Give Your Skin a Boost of Moisturizing Coverage With These Hydrating Foundations

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If your skin is on the drier side or you prefer smooth-looking skin with a touch of glow, a hydrating foundation can be a blessing. These types of foundations tend to be lighter in coverage with a ton of moisturizing properties including hyaluronic acid, collagen, and a host of other skin-plumping goodness.

Below are some of our favorite hydrating foundations that vary in coverage from light to medium. While these formulas are all lightweight, their coverage is buildable to give you the coverage you desire.

Our options include a popular hydrating skin tint that will plump and moisturize for 24 hours, a fresh BB cream that doubles as an 8-in-1 skin perfector, and some creamy foundations for your smoothest, most glowing, most flawless skin ever.

Premier Hydrating Foundation in Detail

Neutrogena Hydrating Tint  —  Best Overall

This hydrating tint and liquid foundation in one is specially formulated for drier skin types to help boost hydration. This is a water-gel formula that features hyaluronic acid, known for its skin-plumping and hydrating properties, that will hydrate and refresh skin for 24 hours. As this is a tint, it is a weightless formula that provides light yet even coverage and can be applied with your hands, your favorite beauty sponge, or brush.


  • This tint is oil-free and non-comedogenic


  • If you prefer heavier coverage, another option might be better

Maybelline Liquid Foundation  —  Runner Up

This is another intensely hydrating formula similar to the one above with hyaluronic acid and collagen to moisturize skin for a radiant, natural makeup look. This formula however provides medium coverage that is buildable and delivers up to 12 hours of hydration. With its serum-like consistency, this foundation will also go on like a dream to even out skin tone, conceal imperfections, and give you an all-over glow.


  • This formula is available in 20 different shades


  • This product contains fragrance

Maybelline Hydrating BB Cream  —  Honorable Mention

This 8-in-1 skin-perfecting beauty balm contains skin-loving benefits including hydrating, brightening, sun protection, blurs imperfections, smoothes, enhances, is oil-free, and skin-perfecting in one simple step. This hydrating balm is also suitable for all skin types and great for daily wear as it provides healthy-looking skin that you see in an instant for a natural finish.


  • This formula is oil-free


  • There are minimal color options

LAURA GELLER NEW YORK Quench-N-Tint  —  Editor's Pick

This is another intensely hydrating foundation formula that provides weightless and refreshing coverage. This foundation has a slight wash of color, similar to a tinted moisturizer while providing even coverage that leaves a natural glow. The ideal application is with your fingertips for the most natural yet fuller coverage and you can apply a small amount, start at the center of the face and blend outward.


  • This comes in an easy squeeze tube


  • There are minimal color options

TOUCH IN SOL Liquid Foundation  —  Also Consider

This lightweight, hydrating foundation has a moisture-rich formula that will nourish and smooth out the skin for a truly flawless finish. It has an advanced moisture complex technology with a water-holding formula that keeps moisture on the skin surface for a long time. It also has long-lasting coverage with a dewy, not oily finish and applies perfectly after any moisturizer or primer.


  • This formula includes SPF 30


  • This foundation is ideal for drier skin types

Buying Guide: Hydrating Foundations

Foundation is one of the most important components of a good makeup routine. But what if your skin can’t handle certain foundation products? That’s where the top hydrating foundations in 2022 come in. This quick buyer’s guide should cover all the basics for you to get a good idea of what you need to know about hydrating foundations.

What Are Hydrating Foundations?

Hydrating foundations work like any other foundation - you apply them as a base and put on other makeup afterward. Where it differentiates itself from other types of makeup, however, is in its hydrating property, hence the name. Hydrating foundations will keep your skin nice and moisturized even while applying foundation, which can help those with naturally dry skin.

Why Do You Need a Hydrating Foundation?

They can help with naturally dry skin

Not everyone is born the same, and some people just don’t have naturally hydrated skin, and that’s okay. What isn’t okay, however, is having to deal with the problems associated with dry skin, especially when wanting to put on makeup. Dry skin is not only uncomfortable to work with, but it also can lead to uneven foundation application, and since foundation serves as the base for the rest of your makeup, it’ll end up with irreversible consequences.

With hydrating foundations, you will at least have one less thing to worry about. The foundation will also keep your skin nice and moisturized, preventing that skin from drying after using your makeup. For those with naturally dry skin, it’s very, very convenient, and unless you’re looking to put on a specific type of foundation for a certain occasion, a hydrating foundation can prove to be very beneficial for everyday use.

It’s actually a form of sunscreen

No, really, it is. Did you know that it’s actually recommended to put on at least a bit of sunscreen every day if you want to keep your skin in a healthy condition? The sun may not feel incredibly hot all the time, but it does affect your skin, and this is why regular use of sunscreen is recommended by many dermatologists, even if you’re not going to the beach. Unfortunately, not everybody does this, but if you’re putting on makeup, you’re at least getting some form of protection.

Foundation doesn’t just serve as a base for your face - it also helps keep the sun’s harmful rays away from your skin, acting as a layer of sorts. This results in an effect similar to sunscreen, and in fact, there are many foundation products with an SPF rating for this very reason. Now, hydrating sunscreen may not achieve the same sunscreen effect as other foundation products, but it’s better than nothing, and you’re basically getting a 2-for-1 deal by using foundation already.

Things to Consider When Buying a Hydrating Foundation


Foundation may be a makeup product, but it isn’t actually designed to stand out on its own. Rather, it’s meant to serve as support for the more prominent features that you’ll be applying later on in your makeup routine. Because of this, most foundation products are made in colors that match your natural skin tone. So, when picking the right tone or shade for your foundation, it’s a good idea to pick a foundation that blends really well with your natural skin color.

SPF rating

SPF rating refers to how effective the product is at protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. This rating is most commonly known to be found in sunscreens, but many foundation products have an SPF rating as they also achieve a similar effect. In general, you’ll want as high of an SPF rating as possible, though this shouldn’t hinder your options too much, and if you’re looking for better hydration or a more accurate tone or shade, then it’s fine to sacrifice a little bit of SPF strength in exchange.

It’s also worth considering the time of year and weather in which you’re planning to use the foundation. On sunny days in summer, be sure to use foundations with high SPF ratings, and on cloudy days, you can go for those with lower SPF ratings instead, as there isn’t much sun to protect your skin from in those scenarios.

Tips When Using Hydrating Foundation

Drink a lot of water

If you’re suffering from dry skin, a common reason behind it is simply because you lack hydration in your body. Many people drink less than the recommended amount of water per day, even if they don’t know it. If you think you’ve been drinking a glass or two less than you should be, consider setting up a schedule for when you should drink water. This may sound strange, but you’ll definitely find your skin to be much smoother once you’ve got a good amount of water in your system.

Use other hydrating and moisturizing products

While hydrating foundations can help a lot, they can only do so much. Using other moisturizing and hydrating products will help keep your skin in good condition, and even allow you to use other foundation products instead in the future.