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8 Ways to Sweat-Proof Your Makeup for a Snatched Summer


When the seasons change and warmer weather becomes an everyday occurrence, we can only think about one thing: how to keep our makeup from slipping off. There’s nothing worse than nailing the perfect eyeshadow or eyeliner look, only for it to melt off the second you leave your house or apartment.

But, there is a way you can protect your look before the summer elements hit you and make all that hard glam work be in vain. Here are all of the tips and tricks you need to know to make your makeup totally sweat-proof. 

About the Expert:
Azesha Ramcharan is a wedding and production makeup artist based in New York’s Hudson Valley. 

How to Make Your Makeup Sweat-Proof

1. Wash Your Face

Washing your face will get rid of any lingering gunk or makeup from the day before and allow you to have a truly new canvas to paint your makeup look onto. If you need to exfoliate your skin, choose a cleanser with AHAs or BHAs, or if you just need a quick clean, opt for a gentle cleanser that won’t strip your skin. We love the Gentle Gel Facial Cleanser With Geranium Leaf, Bergamot, Rose-Bud by GROWN ALCHEMIST.

2. Prep the Skin

“Swapping rich moisturizers and eye creams for gel, gel-cream hybrids, and serum formulas containing ingredients like glycerin, aloe, and hyaluronic acid is an effective way to prep skin for sweat-proof makeup,” explains Ramcharan. 

When prepping the skin, you want to minimize the amount of products you’re using and opt for fewer products with more skincare ingredients packed inside. Think “toners that act as serum and primer or sunscreen that’s also a moisturizer and primer,” Ramcharan adds. 

Try CIRCCELL’S Dew PH Perfector, which is an oil free pH balancing toner, serum, and primer.

Ramcharan also loves CHARLOTTE TILBURY’S  Invisible UV Flawless Primer with SPF 50, thanks to its hydrating properties and SPF production, plus, “it doesn’t leave a white cast or flashback in photographs.”

3. Always Add SPF

Whether you use a primer like the CHARLOTTE TILBURY one mentioned above that’s packed with SPF, or make SPF a skincare step on its own entirely, make sure you’re adding it in some form. You should be wearing SPF everyday in all seasons, but in the summer, when the sun’s rays are usually the harshest—it’s a must. Applying SPF should be the last step of your skincare routine before makeup. 

4. Apply Liquid Makeup First

Ramcharan is a fan of applying any liquid makeup first, like foundations, concealers, and CC creams so they can dry by the time it’s time to set your entire makeup look. However, she also notes that she sets any liquid application with a small amount of powder as soon as it’s applied. 

5. Read Your Makeup Labels

Ramcharan suggests looking for a few ingredients in your products that have even more sweat-proof abilities. “Film forming ingredients such as dimethicone as well as polymers and cross polymers contribute sweat-proofing qualities to makeup,” she says. “Also isododecane and hydrogenated polydecene are emollients with waterproofing capabilities used in many sweat-proof formulas.”

6. Apply Setting Powder…Sparingly

“I recommend using a minimal amount of powder to set makeup,” says Ramcharan. “A puff can be used but for self setting makeup formulas a light dusting of powder applied with a brush is fine. I think one of the biggest mistakes people make when attempting to sweat-proof their makeup is applying too much powder. The effect can be heavy and it won’t actually improve the longevity of the makeup.”

7. Apply a Setting Spray as Your Final Step

When it comes to setting sprays, we love The Setting Spray by SHADES OF SHAN. It’s packed with hyaluronic acid for hydrating and ginseng to help minimize the appearance of pores. 

“I spray the product onto the face using an “X” formation,” explains Ramcharan. “Doing this ensures both sides of the face get coverage from top to bottom. Just like with sweat-proof foundations, look for film forming ingredients like polymers such as acrylate copolymer, VP/VA copolymer and PVP.”

8. Dab, Don’t Wipe

“Never wipe or rub your face to remove sweat. Lightly dab,” says Ramcharan. “No makeup will withstand rubbing and wiping.” You can use blotting sheets periodically to help keep skin oils from breaking down makeup, she adds. 

“When adding blush, contour, highlighter, or bronzer I recommend liquid formulas that contain similar ingredients to those found in sweat-proof foundation,” says Ramcharan. “They’ll be the longest wearing and least susceptible to fading and streaking in sweaty conditions. Eyebrow makeup is particularly susceptible to the degrading effects of sweat. Using waterproof eyebrow formulas will ensure brows stay as you intend them to look.”

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About the author
Brittany Leitner
Brittany is an award winning beauty, health, and lifestyle writer and author of the poetry book "23 Emotions." She has eight years of experience writing for brands like Elite Daily, The. Dr. Oz Show, Shape, Stylecaster, Bustle, and more.
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Article Last Updated May 20, 2024 12:00 AM