The Trick to Mask-Proof and Transfer-Resistant Makeup Every Time

Non-transfer makeup

That awkward moment when you give someone a hug only to leave makeup on their shirt and hope they won’t notice. Or, you take your mask off only to find all your makeup on your mask, making the time you spent perfecting your look a waste. We’ve all been there, but it ends now. Here’s how you can get a transfer-free finish every time.

Like most things, a transfer-proof makeup look starts with a strong foundation. Not only will the right primer nourish the skin and blur imperfections, it’ll also help extend the life of your makeup. Look for a tacky consistency that’ll give your makeup something to stick to and create a barrier between the skin and makeup.

Pro-tip: Let the primer set for a couple of minutes before applying your makeup.


  • BY TERRY Hyaluronic Hydra Primer
  • Hourglass N28 Primer Serum

Find a Foundation with Major Stay Power

As much as I love a dewy finish, matte foundations—specifically stick and powder formulas—last much longer than dewy, liquid formulas. Once you find the right long-lasting foundation, instead of piling it on, apply it in thin layers. Remember, putting too much product on will only cause more transfer, not avoid it.

Makeup hack: mix your foundation with setting spray as you apply for a guaranteed long-lasting finish. Just add foundation to your brush, then spritz some setting spray on, and work the mixture into your skin quickly—it’ll start drying fast.


  • Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick
  • Sisley-Paris Phyto Teint Eclat Compact
  • UOMA Beauty Say What Weightless Soft Matte Hydrating Foundation

Set It Up

A translucent setting powder will create another barrier between your makeup and your mask or anything else that gets in the way. Plus, it’ll smooth and perfect the complexion for an airbrushed finish without disrupting the makeup underneath.


  • ILIA Soft-Focus Finishing Powder
  • Chantecaille Perfect Blur Finishing Powder

Lock It In

Finally, lock in your look with a lightweight setting spray. That’s right, a setting powder alone isn’t enough—but together, a setting powder and setting spray duo can work wonders to avoid any melting, fading, settling into fine lines, or transferring. This last and final step creates a strong but flexible, breathable film across the skin to keep makeup in place for hours on end.

Pro-tip: Look for a lightweight, waterproof formula that really won’t budge.

Beautylish recommends:

  • Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Setting Spray
  • Hourglass Veil Soft Focus Setting Spray


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