Poolside Perfection: Waterproof Looks That Last All Day

Summertime sun and fun present a tricky challenge for beauty lovers. Achieving flawless makeup that lasts all day, especially in the poolside heat, can seem near impossible. Most women have experienced the frustration of a full-glam beat melting away after just a few hours in the sun. And who wants to spend their vacation constantly running to the bathroom for touch-ups? But with the right strategies and products, poolside perfection that withstands splashing, sweating, and long days frolicking under the sun is achievable. This guide will provide tips and product recommendations to help you look and feel gorgeous from sunrise to sunset – no matter how high the mercury rises.

Limit Oil Production

Oil production happens when our sebaceous glands produce an oily substance called sebum. This is a natural process that helps protect and moisturize our skin. However, some people produce excess sebum, leading to oily skin and acne breakouts. Makeup melting is also often caused by excess facial oils mixing with products like foundation and powder (https://www.lemon8-app.com/discover/how%20to%20control%20oil%20production%20on%20face).

There are a few ways to limit excess oil production:

  • Use oil absorbing products – Try blotting papers, mattifying primers or powders containing ingredients like silica to soak up excess oil throughout the day.
  • Use clay masks – Clay masks help remove impurities and absorb oil from the skin. Using them 1-2 times per week can help regulate sebum production.
  • Exfoliate regularly – Exfoliating removes dead skin cells and debris that can clog pores and lead to more oil production. Try a BHA or AHA exfoliant 2-3 times a week.

Following a regular skin care routine with oil-control products can make a big difference in keeping makeup looking freshly applied all day.

Primer Perfection

A primer is an essential first step for making your makeup last by the pool. Primers create a smooth, even base for foundation and prevent oils from breaking through. The benefits of primer for longevity include:

  • Reduces appearance of pores and fine lines so makeup doesn’t settle into them
  • Controls oil and shine for hours
  • Creates a tacky surface for makeup to adhere to
  • Prevents makeup from sliding off throughout the day
  • Minimizes the look of imperfections

image of makeup primer

When choosing a primer for poolside perfection, consider your skin type:

  • Oily skin: Look for oil-free mattifying primers containing ingredients like silicone, kaolin clay, or charcoal.
  • Combination skin: Try a hydrating primer for dry areas and a mattifying primer for oily zones.
  • Dry skin: Seek hydrating primers with hyaluronic acid and moisturizers like glycerin.

Applying primer before sunscreen allows both products to work better. Smooth on a layer all over your face and neck, allowing it to fully absorb before continuing your routine.

Use a Setting Spray to Seal in Makeup

A setting spray is an essential step for ensuring your makeup lasts all day by the pool. The main purpose of setting spray is to seal in your makeup and prevent it from smudging, fading or running even when exposed to water, humidity and sweat.

After applying all your makeup, hold the setting spray 6-8 inches from your face and mist all over. Let it dry completely before heading out into the sun. The polymers in setting spray create a barrier over your makeup to lock it into place.

Look for a setting spray specifically formulated to be sweatproof and waterproof. Avoid products with alcohol, which can be drying.Some of the most effective setting sprays for poolside perfection contain key ingredients like dimethicone, polymers, and silicone to seal in makeup.

Using an oil-absorbing setting spray can also help combat shine and add longevity. Find one with mattifying powders that soak up excess oil on the skin without leaving a white cast or cakeiness.

After the initial application, reapply setting spray every few hours if needed. This will reinforce the barrier and refresh makeup, especially if you go in the water. Setting spray is a makeup artist secret that leads to all day wear without constant touch-ups.

Waterproof Formulas

When it comes to poolside perfection, using waterproof makeup is essential. Waterproof formulas create a barrier that prevents makeup from running or transferring when exposed to water, sweat, humidity, and heat. There are great waterproof options for eyes, lips, and complexion.

For eyes, waterproof mascara is a must. Popular high-end options include Dior Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Waterproof Mascara and Lancome Hypnose Drama Instant Full Body Volume Waterproof Mascara. Drugstore favorites include L’Oreal Voluminous Lash Paradise Waterproof Mascara and Maybelline Total Temptation Waterproof Mascara. Using a waterproof eyeliner like Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner can also help prevent smudging and running.

For lips, waterproof lip color ensures vibrant color that lasts. Long-lasting lipsticks like Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick and Revlon ColorStay Satin Ink Liquid Lipstick are popular picks. Waterproof lip liners can also help prevent feathering. Using a lip primer underneath can boost longevity even more.

