Are there any places you won’t wear makeup?

I prefer not to wear makeup if I’m going to be outside for a prolonged period of time (hiking, going to the zoo, beach, etc.) or a place where there’s a lot of water and I’ll get wet from it (pool, beach).

— Christine

68 Comments

Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

Comments on this post are closed.
Erica Avatar

I guess I wear some to beach or pool but it really depends. Like mascara or lip balm but not really foundation. The last week by me it was so hot and humid. Nothing really stayed on. Do I risk possible break outs for my vanity. Then I go without. If wearing makeup means I will break out, then no I won’t wear it but sure on most other days I wear at least some makeup.

LindaP Avatar

HA! This is so ME! I will say that as a long-time competitive swimmer, the new formulations of makeup — well, you’ll be amazed at how well they stay on the water. I’ll do an entire hour workout in a chlorinated pool, get out and still have foundation, blush and a tint of lippie on. Granted, it’s not like it’s totally fresh looking, but it’s not totally gone either. I figured that out swimming after work.

So now you can all put a little of this and that on before getting wet. You’re welcome. 🙂

thirteen Avatar

Yeah, any time I’m going swimming or hiking for sure. I also usually don’t bother with makeup on vacation unless I’m traveling for an event (like a wedding). In April I went to Cambodia and it was amazing but excruciatingly hot. (Like, 105F with a “real feel” of 111, that sort of thing. 111 F is 44 C, btw.) Anyway, I can now tell you that some people will wear a full face of makeup in that kind of weather while walking around Angkor Wat, and I am NOT one of them.

Erica Avatar

Same. A full face of makeup in those kind of conditions means a greater chance of me breaking out. I would put my vanity aside and go without. Better for my skin!

Amy Avatar

If I won’t have easy access to touchups over a long period of time, I won’t bother with any base makeup, and I’ll stick to a light balm/stain + trusted mascara situation.

Katherine T. Avatar

Definitely not to bed. I might wear some minimal makeup to the beach but not for intense water activities like snorkeling, water slides, swimming. And if I’m just hanging around the house, sometimes I’ll go bare just to give my skin a break, but I much prefer to have makeup on all the time.

Pearl Avatar

Same as you, Christine – anywhere that I’ll be exerting myself/possibly getting sweaty or where I could get wet. It’s half not wanting to sweat with stuff on my face or eyes, half not wanting to waste good make up I might sweat or splash off.

Marta Avatar

Totally no makeup – if sick or staying at home for cleaning. The only place outside is our summer house – it get’s very lazy there 🙂
Almost none – I might use some spot concealer when to the beach, maybe even to the pool depending on my face that day, Also for longer travelling that would include some sleeping (plane, etc). Just not to look sick when more people are around.
“No makeup makeup” – skiing, holidays, sightseeing, travelling (all day in the car, etc,)

Anne Avatar

I think there are quite a few actually. Definitely any outdoors-y and body-of-water things like you, Christine. Also generally any time it’s hot and I can avoid it XD

I also have been in some situations as a history & anthropology graduate (and just general enthusiast growing up) where I was visiting places of import or of religious significance. Even though none of those places have had to do with my religious background (I’m atheist) I make sure not to wear any makeup. I think it goes along with the overall thing of what would be considered a “respectful” appearance- I wear covered shoulders and higher up my chest, and either pants or if necessary a long-ish skirt, as well as bringing along a scarf in case I should cover my head, and wear appropriate footwear (either covered shoes or no footwear depending). The not wearing makeup in those cases is easy as I’m too busy paying attention to other things like dress, or specific behaviors such as not shaking hands with the opposite sex, not going into specific areas, walking before or behind or next so certain people, etc.

nicole Avatar

i wouldn’t put on makeup if i’m going to exercise. the only exception is my brows – just look too weird if my brows aren’t filled in. #girlwithnobrows

kjh Avatar

Naught but sunscreen for beach, lake, pool. But there are lots of don’t bother with color places, where it’s just concealer and TM.

Julia Avatar

To bed! That’s pretty much the only place I can think of that I “won’t” wear makeup. Beyond that it’s more where I am willing to go without it sometimes- walking the dogs, beach, etc. At least during those activities I can hide behind my big sunglasses ?

Leslie Avatar

Not really lol. For the beach or anywhere I will be sweating a lot, I will at least wear a long-wear foundation, waterproof mascara and a long-wear lip pencil or lip crayon….something that won’t melt in my bag from the heat. I NEVER leave the house without some kind of makeup on my face. Even when I’m at home, I will put on just mascara.

Christina D. Avatar

I absolutely refuse to wear make-up at the gym. I also never wear make-up at the beach or pool or boat, and it constantly amazes me that so many women put on full-faces — complete with foundation — and do their hair!

AB Avatar

Nope. I’ll wear less on days I’ll be outdoors or running errands, but even then I have on my minimum, which is mascara, eyebrow pencil, concealer, neutral eyeshadow and a dab of blush.

