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How to Combat Oily Eyelids So Your Makeup Stays in Place

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This article was written by Mi-Anne Chan and repurposed with permission from Refinery29.

If you have oily eyelids, you know that getting makeup to stay in place is a struggle. You probably know the drill all too well by now: wake up, put on your makeup, check your face at noon only to find that you’re rockin’ a serious pair of raccoon eyes—it’s not a pretty sight. But, if it’s any consolation, you’re not alone. We’ve all been there. 

We all create oil on our eyelids, some more than others. “We all have numerous tiny oil glands at the eyelash line to add oil to our tear film,” says Ava Shamban, M.D., dermatologist and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at UCLA. “This oil-water emulsion provides lubrication to the eyes, and the oil prevents the water from evaporating.” 

There may not be a cure-all method that will completely stop our bodies from producing oil, but we can definitely take measures to curb it. We talked to a few industry pros to get the lowdown on some of the best ways to stop slick lids from wreaking havoc on your makeup. Read ahead to learn the secret to a life free of mascara smudges, liner fading, and creased shadows.

Start Off With A Clean Slate
First things first, before you put on your face in the morning, make sure your skin is completely free of any residual makeup (or even makeup remover) from the day before. “You need to make sure everything is totally off your eyes and that you don’t have any oils leftover because that can increase the oiliness,” says makeup artist Elisa Flowers. “You want a clean, fresh start.” Try using Lancôme Bi-Facil Double-Action Eye Makeup Remover ($29, nordstrom.com).

Pick the Right Skincare
After your face is clean, move on to your skin care, but be sure to look at the ingredients in your moisturizers and eye creams. “If the issue is that makeup isn’t staying in place, perhaps the problem is using moisturizers that aren’t fully absorbing,” says Heidi Waldorf, M.D., dermatologist at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital. 

Opt for formulas that you know won’t leave you greasy, like Caudalíe’s Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet. If there are a lot of oils in your moisturizers, it’s likely that they will break down your makeup. Stick to gels and oil-free formulas like Caudalie Vinosource Moisturizing Sorbet ($39, sephora.com) when you’re wearing makeup—and save your oilier creams for nighttime.

Avoid Putting Creams Directly On Your Eyelid
If you can, avoid putting creams on your eyelid or very close to your lash line. The emollient properties in moisturizers and eye creams will cause your makeup to disintegrate. “It’s definitely going to make your makeup get a little crazy,” says makeup artist Katie Mellinger. “You basically broke it down before you put it on.”

Click HERE for other tips for keeping your eye makeup in place from Refinery29!

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