Powder Vs Cream Foundation

With so many different types of foundations on the market, it can be tough to decide which one is right for you. 

Powder and Cream foundations are two of the most popular types. But which one is better? And which one is best for your skin type? This post will talk about the difference between powder and cream foundations and it’ll help you figure out which type is best for you.

This post contains affiliate links. Read the full disclosure.

Powder Vs Cream Foundation

The main two differences between powder and cream foundations are the texture and the type of finish. Powder foundation has a dry, light texture. It’s available in both pressed and loose formulas, and it gives the skin a matte finish. Cream foundation has a thicker, creamy texture, and it leaves the skin with a dewy finish.

Now that you know the main differences let’s discuss the pros and cons of each type in more detail. Keep reading to find out why powder foundation is suitable for oily skin and cream foundation is better for dry or mature skin.

What’s A Powder Foundation?

maybelline superstay powder foundation

Powder foundation is a makeup product used to create a matte, smooth base on the skin. It’s available in both loose and pressed formulas. Mineral loose powder is typically made of mica or silica. It doesn’t contain many ingredients, so it’s suitable for people with sensitive skin.

This mineral foundation, for example, is one of the best loose powder foundations on the market. It has a light formula that blends easily into the skin without looking cakey or heavy. It’s also available in many different shades to suit different skin tones.

Pressed powder is made of a combination of ingredients like talc and silicones. It has a higher pigment load than loose powder, offering more coverage.

You can apply it with a brush or powder puff, and it gives the skin light to medium coverage. It can help control oil, so it’s a good choice for those with oily or combination skin types. It’s also easy to apply, which means it’s an excellent choice for beginners.

This powder foundation is one of the best drugstore powder foundations. It has a silky formula that glides onto the skin, and it provides a natural matte finish without looking dry or cakey.

The difference between powder and liquid foundations is that with powder foundations you might need to apply many layers to get a medium coverage whereas with liquid foundations you can get medium coverage with just one layer.

Read More: Best Affordable Powder Foundations

 Powder Foundation Pros

Here are some of the main advantages of powder foundation:

  • It’s lightweight, and many powders can be worn alone without feeling heavy on the skin.
  • It has a matte finish, so it’s great for people with oily skin.
  • It can help control shine and absorb excess oil.
  • Applying powder foundation is quick and easy, making it a good choice for beginners.
  • You can layer a powder foundation easily without getting that thick, caked-up look.
  • It can last well on the skin.
  • You can use it on top of many cream or powder makeup products.
  • It comes in a wide variety of shades to suit different skin tones.
  • It is easier to cover blemishes since it’s less likely to crease around them.

The cosmetics industry is always developing new products, and there are several powder makeup fondations that may suit dry skin. This powder foundation, for example, has coconut water and hyaluroniz acid which makes it a great choice for dry skin. For more suggestions, check this list of the best powder foundations for mature skin.

pur mineral foundation

Powder Foundation Cons

Now let’s take a look at some of the disadvantages of powder foundation:

  • It can cause the makeup to look dry and cakey if it’s applied heavily.
  • It may not provide as much coverage as other formulas, such as cream foundation.
  • Applying too much can settle into fine lines and wrinkles, making them more noticeable.
  • Some brands don’t offer a huge shade range, so it may be challenging to find the right match for your skin tone.
  • You can’t apply it with your fingers like a cream foundation. It would help if you had a brush or powder puff.

What’s A Cream Foundation?

dermablend cream foundation

Cream foundation is a type of makeup that offers more coverage than powder foundation, and it typically has a slightly heavier texture. It’s designed to give the skin a dewy finish, best suited for dry or mature skin types.

This cream foundation is one of the most popular options on the market. It has an SPF 30, and it provides medium to full coverage. It’s also available in a wide range of shades.

Cream Foundation Pros

Here are some of the main advantages of cream foundation:

  • It can provide more coverage than powder foundation, so you only need to use a small amount.
  • It leaves the skin with a dewy finish, making it suitable for dry skin.
  • The creamy texture helps the product to melt into the skin.
  • Some formulas have added skincare benefits, like moisturizing properties or sunscreen.
  • It gives the skin a flawless full coverage look perfect for photos.
  • You can apply it with your fingers or a brush.
covergirl cream foundation

Cream Foundation Cons

Now let’s take a look at some of the disadvantages of cream foundation:

  • It’s not suitable for oily or combination skin since it can make oily areas look greasy.
  • It’s thicker than powder foundation, and it can be harder to apply.
  • It can make the skin look cakey if it’s not applied correctly.
  • It might settle into the pores.
  • It takes some practice to learn how to apply it.
  • Some cream foundations with poor quality ingredients can make dry skin worse.
  • You can’t apply it on top of powder makeup.

