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As of late, full coverage powder foundation is having a moment, but the downside to these skin-perfecting formulas is that they’re often fussy, and can leave your skin looking cakey within a couple hours of wear. This ultimately lends itself to your skin looking anything but flawless. Unless you’re going to a short event or are planning on taking photos, many full-coverage foundations simply aren’t practical for all-day wear. Plus, if you have textured, mature or dry skin these thicker products can actually highlight problem areas rather than camouflaging them – an effect that presumably no one is keen on achieving.
With warmer weather just around the corner, it makes sense that seemingly every beauty brand is dropping a powder version of their flagship full coverage liquid foundation. These counterparts are fuss-free, shine-controlling versions that blur imperfections, keep sun-induced shine at bay and make on-the-go application easier. But while many powder bases claim to offer light-diffusing, Instagram filter level blurring powers, and complexion-perfecting properties, these claims fall flat unless you commit to applying the product wet. While this is a solid method for achieving a full coverage finish, it’s not only time-consuming but can also leave your powder damaged on account of moisture from your damp sponge or brush.
Of course, applying a creamy concealer under your powder is a fool-proof method for adding additional coverage to areas of concern. But if you’re looking for a multi-functional, one-stop-shop sort of a product, we’ve discovered some full coverage powder foundations that actually conceal, blur, and smooth all on their own. And while powder formulas are generally considered to be exclusively suitable for oily and combination skin types, these next-generation foundations are capable of complimenting textured, extra-dry, and mature skin types as well thanks to innovative formula upgrades, including the addition of hydrating skincare ingredients and light-diffusing pigments.
IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Foundation Powder
IT Cosmetics’ best-selling CC Cream is a standout cult classic sworn by from fans with a wide variety of skin types. Now, you can reap the same full coverage effects of the O.G. formula in a travel-friendly powder. Unlike some opaque powder bases, this one doesn’t leave the skin overly matte or dewey — it’s offers a nice satin finish that looks like actual skin.
$37.50 at QVC
Milani Conceal + Perfect Shine Proof Powder Foundation
This mattifying powder is a godsend for oily skin types thanks to infusion of pore-tightening Lily extract. This velvet-soft powder feels weightless on the skin, and you can get medium coverage applied with the included applicator with one layer or build up to full with a second layer or flat top kabuki brush. Because if its lightweight formula, it’s also a great handbag companion for touch-ups and taming down excess shine throughout the day.
$10.99 at Walgreens
Kat Von D Beauty Lock-It Powder Foundation
Just like the extreme-coverage liquid version, the Lock-It Powder Foundation delivers some serious face-transforming coverage and budge-proof staying power. This matte powder is formulated with rice powder to blur the appearance of pores, texture and fine lines for a soft focus finish that looks (almost) as flawless as the “Subtle” filter on IG stories without leaving your skin parched or cakey.
$36 at Kat Von D Beauty
Maybelline Super Stay Full Coverage Powder Foundation
This drugstore companion to the original liquid version is best applied with a powder brush or dampened beauty sponge. It deliver highlight pigmented opaque full coverage with two years. It’s super finely milled and soft, so there is a lot of dust kickback when you apply it, but once on the skin, it feels comfortable and breathable. While I would say this lasts more like 6-10 hours as opposed to its claim of 24-hour wear, it’s a great affordable option for an event.
Glo Skin Beauty Pressed Face Powder
This skincare-infused pressed powder dusts on evenly allowing you to build up to a pretty solid level of coverage with just one layer (seriously, it doubles as a concealer). I have combination-oily skin and this gives me a satin finish with just a hint of luminosity, but according to fellow fans in the reviews it works like a dream on mature and dry skin types as well. Because it’s a mineral based powder, I suggest applying it with a powder brush if you’re looking to avoid a mask-like effect.
$50 at Dermstore
Wander Beauty Wanderlust Powder Foundation
This Instagram-famous powder foundation glides on the face smoothly and can be built up to full coverage with a second layer. It absorbs excess oils and combats shine but manages to feel hydrating thanks to a blend of moisturizing additives including aloe and hibiscus. Because it’s so lightweight it adds coverage without a masking effect, so you get an even base that looks flawless without looking cakey.
$40 at Sephora
Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay in Place Powder Foundation
The O.G. liquid Double Wear foundation is a cult favorite thanks to its unrivaled staying power and skin-perfect formula that seriously stays put. The powder version offers the same medium to full coverage as the original formula, but it in a on-the-go friendly mirrored compact. Though it’s touted for its oil-controlling magical powers, it doesn’t emphasize texture, dry patches, or fine lines, making it a versatile powder for most skin types. According to some reviews we’ve read online, it’s also great for ultra dry skin or those suffering from the side effects of retinol, as it doesn’t accentuate peeling or flaking skin.
$42 at Nordstrom
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