Liquid Foundations are the new normal for beauty gurus and everyone else who wants their look to stay put on the go. Unfortunately, since the demand for liquid foundation is so high, there are so many choices that it can be hard to know which formula is right for you.
This high amount of options is a blessing and a curse – while it can be hard to know what formula is perfect for your skin, you can rest assured that there are plenty of options and there is at least one for you.
While it might seem like the only liquid foundations on the market cost far too much to wear every day, the good news is that drugstore brands have been offering more and more competitive options. Here’s a great list of 10 different liquid foundations that you can buy on a budget.
e.l.f cosmetics is known for being one of the most affordable makeup brands on the market. They offer a variety of products – enough so that you could do an entire face of makeup wearing only products made by this brand.
They have quite a few foundations on the market, and their foundations can be found in most drugstores such as Walmart, CVS, Target, and Walgreens.
There are quite a lot of pros right off the back with this liquid foundation. The first area in which it stands out is price. You get 1.21 fluid ounces of product. It’s hard to find a foundation that holds nearly as much product for such a low dollar amount.
Another great pro to this drugstore liquid foundation is that it has a great medium coverage that can be achieved with only a small layer of product. It’s a great option for those of you who need medium to full coverage, as it’s very build-able and covers uneven texture and redness of the skin with ease.
Finally, you can feel good about what you’re putting on your skin when you apply this liquid foundation every morning. This formula contains ingredients that fight and get rid of acne.
Salicylic Acid is an active ingredient often contained in cleansers and is known as one of the best ingredients on the market to fight acne breakouts.
On top of this, Witch Hazel and Tea Tree Oil are contained in this mixture to help fight your acne, while the Aloe helps to reduce and soothe the redness. This drugstore liquid foundation truly pulls together all the best ingredients and aspects of your beauty routine into one quick and simple step.
For a fraction of the cost of most liquid foundations, that’s a lot of bang for your buck.
Pros & Benefits:
- More product
- Medium coverage
- Fights acne
Maybelline is an old school drugstore makeup brand that we all remember from our middle school days. However, they’ve upped their quality and now their products are competitive with even high end makeup on the market.
They offer quite a few different types of foundations, most of which are very popular. You can find their products in any drugstore, such as Walmart, Target, or CVS, but their quality has also landed them some shelf space in high quality makeup stores like Ulta Beauty.
Maybelline hit it out of the park when they introduced this liquid foundation that has practically gone viral. Beauty YouTubers are going crazy over its high quality formula and great results.
Just like the e.l.f. foundation, Maybelline’s Fit Me Foundation Matte and Poreless offers a whole lot of product for a very minimal cost. Although it doesn’t contain quite as much product, Maybelline offers one fluid ounce of product.
On top of this super affordable cost, this formula is perfect to keep your skin looking smooth and matte all day long. Matte is a another craze that hit us years ago and hasn’t left.
People want their skin to look oil free without looking too dry. A matte finish completes this purpose perfectly. It’s a great lightweight formula that won’t make your face makeup seem cakey but will reduce your shine and keep your skin oil free all day.
Another awesome benefit to this drugstore liquid foundation is its dynamic shade range. Unfortunately many liquid foundations have failed to release large shade ranges in their makeup line.
Most of the brands that do have large foundation ranges are the more high end brands, like Fenty Beauty or Lancome. Maybelline fails to meet this limited range stereotype of drugstore brands by having a full, forty shades in their shade range. Almost anyone can find their perfect shade match on Maybelline’s shelves – not something many liquid foundations can claim to provide.
A final benefit of this drugstore liquid foundation is that it gives you a perfect ‘I woke up like this’ look. This is Maybelline’s super lightweight formula. If you want to rock a ‘my skin but better’ look instead of a full coverage beat, this is a great option for you.
If youu worry about your foundation looking cakey or cracking around your fine lines, this formula will reassure you and prove that you can have the best of both worlds after all.
Pros & Benefits:
- Keeps skin smooth and matte
- Doesn’t dry out skin
- Keeps skin oil free
- Wide shade range
- Lightweight natural look
NXY is another drugstore makeup brand that has become very competitive with the high end makeup world. Beauty gurus are beginning to realize that they don’t have to spend a lot of money every time they want to purchase a new foundation that does the job.
