The BEST (And Cheapest) Drugstore Setting Powder You’ve Never Heard Of


RCMA setting powder

Any beauty lover knows that finding a good setting powder is essential to the perfect cake face – it’s literally the icing on top of the cake! The best setting powders not only keep your makeup on lockdown all day, but they work to control oil, have no flashback, and blur imperfections. Years ago we discovered the RCMA No Color Powder, $12, not only is it ahhhmazing, but it’s without a doubt the best value-for-money powder on the market. And, while many in the beauty industry love it, it’s still not well known to many! It’s $12 for three ounces of setting powder, whereas most setting powders cost between $30 to $40 for one ounce! Here’s everything you need to know about this cult setting powder.

What it is: A no-color setting powder that gives a soft-focus finish. The formula was created by RCMA (The Research Council of Makeup Artists) over 50 years ago, for use by professional makeup artists in Hollywood. The RCMA powder is designed to look natural and perform like a luxury powder so that on-screen actors would always look amazing.

What it does: Sets makeup flawlessly for extra-long wear. It has no pigment so it won’t alter the color of your foundation. Because it has no color, it works for all skin tones; from very fair to very deep.

What we liked: The powder is super fine, mattifying, and long-lasting, and it will keep your makeup in place all day! We love that when you apply this, it instantly gives a smooth finish, it’s almost like it airbrushes your skin. You can use it with a brush or a damp makeup sponge, it’s perfect for baking, and it gives NO flashback – if you don’t know what that is, you NEED to read this!

What we didn’t like: The packaging isn’t very convenient as the lid has huge holes, which means when you pour powder, it spills out a lot and the packaging makes it almost impossible to put the excess powder back in! It also doesn’t have a lid that you can pour the loose powder in, which can be pretty frustrating if you’re on the go. The packaging itself is very basic; it literally looks like a spice container, but you can always put the powder in another container (or an old setting powder pot) to make using it more convenient. Ultimately we would rather use a product that looks amazing on our skin than great in its packaging!

Comparisons: The RCMA powder is a bit like a cross between Ben Nye’s Banana Powder and the Laura Mercier Translucent Setting Powder. Ben Nye’s obviously has color and feels more powdery, but the way it keeps makeup matte all day is very similar. Like the Laura Mercier powder, this adds no texture to the skin, and smooths out your complexion.

Will you guys be trying this? If you love amazing drugstore beauty, check out our top 10 drugstore products under $10 here.