Should I wear makeup in hot weather? The 2 reasons to go makeup-free in a heatwave

Charley Webb shows off how she does her foundation

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Makeup is an absolute must for some people, no matter how hot it is. However, it’s difficult to keep your makeup on all day when you’re sweating. Makeup is impractical in the heat and it can also cause breakouts and other health problems. chatted to Health Practitioner and Skin Specialist Tammy Richards from Pure Optical to find out why wearing makeup in the heat is a bad idea.

Brits spend all year waiting for a few weeks of hot weather, but when it comes we all complain that it’s too hot.

The intense sun and heat combination from a heatwave can not only cause sunburn and heatstroke, but it also wreaks havoc on our skin – especially if we wear makeup regularly.

Health Practitioner and Skin Specialist Tammy Richards said: “A heatwave can alter our skin’s natural oil production.

“Exposure to heat naturally means you sweat more frequently than usual, as your body works to cool you down.

“This sweat mixes with the bacteria and oil on your skin, thus causing breakouts.”

So, what happens when you add make-up to the mix? Here are two reasons why you should go makeup-free in a heatwave.


Makeup impacts your skin’s ability to sweat and cool down, which in turn causes breakdowns.

Tammy explained: “Essentially, makeup acts as a cover on your face, forcing the skin to almost suffocate and retain all the oil and sweat which it produces in the heat.

“Wearing lots of makeup is not advised, as it can cause the skin to become congested and built up with bacteria, resulting in more frequent blackheads and breakouts.”

If wearing foundation is unavoidable for you during a heatwave then there are some ways to ensure you can wear it comfortably, without risking breakouts.

Tammy said: “Avoid foundations which have an oil base, as this will only add to the excess oil and sweat which inevitably comes from sweating in the heat.

“Instead, opt for cream or gel-based products, such as tinted moisturises or BB creams.

“Many of these also have a built-in SPF, which will ensure your skin is kept safe from UV rays, which can cause sunburn, premature ageing and even skin cancer.”

Eye infections

Lay off the mascara when it’s hot to avoid developing an eye infection.

Tammy said: “Wearing mascara in a heatwave can result in a build-up of bacteria and an eye infection.

“Mascara needs to be replaced regularly, more regularly than many people realise.

“If you happen to be using an older mascara, one that is over six months old, then bacteria can build up in its container.

“Once you start sweating during the heatwave, the mascara and bacteria can then enter the eye, thus causing risk of infection.

“Make sure you replace your mascara at least once a year, if not more frequently, as the bacteria build-up can result in nasty infections. Also, to avoid panda eyes, opt for a waterproof mascara instead.”

How should I prepare my skin for wearing makeup in a heatwave?

If you absolutely must wear makeup in a heatwave, make sure you’re prepared.

Tammy said: “Exfoliating your face once or twice a week is important, as doing so unclogs pores by getting rid of any excess dirt and oily secretion. This will help in maintaining your skin’s freshness.”

“Begin your makeup routine by cleansing your skin thoroughly to remove any excess dirt and oil which may have built up since the last exfoliation.

“This step cannot be skipped, as this will ensure the makeup goes on smoothly and will sit well on the skin.”

The most important thing to consider before putting your makeup on is sun protection.

Tammy said: “Before applying your foundation straight away opt for a decent SPF layer, to protect your skin from burns, early signs of ageing and skin cancer.

“Makeup, even heavy layers, will not act as a deterrent against the sun, and you may still find yourself with sun-related ailments if you do not include SPF.”

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