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Powder Foundations: A Compact Solution For Tired Mornings

Set aside your liquid and cream formulas and reach for the compact to cover any signs of sleep deprivation.

Some nights you just can’t get any. Sleep, that is. From burning the midnight oil at the office and bingeing the new series on Netflix to last-minute crash revision for that very important exam and drinking with your buddies, we’ve all been there – trust us when we say that we understand the difference that extra five minutes of snoozing makes on nights without enough shut-eye. And come sunrise, we make our bed, brush our teeth, take a shower and reach for our arsenal of makeup to hide any sign of sleep deprivation.

No need to doll yourself up with 10 steps of makeup though. Reach for a powder foundation instead, as you can just apply it on right after your skincare and head out – no setting with powder required. Unlike liquid and cream foundations which are absorbed into the skin, powder foundations sit on the surface and are great at absorbing moisture and fending off shine, making it a godsend for those with oily, acne-prone or combination skin.

Thanks to the latest innovations, traditional formulas that are usually heavy and cakey have been replaced with powders that feel weightless and offer good coverage without clogging your pores or drying out your complexion. On top of that, powder foundations also do not leave a greasy residue on your skin as they are made without oils and emollients. Below, nine of our favourite powder foundations guaranteed to turn your skin from drab to fab. Oh, did we mention that they’re perfect for everyday wear? You’re welcome.

Clinique Superpowder Double Face Makeup, $56 from Tangs
Swipe on this formula to recreate the lit-from-within look in an instant. It glides smoothly onto the skin and evens out your skin tone without looking fake or powdery. Tip: For the best results, prep your skin with a good moisturiser and primer first. Apply the powder foundation with a fluffy brush or a damp makeup sponge if you prefer total coverage. It Cosmetics Celebration Illumination Foundation, $60 from Sephora
Not only is this highly pigmented powder foundation designed to provide shine-free coverage without settling into lines and wrinkles, it also contains SPF 20 for added protection and is packed with anti-ageing and skin-plumping ingredients such as peptides, antioxidants and hydrolyzed collagen. Bonus: It’s also infused with hyaluronic acid, rose, aloe and niacin to give you the enviable airbrushed effect while keeping your skin fresh and hydrated. Kat Von D Beauty Lock-It Powder Foundation, $55 from Sephora
Just like all the products in the Lock-It series, this sweat-proof foundation does not smudge or budge one bit. This vegan formula comes in 26 shades to deliver the full coverage of your dreams and contains rice powder extract and kaolin to soften the appearance of imperfections and give a diffused matte finish. Giorgio Armani Beauty Luminous Silk Compact, $75 (refill) and $30 (empty case) from Tangs
Just because you didn’t catch the ZZZs last night doesn’t mean you have to settle for skin that looks flat. Inspired by charmeuse silk, this buildable formula uses exclusive Micro-fil technology to blur imperfections and give your skin its much-needed glow. Tip: When it comes to applying powder foundation, less is definitely more. Too much can look heavy and chalky, so start with a little and build it up. Laura Mercier Smooth Finish Foundation Powder SPF20, $80 from Sephora
This top-rated powder not only gives you a my-skin-but-better coverage and reduces the appearance of fine lines and pores, but is also extremely hydrating and lightweight, making it great for any skin type. This handy compact can be applied wet or dry, depending on the level of coverage you prefer. MAC Cosmetics Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation, $59 from Sephora
This cult classic didn’t garner fans for nothing – this plush powder takes the prize for its convenient application and staying power as it delivers an instant porcelain-like complexion with one swipe. This versatile formula also works well as a setting powder if you want your liquid base to stay put, or just wear it alone for a sheer natural look. Make Up For Ever Matte Velvet Skin Compact, $72 from Sephora
This new mattifying powder foundation is high up on our beauty faves list for two reasons. One, the breathable formula helps us conceal blemishes and visible pores like a pro. Two, it’s water-resistant! The line is designed to match 30 skin tones, and each compact comes with a dual-sided sponge – a black side for photo-ready high coverage and a white side for a soft veil of powder. Maybelline Fit Me Matte + Poreless Powder, $15.90 from major pharmacies islandwide
Use this affordable formula with a damp beauty sponge and it’ll keep shine at bay all day so that your skin looks polished to perfection from morning till night. Wearing a primer underneath will help it last longer as well. Tip: Prevent cakey makeup with these four simple steps. Use a hydrating primer as base, then conceal troubled areas with liquid or cream formulas before buffing in the powder foundation. Seal everything in with a setting spray. Wander Beauty Wanderlust Powder Foundation, $62 from Sephora
This blends effortlessly for a flawless, natural-looking finish and evens out your skin without being traceable to the naked eye. We also like that it’s formulated with aloe leaf extract to moisturise skin and restore suppleness.