Buy This, Not That!: Oil Controlling Powder

Thursday, July 26, 2012

I'm back with the second installment of Buy This, Not That! where I show you two products--one drugstore, one high end that are virtually the same thing. Here's the first one (on hair oil sprays) if you missed it!

These pictures were taken a couple of weeks ago before I emptied the compact
MAC Blot Powder is $23

As an oily-skinned girl currently battling high humidity, I rely on powder to keep me looking matte. I have a few favorite compacts, but my all-time Holy Grail is the MAC Blot Powder (the pressed one). It's surprisingly difficult to find a powder that can sufficiently de-shine my face and keep it that way without sacrificing anything in texture, but MAC pulls it off. I see a significant difference with my face's degree of shine throughout the day when I use this compared to my other powders, and the texture is really surprising. The powder itself is fairly smooth and finely milled and while it can look cakey if you pile it on, you won't have any problem with that if you apply it with a reasonable hand. But what I like best is that this item does all of that without changing anything about the makeup you have on underneath. It just sits really well on top of base and the like, and with the exception of being matte, I never feel like my makeup looks different pre- and post- powder. I recently emptied out the last of this product, and begrudgingly went back to my other powders, but as luck would have it, stumbled upon a new Neutrogena product: the Shine Control Powder.

Neutrogena Shine Control is roughly $13 (prices vary)

It's part of their new Shine Control range, which includes a foundation and primer, both of which I'm playing with at the moment. But I swear from the first time my brush hit the product, I knew it was extremely similar to MAC Blot Powder. I know that sounds ridiculous, but MBP took on the imprint of the brush bristles in a way that none of my other powders ever have, with the exception of Shine Control. It goes on the same way, and leaves my makeup underneath the exact same. The colors of the powders are also a near-perfect match, which is strange because MAC claims their Blot Powder is invisible, but offers it in different colors. I had mine in Beige, and that's what I would say Shine Control is, though Neutrogena only offers it in Translucent. I'm assuming it's meant to be a "one shade fits all" type thing, but in this case, I think darker skin tones might see a whiteish cast or a bit of paleness. 

What really makes Shine Control a winner for me, though, apart from how near identical it is to Blot, is the packaging. I actually think it's better than the MAC in that department--a far cry from the typical flimsy plastic drugstore compacts. Shine Control is extremely sturdy, feels more expensive than it is, and doesn't have that annoying swivel compartment with a little puff (though some of you might dislike that).

Frankly, I can't see a reason to ever buy Blot Powder again (unless you have dark skin in which case MAC does the powder in Dark and Deep Dark), and this is probably one of the most impressive makeup products available at the drugstore. You do get an extra .05 ounces of product with the MAC, but that is such a minimal difference and the Shine Control saves you $10, so there's really no question here.

You nailed this one, Neutrogena!


  1. Ok I just came upon this post a year late lol. I was researching blot powders and bought the neutrogena powder before reading this review. Yes I am a dark skin black woman and the Neutrogena powder works great. I have really oily skin and wear Mac makeup but I'm so excited that I found this powder in Walmart because it's half the price as Mac.

    1. Glad to hear there's no white cast and that you're enjoying it, Amber!