Honestly, I didn't like the the Benefit The Professional License To Blot Stick (P1,100) the first few times I used it. It made no sense to me because it's a balm mattifier - meaning, it's balmy and emollient, so it's an odd choice for mattifying the skin. It's an oxymoron! Besides, it always decimated the makeup I had underneath whenever I attempted to retouch with it.
All of this animosity though existed only because I didn't know how to use it correctly. Yes my dears, sometimes we are just plain wrong. Even hapless professional beauty writers such as myself make silly mistakes! That being said I now love the hell out of this blotting stick. It really does work in mattifying the skin longer than your average powder can.
The trick in applying this correctly is mind-blowingly simple: just pat it on instead of swiping. That's it. The first instinct is to swipe a balm product to "activate it" but actually this formula is loaded with oil-absorbent waxes and silicates. Gently patting this stick on a shiny area is enough to blot it. The area stays matte for about 4-5 hours (depends on how oily you are) versus powders which keeps me shine-free for a maximum of 3-4 hours.
Aside from taking down shine, the License To Blot Stick also has a blurring effect on pores. Remember, it has silicates, which are effective in filling in those tiny holes. This stick can also be used as a primer before makeup if you want the products to stay longer on your face.
I also love its compact size and triangular shape. This stick is easy to slip into any bag, plus I can blot with it even without a mirror. I find it amazing that I can blot on the spot with it!
The catch: License To Blot does not wick the oil from the skin; it just neutralises the appearance of it. If you have dry skin this is a good thing since the oil is important in keeping your skin hydrated. If you have very oily skin, you are better off with an oil-blotting paper.
As I have combination skin, this works for me quite well. I like the convenience of it more than anything; it simplifies the blotting process and does not require a mirror, sponge, or a brush to properly use! I recommend you grab the Benefit The Professional License To Blot Stick if you want to retouch with something "pore-filling" and slick. The novelty is exciting but not necessary, so it's up to your preference in the end.