The ultimate guide to waterproof makeup (2024)

Waterproof makeup has become a staple in many of our beauty routines for its durability and resistance to water and sweat. That’s obviously essential when we’re lounging on the beach between dips in the sea, it’s also a must-have for destination weddings, outdoor activities, sports and even long days when you need your look to last without constant touch-ups.

What makes waterproof makeup different? It’s specially formulated to resist moisture, ensuring it stays put even when exposed to water, humidity or sweat. Waterproof products often contain ingredients like silicone, waxes and film-forming agents that create a barrier against moisture to avoid smudging when wet.

As its moniker indicates, waterproof makeup is designed to be water resistant, so these products are often trickier to remove than regular makeup. Wherever you go, you’ll need to pack a good-quality oil-based remover to break down the product (before you ask, most makeup wipes won’t work), like the cult makeup remover Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Oil, followed by a soothing creamy cleanser like Skin Rocks The Cream Cleanser Fragrance Free.

To achieve a water-resistant look that can withstand anything that you throw at it, keep reading for your must-have kit and guide to waterproof makeup.

Foundations and concealers

Before applying any makeup to your face, you’ll need to use an SPF to ensure your skin is protected from the sun. Diorsnow UV Shield Cushion combines protective vitamin C and edelweiss extract with water-resistant SPF 50 protection, and its peachy hue gives every skin tone a glowy boost.

When choosing a foundation for full coverage, Estée Lauder Double Wear Double Wear Stay In Place Foundation is ideal for hot climates. Coming in more than 40 buildable shades that provide matte coverage, 24 hours of wear and a gentle blurring effect. It is your secret weapon to look flawless in wedding pictures. For lighter coverage and touch-ups, Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick is easy to apply and combines concealer, foundation and powder all in a single waterproof stick with a long-lasting finish. If you want to contour, you could use a darker shade of this foundation stick to add depth to the face.

Finish off your look with IT cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Concealer, which offers full waterproof coverage plus peptides, vitamins and hyaluronic acid to deliver a protective and hydrating boost. Apply with a Beauty Pie Pro Angled Concealer Brush for flawlessly blended, long-lasting results.

Eyebrows and eyeliner

Smearing your eye makeup in warm climes might seem inevitable, but with developments in long-wear makeup it’s actually entirely preventable. Brow enthusiasts should seek out e.l.f. Cosmetics Instant Lift Waterproof Brow Pencil to keep their brows shaped, shaded and in place. Sealed with Maybelline Tattoo Brow 36h your brows will be locked in place until you decide they’re off the clock.

Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner is the best for a long-lasting product. The microtip ensures you can get the finest flick possible, while Lancôme Lash Idôle Eye Liner is ultra dark, has a super fine brush nib and the 24-hour formula means it’ll survive everything from scuba diving in Sri Lanka to a wedding in St Lucia. If you prefer a pencil liner, Estée Lauder Double Wear 24 Hour Waterproof Gel Eye Pencil is ideal for creating a smokey rock-n-roll look with its foam end for blending, but move fast because when the formula sets, it really won’t move. For a colour boost, use a little Guerlain The Intense Colour Eye Pencil in Plum Peony to add a subtle, waterproof colour to the waterline that will last from the morning until the witching hour.

The ultimate guide to waterproof makeup (3)

Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner

The ultimate guide to waterproof makeup (4)

Guerlain The Intense Colour eye pencil

Mascara and eyeshadow

Gone are the crispy, dry waterproof mascaras of yore. The newest formulas combine serious style prowess with a waterproof hold that looks incredible all day. For natural but defined lashes, try Chanel Inimitable Waterproof Mascara. The comb-like brush catches every lash, while Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara adds serious waterproof volume and thickness to each lash in a way that rivals false lashes. Those with shorter lashes might prefer L’Oréal Volume Million Lash Waterproof Mascara, which adds volume but has a spiky, short-bristled brush that helps to coat and thicken every lash.

The ultimate guide to waterproof makeup (2024)
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