Face Powder

Thursday, 13 March 2008

To set your make-up and minimize oiliness, many women (and men) use face powder. We find out more about adding this tool to our cosmetic arsenal.


The Basics

  • The main ingredient in face powders is talc. Silica gives the powder a silky feel and helps prevent the powders from taking in moisture.

  • Sometimes corn and/or rice starch is used in combination with talc, but often since these starches feed bacteria that can cause blemishes.

  • Face powder comes in two formats:

    • Loose powder, which is less portable than pressed powder, has an airy consistency and can be applied with a large fluffy brush, but is a little messier. It’s less likely to streak and doesn’t usually contain oil so good for normal to oily skin.

    • Pressed or compact powder, a solid cake with a sponge applicator, is easy to use for on-the-go touch-ups. They often contain oil to help keep it solid, and usually are colour tinted.

  • Finding the right colour can be tricky:

    • Translucent powders have no colour (though some may still have a little bit) and provide a sheer, matte finish on top of your foundation.

    • Colour-tinted powder should always match your foundation. If you have a winter shade and summer shade of foundation, you’ll also need two shades of powder.


We tested these powders with the help of some stage actors who are always dealing with shine-control.

Shine-Control Test

  • T. LeClerc and Rimmel both left our skin feeling a dry.

  • The Cargo was a big favourite

  • For Kristina, who’s skin is on the oily side, the Cargo caused breakouts. She liked the T. LeClerc, but not the price, so her second choice was the Rimmel.


As with many other make-up products, you should choose a powder that goes with your skin type. We liked both the Rimmel Stay Matte (for normal to oily complexions) and the Cargo powder.



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