This Setting Powder Is So Good, It Doesn't Make Sense

It minimizes excess shine while maintaining my skin's natural glow.

This Setting Powder Is So Good, It Doesn't Make Sense
Photo: Kosas/ InStyle

Let me preface by saying that I've never been a powder girl. My whole life, I've always gravitated toward liquid foundations, gel blushes, liquid highlighters, and setting sprays. I'm a dewy girl at heart, so even though I know how well setting powders can work, I've never liked the way one looks on my skin — until now.

The Kosas Cloud Set Setting Powder has made me completely rethink my strong feelings about powders — in fact, I use it almost every day.

Cloud Set isn't your average powder. It's a pressed powder that comes in a compact, which isn't exactly revolutionary, but the formula is. Unlike other setting powders, this one is extremely sheer thanks to its innovative baked formula. For me, this is which is really where the magic really happens: The formula starts off as a mousse and is baked until it becomes this lightweight powder.

Most powders I've tried eliminate the dewiness I've worked so hard for, but this one simply gets rid of excess shine without minimizing my glow. Call it magic, but it doesn't even feel like I'm wearing makeup when I swipe it on.

The way it looks on my skin is enough to sell me on this powder. My T-zone looks airbrushed without falling flat, which is something I've never experienced in a powder before. However, I'd be remiss not to mention all the skincare ingredients that are packed in this formula.

The formula uses bamboo stem extract to absorb excess sebum, passionfruit leaf extract to smooth my skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines, and Chinese peony, which ever-so-slightly mattifies the skin and minimizes the appearance of pores.

kosas cloud set review
Courtesy of Kosas

To shop: $34; kosas.com

I've used this powder so many times, but I'm still amazed by how well it works. It makes my skin look like have an IRL filter on my face without being too exaggerated. My skin still looks like skin — just the most put-together version of it. The pores around my nose almost cease to exist, my always-shiny forehead looks like it has an elegant glow instead of a sporty sweat, and I love how it helps set my under-eye concealer, which is also from Kosas.

I'm not the only one to sing its praises, either. TikTok did its thing and spread the word that this powder is supreme. The collective agreement is that it does everything I mentioned above. Plus, it never cakes, settles, or creases.

Most setting powders on the market come in a very select number of shades (like, a handful at most), and while some are universal and can adapt to most people's skin, I love that Kosas offers 10. From a very sheer light tone to a rich deep one, this range helps people of all skin tones find a match that won't just adapt but will truly melt into the skin and blend seamlessly.

Oh, and did I mention that it's vegan, cruelty-free, and talc-free? Because it is.

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The hype is real, and I'm glad to have found a powder that still lets me be the forever-dewy girl I strive to be. And you don't need to have oily skin to benefit from this product. I don't consider my skin to be too oily, but I do sweat in the summer and have enlarged pores around my nose that I'm happy to blur out. And Cloud Set fixes it all.

From non-toxic makeup and skincare to sustainability practices, Clean Slate is an exploration of all things in the green beauty space. Find out what's really in your products — and what's being left out.

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