10 Best Setting Powder for Dry Skin (That Hydrates)

Updated 5 years ago

People with dry skin don’t have enough oil and water on the outer layer of their skin, depriving it of moisture. Dry skin looks dull and flakey. A lot of setting powders absorb oil, making your skin even drier.

On the other hand, setting powders made for dry skin seals in hydration and makes foundation last longer. It prevents makeup from looking cakey while making your skin smooth and dewy.

If you have dry skin, check out the setting powders that we recommend in this list.

Our Top Picks for Setting Powders that Fight Dryness

To make your search easier, below are some of the top products that should be on your radar!

Smashbox Halo Hydrating Perfecting Powder

This is a hybrid of a foundation and setting powder, allowing you to take advantage of two products in one. It has a luminous and natural finish. One of the unique features of this product is the powderizer that is built-in. This will allow you to grind only the right amount for every application. So, the bottom part remains compact and only after grinding it will become loose powder. The formula is weightless, which is easy to absorb by the skin and won’t feel sticky, even when it is hot. It has a Mineral Boost Complex, which takes advantage of a combination of minerals, peptides, and amino acids, all of which will make the skin youthful and radiant. If you need sheer to medium coverage, this one does the job!

DermaBlend Loose Setting Powder

The manufacturer claims that with the use of this setting powder, your makeup will last for up to 16 hours! This is a weightless translucent setting powder that can help to mattify your complexion. Regardless of your skin tone, you will be happy to know that it is available in three shades – original translucent, cool beige, and warm saffron. It is also good to know that the powder has been tested and approved by dermatologists, guaranteeing that your skin won’t suffer from irritation with its use. For its application, the manufacturer suggests that you pat the powder generously over your makeup or foundation. After two minutes, buff the powder using a clean makeup brush.

L’Oréal Paris Hydra Perfecte Loose Powder

This is a translucent and silky loose setting powder that provides perfect coverage to make your makeup longer-lasting. It is also a good thing that it already comes with an applicator puff that makes it easy to set the powder on your face. When applied, more than just making the makeup smoother, it can also effectively hide your large pores. It has special moisturizers, which will be effective in hydrating your dry skin. For the shades, there are three choices – light, medium, and translucent.

Terry Hyaluronic Hydra Powder

One of the best things about this product is that it uses hyaluronic acid as one of its main ingredients. Aside from reducing the appearance of pores, it also works to moisturize the skin, making it non-drying. It is extra-smoothing, allowing it to correct the face in multiple zones for smoother makeup and flawless skin. To add, it has a matte invisible finish that enhances the look of your foundation instead of overpowering it. Many of its users were also happy with how lightweight and easy to absorb the powder is.

Kat Von D Lock-It Setting Powder

The company developed an innovative formula that makes this setting powder up to 45% lighter compared to most of its leading competitors. It is silky and non-drying, which is possible because of a feature known as Micro Blurring Technology. The latter will diffuse the pores and give your face a velvet matte finish, always ready for the camera! The translucent shade is universal, so this will work on your face regardless of your skin tone. It is also vegan and cruelty-free, so you can be sure that it is made without hurting animals. The powder is tested only in humans.

Elizabeth Mott Loose Face Setting Powder

The shade of this setting powder will specifically work for people who have medium to dark skin tones. If you have a light skin tone, the color will end up being too dark. The manufacturer highlights how their powder is selfie-ready, so you can expect that you will look good in pictures, even when there is a flash involved! According to the manufacturer, it will make a great choice for baking techniques while making sure that your foundation or makeup will not end up with creases. It also does not contain talc and silica. Plus, the powder has not been tested on animals.

Joli Noir No Color Loose Setting Powder

According to the company, they use only premium ingredients, so you can be confident that it will not cause any form of irritation. It is free of harsh chemicals that can cause adverse effects. The powder is available in a travel-friendly size, so it can easily fit on your bag. While the manufacturer notes that it is great for controlling the production of oil, this will work even for people who have dry skin. The powder has no color, so it will look good in a variety of foundations and skin tone while making sure that you will look natural.

Lagure Translucent Setting Powder

This setting powder comes with sheer coverage and will make your makeup long lasting. It has micro-fine pigments that will be easy to absorb by the skin. It also fills out the creases in the skin to hide the dry spots. If you are unhappy with the use of the powder, you can get in touch with the manufacturer and they will issue an unconditional refund. As a bonus, it comes with a step-by-step guide on how to use the powder the right way. While it can be good on its own for people with dry skin, others recommended the use of a setting spray to add hydration to the skin.

