As hemlines get shorter and fabrics thinner (yes, tropical Singapore is just about to enter the driest spell of the year), your beauty regime will need to evolve as well. Here are a couple of fuss-free fixes to some common conundrums to keep you looking hot and feeling cool:
#1 Makeup melting like soft serve in the sun
First things first: if you are living in the tropics and planning to spend a couple of hours outdoors, do invest in fluid formulas such as luminous liquid foundations, BB creams and cushions. Avoid powdery formulas as they can look cakey and streaky when they melt.
When it comes to colour makeup, always go for smudge-proof and sweat-proof stuff. Try Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Colour, $49, and Chanel Le Rouge Crayon De Couleur, $50, (available from July 27) – pigmented lip crayons tend to stay put for longer compared to say, glosses or conventional lippies.
#2 Foundation loses its ‘freshness’ by midday
The same way a sliced apple turns brown, some foundation formulas will ’oxidise’ and look darker and duller after a few hours of application. This is because the pigments react to your natural skin oils, oxygen and moisture in the air. Takeaway: This problem gets worse when it’s as hot and humid as it is here in Singapore.
The solution? Reach for a primer to create a barrier between the foundation and your skin, reduce oxidation and keep your makeup fresher for longer. Bonus: The blurring properties also creates an even canvas for smooth makeup application. Try Laniege’s Skin Veil Base Cushion SPF 14 PA++ in No.40 Light Purple, $48 with one refill, which also boasts brightening and sebum-sopping properties.
#3 ‘Migrating’ brows and mascara
Terrified of wiping your brows and lashes away when dabbing your sweaty forehead? Safeguard them with an extra layer of waterproof film. We’re in love with Browgal’s Clear Eyebrow Gel, $30.50, which is a clear gel that seals in brow products and helps regular mascaras hold out against rain and shine.
#4 Skin is literally parched
The irony is that while the surface of your skin may appear oilier and sweatier, your skin may actually be dehydrated; parched skin overcompensates by producing more sebum. So slip a facial mist such as Sulwhasoo's Hydro-Aid Moisturizing Soothing Mist, $48, into your tote to cool and replenish your skin on-the-go. Infused with ginseng sprout and other calming herbal extracts, this nifty skin-saver promises to soothe sun-damaged and stressed-out skin.
#5 Regular makeup fades in record time
We get it – some of your favourite beauty staples simply don’t come in long-wearing, sweat-proof or weather-proof formulas. And it’s just so impractical to get another set of the same colours, right? If you want your regular makeup to hold out against sauna-like humidity levels, simply spritz on Kat Von D’s Lock-It Setting Mist, $40, or Make Up For Ever’s Mist & Fix, $50, after you’re done with your makeup application. These fixing mists coat your skin with a lightweight and invisible film to lock in makeup and boost its staying power.
#6 Pores are clogged with gunk
Heat and humidity can send your sweat and oil glands into overdrive. This traps dead skin cells, makeup, dirt and impurities on your skin, and clogs up pores in the process. So always double cleanse in the evening, even if you’re only wearing sunscreen. For a high-tech alternative, try Foreo Luna Play Plus, $79, a portable gadget that comes with about 8,000 transdermal sonic pulsations per minute for effortless and thorough daily cleansing.
#7 Limp and deflated locks
Your scalp also produces more sebum in hot weather, which weighs down fine hair and causes it to look limp and flat. Purify your scalp and regulate sebum production with an oil-control shampoo such as Kerastase Specifique Bain Divalent, $41.70, or a leave-in serum such as John Masters Deep Scalp Purifying Serum, $39.
Another simple hack: If you need to head from work to a swanky evening soiree, apply dry shampoo such as Aveda’s Shampure Dry Shampoo, $46, to your hair roots. This removes oily residue and instantly adds volume and texture to your tresses without the need for a salon blow-out.
#8 Fast-fading fragrances
Love effervescent summer fragrances, but not how fast they fade? The trick is not to douse yourself in an offensive amount of perfume, but to layer on a body cleanser, body lotion and fragrance from the same range. Try Mon Guerlain Perfumed Shower Gel, $68; Perfumed Body Lotion, $88, and Eau de Parfum, $98 to $208. This line’s notes include a soft symphony of vanilla, lavender, sambac jasmine and sandalwood. If you can’t find a body lotion from the same range, simply apply unscented body lotion or petroleum jelly before spraying on the fragrance of your choice. These humectants help to bind to the scent molecules and will help to extend the staying power of your fragrance.