Literally no one signed up to get oily skin, ever. Somewhere down the line, some of our sebaceous glands decided to overproduce sebum — whether it's due to genetics, hormone changes, or even stress — and it's all been downhill from there. And you know what makes it even worse? When you've got an entire makeup routine planned in your head, but the oil on your face makes your 10-step routine seem pointless, especially since halfway through the day, you know your makeup is going to get absorbed into your skin, is going to pill, or worse, look evidently greasy.
Managing oily skin is a minefield, but hey — we'll be darned if it comes between us and our makeup. We didn't sit through tutorial videos on how to get the perfect glam look for nothing! And we're here to lead you into the perfect makeup routine for oily skin, to make sure that your makeup stays on your face no matter what the temperature outside is, or how much grease your skin is threatening to exude. Read on for the inside scoop on how you should be doing your makeup everyday, if you've got oily skin.
- 1. Switch Up Your Skincare Routine
- 2. Prime-time
- 3. Prep Your Peepers
- 4. Make Sure Your Base Is On Point
- 5. Formulate The Right Way
- 6. Set It Right
- 7. Finishing Touches
- 8. When You're Ready To Leave
1. Switch Up Your Skincare Routine
Skin prep is super important, because let's be real, you can’t create on a bad canvas! First off, you'll need to cleanse your skin (obviously!) and if you're not doing it already, exfoliate. Exfoliating your skin will help you control excess sebum and reduce the appearance of pores. But don't even think for a second that oily skin gives you a free pass when it comes to moisturisation.
Even the oiliest of skins need hydration to prevent sebum glands from going into overdrive and overcompensate by producing more oil. Opt for a gel-based moisturiser to hydrate the skin without leaving it slick and greasy. Don't forget to make this a daily routine, BTW — your skin will be super grateful for it in the future.
The world is divided when it comes to needing primer — you're either team primer all the way, or avoid it like the plague. But if you've got oily skin, what do you do? We suggest acquainting yourself with a primer through and through. Helpful for filling up large pores, opt for a mattifying primer that will help with oily patches on your skin, and also serve as a solid base for all the products you're going to pile on ahead.
Apart from smoothing and blurring all imperfections, applying a primer will also help your makeup last all day. Want to use primer, but don’t want to slather it everywhere? Instead, spot prime areas that need it most — pimples and the T-zone should be good. The matte finish will ensure you don't look shiny at all. Score!
3. Prep Your Peepers
Don't you hate it when it's been 15 seconds since you put on eyeliner or eyeshadow, and it somehow manages to crease? We're right there with you. And no, the concealer trick isn't going to save your lids either. If you've got oily skin, you've got oily lids too.
You need to apply your trusty primer (or get one specifically designed for your eyelids) to ensure max colour payoff and longevity for your eyeshadows. The base creates a perfect canvas for eye shadow and liner while absorbing crease-causing oils throughout the day.
4. Make Sure Your Base Is On Point
Picking the right foundation for your skin type is essential, but it can be tricky to find the right balance if you've got oily skin. We recommend you stick to a powder foundation if you've got extremely oily skin, or a mattifying liquid foundation that'll keep the shine at bay.
Also, the way you apply your base makes all the difference too! Makeup artists also suggest applying foundation with a stippling brush, in quick motions so that the product doesn't get dragged around on your face. Also, a foundation with sheer coverage can prevent your makeup from looking thick and too layered on.
5. Formulate The Right Way
Now that we've talked about using a mattifying foundation, let's look at why a dewy foundation won't work. For oily skin, it's best to avoid anything with a radiant finish, since that can make your skin look overly greasy. If you've been looking to hop onto the radiant skin trend, we've got bad news for you on that front too. It may look great in front of your mirror, but it's going to be a whole other story a couple of hours later.
Also, picking the right formula extends onto the rest of your products too! Steer clear of the 'wet' look, shiny highlighters, and heavy products. Instead, choose matte colours to define the face instead.
Here's a quick guide: if you're someone with oily skin, pick cream and liquid consistencies for your products over powders. Powders can emulsify with natural oils, and leave your face looking messy and streaky. Jellies, and lightweight balms, are some solid options as well.
6. Set It Right
Okay, we know we said no powder in the previous point, but this is the only time we're allowing it! Sweeping on a matte, oil-free powder can make sure that your makeup stays put on your face all day, and that your face doesn't grease or crease up. Plus, if you're going out — take the powder with you. You can touch up your look throughout the day, and rest assured, all the products you've applied aren’t going anywhere.
Apply the mattifying powder on the oiliest parts of your face — most likely your T-zone — and kick back and relax already!
7. Finishing Touches
You want your makeup to stay in place all day, right? Well, finishing with a setting spray will only further help with that. Don't even think for a second that this is an insignificant step, since this also helps ensure that all the products you've applied will sit the right way on your face, instead of looking cakey. Top off your makeup with a spritz of a setting spray, in an 'X' or a 'T' motion to cover all your bases.
8. When You're Ready To Leave
Now that you're all good to go, make sure you've got your hands on a compact kit of blotting papers. While it may seem a little annoying to use, the little oil-soaking sheets can make all the difference when it comes to your face looking greasy all day.
Throughout the day, dab blotting sheets on your face to soak up any excess oil that may have built up on your face, and carry on without a worry!
Written by Nishtha Bhalla on Sep 08, 2021
Nishtha is a freelance writer who loves all things beauty, fashion, culture, and lifestyle. With content covering a variety of topics, she brings a holistic, nuanced perspective to her writing. In her free time, she can be found watching reruns of The Office, reading anything she can get her hands on, and experimenting with astrology.