While powders are easily overlooked in the grand scheme of countless beauty innovations that hit the shelves, their place in a solid makeup routine is unshakable. Be it to mop up shine, blur out pores or simply to help makeup stay put better, longer, a light dusting of the right powder can make all the difference, especially in our humidity. Best part? Thanks to new formulation breakthroughs and application techniques, powders are increasingly becoming the new makeup essential to achieve a flawless, glowing canvas. Here,10 high-performance powders that truly stand the test of time:
#1 By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra-Powder, $89
The first thing you notice about this loose powder is the almost-refreshing sensation you get when the powder comes in contact with your skin. Made with micronised hyaluronic acid and silica microbeads, it instantly plumps fine lines and minimises the appearance of enlarged pores so skin texture remains smooth, feels supple to the touch and has a soft matte finish.
#2 Fenty Invisimatte Blotting Powder, $44
We’ll just put it out there: if it’s good enough for Rihanna, it sure is good enough for us. And even though we may not be getting our photos taken by the paparazzi any time soon, it couldn’t possible hurt to slay like she does with flawless skin. Made with women with oily skin in mind, this mattifying powder instantly eliminates shine and can be brushed over makeup without shifting or smudging it. It is also suitable for all skin tones as it goes onto skin without a trace and doesn’t cake, clog pores or settle into fine lines.
#3 Guerlain Météorites Compact Powder, $89
The French maison’s Météorites needs no introduction. Known to impart an enviable soft glow on virtually every skin tone, the iconic pearls are finely pressed into this palette of pastel shades in a pearlescent finish. Both colour-correcting and light-enhancing, a few light sweeps of this compact instantly lights up the complexion for an airbrushed effect.
#4 Hourglass Ambient Strobe Lighting Powder, $62
Want a naturally luminescent finish, as opposed to a matte one? This pressed powder works both as a finishing powder or a subtle highlighter, thanks to its formula of ultra-fine micro pearl particles which reflect and refract light at varying degrees for a naturally luminous finish. Sweep over the tops of your cheekbones, nose bridge, forehead and cupid’s bow to subtly sculpt your features.
#5 Innisfree No Sebum Mineral Powder, $10
Indispensable for those who are plagued with shine-prone skin, this mineral powder has an ultra-fine texture that disappears onto skin to soak up excess shine so your complexion stays matte. Made with natural minerals and mint harvested from Jeju island, it also helps to balance sebum and moisture levels over time. We also love that its handy size makes it super convenient to carry around for touch-ups on the go.
#6 IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Powder, $48
Combining skin-conditioning ingredients, optical-blurring properties and skin-refining benefits, this all-in-one pressed powder if your best bet if you have combination skin that’s showing early signs of ageing. Made of finely-milled micro silk powder, it reduces the appearances of pores while setting makeup. In addition, it is also infused with peptides and hydrolysed collagen to keep skin plump for a smooth and poreless finish.
#7 Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder, $69
Iconic to the brand, this setting powder has been its best-sellers for years and has racked up a considerable amount of beauty awards all over the world. According to Laura Mercier, the brand founder, application is key. She swears by applying the powder with the Velour Puff (sold separately): firstly, press the puff into the loose powder, then rub the puff to get rid of excess powder before pressing it onto the skin in a rolling motion. This ensures that only a thin layer of powder is applied so the skin’s natural texture still shows through for a your-skin-but-better effect.
#8 Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Loose Powder, $61
A little goes a long way with this professional-grade loose powder. Created to help its wearers look perfect with the latest HD technology of the film and TV industry, it is made with spherical micro particles of silica to give skin a velvety smooth finish and a natural glow. We also love that its mesh design helps control the amount of product dispensed and prevent spillage.
#9 NYX #nofilter Finishing Powder, $28
Hands up if you only post filter free selfies of yourself on Instagram. Nobody? Neither did we—until we tried this super smooth and fine-textured powder. Formulated with a special blend of silica and mica, a thin layer of this is all your need to hold makeup in place while giving it a soft-focus effect so the appearance of imperfections are diminished.
#10 RCMA The Original No-Color Powder, about $16.30, at Beautylish
A favourite amongst Hollywood makeup artists for many years, you can count on this for picture perfect skin. Made with a blend of talc and silica, it repels sebum and moisture so your makeup stays put for hours on end without caking, creasing, smudging or fading. It is also formulated without any colour pigments so it goes on invisibly and is perfect for all skin tones. To apply, all you have to do is swirl a large powder brush and tap of excess product before dusting it lightly all over your face.
Text: Kimberly Ong / Additional reporting: Arissa Ha