Makeup and Cycling


At the WomensKit holiday ride this past weekend, I was asked about my makeup. If I ride 4 times a week, it’s a sure bet that at least 2 of those rides is in makeup. I ride frequently on week nights and that means riding in the same makeup I wore to the office. Has this changed my makeup routine? A little. Mostly I’ve gotten smarter about what products I choose. I think we’re beyond disclaimers like, “I’m not high-maintenance but…” or “You don’t have to choose between strong and beautiful” and can instead agree that you can be anywhere on the Face of Makeup continuum as long as you always feel like you stay true to who you are.

Here are some of my tips to wearing makeup on a ride-


No sense in discussing makeup without first tackling proper skincare. This is very individual and recommendations can vary widely. I don’t always wash my face or shower before a ride but I do use toner on my skin before adding anything. I use Aveda Botanical Kinetics day and night but I occasionally use Yes to Tomatoes if I’ve been picking at my face.


Of course, don’t forget the sunscreen. We cleanse, tone, conceal, and cover but yet we let it BURN. It can be hard to find a facial sunscreen that doesn’t make me breakout but I’ve had luck with Tarte (expensive for the small size). For a cheaper option that isn’t too irritating, try Neutrogena Ultra Sheer.

Face Makeup

I find that what I wear to work most days is too much for my rides – it can smudge onto the jersey or gloves, it streaks with tears and it sweats off unevenly. Instead, try a tinted moisturizer or BB cream. Think of it more as a balm for your face.

I have long suffered from dark under eye circles so concealer is a definite must. I swear by Lancôme Correcting Crème in pinky peach. For spot treatment, instead of a foundation or heavy concealer try just the Correcting Crème in green to fade redness and blend. For something less pricey, give Pixi primer a shot.

I always have to remember that daylight exposes my makeup more than my tiny bathroom light so have a light touch and a less-is-always-more attitude.


I avoid eyeshadow while riding because it creases and smudges. If you must, use a primer first. Heard Tarte Clean Slate is waterproof so I may have to switch! I haven’t played with them much but the Maybelline cream shadows dry quickly and stay dry.

I’ve heard arguments 50/50 in the liquid vs. pencil eyeliner debate. I’m not strongly in either camp but my routine involves pencil eyeliner when I ride. It lasts all day at work and is still there on my night ride. I almost exclusively use Urban Decay  eye pencils because they glide on smoothly and are so rich in color. If you just simply cannot go without your cat eye, then e.l.f. eyeliners are for you. Waterproof AND a bargain price.

Finally, mascara is the best facelift. Honest. It brightens and perks like no other product. I choose waterproof when I cycle so I know it stays on, guaranteed. The most trustworthy waterproof mascara is L’Oreal Voluminous but I’ve recently picked up Cover Girl Katy Kat Eye. While I don’t like the Kat Eye wand, I do like the mascara formula and have zero clumps. Saving a few bucks is nice, too.


I love a woman who can rock a good red lip, especially on the bike.  I can’t seem to pull it off, however, so I make do with second best – tinted balms. My favorite is Burt’s Bees Lip Shimmer. A little goes a long way. I stay away from glosses. I hate when my hair sticks to my lips like flies to a trap.

But so often I find myself with cotton-mouth and really just don’t want to bring any more attention to my lips than I need to when I workout. Most rides I carry just a tube of Aquaphor lip balm. In the worst weather, I find Vaseline to be a home remedy. It works for lips, cheeks, nose and chin when the temps and the wind conspire against you.


Have you got a product you can’t live without? Please share in the comments. Personal recommendation is the path that has led me to some of my favorite products so share with us yours.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Create a website or blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: