Makeup Monday–powder

Ok, I know what you’re thinking: Powder??? Really? This isn’t the 40’s!  Just hear me out.  

Here is my list of make-up basics. These are the minimum items that I wear when I’m running out of the house and not planning on seeing anyone I know (which automatically means I will see someone I know. Probably an old boyfriend or someone that will make me wish I looked way better than I do):
Concealer for under the eyes (you might not need this, but I sure do)
Sometimes mascara so my eyes don’t look too beady.

When I’m wearing full makeup I usually wear foundation because the face is mostly made up of skin (in case you hadn’t noticed).  So making that skin look good is a big deal.  Maybe you have really great skin (I think mine is pretty decent), or maybe you need a lot of help.  Either way that’s what foundation is for.  It evens things out and covers lots of imperfections. We’ll talk about that next week.  But I always use powder whether or not I use foundation.

Powder just puts a gauzy layer over your skin.  It’s not going to cover anything major, but it evens things out a little bit.  Worn over foundation and blush and concealer it also sets your makeup to keep your everything staying put and lasting longer.  It’s the finishing touch for your skin.

Most importantly powder keeps the shine to a minimum.  I know the “dewy” look is really popular these days.  But there is a fine line between “dewy” and “greasy”.  I don’t want to go anywhere near “greasy”. Powder is the ideal solution.


There are two kind of powder: loose and in a compact.  Loose used to be a really big deal back in the day (think of cartoons where the character is patting her nose with a big powder puff), but it’s a big pain and super messy.  I always stick with powder in a compact. That’s the form you’ll find most powders in.

The good news is that there aren’t huge differences between brands of powder.  It’s quite sheer so the color and coverage won’t be tremendously different.  Most cheapo brands will be fine.  But there is one brand that has stolen my heart: Stila.  It’s one of those fancy-pants brands.  I love the Sheer Pressed Powder a lot.  A really huge lot.  Because it has really lovely coverage (for a powder.  It’s still sheer, remember!) but it doesn’t settle into fine lines or look cakey.  It’s $28 if you buy it online or at Sephora or Ulta.  But because of the magic of ebay you can get it for much cheaper.  

Here’s the way powder works:  it comes in a compact which is the plastic or metal holder with the makeup, the little mirror and powder puff/sponge/applicator.  The drug store brands give you the powder in a disposable plastic compact.  You use it up then throw it all away. But the fancy department store brands know that they have to make you feel special.  So their powder usually comes in a nicer compact that’s refillable.  The refills are cheaper, obviously.

I bought my first Stila powder in the compact on ebay (brand new in the box) for $11.  It comes in a cute embossed tin.  Jasper decided to scratch away all my powder with his fingernail last week so I had to buy a new refill. I got a brand new one on ebay for $5.99.  That’s cheaper than the drug store brands!  So don’t let the fact that it’s “fancy” scare you off.  Do, however, find someplace to try it first.  The first Stila powder I bought was in the palest color they make which is called “fair”.  I’m frighteningly pale so I usually can buy the fairest color and it suits me just fine (if it isn’ too dark, that is).  But good gosh almighty, that “fair” color is white!  I can’t imagine how pale you’d have to be to wear it (perfect if you’re a geisha!)  So I bought a refill in “light” (the next darker color) and it’s perfect. So let than be a lesson: don’t buy anything unless you try it first (or can return it).  Check the store’s return policy before you buy!  Obviously if you buy something from ebay you’re stuck with it.

| Filed under Makeup and Hair

5 thoughts on “Makeup Monday–powder

  1. I've been out of town and pregnant and anemic and doing a lot of napping… so it's nice to spend some time catching up on you and your blog. I love that I can hear you in your posts and it makes me think that we should be friends… except that we already are. So, anyway, I just bought some mineral powder that is supposed to be like a powder and foundation. I will let you know if it is life-shattering. It probably won't be, but maybe it will be a way for me to get out of using foundation. Happy Monday!

  2. I have been wearing Clinique powder since I was 15…and since, let's face it, I am not getting any younger, I have been looking for a more "adult" powder that does well on older skin. I am totally going to try Stila, so thanks!!

  3. Powder, huh? I hardly ever use it. Although lately I've noticed in pictures how shiny my nose and forehead are, so I've been trying to remember to use it. Not very successfully.

    I have a loose powder but with a grate over the powder so you put the puff up against it and shake it upside down like a salt shaker. I like the loose powder cause it makes me feel like a 40's movie star. But the grate keeps me from making quite as huge of a mess.

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