Budget Beauty: Five powder foundations for summer under P400

We’re a generation of multitaskers, managing multiple aspects of life (career, family, love, and so on) while looking for the next frontier to our life’s adventure. It is inspiring, exhausting, and fun - it is the new norm. We even take the same approach with our makeup and skincare choices, opting for multipurpose products to save time, space, and money.

That said, powder foundations are the absolute must-have for the hyphenate woman who wants to look her best no matter how busy she gets. Heck, it’s a must-have for anyone, full stop. The right compact offers color correction, coverage for imperfections, and a matte finish to keep skin looking fresh even on scorchingly hot days. You can even use it to set your other base makeup for added coverage or make color adjustments to another base that’s a tad too dark or too light on you. Best of all: everything on our list is below P400!

Note: To give a more accurate portrayal of their coverage, I used the powder foundations on their own: no primers, correctors, or concealers. I'm currently experiencing a hormonal breakout (eep), so you can see clearly how the foundations fare with my blemishes.

Maybelline Clearsmooth All in One Foundation (refill size for P169 at Watsons)

If you tend to get heavy-handed with your powdering or need a quick retouch sans oil control sheets, Clearsmooth is a goof-proof solution to those issues. The finely-milled powder can be layered without it caking, and also has SPF 32 PA+++. to top up your protection. The refill comes in its own container and will fit into the tiniest purse, but the mirrored compact with applicator sponge is also very affordable at just P259.

Covergirl Ready, Set Gorgeous Fresh Complexion Powder Foundation (P395 at Watsons)

The vaguely egg-shaped compact is great to tote around for discreet touch-ups with its half-moon pan and sponge applicator. Coverage is sheer to medium and has a complexion brightening effect, but you’ll still need a layer of concealer to cover up hyperpigmentation and redness. The formula is non-comedogenic and oil-free with shine control properties, so it’s a good choice for oily skin types. 

Nichido Two Way Cake (P150 at Watsons)

If coverage isn’t a major concern (lucky you!), Nichido’s navy blue compact contains a two way cake that provides the subtlest color and mattifying effect. With several passes, it does effectively neutralize redness and brighten skin but the effect is so natural that it could pass off as a translucent powder. This is ideal for girls who prefer light makeup looks!

Silky Girl BB 2-Way Powder + Foundation (P249 at Landmark, Trinoma)

According to Silky Girl, this powder has skincare benefits just like a real BB! Aside from SPF 20 PA+, the formula contains a vitamin C derivative and vitamin E for brightening and moisturizing skin, respectively. The BB formula also creates a pronounced brightening effect, not to the point of looking like white cast but as more even skin tone and blurring of my blemishes. Since these products have been formulated for Asian skin, this Malaysian brand’s shade selection is perfectly suited for Filipinas. 

Ever Bilena Matte Two Way Cake (P169 at Watsons)

Though there are only three shades to choose from, the shades options are friendly to Pinay skin tones. There’s Matte White Ivory (fair with pink undertone), Matte Fair Oriental (light yellowish undertone), and Matte Golden Beige (morena-friendly beige). This can be built up to medium coverage but wearing just a light layer gives a satiny-matte finish that looks flattering on the skin.

From left: Nichido, Maybelline, Ever Bilena, Silky Girl, and Covergirl

Do you have a powder foundation in your arsenal? Which ones are able to keep up with your busy lifestyle?