During summer I only operate in two makeup worlds – full coverage, fight-the-sweat-moustache foundation, and breezy/dewy tints that just enhance my natural skin and let my freckles through.

Over the holidays I tried out a bunch of dewy foundations / tinted moisturisers to see which ones were primo. Sometimes these can verge on literally looking like nothing when worn, or being too thick or sticky. It’s a real treat when you finally score a light, glow-giving dewy foundation, you know?

Here are some I love.

1. Chantecaille Just Skin

The Best ‘Your Skin But Better’ Foundations For Low-Key Coverage & A Dewy Finish
Chantecaille @ Mecca Just Skin, $113

This is my go-to now. It is excellent on so many levels – not only is it hydrating and adds a sheer, tone balancing wash of colour to skin, it also protects against environmental aggressors like pollution (hello, Sydney smoke) and has a low level of UV protection – although, I highly recommend you still wear SPF 50+.

2. Mecca Cosmetica Weekend Skin

The Best ‘Your Skin But Better’ Foundations For Low-Key Coverage & A Dewy Finish
Mecca Cosmetica Weekend Skin, $40

What’s great about this tint is it adjusts a bit to your skin tone – obviously you can’t just go buy a completely wrong tone for your skin, but it means if you’re a bit peachier than a straight beige, or a bit blue-toned, it’ll blend more effectively. It also says it protects against blue light damage from computers, and is hydrating as well.

3. Avene Tinted Compact Cream SPF 50+

The Best ‘Your Skin But Better’ Foundations For Low-Key Coverage & A Dewy Finish
Avene Tinted Compact Cream SPF 50+, $35.99

This has much more coverage than your usual dewy foundation, but it nails the dewy factor and is light as hell on skin. It’s my go-to when I go to the gym at lunchtime and need to re-apply makeup, but don’t want to look re-applied if that makes sense. It was also a dream on holidays because I could just chuck it in my handbag.

4. MAC Face And Body Foundation

The Best ‘Your Skin But Better’ Foundations For Low-Key Coverage & A Dewy Finish
MAC Face and Body Foundation, $69

A long-time favourite of makeup artists globally, the reason everyone loves this foundation (including me) is because it’s so buildable. Wear one layer and it’ll give your skin a dewy, are-they-wearing-foundation look. Add a couple more and you’ll start concealing uneven skin tone and so on.

5. IT Cosmetics CC Cream SPF 50+

The Best ‘Your Skin But Better’ Foundations For Low-Key Coverage & A Dewy Finish
IT Cosmetics CC Cream SPF 50+, $61

The cult favourite among Australian beauty editors, this medium-coverage foundation is dewy as hell and such an easy day-to-day wear. It’s definitely not as light-on as some others in this list, but it gives you everything – SPF protection, hydration, colour correction and skincare benefits.

Image: Mecca Cosmetica / Victoria Baron