Take it from the professionals: a top-notch setting powder is a non-negotiable must-have in any makeup kit — especially in the summer when heat and humidity can ruin a makeup look before it’s even done. “Setting your makeup is one of the most important steps of your makeup routine,” New York City makeup artist Delina Medhin tells Allure. “When you set the makeup, it has longevity, because who wants to carry a touch-up kit everywhere?”
Even if you prefer dewy looks over matte ones, setting powder applied strategically (in the T-zone, for example) can absorb excess oil and keep products in place longer, according to Medhin. But oil absorption and longevity aren’t the only things setting powders are good for, according to fellow New York City makeup artist Tommy. “Setting powder is not only used to lock in your makeup but to ‘finish’ the look of makeup — to create a smoother, more poreless, and texture-less surface,” he explains.
Both artists agree that, whether you have oily skin or dry skin, the less-is-more approach is best when it comes to powders. “This gives you more control of the product,” Medhin says. “Place your brush in the powder, then tap it off until it looks like nothing is left on the brush, then keep applying until you get to your desired matte look.” Tommy adds face powder to the forehead, nose, chin, and the sides of the mouth to “help to mitigate any excess shine or oil breakthrough that can lead to a porous look.”
Give these techniques a whirl with the 19 best setting powders listed below, all of which are makeup artist and beauty-editor favorites, and say goodbye to your days of makeup creasing and flashback.
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