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Why Does My Makeup Come Off Even with Setting Spray?

Why does my makeup come off even with setting spray? I love setting sprays as they help my makeup stay longer while contributing to a more natural look. But sometimes, the makeup may not last even when I use this product.

In this article, let’s dive into why this can happen and what to do to avoid this problem altogether.

How To Set Makeup Without Setting Spray Best Tips!

How Does Makeup Setting Spray Work

Setting sprays contain ingredients that lock in the makeup, protecting it from external factors such as pollution, humidity, oils, and things like that. 

Many setting sprays contain hydrating ingredients that nourish and hydrate your skin, which is vital to keeping your makeup in place for much longer.

Additionally, they are an essential product to help the layers of your makeup to blend in together, providing a natural and polished look.

To have a setting spray to work properly there are some tricks you can do, such as choosing a spray that is adequate for your skin type that contains nourishing ingredients. 

However, if you are still complaining your makeup is coming off, look at why it may be happening to you.

How To Set Makeup Without Setting Spray Best Tips!

Reasons Why Makeup Comes Off Even with Setting Spray

Skipping Skincare Routine

If you don’t wash your face before applying makeup, you don’t get rid of the skin’s natural oils that can get in the way when you add your makeup layers, which can result in a cracked foundation and concealer.

In the same way, make sure that you remove all your makeup before sleeping, as residual makeup left over can produce excess oil and impurities that will clog your pores, making it hard for the makeup to stay in place.

Make sure to adopt a regular skincare routine as it will improve your skin, making it suitable to receive makeup products that will last all day.

Applying Too Much Setting Spray 

When you apply too much setting spray it creates a thick layer that can smudge your makeup. One way to get around it, or if you are unsure how much spray you should use, is just to apply it directly to a beauty sponge or a brush.

Then tap these tools on your face, which will help your makeup stay in place while receiving the product.

Environmental Factors

Pay attention to environmental factors (such as humidity and excess sweetness) that will affect how long your makeup will stay in place. When you sweat too much it creates natural oils that may ruin your makeup and prevent its efficacy, making it vulnerable to smudging or melting away.

You’re using the wrong Moisturizer

Using a moisturizer with oil can cause makeup to slip off.

Moisturizers that contain oils in their compositions may end up dissolving your makeup, causing it to come off eventually. 

A good solution for that is to pick oil-free moisturizers. Look for a lightweight formula that absorbs quickly into the skin without leaving any residue behind.

Moisturizers with SPF can create a barrier that prevents setting spray from working effectively.

Moisturizers with SPF can create a barrier between your skin and the setting spray, that prevents the product from penetrating your skin to lock in your makeup.

To ensure that your setting spray works effectively, use a separate sunscreen before applying your oil-free moisturizer, and then apply your makeup as usual.

You’re using the wrong Foundation & Concealer

Using the wrong foundation and concealer can cause makeup to come off even with setting spray. Pick up products that are non-comedogenic, waterproof (or long-lasting), oil-free and that are suitable for your skin type. 

Your Skin is too Oily or Too Dry

Excess oil on oily skin can cause makeup to slide off easily.

The natural oils produced by the skin mix with the ingredients in makeup, causing it to break down and slide off easily.

To combat this issue, opt for oil-free or mattifying foundation formulas for oily skin types. Use blotting papers to absorb excess oil throughout the day without removing your makeup.

On the other hand, Dry skin suffers from a lack of moisture, which can lead to flakiness. If this is the case, include regular skin exfoliation to remove dead skin cells and create a smooth canvas for your makeup application. 

Not Allowing Moisturizer and Primer to Absorb Properly 

Another reason your makeup may not last as long as you’d like is to allow more time for your moisturizer and primer to absorb correctly. Applying makeup right after moisturizing or priming can mix with the product and slide off more easily. To avoid this problem, wait at least five minutes before applying makeup to your skincare products.

Applying Setting Spray Too Close or Too Far 

Setting spray is essential to any makeup routine because it helps lock in your look for more extended wear. However, misusing it can also lead to problems with staying power. One mistake many people make is spraying too close or far from their faces. To get the best results, hold the bottle about six inches away from your face and mist lightly in a circular motion.

Your Makeup Is Expired

Expiration makeup loses its effectiveness and becomes less pigmented. Down below, you can find the average expiration time for different makeup products:

  • Mascara: 3 months
  • Eyeliner: 6 months to 1 year
  • Foundation: 6 months to 2 years
  • Lipstick: 1 to 2 years
  • Powder products: 1 to 2 years

Always check the packaging for specific information on your products.