Mo Merrell Avatar

I won’t wear makeup when going to the gym, on an off day from work unless I’m going out with friends to dinner or something. I can to the pool if I’m already wearing makeup and considering I don’t like putting my face in any body of water other than my bathtub; whether I wear it or not at the pool or beach depends upon the weather.

Sometimes I won’t wear makeup to work or whenever I’m too tired and just don’t feel like putting any on, I won’t. I sweat really bad in my face (thinking about a surgery to help minimize it) so wearing makeup really is a struggle in mostly heat.

ChynnaBlue Avatar

Yes to this. Summers where I live are triple digits. Today it’s raining; we’re getting a huge break and it will only be 93, but that’s a very humid and sticky 93. If I’m going to be spending any time outdoors, I skip the makeup and just wear sunscreen. I don’t want to have to worry about reapplying sunscreen over makeup.

Stephanie Avatar

I never wear makeup camping, doing outdoor sports like kayaking or snowshoeing, to bed or swimming. I love makeup and everything about it, but I love to play without worrying about smudged liner, etc. I don’t worry about what other’s might think about my naked, tanned, middle aged face.

Fashn Avatar

Never for outdoors, also not usually church since it’s on the weekend when I try not to wear makeup at all. Probably should though, it can get scary when I don’t put make up on.

Ardis Avatar

Probably not a funeral (altho did so when younger), not to bed alone (unless I’m too lazy to take it off before I get into bed) or to a store close to home that is a quick stop in and out.

Lori Avatar

I won’t wear makeup to the beach. What’s the point? I don’t put it on for the gym on the weekends…if I have it on working out during the week it’s because of work.

Connie Avatar

I don’t like to wear any makeup when I’m going to the gym. I just don’t understand why if you will be sweating like crazy on your bike in a spinning class you need makeup so your towel end covered with foundation lol -embarrassing- I mean maybe if you really need a little something to feel confident… like curling your lashes or a little lip balm, or a tad of concealer over a zit and it’s very subtle it’s fine… My humble opinion though

Cassandra Avatar

When I’m on vacation in the Caribbean where it is really hot. The most I would wear is mascara, lipstick, and eyebrow makeup, only because I don’t have any eyebrows..lol

Aeri Avatar

I don’t go outdoors, so things like beach, pool, picnics are N/A to me, but I don’t wear makeup to sleep, or on the days I’m hardcore cleaning the house (Saturdays!). I’m planning on having major dental surgery in a month or so and I don’t plan on makeupping at all that day. (And maybe a couple days thereafter, as I’m likely to have bruising, swelling and probably a fair bit of pain.)

Ellen Avatar

Any time I’m exercising. Cabot stand the thought of makeup on my face while I’m sweating. Yuck. I sweat a lot, so it would be a total waste of makeup anyway! Cannot understand how people wear makeup to the gym!

Ashley Lilland Avatar

I NEVER wear makeup to bed. I was really bad about that in my teens and early twenties, but my skin has changed so much in my late 20s and since I turned 30 that I won’t take the chance. No matter how tired or exhausted I am, the makeup comes off. I even keep micellar water and cotton ovals near my bed for those super late nights.

I also used to wear the lightest bit of mineral makeup to the gym, but again, my skin has changed and I won’t wear any face makeup at all. If I’m feeling really confident, I’ll go totally bare faced, but if I’m having a low confidence day, then I’ll use Benefit’s They’re Real lash primer and do a quick brow fill-in.

Caroline Avatar

I won’t wear makeup while swimming or to bed.
I also don’t wear it to funerals/when paying condolences (visiting) those who have just lost a loved one.

Naomi Avatar

I’m almost always wearing at least mascara and brows, but there are random days where I choose to wear no makeup. so it depends. but on days where my face will seem off I skip the foundation usually, or just opt for a tinted moisturizer rather than a full on “beat face”

Nat Avatar

Outdoors/physical labor, volunteering in general. Because I’m 100% there to sweat and work. Only brows/eyeliner during routine doctor/dentist visits, and nothing at the dermatologist and optometrist (the latter because there’s three machines I have to get my face all over) or surgery.

If my nose is running, no face makeup; if my eyes are watery, too, no eye makeup. If both are an issue, a side-effect is that I absolutely, definitely look sick to everyone else. Mission accomplished!

RMW (Rose) Avatar

Unless I have a high fever, or something detrimentaly wrong with me I wear makeup everyday. Even if I am at the beach or pool. I DON’T go all glamed out, but yes I do wear waterproof foundation, a little bit of waterproof mascara and some SPF lipstick. Some of you might think that I am completely crazy, or that I am afraid of being seen without make-up on. Absolutely Not True. I Am quite comfortable in my own skin, even at the age of 45, 46 at the end of September.

