Skip to main content
Beauty

Keep your makeup looking flawless despite dry skin

Skip flakiness with these moisturizing products.

On left, e.l.f blush and swatches. On right, person applying concealer under eyes. Credit: E.L.F Cosmetics / Kosas

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

You may feel like your dry skin is a blessing in the warmer months when others contend with slickness, shine, and even breakouts from an overproduction of oil. But as soon as the weather gets colder and drier, you may be singing a different tune. Not only can a lack of natural moisture lead to tight, itchy or scaly skin, it can wreak havoc on how your makeup looks and wears throughout the day. If powdery, flaky makeup stresses you out, allow these moisturizing products to transform your getting-ready routine and leave your finished face looking flawless.

1. For a pre-makeup serum: Glow Recipe Plum Plump Hyaluronic Acid Serum

On left, face serum surrounded by plums. On right, plum covered in clear serum.
Credit: Glow Recipe

Hydrate your skin pre-makeup with the Glow Recipe Plum Plump Hylaronic Acid Serum.

Setting yourself up for a great makeup day means hydrating your skin well. If you have dehydrated skin, this serum from Glow Recipe can quench it. It contains hyaluronic acid and antioxidants from plums to hydrate and plump the skin as well as collagen and silk proteins to protect the skin barrier. The brand recommends patting one to two pumps into your face and neck prior to moisturizer and makeup for glowing skin.

Get the Glow Recipe Plum Plump Hyaluronic Acid Serum from Sephora for $60

2. For a hydrating primer: Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base Priming Moisturizer

On left, jar of face cream surrounded by vitamins. On right, person wiping cream into face under eye.
Credit: Bobbi Brown

Prep your skin for makeup with the Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base Priming Moisturizer.

A great makeup primer prepares your skin—whether that means moisturizing it or absorbing its oil—while holding makeup for a long-lasting look. The Bobbi Brown Face Base acts as a moisturizer with hyaluronic acid, squalane, shea butter, and vitamins B, C, and E. At the same time, the cream’s texture “grips” foundation and creates a smooth base for your complexion products. Blend the moisturizer into your skin and allow it to absorb before applying foundation.

Get the Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base Priming Moisturizer from QVC for $62

3. For a moisturizing foundation: Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation

On left, metallic tubes of moisturizer. On right, person holding tube of moisturizer.
Credit: Charlotte Tilbury

Give your skin a full-coverage, smooth finish with the Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation.

Even with a great base, your foundation may not be serving you if it clings to dry patches or uneven texture. The Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation offers medium coverage in a lightweight, easy-to-blend formula. The foundation contains hyaluronic acid to hydrate, rose flower extract and oil to brighten the skin, and proprietary ingredient Bix-Activ (a plant extract) to reduce shine and blur pores. As Reviewed’s beauty editor, I tested the foundation on my dry skin and can attest to the product’s claim of a flawless finish. The foundation comes in 30 neutral, cool, and warm shades from very light to deep.

Get the Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Foundation from Sephora for $44 

4. For a creamy concealer: Kosas Revealer Concealer

On left, multiple tubes of concealer. On right, person using wand applicator to apply concealer.
Credit: Kosas

Brighten and conceal with the Kosas Revealer Concealer.

Both the under-eye area and blemishes can be tricky to obscure with makeup, as a concealer may appear dry or not properly cover dark circles or redness. The Kosas Revealer Concealer tackles both of those issues. Its creamy, medium-coverage formula contains caffeine and pink algae extract that claim to correct dark circles and puffiness, hyaluronic acid and peptides to plump the skin, and arnica and panthenol to relieve redness. Whether it’s darkness under the eyes or an acne flare-up, this concealer promises to cover and correct without caking up. It comes in 28 shades ranging from very light to deep with a slew of undertones to match your skin tone.

Get the Kosas Revealer Concealer from Sephora for $28

5. For a velvety bronzer: Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzer

On left, jar of dark bronzer. On right, arms holding jars of concealer with color swatches on arm.
Credit: Anastasia Beverly Hills

Bronze and contour your face with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzer.

For as long as your skin is extra-dry, it’s a sign to put aside the powder bronzer in favor of a cream formula. The Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzer has the matte finish many powders offer but in a silky formula that won’t leave your skin feeling or looking dry. It comes in seven shades from tan to very deep with warm and neutral undertones to contour and bronze your complexion. Apply the bronzer in the hollows of your cheek, along the perimeter of your face, and anywhere else the sun would naturally add color.

