Can You Use Setting Powder Without Foundation?

Setting powder is usually used with the foundation for a flawless makeup look. But can you get the same effect without foundation? Let’s find out if you can!

Setting powder is that one step of the whole makeup routine that holds up all the cream products underneath. This product has the ability to absorb oil and blur pores. Setting powder comes in two forms pressed powder and in loose form. Both of the forms can be used to stop the cream products from moving and set in place for a long time. Setting powder gives a flawless oil-free face that would not be shiny. Setting powders are mainly made of talc, silica, zinc, and these kinds of products.

This wonder product can be a lifesaver for people with really oily or porous skin. Moreover, if you prefer cruelty-free setting powders you can get them as well. Without having the setting powder on the hand oily skin would not be able to hold the cream products in place. It works wonders on top of a foundation but can you use setting powder without foundation on the bare face? Let’s find out the possibilities and drawbacks of this.

Using Setting Powder Without Foundation

Using setting powder without foundation

The main purpose of using setting powder may be holding the foundation, concealer, and other cream products into place but this can be used on its own too. if you want to opt for a natural-looking makeup finish, you can always apply some setting powder. There is no harm in that. Setting powder will work as it was supposed to work over the foundation. This would help control oil and somewhat covers blemishes too.

Daily use of foundation can make some people break out but using setting powder on a daily basis does not clog your pores or have acne problems. This is because the loose powder is not heavy on the face and it kind of just sits in the skin like skin without any texture.  You can use setting powder in the loose or pressed form on the face without any foundation. You can use setting powder directly on your face for various purposes.

Here are 5 reasons why you may use setting powder without foundation.

1. Oil Control

Using setting powder on a bare face can help control the oil and provides a mattifying finish on the face. Even though you are not using any kind of foundation underneath setting powder will provide you with a fresh-looking face throughout the day.

2. Minimizing Pores

Setting powders have blurring properties and can make the pores’ appearance very even. Even when you are not wearing any foundation the setting powder can make your pores blur and give you very smooth-looking skin.

3. Lightweight

You might want to use setting powder when you are trying to for a very natural-looking makeup look. Setting powder gives a translucent finish to make the skin look very even without having any kind of heavy finish. Using foundation might make the face feel heavy and opting just for setting powder on a daily basis can have a very easygoing makeup look.

4. Quick and Easy

With the use of setting powder achieving a polished and perfect look becomes very easy. It does not take a lot of time to put setting powder on your face, this way you can save time and get ready in a quick manner. Foundation applications need a lot of blending and ski preparation that can be a hassle for many and you can easily put on setting powder without having to worry about all the blending.

5. Quick Touch-up

Using setting powder on the face without any foundation can make the touch-ups really easy. Foundations can be really difficult to touch up and have a fresh face after some time and they might seem to be cacky but applying setting powder on the face can reduce the cakeiness and give you a fresh-looking face anytime you want.

How to Use Setting Powder Without Foundation?

Now that you know it is possible to use setting powder without any foundation on your skin. It’s time to say bye you your favorite ones even if they are the best foundations. Let’s see how you can properly apply setting powder on the face for a very nice finish. Setting powders come in the loose powder form and in the pressed form you can choose to use any of that.

Step 1: Clean and Moisturized Your Face

Start putting setting powder with a very clean and properly moisturized face. Cleaning your face will get rid of any dirt or impurity sitting on top of your face.  Then you can use your preferred moisturizer to control any oil to surface and create a really even base for the powder. You can also use sunscreen before applying powder. This would be even better for daily use.

Clean and moisturized your face

Step 2: Use A Primer

Use a primer that would fill the pores of your face. Since you will be using only the setting powder using a primer would make a base to start. If there are very big pores some setting powders can seep into them and have the pores locked. Using a mattifying primer for oily skin girlies can be a game changer. Since primers are not heavy and would never make the skin cakey you can use a primer before setting powder without any hesitation.

Use a primer

Step 3: Apply with A Brush or Sponge

Setting powders are better when applied with a brush or sponge that usually comes along with the setting powder. Applying with a beauty blender would not give you the desired results because most of the product would just seep into the blender. Applying with a brush would give you a really even finish. Choose the right brush and apply a little amount at a time and slowly build it as per your preference.

Apply with a brush or sponge

Step 4: Finish with A Setting Spray

Finishing your setting powder application with a good setting spray might be optional but if you go on to do this your powder will be set in place looking fresh for a long time. In this regard, alternative of setting spray is not recommended. Use a good setting spray to set the powder in and you will see the difference.

