Try These: Setting Powders

When I first started working in the beauty industry, loose powders weren’t nearly as popular as they are today. The majority of them were cheap, cakey, smelly and messy. However, formulas have come a long way since then, now with micro-fine powders that are truly universal and silky, barely-there textures that lock makeup in for the long run.

Combine these beautiful new formulas with a sprinkle of Instagram-makeup influence and “baking” is now one of the hottest trend in makeup. Although this technique has been widely used by makeup artists and performing professionals for years, it has now become a regular part of many beauty lovers’ daily makeup routines.

Whether you’re into the baking trend or not, it’s no secret that everyone should have a good loose powder in their makeup bag to blur imperfections, erase pores, mattify skin and set makeup for all-day wear. I’ve rounded up 12 of the best ones to try, no matter what your budget is.

  • 1 of 12 Laura Mercier Transluscent Loose Setting Powder
  • Laura Mercier Transluscent Loose Setting Powder
  • Laura Mercier Transluscent Loose Setting Powder, $38

    Arguably the most iconic setting powder of them all, this is the formula of choice for many makeup artists, YouTubers and beauty editors around the world. I typically reach for this one on a daily basis to set my t-zone and undereye concealer (and don’t feel complete until I do)!

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 2 of 12 Cover FX Perfect Setting Powder
  • Cover FX Perfect Setting Powder
  • Cover FX Perfect Setting Powder, $35

    This talc-free powder goes on completely translucent and leaves skin with a soft-focus, airbrushed finish. It’s particularly amazing for anyone with normal-to-dry skin or those with sensitive skin, thanks to the fragrance-free, mineral oil-free formula.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 3 of 12 NYX Studio Finishing Powder
  • NYX Studio Finishing Powder
  • NYX Studio Finishing Powder, $9

    Professional quality with a lighter price tag! This silica finishing powder will leave you camera-ready in a single sweep without needing a Snapchat filter (you know, that second one that makes skin look amazing).

    Available online at ulta.com.

  • 4 of 12 Stellar Cosmic Face Powder
  • Stellar Cosmic Face Powder
  • Stellar Cosmic Face Powder, $30

    This super silky formula is perfect for setting foundation and concealer for all-day wear without settling into fine lines. The powder comes in a variety of shades to flatter a variety of skintones and undertones.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 5 of 12 Giorgio Armani Micro-Fil Loose Powder
  • Giorgio Armani Micro-Fil Loose Powder
  • Giorgio Armani Micro-Fil Loose Powder, $45

    A luxurious touch for a velvety smooth complexion—this powder absorbs oil and leaves skin with a touch of radiance for a healthy-looking glow.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 6 of 12 Kat Von D Lock-It Setting Powder
  • Kat Von D Lock-It Setting Powder
  • Kat Von D Lock-It Setting Powder, $30

    One of my personal favourites for locking in makeup (as the name suggests) for all day—and night—wear. The formula uses ultra-lightweight mica powders to leave skin super smooth and refined. It doesn’t cake up on the skin and holds up beautifully throughout the day.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 7 of 12 NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder
  • NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder
  • NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder, $37

    This powder makes skin look luminous in any light thanks to NARS’ innovative Light Reflecting Complex technology (and likely a hint of voodoo magic, in my opinion). The light-diffusing particles hide pores, lines and texture for an ultra-smooth look even under harsh lighting.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 8 of 12 Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Filtered Light Setting Powder
  • Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Filtered Light Setting Powder
  • Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Filtered Light Setting Powder, $34

    Micronized light-reflecting particles are infused into this setting powder for added radiance. This one is great for setting undereye makeup or adding a natural-looking glow to the entire complexion.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 9 of 12 Clé de Peau Beauté Transluscent Loose Powder
  • Clé de Peau Beauté Transluscent Loose Powder
  • Clé de Peau Beauté Transluscent Loose Powder, $105

    If angels set their makeup with powder, it would be this one for sure. Like a soft veil on the skin, this delicate powder leaves skin with a perfectly smooth canvas. It’s a luxury item with a price tag to match, but who can put a price on heavenly skin?

    Available online at nordstrom.com.

  • 10 of 12 Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Microfinishing Loose Powder
  • Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Microfinishing Loose Powder
  • Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Microfinishing Loose Powder, $36

    A tried and true must-have for professional makeup artists everywhere! This formula is infused with both silica and silicone particles to give a light-diffusing, mattifying and pore-minimizing effect that is truly undetectable (even with 4K cameras)! Plus, the mess-free jar is a much-appreciated packaging option for loose powder.

    Available online at sephora.com.

  • 11 of 12 Rodial Baking Powder
  • Rodial Baking Powder
  • Rodial Baking Powder, $48

    This formula is truly designed to lock in makeup for a flawless finish (read no creasing, caking or fading) thanks to the smooth, spherical powders and light-reflecting pigments. The slight tint gives it a brightening finish that gives those Instagram selfies that added pop of radiance.

    Available online at rodial.co.uk.

  • 12 of 12 Dermablend Professional Loose Setting Powder
  • Dermablend Professional Loose Setting Powder
  • Dermablend Professional Loose Setting Powder, $27

    When makeup meltdown needs to be avoided at all cost (especially when using corrective makeup for face and body, as the brand is best known for), it’s time to bring out the big guns. This powder locks in makeup for 16 hours of transfer-resistent wear so you can feel confident your makeup will look fabulous from morning until night.

    Available online at sephora.com.

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