I absolutely love summer. However, at the same time there are also 3 things about the humid summer in HK that really irritate me: (i) sweaty people on transportation, (ii) curling hair that can’t stay for 5min, and (iii) smudged make up. Yeh, I am sure, unless you stay in the aircon every second plus you have perfectly well-behaved skin, which I try every day, you know what I mean. Smudged make up is literally the devil in Summer. Oxidized foundation, smudged eyeliner, sticky face, sweat patches, acne spots, and oh my god, white drops that go down your face.
On one hand touching up is so convenient, and rather necessary (I mean you can’t just let it smudge). While on the other hand, the layers of touch up (which involve powder over sweat and the powder again), you and I know not only is it unhygienic, but also really bad for your skin. They will clot your pores and eventually making things even worse.
I have done research, consulted make up artist, basically tried everything, in order to discover the magic spell to the long lasting summer make up. Also in summer one's skin and pores just get magnified a million times, especially under 4K cameras (oh, god). Therefore the following is something I wish someone had told me when I was 16 (when I first started doing make up) :
FYI : My skin is a mixed. In winter, my skin is naturally dry that skin flakes may come off. However in summer when I shoot under the sun, I sweat / turn red easily. I have also experienced a long time with oily skin last year when I had skin allergy.
So here is my Photos-friendly Summer make up products recommendation that last the whole day for all skin-types!
It doesn’t take me to tell you how important sunscreen is. My three criteria for choosing sunscreen are
(i) enough sun protection;
(ii) doesn’t turn white; and
(iii) not oily and suitable for layering make up onto it.
These two are my absolute favs: SHISEIDO Expert Sun Aging Protection Lotion SPF50 WETFORCE; Biore UV AQUA RICH Sunscreen Sunblock Japan Watery Essence SPF50+ PA+++
Base and Foundation
We all know how important a flawless base is for photos. If you have perfect skin then congratulations. However we all know how hard it is to have stable skin especially during that time of the month. So my criteria for foundation are
(i) no oxidation;
(ii) sufficient coverage; and
(iii) feels light.
The first perfect foundation I came across was MakeUpForever Ultra HD. It feels super light, covers flaws and most importantly does not come off at all. I did a test by using tissue to wipe my face after my work out AND nothing came off at all. The blush came off a bit but not the foundation! Plus the price is so reasonable.
When I thought Ultra HD is already the love of my life, I come across the Armani Power Fabric (pair with the Armani UV Master primer for better performance). My god, it’s sooooo good. Perfect coverage, light-weight, no oxidation and most importantly, it controls oil really well. It is the kind of foundation that looks prettier after you heat it up with your body temperature and combines with your natural face oil. It definitely lasts the whole day for me.
(The only flaw, however, is that it doesn’t have many colours available. Luckily I found mine. But if you are thinking of the Armani one, definitely try at the counter first.)
Recently my make up artist also recommended the Charlotte Tilbury light wonder and Hollywood flawless filter to me. My first impression when she tried it on my face is that perfect glow, good texture. Not bad. However, I will have to try for longer before I tell you more about it.
Eyes and Brows
This is probably the most important part to my make up. For brows, I only love Shu Uemura brow sword. The sword shape has made it so simple to draw the Asian type of brow. It also doesn’t come off easily either.
My eyes are naturally oily. Everything smudges on my eye, pencil, crayon, liquid. Trust me I have tried everything. There is only one eyeliner that does stay on my eye - Make Up Forever aqua XL liner extra long lasting waterproof eyeliner. It is waterproof, smudge-proof, oil-proof. For me that is equivalent to being bullet proof. The down side is that it might be a little hard to apply if you are not used to eyeliner that is not soft and smooth.
For mascara, I love all of these. I am not very picky with mascara. My only concern dirty eyes. That's why I always go for the lengthening rather than volume. Recommendation: Benefit BADgal Bang Mascara; Diorshow Pump 'N' Volume mascara
Blush and Highlighting
Don’t underestimate blushes. Especially on camera, features get smoothened out. Having a nice glowy blush can make one look so much more awake and healthy. I don’t have preference for the blush colour, it really depends on my mood. Glowy, longlasting, then that’s fine.
I didn’t use to use highlighters because I thought it doesn’t make a difference at all. Until I try the Charlotte Tilbury film star bronze & glow that gets me like “Wow, wow, what’s that glow on my cheek bones."
Just like every other girl, I have over 40 lipsticks at home, unused. I can’t really recommend lipsticks because, to be fair, all of them perform fairly well. My only concern is whether it is moisturising. That’s all I care honestly. No dry lips, smooth application.
Summer make up that could last long can be such a struggle. A minute ago it was still cold and dry under the aircon; and then all of a sudden it is all sweaty, humid and hot outdoor. For me I don’t usually put finishing powder on if I know I will be indoor the whole day because it tends to dry my skin up. However, I will make the powder as a touch up just in case it gets oily along the day. They are such angels when I have to work full day. My one and only recommendation: Laura Mercier translucent loose setting powder
In order to minimise redness or sweat patches on my face, I like to cool down my face temperature by spraying mist. Not only does the Shu Uemura Skin Perfector mist cool down my face, the smell is so refreshing too. Perfect for the after-lunch touch up - clears the greasy smell too.
Make up remover
Before I finish, I could not finish by a better way than recommending make up removers. Trust me they are as important as any make up, probably the most important thing after all. Especially with the heavy photos-friendly make up, always always remember to remove all make up until your face is completely clean.
If you have sensitive skin, I tried these two make up removers when I were at the same bad situation with you. So don’t worry because you have my back. These two make up removers removes make up really well, very smooth and moisturising. And most importantly, it does not clot your pores at all: Armani prima instant off/face; Charlotte Tilbury multi miracle glow
I have tried the very famous Shu Uemura make up oil but it clots my pores, unfortunately.
Tah-dah you are good! Summer make up can be such a struggle, especially in Hong Kong. I really wish someone had told me all this earlier! Comment below with your recommendations for make up products so that I can try them out!
See more posts from the Summer Series.