Oh, the setting powders, finishing powders, and baking powders! You’ve come to the correct spot if you’re unsure about which powder to use as a setting powder, or even what setting powder is in the first place! 

Set yourself up for a first-rate Beauty Base education in all things setting powder, from what it is to how it’s applied and even which setting powder your favorite makeup artist celebs are using – so buckle up for a first-rate Beauty Base education in all things setting powder. 

What is Setting Power?

When we think of a traditional powder, we think of setting powder. Setting powder is used on top of the foundation to minimize shine and ‘set’ your makeup so that it lasts as long as possible.

Setting powder can be colored to match your skin tone, or it can be entirely transparent, so you won’t even notice it’s there! 

When put to the skin, the foundation tends to be very wet, which means it may readily collect pollutants, travel around, and be wiped off. Setting powder is crucial because it works as a barrier, protecting your skin and allowing your makeup to last longer. 

How to Use a Setting Powder

When you’re using setting powder, you want to make sure that you’re using it correctly. So we came up with a few pointers to help you use the powder correctly. 

  • Put on your primer, foundation, contour, blush, and concealer. 
  • Make sure each one is blended thoroughly. 
  • Apply your powder makeup (such as bronzer and highlight).
  • While your foundation is still wet, apply the setting powder with a powder sponge or brush. 
  • Once your skin has a smooth finish, be sure you don’t have any excess left on your skin. Applying a light layer of powder setting will give you a light dewy look on your skin. If you have oil skin, then you’ll want to do a thicker layer to last you for the day. 

You’ll need a brush to apply your setting powder in addition to the powder itself. You’ll need to brush with a lot of surface area for mixing loose setting powder.

Using a brush instead of a puff to apply powder gives your makeup that coveted soft-focus diffused effect. Because they have two types of bristles, stippled brushes are excellent for setting powder buffing. 

  • The bristles on the outside are lighter and provide airbrushed coverage.
  • The black bristles near the handle are denser and aid in product collection.

There are a lot of powder brushes on the market, but Mented’s stippled Loose Powder Brush makes it simple to choose one. It does what a powder brush should: spreads a light, uniform coating of powder without disturbing the foundation below. 

What Types of Setting Powder to Use on Different Skins

Setting Power

Setting powder helps to fight the impact of oil breakouts on the face, which dry skin already lacks. Therefore it may not be an essential component of your makeup regimen.

Apply setting powder to oil parts of the face and either use a moisturizing setting powder or no powder at all in oil areas if you have combination skin. 

What Setting Powder is Best for Dark Skin?

Setting powders that advertise themselves as transparent might leave white layers on top of your complexion; instead, look for a tinted setting powder that matches your skin tone.

The wide range of hues are available in setting powders, so you should be able to choose one that matches your skin tone and complexion. 

What Setting Powder is Best for Dry Skin?

Setting powder is intended to absorb oils on your face in order to decrease shine, but if your skin is already dry, you may end up drying it out even more. A moisturizing setting powder is the ideal setting powder for dry skin to avoid this. 

What Setting Powder is Best For Oily Skin?

Setting powder is specifically intended to fight oil skin; thus, any type of setting powder should work well for oil skin! Check the label of the powder setting you’re thinking about buying to see if it’s a moisturizing setting powder, as they are generally suited for dry skin. 

What Setting Powder is Best For Heavy Coverage?

Follow up with a powder that matches your skin tone after you’ve applied your foundation. This will guarantee complete coverage, and if you work in air-conditioned surroundings or have oil skin, just reapply as needed during the day, giving special attention to your T-Zone.

What Setting Powder is Best For Light Coverage?

Simply use a BB, CC, or tinted moisturizer and gently sprinkle some mineral face powder to create a natural appearance. Hello, inner radiance!

What Setting Powder Doesn’t Give Flashback?

What good does it do you to have a perfect makeup if no one is going to photograph you?

If you want to be photographed at the club or want your wedding photos to appear their finest, you’ll need to locate a transparent loose setting powder that won’t cause flashback and will give you the Casper effect on the film. 

