The Dupe List: Pressed & Perfecting Powder Foundation(s)

Hello, Beauties!

Have you ever been on vacation and realized, to your horror, that you’ve forgotten to pack one of your staple beauty products?  Or have you been in a tight financial spot, where you haven’t been able to afford your beloved, high end, beauty brand’s must have, that you absolutely can’t live without? OR (the worst) you’ve either misplaced or somebody STOLE your makeup bag or you’ve broken one of your favorite beauty products, beyond repair? And after blowing through your hard earned beauty budget, you just can’t break the bank to RE-PURCHASE the products that someone stole, or replace the lost/broken product? Or there’s no Sephora, Ulta, Nordstrom, M.A.C Store, etc. around to replace your beloved beauty staple because you’re on vacay?

The truth is, it happens to the best of us…. BELIEVE ME.

BUT THERE IS GREAT NEWS! Those high end beauty products we all know and love? There ARE more affordable options out there, incase you aren’t in the financial position to purchase (or re-purchase) those expensive brands we all love and need.

So today’s subject is all about drugstore beauty products, or more affordable makeup, that mirror or duplicate (dupe) those high end beauty products we depend on for perfecting our beauty routine and rituals: Powder Foundation Edition.

target mu

Physician’s Formula: “Mineral Wear Airbrushing Pressed Powder”

Dupe: It Cosmetics “Celebration Foundation”

$12.79 OR Target, CVS, Walmart, Walgreens, & Ulta


Physician’s Formula “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” $12.49


Physician’s Formula Mineral Wear “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” is a GREAT drugstore/more affordable pressed powder, that delivers a smooth application, buildable coverage, and a flawless finish. It has SPF 30 Broad Spectrum Sunscreen for appropriate sun protection, and DOES have a “smoothing” and “firming” effect when applied. The claims of a “lifting” effect are a little over the top, but it does give you a flawless face; especially after applying foundation or concealer. It comes in a “transparent” shade, so it can be used for baking foundation (colorless or transparent shades are best for baking foundation or concealer). The “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” comes in 2 other shades; Beige, and Creamy Natural, which accommodates light to medium skin tones. These colors can be used, post-baking foundation; after the transparent or colorless “setting” powder (or “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” in Transparent) is applied and bakes for 5 to 7 minutes (but I’ll cover a full “baking” tutorial in my next blog post). For medium-deep to deeper skin tones, you will find that the “Airbrushing Pressed Bronzer” (from the same Physician’s Formula line), will accommodate your skin tone MUCH better. And the good news is, the “Airbrushing Pressed Bronzer” is the same price and provides the same features, and benefits (as well as the same formula) as the “Airbrushing Pressed Powder”.

Physician’s Formula “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” $12.49


“Airbrushing Pressed Powder” is a mineral based powder, but it is talc-free, which is good news, considering the link between talc and cancer. It’s packaged as a pressed foundation in a foundation pan, a plastic compact, with a bottom storage compartment, which features a mirror and a small, thin, kabuki brush; BUT I don’t suggest using the kabuki brush. It’s not a good brush, and it’s thinly shaped with a fan like appearance. I suggest using your favorite setting powder, buffing powder, or foundation powder makeup brush to apply this slightly creamy and smooth, but textured, buildable coverage foundation. It even promises 16 hour coverage, BUT I’ve found that touch ups are necessary throughout the day; that doesn’t mean that it’s not a great long-wearing powder that gives you a flawless, airbrushed finish…. it just means that you should be prepared for a few touch ups during the work day/night out. And it’s still extremely long wearing as far as other foundation powders go- especially drug store beauty brands!

