The Big Finish: Finding the Right Foundation for You
4th April 2019
By Darcy Rive
Sometimes your skin just needs a little pick-me-up and sometimes you want that flawless complexion. Here, we look at the most popular finishes, from matte to dewy to natural, and round up the best foundations to help you achieve them.
Whatever beauty looks we like to wear, they all share one thing in common: flawless skin. While we all want to achieve that radiant, healthy-looking complexion, finding the right foundation and finding the right finish can sometimes be a little bit confusing. Here, we take a look at the most popular finishes, from perfecting matte to barely-there sheer, and round up some of our favourite foundations, including trusty favourites and new releases.
When choosing your foundation, you'll first need to decide what type of skin you have. While [dewy is great for dry skin](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/beauty/make-up/face/foundations?prefn1=beauty-makeup-foundationcoverage&prefv1=Medium%20Coverage) - giving it that gorgeous hydrated sheen - it can look wet and shiny on oily complexions. Oilier skin types, however, look fantastic in a matte finish, which in turn can highlight certain imperfections on mature skin. Take a moment to consider your skin type and how your foundation is going to sit on it when deciding what finish to go for.
Secondly, think about where you’re wearing it. If it’s just for everyday out-and-about, you might [find a lightweight sheer finish](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/beauty/make-up/face/foundations?prefn1=beauty-makeup-foundationcoverage&prefv1=Sheer%20Coverage) will work for you, but if you’re heading to an all day event (like a wedding), you’d probably opt for a matte finish, which photographs well and disguises most blemishes.
And finally, be realistic about how willing or able you are to top up. [A matte finish has longer wearability](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/beauty/make-up/face/foundations?prefn1=beauty-makeup-foundationcoverage&prefv1=Full%20Coverage) than a dewy finish, but it does mean that it’s heavier on the skin throughout the day. A natural finish is super light and more breathable, but you’ll need to reapply to keep that glow going.
Explore the different finishes below, and discover some of our favourite foundations to help you achieve them.
_Recommended for: Oily and Combination skin_
A matte finish is all about creating an even base and blemish-free complexion. There’s no shine at all, and while it doesn’t really give a glow, it does give a flawless skin tone. Plus, it photographs well, making it a great choice for special occasions. Full coverage foundations are often best for a matte finish. They cover any imperfections and reduce the appearance of pores, and as they dry down, they help reduce oiliness on the skin. Full coverage foundations have a tendency to cling to flaky skin or gather in wrinkles, meaning they’re not the best choice for dry or mature skin types.
**New in-store:** [Bobbi Brown](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/search/?cgid=bobbiBrown) Skin Long-Wear Weightless Foundation 30ml, £32\. Available from [Fenwick of Bond Street](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=bondStreet), [Canterbury](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=canterbury), [Colchester](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=colchester), [Kingston](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=kingston), [Newcastle](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=newcastle) and [Tunbridge Wells](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=tunbridgeWells)
**Shop online:** [La Mer Soft Fluid Foundation Long Wear](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/beauty/make-up/face/foundations/the-soft-fluid-foundation-long-wear-spf20/2500004028010.html) 30ml, £90
_Recommended for: Dry or Mature skin_
When you hear the word ‘dewy’, you might think of a wet spring morning, but when it comes to foundations, it means a soft, lustrous and youthful complexion. This finish makes it look like you’ve just had the most amazing facial and like your skin is happy, healthy and hydrated. It’s especially good on dry or mature skin as light-reflecting particles restore that coveted glow. You’ll usually find a dewy finish in medium coverage foundations, which create a perfecting veil but don’t sit too heavily on the skin. A dewy finish on oily or combination skin, however, can just look shiny and highlight the imperfections you'd rather blur.
**New in-store:** [Guerlain](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/brands/guerlain) L’Essential Natural Glow Foundation 30ml, £44\. Available from Fenwick [Canterbury](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=canterbury), [Colchester](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=colchester), [Kingston](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=kingston), [Newcastle](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=newcastle) and [York](https://www.fenwick.co.uk/store/?StoreID=york)
_Recommended for: All Skin Types_
When we talk about a natural finish, we’re talking about a gentle pick-me-up for your complexion. It’s that barely-there make-up that gives your skin a little touch of colour and a gentle glow. You’ll find a natural finish in sheer coverage foundations, tinted moisturisers and BB creams. Because they’re ultralightweight, a natural finish and sheer coverage is great for everyday wear as well as warmer seasons and holidays.