Powder Up: Six awesome face powder recos for every budget

You might not realize it but face powders are the cornerstone of the basic makeup collection. Just think back to when you were just starting to discover makeup. It’s often the first kikay product you’re allowed to have as a teen, and it probably saved you from the sudden onslaught of oiliness that puberty brings. More than wearing lipstick, I felt very grown-up about opening up a compact and patting the puff on my face!

As we grow into adulthood and expand our beauty knowledge (and stash!), face powder takes on a different role in our regimen. Unlike powder foundations, which are pigmented and offer actual coverage, face powders are usually light and only slightly tinted. This makes them a great option for setting cream or liquid makeup, and touching up when your face begins to take on unwanted shine. To celebrate the workhorse of the makeup case, here are our six powder recos for every budget!

*Please click on the links to see full reviews

Shiseido Baby Powder (JPY 700 for a set of two, or roughly P175 each in Japanese drugstores like Matsumoto Kiyoshi)

If you’re heading to Japan this summer or know someone who will, make sure to include this in your haul! It’s a hot commodity in online stores, even though the chunky plastic case and included fuzzy puff is reminiscent of the type of face powder made for teens. It’s a fave among the most die-hard of beauty addicts because it gives great oil control and packs a whole lot of product in a single pan. And it’s incredibly cheap!

Essence All About Matt! Fixing Compact Powder (P269 at SM Beauty and Watsons stores)

If having perfectly matte skin and an easy to tote compact matters a great deal to you, then you will love this find! The finely-milled pressed powder has a velvety finish, and the simple yet sleek plastic case can slip into any kikay kit. Granted, the longevity of the mattifying effect is on the average side, but you can touch up anytime as the translucent white powder doesn’t actually affect the coloring of your BB or foundation.

Cathy Doll CC Powder Pact (P400 at select Watsons and 7-11)

CC powder? That’s some advanced shizz! But in a nutshell, it’s a brightening face powder with oil-control properties and enough coverage to slightly improve skin imperfections. It also offers a decent level of sun protection at SPF 40! The only caveat is that there are only two shades to choose from, and both run light.

Catrice Cosmetics Healthy Look Mattifying Powder (P499 at SM Beauty)

The diamond pattern and colorful design make this compact super attractive but it isn’t just the aesthetic that makes this compact a pleasant pick. When swirled together, all the pretty colors combine to create a translucent, satin effect that looks completely au naturel. It’s the sort of fancy-looking piece you wish you had sooner!

MUJI Loose Powder (P825 at MUJI)

Much like the other products that this popularly “nameless” Japanese brand is selling, their cosmetics line offers high-quality yet underrated finds. The fine powder comes on super-smooth and translucent, making it a solid mid-range option. For the eco-conscious, you’ll be glad to know that MUJI also sells refills in sachets and extra puffs, so you can reuse that canister and save on having to replenish your powder supply. If you want a more glowy finish, they also have Pearl Natural, which has shimmer.

Benefit The POREfessional Agent Zero Shine (P1,600 at Benefit)

I’ll admit it: loose powder is usually a pain in the butt to lug around. So here’s a product that makes it more mobile and easier to apply! The cleverly designed container features a small sifter that effectively locks the content in, and a built-in, retractable powder brush that detaches from the base. Smart presentation aside, the powder also banishes oil without looking cakey, so you can just brush a little on when you don’t have blotting paper on hand.

Are you the type who’s never without a face powder, no matter how tiny your purse is? Tell us what you’re currently using! And if you’re in the market for more loose powders, you can check out our under P600 recos.