It Cosmetics “Celebration Foundation” $35

How is this a “dupe” for It Cosmetics “Celebration Foundation?? It’s a buildable, medium to full coverage formula, that when applied with your favorite powder brush, setting powder brush, foundation buffing brush, or Kabuki brush, goes on extremely smooth, finishing your liquid foundation with a perfect, flawless finish. OR it can be used alone for a lighter, but still skin smoothing, color correcting, skin tone even(ing) coverage. Both foundations temporarily “smooth, lift, and firm” (or a least claim to do this) which is true as far as smoothing and creating a firmer and more even skin tone, go. These two claims are definitely achievable with each formula. You can also use both products to finish “baking” your foundation or concealer, AFTER SETTING POWDER IS APPLIED, THAT IS. The only difference is that It Cosmetics offers a wider variety of shades, which, like I mentioned before, is A LOT more convenient for beauties with medium-deep, to deeper skin tones. But, again, these skin tones will find that the “Airbrushing Pressed Bronzer” (from the same Physician’s Formula line), will accommodate your skin tones MUCH better. Like, It Cosmetics, Physician’s Formula “Airbrushing Pressed Powder”, also has a broad spectrum SPF 30 sunscreen in the formula, BUT It Cosmetics “Celebration Foundation” has a 50+ broad spectrum SPF, which is obviously better sun protection. BUT both are great options, especially the Physician’s Formula, when it comes to NOT breaking the bank.


NYX: #NoFilter Finishing Powder

$11.99 OR Target, CVS, & Ulta

Dupe: Lorac Porefection Baked Perfecting Powder $36, Laura Geller Double Take Foundation $36, (both at, and M.A.C Mineralize Skinfinish $34 (

NYX “#NoFilter Finishing Powder” $11.99

NYX “No Filter Finishing Powder”, is one of the best affordable finishing/foundation powders on the market. Not only does it smooth out your skin tone and finish foundation, but it provides a flawless coverage, that promises selfies with “no filter” needed. Though these claims are a little over the top, they certainly aren’t too far from the truth…. This baked powder is my personal favorite drugstore option for a baked foundation powder. BAKED POWDERS ARE EVERYTHING, BTW…..And why are “baked” powders so unique and so dang good? Here are the facts;

  • Baked Powders are “baked” (literally) on a Terra-Cotta tile; Minerals and natural oils are mixed and then applied to the tiles to set and dry, AKA “bake”.
  • Baked Powders provide a FLAWLESS, medium, buildable to full coverage, perfected face of foundation, AND most are chemical free.
  • Baked Powders soften the look of your skin, by providing a powder that is perfected during the baking process, because during the baking process, the formula improves.
  • The formula is improved during the baking process, because the formula; AKA microscopic granules of “powder” which come from minerals, and natural oils (think sunflower or jojoba oils) cling together to provide a more full coverage, but EXTRA soft, non-irritating formula, that provides a perfected look during application.
  • Since baking helps the microscopic minerals and pieces of powder “cling” together, it also makes for longer wear, and fewer touch ups, because the formula has already been “baked” (which “baking” foundation is the latest foundation application trend)…. BUT GET THIS; Pre-baked foundation powders are already baked, so you can get that “baked” look, from just applying a pre-baked powder, without the extra hassle! Of course once it’s applied, your body heat will “bake” it on to your skin, but having a pre-baked formula makes the baking process and finished application, absolutely flawless, and the wear time is a lot longer.
NYX “#NoFilter Finishing Powder”. $11.99

Although “baking” foundation is a GREAT and easy way to provide longer wear time and a more full coverage application, pre baked foundation powders are an easy way to achieve that look, without having to do anything extra; You simply apply this foundation powder over your liquid foundation and let it set. The powder will “bake” into your liquid foundation with your body heat, and then after you are finished with your highlighting, contouring, blush, strobing, (whatever you do to finish your face) then just spray a good setting spray; (Kat Von D’s “Lock It Makeup Setting Mist” $26 is a great option for a “locked in,” long wearing, face of makeup. AND since the minerals and oils in terra cotta baked foundation powders are natural and pre baked, you don’t have to worry about the powder caking or looking uneven (AKA “grey” colored looking splotchy-ness). The minerals go on smooth, mesh extremely well with any liquid foundation, and give you a perfect foundation application EVERY TIME.

mineralize 2
M.A.C Mineralize Skinfinish Natural in “Medium Dark”.

