• 10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed) 1
  • 10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed) 2
  • 10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed) 3
  • 10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed) 4
  • 10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed) 5

10 Best Foundations for Cosplay in 2022 (Cosplayer-Reviewed)

Nowadays, everyone’s all about the no-makeup makeup trend. This all changes, of course, when you’re cosplaying. When you put on that costume and you do up your face, you aren’t trying to be yourself; instead, you’re mimicking the idealized face of a fantasy, cartoon, or anime character. The basis of this all is the makeup foundation.

So it makes sense that what you look for in a cosplay foundation would be different from what you’d want to put on your face day to day. You want to think about coverage, duration, and how it’s going to look in photos. With the help of Instagrammer Haku Kaze, we’ll show you how to find a foundation that will make you look as good as fiction. Haku highly recommended Shu Uemura's Petal Skin Fluid Foundation because of its beautiful coverage and finish.

Featured in this article

Haku Kaze
mybest US Editors
  • Last updated: 08-16-2022
Table of Contents

How to Choose Foundation for Cosplay – Buying Guide

Cosplay’s a bit removed from real life, so we knew we needed to talk to an insider for this one. We contacted Haku Kaze of Instagram fame to see what goes on inside her head when shopping for a cosplay foundation.

Different Foundations Serve Different Purposes Throughout the Day

Conventions can last all day, and you don’t want your makeup to slip even once during that time. That’s why many cosplayers will layer their makeup, using different foundations to fulfill different purposes.

Liquid Foundation Sets Up a High Coverage Base for Flawless Anime Skin

Liquid Foundation Sets Up a High Coverage Base for Flawless Anime Skin
Liquid foundation pastes itself to skin, so you could say it lasts longer and covers better than powder, in general. Many cosplayers–regardless of skin type–turn to liquids to lay down an opaque base. If they do have oily skin, like Haku, they’ll set it with powder or layer it under foundation with a mattifying, pore-filling primer so it doesn’t slip.
When choosing a liquid foundation, look out for consistency. More watery formulas spread out easily; therefore, they blend more smoothly into the skin, minimizing damage. However, they fall short when it comes to coverage.
Liquid Foundation Sets Up a High Coverage Base for Flawless Anime Skin

Thicker formulas, including creams, will hide your blemishes, which is what you want for your cosplay. Just remember that they might not be as breathable and can aggravate oily skin.

Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze
I feel like, traditionally, powder foundations are better for oily skin. But for me—I used to have really oily skin, but now I have oily-combination skin—I like using liquid foundation more. So I think a lot of it is really preference.

For consistency, I tend to go middle-of-the-line, because things that are too watery blend out more sheer, or they don't sit well on my skin. Foundations that are too thick tend to be too cakey for me, so I like that consistency that’s right in the middle.

Powder Foundations Are Perfect for Touch-Ups Between Photoshoots

Powder Foundations Are Perfect for Touch-Ups Between Photoshoots

Conventions can stretch on for hours—and if you're sweating or if you have oily skin, then chances are, your makeup’s going to start sliding off in the middle of it. For this reason, many cosplayers carry around powder foundation to fix up their face throughout the day.

Powder foundation is compact, not as messy as liquid, and will absorb the grease off your face—that's why they’re especially suited for oily skin. Just remember that you can’t set cream products on top of powder products.

Powder Foundations Are Perfect for Touch-Ups Between Photoshoots
You could also try cushion foundation. It’s basically a pillow soaked in liquid foundation housed in a compact. Cushions are popular because they’re convenient; you just pull it out, dab on some foundation with the included puff, and slip it back into your bag.
Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze

I really like sandwiching products. So, when I start putting on makeup, I’ll put on a primer, which will set up a base. Then after that, I’ll put down a cream foundation, then concealer, and then set that with powder. That’s what will make your makeup last the longest—it’s kind of like a lamination process. 


Sometimes, if I use cream products—like cream blushes or highlighters—I’ll put that on and then I’ll set my face with powder. The rule of thumb is that you don’t put cream products on top of powder products. Or else, it tends to ball up and break apart. In any case, that sandwiching effect is really important in my book.

