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There’s nothing like spending half an hour perfecting your skincare routine — and then your makeup — just to step outside and have it melt off in the summer heat. Sometimes, it feels like no primer in the world could hold up against a 95-degree day in New York City’s humidity. Of course, less makeup in general means that there’s less to pill or melt off, but if you have to step out with a full face before the sun goes down, here are 17 melt-proof beauty products that won’t budge in the summer heat.
There’s no way to keep your makeup on if you’re dealing with a rough canvas of dead skin cells. This exfoliant is made of skin-protecting rice powder that gently buffs away dead skin cells. (It works especially well around the nose.)
I honestly don’t know how Supergoop does it, but simultaneously, this sunscreen has a dewy finish that also acts like a primer. You’re generally supposed to layer sunscreen as the last step in your routine, but this one’s thin and lightweight enough to go on first — and act like a primer for your makeup.
A skin barrier protector at its core, this face cream from cult-favorite brand Dieux lives up to the name. It sinks in quickly and, thanks to its ceramide-rich formula, offers a lit-from-within glow that feels dewy — never sweaty — even on the hottest days.
e.l.f. Oil Control Primer, $8 (Orig. $10)
Credit: e.l.f. Cosmetics
If you’re a primer devotee, this oil-control option from e.l.f. does a great job of keeping makeup — foundation, concealer, eyeshadow — in place. (Maybelline’s Fit Me Matte + Poreless Primer is a close second.)
I’m a huge fan of It Cosmetics’ Your Skin But Better CC Cream, but I like to swap to this one for particularly scorching days.
I like to keep two shades of this on hand — one that’s a touch lighter for under my eyes (Nougatine) and another that matches my skin tone (Custard), so I can sub it in for foundation when I really need to. Hot tip: While Sephora has a very generous return policy, I like to grab the minis when I know I won’t have use for a specific shade longer than a month or two.
While I’d generally recommend a powder blush in the dead of heat, this magical blush goes on clear and color-adjusts into a dewy tint based on your skin tone and pH — and it won’t melt off. I wore it in a hot yoga class, and it didn’t budge.
What good is a cream blush that won’t budge if your contour moves out of place in the heat? This pick from Rihanna’s line comes in five tones and stays where you apply it.
A setting powder is key for long days and longer nights — especially if you plan to be outside in the heat. This one won’t settle into fine lines or make the skin look crepey.
I can’t possibly be the only one who raced her friends in middle school to see who could fill one of these oil-blotting papers up faster, right? (Just us? Middle school is weird.) If you’re out and didn’t bring powder and a brush, these little sheets are your warm-weather savior. Keep a pack in each bag you have in rotation.
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A favorite of Adele’s makeup artist Michael Ashton, this little primer is perfect for under-eyes and lids, especially if you’re trying out a smoky eye on a day with 100% humidity. It’ll keep your shadow from sliding around as well as any liner in place or mascara from transferring.
There aren’t many liquid eyeliners that stay on throughout an entire workout class, but this one can. With its easy-to-apply felt tip and long-lasting formula (even outside of a heatwave), this liner is worth the price.
I’m not big on eye shadow in the summer, but when I need to swipe some on for a long night, these NUDESTIX crayons stay in place.
No matter how many times I try to swap in a different mascara, I end up re-buying this one. It was humidity-tested in clinical trials — and also by me, in the heat of New York City. It won.
It took me a while to come around to makeup-setting spray, but Urban Decay’s formula offers a micro-fine mist that truly acts like hairspray for your face — without the stick. And as someone who’s acne-prone, know that it won’t break you out, either.
REFY Brow Pomade, $20
I love a good eyebrow pencil for normal spring and summer days, but when it’s truly horrid out, it’s time to bring out the big guns. This REFY Brow kit was made for high heat. The angular brush offers precise application, and the cream-based formula won’t move around.
If you enjoyed this story, check out 15 summer basics Lauren Caruso always stocks up on!
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