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Some people assume that waterproof makeup is only necessary when heading to the pool or the beach. Those people have never walked four blocks to work in L.A.'s sweltering summer heat with a rising humidity index. I have. In fact, I do so often, which is exactly how I know that waterproof makeup has a role in everyday life. Without it, I'd be crawling into the office with a red, shiny face devoid of makeup because my concealer and mascara would melt off somewhere about two blocks back. That's why, in order to look halfway presentable in heat and humidity, I stock up on all the waterproof basics—including but not limited to mascara, concealer, and lipstick.
But one of the most important products behind a crease-free, smudge-free, and non-melted makeup look has to be setting spray. It keeps the makeup right where it was applied, not smudging down the cheeks or collecting in a dark and streaky mess underneath the eyes. Water-resistant setting sprays work even better (yes, those exist!). Because they're immune to sweat and humidity, they're perfect for people who are prone to melty makeup (like me).
Read on for our picks of the best waterproof setting sprays that offer amazing makeup hold no matter what.
Best Overall: Ben Nye Final Seal Matte Makeup Sealer
This Ben Nye product has received a lot of attention from beauty bloggers since it's one of the few truly water-resistant setting sprays on the market. When it's misted over the skin, it forms a seal that stops sweat and humidity from messing with your makeup (seriously, some people claim it keeps their faces set perfectly for up to eight hours at a time). It's the real deal, though I've heard some reviewers mention that it feels a little heavier and tighter than other setting sprays do. Still, even if the final texture isn't ideal, its insane staying power might make up for it.
Best Alcohol-Free: Blue Marble Waterproof Setting Spray
Here's another waterproof setting spray that's readily available on Amazon. Even though it forms a barrier between your makeup and sweat, humidity, or moisture, it's alcohol-free and safe for sensitive skin. It can be used every single day, though it's strong enough to work on special-effects makeup (so you know it's the real deal).
Best Budget: Covergirl Look Lock Up Setting Spray
Ever since Covergirl went through a huge rebrand, we've been loving the chic black-and-white packaging, like that of this setting spray. It's resistant to sweat, humidity, and heat. It's also infused with cucumber and chamomile for a cooling feeling.
Chamomile is rich in flavonoids, which act as antioxidants to help protect skin from environmental damage.
Best Liquid: Make Up For Ever Aqua Seal
Okay, so this isn't technically a setting spray, but it works to waterproof your makeup all the same. Mix a few drops of this liquid with your powder formula or pencil of choice, and it will instantly become waterproof. How cool is that? You can transform your existing makeup without buying multiple new products.
Best Gel: Illamasqua Sealing Gel
Illamasqua's cult-favorite Sealing Gel works similarly to the aforementioned Make Up For Ever pick. Simply add a drop to any powder formula, and it will transform into a water-resistant paste. Try to apply it quickly (as it dries down rather quickly), and it will stay put all day, despite 90-degree weather with 80% humidity.
Best for Eye Makeup: Trish McEvoy Finish Line Shadow Transformer
If it's just your eye makeup that gives you trouble, look no further than this transparent waterproofing product from Trish McEvoy. Add a drop or two into your favorite eyeshadow, and it becomes a budge-proof and water-resistant eyeliner. That means you can turn almost any eyeshadow into a long-wearing eyeliner. Just think about all the possibilities (and money saved from no longer purchasing multiple liners).