I Dunked My Face in Water to Test the Best Waterproof Makeup and OMG

You’ve probably tried a water-resistant mascara or a long-lasting lipstick before, but have you ever worn a full face of waterproof makeup…in the water? My guess is no. Because unless you’re an Olympic swimmer lookin’ for a major face beat, or you’re in the throes of Coachella, you’re probably happy with your regular formulas for everyday life. And, honestly, same.

But during a particularly sweaty summer, when I spent every bathroom break adjusting my sad, smudgy eyeliner and tapping the concealer out of my creases, I wondered if there really was something to the whole waterproof thing. But before I radically altered my routine, I needed to be convinced that these formulas would really work. So, I handpicked the top-rated waterproof makeup products on YouTube and Reddit (where the reviews are always brutal and honest) and put them to the very wet test by submerging my face in a bowl full of water.

What I discovered? I’m a Big Fan of waterproof makeup, and now I’m forever on the mission to keep you updated on all the latest and greatest formulas. Okay, on to what you came here for. Drumroll please…

The Best Waterproof Foundations

woman dunking face in water to test makeup

Ruben Chamorro

For the most part, applying a foundation with a waterproof formula is no different than applying your regs foundation. BUT, to make sure that ish sticks, there are tiny tweaks I would suggest trying: For one, switch out your usual makeup primer for a waterproof primer to keep your base locked. And when it comes to blending, make sure to use a damp makeup sponge to get an even application, since most waterproof foundations (at least the ones I tried) have a thicker consistency.

Pro tip: instead of soaking your sponge in water to wet it, douse it in setting spray to further lock in your foundation while you blend it on. In the past, I’ve suggested skipping foundation entirely if you preferred a more natural look. But after doing a little digging, I will fully retract that statement and recommend opting for one of the below lighter or more buildable waterproof foundations for lightly evening out your complexion without feeling like you’re wearing a mask.

Estée Lauder Double Wear Light Soft Matte Hydra Makeup

Light-Coverage Waterproof Foundation

Estée Lauder Double Wear Light Soft Matte Hydra Makeup

Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation

Buildable Coverage Waterproof Foundation

Dior Backstage Face & Body Foundation

MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation

Medium-to-Full Coverage Waterproof Foundation

MAC Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation

Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick

Full-Coverage Waterproof Foundation

Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick

The Best Waterproof Concealers

If you’ve got intense under-eye circles (same) or very noticeable pimples and acne scars (also same), a waterproof concealer will be your new BFF for keeping those spots covered no matter what mother nature throws at your face. My only advice is to work quickly, because these products tend to set fast—and when they do, there’s little you can do to blend them out.

So to apply, dab the concealer under your eyes, then use the warmth from your clean fingers to melt the formula into your skin and make it easier for blend. Another pro hack: If your contour never takes a break—even for a dip in the pool—skip the contour powders and instead grab a waterproof concealer three shades darker than your skin tone to shade in those cheekbones.

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer

Cream Concealer

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer

Kevyn Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer

Concealer Pot

Kevyn Aucoin The Sensual Skin Enhancer

BareMinerals BAREPRO 16-HR Full Coverage Concealer

Stick Concealer

BareMinerals BAREPRO 16-HR Full Coverage Concealer

All Nighter Waterproof Full-Coverage Concealer

Liquid Concealer

All Nighter Waterproof Full-Coverage Concealer

The Best Waterproof Eyeliners

Hair, Face, Hairstyle, Pink, Beauty, Eyebrow, Chin, Lip, Forehead, Eyelash,

Ruben Chamorro

Some things will never make sense to me, like why people would ever choose not to wear waterproof eyeliner every day. Eyes water because that’s what they do, and unless you’re into that cry-face look, I highly recommend trying one—or all—of the budge-proof and smudge-proof eyeliners below.

And if you’re a liquid-liner-till-I-die person, don’t skip this section. You can still use one of these waterproof pencils or gel eyeliners as a DIY waterproof eyeshadow (most of them come in other ~fun~ shades, so we’re not talkin’ an all-over goth lid). Just scribble the eyeliner across your lid, then use a fluffy blending brush to quickly blend it before it sets.

