If you experience a bright red face from drinking alcohol, potentially alongside other annoying symptoms, chances are you’re dealing with Asian Glow or Asian Flush. Both of these conditions are the same thing and happen when you drink and cannot break down alcohol properly. So how can you prevent Asian Glow? A simple and fairly inexpensive way to hide the most obvious symptom of Asian Glow is through makeup.
By choosing appropriate makeup products, you can mask the bright red face that is often felt when drinking alcohol.
Plus, did you know that Asian Glow doesn’t just affect Asians? While a high proportion of East Asians (or those of East Asian descent) experience this condition, hence the name, other nationalities can experience it, too. Even Caucaisans can get a red face from alcohol.
Does one glass of wine cause your cheeks to turn bright red? Or does a few sips of beer make you look like a tomato? Here are some of the best makeup options for Asian Glow.
Clinique Redness Solutions Soothing Cleanser (Best anti-redness cleanser)
We all know that Clinique make some incredible products, including those in their Redness Solutions line. But did you know they also have a Soothing Cleanser? It’s pretty obvious why we love this product.
This cleanser is hugely effective while still remaining gentle. The non-drying gel cleans away makeup and impurities without irritating your skin, but also helps calm the appearance of redness, which we love.
It does have mild exfoliation properties, but it’s not enough to cause irritation for those with sensitive skin. You’ll be shocked at how soft and clean your face will be after using this Redness Solutions Soothing Cleanser, even when dealing with Asian Glow!
Your skin can feel really aggitated when experiencing Asian Glow, so it's important to find cleansers like this one that will clean your skin without upsetting it further.
Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base (Best tinted makeup primer)
We couldn’t talk about Clinique’s Redness Solutions product line without mentioning their wonderful Daily Protective Base! This primer is wonderful for hiding facial redness and even comes with SPF 15.
This oil-free makeup primer uses a green tint to correct redness throughout the skin tone, similar to what Reset moisturiser does (which we'll get into later). This primer works wonders underneath your foundation or any makeup products you like to use to give you a solid and non-red base to work with.
Not happy with scents? This primer is 100% fragrance free.
The one downfall is this Daily Protective Base comes in a very small tube, only 40mL worth at Clinique-level prices. However, it certainly does its job.
Estee Lauder Double Wear (Best makeup for all skin tones)
These award-winning makeup will easily stay in place all day while withstanding heat and activity. We love Double Wear because it’s lightweight but still massively effective and comes with SPF 10.
Double Wear also comes in a variety of shades that utilize both your skin’s intensity level and your skin’s undertones. This makes it perfect for getting the best colour for your skin.
First, you’ll need to choose your skin’s intensity level from light to deep. Then, you’ll need to decide on your undertone. This relates to how your bare skin looks.
Does your skin have rosy tones and burns easily in the sun? Then Cool undertones are best for you. Is your skin fairly even all around? A Neutral undertone would be ideal. Does your skin have golden or olive tones and tans easily in the sun? A Warm undertone is perfect.
For those who experience Asian Flush and need the perfect colour to counteract that, the numerous options of shades, intensities and undertones of Double Wear is wonderful.
To make it even easier, you can use this makeup with a handy reusable pump. Hate wasting product? The pump ensures you only get as much product as you need.
Reset Alcohol Redness Corrector (Best anti-redness moisturiser)
Reset Alcohol Redness Corrector is the only moisturiser specifically created for reducing redness from Asian Flush. This moisturiser utilizes a green-tint to counteract facial redness, similar to Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base. In addition to masking a red face from alcohol, Reset also works to cool the skin’s temperature while still remaining gentle enough for all skin types.
Hate having a red face and hot cheeks? Reset can help.
What’s also great about Reset is that it can be used as a daily facial moisturiser, not just when you know you’ll be drinking alcohol and will experience alcohol flushing. Simply add this into your daily skin care routine and you won’t need to worry about hydration, or red facial flushing.
Reset is also effective for all skin tones and skin types, so getting a red face from alcohol is the last thing you'll need to worry about when you're out with friends.
bareMinerals Original Mineral Foundation (Best loose powder foundation)
Don’t like the feel of thick or wet foundation? BareMineral’s has one of the best mineral foundations on the market with eight hour coverage.
Even though it feels lightweight, this foundation can provide full coverage, even for those of us with sensitive skin. It’s made with only five mineral ingredients to help protect your skin’s health.
It’s no surprise that this loose foundation has been a favourite for many for over 20 years, so you know there’s something special here. This mineral foundation also has an SPF 15 which is hugely important for any skincare product.
While we prefer the Original mineral foundation, you can also try out the Matte foundation with 30 different shades. It’s even easier to find the best colour for you, no matter your skin type or skin tone.
Having a strong foundation is vitial when masking red facial flushing from alcohol, and this mineral foundation is a great option.
IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness (Best colour correcting cream)
Hate turning red from alcohol? Bye Bye Redness is a beautiful colour correcting cream that can help drastically reduce facial redness.
This cream uses ingredients like colloidal oatmeal, peptides, aloe and collagen which help to reduce facial redness. Perfect for Asian Glow!
This anti-redness cream is great for all skin tones and is creamy enough that it won’t crack or crease during the day. It can also be worn underneath makeup, or completely on its own. This is a great feature for those who don’t want to wear a lot of makeup, or for men who need anti-redness cream without having to add additional foundation overtop.
What’s surprising is that this cream doesn’t use colour correction but it’s actually beige! However, we've found that green-tints like the ones used in Reset are the most effective for redness, but Bye Bye Redness is still a solid product.
The downside with Bye Bye Redness is the packaging. This cream comes in a jar which can be hard to get the cream out easily, or you end up with way too much.
Why use makeup to hide Asian Glow?
Currently, there is no cure for Asian Glow, or alcohol flush reaction. This reaction is a result of the body being unable to metabolize alcohol properly, so there won’t be an easy fix. Makeup and skincare can be a great option to help reduce or hide the most visible Asian Glow symptom - red facial flushing. Of course it won’t solve the issue entirely, but it can help take your mind off the reaction and allow you to enjoy your night out without worrying about flushing.
Some people recommend using histamine blockers, or antihistamines like Pepcid AC to stop Asian Glow. However, there are side effects to using medications off-label in this way.
Makeup, when chosen right, has no negative side effects.
However, just because you can hide red facial flushing with makeup, it’s important to avoid binge drinking if you deal with this condition. There can be health issues associated with alcohol flush reaction. Of course, makeup won’t be able to stop other symptoms, such as increased heart rate, stuffy nose or headaches. But utlizing makeup can help you enjoy your night out and stop feeling embarassed about getting a red face from alcohol.