The Finishing Touch to Your Makeup Routine? Pressed Powder


Editor Tip: Despite its buildable coverage and lightweight feel, this powder does have a tendency to settle into creases—so you might want to skip it if you’re concerned about fine lines and wrinkles.

Key Ingredients: Talc, perlite | Available Shades: 24

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of pressed powder?

For one, they lend staying power to cream and liquid foundation formulas. What’s more, explains 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 touch-ups without the potential mess of loose powder particle spillage.” The best pressed setting powders also work by absorbing excess oil (especially in the T-zone) to create a smoother, shine-free complexion.

Gerstein also notes that the best pressed setting powders on the market are “incredibly finely milled and featherlight,” which makes them suitable for all skin types. These days, they also offer skin-care benefits—which, in some cases, can help “bind moisture to the skin,” she says. This makes them an especially ideal choice for those with dry or mature skin, on whom traditional powders can look cakey.

How do I apply pressed powder?

Remember that less is more when it comes to pressed powder—after all, it’s not bronzer or blush. “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 said. 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.

Meet the experts

How we test and review products

Before reviewing any makeup, we ask questions about a number of factors: What ingredients are in it? Does the brand offer a wide shade range inclusive of consumers with all skin tones and undertones? Is it safe for readers who have sensitive skin or wear contact lenses? Is it on the affordable side or more of a splurge? Is its packaging consciously designed or needlessly wasteful?

For our review of the best pressed powders, we enlisted the help of multiple editors, writers, contributors, and professional makeup artists to review the products. This ensures our testing base spans different skin tones, genders, and dermatological conditions. We considered each product’s performance across four primary categories: ingredients, wear and longevity, packaging, and inclusivity. For more on what’s involved in our reporting, check out our complete reviews process and methodology page.

Our staff and testers

A beauty product is a personal purchase. You might be searching for a face cream to address persistent dryness or a new nail product to add to your Sunday self-care routine; you may simply be browsing around for the latest launches to hit the hair market. No matter what you seek or your individual needs and concerns, Allure wants to ensure that you love anything we recommend in our stories. We believe that having a diverse team of writers and editors—in addition to the wide range of outside testers and industry experts we regularly call upon—is essential to reaching that goal.


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