There are a heck of a lot of loose setting powders on the market these days. What with baking becoming a massive trend, brands are hopping aboard the powder train left, right and center. I’ve noticed that a lot of people have strong opinions on what the best option is, almost more so than any other product, but I reckon that there really is no best, there’s only what suits your skin the most. With that in mind, I wanted to discuss the differences between some of the top powders on the market.
Let’s start with the cult classic – the Laura Mercier Translucent Powder. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this product. It’s a heavily talc based powder and you can feel that it’s fairly unrefined. Because of this, it mattifies the skin very effectively, but it looks more obvious than other options. It’s fine on oily skin types because once some natural oil comes through everything meshes together, but on dry skin types… not so much. It’s only going to leave the skin looking even drier. I also don’t love the way this powder looks under the eyes, where the skin is more delicate (despite it being the most commonly used powder for baking). When it comes down to it, I would genuinely recommend this for most oily skin types, buuuuttt all I’m saying is it very much reminds me of the $5 Rimmel Stay Matte Powder.
I’ve got to say, I’m pretty impressed with Kat Von D’s setting powder. She went for a mix of mica and talc as a base, which means that it’s better suited for an array of skin types. Just to clarify, talc is good for oily skin and mica is good for dry skin. Mica also tends to look more weightless than talc and it has the advantage of making makeup more water resistant. You can feel that this powder is more finely milled than the Laura Mercier Powder. I just have two small gripes. 1. It does leave a slight white cast on my skin and I’m already pretty white (could be tricky for darker skin tones). 2. It has a small amount of shimmer. It’s not really detectable on the skin, but it’s there.
The HD Powder is different from the other two in that it’s not a setting powder, it’s a finishing powder. To be honest, that distinction kind of annoys me, but I do see what they’re saying to an extent. This isn’t the powder to use if you want to lock your foundation in place. Rather, it’s the powder you use when you want to create an ultra smooth canvas. It’ll do shit all for oil absorption. I mean, honestly, if you’re oily, there’s just no point because your “glow” will bust through within an hour. It is a beautiful powder for dry skin though. Keep in mind, you need to be careful if you’re going to be photographed with flash. Silica based powders are notorious for coke nose.
There are two other loose powders worth mentioning. The first being the RCMA No Colour Powder. I definitely like the way this powder feels. I’d liken it is most to the Kat Von D Powder (only for a 1/3 of the price). It’s fairly lightweight and fine and it’s made with a combination of Talc and Silica, again, making it ideal for most skin types.
The second powder is the CoverFX Perfect Setting Powder (they also do a matte and an illuminating version). It’s made from Mica and Silica. It’s beautiful and weightless on the skin. It also feels lovely and it photographs nicely. It’s going to be most ideal for dry/normal skin types, but I actually still like the way it looks on my oily skin. Plus, I have to give CoverFX props for making a “deep translucent” version because translucent powder is translucent not transparent!