Finally, no more raccoon eyes.

By Andrea Jordan
July 21, 2020
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I’ve always been skeptical of wearing makeup in the summer, particularly eye makeup. I end up with post-lunchtime raccoon eyes whenever I wear liner, shadow, and even mascara. I have really oily eyelids so all the pigment just melts to create an under-eye dark shadow—not quite the look I want. But in the past few years, there’s been a boom in waterproof makeup formulas that don’t budge, rain or shine. I’m talking about stay-put eyeliner that you have to use elbow grease to remove.

And while I used to be one that only wore makeup on days when I knew I’d be sitting still and not sweating or getting wet, these smudge-proof formulas have convinced me to start applying, even on the hottest day of the year. Now I actually feel comfortable wearing a little makeup to a socially distanced summer soiree or lakeside hangout and no longer need to pretend I'm taking a selfie to see if my makeup is still in place.

If you find yourself feeling less than confident putting on a full face of makeup on a 90-degree day or if you’re spending the afternoon at the pool, fear not. I’m sharing my favorite formulas that truly stand the test of, um, water. Plus, gentle and easy ways to remove them at the end of the night. Ahead, find five waterproof makeup options, and two easy-to-use removers that will make your summer makeup routine much easier.

NYX makeup for eyebrows
Credit: Courtesy of Ulta

Best Brow Pomade

If you love to shape, define, and highlight your arches, this creamy brow pomade not only looks natural, but it will keep your brows on point all day long. It’s super easy to apply thanks to the angled brush and gives brows a natural matte finish. There’s so much to love about this long-wearing vegan brow product.

Buy It: Dip, Shape, Go! Brow Pomade, ($11, Ulta)

Stila liquid lipstick, pink
Credit: Courtesy of Ulta

Best Lipstick

Okay, the truth is, I rarely wear lipstick. But in my experience as a beauty editor, I’ve tested dozens of formulas and this one has major staying power. I recommend it to all my friends. It goes on smoothly like a gloss, but the pigment is rich like a lipstick and since it’s formulated with vitamin E and avocado oil, it doesn’t get sticky or gunky throughout the day.

Buy It: Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick, ($22, Ulta)

LOreal foundation makeup
Credit: Courtesy of Target

Best Liquid Foundation

Remember how I said my beauty editor experience has given me a chance to test countless new formulas? Well, even with the hundreds of foundations that have come my way, this drugstore line remains one of my favorites. No matter how much I sweat or get wet, this lightweight matte foundation stays put. And the color range is quite impressive, too.

Buy It: Infallible 24 Hours Fresh Wear Foundation, ($12, Target)

bottle of pink mascara
Credit: Courtesy of Target

Best Mascara

There isn’t a Maybelline mascara that disappoints, but this is, hands down, the best waterproof one. There are 10 layers of bristles that lift, separate and bulk-up lashes without making them clump together. And since it’s waterproof there’s no running, even if you cry.

Buy It: Lash Sensational Waterproof Mascara, ($7, Target)

elf makeup brand eyeliner
Credit: Courtesy of Ulta

Best Eyeliner

Whether it’s summer or not, one makeup item you never want to smudge is eyeliner. This waterproof liner glides on like butter and locks-in until you’re ready to remove. And since it’s less than $5 a pen, you can buy a few without breaking the bank.

Buy It: Waterproof Eyeliner Pen, ($3, Ulta)

makeup remover wipes
Credit: Courtesy of Target

Best Cleansing Wipes

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, it’s no surprise that these award-winning, cult-favorite makeup wipes made it to my must-have list. They’re one of the only wipes I find that actually leave my face feeling clean and not oily or slimy. But even though they’re gentle on the skin, the formula is strong enough to remove stubborn makeup.

Buy It: Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes, ($5, Target)

liquid makeup remover
Credit: Courtesy of Walgreens

Best Make-Up Remover

I’ve been obsessed with micellar water ever since this French beauty staple came stateside. I mean, this bottle is like liquid gold in my eyes. It’s a 3-in-1 lotion that cleanses, removes makeup, and tones the skin. And you don’t need water so you can use it practically anywhere. It’s also hypoallergenic and non-comedogenic so don’t have to worry about irritations or breakouts.

Buy It: Micellar Lotion Cleansing Water Make-Up Remover, ($18, Walgreens)

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