My recent ULTA shopping trip didn’t end with the Neutrogena miracle; I actually got what I went for, which was pressed powder (and I may have picked up another tube of Telescopic mascara – I’m an addict). My coupon didn’t apply to any of the fancier brand name powders, so I went cheap and grabbed Ulta’s own. I felt dubious as I had a rather negative experience with an Ulta-brand concealer once, but the label says “Mineral”, which is all the rage in makeup and a big selling point for me, as mineral makeup tends to produce a smooth, seamless look. The limited color choices added to my concerns: they only offer “Light to Medium” and “Fair to Light”. Diverse!
I finally chose Light to Medium since I don’t like the geisha look, and my skin has warm yellow undertones. (I’m not weird for knowing that, right? You really should know these things about your skin.)
The package was attractive and opened easily, but when I first used it, the powder settled kind of cakey and seemed still too light. (I fear for any girl a shade beyond taupe who buys Ulta powder.) By the way, I don’t use the packaged pressed-powder applicator sponges – rather, I use brushes. I find them considerably better for blending with blush, bronzer and eyeshadow and for even coverage overall.
It took some work, but after a few minutes I was able to buff the powder into a finer-looking texture. My favorite element was when I felt my skin – it felt amazingly soft. The powder smelled nice as well. Still, I had to overbronze and blush a bit to counteract the lightness of it – why don’t they offer darker skin tones? I’m not exactly dark, and it doesn’t seem smart to limit your market to white and Asian buyers, since neither of these colors are plausible for even lighter Hispanic skin colors. Despite the shade problems, the coverage was nice and even-looking and finished matte but not in a plastic-y way.
The verdict: 7/10 – I’d probably give it a 9 if they offered a better selection of colors. Very nice feeling and looking powder, but the work I put into it was a bit much, so I’d save it for finishing the undereye concealer since lighter shades don’t tend to be a problem in that area.
Ulta Mineral Pressed Powder sells at Ulta.com for $14.00.