NYX’s Total Control Drop Foundation is still a pretty affordable liquid foundation. While this price may seem a little steep compared to e.l.f. or Maybelline, the main benefit to this foundation justifies the price.
You get 0.43 fluid ounces of product – about half the amount of the past two drugstore liquid foundations mentioned. However, this small beauty product packs a big punch.
NYX Total Control Drop Foundation is just what it sounds like – a bottle full of a completely liquid, liquid foundation. The product is dispersed by a dropper, and allows you to customize any foundation you already own.
That deep color that you bought in the middle of the Summer at the height of your tan? You don’t have to throw it out now. Simple pump a bit onto your hand and add a drop or two of NYX’s special formula. Mixing the two together helps you to customize your own shade and perfectly match your skin tone.
If your skin needs some extra moisture, grab a bit of your favorite face cream and add a few drops of this foundation. Mixing the two together will create a foundation with a tinted moisturizer / BB Cream feel that will go on easily and keep you both hydrated and covered all day long.
The NYX Total Control Drop Foundation can be used on its own as well as mixed with other products. Even one small drop of this foundation can cover your entire face in a perfect, lightweight sheen.
It’s easily build-able without making the face look cakey, and you can customize the number of drops you use by the level of coverage you need. When you have a good skin care, use one drop. When you’re having a breakout or going to a special event, try three or four drops to create a full coverage foundation.
This drugstore liquid foundation is also a matte finish liquid foundation. Use it to hide your oily skin and stop the level of shine your face gives off. Mix it with your favorite dewy finish foundation to create a demi-matte finish if you skin is more oily than it usually is.
The amount of this product that you will need to use every time you do your makeup is so small that it justifies the higher price. Even with it holding less product than most liquid foundations, the little amount needed helps one bottle to last you longer than most other brands can offer.
Pros & Benefits
- Allows you to customize any foundation
- Allows you to make tinted moisturizers
- Matte Finish
- Lasts a long time
4. Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Radiant Firming Foundation – For Those Dealing With Aging Skin
Maybelline hits our drugstore foundation list once again with another highly raved about product. As mentioned before, this brand has evolved over the years, learning from experience and formulating such high quality foundations that it competes alongside high end liquid foundations.
It’s offered in almost any drugstore like Walmart or Walgreens, but can also be seen hitting the shelves of Ulta Beauty. Aging skin is something that we all have to deal with.
Getting older is a fact of life, and with age comes the fine lines we all dread. Maybelline realized this and released a foundation line specifically for those with aging skin who wanted to begin the journey of backtracking the aging process.
This is another great liquid foundation deal. It’s a slightly higher price than their Fit Me line and e.l.f.’s Acne Fighting Foundaiton, but less than half as expensive as NYX’s Total Control Drop Foundation. This liquid foundation has become yet another cult classic for Maybelline, with thousands of die hard fans and hundreds of raging reviews.
The main pro of this liquid foundation is that it conceals fine lines in a way most other foundations fail to achieve. It also evens out the skin tone and firms loose skin on the face. All three of these features majorly fight the look of aging and take years off your appearance. Infused with caffeine, your skin will look awake and alive and years upon years younger.
Another fabulous benefit you get when you purchase this drugstore liquid foundation is that it contains a SPF in its formula. Wearing a moisturizer, foundation, or straight sunscreen is something everyone should be doing every day no matter their age. SPF protects your skin from the harmful rays of the sun. This has many benefits, some of which are anti-aging.
Other than the obvious – protecting your skin against skin cancer – SPF in your foundation helps keep away the harsh rays of the sun that would age your skin.
Adding an SPF to your routine will ensure that your skin stays firm and soft, completely protected from the sun. Maybelline incorporated this vital ingredient so that this foundation has almost every anti-aging effect out there. Plus, purchasing this foundation knocks out two steps of your beauty routine at once.
This liquid foundation is usually described as medium coverage. It might be a little bit heavy for you if you like more of a lightweight formula, but for those of you who love full coverage it’s a great option.
Adding a second layer or paying a little bit of extra attention to problem areas allows it to build up to a full coverage if you need it to.
Pros & Benefits:
- Conceals fine lines
- Evens out skin tone
- Firms skin
- Wakes up the face
- Contains SPF
- Medium coverage
Covergirl is another old school brand that a lot of us might remember from our younger years. They used to be seen as the brand we were used to our mothers wearing, but recently they have really upped their game. Covergirl has shown itself to be a big contender with other makeup brands, even challenging high end makeup in some of their products.
