How To Waterproof Your Make-Up
How To Waterproof Your Make-Up

How To Waterproof Your Make-Up

5 minutes read

Waterproof make-up can be a game-changer in so many situations. Whether you find yourself unprepared for a rainy day, take an impromptu plunge in a pool or get drenched in sweat on a hot summer’s day – if your make-up doesn’t instantly smear on contact with water, a lot of mess could be avoided.

So, we’ve compiled the best tips, tricks and product recommendations that ensure your make-up can resist any watery disasters that may come your way. Here’s what you should know.

woman with water-drenched face

Waterproofing your make-up: tips and tricks

Reach for primers

To ensure your make-up (whether they’re of the waterproof variety or not) lasts on your skin, use primers. Foundation primers, eyeshadow bases, lash primers… there are so many in the market that can increase the longevity of your make-up.  

Go easy on your skincare

If you’re on a beach holiday, it may be a good idea to go lighter on your skincare as well. “I do lower maintenance skincare on holiday,” says Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager.  

“Apart from the addition of extra SPF, the rest of my skincare takes a bit of a backseat. Your skin is already going to be a lot more moisturised because of the amount of SPF you’re applying on holiday. I just carry Blue Orchid Oil to use overnight and a good oil-based face wash to take all the SPF and my waterproof mascara off.” 

Using lighter moisturisers and serums will also ensure that whatever you apply on top doesn’t slip and slide away easily.

Use the bare minimum

“If you’re going to a hot climate and you’re going to be sweating, I would question whether you even need to wear foundation,” says McHale. “Ask yourself: can you get away with just brows and mascara? Maybe use a long-lasting concealer in some areas and a lip stain. It will be far lower maintenance.” 

She recommends going lighter on your base make-up and focusing on eyes and cheeks, instead. In these areas, you can use more long-wearing formulas.  

Try a tinted SPF

This is another useful solution if you’re going on holiday. “I think they would be a good alternative to foundation,” says McHale. “So, you get some extra sun protection and also a bit of coverage.” 

The Mineral Sun Care Compact, £27 offers SPF 30, UVA/UVB protection along with light coverage. Plus, the formula is suitable for sensitive skin too. If you want something with a bit more coverage, try IT Cosmetics’ Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF 50+, £33 that has a buildable formula and comes in 14 shades.

It cosmetics CC cream

Reach for lip liners

Before applying any lip products, use a lip liner to shape and fill the lip. “You will find that whatever you put on lasts a bit longer and doesn’t fade unevenly,” says McHale. 

Waterproof make-up for swimming

If you’re going to be immersing yourself in water, it’s best to stick with completely waterproof formulas – from eyeliner and mascara to concealer and brow gel.  

You could also consider investing in the Make Up For Ever Aqua Seal, £22. It’s an innovative alcohol-free fluid that you can mix into any of your make-up (think powder eyeshadows, liners, glitter pigments, blush…) to instantly make them waterproof. Just remember to use an oil-based cleanser to clean your skin and brushes later. 

The best waterproof make-up to try

Base: waterproof foundation and concealer

  1. If a foundation-free look isn’t for you, try the MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation, £32. It’s a relatively lightweight formula that offers medium coverage and a luminous finish. Plus, it’s completely waterproof. 
  2. You could also skip foundation and get a bit of coverage where you need it with a waterproof concealer like the bareMinerals BAREPRO 16-Hour Full Coverage Concealer, £24. It’s especially good for oily skin types as the formula contains kaolin clay – an ingredient that helps absorb excess oil. 

Eyes: waterproof eyeliners, mascara and eyebrow products

  1. The Waterproof Eye Pencil, £19.50 is a holiday make-up bag essential. The long-wearing, waterproof formula won’t budge all day. You could use it to do a simple liner look or use the smudger on the other end to blur the line and create a softer, smoked out evening look. 
  2. If you prefer a sharper winged eyeliner, reach for Urban Decay’s Perversion Waterproof Pen, £19. The pigment is jet-black and glides effortlessly over the lids. 
  3. Want perfect brows that don’t budge even under water? Try the Brow Duo, £22. It’s double ended, with a pigment on one side (to fill and define) and a brow mascara on the other (to brush through and set). 
  4. Lastly, invest in a good waterproof mascara to frame the eyes. We like the Wonder Perfect Mascara 4D Waterproof, £23 that offers both volume and length, and is also good at holding a curl for long hours.
    waterproof mascara

Read: Waterproof Mascaras for Luscious, Smudge-Free Lashes 

Cheeks & lips: waterproof blush and lip colour

  1. You can’t beat a cheeks stain when you want long-lasting colour. And Benefit’s Benetint, £25.50 is perfect for the job. Just dot the tint on the apples of your cheeks, blend with fingers and you will be left with a rosy flush that lasts the day.
  2. We always keep the Lip Oils, £20 handy on holiday. And McHale is a fan of them too. “On holiday, you also want to ensure your lips are hydrated. This takes care of that, and it’s also splash-proof,” she says. 
  3. Another tinted balm to try is the Glow Recipe Blueberry Bounce Lip Pop, £19.50. The formula adapts to your skin’s pH and creates a berry stain on the lips that doesn’t fade easily. 

Enjoyed this tutorial? Take a peek at these:

A Failproof Guide To Concealer Application 

Thin Or Sparse Eyebrows? Here’s How To Draw Them On Perfectly

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