Makeup Products » Best Setting Powders

15 Best Setting Powders in 2023 for Flawless Makeup

The Glowsly editors independently test and choose the best products. We may receive commissions on purchases made from the affiliate links.

Primer and setting spray may have stolen the spotlight, but setting powder is still the MVP when it comes to helping your makeup last. A setting powder will lock your foundation into place, keeping you looking put together even as your skin produces oil or gets sweaty throughout the day. 

We’re profiling the setting powders that go above and beyond. Not only will these powders keep your base looking flawless for hours, but they’re lightweight with additional benefits like blurring the pores or enhancing your skin’s luminosity. No matter your approach to makeup or your skin type, read on to find your perfect powder. 

Best setting powders overview:

How we chose the best setting powders

To compile this list, we researched manufacturer specifications, including finish, coverage, shades, and more, to create a short list of the top setting powders. Then, we combed through detailed product descriptions, swatches ratings, and reviews to find the best setting powder for each category.

Our picks for the best setting powders

Best overall
Huda Beauty Easy Bake Loose Baking & Setting Powder

What we love

  • Balanced natural finish
  • Versatile
  • Excellent shade range

What we don’t love

  • Slightly messy packaging

Our top pick, Huda Beauty Easy Bake Loose Baking & Setting Power, is extremely light and silky, with a balanced natural finish. It prevents greasiness without necessarily making the skin look flat, so all skin types can enjoy it. 

Regardless of how you like using a setting powder 504, this particular product can work for everyone. It’s just as effective for light setting as brightening the undereye area. The massive shade range is surprising since it really is a low-coverage formula. It means you have room to play around with tints, especially if you need a bit of color correction. 

The mesh sifter helps keep the powder feeling even finer, although we wish it came with a lid to prevent too much product from falling through.

Shades: 9 | Type: Loose | Finish: Natural | Coverage: Sheer

Best budget
Wet n Wild Photo Focus Loose Setting Powder

What we love

  • Soft matte finish
  • Lightweight and non-cakey
  • Pore-blurring photo focus effect

What we don’t love

  • Not great for dry skin

This super light drugstore setting powder is our top choice for budget-conscious shoppers. It’s incredibly silky and fine with a soft skin mattifying effect perfect for those with combination or oily skin. It’s also perfectly named because it has a dramatic pore-blurring effect. That said, it may be a little too matte if you have very dry skin. 

While this Wet n Wild powder is only available in three shades, it’s very sheer, so it won’t significantly alter your skin tone. When deciding on the right shade for you, it’s just about choosing the right undertone for your skin. It’s also fragrance-free, which is ideal for those with sensitive skin.

Shades: 3 | Type: Loose | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Sheer

Best drugstore
Maybelline Fit Me! Loose Finishing Powder

What we love

  • Affordable
  • Smoothing effect
  • Lightly enhances coverage

What we don’t love

  • Finding your shade match can be difficult

Maybelline’s Fit Me! line is a consistent favorite when it comes to affordable complexion products, and this loose powder is no different. This lightly tinted blend has weightless coverage — just enough to perfect your skin as it sets makeup in place. 

Made with a simple blend of talc, dimethicone, and silica, it gives the skin a beautifully smooth finish while absorbing excess oils. The finish is soft-matte, perfect for oily, combination, or balanced skin.  

It comes in eight shades, which we think is more than enough for such a low-coverage formula. That said, Maybelline doesn’t provide the best swatches or shade descriptions, so finding the right color for you might be a little difficult.

Shades: 8 | Type: Loose | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Light

Best pressed
Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish

What we love

  • Skin-blurring effect
  • Luminous but natural finish
  • Gorgeous, convenient compact

What we don’t love

  • Pricey

If you’ve ever wanted to feel like an Old Hollywood starlet when touching up your makeup, this golden compact will help. The pressed format makes for a powder convenient to have with you on the go, and the design makes it a lot of fun to pull out in public. 

