We swear by these 5 steps and products to help stop panda eyes


We often find that mascara smudges can be a year-round problem. Whether you’re sweating your makeup off during a night out, an intense workout routine, or even if you are just prone to oily skin and hot flashes, the so-called ‘panda eyes’ from your mascara can happen at any time.

Sometimes, it can feel like you have tried everything to solve the issue – there’s nothing worse than purchasing a different mascara in the hopes that it will help, only for the problem to persist! 

If you find yourself sporting panda eyes more often than you’d like to admit, then don’t worry – we have the perfect solution! Below, we have set out our step-by-step routine to ensure that you won’t get stuck with those awful smudges throughout the day. We have also linked a few of our favourite products, which have become game-changers in our makeup routine: 

Prep your skin

Like all makeup routines, the number one step you cannot afford to miss out on is skincare! Skincare is the unsung hero of makeup – it allows your base to have its best possible canvas, and ensures that your makeup will last beautifully, for as long as possible. Before you start applying any makeup products, ensure that your face is properly prepped with cleanser, toner and moisturiser. Of course, you can apply any extra products that you desire, such as sun cream or serums, but these top three products should never be skipped. By having a solid skincare routine, your makeup will glide on smoothly and will refrain from smudging – and this includes your mascara. Your face is about to be layered up, so make sure it’s ready for it!

Prime it up

Think of face primer as that last added step to your makeup routine! Some people tend to only use a primer if they are going on a night out, or if they know that they are going to be wearing makeup for a long period of time. However, if you are constantly suffering from panda eyes, we would recommend that you make face primer a staple addition to your makeup routine. Not only will it ensure that your base lasts and stays put, but it will also help to prevent mascara smudges around your eyes. You don’t have to break the bank on a primer, either – one of our favourites is the Rimmel London Lasting Finish Primer (RRP €11.49). Trust us, you won’t regret this extra step!

Waterproof is key

Above all else, the best protector against panda eyes is a decent waterproof mascara! If you have never used a waterproof mascara before, now is the time to make the switch. Many mascaras have oil-based ingredients in them, which can subsequently cause them to smudge more easily. Plus, if you already suffer from oily skin, then an oily mascara is a recipe for disaster. A waterproof mascara is the best barrier against getting any of those dreaded smudges. As far as recommendations go, we’re currently loving the Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Waterproof Mascara (RRP €14.49). Give your lashes curl, volume, length, and the umbrella effect!

2 steps to powder 

When we first put this step to the test, we couldn’t believe the difference! Most of us only powder once during our makeup routine, and then continue to occasionally touch up throughout the day, anytime oil begins to peek through. However, when it comes to mascara smudges, your under eye area needs that extra bit of care. Apply powder directly underneath your eyes once you have blended your foundation and concealer, to avoid any creases. Then, as soon as you have completed your eye makeup and your mascara has dried, apply a second coating of powder to your undereyes. This second coat will prevent oil from coming through, and will stop your mascara from slipping. If you're looking for a recommendation, we're obsessed with loose powder – specifically the Laura Mercier Transclucent Loose Setting Powder (RRP €45.00). It is definitely more on the pricier side, but the effect it has is incredible!

Spray and you’re all set

The final step! Just like face primer, we can’t bring ourselves to apply our makeup without finishing it off with some setting spray. However, it is crucial that you use it before you apply any mascara. If you spray your face when the mascara is on your lashes, then the moisture will only encourage your mascara to smudge even more. Instead, spritz your setting spray once all of your base and eye makeup has been applied, but before you have touched your mascara. Then, once the setting spray has settled onto your skin, you can go ahead with mascara, and then powder for a second time as we recommended earlier. If you're on the hunt for a great setting spray, we always recommend the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray (RRP €32.00). Say goodbye to panda eyes!