NARS Light Reflecting Loose Setting Powder

Dullness is one of the most common consequences of having dry skin. That said, this loose setting powder will be able to extend a helping hand. It looks luminous in every light. This is possible because of the innovation called Photochromatic Technology, which allows the powder to adjust in all light conditions. It also makes the skin soft and silky. If you have fine lines and other signs of skin aging that you would like to hide, this setting powder can help. Although, you have to use it along with the right concealer or foundation.

Ben Nye Neutral Set Setting Powder

If you plan to do flash photography, this can be an excellent product to use because it does not show up even when there is a flash. It is also colorless, so it will show the true color of your skin, foundation, or makeup. Regardless of your skin tone, the setting powder will easily blend while also looking natural. For those who would like to avoid talc, however, this may not be a good choice since it lists talc as one of the main ingredients used in this setting powder.

Should People with Dry Skin Still Use Powder?

YES! Even if your skin is dry, you can use powder makeup. You should be focusing on a skincare routine that moisturizes and reduces dry and scaley skin already. Using hydrating serums and moisturizers, like those that contain hyaluronic acid, will give an extra boost of moisture. On a weekly basis, you should also use an exfoliator to get rid of dead skin cells. Follow that with a hydrating face mask and your skin will feel baby soft and smooth.

Of course, it's worth mentioning that all of the powders mentioned above have added hydrating ingredients to keep cakiness and flakes at bay. Always make sure to avoid powders that will zap oils away from your skin.

What Makes a Setting Powder Different?

There are two basic forms of setting powders – loose and pressed.

A lot of people prefer pressed because it's easier to apply. It is designed to set the skin and to hold foundation. It also reduces the shine and stickiness of the foundation. Some people use it for touching up their makeup.

It is different from a finishing powder in the sense that the latter is applied to the top of the makeup of the foundation instead of being the base. It smoothens the skin to hide the flaws, such as large pores. A setting powder is also applied to the top of the foundation, but the main purpose is to build coverage and improve the finish instead of masking imperfections.

Choosing a Setting Powder for Dry Skin

To end up with the right choice and make sure that the setting powder will be effective, below are some of the most important factors to consider:

  • Ingredients: Some of the best ingredients to keep your skin hydrated include hyaluronic acid, shea butter, and coconut oil. Take the time to make sure that there are no harsh chemicals that will dry out your skin.
  • Form: Generally, you can choose from loose or compact. A loose powder that is finely milled can fill the creases of your dry skin better than a compact powder can. Pressed or compact form, on the other hand, will be easier to control.
  • Shade: You should pick a setting powder that matches your skin tone. You can choose between translucent or colored setting powder. Translucent setting powder is best if you will use it for setting makeup or finishing your look. Colored powders are best for masking discolorations.

Applying Setting Powder the Classic Way

Make sure you use a setting powder to its full potential. Follow the steps below to apply it properly.

  1. Apply a primer to boost hydration and smooth out any creases in your skin
  2. Apply your foundation 
  3. If you are using a concealer, apply it after the foundation. If there are dark spots and other imperfections that you would like to hide, use a concealer.
  4. Apply the setting powder using a sponge. Powder puffs will help to make it easier to blend the powder on your skin.
  5. Alternatively, you can apply the setting powder using a brush if it is in loose form.
  6. When applying the setting powder, make sure that you start in the middle of your face. Slowly move it towards the outer parts of the face. Do this gently. Applying too much pressure will remove the foundation and the concealer.

How to Prevent Your Skin from Drying Out

  • Stay away from harsh ingredients, especially chemicals that can strip the natural oils of the skin. Alcohol, alpha hydroxy acids, and retinoids are some of the ingredients that you should avoid.
  • Do not use hot water when washing your face. Lukewarm water is best.
  • While exfoliation is an important part of your skincare routine, it is important that you do not overdo it. Otherwise, this can remove moisture from the skin surface and cause it to dry out.
  • Use a moisturizer that is specially formulated for your skin type. A cream or oil-based moisturizer will provide all-day hydration to your dry skin.
  • Try the oil cleansing method. Basically, it is all about using the right kind of oil to get rid of dirt and makeup. Make sure to rinse the oil after.

Wrap Up

In sum, even if you have dry skin, there is no reason to skip the use of a setting powder. However, this does not mean that any powder will suffice. Look for those that contain ingredients that naturally hydrate the skin!