Foundations and humidity don’t mix. Imagine going into steam room with a full face of makeup. Yep, that’s what I am in danger of looking like within an hour of leaving home. As I am sure you know, Hong Kong is a pretty humid place. Sea air and subtropical weather mean that we are practically living in a cloud for most of the year.
Obviously, this is not the optimal weather for hair and makeup. But it does mean that I have been obliged to find the very best products for those days that you could practically wring out.
The ultra-lightweight route is possible, wherein you wear practically nothing on your face, and so is the ultra-alcoholic route, wherein you apply alcohol based primers and setting sprays to dry out your face and makeup, but neither of them are ideal if you actually want to wear makeup, and not wreck your face with ethanol.
I have gathered up a few products that really do hold their own against the mist. Best of all, they don’t look unnaturally matte, even straight after application, but still manage to have a skin-like finish.
Here are my top three choices, in order of increasing coverage.
First up, we have the Benefit Big Easy BB Cream SPF 35, a creamy tinted moisturiser which has a rather bewildering liquid-to-powder texture that feels heavy on the fingers but not at all on the face.
Next up, we have the new launch from Chanel – Les Beiges Healthy Glow Foundation SPF 25, which is more fluid, and very buildable, so that you can position the coverage to be heavier in the areas you need it.
For the highest coverage, we have the Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation SPF 15. For the humid days when I really have a need for coverage*, and my skin is looking pretty ropey, I pretty much always turn to this one. It has a seriously blendable texture, so it still looks natural even with the high pigment level.
Lastly, we have a primer that helps all of them, or your normal foundation for a humidity-fighting boost. The Nars Pro-Prime Pore Refining Primer is oil-free, super lightweight, and works under every single foundation I have tested it with. Smooth it on with your fingers, let it set for a minute or two, then apply your foundation, or if it is the weekend, use it alone.
Fight the shine, people.
– Humid-fighting hair solutions coming soon!
*Also, I would like my husband to realise that this is why I have a need for at least 15 foundations at all times. Different weather on different days, different skin conditions, different moods, and some because I just like them ok so shhhh.