The Different Types of Setting Powder

Setting Power

They are cosmetic powders that are applied to the face on top of cream or liquid makeup to set it in place. Let’s have a look at the many sorts of powders available.


HD/finishing powders are similar to transparent powders in that they don’t have a tint and don’t give coverage. These powders are designed to hide pores, fine wrinkles, and create the appearance of airbrushing. It’s worth noting that they might produce flashbacks when used with flash photography. 


They’re just pressed powders in the same way that blush or bronzer is pressed. They’re generally colored and come in a range of colors and hues. They may offer light all the way up to complete coverage. These are ideal for keeping in your luggage for touch-ups on the move. 


These are colored, offer many coverages, and are available in pressed or loose forms. They’re constructed of finely powdered minerals that are said to be good for your skin. 


Translucent powders must be tinted. Their primary function is to set makeup while also assisting in the management of oil and shine. These are frequently available in crushed form, although they are more commonly encountered as loose powder. 


These are often packed in a jar container. Finely milled loose powders may be extremely dirty. They can also come in a variety of colors, from transparent powders to tinted tints.

How to Pick the Perfect Powder

Working with the staff at department stores like Sephora and Nordstrom to select the finest cosmetic products for your skin tone and type is simple. Let your beauty expert know whether you want cruelty-free goods or if you require a product that absorbs excess oil. 

The appropriate match will vanish on your skin while testing powder. Keep in mind that not every skin tone will look good with translucent powder. Hourglass’ Veil Translucent Setting Powder may be used on a wide range of skin tones. 

However, if you have a darker skin tone, Laura Mercier has a highly translucent loose setting powder in medium deep that sets makeup while also reducing oil and shine. 

Keep in mind that what works for your closest friend or a beauty writer you trust may not work for you. It’s recommended to experiment with a variety of powders to discover your perfect fit.

Setting Power Recommendations

Setting Power

I would recommend a loose translucent powder if you just want to use one powder. In terms of color and flexibility, it is the most ubiquitous. My personal favorites are as follows: 

Coty Airspun

coty airspun

This drugstore staple is both affordable and effective. You’ll have to get past the overwhelming scent, but if you can get beyond that, it’s a fantastic powder. 

Urban Decay Stay Pressed Powder

urban decay stay naked

This is the powder for you if you want something with coverage and that will help with oil and shininess.

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Powder

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Powder

If you have normal to dry skin and want a perfect finish, a small amount of powdered powder can assist. 

Amazonian Clay Loose Powder Pie

Amazonian Clay Loose Powder Pie

This is the powder for you if you want something with coverage and that will assist with grease and shininess. 

Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder

laura mercier

This powder does an excellent job of making your skin look smooth and poreless. It does, however, come at a high price. 

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Should you Use Setting Powder or Setting Spray?

It all depends on the type of skin you have. Powders are a fantastic method to combat shine and provide a matte basis for oil skin. A spritz of moisturizing setting spray on dry skin may be beneficial.

Why not combine the two for a long-lasting result? This will keep your makeup in place even if you have a lunchtime cosmetic meltdown. 

Setting sprays are excellent for your overall look. Powders, on the other hand, are excellent for setting particular areas like your T-zone and beneath your eyes. Powder allows for more exact application and a variety of finishes, including shimmering, matte, natural, and velvety. 

I have combination skin, which means I have both oil and dry areas. My skin changes over the year as well! My skin becomes considerably more oil in the summer when it’s hot and I sweat more, and it dries out in the winter when it’s cold. 

I adjust my regimen to meet the demands of my skin at different seasons of the year. In the winter, I don’t use setting powder (or just use it sparingly) and instead rely on a setting spray.

In the summer, I’ll apply a setting spray to dissolve the powder into my skin and eliminate the “cakey” powdered appearance! But, nevertheless, I always use a spray.

Setting Powders Celebrities Use

Sometimes it’s necessary to seek advice from our favorite beauty experts on the items we can’t live without. Take a look at which setting powders celebrity makeup artists use if you’re a fan of celebrity-endorsed cosmetic products.

