Chihiro Sunaga reveals her tips on makeup techniques for running

This time, Chihiro Sunaga, who retired last year from activity as a Japanese representative mid-distance runner, talks about makeup techniques for runners.

Thu, May. 16, 2019

TFor female runners, makeup is always a big concern, right? In this issue, Chihiro Sunaga, active in Shiseido Running Club for 10 years, shares makeup techniques for runners.

With Ms. Sunaga’s makeup tips, you can enjoy run and upgrade your beauty!

ADVICEProfessional advice on running

Boost motivation with makeup

I always did my makeup not only for a race but also during training. The reason is that makeup boosts my motivation. For regular training, I normally applied only sunscreen and eyebrows, but when it came to more important training, I used to apply full makeup, quite possibly more thoroughly than when I go out. I think that women change their moods with makeup, so if I’m right, with your makeup, your run can be more enjoyable.

What is essential throughout the year is sunscreen. After joining Shiseido, I began to care more about base makeup. In my school days, I only applied eye makeup, so after I joined Shiseido I was once told that my skin got brighter. You will unexpectedly get a suntan even in a cold season, so I recommend using sunscreen even in winter and protecting your skin.

Apply “long-lasting” makeup when running

The key to my makeup is "full eye makeup". I believe that if you are a professional athlete, it's also important to care about how you look, what kind of impression you would give to other people. So, I used to apply full makeup aiming to look "strong" and "fast".

I usually used powder-type eyebrows, but when I run in a race, I used a liquid-type eyebrow pen such as "ANESSA Perfect Eyebrow". In addition, because eye makeup easily smudges by sweat, I used liquid-type (waterproof) eyeliner instead of pencil.

What you also need to keep in mind is UV protection and sweat-proofing. I talked about sunscreen before, and just as surely, waterproof cosmetics are also a must-have. As for lipstick, I used a colored lip balm because I felt somewhat uncomfortable with lipstick as it can be sticky. Runners breathe through the mouth while running and I thought some uncomfortable feeling would affect my running, so I usually put on lip balm when I was training and running in a race. In wintertime, it’s better to apply foundation lightly because it easily comes off on a hat and neck warmer. I also applied blush lightly as my cheeks get flushed as my body temperature rises.

Recommendations from Ms. Sunaga, winner of the Japan National Championships.

My favorite cosmetic brand is HAKU, which offers a great whitening effect, and I also use MAQuillAGE foundation. In training and races, ANESSA sunscreen and MAQuillAGE foundation were my must-have items. Speaking of sunscreen, I used the spray-type "ANESSA Perfect UV Spray Aqua Booster". The spray can be layered on the makeup, and used for hair too, so I definitely recommend it.

Thanks to Mr. Sunaga for talking about "makeup techniques for running". Below, we introduce the best makeup techniques and useful items for running.


Long-lasting makeup, perfect for a full marathon!

SHere comes your first marathon! You want to make great memories, taking photos of yourself in good shape and wearing nice makeup!

That can be a problem in the demanding age of social media, right? Makeup smudging during a workout is an endless problem for us sport girls. It’s no wonder if you give up saying, "I’m totally fine without makeup if it gives nothing but smudges!” But today, you can say goodbye to such concerns. We introduce "makeup techniques that can last for a full marathon" to fulfill your wish.

The basis of makeup is skincare, after all! What is the proper way to wash the face and also prevent dryness?

No matter how good the cosmetics and makeup techniques are, makeup will be ruined if applied over oily or dirty skin. First of all, remove oils and dirt thoroughly with facewash as they are a cause of makeup smudging. The key here is washing the face thoroughly and gently so that the skin does not move. You may feel unsure if it really removes all the dirt and oils. However, do not massage strongly as it could possibly cause a skin problem. After rinsing with slightly warm water, apply cold water for about 5 seconds to finish. Cold water tightens and refreshes your skin, preventing dryness.