While their formulas keep improving, their prices stay the same, showing that beauty doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. Covergirl’s products can be found in any drugstore such as Walgreens or CVS, but has also moved up the ranks to high end beauty stores such as Ulta Beauty.
The first pro to this drugstore liquid foundation is that it’s very affordable. This is a good medium price compared to the other liquid foundations we have reviewed up until this point. However, I’d say that paying a few extra dollars for this formula is completely worth it considering how beneficial it can be for your skin.
One of the obvious benefits of this Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation is that it’s very easy on sensitive skin. If your skin tends to break out very easily, this is probably a great choice for you.
Some foundations tend to hurt the skin more than they help it – but this one will make sure not to lead you wrong. You can feel comfortable putting Covergirl’s drugstore liquid foundation on your skin, knowing it won’t cause you to break out or develop unsightly red patches.
Another great pro to this liquid foundation is that it contains an oil free formula. While it doesn’t boast a matte finish, it does promise to reduce the look of shine.
If you have oily skin but prefer to not rock the matte look, this might be a great option for you. Plus, the fact that this formula is oil free guarantees that whoever wears it can be sure that they aren’t adding unnecessary oil to their skin throughout the day.
Just like the last drugstore liquid foundation, Covergirl is up to date with the importance of wearing an SPF every day. This formula contains SPF 20, so you can know that you’re protecting your skin while you’re out and about.
This is simple another way in which this foundation helps those with sensitive skin. Not only does including an SPF in a liquid foundation make your beauty routine easier, but it gives your various benefits such as anti aging properties and a defense against the harmful rays that cause skin cancer.
A great pro that this liquid foundation has is that it contains a blend of vitamins that will make your skin look healthy and feel healthy all day. Sometimes wearing a lot of makeup can be harsh on your skin and the natural oils and vitamins that belong on it.
This liquid foundation contains vitamins E, B3, and B5, all of which will keep your skin looking and feeling healthy. These vitamins help your natural skin to firm up, ease fine lines, and minimize dark spots.
Being able to use this foundation every day is almost like applying a serum or oil to your skin before your foundation, yet again minimizing the length of your beauty routine every morning.
Finally, this liquid foundation is a true full coverage foundation. It applies silky smooth without looking like an obvious layer over your skin. If you have sensitive skin and need a foundation that can easily apply full coverage, this is a great option for you.
Pros & Benefits:
- Easy on sensitive skin
- Doesn’t cause break outs
- Oil free
- Contains SPF
- Contains great nutrients for skin
- Full Coverage
Maybelline hits the charts again with yet another line of liquid foundation. Over the years, Maybelline has truly shown what it means to be an adaptive company. They realize that we are made with all different types of skin and that one line of foundation won’t work for everyone.
Because of this they have many formulas – all of which have become loved classics in the makeup community. Whether you have oily skin, dry skin, normal skin, or aging skin, they have a perfect formula for you.
When Maybelline realized that their new target audience had become the much loved makeup gurus and YouTubers that we follow today, they knew that many of the people purchasing their products needed something that was going to make them look flawless all day.
The new target was hard working women and men who didn’t have time to do touch ups all day long and reapply when necessary. They needed to formulate a foundation that lasted all day without settling in fine lines, wearing away, or losing its coverage.
If you’re busy all day and don’t have the time or energy to continually touch up your makeup, this is for you. Maybelline’s Super Stay 24 Hour liquid foundation will keep your look in tact all day long.
This helps you stay worry free, knowing you can depend on your makeup to stay in place and do its job no matter how long your shift is. Don’t feel like you need to spend time on touch ups when you go from work to drinks with friends – this liquid foundation will keep you looking great all day long.
Another pro, as is the usual with most of these drugstore liquid foundations, is that it’s very affordable no matter your budget. This is another mid range price drugstore product.
Like most of the other products, this price is even further justified when you think about its use. Unlike other liquid foundations, you won’t find yourself adding more to your skin throughout the day.
One layer, and you’re good to go until you’re ready to take it off at the end of the day. Because of this, you will wind up using less product than you would with other liquid foundations, thus causing one bottle to last much longer than usual. Talk about making the most of your money.
