6 Expert-Approved Makeup Tricks to Try If You Have Uneven, Textured Skin

When you have rough and bumpy skin, you know it can be a bit tricky to apply makeup products so everything can appear smooth. The last thing you want is to apply too much product, as it could appear cakey or make the uneven texture look even more noticeable. It's all about achieving the right balance so your skin looks smooth and natural. But that's easier said than done, right?

To help, I asked two makeup artists for their best tips for applying foundation to textured skin. See what they had to say below.

How to Apply Foundation to Textured Skin

1. Prep the skin: It's important to take care of your skin before you apply any makeup—in fact, it's crucial even if you're not dealing with textured skin. "At home cleansing and hydrating is key before you do your makeup," explains celebrity makeup artist Tobi Henney, whose clients include Megan Fox and Ashley Graham. "I am loving Darya Hope's Triple Cleanse Facial System to clean and exfoliate the skin. Next, I love to apply a mask, my go-to is Tatcha's Dewy Skin Mask. Next, it's time to moisturize the skin. My go-to is Augustinus Bader's The Cream.

2. Choose the right type of foundation: "It is best to stay away from powder formulas when choosing a foundation for textured skin—powder can settle into texture and actually make it appear worse," says celebrity makeup artist Tamah Krinsky, whose clients include Alexa Chung and Sophie Turner. "When applying, it really all comes down to what the texture you are dealing with is—if you have a tendency towards dry patches or crepey skin, you would balance that with a moisturizing, dewy foundation. Alternatively, if you are dealing with acne or rashy skin, you may want to go with a more matte formula to lessen the texture."

3. Add a Primer: Henney says after she finishes the skincare prep steps, she adds a primer. "I am loving Armani's Luminous Silk Hydrating Primer. This is such a beautiful combo to apply before adding your preferred foundation," she recommends.

4. Apply Lightly: Start with a small amount of foundation and slowly layer depending on how much coverage you need and where you need it—this way you'll avoid "caking" your makeup on.

5. Use a Sponge to Blend: "I love to use a damp BeautyBlender to apply foundation, starting from the center of the face and blending outwards," Henney says. "This will create the most natural, flawless base."

6. Take care of your skin on the regular: Outside of applying makeup, Krinsky says it's important to treat your skin daily. "How you prep your skin all depends on what you are dealing with in terms of texture. First and foremost, if you are dealing with overly dry or oily skin, recurring rashes, or recurring acne I would recommend you visit a dermatologist and not try to cover the skin with makeup," she says. "Your skin is an organ and it is important to listen to what it is showing and telling you. More than anything I recommend we all make a healthy habit of cleansing, exfoliating (I recommend weekly), moisturizing, and using SPF daily. Let this be your morning and evening ritual, and a few minutes you use to take good care of yourself! Regardless of what you are dealing with in terms of your skin, those are the most important steps to staying balanced."

Shop the Best Foundations for Textured Skin

And if you're looking for the perfect foundation formula for bumpy or rough skin, take a look at some highly-rated options here.

1. Tom Ford Traceless Soft Matte Foundation

Henney recommends this one from Tom Ford, as she says it will create a super-even base and hide any skin imperfections.

2. Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Liquid Foundation Makeup

Maybelline's Fit Me foundation provides medium coverage and is available in 40 shades. It works to refine pores for a smoother, natural-looking matte finish. 

3. Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Perfect Glow Flawless Oil-Free Foundation

"Armani's Luminous Silk also works wonders on textured skin, as you can build the coverage where needed on more problematics areas and it will give such a flawless finish," Henney says.

4. Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Medium Coverage Liquid Foundation with Hyaluronic Acid

If you're trying to conceal rough dry patches, this foundation might be a game-changer for you. It's infused with hyaluronic acid, rose complex, and Bix-Activ to hydrate, brighten, smooth, and blur pores. The product leaves a natural finish and can last up to 16 hours.

5. Shiseido Synchro Skin Radiant Lifting Foundation SPF 30

"Shiseido's Synchro Skin Self-Refreshing Foundation has been one of my fave foundations of late. It will give you a radiant finish and is the perfect pick for anyone with uneven skin tone as it covers breakouts and pigmentation really well," Henney says.

6. Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Hydrating Longwear Foundation

This long-wearing foundation delivers medium to full coverage and has a natural finish. It's formulated with grape-seed oil and sodium hyaluronate to instantly hydrate the skin.

7. Covergirl + Olay Simply Ageless 3-in-1 Liquid Foundation

This is a great option for mature skin types. It's designed to reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles. Plus, it firms and nourishes the skin thanks to a hyaluronic complex and vitamin C.

8. Ilia True Skin Serum Foundation

Ilia's foundation is the best of both worlds because it's formulated to be both a makeup product and skincare product. There's aloe leaf, rose hip, jojoba, and marula oil in the formula to soothe skin, reduce redness, and minimize the look of fine lines. It's also a lightweight consistency that is completely buildable.

9. Clé de Peau Beauté Radiant Fluid Matte Foundation SPF 20

This one may be a splurge, but it has some pretty amazing skincare benefits. It's a soft-matte liquid foundation that boosts the skin with hydration for eight hours and can reduce the appearance of pores and roughness after about two weeks.

10. BareMinerals Original Liquid Mineral Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 20

BareMinerals' foundation is clean and vegan with 88% naturally derived ingredients. It contains a healthy mineral complex to refine the skin's texture, olive-derived squalane to hydrate, and peptide and prickly pear extract to reduce redness and the look of prores.

Skincare Products for Textured Skin

And if you're looking for skincare products to treat your uneven skin and smooth it once and for all, take a look at these below.

Retinol is great for smoothing the skin, but it can be irritating for some people. This option from Versed is very gentle and works well even on sensitive skin. It's a mix of microencapsulated retinol and natural retinol alternatives to improve the skin's texture, refine skin tone, and keep the pores clear.

Sunday Riley's Good Genes product is an anti-aging treatment that works to clear skin and promote collagen production. The lactic acid in the formula plumps lines and exfoliates while licorice brightens, lemongrass boosts radiance, and aloe soothes.

Editor Anna LaPlaca credits this face mask with improving her skin texture. "In just 10 minutes, Caudalie's glycolic peel works its magic and transforms my skin texture into that of a baby's bottom. (I wish that were an exaggeration.) It's a strong formula, so I use it just once or twice a week," she says.

Paula's Choice's exfoliant is one of the most popular and best-selling ones out there. It's formulated to clear and minimize pores, exfoliate any dead skin cells and buildup, and soothe inflammation.

CeraVe's retinol serum is specifically made to refine the skin's texture and reduce the appearance of post-acne marks. In addition to encapsulated retinol, it also contains three essential ceramides, licorice-root extract, and niacinamide.

Next: Getting Baby-Smooth Skin Is Easier Than You Think—Here's Your Step-By-Step Guide

Related Stories