Check for Hydrating Ingredients

Check for Hydrating Ingredients

How much you should focus on hydration when you purchase a foundation depends on your skin type and the weather at the convention where you plan to debut your cosplay. Dry skin needs hydration, but so may other skin types—especially if the weather calls for it. For example, if you are scheduled for an outdoor photoshoot in the winter, when the air is stripped of moisture, then you will need a hydrating foundation. 

There used to be a rule of thumb where liquid foundation was good for dry skin and powder was good for oily—but there are now different formulas that adapt to your skin type. Haku mentioned J.Cat Beauty’s Aquasurance as an example. It's a powder foundation that’s been infused with water, making it suitable even for the dry days of winter.

Check for Hydrating Ingredients

So when looking for a moisturizing foundation, keep an eye out for ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, often touted as a must-have for people with dry skin. Other than that, you can also look for popular plant and seed oils, such as almond, rose hip, maracuja, and jojoba.

Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze

Because I feel like skin can be kind of temperamental—so depending on how you treat it and depending on the weather that you’re in, you really have to know how your skin is doing in order to choose the kind of foundation that you want to wear for that day. I have slightly normal skin, and it fluctuates. Sometimes, I’ll need something that’s more moisturizing, or I’ll need something that’s more drying.

Test the Foundation Against Your Neck to Choose Your Shade

Test the Foundation Against Your Neck to Choose Your Shade

Before purchasing a foundation, you'll want to test it to see if it matches your color. Thanks to the sun and the forces of nature, your skin doesn't look like just one shade, so think about where you want to swatch. The neck is generally a good place. You want the color of your face to match the color of your neck, as it's a body part that isn’t overly exposed to the dyeing effects of the sun.

If you have dry to normal skin, choose the shade that’s the closest to your natural color. If you have oily skin, you might want to go a shade lighter. This is because foundation will mix with the oils on your skin and undergo a process called oxidation—which, among other things, deepens its color and makes you look an odd shade of orange.

Test the Foundation Against Your Neck to Choose Your Shade

It’s better to choose a foundation that matches your skin and not your character’s. As Haku pointed out, foundation doesn’t last all day. And if your skin does, by any chance, peek through, you want to make sure you still look as natural as possible.

Then, there’s still the problem of online shopping. How are you supposed to choose a shade if you don’t even have a sample to swatch? Haku talks a bit about her process below.
Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze

If you’re shopping online, you should look at the undertones a brand has, and then look at the shade range. To find your undertone, a lot of people say that if your veins are more green, then you have warm undertones; if your veins are more blue, then you have cool undertones. Neutral is in between. But choosing which to go with is also a preference, depending on how you edit your photos afterwards.

Matte Foundation Will Give You a Warm, Deep Glow During Any Photo Shoot

Matte Foundation Will Give You a Warm, Deep Glow During Any Photo Shoot
An experienced photographer can work magic with a camera. And Haku herself says that if the foundation looks good in person, than it should look good in photos. But there are a few things you can keep in mind to make shoots go smoother.
First, know that at the hands of an inexperienced photographer, dewy foundation can make you look oily. This may be a problem if you often go to cons where passersby take your pictures.
Matte Foundation Will Give You a Warm, Deep Glow During Any Photo Shoot
Second, it’s common knowledge that the sun is the skin’s arch-nemesis. If you are going to be taking photos at blazing noon, then go ahead and wear foundation that includes UV protection. But if you are going to be somewhere darker, then SPF can give you a white cast in photos, especially in the presence of flash.
Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze

I feel like if the photographer knows what they’re doing, a dewy foundation shouldn’t be a problem. But SPF just gives you flashback—during night shoots especially because of the flash. If I know I’m going to do a shoot at night, then I won’t wear foundation with SPF. 


But also, most foundations don’t have SPF. It’s usually the BB creams and the CC creams that act like foundation—but also have other skincare properties in them—that include SPF. One of my favorite skin products is this one BB cream that has SPF in it. So if I’m going to do a night shoot, then I won’t wear that one, specifically.

10 Best Foundations for Cosplay

Here are 10 foundations especially suited for cosplay, including a few favorites from our expert, Haku’s, arsenal. Take a look!

