Setting Powders


I’ve slowly realized the importance of setting powders (or finishing powders), so obviously, I’ve tried a bunch to see which one is worth all my money—ranging from drug store to department store. If you were every on the fence with any of these powders, then take a read! Here is my honest review on four different setting powders.

After trying a few, I was able to make a checklist of the standards I look for in setting powders. The checklist includes the following:

  1. Keeps my makeup in place/doesn’t shift
  2. Keeps the oil on my skin to a minimum (so I don’t reflect the entire sun onto surrounding people)
  3. Doesn’t cake up

Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Laura Mercier has done it again. The Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder is grail. I’ve finally caved and got it and I’m so angry at myself for waiting this long. Shame on me for not trusting her earlier for this setting powder!


It met all of my standards. Makeup stayed in place, kept my oil down, and I haven’t seen it cake up on me yet. (Knock on wood!)






Though the price is pretty high up there, I definitely feel that this is something everyone needs to try/have in their makeup collection. I was shocked at how little powder I used went a long, long way. It lasts an entire day for me at work. I’m definitely going to be repurchasing when I run out of this—which won’t be any time soon!

Too Faced Primed & Poreless (Pressed)

The Too Faced Primed & Poreless Pressed Powder was a product that I got because of a Youtuber’s recommendation. She raved about it in so many of her product reviews, so I caved and gave it a try. And honestly, I wish I could love it as much as she did. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve given this product SO many chances. (I’ve hit pan on this setting powder. That’s how many chances I’ve given it.)


It did very well on setting my makeup on the parts of my face that didn’t get oily. It held my makeup in those places the entire day. It also made my pores look teeny, tiny and invisible in some areas. So if you’re in for the poreless, it definitely succeeded (at least, for me).


It NOTICEABLY caked up around my oily patches which then shifted my foundation, every time. My forehead looked disgusting because of the caked up powder. I usually checked myself in the mirror at least once an hour at work to make sure I didn’t look like an idiot.


$30 and out of stock at Sephora (online)


It goes to show that this setting powder does very well for many people. I, unfortunately, just wasn’t in that group of OMG THIS IS PERFECT AND THE BEST THING THAT HAS EVER HAPPENED TO ME people. And I think that if we’re spending that much money, we deserve to have that reaction.

I feel that if you’re not prone to oily skin, however, this setting powder would be perfect. It’s travel friendly (since it’s pressed, the powder won’t fly everywhere when you open it) and comes with a puff for you to use whenever, wherever. I keep this in my bag for on the go touch ups since I can’t use any of my loose powders while being out.

NYX Cosmetics Studio Finishing Powder Translucent Finish

So after trying different higher end setting powders (and my wallet crying), I decided to try and find a drug store alternative. I searched for reviews and stumbled upon the NYX Cosmetics Studio Finishing Powder Translucent Finish (ugh, try and say that 5 times real fast!) and picked one up at Target. They also sell it at Ulta.


I will say that this definitely would be my go to drug store brand setting powder, without a doubt. It did a very comparable job to the Laura Mercier for a fourth of its price! I showed no shine from oil, my makeup stayed where it was supposed to, and it didn’t cake up.


Though it is cheaper and does the job of any higher end setting powder, it was super messy. The loose powder literally flew everywhere when I opened it. I would have to open the jar carefully and slowly and literally hold my breath when I applied it on my face because I didn’t want to accidentally inhale too much. A tiny movement would set off a little mushroom cloud of powder.




If you’re weary of throwing down the $40 to get the Laura Mercier, DEFINITELY try and find the NYX setting powder. Besides the whole powder flying everywhere, I think it does a great job keeping shine down and setting your makeup. I trust the NYX for late nights out from keeping my makeup look crazy.

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Poreless Finishing Powder

I know I’ve talked about the It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Poreless Finishing Powder in a previous blog post, but I want to go in a more detailed review on why I seemed to be confused in that post. But honestly, I think I’m still a little confused with this product.


It did keep my make up in place and didn’t leave any caked up residue. And just like the Too Faced Pressed powder, it’s also pressed and easy to carry in your bag for on the go touch ups.


There aren’t necessarily any cons that I can think of, but it wasn’t a product that blew me away. It did the bare minimum job of what I expected from setting powders (if that makes sense).




For a product that is basically the same price as the Too Faced, it gave less effort and it was something I didn’t know if it was noticeably working. No, it didn’t cake and I think it kept my make up in place, but I didn’t see anything different from the other products I’ve tried. This product in general makes me all wishy-washy because I don’t know how this product is different than the other expensive setting powders (or the cheaper NYX for that matter). Basically, for $30, I was expecting a WOW, but all I got was a Huh… and would definitely choose Too Faced over this one.


IF you can splurge the money, definitely get the Laura Mercier. If you want a comparable setting powder for cheaper, the NYX is the way to go. For poreless (and compact/ready to go), definitely go for the Too Faced Pressed Powder. Though I probably already found the holy grail of loose setting powders, if you have a grail pressed setting powder, let me know! I still need one that I can depend on!

Thanks for reading!

Disclaimer: I was NOT sponsored to write anything in this post.

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  • Tasha

    Awesome post! Powdering my skin is a must. I’ve heard sooo many good things about the LM powder and definitely think one day I’ll have to invest! The others sound pretty ho-hum so I think I’d save and just invest for the best haha!

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

    • Tiny Taurus

      I would say the NYX is definitely comparable, just hold your breath when applying 😛 BUT YES, get Laura Mercier!!!

  • Ambi

    Wow this is such a informative post. Powder is must for my skin because i have very oily skin. I have used the Laura Mercier one and really liked it. As long as they have matte finish i am ok with any brand 🙂 x

    • Tiny Taurus

      Yep! These are all matte finishes! And LM is awesome for oily skin. It has my heart 🙂

  • Vesna Markovic

    Great post! I hope I’ll get LM one day, but will try Nyx for sure!

  • Jemini Wong

    I’ve been looking for a good setting powder for a long long time! I love this post, I definitely need to try out Laura Mercier. The price though…hawpppp!



  • Amy

    Great honest reviews! I have had the MAC one for an eternity but it really cakes up, I would replace it but it wasn’t cheap so I resent it. I think I’ll give the NYX one a whirl in the meantime. – Amy

  • Abi

    I need that LM loose powder in my life.. I have the most oily skin! Although I’ve discovered lately that applying powder with a damp beauty blender keeps the oil at bay for a lot longer 🙂

    • Tiny Taurus

      I’ve never heard of that! I’ll give it a try 🙂

  • Lauren Howard

    Great post!! I just gave in and bought the Laura Mercier setting powder, and I am SO glad I did, even though it is so pricey 🙁 I LOVE it <3