It might be pricey, but it delivers a beautiful finish. This finely milled powder has a lovely pore-blurring effect and a naturally luminous finish that’s particularly flattering under the eyes. It’s an excellent option for most skin types, especially if trying to avoid the overly matte powdered look. It comes in four sheer shades that work well across many skin tones.

Shades: 4 | Type: Pressed | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best splurge
Givenchy Prisme Libre Setting & Finishing Loose Powder

What we love

  • Invisible on the skin
  • Smoothing and blurring effect
  • Excellent shade range

What we don’t love

  • Expensive
  • Fragrance can be an issue

This stunning and unique setting powder is worth the splurge. This unusual product is made up of four powders of different shades that blend to set the complexion flawlessly. There are six shade blends to choose from, and Givenchy’s sample photos make it easy to find your match. 

The colors themselves aren’t noticeable on the skin, and frankly, neither is the powder — it’s smoothing and subtle, with a finely milled texture that disappears into the foundation. The powder’s subtle scent adds to the luxury experience but could be an issue for some.

Shades: 6 | Type: Loose | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best for oily skin
Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

What we love

  • Mattifies well
  • Very long-lasting
  • Universal shades

What we don’t love

  • A little too matte for current trends

For years, Laura Mercier’s translucent setting powder was unsurpassed. The original color is genuinely translucent, so it works for all skin tones and leaves the skin matte but not dry. Nowadays, it’s also available in honey and medium-deep shades to better accommodate warm and deep skin tones. 

It’s exceptional for the “baking” technique of setting undereye concealer, helping to create truly budge-proof makeup. It absorbs sebum well, which makes it excellent for oily skin types. 

However, the matte look just isn’t as popular as it once was, and many brands have released equally impressive options. That said, if you’re still after a powder that mattifies well, you can’t go wrong with the classic.

Shades: 3 | Type: Loose | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Sheer

Best glowy finish
Rare Beauty Always an Optimist Soft Radiance Setting Powder

What we love

  • Gives a radiant, glowy finish
  • Feels very light on the skin
  • Clever, mess-free container

What we don’t love

  • A little pricey

This gorgeous powder from Rare Beauty gives the skin a natural, skin-like finish as it sets your base. It’s a talc-free formula with a touch of mica. It almost looks like a highlighter in the container, but once on the skin, it gives a subtle strobed glow with some blurring. 

It still absorbs oils and prevents excess sheen without making the skin look dry. The powder is designed to be very light and unfelt on the skin, so it’s perfect if you don’t like the feel of most setting powders.

The container even has a “locking” panel covering the sifter, which is a convenient touch that prevents mess. The price seems quite reasonable for a mid-to-high-end brand, although it only comes with a small amount of product.

Shades: 5 | Type: Loose | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best budget pressed powder
NYX High Definition Finishing Powder

What we love

  • Beautiful finishing effect
  • Very light
  • Subtle matte finish

What we don’t love

  • May cause flashback in photos

If you’re on a tight budget and you don’t like the mess of a loose powder, NYX delivers an HD powder that sets and diffuses the skin beautifully. This formula softens the look of fine lines and pores with a dose of silky dimethicone. It’s otherwise sheer and light on the skin, with a subtle matte finish that controls oils but will work across skin types. 

Some reviewers did note that the translucent shade can have a bit of a white cast in photos taken with flash. If you over-apply, this is more of an issue, so we’d recommend skipping this powder for baking — especially in the evening. Thankfully, the banana shade works well with warmer or deeper skin tones.

Shades: 3 | Type: Pressed | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Sheer

Best budget glow
ELF Halo Glow Setting Powder

What we love

  • Budget-friendly
  • Beautiful glow
  • Excellent shade range

What we don’t love

  • May not work for oily skin

This powder delivers if you’re after that luxurious, dewy finish but you’re on a budget. A blend of mica and synthetic sapphire gives the skin a radiant finish, while tapioca starch keeps unwanted greasiness at bay. That said, if your skin is oily, you’ll probably notice a strong sheen towards the end of the day. 

