These 13 Affordable Foundations Are Just as Good as Their Expensive Counterparts

We believe in being 100% transparent here at Who What Wear, and we'd be lying if we said we don't have exceedingly high expectations when it comes to to finding a high-performing foundation formula. As makeup artists can attest, foundation is one makeup category worth splurging on because you often get what you pay for regarding finish, naturalness, and longevity in the best foundations. Since we greet the world with the skin on our face, we always want our complexion to live up to its full potential, and, simply put, we have zilch time for unflattering shades or difficult application.

Best affordable foundations

(Image credit: @HUNGVANNGO)

That said, there is a select—let us emphasise—a very select group of affordable foundations both celebrity makeup artists and product-jaded beauty editors stand by—formulas so good we actually apply them on the regular and keep stocked next to our bottles that are three, sometimes five, times the price. Curious to know which affordable high-street foundations actually stand up to our super-high standards? Keep scrolling. Ahead, we're naming 13 of the best affordable formulas you should most definitely snap up next.

The Best Affordable Foundations:

1. Revlon PhotoReady Candid Natural Finish Foundation

2. L'Oréal Pro-Matte Liquid Longwear Foundation

3. Maybelline Fit Me! Matte and Poreless Foundation

4. Nyx Cosmetics Can't Stop Won't Stop Foundation

5. L'Oréal True Match Foundation

6. Maybelline Dream Cushion Fresh Face Liquid Foundation

7. E.l.f. Cosmetics Flawless Finish Foundation

8. Physicians Formula The Healthy Foundation

9. Milani Conceal + Perfect 2-in-1 Foundation + Concealer

10. Bourjois Healthy Mix Anti-Fatigue Foundation 

11. Revlon ColorStay Makeup for Normal/Dry Skin

12. Rimmel Lasting Radiance Foundation SPF25 

13. Lottie London Velvet Skin Tint

Beauty Director

Erin has been writing a mix of beauty and wellness content for Who What Wear for over four years. Prior to that, she spent two and half years writing for Byrdie. She now calls Santa Monica home but grew up in Minnetonka, Minnesota, and studied writing, rhetoric, and communication at University of Wisconsin, La Crosse. She studied abroad in Galway, Ireland, and spent a summer in L.A. interning with the Byrdie and Who What Wear family. After graduating from UW, she spent one year in San Francisco, where she worked as a writer for Pottery Barn Kids and PBteen before moving down to L.A. to begin her career as a beauty editor. She considers her day-to-day beauty aesthetic very low-maintenance and relies on staples like clear brow serum (from Kimiko!), Lawless's Lip Plumping Mask in Cherry Vanilla, and an eyelash curler. For special occasions or days when she's taking more meetings or has an event, she'll wear anything and everything from Charlotte Tilbury (the foundations are game-changing), some shimmer on her lids (Stila and Róen do it best), and a few coats of the best mascara-type product on earth, Surratt's Noir Lash Tint.

With contributions from