Image
1
Shu Uemura Petal Skin Fluid Foundation 1

Shu Uemura

2
J.Cat Beauty Aquasurance Compact Foundation 1

J.Cat Beauty

3
Fenty Beauty by Rihanna Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation 1

Fenty Beauty by Rihanna

4
Revlon ColorStay Liquid Makeup for Combination/Oily Skin 1

Revlon

5
Revlon ColorStay Whipped Crème Makeup 1

Revlon

6
Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup 1

Estee Lauder

7
Fiona Stiles Luminous Finish Foundation Concentrate 1

Fiona Stiles

8
MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation 1

MAKE UP FOR EVER

9
Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup 1

Urban Decay

10
Yves Saint Laurent  Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation 1

Yves Saint Laurent

Name

Petal Skin Fluid Foundation

Aquasurance Compact Foundation

Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

ColorStay Liquid Makeup for Combination/Oily Skin

ColorStay Whipped Crème Makeup

Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup

Luminous Finish Foundation Concentrate

Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation

Features

Leaves Your Skin Natural, Radiant, and Soft as Petals–Even Without a Setting Powder

Moisturizing Powder That Doesn’t Look Powdery or Cakey

Comes in 40 Natural Shades That Stay on Oily Skin All Day Long

Medium to Full Coverage, Long-Wearing Product for Oily Skin

Good, Opaque Foundation that Lasts Over 8 Hours, Even on Oily Skin

Full Coverage Foundation That Locks in for the Entire Day

Dewy Finish, Silky Feel, and Good Medium Coverage for Dry to Combo Skin

Made to Look Good in Photos With 40 Shades, Leaving You with Flawless, Radiant Skin

Lightweight, Velvety Foundation You Can Build Up to Full Coverage

Radiant to the Eye and Satin-Like to the Touch–Beautiful Finish for Dry Skin

Price$85.00$15.75$52.73$5.49$44.99$33.89$19.99$43.33$48.80$22.99
TypeLiquidPowderLiquidLiquidCreamLiquidLiquidLiquidLiquidLiquid
Skin typeNot providedAllNormal, combination, oilyCombination, oilyAllAllNot providedAllAllAll
Volume1.01 oz.0.31 oz.1.08 oz.1 oz.0.8 oz.1 oz.1 oz.1.01 oz.1 oz.1 oz.
FinishSemi-matteNaturalMatteMatteNot providedSemi-matteSemi-matteNaturalDemi-matteNatural
Link
1

Shu UemuraPetal Skin Fluid Foundation

$85.00

TypeLiquid
Skin typeNot provided
Volume1.01 oz.
FinishSemi-matte
2

J.Cat BeautyAquasurance Compact Foundation

$15.75

TypePowder
Skin typeAll
Volume0.31 oz.
FinishNatural
3

Fenty Beauty by RihannaPro Filt’r Soft Matte Longwear Foundation

$52.73

TypeLiquid
Skin typeNormal, combination, oily
Volume1.08 oz.
FinishMatte
4

RevlonColorStay Liquid Makeup for Combination/Oily Skin

$5.49

TypeLiquid
Skin typeCombination, oily
Volume1 oz.
FinishMatte
5

RevlonColorStay Whipped Crème Makeup

$44.99

TypeCream
Skin typeAll
Volume0.8 oz.
FinishNot provided
6

Estee LauderDouble Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup

$33.89

TypeLiquid
Skin typeAll
Volume1 oz.
FinishSemi-matte
7

Fiona StilesLuminous Finish Foundation Concentrate

$19.99

TypeLiquid
Skin typeNot provided
Volume1 oz.
FinishSemi-matte
8

MAKE UP FOR EVERUltra HD Invisible Cover Foundation

$43.33

TypeLiquid
Skin typeAll
Volume1.01 oz.
FinishNatural
9

Urban DecayNaked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

$48.80

TypeLiquid
Skin typeAll
Volume1 oz.
FinishDemi-matte
10

Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation

$22.99

TypeLiquid
Skin typeAll
Volume1 oz.
FinishNatural

More Tips for the Rest of Your Cosplay

Cosplayers are craftsmen, makeup artists, and actors all in one. They bring to life the most amazing characters. We interviewed two other talented women on different aspects of cosplay. Give them a visit below!

Buying Guide Reviewed by Cosplayer Haku Kaze

Haku Kaze
Cosplayer
Haku Kaze

This expert reviewed the contents of the buying guide for accuracy and provided factual corrections when necessary. They did not participate in the product selection process, nor are they affiliated with any of our choices unless explicitly stated so.

  • Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more mybest recommendations! For questions or comments, leave us feedback via a Google Form on our Contact Us page.

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