Since NYX’s “#NoFilter Finishing Powder” is made the exact same way every baked foundation is made, there’s really not a huge difference between this baked powder, and higher end baked powders like, Lorac’s “Porefection Baked Perfecting Powder”, M.A.C’s “Mineralized Skinfinish”, or Laura Geller’s “Double Take Foundation”. Though Lorac has ingredients like salicylic acid (for acne) and moisturizers for anti-aging, that’s the only real difference between the formulas. All can be layered for more coverage, and all have a flawless finish, as well as a mineral base, and a natural manufacturing process. Although M.A.C Cosmetics and Laura Geller have the largest variety of shades, Lorac is definitely my favorite. With salicylic acid in the formula, I see less breakouts. BUT if I’m out of my M.A.C, Laura Geller, or Lorac, and I need a quick fix, NYX always does the trick! It gives me that flawless finish that I receive from other “baked” formulas, and it also doesn’t break my budget (as if I have control when it comes to my makeup “budget”). All in all, my husband is very happy when I opt for this powder, and my skin STILL looks fabulous too!

lorac powder



Ulta: “Double Duty Wet/Dry Pressed Powder Foundation”

$14 OR at Ulta Stores

Dupe: Tarte “Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation” $32 ( OR Kat Von D “Lock It Foundation Powder” $36 (


Ulta’s Double Duty Wet/Dry Pressed Powder Foundation $14.99

Although Ulta’s “Double Duty Wet/Dry Powder Foundation” can only be found at Ulta, and it’s still $14, I believe it’s a thriftier choice than a $36 + powder foundation. AND during Ulta’s sale months (think Ulta’s 21 Days of Beauty) you can purchase this powder foundation for a mere $6 (so stock up when you can!).

The first time I tried Ulta’s “Double Duty Powder Foundation”, I had picked it up during one of my manic beauty spending spree’s, for $6. I admit I wasn’t expecting too much from this product, but $6 is a cheap hand to play when it comes to makeup and beauty, so I decided to go all in and at least try this budget friendly powder foundation. I had just purchased one of Too Faced’s “Cocoa Powder Foundation”, two of Lorac’s “Porefection Perfecting Powder”, and then on a separate shopping trip, I had purchased Jane Iredale’s “Amazing Base Loose Minerals”, and “Amazing Base Pressed Minerals”, as well as M.A.C’s “Mineralize Skinfinish” in Medium Deep and Medium. So I wasn’t thinking I’d be trying this bargain beauty product anytime soon… BUT I actually did some baking and color mixing experiments (I do this when I’m bored) and I started to sweep Ulta’s “Double Duty Wet/Dry Powder Foundation” on my cheeks, with my Kat Von D “Setting Powder” Brush. The results were anything but “ordinary”….

Ulta’s “Double Duty Wet/Dry Powder Foundation” was extremely smooth and felt “creamy” as far as the formula picking up on the powder brush. The medium coverage formula can be built up to a full coverage, and it doesn’t cake or look uneven. It has a matte finish, but doesn’t look too matte, which can lead to looking dry or caked if you have dry skin.  It can be set with any makeup setting spray, and you can easily touch up any shine throughout the day. It does work well as far as long lasting coverage goes, and you won’t need many touch ups. It works best with a setting powder brush, or a buffing foundation brush, and can be used with a “Beauty Blender” for a more full coverage face of foundation. AND since this is a “Wet/Dry Foundation Powder”, it can be used with a damp ”Beauty Blender”, which can be dipped in water, OR makeup setting spray, to bake the foundation on your under-eye area (or places that need a little extra coverage or concealing).

tarte dd
Tarte “Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation” $32

How does this beauty bargain compare to Tarte’s “Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation” or Kat Von D’s “Lock It Foundation Powder”?? Well, first off, it can be layered on for buildable coverage. All three formula’s don’t dry out the skin, and they also have a creamy (but obviously still powdered), texture when picked up on a makeup brush (although oily to combination skin types will probably prefer Kat Von D’s or Ulta’s formula). All of them provide excellent full coverage if that’s the look you want to achieve, and all three can be used over liquid foundation, WITHOUT looking cake-y or giving your foundation a “grey color” casting on the face, due to too much coverage.


