I always assumed makeup that claimed to be waterproof was also oil-proof. So I would spend tons of money trying all the latest waterproof mascaras and eyeliners in hopes that I’d find a formula that didn’t cause smudging under my eyes. Finally, I realized oil-proof makeup does not and cannot exist. Oils are actually amazing cleansers that easily melt away makeup and break up even the most bulletproof eyeliner and mascara formulas.
This is around the time I was introduced to “sandbagging,” which was made popular by Kim Kardashian and her makeup artist, Mario Dedivanovic. They swear by this technique to achieve Kim’s famous flawless and ever-fresh look. It involves forming a barrier around an area to prevent makeup from bleeding or smudging. It’s very similar to the “baking” technique, except it’s not meant to highlight. Rather, it works to keep makeup from melting away onto other areas of your face (i.e. keeping eyeliner from smudging onto your under eyes). The name is derived from real sandbags, which people use as barriers around an area to help prevent flooding.
How to Sandbag Your Makeup
What you’ll need:
- Your favorite loose translucent powder (mine is the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder)
- A makeup wedge (you can find these at any drugstore or Ulta)
- A fluffy brush
- After applying all your makeup (foundation, concealer, mascara, eyeliner, etc.), use the smaller side of the wedge to dip into your translucent powder.
- Using a heavy hand, pat the powder gently across your under eye region, going as close to the waterline as possible. You’ll want to see a wall of powder, as using too little powder won’t be as effective at soaking up all the oils. Also, don’t travel too far down your under eye, unless you want to make this a 2-in-1 sandbagging and baking technique! I’m not a huge fan of baking under my eyes, because it tends to make that area look too dry and powdery. If you’re like me, stay close to your waterline and you won’t have anything to worry about!
- Another area people like to sandbag is around their mouths to prevent lipstick from bleeding. Use the thicker side of the wedge to dip into your translucent powder again and pat all around your lips after applying lipstick.
- Leave the powder on for at least 5-10 minutes. You really want to leave it on for a while, as this will allow the powder to lock into place. This is around the time I like to do my hair or flip through a magazine.
- Knock the powder off using a fluffy brush and you’re ready to go!
Now, I sandbag every time I wear eyeliner or mascara. It’s the only thing that actually helps minimize the smudging from eye makeup for me. On especially hot and humid days, my oils will still break through and I’ll see some black under my eyes by the end of the day. However, it’s significantly less than what I’ve had to deal with before incorporating this technique into my routine. If you have oily lids and are desperate to rid yourself of smudged eyeliner and mascara, try this out!