Using too much makeup

Your makeup may come off even with setting spray because you’re applying too much makeup. Layering on a thick coat can cause it to slide off easily. Try using a light hand when applying foundation, concealer, and powder. Build up coverage slowly by applying thin layers and blending them well.

Applying more than necessary can cause smudging and wear off easily. Here are some tips to help you apply your makeup and have it lasting way longer:

  1. Clean up your face
  2. Use a primer – primers help create a smooth base for foundation and other products.
  3. Apply thin layers – build up coverage gradually instead of applying thick layers all at once.
  4. Set with powder – use a translucent powder to set your foundation, concealer, and other products in place.
  5. Use waterproof formulas – if you know you’ll be sweating or exposed to water, opt for waterproof formulas that are designed to stay put.
  6. Avoid touching your face – every time you touch your face; you risk smudging your makeup.
  7. Blot excess oil – use blotting papers or a mattifying powder throughout the day to absorb extra oil and prevent shine.

By following these tips and avoiding overloading your skin with products, you can ensure your makeup stays put all day!

Touching Your Face All the Time

We have all experienced it – we spend time perfecting our makeup, only to find that it has disappeared by midday. Even with a setting spray, there are many reasons why makeup can come off throughout the day.

  • Fingers contain natural oils that can break down makeup and cause it to smudge.
  • Fine lines on the face can absorb makeup, making it appear patchy or uneven.
  • Silicone-based setting sprays may not be effective against water or sweat, which can also cause makeup to come off.

Skipping Primer

Skipping primer means missing a crucial step in your makeup routine that sets the stage for everything else. With a good base, your foundation will have something to cling to, except for your natural oils and sweat. 

This means that as soon as you start moving around or touching your face (which we all do unconsciously), the foundation will slip off or transfer onto other surfaces like clothing or phones.

Not blending the Makeup

If you notice that your foundation or concealer is separating or flaking off after a few hours of wear, you might haven’t blended it properly. Make sure to blend your makeup well with the help of a sponge, otherwise, your makeup may get patchy and break off. 

Using the Wrong Tools

Using a tool that doesn’t work well with your product can create a barrier between your skin and makeup. For example, using a sponge to apply powder foundation may work better than a brush because it will absorb more of the product than necessary.

How you use your tools can also affect how long your makeup lasts. Applying too much pressure when blending or using circular motions instead of tapping motions can cause your foundation to move around on your face throughout the day.

Your tools are not sanitised

Dirty makeup brushes can transfer bacteria and oil onto your skin, causing makeup to come off.

When you use dirty brushes on your face, the bacteria and oil from the bristles can transfer onto your skin. This can cause irritation and breakouts that lead to makeup coming off.

To avoid this problem, clean your makeup brushes regularly (at least once a week) and remember to completely dry them before using them again.

How to Fix Separated Makeup on the Face

Use a Hydrating Mist

One of the reasons why makeup separates is because the skin becomes dry throughout the day. A quick fix is using a hydrating mist to refresh and reactivate the makeup. Simply spritz it all over your face and let it dry before reapplying any separated areas.

Apply a Thin Layer of Primer

The primer creates a smooth surface for better adherence and controls excess oil from breaking down your foundation. Apply a thin primer layer to your face before reapplying any separate areas.

Use a Stippling Brush

If your foundation has become patchy or cakey in certain areas, use a stippling brush to blend and smooth out any separated regions. Start by dabbing small amounts of foundation onto the brush and then lightly stipple it onto the skin until it blends seamlessly.

Apply Cream Blush or Highlighter

Powder products like blush or highlighter separate more quickly than cream products. To prevent this from happening, apply cream blush or highlighter on top of separated powder products for better adherence. 


Always prep your skin, choose the right products, apply makeup correctly, and use minimal foundation for a flawless finish that lasts all day.


1. Can I use any setting spray for my skin type?

No, it is essential to choose a setting spray that is suitable for your skin type. If you have oily skin, opt for a mattifying setting spray, while those with dry skin should look for hydrating or dewy mists.

2. How often should I sanitize my makeup tools?

The idea is to sanitize your makeup tools After every use.

3. How much setting spray should I apply?

Use a light mist of setting spray over your entire face from about six inches away after completing all makeup steps – this will help lock in your look.

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