Jim Lafferty

6 Lightweight Base Makeup Options You Can Wear To Class


Rehearsal days might not require the full face of makeup (and false lashes) you break out onstage, but that doesn't mean you have to go completely bare, either. Still, slathering on a heavy foundation for class leads to streaks of color running down your face once you start to sweat and clogged pores that quickly turn into breakouts. That's where these lightweight formulas come into play. A mix of BB creams (short for beauty balm) and tinted moisturizers, this list combines the best of both worlds when it comes to skincare and base makeup, helping to even out your skin tone and create a more fresh-faced finish. Plus, they melt right into your skin to work with you while you perfect that triple pirouette.


1. Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream
If you tend to break out, this BB cream will help you cover up existing acne and work to prevent future breakouts while you dance. How? The oil-free formula contains 2% salicylic acid, which is an exfoliating acne-fighting ingredient.

2. Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint
The sheerest of them all, Glossier's breathable formula is cruelty-free, and it's free of common skin irritants like parabens, alcohol and fragrance. The squeezable bottle makes it easy to throw in your bag and apply more with your fingertips throughout the day, too.

3. Dior Diorskin Nude BB Creme
For fair skin tones, this is the ultimate in lightweight coverage. Formulated with mineralized floral water and antioxidants to keep your skin hydrated, the balm also evens out your skintone and leaves behind a slightly illuminated finish.

4. Milk Makeup Sunshine Skin Tint
The rollerball applicator makes this another option that's easy to store in your bag for post-class touch ups—plus, the silver rollerball is cooling after working up a sweat. A blend of avocado, mandarin, grapeseed and olive oils also makes this sheer tint moisturizing.

5. L'Oreal Paris True Match Lumi Cushion Foundation
Packaged in a tiny compact that means there's no chance of a spill in your dance bag, this cushion foundation lets you build up the coverage from a light to medium finish.

6. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
Oil-free so it won't clog up your pores as you're sweating, this classic tinted moisturizer is long-wearing and dermatologist-tested for sensitive skin types.


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Ballet BC dancers Tara Williamson, left, and Darren Devaney in RITE by Emily Molnar. Photo by Chris Randle, Courtesy Ballet BC

Why Do Mixed-Rep Companies Still Rely on Ballet for Company Class?

In a single performance by a mixed-rep company, you might see its shape-shifting dancers performing barefoot, in sneakers and in heels. While such a group may have "ballet" in its name and even a rack of tutus in storage, its current relationship to the art form can be tenuous at best. That disconnect grows wider every year as contemporary choreographers look beyond ballet—if not beyond white Western forms entirely—in search of new inspiration and foundational techniques.

Yet dancers at almost all of the world's leading mixed-rep ensembles take ballet classes before rehearsals and shows. Most companies rarely depart from ballet more than twice a week and some never offer alternative classes.

"The question, 'Why do you take ballet class to prepare you for repertory which is not strictly classical?' has been in the air since Diaghilev's time," says Peter Lewton-Brain, Monaco-based president of the International Association for Dance Medicine & Science. "What you're doing onstage is often not what you're doing in class."

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