As celebs like Angelina Jolie, Drew Barrymore and Kate Hudson know, translucent powder is the dubious frenemy of our makeup bags. When used for high-flash situations (like when strolling the red carpet for a blockbuster premiere), the ghostly stuff turns stark-white in print—making it look like you had your makeup done by Keebler elves.
But when employed for other primping purposes, the lifesaver can help keep makeup in place, spare your skin and hair from imperfections and boost dramatic looks.
With the help of a few E! Style Collective members, we find out how to harness the transformative power of translucent powder for good, not evil.
Mattify lip color: Going with a bold lip color? Help keep perfect lines and saturated hues matte and in place with a touch of powder. "Place a tissue over your lips, then dust translucent powder onto the tissue with a fluffy powder brush," suggested makeup artist Karen Gonzalez. Finish with a top coat of lipstick.
Boost mascara: If going for an ultra-thick and full lash look, use an eye shadow brush to apply powder to the lashes. Follow with a few coats of mascara for maximum effect. For more control, try the technique with a pressed powder, like Chantecaille HD Perfecting Powder.
Erase chafing: Whether shoes or clothes are chaffing skin, find relief by using your face powder as makeshift baby powder.
Prime lids: To add wear to your eye shadows and liner (and reduce any shine from your eyelids), use a smaller-sized, densely packed brush to lightly dust your eyes with powder in between coats of makeup.
Use as a catchall: When creating major eye looks, flecks of shadow inevitably land on cheeks. Make cleanup easy without ruining the makeup on your face by applying translucent powder under eyes and along cheekbones. When your eye look is complete, simply use a loose powder brush to wipe away any fallout. It Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Silk HD Anti-Aging Micro Powder not only helps rid cheeks of fallout, but is formulated to minimize the appearance of pores as well.
De-crease concealer: "Creamy concealers can sometimes crease, causing skin to look cracked and wrinkled," said Rebecca Ashley, a celebrity makeup artist and E! Style Collective member. "Apply translucent powder on top of the concealer to fill in the gaps. This will ensure that it looks clean, but it won't have a thick powdery finish that is noticeable." Try Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder for a smooth, untraceable finish.
Emergency root touch up: If your hair turns greasy midday and you don't have styling products in tow, use a sparing amount of translucent powder from your makeup bag to de-grease roots. A powder with a built-in brush, like Ilia Fade Into You, makes application easy. After applying, turn your hair upside down and shake it out to remove any excess powder to avoid a chalky look.