It’s available in six shades. Some are more tinted than others to suit all skin tones, but the light pink shade has gone viral on all skin tones for its amazing brightening effect under the eyes.

Shades: 6 | Type: Loose | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best shade range
Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Setting Powder

What we love

  • Soft matte finish
  • Large shade range
  • Creamy, soft texture

What we don’t love

  • Jar can be confusing

Looking for a powder that’ll mattify, diffuse, and slightly amp up your foundation? Even though it’s designed to mattify, this formula is infused with dimethicone and squalane that add an almost creamy feel. That means that while it controls oils, it’s not likely to dry out the skin or cause creasing unless you’re extremely dry. 

Where Fenty excels is with its shade range. Not only are there eight shades to choose from, but there are also thorough descriptions for each shade to simplify the selection process. The packaging is designed with a custom cap that prevents a mess, but many shoppers miss it and find the jar difficult to use.

Shades: 8 | Type: Loose | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Light

Best for dry skin
Hourglass Veil Translucent Setting Powder

What we love

  • Gives the skin a soft glow
  • All-day wear
  • Excellent for dry skin

What we don’t love

  • Only 1 shade
  • Pricey

This luxurious setting powder is infused with diamonds to reflect light and illuminate the skin while guaranteeing that your foundation will last all day. The talc-free formula is very light, working well under the eyes, even for dry skin. 

That said, it’s only available in one shade. While Hourglass suggests it’ll suit all skin tones, we don’t think that’s totally accurate. You’ll probably want to use it sparingly or only over areas you’d like brightened if you have a deeper skin tone.

Shades: 1 | Type: Loose | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best for large pores
It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Pressed Setting Powder

What we love

  • Extreme skin-blurring effect
  • Doesn’t change color of foundation
  • Convenient compact

What we don’t love

  • Can have slight flashback

This setting powder works magic if you have visible pores. This blend of silica and primer-like emollients create the most dramatic soft-focus effect we’ve seen, helping to diminish the prominence of texture significantly.

Otherwise, this formula doesn’t impart any coverage and isn’t particularly visible on the skin, which is ideal if you’re happy with your foundation’s coverage level. That said, this formula can have some flashback, so we don’t recommend it for nighttime events where there might be flash photography.

Shades: 3 | Type: Pressed | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Sheer

Best glowy pressed powder
Kosas Cloud Set Setting Powder

What we love

  • Convenient pressed format
  • Excellent for dry skin
  • Large shade range

What we don’t love

  • Very firm texture

Give Cloud Set a try if you’re not into messy loose formulas but want an illuminating setting powder. This powder has a glow that registers as dewy, perfect for dry skin and even includes nourishing ingredients. Because it comes in a pressed format, it’s easy to carry with you for touch-ups. 

The shade range is massive, especially considering it’s a fairly low-coverage formula. Some reviewers mentioned that it’s quite firm in the pan and can sometimes develop a hard film after a few months of use.

Shades: 10 | Type: Pressed | Finish: Radiant | Coverage: Sheer

Best SPF powder
Supergoop! (Re)setting 100% Mineral Powder SPF 35

What we love

  • Amps up your sun protection
  • Matte and oil-controlling
  • Convenient on the go

What we don’t love

  • Confusing container
  • Not ideal for dry skin

This multi-tasker will set your foundation and amp up your sun protection, so it’s a fantastic choice for daily use — especially if you’re out in the sun all day. Research shows that while relying on SPF in makeup alone isn’t sufficient, layering makeup with SPF over your favorite sunscreen will give you a real protective boost. 

This mattifying formula will also help keep you dry and shine-free, ideal for oily skin or hot days. That said, those with dry skin may find it a little cakey. The built-in brush packaging can be confusing at first, so read the dispensing instructions carefully to avoid wasting powder. Once you get the hang of it, it’s very convenient to have with you for reapplications.