Make sure if you use Kat Von D’s “Lock It Powder Foundation”, that you match the color of her liquid foundation, EXACTLY the same to the powder foundation. Her color options are so wide (this is a good thing) that if you are even ONE shade off on powder foundation from the liquid foundation, or one shade is Warm, and one shade is Cool, then you will end up with that HORRID grey looking color cast, or you will look cake-y, splotch-y or the coverage will look too full!

You can use all of these formula’s as a powder only, with ability to conceal imperfections, with a “Beauty Blender”, or you can dust it on your liquid foundation to “bake” your makeup under your eyes. All three powder foundation’s come in a pan, with compact packaging, including a mirror. Both Ulta’s product, and Kat Von D’s product, come with a round sponge applicator, housed in the bottom compartment, under the powder pan. Tarte’s powder comes with a round application sponge, but it isn’t stored in the bottom compartment; instead it comes in the “Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation” box, that houses the compact, with a drawstring bag for easy storage, and then the round sponge applicator is included in the drawstring bag.

kat powder

All three of these formula’s are great choices for powder foundation. They all go on smooth, don’t cake, and give you all day coverage, that locks in place with a good setting spray. And remember…. STOCK UP ON ULTA’S “WET/DRY PRESSED POWDER FOUNDATION” DURING “ULTA’S 21 DAYS OF BEAUTY”.  Keep your Ulta Catalogue’s handy, and you can see what days you can buy this product for just $6. If you aren’t part of Ulta’s Reward’s Program, or you aren’t signed up for their monthly catalogues, visit your nearest Ulta Beauty and get signed up for the program! Not only do you get points for each dollar you spend, but you get DOUBLE POINTS during their “21 Days of Beauty” event! Plus you will have a full calendar of which “must have” products go on sale for 50% or more, on designated days! You can also sign up on You will be glad you did!


NYX Cosmetics: “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Pressed Powder Foundation

$9.49 OR Target Stores, Ulta, or CVS

Dupe: M.A.C Studio Fix Powder + Foundation


NYX “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Powder Foundation $11.99

NYX has an array of makeup and beauty products that are AWESOME, not only for the price, but just in general. They have everything from lipsticks, liquid lipsticks, lip liners, to blushes, bronzers, setting powders, makeup setting sprays, concealers, foundations, and powder foundations. And most of the products that I have tried from NYX, have been very good, and some, even GREAT! Some of my favorite beauty steals from NYX, are their foundation powders. My favorite being the “#NoFilter Finishing Powder”, which I talked about earlier in this post, and my other favorite, is the “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Powder Foundation. Here’s what is so great about this powder foundation, which is extremely comparable and a worthy dupe, of the classic beauty favorite, M.A.C “Studio Fix Powder + Foundation”.



NYX “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Powder Foundation, is a medium, but buildable coverage powder foundation. It can be worn alone, or over a light to medium coverage/matte finish liquid foundation. Depending on what kind of coverage your foundation offers, “Stay Matte But Not Flat”, is a great skin finishing powder that locks your makeup in place, or can be used alone to conceal minor imperfections. I don’t however, suggest using this over full coverage liquid foundation, or extremely moisturizing foundation, because it can cast a grey, ashy look to your foundation finish, because of the full coverage both powder foundation and full coverage liquid foundation, offer. That doesn’t mean that this isn’t a great option to finish BB Cream, light to medium coverage foundations, or dewy finish foundations; it simply means you need to be careful with how much product you use to  “build up” coverage over a liquid foundation (or completely avoid using this over moisturizing foundation). Matte powder foundations are usually used by people with oily to combination skin for oil control, so if you have dry to extremely dry skin, I suggest using a more moisturizing, creamy feeling powder, like Tarte’s “Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation”- DUPE: Ulta’s “Double Duty Wet/Dry Pressed Powder Foundation” or It Cosmetics “Celebration Foundation”- DUPE: Physician’s Formula “Airbrushing Pressed Powder” Foundation.