Jeffree Star

Jeffree has been known to use KKW setting powders in the past, but now that he’s made his own Magic Star Setting Powder, we can’t see him using anything else! Jeffree described the powder as “weightless and ultra-fine,” and he added a “faint fragrance of baked cotton candy” to his setting powder. 

Jaclyn hill

Hill uses two different powders in her signature look: Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Airbrush Powder and Lancome Absolue Radiant Smoothing Face Powder. She seals her foundation with Charlotte Tilbury setting powder, then adds radiance with Lancome setting powder. 

James Charles

In his list of Holy Grail cosmetic items, James Charles suggests Coty Airspun Powder. It keeps his makeup on all day, according to him, and is ideal for combination-oily skin. 

Kylie Jenner

While Kylie and Kim are rivals when it comes to their brands, she confesses that when it comes to setting her makeup, she can’t help but grab for the KKW Brightening Powder. 

Different Ways to Use a Setting Powder

Setting Power

You might be surprised by the variety of setting powder uses on this list. Setting powder is the definition of a multi-purpose beauty product. Setting powder may be used in a variety of ways in your cosmetic regimen.

Setting Eyeliner and Eyeshadow

Even if you can apply eyeshadow flawlessly, if you have oil eyelids, your eye color may fade or smear during the day. To avoid eyeshadow transfer, gently sprinkle with setting powder after applying primer but before applying eyeshadow. 

Eyeliner is the same way. Before applying eyeliner, dust-setting powder down the lash line. Apply a touch of setting powder after applying eyeliner for extra smudge resistance. 


Use your favorite setting powder to produce dramatic highlights instead of buying a new product. Apply concealer to the areas you wish to draw attention to first. Depending on your age, complexion, desired makeup appearance, and other considerations, many women opt to accentuate the following areas: 

  • Bridge of the nose 
  • Under the eye 
  • Center of chin and forehead 
  • Under the cheek contour 

Apply a liberal amount of setting powder to the skin using a damp sponge. Use a setting powder that is a shade or two lighter than your complexion to produce visible highlights. Allow your powder to bake for 5-10 minutes as it sits on your face. 

As a result of your natural warmer body temperature, the setting powder and concealer fuse together during this period. For this to work, the powder must be used immediately after the concealer has been applied while the concealer is still wet.

After you’ve finished baking, use the brush to remove any leftover setting powder. Baking produces a dramatic highlight, so it’s best kept for exceptional occasions. 

To Make Lipstick Last

You don’t want to have to reapply your favorite nude lipstick all the time. One setting powder tip is to use a powdered brush with setting powder to contour your lips. This results in a clean, smudge-free outline. Another technique is to softly tap a brush with setting powder over a one-ply tissue placed over the lips. This helps the lipstick stay longer. 

Hiding Your Under-Eye Bags

Do you have tired-looking eyes when you wake up? Don’t be concerned. For an immediately brighter eye, all you need is concealer and setting powder.  Apply concealer beneath the eyes first. Starting at the inside corner of the eyes and blending outwards is a nice idea.

To avoid the product settling into fine under-eye lines, use only as much concealer as you need. The best approach for this sensitive skin region is to blend in the concealer with your finger or brush using patting strokes. 

Apply a setting powder that is a shade or two lighter than your skin tone. Again, don’t use too much product and gently massage the brush or puff over the area. The result is a brightened, no-bag eye region with a dewy finish around the periphery. 

Setting Foundation

This is the tried-and-true method of setting powder application. After applying foundation, dusting powder on top locks in the moisture and keeps the makeup looking fresh for longer. Powder’s oil-fighting elements will also reduce shine, which is a significant plus for ladies with oil skin. 

Powdered colors, including blushes, bronzers, and contour tones, that are applied directly over foundation have a propensity to smear. When the pigmentation in a powder clings to the hydration in your foundation, you’ve made a significant beauty faux pas. 

