Can I Use Any Foundation With an Airbrush Machine?


Foundation has come a long way since the women of Ancient Greece started using it thousands of years ago. Thanks to science and technology, both the ingredients and application of makeup have evolved significantly to include methods and materials users would never have been able to imagine years back. Despite this, some people still wonder if any foundation can be used with an airbrush machine.

Will your regular liquid foundation work with an airbrush machine? Let’s find out.

What Is Airbrush Makeup?

On the off chance that you’re new to the world of makeup, the airbrush technique is among the easiest ways to apply liquid makeup like blushers, illuminators, and foundations. For the most part, it’s used by professional makeup artists for photoshoots, weddings, fashion shows, and other elaborate events.

Compared to sponges or brushes, this tool is considerably more expensive. However, does this also mean that you should always use a specially formulated foundation with it? The answer might surprise you!

Using Regular Foundation in an Airbrush Machine

Not everyone will be on board with this, but YES, you can use a regular liquid foundation in an airbrush machine. In fact, according to, standard liquid makeup of any kind is usable with this tool for as long as it’s properly thinned. That said, with the thicker consistency of some brands, the process won’t exactly be a cakewalk.

An airbrush machine has a pin-sized opening through which liquid foundation passes. Foundation comes out of the gun in mist form, meaning it needs to be thinned out. You can use the following methods to ensure this is done successfully:

1. Moisturizer

Here’s a piece of good news for regular-foundation users out there: You can use your favorite moisturizer to thin out a wide range of makeup foundation. Just add enough drops into your foundation to alter its consistency. This also gives you more hydrating makeup, which is good for your skin. Still, you don’t want to go overboard with this method since it may mess up your product’s overall quality.

2. Water

Got regular makeup and nothing else to thin it out? Use water. Mix a few drops of water into your basic liquid foundation. Your airbrush machine should be able to spray it out easily per your desired coverage.

3. Airbrush Makeup Thinner

Since the conventional liquid foundation is too thick for your airbrush gun, you’ll want to use a makeup thinner product to thin it out. Just make sure you follow the instructions properly. Otherwise, you may run into some trouble with your machine.

When the foundation is thinned out correctly, it’s unlikely to crease around the wrinkles and harsh lines of your face. If the process of blending and mixing is too much work for you, you can always use foundations specifically made for airbrush machines.

Airbrush Foundation Options

The following are airbrush foundations commonly found in today’s market:

1. Silicone-Based Foundation

With this type of product, you’ll have something that blends flawlessly with the skin. It achieves the natural and dewy look that lasts up to 12 hours, which is, on average several hours longer than other varieties. However, it may require you to use a stronger compressor due to its heavier coverage.

2. Prime and Powder Foundation

There’s no question that the all-natural makeup look is a hit these days. This happens to be one of the best products to help you achieve that look effortlessly. It’s a foundation with multi-functional, hydrating qualities that deliver a perfectly gorgeous matte, airbrushed, yet supple look to your skin.

3. Water-Based Foundation

This easy-breezy foundation is just the product you’re looking for to create that shine-free finish. It sets relatively quickly and doesn’t require a powerful compressor to be sprayed out of the airbrush machine.

Many experts agree that water-based foundations are the best foundations to apply before the main makeup because they don’t give you that flakey result.

4. Alcohol-Based Foundation

This type of foundation isn’t typically used on the face because it can dry your skin. That said, it is renowned for its ability to stay on your skin for a long time. For this reason, it’s used mainly as body makeup for film and stage productions.

5. Mineral-Based Foundation

Whether used as an airbrush or a traditional makeup, this kind of foundation delivers sheer coverage. It’s ideal for oily, dry, and combination skin, and typically last for more than a day.

Can You Use Any Foundation With Your Airbrush Gun?

If we’re talking solely of liquid foundation, then the answer would be yes! Airbrush machines are meant to spray foundation onto your face and skin and, therefore, only work with liquid forms of foundation.

An airbrush gun can work with any standard liquid foundation for as long as the makeup is thinned properly. You can use various products for this, like moisturizers, airbrush makeup thinners, and even water. If these methods are simply too much work for you, you can rely on the readily-available airbrush-specific foundation options saturating the market today to solve your problem.

Written by Megan Taylor
Megan is a beauty expert who is passionate about all things makeup and glam! Her love for makeup has brought her to become a beauty pro at Glamour Garden Cosmetics.