For most people, concealing acne can be a bit of a catch 22. The same cover-up you’re using to hide break-outs and pimples could very well be filled with oils and pore-clogging chemicals that’ll cause more of the same down the road. Naturally, it can seem like makeup that heals acne is an oxymoron. (Spoiler: It's not).
But personally, my skin problems are choreographed right down to the second with my menstrual cycle. Chin-and-nose area breakouts are just the cherry on top of flaring hormones and the inability to button my jeans. If I’m not careful with my makeup routine (especially when my skin is extra sensitive during my period), the acne extends past that one week and well into the rest of the month. The last thing anyone needs is that lingering post-cramps reminder right in the middle of your face.
Fortunately, however, not all foundations, cover-ups, and concealers are created equal. While some are filled with ingredients that exacerbate the issue, others are made with minerals, antioxidants, natural oils, and organic ingredients that heal while they conceal. Some rules of thumb? Figure out exactly what your skin needs (depending on your general level of dryness or excess oils), find foundations and cover-ups that promote healing and rejuvenation, and when in doubt, go natural. I’ve compiled a list of some of the best concealers and foundations that heal and protect skin without compromising on great coverage.
1. Dry Out Those Excess Oils
End-Zit Control Drying Lotion, $19, Amazon
This hypo-allergenic and non-irritating formula, called End-Zit, conceals, dries, and heals all at the same time. It’s medicated and dermatologist tested to dry out pimples as soon as they begin while simultaneously providing natural coverage. Some users even say that this lotion is so successful, they’ve given up on their full-face makeup and use nothing but this for spot treatment.
2. Purify & Clean Skin With Jojoba Oil While Concealing
Ecco Bella FlowerColor Cover Up, $15, Amazon
For those prone to oily skin, this non-greasy cover up is made with all-natural ingredients like chamomile oil, beeswax, jojoba oil, and flower wax to purify and clean skin while also soothing irritation. It covers well, blends beautifully, stays all day, and heals breakouts so they disappear much faster. Even reviewers with very irritable, sensitive skin say they’ve had no issues at all while using this.
3. Go Organic With Acai Palm Foundation
Organic Wear Natural Origin Cream, $11, Amazon
This 100 percent natural and organic foundation is a win/win because it provides correction and coverage at the same time. It has no gluten or parabens, is hypoallergenic, dermatologist tested, and fragrance-free, and it's filled with healing ingredients like lemon, beeswax, organic acai palm, and orange water. Best of all, it goes on smooth and creamy for a lightweight coverage that eases redness and blotches all day.
4. Get Coverage From The Multivitamin-Infused Concealer Stick
SHANY Crème Concealer Stick, $10, Amazon
This creamy concealer stick blends easily for effortless coverage anywhere (including even the most stubborn acne), but it also heals and hydrates with natural ingredients like beeswax, shea butter, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C. Because it’s made without talc or parabens, it’s perfect for all skin, and reviewers say it blends seamlessly over current acne and acne scars alike.
5. Rejuvenate Skin With Matte Minerals
BareMinerals Matte Foundation, $28, Amazon
Years after it first came out, BareMinerals is still one of the best powder foundations on the market because it offers shine-free coverage, while providing your skin with the minerals it needs to help renew and rejuvenate. While this makeup offers full coverage, it won’t sink into fine lines and wrinkles, and it won’t exacerbate any acne or breakouts.
6. For Breakout-Free Liquid Coverage, Enrich Skin With Super Fruits
Fruit Pigmented Healthy Skin Foundation, $42, Amazon
This full-coverage foundation is enriched with super fruits, antioxidants, and vitamins to nourish and protect skin. It’s pigmented from fruits and vegetables instead of synthetic dyes, so even those with sensitive skin can use it on a daily basis. It covers lines and imperfections while still providing a natural, matte finish that won’t look cakey or overly made up, and reviewers say it goes on smoothly and beautifully — even for those with minimal experience applying makeup.
7. Get Brushes That Stand Up To Washing
Professional Studio Quality Brush Set, $14, Amazon
Bacteria-covered brushes can be a huge cause of regular breakouts, especially if you don’t clean your tools often enough. However, cheaper poor-quality brushes won’t be able to withstand daily use and weekly washes without deteriorating, which irritates pores even further. These Professional Studio Quality Brushes are made from quality natural hair for lasting performance, and won’t irritate skin, even after countless washes. They’re soft and durable, provide beautiful coverage, are regularly used by professional makeup artists, and come in a classy case for easy storage and travel.
8. Control Sebum With Mineral Powder
Innusfree No Sebum Mineral Powder, $6, Amazon
This mineral foundation is specially formulated to control sebum production, which is the oily secretion of the sebaceous gland that often leads to breakouts. It’s made with natural minerals and mint extracts, but it completely skips the parabens, talc, and artificial pigments and fragrances, so you know you’re applying the healthy stuff. It’s a translucent powder, so it’s ideal for those with minimal redness and acne spots, but it’s long-lasting and stays fresh all day long, despite sweat and oil.
9. Color Correct With Healing Botanicals
Physicians Formula All-In-One Balm Concealer, $10, Amazon
If the cover-up on your acne is cakey and dry, you might as well not have covered it at all. This Balm Concealer is wonderful because it won’t settle into imperfections on the skin, but it will cover, hydrate, heal, and correct with antioxidants and firming botanicals. The color is consistent, easy to apply, and natural-looking with a soft finish, and even the most easily irritated skin remains clear and blotch-free.
10. Heal & Even Color With Salmon Egg Extract
Skin Food Concealer, $9, Amazon
In the holistic health field, experts always tell you that what’s healthy for your stomach is probably healthy for your skin, and this Skin Food Salmon Corrector Cream is no exception. It’s great for people who suffer from discoloration and particularly blotchy skin, because it’s got a yellowish tint to counteract redness. It goes on smooth for easy application, and because it contains salmon egg extract and salmon oil (I know, but don’t knock it ‘til you try it) it’s filled with vitamins and antioxidants that heal and rejuvenate your face.
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Images: Fotolia (1); Amazon (10)