Setting powder is a solid post-foundation makeup step that many of us wouldn’t dream of skipping—especially those of us with oily skin (and those of us who simply like a velvet-soft matte finish). Aside from keeping oil and shine under control all day, setting powders also help extend the wear time of your foundation and concealer significantly, while also providing a smooth canvas for the rest of your complexion products to be applied on top (contour, blush, highlighter, etc.). Loose setting powder not only help mattify extra-dewy foundation, but they also help refine the look of enlarged pores, blur texture, and soften the look of fine lines.
The best matte setting powders, however, shouldn’t be so drying that you’re left with a cakey, chalky finish or skin that feels tight and uncomfortable—it’s all about the balance, right? The best setting powders are typically super finely-milled in texture and will offer oil-controlling benefits without leaving the skin looking parched and textured. Finishing powders will set your base and give the skin an Instagram filter-mimicking soft-focus finish. Makeup artists also love to use setting powders on models and celebrities because of its ability to glide smoothly over the skin for a Facetune-like finish. However, if you’re going to be at an event with flash photography, you’ll want to opt for a tinted formula rather than a white one if you want to avoid a ghost-like effect from the camera flashback. Ahead, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite matte powders for a smooth and pore-free canvas.
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