Not Fair

The 15 best foundations for olive and dark skin tones

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The best foundations for olive and dark skin tones

Finding foundations with colour spectrums that cater for darker skin tones used to be a tricky business back when I was a teenager - I’d be lucky to find a single brown shade (let alone the right shade) among the rows upon rows of ivories, beiges and porcelains. However now, brands are stepping up to make the shopping experience a much more pleasurable encounter, with inclusivity becoming more the norm than the exception.

Here are my top foundation picks.

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Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation, £27 for 32ml

Shades: 40 - YES RIHANNA!

Coverage: Full

With options available for a range of different skin tones and undertones, this foundation's oil-free formula leaves the type of soft matte finish that works a treat for combination and oily skin types. It’s a standout product in the Fenty Beauty  collection.

Buy online

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Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Nude, £33.50 for 40ml

Shades: 40

Coverage: Light

Proving a base can be both lightweight and long-lasting, this foundation is the perfect match for those who hate wearing foundation. Offering natural-looking second skin coverage, it feels like you've got nothing on.

Buy online

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Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF15, £34.50 for 30ml

Shades: 25

Coverage: Light to medium

Hydrating and long-lasting, this award-winning foundation covers a range of bases. Suiting combination to oily skin types, its finish is neither too matte nor too shiny. The perfect balance.

Buy online

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Morphe Fluidity Full-Coverage Foundation, £16 for 30ml

Shades: 60!

Coverage: Full

The powder finish of this base makes it ideal for combination to oily skin types seeking all-day coverage. Plus, it doesn't feel heavy like many other full coverage foundations out there do as an added bonus.

Buy online

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MAC Studio Fix Fluid SPF15, £27 for 30ml

Shades: 64 - HIGH FIVE MAC!

Coverage: Full

If you're looking to shine-proof skin should you be in for the long haul (read: weddings or festivals), this durable foundation makes for a great option. There's something for every skin tone.

Buy online

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Milk Makeup Blur Liquid Matte Foundation, £34 for 30ml

Shades: 24

Coverage: Medium to full

For some reason, I always get compliments whenever I have this on. As a result, it's become my current go-to! It mattifies without feeling cloying, with its serum-like texture a pleasure to apply.

Buy online

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Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation SPF15, £33.50 for 30ml

Shades: 45!

Coverage: Full

Offering great longevity, this base lasts as well in an air-conditioned office as it is does on a sweaty dancefloor.

Buy online

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Dior Forever Skin Glow, £37 for 30ml

Shades: 31

Coverage: Medium to full

Providing a shine-free glow, this radiance-boosting base serves up benefits in both the short and long-term thanks to rose hip and pansy extracts. My skin looks more even, but also more hydrated when I have it on.

Buy online

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EX1 Invisiwear Liquid Foundation, £6.25 for 30ml

Shades: 16

Coverage: Medium

The oil-free, creamy texture of this foundation melts into skin to give smooth, even coverage. Created specifically for olive and gold undertones, it provides a seamless finish.

Buy online

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Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, £42 for 30ml

Shades: 30

Coverage: Medium to full

There’s a good reason for why this glow-boosting base has earned itself a cult following. I turn to it every time I haven't slept all that well. It enhances rather than masks - a rare find.

Buy online

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The Ordinary Coverage Foundation, £5.90 for 30ml

Shades: 21

Coverage: Full

The launch of The Ordinary’s foundations  caused a serious stir in the beauty industry thanks to its affordable price tag and shades ranging from very fair to very deep. Providing options for those with pink, red, neutral and yellow undertones, this richer, semi-matte option provides great coverage for your cash.

Buy online

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NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation, £35 for 30ml

Shades: 20

Coverage: Full

If you want radiant all-day coverage that leaves skin dewy and more even-toned, this oil-free foundation could be just what you've been looking for. It's perfect if your skin's looking especially dull or tired due to the change in seasons.

Buy online

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Sleek Lifeproof Foundation, £8.99 for 30ml

Shades: 24

Coverage: Medium to full

This long-lasting, rich-textured foundation offers great staying power for the shine-prone. Its soft focus powders create a subtle blurring effect too.

Buy online

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Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup SPF10, £34 for 30ml

Shades: 61 - WOOP.

Coverage: Full

For times when you need a base that offers more staying power than your daily go-to, look no further than this full cover, semi-matte cover-up that’s available in a whopping 61 shades. Catering for a range of undertones too, it lasts from morning until evening.

Buy online

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Pür Cosmetics 4-in-1 Love Your Selfie™ Longwear Foundation & Concealer, £32 for 36ml

Shades: 100 - an absolute game-changer!

Coverage: Medium to full

This combined concealer and foundation gives flawless coverage, concealing, correcting and improving the appearance of skin. The vegan-friendly product blends into the skin for an airbrushed look thanks to the doe-foot applicator. It was commended in our Get The Gloss Awards in the Diversity Game-Changer category thanks to the immense shade range.

Buy it online