So simple! The right application of lotion makes a difference

By patting on lotion with cotton puffs, oils in the pores will be pressured, resulting in a delay in secretion. By controlling these oils, which are a cause of makeup smudging, makeup will last significantly longer. The key is to pat gently from the outside of the face towards the inside with an image of suppressing oils hidden in the pores.

Sunscreen is a must!
Choose high-SPF products

UV protection is essential when playing outdoor sports as you are exposed to UV light for a long time. Make sure that you also apply sunscreen, as UV protective foundations are not sufficient. You will be safe if you choose a waterproof sunscreen described as "SPF 50+” and PA ++++".

Perfect UV Sunscreen Mild Milk

Skincare with strongest* UV blocking effect
Silky milky texture with extra gentle formulation. It can be also used for babies and kids.
It gets stronger in UV protection upon contact with sweat and water. The strongest* UV protection. It can be easily rinsed off with soap and used on both face and body.

Choosing a good foundation play a crucial role

It is no exaggeration to say that choosing the right foundation plays a crucial role to prevent makeup smudging. So, we introduce recommended foundations that are highly water- and oil-proof, and how to use them.

▼Dual Liquid foundation

This is recommended for those who like a light, refreshing texture and transparent finish. It tends to be uneven on application, but if applied and smoothed by tapping with a sponge, it gives a natural finish as if it were bare skin.

Perfect UV Liquid N

Strong against sweat, oils and water with long-lasting UV cut effect
With its high coverage and great color variations, you can find your favorite one. It is strong against sweat, water and oils produced by the skin, and even if you wipe off the sweat with a towel, it won’t smudge, keeping a beautiful look. It rarely comes off onto clothes, which is another merit of this product.

▼Two-way powder foundation

If you like matte finish, your best solution is this two-way powder foundation that can be used with or without water. By applying the foundation using a sponge with water, it will be sweat- and water-resistant, so it is very helpful when playing sports. Slightly dampen a sponge then layer on the foundation a few times, adjusting the thickness to achieve a perfect finish.

Perfect UV Pact N

SWaterproof powdery foundation that is strong against sweat, oils and water, with great UV protection
This item cuts both ultraviolet A and B rays. It repels water with great breathability so it keeps a beautiful look even when swimming.
It creates a bright skin color without dullness under sunlight.
It can be used with or without water.

If you just want a quick solution...

BB cream is exceptionally easy to use as you can finish base makeup and foundation in one go. Thanks to its high coverage and smooth silky finish, this is a perfect item for sports lovers. It also has great UV protection, which sounds perfect, doesn’t it?

Perfect BB Base Beauty Booster

Even stronger sweatproof effect and smooth long-lasting BB cream
Prevents smudging, and naturally covers spots and pores. Its silky touch remains forever. Formulated with "beauty booster technology", which creates more beautiful skin as it comes in contact with sweat and water, perfect for sports and leisure.

Don’t forget about finishing powder

Make sure to finish your makeup with face powder. Powder works to improve adhesion with the foundation and prevents smudging, and is essential if you want to keep makeup smudge-free while completing a full marathon.

Perfect Smooth Mist

Smooth texture continues even after sweating. Comfortable powdery mist
PThis mist brightens your skin and improves transparency in one go. It prevents makeup smudge and refreshes oily skin instantly.


Shiseido Running Club

Started focusing on track and field from junior high school. Joined Shiseido in 2009. As a Japanese representative mid-distance runner, she holds titles in the 1,500 m category in the All Japan Industrial Athletics Championship and the National Sports Festival of Japan in Nagasaki in 2014, as well as in the Japan National Championships in 2015. She concluded a 10-year running career at the All Japan Industrial Teams Women’s Ekiden in 2018, and retired from competition. From now on, she works at the Running Station of the Shiseido Global Innovation Center (S/PARK), which opened in April 2019, and dreams of passing down her own track experience to amateur runners.