How To Put Makeup In The Car Like A Pro

Stay safe AND look cute — the best of both worlds!


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This post is all about everything you need to safely do flawless makeup in the car.

woman doing her makeup in car

We’ve all been there: in a hurry with no time to do makeup at home.

In those moments, the next best option is to do your makeup in the car.

However, as convenient as this is, it has its downsides.

For example, poor lighting in the car can result in not-so-cute makeup. Not to mention, using makeup brushes and other tools puts you at risk of getting hurt in the event of an accident.

Beauty is pain, they say, but that’s taking it too far.

So what do you do? Go makeup free to that important event or put your precious face at risk?

If it seems like a difficult choice, don’t worry. 

We’ve got you!

Below are the best tips for safely and easily doing your makeup in the car.

When can you put makeup on in a car?

Let’s start with the most important concern — safety.

When is the best and safest time to put makeup on in a car?

The answer is this: when the car isn’t moving.

Ideally, this will be when the car is parked, but may also apply when a car is stationary in traffic. However, this is still a risk since accidents can happen even during traffic jams.

Here’s what we recommend:

If you’re the driver, the best bet is to pull into a parking lot and do your makeup there.

We do NOT recommend trying to do your making while driving.

Taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds can have unpredictable and unfortunate consequences. We don’t mean to scare you, but to be real.

The safety of you and your passengers is 1000 times more important than any makeup look.

If you’re a passenger, you have a little more leeway.

Again, it is safest to do your makeup in a parked car. However, if you do choose to do your makeup while someone else is driving, read on to learn how you can do it safely.

How to put makeup in the car (as a passenger):

1. Strap up!

You may be tempted to remove your seatbelt to make doing your makeup a little easier.

Resist the urge!

Whether you’re seated in the front or backseat, it’s important to keep your seat belt on at all times. Not only is it safer in the event of an accident, but also in case of sudden stops and turns.

Besides, your makeup will look so much better when you don’t have to worry about being jostled around!

2. Keep your friends close and your makeup closer

As much as possible, you want to keep your head upright and facing forward while in a moving vehicle. However, this is almost impossible if you constantly have to search for everything you need.

Use a makeup bag to keep all your makeup products together so that you can keep your body in the safest position possible.

As a bonus, this will also help you get your makeup done a lot faster.

3. Warning: no sharp objects allowed!

This is a given. You should never use sharp objects in the car, far less on your face while the car is moving.

This means you should never ever use tweezers, eyelash curlers, mascara, small hard brushes, or any other makeup tool that could potentially hurt you.

Instead, make use of beauty blenders, soft and fluffy brushes, or even your fingers.

Save the ‘dangerous’ tools for when you’re safely parked. (We’ll talk more about that later).

4. Use creams and sticks

Makeup products come in all sorts of forms from liquids to powders to creams. Although there are advantages to all of these, they’re not all suitable for use in (a moving) car.

When doing your makeup in the car, opt for makeup products that come in cream or stick form. While liquids can work for some, they can get messy if you’re not careful.

Related: How To Keep Your Makeup In The Car

Luckily, you can find cream versions of almost every step in the makeup process from foundation to blush. This will help you get your makeup done without having to worry about spilling it all over yourself.

(Been there, done that.)

Not only are creams less messy, but they’re also easier to blend with your fingers, which is even safer than using brushes.

Sticks are travel friendly and can be applied with more control even in a moving vehicle.

5. Red light means GO

As we mentioned earlier, it’s always safest to do your makeup when the car isn’t moving.

However, when you’re in a hurry and there’s no time to stop, taking advantage of red lights or traffic congestion is the smartest move to make.

You can use these moments to do makeup steps that require a little more precision, such as contouring or filling in your eyebrows.

So when it comes to makeup, red light = go!

6. Save the ‘BEST’ for LAST

Our eyes are one of the most precious features on our faces and should be protected at all costs.

Since makeup tools can damage our eyes, avoid doing the most delicate makeup steps – such as applying eyeliner, mascara, or falsies – while in a moving vehicle.

We mentioned this in tip #3: Save your eye makeup for when you can do it safely, such as in the parking lot of your destination, or once you’re inside a building.

Keep those precious eyes safe!

It’ll be difficult to do any makeup without them.

Car Essentials For Applying Makeup In The Car

Whether you’re the driver or passenger, the 4 items below will make makeup application in the car much, much easier.

1. Makeup or Barber Cape

If you’re a little clumsy with your makeup sometimes (it happens to the best of us), you’ll definitely love one of these makeup or barber capes.

They go over your clothing and prevent your outfit from getting stained with your makeup products. This is super handy, particularly if you’re planning to wear white!

2. Lighting

Everyone knows how important good lighting is to a flawless makeup look.

Sadly, depending on the weather, where and when you’re driving and if your car has tinted windows, you won’t always get the best lighting in your car.

This vanity car mirror makes bad lighting an issue of the past.

It has different lighting modes and adjustable brightness, so you can even do your makeup at night!

3. Makeup Bag

This will help you keep your makeup products organized and in one place, just like we mentioned in tip #2.

Not only will this help keep things tidy, but it will also help you do your makeup faster since you won’t need to search frantically for the products you need.

This bestselling makeup bag has 4 compartments so it’ll fit just about everything!

4. Car Cleaning Wipes

As we’ve mentioned a million times, doing makeup in the car can get messy.

Keeping car cleaning wipes close by allows you to tackle any spills on your car’s interior ASAP to prevent ugly stains that require deep cleaning to get off.

These wipes can be used both in and out of your car. They’re tough on stains but won’t harm or damage your hands.


Doing makeup in the car can be a tricky task, but with the right products and techniques, it doesn’t have to be.

By using the tips and tools mentioned in this post, you’ll be able to do your makeup safely and flawlessly while on the go.

With these, you can rest assured that no matter how rushed or chaotic your schedule may get – you’ll always look put together!

But remember, it’s always safest to do your makeup at home or in a parked vehicle.

Safety first! 💁‍♀️

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