Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder
As a novice to the world of setting powders, I’ll be the first one to freely admit that I’m rather complacent in my general product choices for this particular makeup category. It’s not so much that I settle for the first adequate candidate that comes along that keeps my concealer in place, and keeps it from settling into fine lines whilst casting the under-eye in a beautiful brightening veil – it’s more that if it works, I stop hunting for potentially an even better suitor. But if I was actually wowed by the powder or inclined to repurchase it once I’d hit pan, that’s an entirely different question. Content would be the correct term to apply here. Which is why my library of setting powders is very limited and uninspiring, to say the least. In the years since I actively made setting powder a part of my daily routine, there’s been only one specific kind that has kept me hooked – the Nars Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder ($37 / 0.24 oz). A colorless pressed setting powder that contains a “Light Reflecting Complex which optimizes light-reflection on the skin.” Contrary to popular belief, this setting powder doesn’t add visible glitter or shimmer to the face despite that it swatches with a good hint of the latter – it does however brighten where you apply it with what almost sets into a glow. It helps to blur imperfections and to a certain degree any fine lines, but does not hide them completely and unfortunately settles after a few hours but nothing that I could not handle. All-in-all, this has been my go-to pick for quite some time.
In the recent months though, I’ve been noticing a change in my under-eye area and it is perhaps the most disturbingly hideous encounter I’ve had so far with said location besides my unfortunately inherited dark circles – dryness. U-t-t-e-r dryness. For whatever reason beyond god and all that’s holy, this all-too common skin issue has been bestowed upon me. Despite very decent hydration (my pee hasn’t been yellow in years. Oh you wanted to know this, don’t even deny it), plus proper eye care by way of a nourishing cream and the occasional at-home mask treatment, it’s just there now. So naturally, I felt compelled to go on a mission to find a setting powder that not only brightens and keeps creasing at bay, I had to find something that is hydrating at the same time. Before Nordstrom had their annual Anniversary sale, which is going on right now and ends August 8 btw, they had a their semi-annual sale and many beauty items were reduced quite a bit which is how I ended up with the Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder ($25 / 0.14 oz). The price listed here is the regular price, I got mine for around $20. When I first stumbled upon it my curiosity was definitely peaked, and after filtering through numerous reviews online, I decided to buy it with a hint of skepticism rooted in the back of my mind. What caught my eye about the Secret Brigthening Powder formula were Laura Mercier’s claims that “This transparent white setting powder brightens, lightens, and boosts luminosity. Formulated with light-reflecting micronized pigments, this super-soft weightless powder delivers a soft radiant finish, never settling in fine lines, accentuating shadows, or building up on skin.” Brightens? Boost luminosity? Never settles? I was all over the place here but nowhere near convinced that it would actually perform how it was being praised. But sometimes severe pessimism pays off because one day I applied it with a damp Beautyblender to my concealed under-eye area, went to work and came home 8 hours later, there was no creasing. I repeat: No.Creasing! No unflattering, nasty white lines occupying the center of my pretty mug.
Not only did the product not settle or crease into my skin, nor did it emphasize pores, it actually subdued my dark circles to almost non-existent. For once, my dark circles were not claiming attention from the outside world. They were timid, tamed, got its ass kicked!! The lightweight formula perfectly set the under-eye area with a subtle luminous finish that actually brightened my dark circles. The texture is almost silky so it not only applies smooth but remains smooth on the skin throughout the day. I felt like the area was a lot softer once I took my makeup off in comparison to using one of my regular setting powders. The powder is a translucent, stark white and is in fact pigmented, so wherever you apply it there will be a slight white cast and it is recommended that you only apply this powder where you personally prefer lightening and brightening. I still applied it on the high-points of the face for highlighting but I would use an actual soft brush for that as opposed to a damp Beautyblender.
Bottom line, I have never instantly loved a product as much as I have the Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder. This stuff is straight-up fire. Lit. Magic. It brightened, it lightened, kept product from creasing or settling, has amazing staying power without compromise, needs no reapplying on my normal/dry skin, it makes the face look luminous and dewy. All-together just an amazing addition to my routine. I’m almost tearing up here it’s that good.