When it comes to complexion, waterproof foundations and concealers prevent fading. Leading options include Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup, Lancome Teint Idole Ultra 24H Longwear Foundation, and Too Faced Born This Way Waterproof Sculpting Concealer. For ultimate staying power, use a waterproof setting spray like Urban Decay All Nighter over the completed look.

Application Tips

Proper application techniques can help maximize the longevity of your makeup look. One key technique is “baking.” After applying loose powder under the eyes, on the t-zone, or anywhere that tends to get oily, let it sit for 5-10 minutes undisturbed to really set the makeup. The powder will soak up any oil and create a smooth canvas for the rest of your makeup. Allow each layer of makeup to dry before moving onto the next. Letting your primer fully set before foundation, letting foundation dry before concealer, etc., will help prevent products from mixing together or caking up (1). It’s also important not to layer on too much product. Very thin layers are key for a natural look that lasts. Use the minimal amount needed to achieve your desired coverage and effects (2).

(1) https://www.masterclass.com/articles/how-to-make-makeup-last-all-day#apply-powder-before-foundation
(2) https://www.masterclass.com/articles/how-to-make-makeup-last-all-day#avoid-layering-on-too-much-makeup

Touch-up Tools

No matter how waterproof your makeup is, touch-ups will likely be needed after spending hours in the sun and water. Having the right portable products on hand makes quick fixes easy. Focus on finding mini or travel-sized versions of your makeup bag staples.

Blotting papers are a must for soaking up excess oil and sweat throughout the day. Try Clean & Clear’s Oil Absorbing Sheets for an affordable option.

For on-the-go touch-ups, keep waterproof eyeliner pens and mini mascaras on hand to fix smudges. Waterproof, sweat-proof setting sprays like Urban Decay’s All Nighter help keep makeup in place.

Avoid These Mistakes

Applying makeup improperly can significantly reduce its staying power and longevity throughout the day. Here are some common application errors that can cause your makeup to fade or melt off prematurely:

Over-powdering – While setting powder helps control oils and shine, using too much can make makeup look cakey and flaky. As the day goes on, overly powdered makeup tends to separate and fade. Use a light dusting of powder focused on oily areas only. According to this source, over-powdering is one of the biggest makeup mistakes.

Applying wet-on-wet – When layering liquid or cream products like foundation, concealer, contour, or highlight, make sure each layer is blended in fully and allowed to dry before adding the next. Applying wet products on top of each other can cause blending and caking issues.

Not allowing primer to set – Primer creates a smooth base for makeup application and helps it adhere to skin longer. But skipping the crucial step of allowing primer to fully set before applying foundation can cause makeup slippage and fading. Give primer at least one minute to set before continuing your makeup routine.

Rubbing or touching skin – Repeatedly rubbing, touching, and blotting your face can disturb your makeup layers. This friction can cause the products to lose integrity and wear off quicker. Try to minimize unnecessary contact with the face after makeup application.

Other Longevity Tips

In addition to using the right makeup products and application techniques, there are some lifestyle factors that can help extend the wear of your makeup:

Make sure your skin is well hydrated by drinking plenty of water. Dehydrated skin doesn’t hold onto makeup as well and can cause it to fade faster. Staying hydrated will keep your skin supple and help your makeup last longer (source).

Get enough rest so your skin looks its best. Skin that is well-rested will hold onto makeup better. Fatigued skin tends to absorb makeup faster, causing it to fade quicker (source).

Use a gentle cleanser and moisturizer to prep your skin. Start with a clean canvas and hydrate your skin so makeup glides on smoothly and adheres well. Exfoliate occasionally to slough off any dead skin.

Blot instead of rub to touch up makeup. Use blotting papers or a tissue to lightly dab your face instead of rubbing or smearing your makeup. This helps preserve the coverage.

Avoid extreme face touching and contact throughout the day. The more you touch and disturb your makeup, the faster it will wear off.


Whether you’re lounging poolside or headed to the beach, maintaining your makeup’s longevity is key for avoiding touch-ups and keeping your look fresh. We covered several techniques for waterproof perfection today including limiting oil production on the skin beforehand, properly prepping with primer and setting spray, using waterproof formulas, and applying makeup strategically. Avoid common pitfalls like rubbing eyes, skipping touch-up tools, and choosing poor formulas.

With the right products and techniques, your makeup can withstand splashing, sweating, and humidity for hours. Stay diligent about applying primer, setting makeup, blotting shine, and using waterproof products. Keep emergency makeup tools on hand for quick touch-ups. Follow these tips and tricks for poolside perfection all summer long.

Similar Posts