The problem: extremely oily and sun-sensitive skin. By oily skin, I mean like Crisco shiny about half an hour after a shower. Blotter papers are a help but I go through them quickly as I will use 5-10 at a time and those are the rice paper with powder versions. The only time my skin was not oily, I was 6 months into a round of Accutane. Regarding sun-sensitive, I’m on the pale but pinkish red side and 15 minutes of sun exposure will turn me into a cherry. To add insult to injury, skin cancer runs in my family so I really need a good sunblock.Compounding the problem: I used BurnOut sunscreen then they changed their formula and it is now both oily and ineffective. Very frustrating. I’ve tried many other top rated brands and none were even close to the effectiveness of the original BurnOut formula.The solution: Blend zinc oxide into my foundation, which works to absorb the oil and block the sun.
– Two pumps of my liquid makeup on my fingers then dip my fingers into the zinc oxide. If I pick up too much zinc oxide this way, I tap my fingers and let some of the powder fall off, which makes it easy to control the ratio of zinc oxide to foundation being used. Note: I use a small container for this purpose so that the zinc oxide doesn’t collect accidental extras such as a small amount of foundation.
– I use my other fingers to blend the foundation and zinc oxide together. It is okay if there are small amounts of white zinc oxide still showing because it will blend when I apply the foundation. Just mix most of it and any clumps.
– Apply foundation as usual. Take care to blend around your hairline well (I push the foundation into my hairline a little with my fingers then apply pressure to my hair using the heels of my hands to do the last bit of ‘blend’, if that makes any sense).
I’ve adjusted the amount of zinc oxide up and down to find the perfect mix for me. If I get too much, I look too pale. If I get too little, my face is oily about 4 hours later. I’ve also tried applying zinc oxide with my powder brush and that worked okay but I was happier with the final result when I blended it into my foundation.
Just oily in the T-zone or have a dry spot? Apply foundation with as little or as much zinc oxide as works for your skin, avoiding the oily or dry area. Then use a separate amount of foundation with a different amount of zinc oxide – more for oily T zone – or less/none for a dry spot. I tend to get a dry spot just under my nose from blowing it all winter so sometimes I use barely any zinc oxide there.
Good to know: Like makeup, zinc oxide is being applied to your face. You will need to remove it daily so that it doesn’t build up. Makeup remover towels work great but I still exfoliate daily. You’ll see proof of the buildup on your fingers after you apply your makeup in the morning so a good handwashing afterward will be necessary.
Final result: I’ve had many compliments on my makeup. 🙂 More importantly, I absolutely love the final result. I can sleep in my makeup after a full day and that is the only time my face starts to look a little dewy.
Products I use (and love!):
– Clarins Skin Illusion liquid foundation (note: Clarins also makes Ever Matte liquid foundation but it looks flat on my skin and looked bad enough for me to throw away the rest of the sample). I can also wear a shade I would consider too dark and lighten it up with the zinc oxide, which is a great thing because Clarins discontinued my favorite shade.
– NYX bronzer Ibiza 02 (technically it is a combo with a pink too but I avoid that side like the pink plague 😉
– Clarins Ever Matte Shine Control Mineral Powder Compact 01 transparent light (gives me a slightly airbrushed but not flat finish)
Zinc oxide is supposed to be inert, as in chemically inactive. However, I am not a chemical engineer by any means but I highly recommend trying this out if you have oily skin. I don’t know what kinds of reactions can occur when mixing different makeups with zinc oxide, which is why I mention the products I’ve used with no drawbacks. This doesn’t mean it will work on the next person but I can say that this is an absolute lifesaver for me.