Finish with a setting spray

Using a Setting Powder for Different Purposes

Using a setting powder for different purposes

Setting powders can be a really versatile product and you can use this product in many ways according to your concerns. The main purpose might be holding cream products in place but you can have many other uses of setting powder for sure. When you know how many ways and concerns can be resolved by setting powders you will be really surprised.

In achieving different looks

 you can vary looks from matt to a very dewy finish with setting powders. For a matt-looking makeup finish use your setting powder on top of your foundation while it is damp and use a good amount of powder on the areas you have concealed. For a glowy finish use less foundation and the pressed powder should be focused on the T-zone areas only for a very dewy-looking finish using a very little amount of pressed powder with a small brush in pointed areas are key.

Thickening your cream product

Setting powders can be used to thicken your cream products. This works well when you have a very light coverage watery foundation you can add some loose setting powder onto that and achieve very high coverage of foundation in an instant.

Acting as sun powder

Many setting powders containing sun-protecting agents can give you extra coverage from the sun and you can literally reapply the power any time you want without having to reapply sunscreen on top of your makeup you can just go onto buy a powder that has sun screening agent and can protect your skin.

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Best Setting Powders to Use Without Foundation

Now that you know setting powders can be used without foundation and this actually can have different purposes of use. So let’s see some of the best setting powders that would work very well with or without foundation.

Best setting powders to use without foundation

Chanel Poudre Universelle Libre

This powder is a holy grail for oily skin. Chanel powder can be the best option if you just want to take care of the oily areas without having to feel like there is anything heavy on your skin. This powder can last all day long on your skin and keep looking your skin fresh. This powder is made to look your skin texture softer and pores really smaller.

E.L.F. Halo Glow Setting Powder

This is a drugstore product that can be worth your money. this setting powder works splendidly in setting cream products at the same time when used on the bare face it feels really glowy and controls oil. This will last longer when applied on the face without any foundation and also reduces the pores’ appearance without making the face cacky.

Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish

This is a pressed powder that makes the skin flawless and hugs it when applied perfectly. It is not chalky or makes the skin feels heavy. This setting powder sits on the skin very lightly without making the skin feel discomfort. When applied without any foundation gives very little coverage and controls oils.

Maybelline New York Fit Me Loose Finishing Powder

This is another drugstore loose-setting powder that has been on the market for a while now. This melts down on the skin when applied on skin without any foundation. This a really good base product that helps control oil, gives a smooth finish and stays on the face for a long time.

There are other lots of good setting powders available in the market but we think these products serve the best for their price range and they are very good when you want to go for a soft not too heavy look without any foundation. Special mentions would be Kosas Cloud Set Setting Powder, Pat McGrath Labs Sublime Perfection Setting Powder, Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder, Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Setting Powder, and Nars Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder. You can choose to have any of these setting powders and have them in use without any setting powder.


1. Is it OK to not set the foundation with powder?

You can do that but the foundation would be oily and not stay for long this way. That is where a setting powder helps to make the makeup stay for longer.

2. Can you wear only powder as a foundation?

Yes, you can if your powder has enough coverage to your preference.

3. Can I use face powder every day?

Regular use of powder can reduce oil production, but if you have oily skin it’s best to avoid using it regularly to prevent breakouts.

4. What can I use instead of setting powder?

Cornstarch or baby powder can be used instead of setting powder but I would advise using makeup products since they are made for your makeup to hold properly.

Final Thoughts

So, to the query about, can i use setting powder without makeup or foundation, setting powders are used to set cream products or to control the oil of your skin. You can use setting powder without having to use any kind of foundation. Even without using any foundation setting powders can set your face and make you look fresh throughout the day. Setting powders to help control oil, minimize the appearance of pores, and overall give flawless skin. You need to apply setting powder on the face properly and you will get all the benefits of setting powder and would not have to worry about wearing foundation. Just with 4 simple steps, you can get the perfect-looking face just with setting powder. There is an abundance of setting powders available in the market and you can be very confused to find the right one that would suit your skin and work well without any foundation. Just check the recommendation out and you will find the right one.

Key Points

  • Setting powders can hold the whole makeup look together and make it last for a long time.
  • For a soft glowy everyday look setting powders are best without making your face feel heavy cacky or blocking the pores.
  • There are many reasons you can use a setting powder. This can be used to give you different makeup finishes and also build up coverage of cream products.
  • Best setting powders for daily use are not easy to find, you can use some of the bests like E.L.F., Chanel, Laura Mercier, Fenty.

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