it’s all about the final touches.

by ali hoffman

When making cookies from scratch, the recipe may only require a tiny amount of baking powder. But leave out that one ingredient, and we bet you'll end up tossing the entire batch.

In the beauty world, finishing powder has a similar role—without it, makeup just doesn't seem to look as good.

Or this is at least been my experience, ever since first testing out Make Up For Ever's wildly popular HD Microfinish Powder. Available in only one shade, I use the sheer super-powder everyday as the final step in my makeup regime to mattify foundation and prevent it from getting that weird waxy texture later in the day.  

Though Make Up For Ever will forever be the O.G. finishing powder, it's no longer the only brand in the game. Curious to see how the new players performed, I tested the latest out. Check out my findings below:

The Product: NARS Light Reflecting Setting Powder (Available January 15 here)

The Promise: Smooth foundation and concealer and prolong makeup wear. 

The Result: The perfect compromise between matte and dewy skin! Tone stays even and shine-free, but still leaves you with a little glow.

Use It: Boasting vitamin E (a natural hydrator), the powder is great for the chilly winter months, when skin is more prone to getting dry.

The Product: Sephora Smoothing Translucent Powder

The Promise: Extra fine powder that evens skin tone and provides an invisible, matte effect.

The Result: So fresh and so clean! Like you just washed your face, except you look flawless.

Use It: If your skin tend to gets oily and your sick of trying blotting papers. Plus, the genius packaging only dispenses a small amount of powder at a time (which means you won't open your purse and find loose powder spilled everywhere).