Transfer-Proof Makeup

Usually, we look for long-lasting makeup to wear through a long workday. Lately, however, masks are the constant culprit for worn down and messy makeup. Wearing a mask for the few moments you run out to grab a coffee can cause wear down and smudging. It is not a cute look. More importantly, built-up makeup on your mask is a breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria.

So what makeup will last through mask-wearing? You want products that won’t rub off on your mask. We’ve tracked down the products, from foundation to lipstick, that truly withstand a day of on-and-off mask wearing.


Before you apply your makeup, help it grip on your skin with primer. It is the first step that ensures all-day wear. We sometimes recommend hydrating primers or pore-filling primers, but to reduce the wear of your makeup on a mask, a shine control primer helps minimize oil production that would otherwise break down makeup.

NYX Shine Killer (click here) is an amazingly affordable, cruelty-free option that is lightweight but won’t dry out your skin.


Your foundation is the base of all your makeup. If it doesn’t last, neither will blush or bronzer. We love a glowy foundation as much as the next dry-skinned gal, but that will not do if you want something that will hold up.

We recommend the COVERGIRL Trublend Matte Made Foundation (click here). It comes in an abundance of shades and has a natural matte finish—so although it will stay put, it won’t look cakey or dry.


Blush seems to wear down so quickly, even without a mask. If you want a flush that lasts, avoid powder formulas, which sit on top of the skin. Instead, opt for a cream or liquid that mimics the skin’s texture that has a higher chance of staying put.

Em Cosmetics Color Drops Serum Blush (click here) is ideal for this. The formula won’t move on top of other products like concealer or foundation. The drops are super pigmented and melt into the skin so they will hold up throughout a day of wearing a mask.


Highlighter is often applied right where your mask is touching and rubbing your cheekbones. This means it is going to be the first to go. If you opt for a powder, it can easily rub off and look patchy and uneven.

Like blush, opt for something liquid will cling to the skin. The Benefit High Beam Liquid Highlight (click here) is bendable with a soft shimmer, so it will go on evenly. It sticks to the skin so it won’t budge until you want it to.


Lips are the cherry on top of a gorgeous makeup look. Just when glosses came back on the scene, masks became a necessity. Glosses and even cream lipsticks are going to be a no-go when it comes to something that is transfer-proof.

Even lip liners have become so soft that they will wear off. Your best bet with lip color under a mask is a liquid lipstick. These tend to be fully matte. They dry down and don’t leave any color on your coffee mug, which means they won’t wear off on your mask. Unless you eat something oily, these should stick around all day. They even tend to stain the lips.

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink (click here) comes in over 40 flattering shades, from neutral to bright and bold. These can be applied straight from the doe foot applicator for full-on color or tapped onto the lips for a more stained look. No matter your choice, the color will stay put.

Setting Spray

A setting spray that is made to lengthen the wear of your makeup will truly lock it in and keep it from smudging. Based on the title alone, Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray (click here) seems like the gal for this job—and it lives up to the hype. It truly is the best at locking your makeup in place without looking cakey or dry as a powder compact. This will hold on to everything from your base to your lip color and even eye makeup.

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