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Makeup Setting Powders For a Flawless Face That Lasts!

  • posted March 1st, 2012
  • Beauty

Most of us have a foundation they swear by and rarely stray from their preferred brand, formula, and shade. After all, it probably took you years of experimenting, researching, and a few tragic mismatches to find the shade you now lovingly call your go-to. But realistically, is your favorite foundation lasting as long as you want it to? Does it still have that perfect just-applied finish by the time lunchtime rolls around? Probably not, and that’s not a cardinal sin; given environmental factors, your skin’s natural oils, and your day’s activities, your makeup is bound to deteriorate as the day goes on… but that doesn’t mean you can’t do something about it! A makeup setting powder is a great way to add length to your makeup application’s lifetime, ensuring that your foundation doesn’t settle into fine lines or pores, and doesn’t look caky or oily by the afternoon. Whether you prefer loose or pressed, make sure you choose a lightweight powder and apply sparingly so you don’t feel like you’re adding an entire extra layer to face. You can even take it along with you for light touch-ups throughout the day instead of touching up with your regular foundation (though you may find that using these handy powders in the first place may completely eliminate your need for touching up)!

Pictured above: Mineral Fusion Setting Powder, Cover FX Loose Setting Powder, Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder, and MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Natural.

– Alexandra Gambardella

Your Best Friend Photo Finish Pressed Powders


Your Best Friend (“YBF”) is founded by Stacey Schieffelin, a former Ford Model who re-emerged as a QVC entrepreneur and, per Ladies’ Home Journal, one of America’s “Power Women.” It seems to be a no-brainer for a model 20-years over to launch a cosmetics company; perhaps less obvious is the personalized approach she brings despite relying primarily on television sales for her success.

I’ll never forget watching a girl sitting on the opposite side of the Hebrew school classroom carefully apply layer upon layer of eye shadow in diligent succession, much to the chagrin of our over-worked Sunday school teacher. That was just my first encounter in watching a peer diminish the size of her eyebrow-to-eyeball facial real estate. In years to come I turned to many a trendy peer for guidance on finding the best face glitter (urban outfitters, duh!), blue mascara (um, the same), and lip gloss (bonne belle, no?). Ms. Schiefflin seems to have experienced the same and strives to achieve that status of “best,” in titling her makeup line accordingly.
Though Photo Finish ($28.90) is marketed as a “face shape shifting trio,” meant to “accentuate, camouflage and blend,” it really is just a series of pressed powders of incrementally darker shading. Perhaps an expert might be knowledgeable in proper “shape-shifting” shading, but unfortunately I am not an experienced facial shape-shifter, and the results of my attempted application were quite shoddy (or actually, spotty).

That said, YBF emphasizes that its products, including Photo Finish Powders, are good for you (including “some of the most advanced ingredients and technology available,” and are paraben and cruelty-free). YBF deserves much acclaim for contributing to community and international organizations, including the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, and the Special Olympics, among many other worthy causes. Expanding on the do-gooder-ness is the YBF “sparkle your spirit” campaign, for “girlfriends [to] connect, build friendships, and support one another!” There’s no doubting the good intentions of this brand.
In sum, for those seeking some virtual BFFs (particularly ones with more model experience and less back-of-the-hebrew-school-classroom experience), and also maybe some makeup, YBF is the brand for you.

From our friends at Short and Sweet NYC

Healthy Coverage Without The Mess With Pressed Mineral Powder!

  • posted April 1st, 2011
  • Beauty

Back in my acne-prone high school days, I relied on heavy coverage makeup to hide behind, even though I knew it was only making my skin worse. Nowadays I have a clearer complexion (thank goodness), and although I still do like a fair amount of coverage when it comes to foundation, I try to be as conscious as possible about what I’m putting on my skin and making sure I have a good balance between the look I want and giving my skin room to breathe! While I strongly dislike loose powder, I’ve been trying to get myself to convert to mineral makeup — the ideal solution for girls like me who want buildable coverage that won’t clog pores, appear caked on, or suffocate skin — but call me clumsy, I just can’t get past the mess and too-sheer feel of most loose powders. As an alternative, I’ve compiled some highly-lauded pressed powder alternatives for those of us who are gradually trying to wean ourselves off heavy-coverage powders like MAC, but still want a matte formula that applies evenly and smoothly!

Pictured above: Jane Iredale PurePressed Mineral Powder with SPF 20, Tarte Provocateur Pressed Mineral Powder SPF 8, Cover FX Mineral Powder Foundation, Laura Mercier Mineral Pressed Powder SPF 15, and Sue Devitt SpaComplexion Hydrating Marine Minerals Pressed Powder.

– Alex Gambardella

Beautify & De-Shine With These Mattifying Makeup Products

  • posted August 1st, 2010
  • Beauty

Whether it’s sweltering hot outside or shiveringly cold, my face makeup always tends to get a bit sweaty and unsightly about halfway through my day. Even though my skin is more on the dry side than oily, my makeup starts to get dewy around lunchtime, and I lose that smooth, matte canvas I started with in the morning. I like to keep my powder on-hand for mid-day touch-ups, but just piling on more powder often has the reserve effect, and realistically my makeup needs a little more specified help when it comes to de-shining and staying that way! Mattifying powders are made specifically to serve as that final anti-shine step in your makeup routine, helping you absorb excess oil your face may produce throughout the day and keeping your face looking clean, smooth, and matte. They’re sheer, so they won’t add any unwanted color (or wash you out), and they’re lightweight, so they don’t make you feel like you’re wearing an extra layer. I’m a fan of MAC Blot Powder personally, which is great to use to top off your look in the morning, or keep with you to dab on during breaks to the ladies’ room, or whenever you’re starting to look shiny!

Clockwise from top-left: Urban Decay De-Slick Mattifying Powder, JK Jemma Kid On Set Mattifying Powder, MAC Blot Powder, and TheBalm Sexy Mama Anti-Shine Powder.

Save on  Mattifying Powders at Sephora from’s coupon site

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