We have all heard that old saying: the eyes are the windows to the soul. Well, what does it say about your soul if your eye makeup is smudged beyond recognition? I'll admit it, it happens: heat, humidity, sweat, swimming, and small children can seriously smudge even the most meticulously applied eye colors. But as a cosmetologist, I have hope - and help- for a smudge-free future for you and for me. Here are my five best beauty secrets for smudge-free eye makeup.
Avoid oily products. Eye makeup removers can be wonderful - if you choose the right kind. The wrong kind - anything with oil as its base- can prevent your eye makeup from sticking when you want it to stick. Anything like baby oil, almond oil, or an oil based eye makeup remover can leave a residue that makes your next makeup application slippery and smudgy. Also, avoid applying any heavy creams or lotions in your eye area before you apply your eye makeup. That anti-aging cream might be doing double duty as a make-up-smudging cream. As a general rule, look for water based, not oil based products.
Prime. Nothing beats eye primer in the fight against smudging. I know it's an extra step and added product when you are trying to get ready in a hurry, but it is absolutely worth it if you're having trouble keeping your makeup in place. For best results, try a cream primer with a hint of flesh-toned color. It will hide any imperfections in your eye lid skin, such as veins or freckles. If you don't want an extra product cluttering up your bathroom, you can apply your regular foundation over your eyelid and then set it with powder. Keep in mind, though, that these products may not be formulated specifically for the eye area, so use caution.
Layer. Avoid using too much eye product. Instead, start with just a little bit of eye shadow on the side of your brush and gently press it onto your eyelid with the flat side. Don't swipe or paint, as this will cause flecks of shadow to smudge and smear under your eye lids and onto your cheeks. Apply additional layers until you reach the desired intensity.
Line and powder. Try lining your eyes with a waterproof eye pencil. If that doesn't do the trick, a marker-style liner or even liquid liner may work better for you, but they both require a steadier hand and are a bit less forgiving than a pencil. After you've applied your liner, go over it with a matching powder shadow. This will give intensity to your look and help your liner from sliding away. For a softer look, use eye shadow alone as a liner.
Waterproof mascara. Always use waterproof mascara, even if you're not going to be in the water. The formula will help prevent smudging, although it may be more difficult to remove when you are done wearing it. If needed, you can apply one coat of your regular mascara followed by a coat of waterproof mascara for a similar smudge-proofing effect that won't be as difficult to remove.
Above all, avoid touching your eyes. The dirt and oil on your hands will transfer to the skin around your eyes, making it even more prone to smudging. Avoid any products containing oil, and choose powdered and waterproof products whenever possible. These simple steps will help you in your search for smudge-proof eye makeup.