Having fought for our independence, our right to vote, and agency over our bodies, women are no longer baking cookies…we're baking our faces.
Looks like we all survived winter. Birds are chirping, flowers are blooming, and my allergies have never been worse. Yay spring! I'm a contact wearer and every year around this time, my eyes continue to water throughout the day, streaking my eye makeup. I'm a firm believer that a good setting power can save the day, so this week I sought out powders and setting sprays that will lock my makeup in place this spring.
The baking technique originated from drag makeup, and uses powder to help set or "bake" problem areas that crease throughout the day: under the eyes, around the mouth, the top of the forehead, and around the nose. As your skin warms up, the power traps in the heat and helps melt the makeup into your skin, creating a flawless, smooth application. Since I'm a lazy makeup queen, I only bake when I'm feeling extra glamorous. But as of late, I've been setting my under eyes with Benefit's 'Hello Flawless!' Powder Foundation ($34.00). I used shade honey all this week on top of my go-to Maybelline's Fit Me Foundation. Although this product is considered a foundation, when I used it as a setting powder it LITERALLY left my skin airbrushed. It was creamy but not oily, full coverage but not heavy. It could be used by itself for a full face, or on top of a bb cream/foundation/tinted moisturizer. There were no foundation creases under my eyes or around my mouth (a problem area of mine even at 23) and it masked some of my pesky imperfections like acne scars and redness. I've been complimented on my skin three times this week and have serendipitously been gifted a Sephora gift card. Looks like I'll be rekindling my love with Benefit.
Benefit's 'Hello Flawless!' Powder Foundation: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ I want it. Now.
On to Laura Mercier, the MOTHER of powders and foundation. I've never tried a bad foundation or powder from this brand—some of their eyeshadows and lip products bore me, but that's what you'd expect from a Natasha Denona fangirl. The Translucent Loose Setting Powder ($38.00) is—just as YouTube's Tati Westbrook claims—amazing. Yes, I know. I'm late to the game. This powder has changed the way my makeup sits on my face. My blush and contour look cleaner and my foundation looks more natural on my skin. It's one of those correcting powders that's actually not gimmicky at all. It's a no-flashback formula and it absorbs oil and reduces shine throughout the day. This could easily be a staple in my makeup collection, or my go-to setting powder on days when I want more of a glam look.
Laura Mercier's Translucent Loose Setting Powder: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Cult classic.
I got a sample of Hourglass's new Veil Translucent Setting Powder ($46.00). The claims of this powder are the same as any other: light-reflecting particles in a finely-milled formula that will diminish fine lines, pores, bad credit, and browsing history. A powder is a powder—what can I say.
Hourglass Veil Translucent Setting Powder: ⭐⭐⭐⭐A great performing powder for every day and full-glam looks.
Hourglass performs like Laura Mercier's TLSP, but it leaves a silkier texture on the skin, a finish more comparable to Urban Decay's Velvitizer Translucent Mix-In Medium ($34.00). It has a slip to it, meaning the powder is so fine that you can feel just how soft it lays on the skin. A little goes a long way.
Urban Decay Velvitizer Translucent Mix-In Medium: ⭐⭐⭐⭐A cheaper but equally performing powder that can also be used as a mixing medium in foundation and creams.
Most setting sprays are formulated with water, glycerin, and alcohol—not the most innovative technology in makeup. Isn't there a Fiber+Collagen+Vitamin C+Anti-Aging+Fairy Angel Dust formula hiding somewhere? Are setting sprays getting more exciting, yet? Urban Decay's All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray ($32.00) has always been my favorite spray, outside of MAC's Fix+. And I suppose I enjoy the idea of combining skincare with setting products, but UB's latest formula, the Rebound Collagen-Infused Complexion Prep Priming Spray, leaves me a bit oily after a few sprays of product. Also, those collagen ingredients are rendered useless if they aren't active agents—which they aren't. In terms of actually holding your makeup in place, this setting spray is most effective before applying your makeup, hence the product's name. I usually only use a spray after finishing my makeup application; toning sprays don't really do it for me.
Urban Decay's Rebound Collagen-Infused Complexion Prep Priming Spray: ⭐⭐ Sticking with the classic All Nighter.
Too Faced Peaches & Cream collection was very cute when it launched, but I was never inclined to shop it. I received a sample of the Peach Mist Mattifying Spray ($32.00) and it smells like fresh peaches, leaving my skin matte all day.
Too Faced Peaches & Cream Peach Mist Mattifying Spray: ⭐⭐⭐Good. The perfume in the product may be a little drying for some.
I was impressed by Too Faced's performance, but when compared to Caudalie's Beauty Elixir ($49.00)—another spray that claims to incorporate skincare properties (mint, rose, rosemary oils)—I realized not all setting sprays are made equal. Caudalie has a beautiful smell, fresh and sweet all at once; Too Faced, in comparison, smells more like chemicals. Caudalie doesn't have an atomizer that distributes the product all over the face, so it left a few water spots on my makeup. And I noticed Too Faced left me a bit dry around my eyes after the third day of use. I think the Beauty Elixir is a luxury, hydrating mist that can be used before and after my skincare and makeup, but it's certainly not needed in my collection.
Caudalie's Beauty Elixir: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ A bougie water spray that you totally don't need but want.
This week's pick is Benefit's 'Hello Flawless!' Powder Foundation. (Can't believe I'm just now using it.) Until next week, may you bake in peace.