How to mask-proof your makeup, according to experts

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Mask-proof makeup might seem like an oxymoron to some. When you consider the close contact of fabric on the skin, it’s hard to see how makeup can be transfer-proof with reusable face masks.

But there are ways around it. Aside from mask extenders, there are other ways to mask-proof your makeup. We asked makeup artists Sha Shamsi and Larry Yeo to share their best tips and tricks.

But before we go into that, we asked them to also share their must-knows when it comes to prepping the skin. Sha shares, “Less is more in these maskne times.

The best is to focus on your night routines and keep it light in the day. If you have oily skin, toner is a must. If you have dry skin, go for serums . Don’t over-apply, I can’t emphasise more on this.”

For Larry, the same rings true. “Less is best. That is what I have been rattling on since the start of our compulsory mask-wearing! The mask we wear traps airflow and increases the amount of moisture left behind.

''With this extra layer, we will see an increase of sebum, dead skin cells build up and sweat which will also increase the proliferation of bacteria on the face. Mix right with our skincare ; you get an amazing possibility of clogged pores and breakouts.”

Take a look at six of their recommended tips and tried-and-tested products to keep your makeup mask-proof and transfer-proof.

Trade your primer for sunscreen

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Larry advises, “Use your sunscreen as a primer before you apply the rest of your makeup over. A lot of us in Singapore do not need glowy finish sunscreens, a soft matte finish sunscreen would work better for our weather.”

Look for sunscreens that work perfectly in Singapore’s heat and humidity and double as a priming base to smooth out the skin. Larry’s picks include: Anessa Perfect UV Sunscreen Skincare Milk, $14.90 (20 ml), Laneige White Dew Tone Up Fluid SPF 35 PA++ Moisturiser, $52 (50 ml), Freeplus Mild UV Face Cream, $38 (30 g), and the est UV Protect Serum, $150 (40 g).

Opt for non-waxy concealers that sit to a solid film

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When it comes to concealers, Larry says your best bet is to go for the ones that can set in place. Look for concealers with non-waxy formulas that set to a solid film. That way, they’re more likely to stay in place even under face masks.

Larry’s picks include: MAC Studio Fix 24 Hour Smooth Wear Concealer, $41 (7 ml), Dior Forever Skin Correct Concealer, $63 (11 ml), and Make Up Forever Matte Velvet Skin Concealer, $45 (9 ml)

Apply your foundation immediately after skincare to let it set as long as possible

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Sha recommends applying foundation quickly after your skincare routine. That way, you let it sit for as long as possible before you move on to powdering or setting your base.

Sha’s picks include: Chanel Le Teint Ultra, $98 (30 ml), Dior Backstage Face and Body Foundation, $65 (50 ml), Shu Uemura Unlimited Breathable Lasting Fluid Foundation, $72 (35 ml), and Laura Mercier Flawless Fusion Ultra Longwear Foundation, $80 (30 ml)

Larry’s go-to transfer-resistant foundations are: Nars Soft Matte Complete Foundation, $62 (45 ml), D Program Allerdefense Essence BB Natural, $38.90 (40 ml), Mac Cosmetics Studio Fix Fluid SPF 15 Foundation, $59 (30 ml), Chanel Le Teint Ultra, $98 (30 ml), and Laneige Neo Cushion Matte, $62 (15 g)

Pat and roll

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Another trick Larry shared is to “Pat and roll on with a powder puff of loose powder before sweeping the excess away with a loose powder brush. This extra layer of powder wicks away moisture as well as prevent the mask from rubbing too hard onto the skin.”

Larry’s go-to powders are: By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra-Powder Face Powder, $89 (10 g), It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Silk HD Anti-Aging Micro-Powder, $42 (6.8 g), and KVD Vegan Beauty Lock-It Setting Powder, $51 (19 g)

Choose lip stains and long-wearing lipsticks

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Both Sha and Larry advise in opting for lip stains and long-wearing liquid lipsticks to keep them on all day. Often, it’s lip makeup that transfers first onto our masks so it’s wise to pick the ones that will remain transfer-proof or stay on all day.

Sha’s long-lasting lip picks are: Chanel Rouge Allure Ink Fushion, $52 (6 ml), Fenty Beauty Stunna Lip Paint Longwear Fluid Lip Color, $39 (4 ml), Dior Lip Tattoo, $50 (6 ml), Sephora Cream Lip Stain, $20 (5 ml), and Giorgio Armani Beauty Lip Maestro, $55 (6.6 ml)

Larry’s lip stain picks are Dior Lip Tattoo, $50 (6 ml), and the MAC Shot Of Colour Lip Oil, $39 (2.7 ml). As he shares, “When they go on, they last and last and last and are not drying.”

As for liquid lipsticks, Larry’s favourites are Mac Cosmetics Retro Matte Liquid Lip Colour, $39 (5 ml), Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink, $17.90 (5 ml), L’oreal Paris Infallible Pro-Matte Liquid Lipstick, $19.90 (1.2 g), and Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick, $34 (3 ml). These liquid lipsticks are, “The go-to for those who do not want their lipsticks to move the whole day!”

Keep your makeup in place with a reliable setting spray

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Sha’s tip when it comes to setting sprays is to, “Try spraying before and after makeup to keep it fixed all day.”

Her picks include Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray, $48 (118 ml), Chanel Hydra Beauty Essence, $185 (150 ml), and Caudalie Beauty Elixir, $72 (100 ml)

Larry recommends, “To prolong your makeup, use a makeup fixing spray by these two brands. I love these two due to their formulation which holds the makeup and resists it from melting away.” Make Up For Ever Light Velvet Air Shine-Control Refreshing Setting Spray, $50 (100 ml), and Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Setting Spray, $55 (100 ml)

This article was first published in The Singapore Women's Weekly.