Get the Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzer from Sephora for $35

6. For a lightweight blush: E.L.F. Cosmetics Putty Blush

Different shades of blush under jar of E.L.F blush. On right, different jars of  E.L.F products
Credit: E.L.F Cosmetics

Bring out the flush in your cheeks with the E.L.F Cosmetics Putty Blush.

Switching to cream products allows you to avoid the cakey finish that some powder products produce. Along with bronzer, grab a cream for the flush on your cheeks, like the E.L.F. Cosmetics Putty Blush. With argan oil and vitamin E in its formula, the blush claims to melt into the skin and leave a semi-matte finish to the cheeks. It’s available in eight colors, from a bright coral to a baby pink to a warm red. 

Get the E.L.F. Cosmetics Putty Blush from Ulta for $6

7. For a glowy highlighter: Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter

Person wearing hijab head covering hold bottle of foundation. On right, multiple bottles of foundation.
Credit: Charlotte Tilbury

Add glow to your complexion with the Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter.

Adding a gleam to the tops of your cheekbones makes your makeup appear livelier. The Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter is a standout product because of its dual purpose as a liquid highlighter and sheer-coverage skin tint. For the first option, use the doe-foot applicator to add a dot to the high points of your face, like the cheekbones, and blend it into the skin using your fingers. On days when your complexion could use an extra pick-me-up, apply it all over the face and layer your foundation on top. The result will be a dewy-looking, healthy finish on the skin. It comes in 12 shades—unlike the small handful you’ll usually find in a highlighter—so you should find one that suits your tone.

Get the Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter from Sephora for $44

8. For a silky loose powder: Rare Beauty Always an Optimist Soft Radiance Setting Powder

On left, cream jar of setting powder. On right, Selena Gomez smiling with mouth open.
Credit: Rare Beauty

Tamp down shine with the Rare Beauty Always an Optimist Soft Radiance Setting Powder.

Committed to setting down your makeup with powder? You don’t have to kick the habit—just sparingly use one that won’t emphasize dryness. The one from Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez claims to smooth your makeup to eliminate creasing or smudging while leaving a “soft radiance” to the skin. Dip into the container with a powder makeup brush, tap off the excess formula, and pat any areas you’re prone to shininess or creasing. Though sheer in coverage, the powder comes in five shades from light to deep, for a completely invisible match.

Get the Rare Beauty Always an Optimist Soft Radiance Setting Powder from Sephora for $22

9. For a dewy setting spray: Caudalie Beauty Elixir Face Mist

On left, green bottle of face mist surrounded by green grapes. On right, two bottles of face mist surrounded by grapes, brushes and blush.
Credit: Caudalie

Set your makeup using the Caudalie Beauty Elixir Face Mist.

If you’ve ever looked in the mirror and realized that your makeup looks dry and too “settled” in, reach for a makeup setting and refreshing spray. After you finish applying your face products—or any time you want a boost—spritz the Caudalie Beauty Elixir Face Mist over your skin. The mist contains mint essential oil and rose extract to tone the skin, benzoin and myrrh (both derived from trees) to smooth makeup, and orange water flower to hydrate. 

Get the Caudalie Beauty Elixir Face Mist from Sephora for $49

10. For a tool to smooth it all: BeautyBlender Makeup Sponge

On left, pink beauty blender in package. On right, pink beauty blenders on top of light board sign.
Credit: BeautyBlender

Blend in your makeup with ease using the Original BeautyBlender Makeup Sponge.

Though you may not consider your tools to be part of a moisturizing makeup routine, any of the items above can be helped along by applying (or blotting) them with a damp sponge. Made of non-latex foam, the BeautyBlender absorbs excess product and blends liquids and creams into the skin for a more even finish. You can even dip the sponge into powder-based products, dab onto the back of your hand to release excess formula, and tap the makeup under your eyes or directly on spots that you want a shine-free finish. Every step on this list will be made easier with this egg-shaped tool.

Get the Original BeautyBlender Makeup Sponge for Sephora for $20

Related content

The product experts at Reviewed have all your shopping needs covered. Follow Reviewed on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok or Flipboard for the latest deals, product reviews, and more.

Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

Up next