The setting powder acts as a barrier between your foundation and the rest of your face makeup, effectively setting it and preventing streaks.  Consider how much setting powder you want to put where while applying it. The more product you use, the more matte the final result will be.

When it comes to setting powder, less is more, especially in places with dewy highlights such as above the cheekbones, if you’re looking for a casual summer look. If you want a refined matte look, think 90s Vogue covers, then use extra powder, especially in your T-zone. 

Toning Down Heavy Makeup

You’ve just applied a berry blush, the color is lovely, but you used too much of it and want to tone it down. Do not use makeup to remove!

Instead, use a setting powder to dilute the color. Buff the setting powder over the problem area with a brush. You’ll have a toned-down, ideal hue for your skin with one simple step. 

Blending Eyeshadow

Bold and deep eyeshadow hues are enjoyable to try with, but you may find yourself thinking, “Oh no, this is too much.” There’s no need to be concerned; there’s a simple answer.

Lightly mix setting powder over your eyelids with your blending brush. The shadow’s brightness is reduced as a result. Setting powder also blends multiple makeup hues together for a smoother color transition if you have them on your lids. 

Covering Naked Skin

You can get some coverage on your bare skin using a tinted setting powder on days when you don’t want to use foundation.

Dusting it on your face will reduce wrinkles and pores while also controlling your oil T-zone, giving you a healthy glow. Because the coverage of setting powder is so thin, it won’t hide imperfections. Apply concealer to areas that need to be covered up, then set your skin with setting powder.

To get this not-quite-naked skin look, hydrate well and use a primer. The powder sticks to the foundation. You’ll need another product to act as an adhesive for your powder setting if you don’t want to use foundation.

Give Your Flashes to Boost

Make sure you use a small, fluffy brush to apply your powder. It allows you to dust your lashes gently without smudging your eyeliner or leaving a powdery residue on your makeup. Using your eyeshadow brush, dip it into the setting powder and blot off the excess.

Dust your upper and lower lashes lightly with powder, using gentle touch to avoid clumping. Apply a second coat of mask to those lashes, and that’s it! In a matter of seconds, you’ve gained thicker, longer lashes.

Using it as a Dry Shampoo

Setting powder may be used as dry shampoo, which is a touch out of the ordinary. If you have a translucent loose setting powder, use a powder brush to apply it to your roots the same way you would to your T-zone.

Once you’re sure the oil has been absorbed, brush off the excess. In a pinch, the pressed powder will suffice, although loose powder is preferable. 


Question: Does Setting Powder Expire?

Answer: Using expired makeup may have some very unappealing consequences, so avoid using any sort of outdated makeup at all costs! After about a year, expired setting powder can start to house germs and create concerns ranging from skin irritation to acne, edema, and more! 

Question: Is Setting Powder a Necessity?

Answer: Yes, if you’re using liquid or cream foundation, BB cream, tinted moisturizer, or any wet makeup. In the same way that sand was used to dry ink in handwritten letters, the powder helps the wet cosmetics firm and settle better. 

Question: Is Setting Powder or Setting Spray Better?

Answer: A setting powder helps to hold your makeup in place throughout the day. It creates a velvety effect on your skin.
A setting spray is a liquid that you spray over your skin to keep your makeup stay in place, and it usually covers your entire face, including your eyes and lips. It has a softer, dewier effect than powder, is colorless, and adds very little texture to the skin.
So it really depends on which one you prefer. Try them out together or separately. If you have oil skin, you may want to consider using both, as the powder gives you a less greasy look, and the spray will hold your makeup in place. 

Setting Power

Although pressed powder foundations have been around for a long time, setting powders have grown increasingly popular in recent years. A setting powder should be in everyone’s makeup bag.

These highly versatile products may be used to set concealer and/or foundation as well as mattify shine and brighten the face on their own. 

Wearing it improves your cosmetics experience by a factor of ten. However, there is a catch. If you’re using the powder incorrectly, as a lot of people do, it won’t help you. What are your thoughts? 

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