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Masks are an essential these days. Whether you’re donning a surgical mask or a reusable cloth mask, you’re likely to notice that your usual beauty routines may need some changes. We’ve seen many people complaining about acne when wearing a mask and how their go-to makeup looks are smudging under their masks.

If you’re worried about the look of patchy or cakey makeup when you remove your mask at a dining establishment with your friends, date, or work associates, here are tips and product recommendations that can help you.

Tips and product recommendations to prevent smudged makeup under a mask

1. Moisturise your skin to help makeup adhere better

Best Korean Moisturisers Featured

If this isn’t already integrated into your routine, it’s time to start using a good moisturiser. Besides creating a barrier between your skin and the mask to reduce the chances of it giving your skincare problems, using a moisturiser helps your makeup stay put for longer under the mask; this is because makeup adheres to hydrated skin better than dehydrated skin.

Moisturisers that may help your makeup last longer under a mask

SENKA Deep Moist Gel Cream

Senka Suijyun Deep Moist Gel Cream

Ease into the habit of moisturising in the morning with a super lightweight yet deeply hydrating gel-type cream like this one from SENKA. With zero residue and stickiness, this affordable moisturiser will hydrate and prep your skin for all the makeup without any heaviness or discomfort.

Not convinced? See the glowing review of this moisturiser by 20 Daily Vanity readers here.

Retails for S$21.90 each and is available at Don Don Donki, GuardianWatsons, and Welcia-BHG stores.

Hada Labo Kouji Treatment Cream

Tips Prevent Makeup Smudge Mask Moisturiser

From the newest collection by Hada Labo, this moisturiser has a lightweight, non-greasy texture and absorbs quickly into skin.

It also harnesses the skin-boosting, nutrient-rich properties of KOUJI essence, an extract proven to contain higher moisture levels than Hyaluronic Acid and Collagen, to diminish the look of rough patches and fine lines.

Retails for S$47.90 and is available at Guardian and Watsons.

2. Use a primer to smoothen skin and mattify it

Foundation Tips For Acne Skin 5 1

While our previous tips may be useful especially for those with dry and dehydrated skin, those with oily skin are likely to need extra help to make sure that their masks don’t interfere with their makeup. We’ve always said that primers are an essential especially in Singapore’s humid climate, but this product is even more important for makeup under a mask.

A good primer helps to mattify your skin while creating a smoother canvas so that makeup is able to glide on more easily and stay on for a longer time. While those who are oily tend to find the most gratification from using a primer, there are primers made for all skin types.

Primers that may help your makeup last longer under a mask

For oily skin: Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional Face Primer

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer Porefessional

One of the most popular face primers to date, you’ll love this one for its mattifying abilities that smooth out unsightly pores and fine lines despite its lightweight formula. You can get more recommendations in our previous article about primers for oily skin.

Retails between S$23 (7.5ml) and S$95 (44ml) on Sephora.

For dry skin: Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Hydrating Primer

This contains skin-hydrating ingredients such as Grape Seed Oil and Sodium Hyaluronate to soften dry patches on your skin. This helps make sure your makeup doesn’t settle into fine lines nor flake under your mask. You can get more recommendations in our previous article about primers for dry skin.

Retails for S$48 on Sephora.

3. Opt for powders

Foundation Vs Concealer Takeaway

If you find yourself with disappearing makeup throughout the day, a likely reason is that you’ve been using a cream product without setting it, causing it to fade or be rubbed off by your mask. While cream products like BB creams, cream bronzers, and blushers offer a natural, healthy look like no other, consider switching to their longer-lasting powder counterparts, or set them with a finishing powder for a look that stays on all day. For a glowy look that lasts, you can always use a mist or setting spray when you touch up later!

Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder

Makeup Tips To Prevent Smudge Under Mask

We may love our liquid highlighter for the dewy, ethereal look it presents, but this holy grail highlighter from Hourglass is a powder alternative to consider.

It gives a soft, sheer look that appears natural (without a heavy metallic finish) so that your skin looks like it’s really glowing.

Available in four shades. Retails for S$67 on Sephora.

Natasha Denona Mini Blush and Glow Duo

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer Natasha Denona Blush

You can still attain that glowy look even without a cream formula with this illuminating blush and highlighter duo. In a warm, universally flattering shade of pink to suit any skin tone, layer it up for more intensity, or just once for a subtle flush.

Also available in a Bronzer version for a healthy glow, both retail on Sephora for S$29.

Make Up For Ever Matte Velvet Skin Blurring Powder Foundation

Powder Foundation For Makeup Under Mask

Considering a switch from liquid foundation? This may be a great powder alternative to consider.

A water-resistant powder foundation that helps blur blemishes and visible pores, this also has a breathable formula that won’t clog your skin.

Available in 30 shades. Retails for S$72 on Sephora.

4. Ditch the glosses

Bold Lips 11 1

As much as we love a good shiny lip, we’re sad to say glosses aren’t the most practical when wearing masks. Switch to a matte lip product instead, whether it be a lipstick for high impact colour, lip tints for comfortable wear, or even liquid lipsticks so you won’t have to worry about any smudges. Just remember to moisturise them often with a nourishing lip balm so they don’t dry out!

Hurraw! Lip Balm

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer Hurraw Lip Balm

A vegan lip balm made with premium and organic natural ingredients, Hurraw!’s is popular for its highly moisturising properties, as well as it’s wide selection of 16 scents (think root beer, chocolate, mint, chai, and even an unscented one).

SGD7.50 on Hermo.

3CE Velvet Lip Tint

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer 3ce Lip Tint

Comfortable and long wearing, these Korean matte lip tints glide on like velvet and come in more than 10 different muted shades for everyday wear, whether you like a power red lip or a subtle nude. You can get more recommendations in our previous article about the best lip tints to try.

From S$17.90 (At S$11.90, 34% off at the time of writing) on Shopee.

Huda Beauty Liquid Matte Lipstick

Lipstick That Stays Under Mask

A comfortable, long-wear liquid lipstick that dries matte, this has an intense colour payoff in gorgeous, wearable shades. Its lightweight formula is transfer-free so that it will not even stain your mask once it dries down.

Available in 19 shades. Retails for S$42 on Sephora.

5. Be prepared to touch up

Foundation Application Tips 1

Sometimes even mattifying powders and setting sprays won’t stop your makeup from flaking, so don’t forget to bring along your favourite products to touch it up throughout the day. Ensure the products are designed to layer well, and not cake so as to prevent a flaky look midday.

Laneige Layering Cover Cushion Foundation & Concealing Base

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer Laneige Cushion Foundation

This innovative product has both a foundation and a high coverage concealer in a chic compact pink case that’ll fit into even the smallest of clutches for touch ups throughout the day. Bonus: users report a cooling feeling upon application, making it perfect for hot days too.

Retails for S$43 at all Laneige boutiques and counters, as well as Sephora.

Fenty Beauty Invisimatte Blotting Paper

How To Make Your Makeup Last Longer Fenty Beauty Blotting Paper

This travel-friendly blotting paper comes in a refillable hexagon compact with a mirror to remove grease and shine without removing or smearing any of your makeup.

Retails for S$26 on Sephora.