Regardless of what kind of look you’re going for, applying setting powder is a crucial final step to ensuring your makeup stays in place throughout the day (or night!) ahead. Don’t just take it from us, though: New York City-based makeup artist Delina Medhin previously told Allure that “setting your makeup is one of the most important steps of your makeup routine.” That’s where the best setting powders come into play — and they’re especially popular amongst the pros. In particular, “pressed powder is one of the true superheroes in my pro kit,” says New York City-based makeup artist Sara Talias.
What’s more, explains fellow New York City-based makeup artist Suzy Gerstein, pressed powders are more user-friendly than loose powders since they’re perfect for throwing in your bag for on-the-go touchups without the potential mess of loose powder particle spillage.” The best pressed setting powders also work by absorbing unwanted shine (especially in the T-zone), locking in makeup, and ultimately creating a smoother, more blurred complexion.
Gerstein also notes that the best pressed setting powders on the market are “incredibly finely milled and feather-light.” As such, she says, they’re “a great option for many skin types.” You’ll also be pleasantly surprised to know that some of the best pressed powders offer skin-care benefits, which, per Gerstein, can help “bind moisture to the skin.” This makes them an especially ideal choice for those with dry or mature skin, on whom, according to the makeup artist, “traditional powders look cakey.”
When it comes time to apply the pressed powder, remember that less is more. “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,” Medhin previously revealed. Similarly, Talias recommends using a small brush and “diffusing the product in certain areas of the face,” such as the nose, chin, and forehead, which tend to collect the most shine.
When working with clients, Gerstein loves reaching for the By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra Pressed Powder, which offers a natural finish that feels like a second skin. What’s more, she explains, “The formula is super lightweight and non-drying, so it tends not to cake up on even drier complexions.” Its hero ingredient, hyaluronic acid, is excellent for boosting and maintaining hydration, especially in delicate areas like your undereyes.