Read More: Best Cream Foundations For Mature Skin

What’s The Difference Between Powder And Cream Foundation?

powder or cream foundation

Now that you know the pros and cons of powder and cream foundation, let’s take a look at the main differences between them:

 The Type Of Formula

Powder foundation is dry and lighter in texture than cream foundation, and it’s typically less pigmented. Cream foundation is thicker in consistency, and it might take some practice to learn how to apply it correctly.

Coverage Levels

Powder foundation typically offers light to medium coverage, while cream foundation can provide medium to full coverage.

The Finish

Powder foundation leaves the skin with a matte finish, while a cream foundation has a dewy finish.

Is Cream Foundation Better Than Powder? Which One To Choose?

powder or cream foundation

Whether to choose powder or cream foundation comes down to your skin type and the look you want to achieve. If you have dry skin and if you’re going for a full coverage look, you might prefer the dewy finish of a cream foundation.

To get the best makeup look, apply a hydrating primer before foundation.

If you have oily skin, you might like the matte finish of a powder foundation. You can also use a mattfying primer to help control shine and make your makeup last longer. You can skip liquid foundation and try a powder foundation for an everyday minimal makeup look.

PRO TIP: Powder foundation is better than cream for a quick look since it’s easier to apply. If you have some blemishes or imperfections to hide, you can use a cream foundation only on the areas that need more coverage and then apply a lightweight powder foundation all over the face.


What is Cream To Powder Foundation? How To Use It? 

milani cream to powder foundation

Cream to powder foundation is a type of cream foundation that starts as a cream and then dries to a powdery finish. It’s best suited for normal to oily skin types since it can help to control shine, and it sets to a matte finish.

This Crème to Powder Skin Foundation is an example. It has a creamy formula that dries to a powder finish after application.

These cream to powder foundations can be applied with your fingers or a brush depending on how much coverage you want.

Apply the product in small dots over your face and blend it out until you have achieved your desired level of coverage. You can also set the foundation with a light layer of translucent powder for extra staying power throughout the day.

PRO TIP: If you’re using a cream to powder foundation for the first time, make sure to use a small amount and build up the coverage as needed. Applying too much can make your face look cakey.

Powder Foundation Vs BB Cream

maybelline bb cream

Another common choice you might have to make is between powder foundation and BB cream. Both products offer light to medium coverage, but they differ in their formulas.

Powder foundation is a dry formula that provides a matte finish while BB cream is a lightweight liquid formula with added skincare benefits.

When choosing between the two, it comes down to your skin type and what you’re looking for in a makeup product.

If you want something quick and easy to apply with light coverage, powder foundation might be the better choice. If you want a product that provides more coverage and also includes skincare benefits, BB cream might be the better option.

A powder foundation is suitable for oily skin whereas a BB Cream with hydrating ingredients can provide moisture for dry skin.

PRO TIP: Most BB Creams include sunscreen but always make sure to wear a separate sunscreen since BB Creams don’t usually offer enough sun protection on their own. Apply sunscreen first before primer or foundation and then do the rest of your makeup.

Read More: BB Cream Vs Concealer

Can You Use Cream And Powder Makeup Together?

l'oreal mineral foundation

Yes, you can use cream and powder makeup together but it’s important to do it in the right order.

You should always apply your cream products first and then your powder products.

Allow all the cream products to set before applying any powder on top. This helps the powder apply smoothly and evenly and also prevents the makeup from separating.

For example, if you want to use a cream foundation and a powder bronzer, apply the cream foundation all over the face and wait for it to set. Then, apply the powder bronzer by blending gently on top of the foundation using a large powder brush.

You can also set the cream foundation with a thin layer of a loose powder or setting powder to help the bronzer blend on top.

maybelline loose powder

There are some exeptions to this rule though, for example you might want to apply a cream blush on top of your powder foundation or use a cream highlighter.

These can be applied after the powder products since they are only applied to small areas of the face. When using a cream product on top of a powder product, always use a very small amount and dab it gently until it’s seamless.

Avoid rubbing the cream products on top to prevent the powder foundation from moving. The same rule applies if you want to use a cream contour with a powder foundation. Blend the contour gently so that it doesn’t look patchy.

honest beauty cream blush

In general, it’s better to stick to one type of makeup products (powder or cream) to ensure that your makeup will stay put throughout the day. However, if you want to experiment with different formulas and textures, be sure to do it carefully and in small amounts.

These were all our tips for choosing between powder and cream foundation products. Which product do you prefer, and why? Let us know in the comments!

Looking for more makeup tips? Check out our articles on how to mix your foundation with water, the best silicone based foundations for oily skin, and tips for preventing your blush from fading.

Related Articles

Why Is Foundation Separating on Your Nose?

Foundation Vs Concealer

Loose Vs Pressed Powder

Liquid Vs Powder Foundation

Can You Use Pressed Powder Alone?

Is Cream Or Powder Foundation Better?

Claire is a beauty enthusiast and lover of all things makeup. Her blog is a resource for makeup tips and tricks, product reviews and beauty tutorials.

Leave a Comment

Skip to content