4 Game-Changing Makeup Hacks For Oily Eyelids

Never let your precious eyeshadow migrate again.

by Hilary Shepherd
If you have oily eyelids, it can be hard to get eyeshadow & eyeliner to stay in place (especially du...

Out of the many beauty struggles that resurface each summer (ahem, frizzy strands and strawberry skin), an oily complexion might just be a top contender. Even worse? When said grease collects around the eyelid region, quite literally wiping away your perfectly executed cat eyeliner or causing your eyeshadow to crease. Yup, we’re talking about oily eyelids.

While grease-slicked lids aren’t limited to warmer temps, the American Academy of Dermatology notes that humidity is a factor, as well as hormone fluctuations, stress, and... genetics. “Just as some people have really oily T-zones due to having more sebaceous glands in that area, the same applies to one’s eyelid region,” Dr. Dendy Engelman, board-certified cosmetic dermatologist and Mohs surgeon at the Shafer Clinic, tells Bustle. While there’s not much you can do to permanently prevent oily lids (sorry), Engelman says that swiping your eyelids with a tiny bit of alcohol-free witch hazel toner may help mitigate oiliness and set up a smoother canvas to apply primer and eye makeup.

But once you’ve applied your makeup, how can you be sure your oily lids are sufficiently camouflaged throughout the day? Luckily, in addition to using an eyeshadow primer formulated specifically for oily eyelids, there are a few useful tricks to mitigate (or at least conceal) the shininess — and the tools are likely already in your makeup bag. Read on for makeup artist-approved tips for oily eyelids.

Dust Your Lids With Translucent Powder

According to makeup artist Nydia Figueroa, a “super easy” way to conceal oily eyelids is by taking a fluffy eyeshadow brush, dipping it into translucent, pressed powder, and lightly dusting it onto your eyelid region before applying your eye makeup. “I love to use LimeLife By Alcone Perfect Translucent Pressed Powder,” she says. “It has no color and disappears into the skin, so not only does it mattify, it also doesn't cake or crease on the lid.”

Use Long-Lasting & Highly Pigmented Formulas

When you’ve got oily eyelids, be sure to use makeup products that are designed to be long-lasting, says Figueroa. Her holy grail eyeshadow base? M.A.C Cosmetics Pro Longwear Paint Pot ($23), which “lasts 24 hours on the lid and can be worn alone or under an eyeshadow for longevity.” Also, she recommends seeking out products that are fully pigmented, as the color is prone to lasting longer. “A great, long-lasting eyeliner I like to use on oily eyelids is the Be a 10 Be Dramatic Eyeliner.” She adds that it sets in seconds, which is key in ensuring that it won’t migrate on the skin — even on the oiliest of eyelids.

Try Concealer As A Primer

An easy way to mitigate oily eyelids is to use a matte concealer to prime the eyelids for eyeshadow, notes makeup artist and founder of Pink Lipps Cosmetics Kenyata Gant. Her pick? Pink Lipps 5 Star Matte Concealer ($20), which is crease-proof and long-lasting. “Matte concealer eventually sets and dries down, making sure the eyeshadow doesn’t crease,” she says. Also key: ensuring your concealer has oil-control, adds Kirin Bhatty, Catrice Cosmetics ambassador and makeup artist to stars like Jenny Slate and Kiernan Shipka. “I love tapping on a few drops of Catrice Cosmetics Liquid Camouflage High Coverage Concealer on the eyelids with my fingertips,” then setting with a light dusting of powder as a “perfect base to start any eye look on oily eyes,” she says.

Look For “Water-Proof” On The Label

“Choosing long-lasting and waterproof makeup formulas in mascara and eyeliner is key” for helping to mitigate oily lids, says Bhatty. The pro adds that she goes for Catrice Cosmetics 20H Ultra Precision Waterproof Gel Eye Pencil ($5) before topping off an eye look with waterproof mascara to ensure that nothing runs or budges — even in sweltering temps.

Celebrity makeup artist Nick Barose (his clients include Lupita Nyong'o and Kim Cattrall) recommends swiping oily eyelids with a makeup wipe before patting on a liquid eyeshadow like one of Armani Beauty’s Eye Tints ($30).