The Rundown: Setting Powders – Loose

Hey everybody!

Happy Wednesday! I haven’t done a Rundown in a bit, and I have been going wild lately with setting powders (i.e. hauling a crap ton and testing them out).

This edition of the Rundown – Setting Powders, will be split in 2: one on Loose Powders, and the other on Pressed.

Bonus…I may have a dupe for you guys in this one – keep reading!

I’ll split this post up into ‘translucent’ and ‘coloured’ powders, and how and when I like to use each.

Translucent Loose Setting Powders:


Laura Mercier Loose Translucent Setting Powder:

This is holy grail status, I think for everyone. I personally was not wowed but the more I used this powder, the more I started to love it. It has a hefty price tag, and so I will only purchase this during VIB Rouge sales – I’ll get to a dupe in a minute. If you want luxury in your setting powder, this is the one. You can live without it though.

Ben Nye Neutral Set Colourless Powder:

Ben Nye makes wonderful products, and I love their setting powders. You need to have a light hand with this though, especially because it can look white on my medium complexion.

elf HD Undereye Setting Powder:

I bought the new formulation of this, and it’s really great. Good for light touch ups under the eyes and I like using it on light makeup days.

RCMA No Colour Powder:

So this is another cult fave, and I don’t get why. It is insanely affordable at $15CAD. You cannot use this with a heavy hand, especially if you’re not fair. This is an okay powder.

NYC Smooth Skin Loose Powder:

So. Guys. This is a dupe for Laura Mercier’s loose powder. No joke. I love it. It has the same sort of bone coloured powder, and sets the undereyes beautifully. Even more awesome, it’s $5 CAD!! I had to go to 2 Wal-Mart’s to get this, but I finally found it, and nabbed 2.

NYX HD Setting Powder:

This is another tricky white powder. It can’t be packed on, but is super super super finely milled! I was surprised at that actually. It has a nice finish, again, if you use it lightly. The price is a little steep though, which makes it a pass for me ($15 CAD).

Coloured Loose Setting Powders:


Ben Nye Banana Powder:

Cult fave, famous by Kim K. All my medium/tan/deep ladies out there, this powder is your friend! I think everyone should have this powder and while the price can seem steep (that little thing cost me $15), you get so much product it’ll last you a good amount of time. I like to bake with this when I do a full face of glam.

Ben Nye Fair Loose Powder:

This powder is almost translucent, but has a little pink/bone colour to it. I was using this as an alternative to Laura Mercier’s powder – they aren’t dupes, by any means. It is decently milled, and does a nice job and works well on my medium skin. That giant container was only $15 CAD.

bareMinerals Loose setting powder in Summer Bisque:

I used to use this to set my undereyes. It’s fine – nothing to write home about.

elf SPF 45 Loose Powder Foundation:

While I wanted to love this powder, I can’t. It is nicely milled, has a bone colour, and is dirt cheap. However, I found it emphasizes dry skin and settles into lines. Steer clear.

elf HD Powder:

Folks have said this is a dupe for Ben Nye’s Banana Powder. It is not. It’s a highlighter yellow and I feel because of it’s bright colour it would not work on anybody’s skin tone. Not only that, it also settles into lines and is super powdery (as odd as that seems).


Overall – I think everyone should own some loose setting powder. Even if you have dry skin, there are always uses for loose setting powder. Whether it’s for a light setting of the face, or heavy undereye baking, there’s something for everyone in terms of colour, finish and price point.


Until next time,



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