What do you look for in a good setting powder?

I want something that helps to lock my foundation in place for a little longer than it would last on its own but isn’t so powdery that it either lightens (or darkens) my base nor makes it look so matte and cakey. It should be very translucent/sheer with a very finely-milled texture.

— Christine
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!
Explore Temptalia

We're here to help you make better beauty purchases that you'll enjoy and love! We recommend signing up to take advantage of personalized features like tracking products you own, viewing dupes that you already have, and more!

Here are some useful resources for you:

Compare Any Two

Curious how two shades compare to each other? Type in the shades below to get instant side-by-side swatches!


Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

Comments on this post are closed.
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

I like a loose powder that is very fine, but not so fine that it creates a big cloud when you open the lid (I had to get rid of one recently for that very reason). It should be translucent and matte, and able to set my powder without looking cakey, and should last a long time. All that said, my everyday go-to is RCMA No Color Powder. When I do makeup to go out at night, I use Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Powder. I carry a KVD Lock-It Blotting Powder compact with me just in case I need to touch up a shiny nose or chin.

Something that adds to the longevity of my foundation and is matte/satin in texture. I have very oily skin so I stay away from anything glittery – especially a powder that would be going over my entire face.

My current fave is the RCMA no color, but that’s more due to the fact that it’s so cheap (and I use so much of it!) that anything else would break the bank.

I would love to find a setting powder that makes me look airbrushed instead of cakey on my dry skin. Right now I’m using Too Face sweet peach powder only in my tzone. I would also love to find a powder that I could use to bake my undereye area to help conceal eyebags.

Having recently received my RCMA Translucent Powder, but oddly not yet used it, I’m hoping that this is the ONE. I did put some on the back of my hand to get an idea of its texture. So, here’s hoping that as the heat and humidity increase, that this very finely milled, non-flat matte powder that doesn’t have that glaring white cast of all the HD powders out here, will do it. My skin has some texture to it from large pores, deep expression/smile lines and the beginnings of some fine lines/ wrinkles. It’s also *still* combination skin, that is prone to breakouts. And then there’s the actual skintone. Therefore, I require something that gives my t-zone extra time without oil breaking up my foundation and making it pool up in my pores and sides of my nose, but doesn’t accentuate any fine lines. No white cast left behind, either!

I want a long-lasting, translucent, matte loose powder that will set my foundation and help keep my face from looking too shiny. It can’t turn cakey around my nose. My current favorites are e.l.f. HD Powder in Sheer and bareMinerals Mineral Veil in Original.

I love how a good setting powder adds to the look of creating beautiful skin. I like it to allow other powder products to glide on smoother. And it does make foundation last.

After trying a gazillion, my ride or die is Sisley Poudre Libre. I use the color Isiree. No color change to foundation. Lovely fine, fine fine texture. It’s something special, IMO. I have told this before, but it bears repeating…

I bought the current container I have in July 2016. I have used it every damn day I have worn foundation since then. I will make it to July 2018 and beyond. I have never once felt the need to look for something new, or feel the Sisley was lacking in any way. So while the $95 outlay hurt at the time, it was worth every cent. Saved me money in the end.

I will also say the game changer is applying a setting powder per Wayne Goss. Press and roll, people! 🙂 THEN use a powder brush to knock off excess. Makes a huge difference. https://youtu.be/-9lyg9DNfsY

I’ve stopped using a setting powder on a daily basis as I’ve noticed that it is drying my face after a couple of hours and it takes out all the moisture that’s left in the foundation. I guess that my skin has changed in the past year. So, during the winter and early spring I used only the foundation (KGD Aqua or IT CC Cream). Lately I’ve been using the Bare Minerals Original Loose Powder Foundation SPF15. As the summer is finally here, I will revert to the Juice Beauty CC Cream SPF 30 in Desert Glow and I will try as well the newly discovered Becca Hydra-Mist Powder.
I always keep with me a compact of the Clinique Stay Matte Universal Blotting Powder in case I deal with a shiny T-zone (in summer only when it’s very hot).

Something to lock in my “face” and matifye as I have an oily T zone. Right now I am using Ben Nye and it lasts for the day on me.

In a good setting powder I look for a translucent finish that will keep my foundation in place for longer. I prefer a mattish finish, nothing sparkly or shimmery.
I quite like the Rimmel Ultra setting translucent powder at the moment.

I use a setting powder almost everyday but they aren’t my favorite products. I much prefer finishing powders simply because I usually love the feel of them on my skin, the way they meld the makeup together and just bring everything together. The biggest problem I have with setting powders is many change the color of my base as I am so pale and regardless of the producer saying they don’t have any color, they frequently do when you are super pale or they make everything look powdery. I also don’t like heavy setting powders that make my makeup cakey. When you think about the numbers of layers on the skin by the time you get to setting powder it is difficult to get one that is light enough not to make your makeup cake up but still set things and keep them in place plus prolong the wear of makeup. I tend to like “pore minimizing” setting powders.

Very, very (as our obnoxious president would say ?) very fine. I love Physians Formula mineral talc in light it gives a nice slight tan and subtle glow. I find it very, very, very good.

I would love some recommendations for a good setting powder I am almost 50 and have dry skin with some texture. I feel like I’ve tried so many that are just too heavy. Thanks

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!