One final benefit to this product is that it’s oil free. This helps it to last all day without the need of touch ups. When your foundation isn’t oil free, it can cause your skin to shine throughout the day.
Having to make bathroom trips to blot the oil from your skin takes up time and adds another cost to your beauty item list. Luckily, this great liquid foundation will keep you looking great all day without the need to blot away the oil your skin produces.
Pros & Benefits:
- 24 hour wear
- Oil free
- Saves time
- Full coverage
Covergirl makes its appearance once more on the charts with a much loved product for people who struggle with dry skin. Often dry skin is something looked over by many brands, both drugstore and high end.
Most brands focus on providing products for people with either normal or oily skin. Unfortunately this can be a major problem for those who constantly have to struggle with either dry or combination skin.
Using a foundation meant for those with oily skin can make the dry patches of the face even dryer and more irritated. Luckily, Covergirl came out with Smoothers Hydrating liquid foundation to fix this problem that can be found anywhere from Walmart to Ulta Beauty.
Their price seems to be about the average price of these drugstore liquid foundations. Even though it may be pricier than the e.l.f. foundations or some of the other formulas by Covergirl, the benefits make the cost worth it.
It’s extremely affordable and will last you longer than some products that are meant to be build-able. This offers a nice lightweight formula for a light to medium coverage look that will smooth the texture of your skin without you having to add more and more product.
The featured benefit of this product is that it will keep your skin hydrated. This formula contains a long lasting source of hydration that will keep your skin irritation free and feeling full of hydration for up to 11 hours.
If you have dry skin, you can be sure that this will keep your skin looking flawless for a long period of time while making sure your skin keeps the degree of hydration that it needs to heal and thrive.
Unlike many hydrating formulas, this drugstore liquid foundation is oil free and won’t make your skin shiny or lose its hold on the foundation. Often liquid foundations use oils to make the skin feel hydrated, when really it can cause your skin to break out and need to be blotted all day long.
This formula will ensure that your dry patches don’t flare up, while simultaneously making sure that you don’t break out or have to blot your skin all day long.
One final benefit of this drugstore liquid foundation is that it makes sure that your skin will not be smothered throughout the day. This formula is very lightweight and will not fill up pores.
The only reason you will know you’re wearing it’s because of how good your skin will look and feel. Because this foundation is only light coverage, it will not clog up your pores at all, thus adding more confidence to the claims that it will not make your skin oily or irritate it even more.
This foundation does not emphasize texture and will not make your dry patches obvious. Even with only a thin layer of this product, your skin will look and feel smooth and even all day long.
Pros & Benefits:
- Good for dry skin
- Keeps skin hydrated for up to 11 hours
- Oil free
- Lightweight formula
Of course our list would not be complete with the cheapest option of them all – Rimmel. Rimmel is one of those drugstore brands that don’t automatically jump to mind when you think about going shopping for your makeup routine.
However, their products are not to be underestimated. While they don’t have any products that they are particularly known for, you can reach for any of their makeup items and know you’ll find a solid product for a fraction of the cost. Consistency is their key. You can find their items in most drugstores like Walmart or Target, and even a select few in Ulta Beauty.
The main allure of this liquid foundation is its price tag. This makes this Rimmel Stay Matte Foundation the most inexpensive drugstore liquid foundation on this comprehensive list.
For three dollars and pocket change, you can get a tried and true liquid foundation with nothing but good reviews. Feel free to layer it on. With this price tag, you don’t have to feel bad on the days when you really want to cover up.
Another pro to this item is that, as its name claims, it holds a matte finish. This means you won’t have to spend time blotting your skin in order to keep that oily shine down.
Based on its reviews, this is a true matte finish that isn’t going to budge and is really long lasting. You’re getting a long lasting foundation that you can wear all day without the need for incessant touch ups.
Finally, a great benefit to this foundation is that it’s lightweight. Most matte foundations are heavy and can clog your pores and make your fave feel stiff. Rimmel’s great liquid foundation formula applies soft and stays on soft and light so you won’t feel like you’re wearing a mask.
Even with it being nice and lightweight, it does have a great medium coverage. Plus, with a price tag so low, you can afford to apply a few layers on days when you want to look your best or hide your latest breakout.