Shades: 4 | Type: Loose | Finish: Matte | Coverage: Sheer

Best clean
BareMinerals Mineral Veil Setting Powder

What we love

  • Clean, minimalist formula
  • Excellent oil control
  • 3 finish options

What we don’t love

  • Pricey

If you prefer natural formulas, you’ll fall in love with this talc-free setting powder. This minimal formula is silky and very effective at setting makeup in place. Its main ingredient is corn starch, which is extremely effective at preventing oils from peaking through over the course of the day. 

The original, soft matte formula is available in two sheer shades. Nowadays, it’s also available in a hydrating or luminous finish with a universal tint that’ll suit most skin tones. The only drawback is that it’s fairly pricey for a small amount of product.

Shades: 2 | Type: Loose | Finish: 3 options | Coverage: Sheer

Set to last 

From high-end to the drugstore, the setting powders on the market today are incredible. Our top pick from Huda Beauty is a versatile, silky, and long-lasting option. Thanks to its balanced finish, it looks great on nearly anyone who tries it. That said, don’t forget to take your style and skin type into account, because with so many powders to choose from, we’re spoiled for choice.  

How to pick the right setting powder for you

The key factor to consider when shopping is the finish you prefer, but other factors like format and ingredients are also worth considering. 


  • Matte. Powders with a matte finish do an excellent job of absorbing excess oils and giving the skin a flat, non-shiny look. It used to be the go-to look back when setting powders were first introduced, but today most formulas are closer to “demi-matte” for a more natural-looking skin finish. These are best for those with oily skin.  
  • Luminous. Luminous powders look shimmery in the container but tend to look naturally dewy once applied to the skin. They’re an excellent choice if you have dry skin or prefer a glowy look. 
  • Natural. Neither matte nor glowy, these powders are designed to mimic the skin. It’s the most versatile option that’ll work for everyone. 

Loose vs. pressed

  • Pressed. Pressed powders are solid and usually come in compacts, so they’re very portable and easy to use. To make them solid, the powder usually has to be blended with some sort of binding emollient, which may impact the final overall look.
  • Loose. Loosed powders are a little messier to apply, but they usually offer a better bang for your buck when it comes to quantity. If you tend to use a lot of setting powder, they’re the better choice since you can pick up a lot of product with ease. That said, it can be a curse if you’re prone to over-applying. 


  • Starch. Starches from rice, tapioca, or corn give powders a very silky feel and excellent oil control. They’re a popular natural alternative to talc.  
  • Silica. Silica is a mineral that creates a dramatic blurring effect. It has the most beautiful finish but can flash back in photos if there’s too much of it in the product. 
  • Talc. Talcum powder is a controversial ingredient because of a history of asbestos contamination. However, FDA testing in recent years suggests that sourcing practices have improved and it’s no longer the issue it once was. 
  • Mica. Mica is a mineral ingredient with a natural glow and radiance. A lot of mica often correlates with a more glowy powder, but not always. It can flash back in photos depending on how much of it is used.  
  • Dimethicone. This silky silicone is a binder that’s normally found in pressed powders, but it’s also used in loose ones. When you see it in a formula, you can expect a smooth feel and excellent pore-blurring effects. 


Is translucent powder the same as setting powder? 

Translucent powder is a type of setting powder. Translucent powders are sheer and nearly colorless, meaning they’re meant to work on all skin tones without changing the shade of your foundation. Setting powders can also be tinted or a little more pigmented. 

Is loose or pressed powder better for setting?

Both options work well. The most significant benefit of a pressed powder is that it’s less messy and more portable, while loose powders tend to come in larger quantities (though not always). Some industry trends make loose powders a little more popular. For example, loose powders tend to have less pigmentation than pressed powders, which makes them a little more universal. 

Which powder is best for setting makeup?

This depends on your approach to makeup. Our top pick, Huda Beauty’s Easy Bake Loose Baking & Setting Powder, is a versatile option that will please most makeup lovers.