I live in a hot tropical country, and here there are only 2 climates: hot and hotter. 😊 Whether we like it or not, weather and season dictates our fashion choices and beauty routines. It’s harder to look and stay fresh with the scorching heat of summer. I personally prefer to go bare naked on the face because I cannot stand my makeup to melt and turn into a hot mess. The good thing about being accustomed to a tropical climate is that I was pretty much forced to turn up my game against melting makeup. So get summer ready with my summertime makeup tips!

My everyday makeup routine has to stand up against 2 things at all times: sweat and oil. Nothing makes your makeup look stale and tired than sweat and oil. During summer, sweat and oil production are accelerated to scorching degrees. As a daily makeup wearer, I have a couple of tricks up my sleeve so that my makeup stands a chance on all-day freshness.

Try any OR all of my summertime makeup tips below that will guarantee, the only scorching hot specimen this summer, is YOU!

“Protect, Prime, Seal” is Mandatory!

You cannot complain about melting makeup if you haven’t invested in a primer and setting spray. It’s about high-time you hop on the Longwear train. Wearing sunscreen to protect you from the harmful UVA/UVB is not limited to the hot summer months. Sunscreen in this day and age shares the same status as water, air and food.

Not convinced? I wrote a dedicated blog post to tell you everything you need to know about sunscreen.  When it comes to an everyday face sunscreen, you should look for one that’s ultra-light and oil-free like this Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 42.

Shiseido broad spectrum spf

This Shiseido sunscreen absorbs quickly and blends into your skin for a smooth, silky feeling. A lot of people love this product because, when absorbed, the sunscreen does not leave behind a white cast. It has a pleasant, clean scent and wears comfortably all day. The finish leaves your skin looking clean, hydrated and balanced. One of the concerns a lot of people have about the sunscreen is that the bottle is quite small, but the liquid like, near watery texture means that a little will go a long way!

Light Over Full Coverage

Heavy-looking makeup looks do not complement the fun free-spirited vibe of summer. Admit it, when you’re wearing full-on looks, you are more inclined to be conscious that it stays perfect. Where’s the fun in that?

Now is the time to show your skin and let your skin breathe. Skip your heavy coverage foundations and opt for light coverage foundations or tinted moisturizers. Moreover, make sure that you press your makeup base onto your skin so that it lays smoothly and nothing is left unblended. For this purpose, a wet sponge keeps the application smooth and light. If you don’t have your holy grail tinted moisturizer yet, I’d recommend for you to try Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue.

bare minerals complexion rescue

This tinted moisturizer is known to leave skin with a nice dewy and natural glow that is amazing. It is very light and easy to apply, and also buildable up to a medium coverage. You’ll love this product as it blends and color corrects well, and having a lot of shade variations is great compared to other products in this category.

Vibrant Over Neutral

If you’re basic in your choice of tones and prefer neutral skin tone shades, summer is the time to change it up and go bolder with your color choices. Swap your usual peachy nude lipstick to a more vivid shade like coral or maybe an orange. Vibrant hues on your lips or cheeks complement nude fresh skin.

To keep a vibrant and colorful look from looking over-the-top, the trick is to keep the tones monotonous: whatever tones you put on your cheeks, apply a lip color in the same color family. A monotonous colorful look is ultra-chic. If you’re medium-toned like me, peachy-tones are very flattering. During the summer time, I punch it up by wearing deeper peaches (orange with tones of red) on my cheeks and lips. Have you tried Clinique Cheek Pop blushes?

clinique cheek pop

They have a range of vibrant colors that do not look intimidating; rather they offer very natural pops of color. The blushes have a creamy texture that does not look powdery on the skin. A lot of people love this for the pop of color and the “life” it brings! The best part? Not only is it super portable, the color stays on for hours on end!

Liquid Over Pencil

Liquid eye liners, though more challenging to apply and arguably less forgiving to mistakes, will be more long-lasting than kohl pencils. So if you are one of those who always need an eye liner in their everyday look, you have no choice but to practice until lining your eyes do not scare you anymore.

Oily eyelids come out to play with your eye liner game so liquid formulas will be your best bet. So you get the hang of it, line your eyes first with a soft kohl liner to sketch your desired shape and thickness. Once you lay that down, follow it up and seal it with a liquid eye liner. A lot of makeup artists swear by the Stila Stay All-Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner.

stila liquid eye liner

The key benefits of the Stila liquid eye liner is that its waterproof, goes on smoothly with no skipping and can last all day long! These alone are reasons enough why it it Stila’s #1 selling waterproof liquid eye liner.

Radiant Over Matte

Now is the time to bathe in illuminating / shimmering makeup. Nothing looks sexier than a glowing face when the sun hits your face. Summer is perfect for playing up your tan or faking a warm glow by dusting bronzer on your forehead and cheeks. The key is to cop an illuminating bronzer that does not have chunky glitter so that it looks like a natural warm glow.

