This Setting Powder Made Me Look 15+ Years Older: Urban Decay Naked Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder

Urban Decay was one of the first brands my teenage heart lusted over back when makeup began to slowly creep into my life. Has anything blown up like their Naked line? The palettes, the concealer, and foundation; you can almost guarantee the newest releases will be a hot topic. Refinery29 reported that the newest addition to this collection, the Naked Heat palette, sold out in just 13 hours! The Naked products are usually great quality... So what happened when they formulated the Naked Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder? If this was the first product you tried from Urban Decay, you would find it hard to ever make another purchase from them. Yeah, It's that bad. 

At a glance, this product is beautiful. The sleek, reflective, gunmetal packaging will get me every time. The powder is silky smooth to touch and swatches so nicely. A word of caution when looking at swatches when reading reviews: a product can swatch terribly and still perform well. A product can swatch gorgeously and be total crap. Let's not even sugarcoat that. This fact was never more true to me than when I tried to use this product. The mirror on this compact is also low quality. I thought maybe there was a protective film over the mirror but it was just sort of blurry. 

Now for the goods. I wanted to like this powder. I really did. It felt so smooth and the color was the right tone. Wearing glasses and loving to wear makeup makes a setting powder a necessity. Finding a powder that doesn't look dry AF can be tricky if you have occasional dryness.

In the product description of this powder on the Urban Decay website it claims, "Unlike powders that leave skin looking chalky or cakey, Naked Skin Finishing Powder gives you a radiant complexion and NATURAL-looking Naked coverage." I'm going to go ahead and say that whole statement is untrue. 

The first time I used this setting powder, I was in shock. Using a fluffy brush, I had lighted dusted this powder under my eyes to set my concealer. Before my eyes, I watched as the Urban Decay Naked Ultra Definition Pressed Finishing Powder settled into my skin morphing my  26-year-old face into that of a much older woman with 3 jobs, too many kids, and years worth of sleepless nights. I looked stressed. I looked dehydrated. I thought that I had applied too much and that a setting spray would make this all better. They usually do. I finished the rest of my makeup, applied some spray and nothing changed. I tried to remain optimistic because Urban Decay is a brand that I trust to make great products. Maybe this is one of those products that looks better as the day goes on? Nah. I looked drier and older and I just wanted to take it off my face. 

After many failed attempts, I decided that this powder was too dense for setting under eye concealer. I tried using this powder to set my whole face. Oh my god. I looked so dry! A setting spray did not help. Different concealers, different foundations, different brushes, different setting sprays. Nothing worked with this powder. You must have extremely oily skin to use this powder. I can’t imagine anyone with any level of dryness finding this powder to be an asset.

The Urban Decay Naked Ultra Definition Finishing Powder and I did have a brief honeymoon phase. I have a small nose and big cheeks which means my glasses rest on my cheeks.  I used this powder to lightly bake the area wear my glasses sit to see if my makeup would last longer. And it worked! I don’t ever bake, ever! But I wanted to try it and it actually looked pretty good with this powder. HOWEVER. I don’t wear makeup every day and after just about two weeks, I had dry patches in the area where I had used this powder to bake. I couldn’t catch a break. 


I have found one use for this powder that I really like which is why the rating is not lower. Even with all of its problems, I still like the Urban Decay Naked Ultra Definition Finishing Powder more than a certain product that I detested and reviewed.  On days I don’t want to fuss with eye makeup, I like to use a concealer on my lids and set it with this powder. It doesn’t look dry and the color brightens my eyes from behind the dark frame of my glasses. I find that because the powder is a bit denser than an eyeshadow, it gives a very smooth base to my lids and covers any prominent veins. It probably also works because my hooded eyelids can get a little oily. Because of that, I know this powder will work for folks with oily skin. Otherwise, turn and run.  

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Available at Urbandecay.com; $34

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