Inglot AMC Eyeliner Gel 77

Waterproof Gel Eyeliner

Inglot AMC Eyeliner Gel 77

amazon.com

Tarte Tarteist Double Take Eyeliner

Waterproof Gel and Liquid Eyeliner

Tarte Tarteist Double Take Eyeliner

Wet n Wild H2O Proof Liquid Eyeliner

Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner

Wet n Wild H2O Proof Liquid Eyeliner

Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil Waterproof Eyeliner

Waterproof Pencil Eyeliner

Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil Waterproof Eyeliner

The Best Waterproof Eyeshadows

Since we’re on the topic of waterproof eyeshadows, let’s discuss. I, personally, think all of the below shadows are worth trying, but if you’re trying to get the most out of a few products—as in, you’re not made of freakin’ money—feel free to get a little creative. Try a waterproof lipstick, a waterproof bronzer, a waterproof blush, or even a waterproof eyebrow powder to shade your eyes, if you don’t feel like buying a whole new set of eyeshadows.

Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Color Paint Shadow

Waterproof Cream Shadow

Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Color Paint Shadow

Nudestix Nude Metallics For Eyes

Waterproof Eyeshadow Pencils

Nudestix Nude Metallics For Eyes

BH Cosmetics Eyelights Waterproof Eye Color

Waterproof Iridescent Eyeshadow

BH Cosmetics Eyelights Waterproof Eye Color

Tom Ford Emotionproof Eye Color

Waterproof Eye Color

Tom Ford Emotionproof Eye Color

The Best Waterproof Mascaras

waterproof makeup

Ruben Chamorro

Ever notice how waterproof mascara helps your eyelashes hold their curl better? That’s because most waterproof formulas contain wax to make it resistant to water, which means you get lashes that actually stay curled until you wash it off. If you have stick-straight eyelashes that no eyelash curler can help, try one of the below waterproof mascaras that will also help to volumize and lengthen without flaking or smudging.

And yes, the most annoying thing about waterproof mascara is how hard it can be to remove. So first, make sure you’re always using an oil cleanser to remove your makeup (no, it won’t break you out—it just dissolves makeup really, really well). Then, next time you reach for your waterproof mascara, try applying it on top of your regular mascara first to make the formula easier to break down later.

Maybelline Lash Stiletto Ultimate Length Waterproof Mascara

Lengthening Mascara

Maybelline Lash Stiletto Ultimate Length Waterproof Mascara

Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara

Volumizing Mascara

Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara

CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Waterproof Mascara

Flake-Free Mascara

CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Waterproof Mascara

Revlon Volumazing Mascara

Smudgeproof Mascara

Revlon Volumazing Mascara

The Best Waterproof Lipsticks

Thanks to the liquid lipstick movement of 2016, waterproof lipsticks aren’t hard to come by these days. But if you want a lip product other than a matte lipstick, try the lip liner or lip stain below—both of which will give you color without any of the dryness. Oh, and while you’re at it, add a little of that stain to the apples of your cheeks and blend it in with a makeup brush for a makeshift waterproof blush. Hey, you don’t stick your head in water a dozen times without learning a thing or two.

Beauty Bakerie Metallic Lip Whip

Waterproof Metallic Lipstick

Beauty Bakerie Metallic Lip Whip

BECCA Ultimate Lip Definer

Waterproof Lip Liner

BECCA Ultimate Lip Definer

Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink Lip Color

Waterproof Liquid Lipstick

Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink Lip Color

Bite Beauty Outburst Longwear Lip Stain

Waterproof Lip Stain

Bite Beauty Outburst Longwear Lip Stain

How to Waterproof Your Normal Makeup

If you’ve found your signature makeup look and don’t want to mess with it, let me teach you how to waterproof and sweat-proof your existing products. First, you need to know about a little magic potion called Aqua Seal, which turns all of your regular powder products into waterproof formulas. Yup. Just mix a little of the Aqua Seal in with a bit of your normal powdered makeup, like eyeshadow or highlighter, apply it like you would a cream shadow, and voi-freakin-. Waterproof and smudgeproof.

To make your usual makeup resistant to all kinds of moisture, use a waterproof eyeshadow primer, setting powder, and setting spray, like the ones below, to lock everything in place.

NYX Professional Makeup Proof It! Waterproof Eyeshadow Primer

Waterproof Shadow Primer

NYX Professional Makeup Proof It! Waterproof Eyeshadow Primer

Catrice Prime & Fine Mattifying Powder Waterproof

Waterproof Powder

Catrice Prime & Fine Mattifying Powder Waterproof

Make Up For Ever Aqua Seal

Waterproof Makeup Converter

Make Up For Ever Aqua Seal

Kryolan 72290 Dermacolor Fixing Spray

Waterproof Setting Spray

Kryolan 72290 Dermacolor Fixing Spray

If you end up trying any of these stellar products, which come 100 percent recommended by *yours truly*, you’re gonna need to grab one of these removers too, or I can’t promise you they’ll ever come off. Sry, just being real.

Brooke Shunatona Brooke Shunatona is a contributing writer for Cosmopolitan.com.

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