Here’s Why: Wearing make-up is very Beneficial as well as Beautiful. Yes, you Can have BOTH.
Make-up can serve as a protective barrier. Forget the myths about the use of cosmetics! Many people still believe that using foundation can clog pores. NOT TRUE! Washing your face before you go to bed at night and using a good quality makeup shouldn’t clog pores. Simply avoid an oil based foundation. Another Myth: Using makeup everyday can cause premature aging. NOT TRUE! IN FACT, certain types of foundation’s have been known to Fight the aging process. That’s because today’s foundation’s contain sunscreen. Always look for a foundation that offers a minimum sun protection factor of 15. — Additionally, makeup can be beneficial to skin in other ways. For instance, a protective barrier between your delicate skin and the external environment. Not only is foundation useful in protecting against sun damage, it can protect your skin from wind, harsh elements and pollutants. The Sun is responsible for many signs of aging and protecting your face from it’s rays helps keep your skin looking younger, longer! Bit that doesn’t mean you need to slop heavy, sticky sunscreen on your face every morning. You can get excellent day-to-day sun protection from your cosmetics. Photo aging is caused by a Lifetime of sun exposure and that’s Not just the few days you spend at the beach or pool every Summer! Walking your dog, driving to work, sitting in front of a sunny window… Are ALL examples of the different types of sun exposure that you might Not think of protecting yourself against – but over years they Can lead up to wrinkling, leathering and other signs of aging, As Well As Skin Cancer.
Your few lines of defense is first moisturize. Second, is your foundation, and DO Top Off with compressed powder, and use a sponge not a brush. WHY? Because the benefits of powder are twofold. The tiny pigmented talc particles. It contains a certain amount of protection on their own and applying a layer of powder Will Help With BOTH your sunscreen and your moisturizer stay put through the day. Once the sunscreen is off your skin- washed away by perspiration, or your own skin oil’s, or simply wearing off, obviously it’s not there to protect you anymore.
And those Lips!!… Lip’s have almost no melanin, so you Need to protect them! If you don’t want to use lipstick you can use a lip balm with an SPF of 15 or higher.
Cosmetic’s obviously shouldn’t be your main line of defense or your only use of a sun care regimen! You’ll need a heavier, broad spectrum sunscreen that’s waterproof.
SPF 15 – blocks 94% of UVB rays.
SPF 30- blocks 97% of UVB rays.
SPF 45-blocks 98% of UVB rays.
Sunscreens with a higher SPF rating block slightly more UVB rays, but none offer 100%.
~ I just wanted to inform, educate, or just remind all of Us even myself! As I have lost way too many friends, family and parents to some type of Cancer. As with all of Us, know someone who is going through it right now. I looked at this question and took it all the way HOME. It’s a great day to be safe and have fun in the sun, or rake leaves on a brisk afternoon, or build a snowman after a winter wonderland, or just hop around in some spring showers! Regardless of the Season. We should always DO what we can DO to have fun with our loved one’s And stay safe! Xo Temptalia. ?

PerfumedGal Avatar

I wear cosmetics to the gym, beach and the pool. However I would use a tinted moisturiser or BB cream rather than a high coverage foundation. I wouldn’t contour or do a full eye make up look either. Maybe just liner and mascara and a sheer wash of colour on the lid.
I don’t wear it when I’m having laser hair removal treatment on my face or going to bed. However I was married before I stopped reapplying a full face before bed time and jumping up early in the morning to redo the basics. So much effort!

Brittany Avatar

I usually don’t wear any makeup to the pool or beach. I also wouldn’t want to wear makeup to somewhere like the dentist where they’re going to be touching my mouth (I’d be sure to bring lip balm, though! My lips always dry out at the dentist). Going to bed goes without saying, but I do my best to never let myself fall asleep for the night with makeup on.

Tracey E. Avatar

My skin can be very red and blotchy and I always have redness under my eyes, so I almost always wear under eye corrector and the sheerest foundation I can get away with that day. I always wear lipstick or liner/gloss combo.

I don’t wear makeup to bed, when feeling ill, having a really lazy day at home, or if in the hospital (although I hope to always have a lipstick close at hand). Hot and humid weather scales back the base above IF my skintone is even. I wouldn’ wear makeup where it would be inappropriate to the circumstances, a requirement for a diagnostic or procedure or hospital visit.

Susan Dowman Nevling Avatar

Yes, swimming, physical therapy, dermatologist, sometimes to Sephora or Ulta I will only wear partial makeup if I need to get a color match. I will do my eyes but only moisturize and SPF my face.

Bonnie Avatar

I never wear makeup to bed. I don’t wear it on days off unless I have social plans or a date-type thing going on. Going to breakfast and grocery shopping doesn’t count – I do those things on Sunday barefaced. My boyfriend prefers no makeup anyway, that weirdo. I don’t wear it to the gym, but I don’t specifically take it off either, so if it was already on my face, it will still be there. For the beach, and I don’t swim in the ocean, maybe some brows, bronzer, lipstick and shades are all I need. I can even skip the bronzer since I am tan, but I love it. Shades make it nice because you don’t have to think about eyes, and a tan (or bronzer) brings out your eyes anyway if you have to take the shades off.

Michelle Avatar

if I’m going swimming I wouldn’t bother…. or if I’m at home doing yard work and it’s hot out – hate getting melted sweat and mascara in my eye, burns like fire!

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!