The matte finished powder can be layered on extremely well with a buffing foundation brush, or basic powder brush, as well as a “Beauty Blender” which gives you a more full coverage finish. If you’re using this over a liquid foundation, I suggest using a setting powder brush or Kabuki brush to avoid caking and providing a smooth and even finish. If you’re using this as your only foundation source, then you can use a buffing foundation brush or “Beauty Blender”, for full(er) coverage. The “Stay Matte But Not Flat” name says it all- a lot of matte finish powders can look extremely… BLEH, after application, due to the matte finish. BUT “Stay Matte But Not Flat” powder foundation looks surprisingly fresh, and doesn’t leave you with a drab or chalky finish. It certainly doesn’t leave you with a glow, but it doesn’t look too matte, which is a great benefit that this powder provides!

M.A.C “Studio Fix Powder + Foundation” $34

How is “Stay Matte But Not Flat” a dupe for M.A.C “Studio Fix Powder + Foundation”?? Both products give you buildable, medium coverage that can be built up without looking caked or “flat”. You can use both alone, or over liquid foundation (as long as the foundation isn’t too oily or moisturizing), and both products leave your makeup with a fresh and polished finish. Although M.A.C offer’s more shade precise color options, NYX offer’s over 20 different shades for beauties with light to dark skin; and that’s a HUGE plus for a drugstore beauty brand- Most drugstore beauty brand’s don’t offer an array of shades that large. ESPECIALLY in powder foundation formulas. Setting powder brushes, Kabuki brushes, foundation buffing brushes, large, medium, or small powder brushes, as well as “Beauty Blender’s” can be used to apply both NYX and M.A.C powders, and all brands of different makeup setting sprays can set and finish both of these products. And although M.A.C is a classic staple for most beauty buff’s, I predict that NYX’s “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Foundation Powder will be around for years to come, making this NYX product, a soon-to-be classic.



NYX’s “#NoFilter Finishing Powder”, Physician’s Formula “Airbrushing Pressed Mineral Powder”, Ulta’s “Double Duty Wet/Dry Pressed Powder Foundation”, and NYX’s “Stay Matte But Not Flat” Pressed Foundation Powder, are some of the best beauty steals on the market. And they are not just great, price-wise; they are extremely worthy competitors against some of the makeup industry’s best powder foundations on the market today. So whether you’re on vacation and/or there’s no Sephora or Ulta around, or you’ve already blown through your monthly beauty budget, or shattered your favorite foundation powder beyond repair, and even if you’re just trying to save money or cut back on spending; there’s absolutely no reason that you should have to feel “less beautiful” or “less confident”, because you can’t obtain or afford your regular high end beauty brands… And believe me, I know how hard it is to feel confident and happy about your makeup application if you’re missing a staple product; and seriously- there’s nothing worse than losing confidence because of those kinds of situations! But now, my beauties, you know that you don’t have to downgrade the quality of your powder foundation, when you’re pulling the reigns in on your beauty budget- You just need to purchase one of these worthy “dupes” to find a low priced/high quality powder!


Like a lot of foundation and setting powders, you can use powder foundation to FINISH the baking process of your concealer or foundation, after you’ve locked your liquid foundation in place with SETTING POWDER. Some (actually a lot) of powder foundations aren’t good for baking, because like I mentioned before, they can provide too much coverage and end up casting a grey color to your overall finish; and this “grey” cast isn’t something you can reverse. After applying setting powder and “baking” it, you can add extra coverage to your foundation after the setting or “baking” process. It’s honestly easier to find a good liquid foundation that mixes and blends well with your powder foundation to set your makeup if you’re looking for extra coverage; with that being said, learn about the do’s and don’ts of setting liquid foundation with powder foundations, versus setting liquid foundation with setting powders; So immediately following this post, will be another post about the importance of knowing which liquids and powders work well together, and how to avoid a caked, grey looking, cast to your foundation finish….


Have A Fab & Fresh Day, Beauties!




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