If you are worried that radiant makeup will make you look like an oil-slick, the trick is using only illuminating products on the outside perimeter of your face and keeping the middle T-zone fairly matte. That’s why it’s best to play with an illuminating bronzer (or blush) because you typically apply them on the sides of your forehead and cheeks.  If you’re still on the market looking for one, the search is over! I highly recommend the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer.

hourglass ambient lighting bronzer

If you are looking for powders that look like a soft veil on top of skin, rather than the usual chawky finish of powders, then the Hourglass Ambient Lighting line is for you. When they expanded the line to include powder bronzers, I jumped on the bandwagon because I am sure to get that very glow-y finish. When you wear this bronzer, your skin will look so luscious, as if you just came back from a beach getaway.

Layer for Long-Wear

Longevity of makeup is key for the modern woman whose days are typically long; our days do not end after our eight-to-five jobs. This has prompted me to elaborate on how to keep your makeup long-lasting in an article. Long-lasting makeup is not only about the products you use, but also about the techniques in applying them.

Layering products ensure double-insurance of longevity: (a) Cream shadow sets pressed eye shadows. (b) Lip liner serves as a base before other lip products. (c) Cream blush intensifies the longevity of a powder blush.

The first product, typically a creamy formula, serves as the primer; while the second product, typically a powder formula, serves as the finisher. Most women have issues in getting their cheek makeup to stay. I’ve heard of a lot of women complain that their cheek makeup disappear by mid-day. My no-fail recommendation is wearing a cream blush like Stila Convertible Color before you apply your powder blush.

stila convertible color

You’ll love the consistency of the Convertible Color blush. It is sheer but with a definite pop of color, and one that stays for quite some time. A lot of people love this product because of how easy it is to use – it can be used with your fingers or a brush, and its formula allows it to blend easily on your skin.

Set Lightly and Sparingly

Powder locks your makeup look in place to ensure that it doesn’t move or melt. When you over do it, powder + humidity is the perfect pair for the infamous “Cake Face,” were your face looks heavily saturated with a thick layer of powder that’s melting off your face. Trust me, not a good look.

Set aside your heavy high coverage powder foundation for now and use a translucent setting powder to set areas where you tend to get oily. Translucent powders are perfect because they don’t add unnecessary coverage and color to your existing makeup. Loose powders are ideal because, compared to pressed powders, they have more oil-controlling properties. You probably have seen this in a lot of my blog posts but this is just a winner – Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder.

laura mercier translucent loose setting powder

Laura Mercier delighted more fans when it recently came out with a deeper toned version of their loose powder. The original shade of the translucent powder is biased to fair to medium toned women. If you are on the deeper spectrum, you are in for a treat. If you use this powder sparringly, you will find that 1 tub can last you at least a year. That’s value for money for you!

Insure Throughout the Day

If you have the habit of wiping off sweat and oil, then you might as well say good bye to makeup. Let’s be realistic here – it’s makeup, not something permanent like a tattoo. If you have sweat sitting on top of your makeup, get a facial tissue and dab (press and lift). In the same manner, if you have oil you need to get rid off, get a blotting sheet and dab (press and lift). By dabbing (versus rubbing or wiping), you blot away the unnecessary sweat and oil without disturbing the makeup underneath.

Do you carry blotting sheets with you in your bag? If you don’t, it’s a very inexpensive way to ensure that your makeup stays fresh. Have you tried NYX blotting paper?

NYX blotting paper

These are very travel friendly and come in packs of 50 oil absorbing sheets. Just like any blotting paper – the key is to remove excess oils quickly. These blotting sheets are the perfect way to quickly mattify that sun-kissed face of yours!


Be it a hot summer day in the city or out on vacation, be sure to dip your toes into any of these tips and soak in the sexy with your summer-proof makeup!

What products/tips do you use to get your summer glow on!? I’d love to heard more about them in the comments below!

If you enjoyed this post or found it useful, share it with a friend!

  1. Great post you have up here and I must  say that this is awesome to see. Seeing that the offer is specifically for people who wants to apply make up in a hot weather or in a summer period. This is really good and I fancy it a lot. This is worth sharing our to everyone. Thanks

    1. Hello Shelley! Yes, it would be lovely if you can share this to your girlfriends. Together, we should stand up against melting and cakey makeup in summer. Haha. Women unite! xx, Bev

  2. Hi Bev, I’m a man, so I won’t need the makeup, but the suncream sure looks interesting and should do it’s job. Is it also only for women, and if yes, do you have a gender neutral recommendation for my next trip to Hawaii?? 😉 I hope next summer I will be able to make the trip, so I want to be well equipped…have a nice day, and thanks for the post!

  3. Hi Bev! You offer a lot of good tips for helping our makeup look fresh even in hot weather. I live in Atlanta and this summer we had over ninety days of 90 to 95-degree heat along with high humidity. That combo will do a number on anybody’s makeup! This summer, it was very difficult to keep makeup looking good and keep it in place. So I appreciate your tips. I’ve bookmarked your site to check back often and to return to read more of your posts. 🙂

    1. Awww hi Colleen! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by. From 2012 to early 2013, I lived in Atlanta GA for work (I’m an IT Consultant). I know what you mean – it’s not HOT-lanta for nothing. 🙂 I’m inspired to write more helpful articles. Give the tips here a go and let me know what you think. xx, Bev

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