tree oil, and aloe vera gel for continuous hydration to the skin. The oil-free formula helps to correct uneven skin tone and add instant brightness. This foundation for acne-prone skin is available in a range of six shades to suit different skin tones. Not to mention, it is vegan and free from animal testing as well. It is a favorite of many makeup artists around the world.

Skin Type: NormalColor: Porcelain | Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 1.7 x 4.75 inches | Weight: 1.45 Ounces

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Sun protection
  • Available in different shades
  • Natural-looking finish
  • Cruelty-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Phthalate-free
  • Affordable option

Cons

  • None

7. Best Long-Lasting:Frankie Rose Cosmetics Foundation

This foundation from Frankie Rose Cosmetics is designed to give you flawless-looking skin. The sweat-proof formula gives you 24-hour wear without fading. It also controls sebum and prevents your skin from breaking out. The medium to full coverage formula is buildable and offers a smooth finish. This flawless satin foundation for all skin types covers all skin imperfections and gives a velvety finish. It is also not tested on animals, ensuring a guilt-free experience.

Skin Type: AllColor: China Silk | Product Dimensions: 1.42 x 1.42 x 4.29 inches | Weight: 3.84 Ounces

Pros

  • For all skin types
  • Long-lasting
  • Hydrating
  • Available in 8 shades

Cons

  • Thick consistency

8. Best Breathable:Covergirl Outlast Extreme Wear 3-In-1 Foundation

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4.2

If you need a foundation for a photo-ready look, try the expertly crafted Covergirl Outlast Extreme Foundation. It has a 3-in-1 formula that imparts full coverage, blends seamlessly, and covers all skin imperfections.The highly pigmented formula is buildable and provides medium to full coverage. This foundation also reduces your pore size to give your skin a smooth finish and is a favorite of many makeup artists. Many reviews indicate that the natural formula feels light on your skin and gives it a shine-free look. This foundation is breathable and contains SPF-18 to protect your skin from free radical damage.

Skin Type: AllColor: Buff Beige | Product Dimensions: 1.15 x 1.47 x 4.45 inches | Weight: 5.92 Ounces.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Available in 21 shades
  • Non-cakey
  • Transfer-proof
  • Long-lasting
  • Cruelty-free

Cons

  • May not suit dry skin

9. Best Waterproof:DC Dermacol Make-Up Cover

If you need a foundation for sensitive skin, check out the statement-making DC Dermacol Make-Up Cover Foundation. The waterproof formula of this high-end foundation contains SPF-15 to protect your skin from sun damage. The foundation helps in concealing all the imperfections of your skin along with unclogging enlarged pores. The pigmented formula controls sebum to give your skin an even tone and is also a favorite of many makeup artists.

Skin Type: SensitiveColor: 226 | Product Dimensions: 4.92 x 1.18 x 0.98 inches | Weight: 1.06 Ounces

Pros

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Preservative-free
  • For all skin types
  • Waterproof
  • Sun protection

Cons

  • Not long-lasting
*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

Things To Consider Before Buying A Full Coverage Drugstore Foundation

Remember these tips before buying a full coverage drugstore foundation.

  1. Skin Type:  Choose the formula that works best for your skin. If you have dry skin, then choose a liquid-based foundation with a creamy texture. Go for labels such as “non-comedogenic,” oil-control,” or “water-based” if you need a foundation for oily skin type. A foundation for combination skin should be oil-free yet hydrating. Opt for a liquid, lightweight foundation in such a case. If you need a foundation for mature skin, serum-based options will work the best.
  1. Skin Tone: Do not just pick any shade without considering the tone of your skin. With a variety of shades available, choose the shade that is closest to or matches your skin tone.
  1. Pigmentation: Choose a formula that is pigmented. Better the pigmentation, the better your imperfections will be covered. You can choose between matte, semi-matte, or dewy finish foundation, depending on your personal style.
  1. Budget: While choosing a foundation, always choose good drugstore foundation brands. A branded product may be a little expensive, but it will give promising results on your skin.

Infographic: Tips For Applying Full-Coverage Drugstore Foundations

Achieving flawless full coverage with drugstore foundations doesn’t have to be a challenge. These tips and tricks will help you master the art of application for a perfect finish without breaking the bank. From prepping your skin to blending techniques, here are a few pointers to elevate your makeup game. Check out the infographic below to learn more.

Tips For Applying Full-Coverage Drugstore Foundations (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

The Bottom Line

Foundation acts as a base for your makeup and hence, plays a very important role. It covers imperfections making your makeup look flawless. However, if the foundation does not provide full coverage, your makeup turns out to be cakey. The Revlon ColorStay Liquid Foundation offers a long-lasting matte finish and sun-damage protection for all-day wear, meanwhile, the Dermablend Professional Cover Creme, is non-comedogenic, dermatologist-tested, and transfer-resistant for radiant skin. The foundation listed in our article helps to get an excellent finish, hides the scars and blemishes, and evens out the skin tone. In addition, some foundations offer an all-day stay, while some come with SPF value offering protection from sun damage, and some provide instant brightness. All of these on a budget! So invest in the full-coverage foundation as per your requirement and steer clear of the ones that are not long-lasting.

Frequently Asked Questions

When should you use a full-coverage foundation?

Use a full-coverage foundation to make your skin even-toned and hide scars, pimples, and dark spots.

Do I need concealer when I use a full-coverage foundation?

No, but you can add a concealer if you still require more coverage after applying the foundation.

What is a good full-coverage foundation for pale skin?

The Maybelline New York Super Stay Active Wear foundation in fair ivory is a good full-coverage foundation for pale skin. It is highly buildable, does not feel heavy, and conceals your skin imperfections, offering a blemish-free look.

Should your full-coverage foundation be darker or lighter?

A full-coverage foundation should be lighter as you use a dark shade contour or bronzers that even the skin tone.

How often should I use full-coverage liquid foundation?

Liquid foundation can be used for daily coverage only once, as multiple applications can clog pores and cause breakouts.

Is it better to use a brush or a sponge when applying full coverage foundation?

Sponge is better than a brush as it helps provide a flawless finish.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

We have compiled this list of the best drugstore full-coverage foundations after conducting extensive research and reviewing the products available on the market. Foundations come in different consistencies and provide different levels of coverage. Since it is easy to get confused, we thoroughly checked user reviews and feedback to pick only the best product for you. We shortlisted the products considering their formula, staying power, coverage, and buildability.


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Cha Cha Woska

Cha Cha WoskaCertified Makeup Artist

Cha Cha is a certified professional makeup artist, airbrush makeup artist, and beauty educator with over 20 years in the beauty industry. She is also the owner of Cha Cha Beauty Bar and has done extensive work in the bridal and special event categories. She has a passion for beauty education and loves teaching her clients quick and easy ways...read full bio

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