Pros & Benefits:
- Most affordable liquid foundation
- Matte finish
- Lightweight formula
- Doesn’t clog pores
A list of affordable drugstore liquid foundations would be incomplete without including the tried and true brand L’Oreal. This is yet another classic brand that keeps improving and coming out with products everyone seems to love.
In general, most classic drugstore brands are coming out with much higher quality formulas than we are used to. Of course, we aren’t complaining. L’Oreal products can be purchased in any drugstore as well as in select Ulta Beauty stores.
L’Oreal’s True Match Super Blend-able liquid foundation is on the lower side of the price the range. It’s one of L’Oreal’s more inexpensive liquid foundation lines. For this low price, you receive 1 fluid ounce of product, which seems to be the norm for most of these drugstore liquid foundations.
L’Oreal’s True Match Super Blend-able comes through with a wide variety of benefits. The obvious benefit of this liquid foundation is that it will truly match your skin (as the title implies). For one, L’Oreal has one of the largest shade ranges of any liquid foundations.
With 38 shades, you’ll be able to easily detect your perfect skin color and undertones for the absolutely perfect match On top of this great shade range, this formula was specifically made to blend out like a dream so that no one can tell you’re rocking anything but your natural skin.
Another great benefit to this product is that it’s a super lightweight formula.
Even though it’s lightweight, it does offer medium coverage that can be easily built without making your face look cakey or feel heavy. Its lightweight nature makes sure your texture is nice and even, even further portraying a look of ‘your skin, but better.
This is also a great foundation for nourishing your skin. It contains a blend of vitamins A and C which protect your skin and keep it feeling and looking healthy. These vitamins penetrate your skin and replenish the needed nutrition that often get stripped away when using a face mask or cleanser.
This can even minimize your morning routine if you use serums or oils that contain these same vitamins. It’s a great two in one product to promote healthy, beautiful skin.
Finally, one last pro to this drugstore liquid foundation is that it contains SPF 17. As explained before, SPF is something that you should be wearing everyday and adding to your beauty routine.
Even if you aren’t outside much, it’s a vital step that should never be skipped. Don’t like grey skies trick you into casting your SPF aside – the harmful rays that age your face and cause skin cancer are not stopped by simply a cloudy day.
This formula pulls of yet another two for one by combining two vital steps of your beauty routine into one, saving you both time and money.
Pros & Benefits:
- Wide shade range
- Easily blendable
- Lightweight formula
- Nourishes skin
- Contains SPF
Wet ‘n Wild tops off our list of the best drugstore liquid foundations with a formula to keep you slaying all day, every day. Wet ‘n Wild has become a well known drugstore brand over the past few years that releases tons of new products.
They are well known for cult favorites such as their rainbow highlighter that completely broke the internet. You can find their products anywhere from drugstores such as CVS to beauty stores such as Ulta Beauty.
Wet ‘n Wild’s Photo Focus Foundation offers 1 fluid ounce of product. This makes it one of the lower costing foundations on this list. It’s a great value for a greatly loved and highly raved about product.
The main benefit that this foundation offers is its ability to make you look primed, perfected, and glamorous in every photo. It will not give you flashback or make your skin seem whiter than usual.
Often bright lights can make your foundation gather a white sheen, but this formula has been tested under numerous lightings to create a product that will look great every time. It contains an adjusting complex that adjusts to the light to make sure that your skin doesn’t come off as lighter or darker than usual in your next photo shoot.
No matter whether or not you’re hitting the streets for a fun night out and want to prepare for your own person paparazzi or if you’re staying in taking some high quality selfies for Instagram, this liquid foundation will come through with the perfect complexion every time.
One final benefit of this product is that it’s cruelty free. While some people don’t care whether or not the products that they purchase are cruelty free, Wet ‘n Wild is proud to not conduct animal testing.
If you try to be a conscious shopper who doesn’t wear anything that has harmed animals, Wet ‘n Wild’s liquid foundation is a great affordable choice that you can feel proud wearing.
Pros & Benefits:
- Makes your face camera ready
- No flashback
- Cruelty free
No matter what the color of your skin is and no matter the skin type, you can be sure that there is a liquid foundation out there for you. Make sure you check out these ten great options to find the best drugstore liquid foundation for you without breaking the bank.
We hope you enjoyed this best drugstore liquid foundation review. See one that’s not on here and should be? Let us know down below in the comments.